|11 Sep - 23 Sep|
We are pleased to introduce a new small group tour to Croatia for 2022. Missing from our portfolio for many years, we finally found the perfect tour offering visits to the main highlights of this fantastic country but with time taken to explore the lesser visited regions and even a hop across the border into Bosnia-Herzegovina included to allow for maximum exploration of this corner of the Balkans.
Highlights include Trakoscan Castle and the Zagorje region, the stunning hilltop villages of Istria, two national parks filled with dramatic karst scenery and gushing waterfalls, and the Dalmatian coast with its iconic walled cities. All of this is topped off with many included meals showcasing the best of regional Croatian cuisine in traditional konobas.
The tour operates with a minimum of 4 and a maximum of 22 and is operated by our trusted local partner.
Fly to Zagreb. On arrival, meet the tour leader and transfer into the city for a 2 night stay. There will be a welcome presentation this evening with drinks and snacks.
Head out on a city tour of the nations capital today, visiting both the upper and lower parts of the town. The two are connected by one of the worlds shortest funicular railways. The Church of St Marks with the primary-coloured Croatian coat of arms on its roof is the dominant feature of the upper town, whilst Ban Jelacic Square, Dolac market and several world class museums are some of the highlights of the lower town. In the afternoon, take an optional journey out to the town of Samobor for a slice of Samoborske kremsnite, a delicious custard cream cake. The town is famous for its version of this popular Croatian delicacy and many Zagreb residents travel out here just for this. Alternatively, you can opt to spend some time at leisure in Zagreb. (B)
Set off for Trakoscan Castle this morning. With a history spanning almost 800 years, this fairy-tale castle is set in beautiful parkland and houses a museum displaying a valuable collection of paintings, furniture and weaponry, representing the life of the Drašković family who were the last occupants of the castle. Lunch is at Gresna Gorica Restaurant, a popular restaurant in the Zagorje region known for its traditional food such as Strukli (cottage cheese dumplings). Afterwards, visit the Ethno village of Kumrovec where the former president of Yugoslavia, Tito, was born. The village has been preserved to resemble a typical Zagorjan village from the early 20th century. Continue to the Kvarner coast and the genteel town of Opatija for a three night stay. (B,L)
Spend the day getting acquainted with the villages of the Istrian interior and its most famous produce, truffles. Take a foraging trip with an experienced truffle hunter, learning the traditional ways of sniffing out these delicious black and white morsels. Afterwards, explore the beautiful hilltop village of Motovun, looming over vineyard clad hills, the views from its city walls are spectacular and inside the walls you can find many shops and restaurants offering exquisite local produce. Enjoy lunch and wine tasting at a rural restaurant before exploring Istria’s administrative capital, Pazin. The town has the largest and best-preserved medieval fort in Istria. Return to Opatija for a leisurely evening. (B,L, wine tasting)
Travel down to Pula this morning for a look at its famous Roman amphitheatre. This magnificent 1st Century AD structure is one of the best preserved of its kind. Designed to host gladiatorial contests and seating up to 20,000 spectators, it still plays host to many cultural events. Free time for lunch in Pula before moving on to the venetian splendour of Rovinj. You’d be forgiven for thinking you are in neighbouring Italy when you arrive in Rovinj. The colourful houses of the old town jostle for space leading to the Church of St Euphemia, whilst fishing boats and glitzy yachts bob in the harbour below. Stop for dinner at Konoba Roc, en-route back to Opatija. (B,D)
Head back inland today towards the world-famous Plitvice National Park. No holiday in Croatia is complete without a visit to this UNESCO World Heritage site. Spend time visiting some of the stunning 16 lakes and their 92 spectacular waterfalls. Walk the ancient woodland path past the upper lakes before taking a boat ride down to the lower lakes and a short train ride through the pine woods which provide a serene yet beautiful backdrop to the cascading waters. Continue to coastal Sibenik for dinner and check in to the hotel for a two-night stay. (B,D)
Dedicate today to another of Croatia’s stunning national parks, Krka. A karstic phenomenon, the Krka River has created a 200m deep canyon which cuts through the limestone hills and has created many thundering waterfalls and pools large and safe enough to swim in (so don’t forget your costume!) Dinner is at Konoba Vinko, a recipient of the Michelin Bib Gourmand. Return to Sibenik for an optional evening walk around this pretty town. (B,D)
Continue south towards Split, stopping at the pocket-sized Dalmatian gem of Trogir. Take a guided tour of the town where every corner is full of character and intricately carved Renaissance palaces and elegant churches line the cobbled passageways which lead out on to a small marina. Set off for lunch and wine tasting in Kastela, the home of Zinfandel production, before reaching Klis Fortress. Best known for providing defence against the Ottoman Empire in the 16th Century and being the city of Meereen in Game of Thrones. Arrive in Split in the late afternoon for a two-night stay. (B,L)
Spend the day exploring the vibrant city of Split with its magnificent Diocletian’s Palace and buzzing waterfront riva. The old town and heart of the city are contained within the walls of the atmospheric Roman palace which 3,000 inhabitants call home. Highlights include the Peristil Square and the Cathedral of St Domnius and Temple of Jupiter. After the tour, enjoy lunch at Konoba Fetivi and a performance by local klapa singers. Spend the remainder of the day exploring the city at leisure. (B,L)
Take the ferry across to the island of Brac this morning. Brac is the largest island in the central Dalmatian region and sits an hours ferry ride to the south of Split. Pass through the pretty fishing villages of Postira and Pucisca before driving up to the islands highest point, Vidova Gora, where views stretch out across to the neighbouring island of Hvar. Continue on to Bol for lunch at a local restaurant and to enjoy the town before returning to the mainland to drive up into Bosnia-Herzegovina. Stay overnight near Mostar, in an ethno hotel. (B,L)
Embark on a guided tour of the Herzegovinian gem of Mostar, this morning. The iconic Ottoman 'Stari Most' (Old Bridge) lies at its heart and is a poignant reminder of the horrors of the Balkan war of the 1990s, having been painstakingly rebuilt after it was destroyed. Throughout the town you will find many craft and artisan stalls selling handmaid and unique items. En-route back into Croatia, stop off at the historic village of Pocitelj with its imposing fortress overlooking the Neretva valley. Back down on the Croatian coast, Ston beckons. The town boasts a network of 5km long city walls, the longest of its kind in Europe. It is also famous for its oysters, try some with dinner and wine tasting at Konoba Bakus. After dinner, hop back across the border to Trebinje in Bosnia-Herzegovina, for a two night stay. A great base from which to visit Dubrovnik. (B,D, wine tasting)
Trebinje is only a 40-minute drive from Dubrovnik. Arrive in Dubrovnik for a morning city tour. This renowned city is ringed by its impressive defensive walls. Inside the old town lies in a maze-like tangle of marble lined lanes and passages leading to various churches, palaces, fancy restaurants, and boutiques. Spend a leisurely afternoon under your own steam, perhaps opting to take the cable car up to Mt Srd for exceptional views of the island dotted coastline. Before you depart, take a sunset galleon cruise around the islands before dinner and the drive back to Trebinje to overnight. (B,D)
Transfer to Dubrovnik Airport for your return flight. (B)
|Itinerary Dates||From Price||Single Room Supp.|
11 Sep 2022
23 Sep 2022