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WAKEBOARD VIKEND AVANTURA

ENGLISH VERSION: MY FIRST WAKEBOARD ADVENTURE

Čula sam za vodeni sport wakeboard i znala sam da ga ima u Hrvatskoj, ali da ću stati na board u Varždinu to mi nije bilo ni na kraj pameti.

Sasvim spontano travel-buddy Lana predložila je vikend na varaždinskoj šljunčari koja je uređena kao kupalište. Danas je to službeno Aquacity Varaždin u okviru kojeg je i ugostiteljski objekt (prilično skup, kažu lokalci), uređena sportska igrališta (koja ne djeluju kao da su uporabi), wc i sasvim pristojno uređeno kupalište. Ono što je nama bilo posebno zanimljivo jest wakeboard zona u okviru Aquacity-ja.

Wakeboard (cable wakeboard) je zapravo najsličnij snowboardu – skijaš ima dasku (board) na koju je privezan vezovima te u ovom slučaju koristi vodenu površinu za boardanje ili ti skijanje. Skijaš se dakako drži za ručicu koja je privezana na sajlu koju vuče električni motor. Wakeboard dionica – lift za skijanje na vodi može biti kružna ili pravocrtna (dvosmjerni). Brzinom vožnje, ovisno o iskustvu boardera, upravlja osoba u wakeboard parku. S obzirom na vlastito iskustvo i primjere ostalih sudionika, wakeboarding je iznimno jednostavan za naučiti i već kroz nekoliko vožnji uglavno svim stanu na noge i uživaju u vožnji po vodi. Iz razgovora s instruktorom Matijom saznali smo da stranici unatoč jezičnoj barijeri (uvjeravam vas da Matija odlično priča engleski) prije nauče boardati od domaćeg stanovništva kojima ni puno vještije objašnjenje na hrvatskom jeziku nekako nije dovoljno. A kažu da smo sportska nacija!? Ne marite za godine, jer ovo zaista mogu svi isprobati – i mladi i stari!


Iskusni boarderi izvode kojekakve vratolomije, od skokova, vožnji unatrag, okretnima… što god im padne napamet spremni su isprobati. Ako je wakeboard park dobro opremljen vrlo vjerojatno će imati i vodene rampe koje će iskusni boarderi moći koristiti za dodatne atrakcije i skokove.

Varaždinski aquacity je odlična zamjena za more, osobito ako niste u prilici, bez novca ste ili vam je more daleko. S obzirom na ljetne vrućine, odlično je osvježenje i za Zagrepčane koji mogu Jarun ili Bundek za promjenu zamijeniti izletom prema Varaždinu.

Kakav je osjećaj voziti se? Odličan kad znate da su vam konkurencija mnogo mlađi od vas, a zaista svatko to može probati! Ono što priznam jest da činjenica da se čovjek poprilično naguta vode kod čestih padova, koji mogu biti nezgodni i bolni. Ipak, hrabri ne odustaju i uživaju u još jednoj vodenoj aktivnosti.

Wakeboard je iznimno mlad sport – pojavio se 1984. Godine. U Hrvatskoj je wakeboard popularan posljednjih nekoliko godina te postoji nekoliko liftova: u Poreču, na otoku Krku i Pagu, a za sada imamo lift i u Aquacity Varaždinu i ponovo se postavlja na Jarunu.

Cijena wakeboarda u Varaždinu je 50 kn za 15 minuta vožnje (odnosno 100 kn za pola sata). Dobro je što svo vrijeme ne morate odmah iskoristiti već možete u nekoliko navrata. Za početnike je učenje i prva vožnja besplatna. Lift radi svaki dan od 12-20 sati. Dakle, samo još jedna aktivnost za isprobati!
I još nešto. Ako niste baš u kondiciji, onda svakako očekujte upalu mišića. Ja je evo imam drugi dan…

MY FIRST WAKEBOARD ADVENTURE

HRVATSKA VERZIJA: WAKEBOARD VIKEND AVANTURA

I have heard about the water sport called the wakeboard and I knew you can find it in Croatia, but that I will try it in Varaždin (north Croatia) I´d never guessed!


Quite spontaneously, my travel-buddy Lana (my husband and I met her on our trip to Cuba – but that`s another great story!)  suggested a weekend in Varazdin on some local – you can call it – beach resort on some cleansed lake.

Today it is officially Aquacity Varazdin within there is a restaurant (expensive, say the locals), sports facilities (which do not look like as they are in use), toilet and beach – quite decent. We were particularly interested in the wakeboard zone within Aquacity.
Wakeboard (Cable Wakeboard) is actually similar to snowboarding – a skier has a board attached to his feet and in this case he uses water surface for boarding or skiing. Skier is of course holding the handle which is tied to the cable pulled by the electric motor. Wakeboard lift can be circular or linear. The speed is managed by a person in the wakeboard park. Given our own experience and examples of other participants, wakeboarding is extremely easy to learn and after just a few rides most of the people get on their feet fast and enjoy the ride.

