Island Hotel Katarina or Paradise With Some Drawbacks

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View of Rovinj from Sveta Katarina Island, Croatia.

View of Rovinj from Sveta Katarina Island, Croatia.

A picturesque island, Sveta Katarina is located in front of the city of Rovinj in Istria, Croatia. It is an island-hotel called Maistra Hotel Katarina. The last owner of the island—Count Milewski, who bought it in 1905—wanted to make it a true paradise to receive guests and use as his own residence. For 21 years, he did a great job, the results of which we are able to see today. The island is a paradise indeed, but… only at first glance.

When you gradually acquaint yourself with it, you notice some really paradoxical and even shocking things, although Count Milewski bears no responsibility for them. More on that later; I don’t want my comments to have a negative influence on your opinion about this wonderful place from the first lines. Let’s be fair.

View of Sveta Katarina Island from the bell tower of the Saint Euphemia Church. Rovinj, Croatia.

View of Sveta Katarina Island from the bell tower of the Saint Euphemia Church. Rovinj, Croatia.

So, for 124 Euros (about 907 Kuna) per day in the Hotel Katarina, Istria, in August, you have:

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Venice Carnival 2014: Our First Carnival Outfits

By Irina

My masquerade mask at the Venice Carnival 2014. Italy.

Victor’s masquerade outfit. Venice Carnival 2014.

We both love Italy and come back here at every opportunity, but it was our first visit to the Venice Carnival. The experience was unique and fascinating simultaneously—you did not only put on a Venetian mask, you tried another life for a while. The carnival costume is like your new persona. You don’t recognize yourself!

Sometimes I have ingenious ideas. Once, when we intended to spend a couple of spring days in Rome, I thought: Why not in Venice and why not in masquerade costumes? A small amount of adventurous spirit inherited from someone from my family forced me to Google “Venice Carnival 2014.” Well, the carnival would take place in the second part of February, and this is the best time for us for the next five years. It’s time to fly!

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The Jamaica of Henry Morgan or Bob Marley?

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jamaica-6

Both these men made Jamaica famous. You won’t find anyone who has not heard about this island, and if you ask what is associated with it, the answers will be “pirates” or “reggae.” However, some may say Jamaican rum.

In my view, the Caribbean Sea today brings to mind thoughts of pirates, just as would have in the 17th century. Because of that piracy connection, a young man named Henry decided to leave England and his rich parents, to go to the Caribbean Sea to seek adventure, romance, and treasure. He had not even enough money for passage on a ship, so he sold himself into slavery. That was a very common practice in those times. If you could not buy a ticket to the West Indies, you pledged to work on the sugar plantations for several years. The price of a one-way ticket for Henry Morgan was ten years.

However, Henry turned out to be a very capable guy; he got his freedom in only seven years, joined a gang and started to steal. Two years later, he had stolen enough money to buy a ship. He continued to rob, kill, and rape. He was lucky to get away with it, as piracy was forbidden by the United Kingdom. The Royal Court could hang you from the yardarm for it, but only if you had no license.

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