The Istrian Auto Cesta

I love the A1 road coming from Zagreb out to the coast. That thing is amazing and I took the old road the last year that people had to take the old road, so I do indeed know the difference. Being able to cruise at whatever your car will allow, whether that’s 120km (like my effin’ Toyota Aygo) or 200km if you happen to have a Porsche and feel like getting friendly with the Croatian police, is some good driving.
There is another artery which is in Istria, called the A8/A9 or, the Istrian Y. The A8 stretch is rather good, despite the fact it is only four lanes intermittently. The A9 is another story. It has maybe 5km or four lanes throughout the whole thing, so passing on it is a nightmare. For most of the trip you’re stuck behind old, Dutch or German caravans that put along at 80km. It makes what should be a half hour trip something more like an hour from the border to Pula.
This is an element that I can deal with, since I was driving during high season. It’s the fact that the authorities in the area have the balls to actually charge for this that hurts my common sense. There is one toll booth in the middle of it that costs about $3 each way. It doesn’t seem like much, but when you’re making multiple trips, it adds up. Also, there is the fact that you’re taking what feels like a relatively straight country road and being charged for this. The Bay Bridge in San Francisco costs $4 one way and that’s a bridge! There was no simple bulldozing to make that happen. They had to span some serious stuff to get that bridge in there and it cost billions to build.
I don’t know what’s up with the Croatian motorway, but for those set to take it, I think that at certain points the old back roads are faster because you can avoid the caravans. Anyone moving slow on those old roads can be blown by quickly because they’re just chasing butterflies.
The Istrian Auto Cesta