Tuesday, 17 October 2017 16:59

CROATIAN HIGHLIGHTS 2018 - from Zagreb

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DAY 1 ZAGREB 4*
Arrival to Zagreb Airport. Transfer to hotel in Zagreb and overnight.
DAY 2 ZAGREB – OPATIJA 4*
Following breakfast at the hotel, enjoy a guided encounter with Croatia’s largest city. With an air of a true European capital, Zagreb charms with its baroque facades and spiffy towers, green parks and open-air terraces, quiet courtyards and bustling streets. Between its historic Upper town and urban Lower town, spot landmarks like the Church of St. Mark with its colorful roof, the Cathedral and the National Theatre. In the afternoon, enjoy the scenic ride to Opatija, the seaside resort town gracing the shores of Kvarner Bay, exuding a grandeur of its 19th-century vogue. Overnight in Opatija.
DAY 3 OPATIJA 4*
Sitting like a gateway to the Istrian peninsula, Opatija is an ideal starting point for a day of discovering Croatia’s largest peninsula. Sometimes referred to as the Croatian Tuscany, along with its heritage, Istria is famed for tasty bits like truffles, wines and olive oils. From hotspot to highlight, marvel at the impressive Roman amphitheater in Pula, the outstandingly charming Rovinj and the mystic Motovun, wrapped in its medieval cloak of walls on top of a lushly green hill. Spend the evening in the graceful Opatija.
DAY 4 SPLIT 4*
The first visit of the day takes you to Croatia’s most popular natural gem, the Plitvice Lakes. A guided walk around the wooden pathways unveils an amazing world of 16 cascading lakes interlaced with over 90 stunning waterfalls, bound to mesmerize you in any season. Continuing the drive to Split, take a break in Trogir, UNESCO-listed World Heritage site. A bundle of narrow atmospheric streets which twist and bend between houses, palaces and churches, the heritage of Trogir is rooted in the Greek and Roman times and showcases some of the finest architectural works in Croatia, including the incredibly intricate portal of its Cathedral, the Town Loggia and the Cipiko palace. Arrive to Split and spend overnight in Split/Split area.
DAY 5 SPLIT – HVAR 4*
After breakfast at the hotel, set out on a late morning walking tour of Split. Dalmatia’s
largest coastal town bustles and buzzes, as it grows more and more popular among travelers for its easy-going spirit, creative food and shopping scene and of course, remarkable heritage. Learn about the Diocletian’s Palace, once the Roman Emperor’s retirement estate and today a lively city center housing 3,000 people!
Finally, enjoy a ferry or catamaran ride from Split to the neighboring island of Hvar where you will spend the night at a hotel in the glitzy town of Hvar.
DAY 6 HVAR 4*
The island of Hvar is known for its purple lavender fields, a backdrop for oil production, potent red wines from steep vineyards especially enjoying the island’s status as Croatia’s sunniest island, and the glitzy jet-set scene along the starlit waterfronts of the town of Hvar, so often featured in national and international summer media. In your morning walking tour, explore the island’s prime gem and its most trendy destination, the town of Hvar. Home to the oldest theatre in Europe, also the home of organized tourism in Croatia, the heritage of Hvar extends far beyond the popular party scene! Enjoy the rest of the day at leisure and spend the night in a hotel in Hvar.
DAY 7 HVAR – KORČULA 4*
Enjoy a breakfast at the hotel and some time on your own. Hvar is known for diverse opportunities, from bustling squares of Hvar town to the serene waterfront of Jelsa, the bridges of Vrboska and vineyards of Ivan Dolac, so expect time to fly. In the afternoon, bid farewell to Hvar and hop on a boat to take you to the neighboring island of Korčula. Arrive in the evening and enjoy an overnight stay in Korčula.
DAY 8 KORČULA – DUBROVNIK 4*
The far south of Croatia holds many gems. You’ll know Korčula was a Venetian stronghold as soon as you lay your eyes on the many lion statues which lurk at you from the town’s facades and gates, intertwined with some of the most outstanding stonework you will get see anywhere on the Adriatic coast. Stroll the narrow, curved streets, marvel at beautiful churches and magnificent palaces in one of the best preserved medieval towns in the Mediterranean. Early in the afternoon, cruise to Dubrovnik, which once successfully rivaled the Venetian Republic. Arrival to Dubrovnik and overnight stay in a hotel.
DAY 9 DUBROVNIK 4*
Enjoy a breakfast at the hotel and a lazy start of the day. In the late morning, embark on a guided walking tour of Dubrovnik Old Town, a.k.a. the Pearl of the Adriatic or the King’s Landing. Whatever you might consider to be the town’s main drawcard, the mighty city walls of Dubrovnik and its courteous spirit will swiftly transport you back in time to when this was an independent republic and a highly cultured Mediterranean town. After learning of its history and present, enjoy the afternoon exploring on your own. Stay overnight stay in your Dubrovnik hotel.
DAY 10 DUBROVNIK 4*
A marvelous city like Dubrovnik can only be surrounded by a marvelous region. Tailor this day to your own liking, whether you are up for just relaxing or perhaps venturing out to explore the islands nearby. Locals would suggest Lokrum Island as an easy trip from the Old Town Harbor. Promising a day of heavenly serenity, Lokrum envelops you in thick green forests of holm oak, pine and laurel, to be shared with the island’s only permanent inhabitants: peacocks and bunnies. Just a tad bit further away, the Elaphite Archipelago packs sandy beaches, remarkable heritage, fun hiking trails and good food into a day excursion. Enjoy the overnight stay in the hotel.
DAY 11 DUBROVNIK 4*
Following breakfast at the hotel, transfer to Dubrovnik Airport (or other hotel/accommodation unit in Dubrovnik). End of program.

