Georgie from England and her American boyfriend Adam are a power couple currently living in Lika and there is a great story behind their adventure. In a very fun interview, they both shared the reasons for coming to Lika from California, and why they even consider moving here.
They met in Belfast, Northern Ireland. Georgie was working as a dancer at the Grand Opera House in Cinderella and Adam was travelling. It was love at first sight!
How does a couple like this end up living in a very small village in Lika?
Well, it all started in California, where I showed Adam, my boyfriend, a picture of Plitvice Lakes, the ever famous walkway, and he instantly fell in love with it! We were on a European road trip from the UK when we made our way to Croatia! We searched Airbnb for a place to stay throughout the whole of Croatia, but fell in love with this farmhouse just outside of Otočac!
When we arrived, we discovered the Bear Sanctuary in Kuterevo and Adam went to volunteer 3 days a week! We had planned to stay for only 2 months, but that soon turned into 3, and by the middle of our 3rd month we had bought an old Mercedes van in Karlobag and decided we would both like to volunteer at the sanctuary over the winter whilst we renovate our van and experience this extreme Lika winter that everybody talks about!
We have fully fallen in love with our surroundings, neighbours and the spirit of the place! It was an easy decision to extend our stay and we know for sure this won’t be our last time in Lika!
We saw in your photos that you are fully engaged in the community. How did the people accept you?
Our neighbours, who we now call friends… the whole community have been nothing but welcoming and helpful! Adam spent hours during the summer months helping friends harvest potatoes, walnuts… and of course plums! 🙂
The evenings we have spent around a Rakija Still! Exchanging stories, being fed glorious food and listening to local Croatian music! Memories we will cherish forever!
One of our first interaction’s with anyone from Lika, was our 85 year old neighbour! We couldn’t communicate at first (until we learnt some basic Croatian). But that didn’t stop her chatting away, showing us the Croatian way to chop fire wood and how to cut grass with a scythe.
Our earliest memory of Milka was her shouting at her cats day and night, which gave us giggles and comfort. She is the sweetest lady we have ever had the pleasure of meeting, we now share friends with her grandchildren and have spent many an afternoon picking walnuts over copious amounts of coffee!
Is the winter as hard as you thought it would be?
After many locals telling us they haven’t had much snow the past couple of years, we were actually concerned we weren’t going to get to experience this famous Lika winter! But mother nature definitely pulled through for us!
We have enjoyed sleighing around and keeping toasty by the fireplace! It has given us even more respect for these incredible people who work the land and endure these conditions year after year… they are truly remarkable people, full of positive spirit!
What jobs did you do at the sanctuary?
We volunteer three days a week at the Bear Sanctuary, the work has differed from season to season… During the summer months, whilst Adam was working here, he would welcome visitors, provide information about the bears. Of course feeding the bears! He also helped in the community’s hay and potato harvests!
Then there is also keeping the exclosures maintained for the bears! Since I have joined the Refuge in the winter, tasks have ranged from cooking, shovelling snow, Adam helped build a shelter for the ponies and a lot of fire wood collecting and chopping! 🙂 We all pitch in! Its a little community within a community here! 🙂
Could you picture yourself maybe living here in the future?
Without a doubt, we don’t know where’s next but we know for sure we will be back. We are already planning our return next summer for a friend’s birthday party!!
We have just celebrated our two year anniversary here in Lika, and can look back on two jam packed years full of adventure and travel! Including a 12,500 mile road trip around America & Canada, Living in the heart of Barcelona for 3 months and roadtrippping through the beautiful Croatia!
We are so thankful we found our dream van renovation project here in Croatia, that way we will forever have a piece of Lika with us, wherever we are in the world!