Croatia

I recently spent  some time on the Adriatic coast in the Republic of Croatia, formerly part of Yugoslavia, and encompasses over 1,000 islands.  Croatia joined the European Union on 1 July 2013 making the Republic Europe’s newest member state, the 28th, and is classed as an emerging and developing economy.  The region has a very rich history including evidence of Homo Erectus of about 1 million years ago and more recently in 9AD, the territory became part of the Roman Empire.

These images are from the Riviera, which occupies the coast opposite the largest island of Krk and to the north on the peninsula of Istria.  During the summer months it is possible to fly from the UK to Rijeka airport, located near the Riviera on the island of Krk.  These images show the beauty of the region in such towns as Crikvenica, Novi Vinodolski and Selce; with transparent seas and richly coloured buildings which the Croats seem to love and of the island of Krk in villages Vrbnik and Baška.

The region of Istria to the north is known for its cuisine and wine making, fishing and ship building.  The landscape there feels cooler and more temperate compared to the rugged mountains of the riviera in which some aspects of the way of life seem more like the former Soviet Union than the European Union.  The large city of Pula is located on the southern tip of Istria and is the region’s administrative centre and has been since ancient Roman times.  The images from Istria are taken in the world’s smallest town – Hum, the village of Roc and the hilltop town of Motovun.  The ‘Pula Arena‘ is the only remaining Roman amphitheatre to have four side towers and all three architectural orders entirely preserved.  It is made from limestone and was constructed in 27 BC – 68 AD and could accommodate 23,000 spectators.

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Glagolitic Alphabet Ⰲⰲ
When exploring the region, I couldn’t help but notice ancient writings, these looked very similar to those I’ve seen in Russian monasteries and much older than Cyrillic.  It turns out that this ancient alphabet is called ‘Glagolitic‘ and was invented by missionaries St. Cyril (827-869AD) and St. Methodius (826-885AD) in the 9th century in order to translate the Bible and other religious works into the language of the Great Moravia region.  When Methodius’s disciples were expelled from the region in 885AD, they disseminated their knowledge (including the Glagolitic alphabet) to other Slavic countries.  They created Cyrillic, named after St. Cyril, which became the standard alphabet in the Kievan Rus (modern day Russia, Ukraine and Belarus).

Sony NEX-7
I decided to travel extremely light this trip, and leave the 5D and lenses at home in their back-pack.  These images were taken with an NEX-7 camera with 16-50mm f/3.5-5.6 power zoom lens.  The camera can be classed as a ‘compact’ camera but its main distinguishing feature is that it has an APC-S sized sensor.  Size matters when it comes to sensors and film, this sensor is the same size as all but the pro-level SLR’s and so the quality should be superb.  Overall; I’m very impressed with this camera and lens!

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