Published in Zagreb
Tuesday, 17 October 2017 12:35

ADRIATIC PARADISE CRUISE 2018 - from Split

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DAY 1 Saturday EMBARKATION SPLIT; D
Embark the M/S Adriatic Princess any time after 14:00. Over a welcome drink and a snack, meet your Cruise Director and the crew and get acquainted with the rules and safety measures. Your journey begins with a dinner onboard and overnight in Split.
DAY 2 Sunday SPLIT – HVAR (Island of HVAR) – VELA LUKA (Island of Korcula); B, D (Captains dinner)
Today is the day for enjoying the highlights of the central Dalmatian coast. After breakfast, choose to explore Split on your own or join an optional walking tour* of Split’s famous Diocletian Palace. Built to house the Roman Emperor, the Palace grew into a city after Slavs ruined the nearby Roman town of Salona. With our local guide, discover the secrets of centuries past in what is today the vibrant core of Dalmatia’s largest city. Then, hop over to the island of Hvar, known for the purple of its lavender, the red of its wines and the Venetian feel of its hotspot Hvar. Join an optional guided walking tour of Hvar* or explore on your own before taking a refreshing swim at Pakleni, the wondrous neighboring islands. Finally, a short sail takes you to Vela Luka on Korčula Island, where you will arrive just in time for a relaxing late afternoon, a dinner and overnight stay.
*Split walking tour – optional walking tour package
*Hvar town – optional walking tour package
DAY 3 Monday VELA LUKA (Island of KORCULA) – POMENA (Island of MLJET) – SLANO; B, L
Your captain will choose a secluded bay to hop in the sea and start the day. Surrounded in deep green forests which earned Korčula its name and fame, meditate upon the sound of crickets and silence as you immerse yourself in the essence of this region: the crystal blue sea. Then continue to another green island, this time Mljet. The national park on the island is the home of two salty lakes connected with the sea via a narrow canal. Nature lovers will get a kick from hiking or cycling here, possibly even kayaking to the small inlet in the center of the lake, charming with its 12th-century Monastery of St. Mary. Alternatively, join our optional excursion* – but whatever you do, do not miss out on Mljet! Spend the evening in the small settlement of Slano on the mainland, once adored by Dubrovnik sea captains. Why becomes self-evident as soon as you take your first stroll along the waterfront.
**Optional excursion: Mljet National Park, free time in the National park.
DAY 4 Tuesday SLANO – DUBROVNIK; B, L
In vicinity of Slano, the petite town of Ston claims its fame for many things gourmand: strong wines, ancient salt production and succulent oysters and mussels. Our optional tour the Taste of Dalmatia* highlights all these treasures, but you can also just relax in Slano before sailing out to Dubrovnik. Midway, a dip on Lopud Island gets you up and ready to join an optional guided tour* of Dubrovnik Old Town. Surrounded in immense city walls, as if in a universe of its own, the world-famous facades line up as you walk the same streets like the cast and crews of the Game of Thrones, Star Wars and Robin Hood. Enjoy an evening of romance, glitz and glam, as you will be staying in Dubrovnik overnight.