During discussions with the instructor Matija I had learnt that foreigners despite the language barrier (I can assure you that Matija speaks English very well) learn to wake faster than local people who have much easier understanding with instructor. And they say that Croatians are an athletic nation? Don`t care about your age, because this sport can actually try everybody – both young and old!

Experienced boarders do all sorts of stunts, from jumping, riding backward, back flips… whatever they are willing to try. If a wakeboard park is very well equipped and it will probably have water ramps that can be used by experienced boarders for more attractions and jumps.


Varazdin Aquacity is an excellent substitute for the sea, especially if you’re not going there, if you`re a short of money or the sea-side is not in near. Given the summer heat, Varaždin is excellent refreshments for Zagreb citizens who can Jarun or Bundek replace with this one-day trip.

How does it feel to wakeboard? Great, specially when you know that your competition is much younger than you, and really everyone can try! I have to admit, while falling couple of times I drank a lot of water and some of the falls were a bit painful. However, the brave do not give up and enjoy another water activity.

Wakeboarding is an extremely young sport – appeared in 1984. In Croatia, wakeboard became popular in the last few years and there are a few lifts: in Porec, on the island of Krk and Pag, and now we have a lift in Aquacity Varazdin and on Jarun in Zagreb.

What does cost this escapade? Price in Varazdin is 50 kn (about 7 euro)  for 15 minutes or 100 kn (about 14 euro) for half an hour. Good thing is that you don`t have to spend all the time at once but in several occasions. For beginners learning and the first ride is free. Lift works every day from 12-20 p.m.

Just another activity you have to try! And one more thing, if you are not in good shape, then certainly expect sore muscles. I feel the pain for the second day now.

BALI – PARADISE ISLAND OF INDONESIA

We imagine Bali – idyllic beaches, volcanic peaks, hundreds of Hindu temples, rice fields and high coconut palms, which are swinging in the breeze. A dream came true.

This was our first trip to faraway destination. Literally, we traveled almost 24 hours! Some things in life are really worth the effort because in the end the reward is much greater.
Why did we choose Bali? We wanted to go to warm climate where we could relax and find enough activities to fill the time. Although we had many plans and desires, some things we had to sacrifice. However, I do not regret a single moment spent in this tourist paradise.

What do I think you should know?

Although Indonesia is the most populated Muslim country (90% of people are Muslims), in Bali 90% are Hindu. Bali is a tourist island, and in contrast to the rest of Indonesia is quite tame. Tourists are more than welcome here, and everything is generally set to serve them. Despite the tragedies (two bombings 2002 in Kuta and 2005 in Kuta and Jimbaran), Bali is a safe place for tourists. If you’re polite, if you avoid suspicious sites and follow the law, you really won`t have problems. Most rigorous part of the law is the death penalty for possessing or using drugs, and you will hardly get away with “not knowing” about it because there are big signs already at the airport.
Top hotels, endless sandy beaches ideal for surfers (no sharks, unlike the Australian beach), lots of night clubs, and countless places for good shopping – are the main advantages of this island. If I should go to Bali today, I would bring with me only a backpack and a few basic things (of course the camera and money), and everything else I would buy there and renew my wardrobe. There are things that you can buy at affordable prices, and for that you don`t have to bother to go to the market but you can instead take advantage of discounts in the shopping malls. For example, we bought for our friends shirts for about 2-4$ per piece. Of course, shopping at the market means you need to bargain. Extremely low-income (100-300 $ / month) means that all the services you need you can get cheaper. For a decent amount of money you will be able to eat in good restaurants, and if you want to save money then you will actually spend a little. We ate at a restaurant for example for 15 $ including: appetizer, main course, dessert and two drinks for two people. Of course, you decide how much of the budget you are willing to spend on food and my advice is to decide that in advance.

The weather and stay?

If you are looking for cheap flights then you will travel in the off-season, although the chances for the bad weather are higher. However, the number 1 reason why to go to Bali is a tropical climate softened by the breezes from the ocean and the dry period that lasts almost nine months! The rainy season runs roughly from December to March and is characterized by frequent rain and high humidity. Dry part of the year records only short showers.
From the stories of my friends and unknown passengers, I can confirm that it is now difficult to define the dry and wet periods. Many acquaintances travel when they shouldn`t and despite the weather predictions they had a nice weather. Of course, it is certain that you will have more chances for a better travel when there are more favorable weather conditions.

A few tips

Save on the airline ticket – book a few months earlier, out of the season date
Weather conditions – if that is important, choose dry periods and avoid wet period (note the season of the destination you are visiting)
Shopping – on Bali shopping is a great opportunity, no matter whether you are buying in stores or open markets.
Food – do not be afraid of trying. The flavors are familiar, and perhaps a bit exotic (peanut sauce with chicken) and enjoy
Money – carry the euro or U.S. dollar, with the note that you need to have new dollar bills. Before the trip, check which course is better.