To Croatia (and back) Summer 2008 - Civinfo
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post #1 of 23 (permalink) Old 21st September 2008, 10:03 Thread Starter
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To Croatia (and back) Summer 2008

Croatia – the trip

Four of us decided to take a holiday in Croatia and get there in one car – My Civic.

Although I have a EX version it is the Polish version without Sat Nav as it was just too expensive to add on when it wouldn’t work here in Poland ( at the time of buying ) . We therefore planned to use my new Tomtom 730 as the navigation aid.

We set off at about 7.30pm on 1st August and planned to get to Vinisce, Croatia sometime Saturday morning – that was the plan. We had a 1000km drive ahead of us. The first thing to mention was that all the luggage went into the boot – and that was for all four of us. That included some food we were taking and everything. We were all amazed as we really thought it wouldn’t all fit in. We were 4 adults and all were able to sit in comfortably and with space, even the guy who was 6ft 2 or over I don’t know. He said he was comfortable.

We set off on what was supposed to be a 14 hour journey which turned into a 22 hour journey. We set the Tomtom to the destination but then our friend told us that we had to take a route that would miss a toll road in the Czech Republic. So we agreed and changed the setting of the Tomtom – big mistake! If you tell it you don’t want to use toll roads you get to see parts of countries you never expected or ever want to see again – but it was interesting seeing the small villages of the Czech Republic – our friends didn’t find it as amusing as my wife and I, as my wife and thought it was hilarious. Anyway after being told that the toll road was actually only about £12 for the I stopped at a petrol station, got the toll payment sticker and went on the motorway. The civic handled very well even though it was very full, I could still feel the acceleration and the car still wanted to go faster. I was impressed. The fuel economy was pretty impressive too but I will give you the overall figure at the end.

We were travelling at night so as to avoid traffic and that is what we did for most of the time but in some major cities along the way I did think to myself – does anyone sleep? But the Tomtom, now set up properly, so I thought, but I was only the driver. I had three navigators telling me what to do – I was not amused. For some reason my friend was not best pleased with my Tomtom device and thought it was the spawn of satan. So I panicked a little and set it again but it was still wrong but who cared. In end I put my foot down with a heavy hand and told them to decide who was to be the navigator and stick to that. Silence erupted in the car. We stopped at a Petrol Station and sat and reset the Tomtom and agreed on the route to the destination and agreed that everyone was happy – everyone was and off we set again. It was late and everyone feel asleep apart from me as I was the driver. I found the car very comfortable to drive long distances; I turned down the brightness of the speedo and so on and found I had no glare on the windscreen at all. The air conditioning, an often reported problem regarding the maintaining of temperature worked well, but I had to turn the temperature up to 25 at night so we kept warm – but everyone was happy with the temperature. The lights lit the road well and clearly and the overall visibility was good for overtaking and driving.

We arrived at the Slovenian – Croatian border at about 5.30am on Saturday morning to the longest traffic jam I have ever been in. And being with Polish people we had to find a way to jump the queue – we didn’t really find one and only managed a short distance jump. And so the wait began, 4 hours to be precise. But the car was nice and comfortable and the others slept whilst we waited. For my wife and I it wasn’t a problem, travelling is part of the holiday and you get to see different things and sometimes strange things along the way. The car was comfortable and remarkably fresh considering we had all been sitting in this car for over 8 hours. The queue moved very slowly and as I said we were there for 4 hours. We got to the border crossing and went through it in about 2 minutes. Yep, 4 hours for 2 minutes, if that, at the crossing. Anyway we got through and Tomtom told us which way to go with great efficiency and we got going again at speed ( within the law I hasten to add)

Then about an hour into the drive in Croatia, we hit another traffic Jam. So we sat and watched the people in other cars whilst we waited in line. The air conditioning now working with great efficiency as the temperature was in the late 20’s and we needed it. Again we sat with great comfort and patience as we were delayed for another 3-4 hours in the traffic jam. A two lane road had been reduced to one lane through one tunnel and caused horrendous traffic problems. Personally on holiday I don’t mind being in a traffic jam and just taking my time. We couldn’t get into our apartment where we were staying until after 12 noon anyway so it was a problem. We just enjoyed watching everyone around us.

