I work in international education and my husband works in computer forensics, which keeps our professional lives in Chicago busy.
And like many other millennials, we have a variety of side hustles, including travel blogging and computer programming, to fill our free evenings with more professional challenge. We also have an active social life, with almost weekly game nights and dinner parties, in addition to visiting our family who live across the United States.
Needless to say, we fit that busy American stereotype to a T.
Being busy definitely defines our day-to-day lives, but my husband and I also share a deep love for travel. We do our best to fit in at least one big trip a year, along with a few small weekend trips to continue fostering our love of exploration. I tend to get moderately obsessed with planning our travels and find genuine joy in seeing an itinerary come together, filling hours of my time daydreaming about far-off places. I can’t even tell you how many half-baked itinerary ideas I currently have saved in my Google Drive for trips that I will likely never go on.
Because I love to plan travel, it can sometimes be a challenge to actually relax because I have all the details of our itinerary floating around in my head, reminding me of what hotel is coming up next or which shuttle I need to confirm. I do my best to stay mentally present during my trips, but that creeping travel planning stress always seems to slip in.
And although we prioritize traveling as much as possible, we don’t necessarily prioritize vacationing, which to me, means relaxation and restoration. I have a tendency to pack our travel itineraries full of activities, which is awesome for maximizing limited time off, but maybe not as awesome for rejuvenating myself from my busy schedule at home.
That’s why our Intrepid Travel sailing adventure in Croatia was the absolutely ideal itinerary for a vacation! Sailing the Dalmatian coast, on an itinerary I didn’t plan, was the perfect way to maximize relaxation and restoration.
There are a few reasons why a group trip like the sailing adventure feels like a vacation.
Firstly, sitting in the sun on a boat looking at the Croatian coastline is basically a dream come true. How can you not be relaxed doing that? Spending your days working on your tan while lounging on a sailboat as you sail to a new island is inherently relaxing. And it’s made even more relaxing when you don’t have to worry about the details of any of the travel.
Another thing that makes this vacation itinerary so restorative is the lack of wifi. You don’t have much internet access while at sea (since it is such a small boat and you are often far from shore), but the forced digital detox is surprisingly pleasant.
With such stunning scenery, it feels nice to not be looking down at your phone or worrying about what notifications you might be missing. You simply get to kick back and let Croatia unfold in front of your eyes while bonding with your fellow travelers!
The itinerary itself further adds to the relaxation and restoration that you get when sailing the Croatian islands with Intrepid Travel. Dubrovnik and Split are by far the most popular places to vacation in Croatia, especially during the summer months when the population of Croatia nearly triples thanks to an influx of visitors from all over. These cities are popular for a reason — beauty, history, good restaurants, interesting sightseeing — but they are by no means relaxing. The crowds are intense, the prices are steep, and it is nearly impossible to get dinner reservations.
In contrast, the charming towns and quiet streets of the Croatian islands provide the perfect backdrop to a relaxing vacation on the Adriatic because they have none of the crowds of the big cities. Some of the islands are a little bit busier, such as Hvar or Vis, but it’s under-the-radar spots like Mljet and Brac that most let you enjoy wandering round at a leisurely pace.
The off-the-beaten-path itinerary was one of the things that appealed to me most about Intrepid Travel’s Split to Dubrovnik Sailing Adventure because it gave me a window into parts of Croatia that I hadn’t seen on social media before. That sense of discovery is one of the things that I love most about traveling, and it felt so nice to have it fostered throughout our 8 days in the Croatian islands.
From the digital detox to the relaxing boat vibes to the under-the-radar itineraries, sailing the Croatian islands was exactly what two busy Americans needed to relax and unwind.
Ready to experience the bliss that is sailing with Intrepid Travel? Check out our range of small group sailing adventures.
(All images courtesy of Megan Arzbaecher and taken on Intrepid’s Croatia Sailing Adventure.)