PAGE | On the trail, Premužićeva staza (part of the Velebit trail)

I’m Eva, a woman from Amsterdam who loves mountains, walking barefoot, being inspired and sharing what inspires me. I write about what I think and feel, my passions and adventures. During the summer of 2016 I hiked the Via Dinarica Trail from Albania to Slovenia. Hiking the Via Dinarica was more than a beautiful trekking or an awesome solo-hike. It was a journey of a lifetime.

And I’m not done yet. Not done hiking. Not done with the Balkans. Those mountains, the people and the nature, I still feel extremely attracted to them. That’s why I went back. In 2017 I walked from Amsterdam to Sarajevo, 4000 kilometres on foot. Once I got back, I knew I would stay. I gave up my apartment in Amsterdam and signed up for a language course in Zagreb.

In June 2018 I continued my Via Dinarica journey from Sarajevo, aiming to explore the Green Trail, the Blue Trail and the unofficial Via Dinarica extensions in Kosovo and North Macedonia. It became my mission to connect the three trails and to inspire future Via Dinarica hikers by sharing my experience through stories, videos, trail thougts and interactive hiking maps.

With my stories, I hope to take you to the Balkans, to the mountains and to a trail which is so much more than just a trail.

My happiness project?

Is this another happiness project of someone who is looking, searching, finding oneself? Who is that person and whose project is it? Of a naive dreamer who wants to for fill her ideals without being judged? A typical successful thirty-er who wonders: is this it? Is this the life I’m going to live the upcoming years? Of a woman who has seen the light and finally decides to choose for herself? Of an adventurer, a tough chick who is going to stir things up and chooses the exit “freedom”?

Maybe, maybe it’s a little bit of all. Maybe I AM a little bit of all. But this project isn’t all about me; Eva. It’s also about you; other dreamers, other thirty-er, other men and women, other tough chicks and all the male versions of them. Other adventurers, hikers, bikers, runners, nature lovers and mountaineers. It’s about everyone who is looking for something and everybody who is not.

It would be awesome if I manage to inspire others. I imagine inspiration to be something that makes  you move, bubble, burn, desire, strive, believe and connect. I’m trying to share a little of all those things; my inspirations. I share what inspires me and sure enough it will lead to something new.

The art of life

Therefore, it’s a personal project as well. I believe I should do this in a personal way, because I am more than a “persona”. Yes I am wondering who I am and what to do with my life, what moves me. Of course, I am trying to find answers and solutions for my doubts, my ‘Yeahh-but, what ifs’. I am asking myself a lot of questions. What kind of creature am I? What have I done so far, in the only life I have got? In what kind of world do I live? But by approaching it positively, I can enjoy this process.

It is absolutely great I’ve got time to think about those things and to me, it’s worth a lot that I am becoming more aware and conscious. Things are good, and I feel safe – even though I’m afraid, insecure and having doubts –  I do feel a strength and an unexplainable trust in that strength. My personal way means that I’m being vulnerable, open and honest. I want to be genuine. I no longer just want to show my tough and strong outside, I want to embrace what’s inside as well.

All of this is the EVAdinarica Project, perhaps my happiness project indeed!

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And coffee

And yes, I love coffee! I’m a bit of an addict, but it’s not just about the coffee. Every country seems to have its own coffee culture, it’s part of their identity. By sitting down and drink a cup of coffee, I’ll be able to take part of the local coffee culture and connect with other coffee lovers/addicts :).

Buy me a coffee

8 Comments

  1. Hi Eva, we found your blog and read some of your adventures already. Respect for you spirit and courage! Now that I read you’re a coffee fan, I feel sorry we coyld only offer you Nescafe in the Donja Bara hut… Safe travels! Richard & the other 4 of the ‘mannengroep’

    1. Hi Richard, the Nescafe totally suited the situation! It was great meeting you, I hope you had a good time, going out in that terrible weather!! Btw the English Donje Bare story will follow soon 🙂 Grtz, Eva

  2. First of all, I want to thank you and congratulate you for your project and for sharing information and promoting hiking in the balkans.

    Your articles give a lot of inspiration for a “dreamer thirty-er” like me.
    I would like to cross the balkans from slovenia to serbia and connect as many forests as possible, in particular the primary forests.
    I am really interested in the information you can give me on the forester part of the via dinarica. What do you think about your experiences?
    Thanks in advance for your answer, good continuation.
    Charles

  3. Hi Charles,
    Thank you for the nice comment, great to hear you want to hike the forest sections. There’s many beautiful parts to connect. I think it will be best to combine the Green and the White Trail, you don’t want to miss Sutjeska and Zelengora (BiH white trail), but Kamačnik and the Gorski Kotar part of the Green Trail in Croatia are better hikable then the Gorski Kotar sections of the White Trail. Unless you like a little bushwhack challenge, then the first few sections Croatian White trail is the place to be. But I would for sure not skip Velebit. Perhaps you could also have a look at the Via Adriatica, because they have a better way to connect Paklenica and Crnopac with Knin. Then from Dinara you could keep on following the White Trail or see to find a way to the green. The thing with the green trail is that there are many unpaved roads and when I was there not so many hiking trails. You can do your research, because there are more options, but be aware that often you cannot leave the path because of mines. Then for Serbia, yes Tara NP is nice, great forest, but also you should hike your own route here if you want to avoid muddy forest roads. I think I would recommend to get into Montenegro instead.
    Good luck and have fun planning!

  4. Dear Eva, I appreciate your knowledge of the Dinarica area. I have a personal projet for a journey: to trek on the Dalmatian large islands. I’d like to cross by foot Vis, Lastovo, Brac, Mljet, hopping from island to island with local ferries. In your site I’ve seen it’s possible to walk the lenght of Mljet. What about the other large souuthern islands? I hope it’s possible…

    thenks for rvery information!

    Valentina Scaglia

    1. Dear Valentina, what an awesome plan! I have never been on Vis, Lastovo or Brač, but maybe you can find more information if you look for local mountaineering clubs (planinarsko Društvo + name of island or mountain or town on the island – be creative) on Facebook (they often mark the trails) and are usually active on Facebook. On Mljet the name of the trail is the MPO if I remember it right. Good luck!

  5. Hi Eva.
    First of all, I want to say that you are an inspiration. Reading what you wrote make me think that “this is a woman that lives, and not just passes by life”, so congratulations.
    In second I would like to ask for an opinion. I am thinking in making a trekking In Slovenia or Croatia, or maybe both. I already have some information about the Triglav mountains treks in Slovenia, and also about the Croatia Long Distance Trail, in special the “C sections”, but I would like to know your opinion about the best choice for a 10-13 day trek in mountains, out of pavement roads, in those regions.
    Thank you.
    Best regards,
    Raul Mendes

    1. Hi Raul,
      I think the CLDT – C section will be fantastic. That’s the part with Velebit & Dinara if I’m not mistaken? Go for it! Julian Alps, Triglav is also very beautiful, but there are way more people there and for a longer trekking it is a bit small. I mean, you can spend months in Triglav NP, but for long distance hiking I recommend Croatia.
      Have fun!

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