A Travellerspoint blog

24 March, Thursday

KOPER, SLOVENIA; once captial of the mighty Venetian Republic. Today it is a major hub for sea cargo to and from Africa and Asia. Nearly all the automobiles, and their parts pass thru this port on their way to other nations. Koper is also a major producer of SEA SALT taken from the Adriatic Sea.
They put the sea water in large shallow pools and let the sun evaporate the water. The salt is so pure it does not have to be cleaned after collecting.
They also harvest some salt before total evaporation using nets. This is called SEA SALT POWDER.

The town of 50,000 has some 45 churches. They do have a grocery store and a department store which we have not seen before in any town.
Most of the shops on the streets are very small with little merchandise shown. No cars are allowed in the Old Town portion.

In the evening Viking had a reception for those of us that extended out cruise to Athens. There were 64 people that boarded in Barcelona and are continuing on. We each received a gift certificate for a discount on a tour in the towns we had visited on the way to Venice. (Dubrovik and Corfu)

VIKING DOES THINGS FIRST CLASS>

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Koper (1)

Photo of billboard that depicts the city. You can see all the countries that surround Slovenia.

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Koper (2)

The Government House on the main square. To the left is the Cathedral and Bell Tower.

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Koper (3)

The Cathedral and Bell Tower in the main Square. Simple on the outside elegant on the inside.

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Koper (4)

The Altar inside the Cathedral.

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Koper (5)

One of the many areas inside the church.

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Koper (6)

The salt store in Koper. Koper is known world wide for it sea salt. They used to harvest it for the Venetians but then discovered they could do business on their own. They forms pools of the Adriatic Sea and let it evaporate.

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Koper (7)

This home belonged to a Sea Captain. The wife would go to the tower on the right, especially in the summer. to sit in the sun all day so her hair would bleach to blonde.

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Koper (8)

The CIty Well in one of two city squares. This provided drinking water to all the residents of Old Koper. Although the well is not used as much today the water is still pure and sweet.

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Koper (9)

The harbor busy with container ships and auto-carrier ships. Biggest port for export of European cars to Africa and Asia.

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Koper (10)

View of surrounding country side from our room onboard the Viking Star

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23 March, Thursday

Day two in Venice. Did the walking tour and evening gondola ride on Wednesday and today is free time. Most of the passengers got off and a new 800 people got on. We took the Viking shuttle boat to St Marks Square and spent the day wandering and shopping. Lots of MURANO glass stores with awesome creations. Good food cafes and short order places. All along the major canals are places to eat in the open with good pizza and beer.

Venice consists of 118 islands. NO cars, if you live outside the city but work inside you can drive or take a train to a central hub. Then you get a water bus or water taxi to complete your journey. It is interesting to watch the reconstructions of buildings. All the rubbish is hauled away by boat and all the new items are brought in by boat. You see many stewards with 2-wheel dollies moving items of construction, food and items for sale.

St Marks Square is THE meeting place, not only for people but for piegons. Hundreds if not thousands flutter about looking for something to eat. You are not supposed to feed them but everyone does.

Our first day in Venice was misty and light sprinkles, which was good in a sense. Less people and fewer piegons. Thursday was sunny, warm and crowded.

Tonight we sail for SLOVENIA.

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Venice (1)

One of the many (118) small islands that comprise Venice. As you can see it is foggy, misty and even some light rain.

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Venice (2)

One of the many walking bridges over smaller canals seen as we sail into Port.

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Venice (3)

Stores and boats along the Grand Canal as we sail into port.

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