Finally we got to near our destination and the car was doing fantastic. It was economical, comfortable and friendly. Then we turned towards the place we were to stay at and we saw a huge mountain that we had to pass to get to the place we were staying. Would the civic make it with so much of a load. Of course it did. It did a fantastic job and made the steep hills and turns seem like nothing at all. We were all impressed with it. The brakes worked well and I used the engine to slow the car too.

In conclusion the car was fantastic and comfortable. All four of us got to our destination without any complaints about the car with regards to comfort, even the tall guy. The Civic is a great long distance car and one I would recommend to anyone who is making a longer trip. The economy worked out at about 7l/100km (40mpg) which isn’t bad for a petrol fully loaded.

The journey back took 19 hours but that was due to road works in Croatia. Again the journey was very comfortable and efficient, even with the weather being rainy. I arrived back in Poland just missing the tornado that ripped through cities not far from where I live. The car coped really well in the wet. The auto windscreen wipers are great and work really well. Tomtom performed really well as we planned and checked the route thoroughly this time.

In all the Civic impressed me no end. Four adults in a 'small' family hatch travelled a total of 2200km without any problems. We didn't kill each other and we all felt we had enough space for ourselves. Great, great car.

Last edited by HappyMan; 21st September 2008 at 10:54. Reason: Spelling mistakes
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post #2 of 23 (permalink) Old 21st September 2008, 10:47
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Sounds like it was quite an adventure Happyman.

Good review and glad to see your friends are as impressed with the Civic as you are.
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post #3 of 23 (permalink) Old 21st September 2008, 10:47
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Sounds like a good trip.



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post #4 of 23 (permalink) Old 21st September 2008, 14:05
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quite a trip!! It made me laugh

If you are the driver you have to read the riot act to any 'helpful' passengers so they let you get on with it

Sounds like the car did really well
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post #5 of 23 (permalink) Old 21st September 2008, 15:01
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Sounds like you need a Garmin. I use mine all over Europe. Really, really reliable. Or, failing that, a good old fashioned map as backup!
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post #6 of 23 (permalink) Old 21st September 2008, 15:06 Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by jayt43 View Post
Sounds like you need a Garmin. I use mine all over Europe. Really, really reliable. Or, failing that, a good old fashioned map as backup!
The Tomtom works really well actually and on the way back was perfect in every way. I spent some time whilst on holiday getting used to it and understanding how it works. Once I had done that it was perfect. I am really pleased with it
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post #7 of 23 (permalink) Old 21st September 2008, 20:36
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The Tomtom works really well actually and on the way back was perfect in every way. I spent some time whilst on holiday getting used to it and understanding how it works. Once I had done that it was perfect. I am really pleased with it
Which TomTom do you use? I've had a 910 which was quite expensive but in Croatia it had towns but no roads on its map - which didn't stop the company from advertising it as having "maps of all European countries"... Now I've got a Falk nav which is (and feels) cheaper but has very good and up-to-date maps
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post #8 of 23 (permalink) Old 21st September 2008, 20:37
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Quote:
Originally Posted by civicfan View Post
Which TomTom do you use?
Quote:
Originally Posted by HappyMan View Post
We therefore planned to use my new Tomtom 730 as the navigation aid.




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post #9 of 23 (permalink) Old 21st September 2008, 20:41 Thread Starter
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I have the 730 which as you say doesn't have all of croatia but does have the most important bits. We never had a problem getting around in Croatia using the 730.
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post #10 of 23 (permalink) Old 21st September 2008, 20:54
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Cool Sympathies to HappyMan ...

I lived \ worked in the N.E. of Scotland (Ross-shire) for many years, where there was a quite significant 'Polish presence' ...