*Dubrovnik old tour with a coach transfer from Dubrovnik port of Gruz to the Old town – optional walking tour package
**Optional excursion: Taste of Dalmatia
DAY 5 Wednesday DUBROVNIK – EXCURSION TO MONTENEGRO; B, D
In the morning, venture east. Past the serene valley of Konavle, cross the border with Montenegro. The scenery turns more dramatic, with snowcapped mountains looming over the turquoise Adriatic Sea. Driving around Boka bay, its beauty entices, with settlements inhabited as early as the Illyrian and Roman times charmingly dotting the shorelines. Discover the picturesque Perast with its quaint seafront and Our Lady of the Rocks church poised on a manmade island facing the town. Next, visit the UNESCO-listed gem of Kotor. Compare it to Dubrovnik, and find distinct Venetian heritage as the main difference. After your guide introduces you to a maze of curvy alleys and sun-kissed piazzas, wander around on your own before heading back. Upon return, dinner and overnight in Dubrovnik/Dubrovnik area.
DAY 6 Thursday DUBROVNIK – ELAPHITE ISLANDS – KORČULA; B, L
The far south of Croatia holds many gems. Scattered between Dubrovnik and Korčula, the Elaphite archipelago is alluring for its pristine islands which were once an oasis for local seamen to build their ships and for captains to build their estates. Today, the Elaphites are today praised for their quaint ambiance. Stop at one of the three inhabited ones for a stroll and a swim, before a lunch on board en route to Korčula. You’ll know Korčula was a Venetian stronghold as soon as you lay your eyes on the many lion statues which lurk at you from the town’s facades and gates, intertwined with some of the most outstanding stonework you will get see anywhere on the Adriatic coast. The alleged home of the world renowned traveler Marco Polo is bound to charm you whether you explore it on your own or in an optional walking tour*. Overnight in Korčula.
*Korcula town walking tour – optional walking tour package
DAY 7 Friday KORČULA – BRAČ – OMIŠ; B, L
Breakfast is served over the stunning views of the playfully dispersed archipelago of Korčula, and followed by a scenic sail around the tips of Pelješac peninsula and Hvar Island, perhaps even a refreshing dip along the way. Stop to visit the homeland of ‘the Croatian marble’, the island of Brač. You’ve probably seen this ultra-quality limestone already, perhaps on the front of the White House in Washington DC or Bundestag in Berlin, but the optional tour* to the still-operating stonemasonry school in Pučišća brings a chance to learn more about shaping this stone for eternity. Once back at the mainland, get stunned by the dramatic rocks backing the lovely settlement of Omiš right at the mouth of Cetina River. Consider exploring the Cetina River canyon in a boat excursion*. Overnight in Omiš.
*Option: Stonemasonry School –walking tour package
**Optional excursion: Cetina River
DAY 8 Saturday OMIŠ – SPLIT; B
Bright and early, head from Omiš to Split. Enjoy a farewell breakfast before saying goodbye your fellow travelers and crew and disembarking after breakfast.

Published in Split