Once the Far Beyond conference was underway (please see previous post), there wasn’t much time for sightseeing in the area, which was a shame, as there was plenty we could have done. But we did get a walk into nearby Piran along the Adriatic coast, enough to see the local jellyfish, which were huge, and the dolphins playing in the harbour. The central square in Piran was enormous and largely deserted, partly due to Covid, and partly due to the fact that late March is still pretty chilly in this part of the world.

Piran, like much of the Adriatic, was once part of the Venetian Empire and its architecture reflected those Italian distinctives. We enjoyed walking through the narrow alleyways of the little town exploring the little shops along the way, stopping when we were tired and taking lots of pictures of the sights.

Portoroz to the south was much larger and much more commercial, with several grand hotels and casinos and an extensive boardwalk with little cafes and restaurants nestled against the seafront. I had to make a couple of runs into Portoroz to secure the rental car that we had booked back in England.

Our rental turned out to be a Skoda Octavia with a number of features that we hadn’t come across before. There was navigation, cruise control, lane and brake assist and they all worked in sync. If you set the cruise to 80, and the car, reading your position from GPS determined that the corner would only bear 55, it would brake you to the appropriate speed and then resume your cruising speed on the other side of the corner.

It took a little getting used to – our 10 year old Ford Fiesta in England is the newest vehicle we have owned in several years – but the ride was very smooth. It was a good thing, as we had planned to drive the Dalmatian coast to Dubrovnik and back – some 1500 km – and we needed a safe and reliable vehicle. Octavia did not disappoint as future posts will show!