That stemmed from the large number of Polish troops \ POWs \ etc. who stayed on in the UK after the 2nd. World War ...

Anyway - patience - even 2 or 3 generations later, isn't a Polish national (or even trans-national) strongpoint !!! ...

I feel for you !!! ...

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post #11 of 23 (permalink) Old 21st September 2008, 21:25 Thread Starter
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The Poles are a great people who have endured a horrid past. In centuries gone by the were a great nation where Poland was from sea to sea. Sadly, that came to an end and you can see the scars of that today.

Poles are incredibly critical of themselves and their Country which is sad because Poland is a great place to live and to visit
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post #12 of 23 (permalink) Old 21st September 2008, 21:34 Thread Starter
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One things I forgot to mention was that whilst I was in Croatia I had to fill up and came across a petrol station called 'Petrol' and thought to myself well this is going to be crap petrol. In fact it wasn't and it was very good indeed. I got very good MPG out of a tank and was very pleased
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post #13 of 23 (permalink) Old 21st September 2008, 22:53
 
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Hahahahha Vinisce Croatia you say???

Well greetings from an island of Veliki Drvenik just in front of Vinisce, I have a house here, still on holiday hehehe...

You enjoyed your stay in Vinisce?
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post #14 of 23 (permalink) Old 21st September 2008, 23:28
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great story HM
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post #15 of 23 (permalink) Old 22nd September 2008, 05:28 Thread Starter
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Hahahahha Vinisce Croatia you say???

Well greetings from an island of Veliki Drvenik just in front of Vinisce, I have a house here, still on holiday hehehe...

You enjoyed your stay in Vinisce?
Very, very much. It was a great quiet place with a nice small beach. We put our beach mats on the beach the first day we arrived and never moved them for 2 weeks - and no one stole them. Croatia is lovely
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post #16 of 23 (permalink) Old 22nd September 2008, 12:13
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HM I agree that the Civic is a great long distance cruiser, if only the road noise was lower it would be fantastic.

I disagree with you about not minding being in traffic jams when I am holiday though Warp speed is necessary at all times.

If you think those jams are bad, I was living with my parents in Germany from 1988 - 1991 when they just started to allow travel between East and West Germany (as it was). One summer they were reporting 100 km queues for the border crossings
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post #17 of 23 (permalink) Old 22nd September 2008, 12:18
 
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Very, very much. It was a great quiet place with a nice small beach. We put our beach mats on the beach the first day we arrived and never moved them for 2 weeks - and no one stole them. Croatia is lovely
Yeah, it's peaceful and calm, a relaxation from the real world. I know what you're talking about when you say you kept your beach mats for two weeks and no one stole them, I have my beach chair for over three years on 'my' beach




Glad to see your Civic served you well all the way
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post #18 of 23 (permalink) Old 22nd September 2008, 17:29 Thread Starter
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Sekhmet - That looks fantastic and reminds me of my holiday

Alanwalne - I don't find the noise that intrusive to be honest and didn't really notice it. 100km jams - wow, now that might cause me some problems
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post #19 of 23 (permalink) Old 22nd September 2008, 19:39
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Thanks so much for your excellent report, HM Really enjoyed reading it, like being there it was I could 'feel' the navigation 'atmosphere' on the way LOL !! Holidays would not be the same without it !!

One thing about large people in the back, my son does say there is less room than he had in the Accord but not so much it really bothers him, but what does bother him is that the visiblity, he reports, is significantly worse in the Civic.

Still, it is clear that it peroformed admirably and, reading between the lines, so did yourself and your good wife

Thanks again.
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post #20 of 23 (permalink) Old 23rd September 2008, 13:44
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Quality review Happyman, glad to hear the car dealt so well with the journey.

Not so sure of your assessment of traffic though, I get twitchy if i get stuck at a set of lights on my way to work (1/3rd of a mile) in the mornings!!!
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