A Taste of Croatia & Slovenia Hosted Tour & Cruise
Prepare to enrich your palate and rejoice in history, nature, and culture as you discover one of the most interesting areas of Europe! Spend 14 remarkable days touring Croatia, Slovenia and a touch of Italy, followed by 8 days onboard a Deluxe Small Ship, cruising the gorgeous Adriatic coastline. You may even choose to extend your stay to see Montenegro and Bosnia & Herzegovina.
History & Culture: Throughout our tour we will be joined by local guides who will intrigue us with their tales of local history and culture. Together we will visit six of Croatia’s eight UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
Landscapes & Nature: Imagine impressive mountain ranges, breathtaking National Parks, and the crystal clear Adriatic Sea.
Cuisine: Experience the traditional flavours and cuisines of each area we visit, whether dining in a local restaurant for lunch or dinner, or enjoying a special tasting.
MS Markan (2018): Capacity 38 passengers, A/C, 9 VIP Upper Deck Cabins with Private Balconies, 2 Main & 8 Lower Deck Cabins with ensuites, length 48.5m, width 8.8m, 220V, restaurant, bar, lounge, SAT TV, covered terrace, sun deck, jacuzzi, swimming platform.
MS Black Swan (2018): Capacity 36 passengers, A/C, 3 VIP Cabins (2 Upper, 1 Main), 5 Main & 8 Lower Deck Cabins with ensuites, length 48.4m, width 8.6m, 220V, restaurant, bar, lounge, SAT TV, covered terrace, sun deck, jacuzzi, swimming platform.
12 Jun – 03 Jul 2019
Having guided tours across Europe before making New Zealand her home, Ela is again looking forward to sharing her passion of great food, culture, and history with you all on this marvellous tour.
10 Aug – 31 Aug 2019
Passionate about travel and her Croatian heritage, Teodora has previously hosted tours and is excited to showcase the very best of Croatia and Slovenia once again. Join her on this delightful tour.
Day by day Itinerary:
DAY 1 Zagreb
Upon arrival you will be transferred to your hotel. Your afternoon is at leisure before meeting your Host and Tour Director at 1900HRS. Overnight and dinner at the hotel. (D)
DAY 2 Zagreb – Varaždin – Zagreb
Zagreb is home to a mix of 18th and 19th century buildings with many charming parks, squares and city markets. You will discover Ban Jelačić Square and medieval settlements of Gradec and Kaptol. See the Cathedral, Dolac Market, Tkalčićeva Street, Stone Gate and St Mark’s Church. Proceed through the castle region to Varaždin. Once the capital of Croatia, Varaždin is a gorgeous old Baroque town with a lovely castle from the 18th century. This evening enjoy a welcome dinner at an authentic restaurant in Zagorje. (B, D)
DAY 3 Zagreb – Ljubljana
Head to the Slovenian capital city of Ljubljana. Ljubljana lies in a basin between the Karst and Alpine region. This city with a soul features the Baroque Old Town nestled at the foot of Castle Hill, the Art Nouveau mansions and masterpieces of the renowned architect Jože Plečnik. Dinner is at a local Slovenian restaurant. (B, D)
DAY 4 Ljubljana – Bled – Bohinj – Ljubljana
Lake Bled, together with its surroundings ranks among the most beautiful alpine resorts. Enjoy a Pletna boat ride along the lake to Bled Island. See St Mary’s Church and later continue to the old medieval castle up on the cliff. The enchanting views and fairy-tale beauty are sensational. After sightseeing, enjoy a special lunch in Bled. Continue to Bohinj. Part of the Triglav National Park, it impresses with a serene natural beauty. Visit and tasting at the famous Bohinj cheese farm. Return to Ljubljana for an evening at leisure. (B, L, T)
DAY 5 Ljubljana – Postojna – Predjama – Momjan – Poreč
Postojna Caves is one of the world’s largest karst monuments. For 140 years train journeys have been taking visitors through the caves to see the spectacular underground subterranean world. Photo stop in Predjama Castle before arriving to the small village of Momjan where we visit an award winning winery of famous local wines. This evening, dinner is at a local restaurant in Poreč. (B, T, D)
DAY 6 Poreč – Motovun – Livade – Poreč
Poreč is home to the UNESCO World Heritage Site Euphrasius Basilica from the 6th century AD. The apse of the Basilica is ornately decorated with figural mosaics noted as one of the most remarkable examples of mosaic art in Europe. Later proceed to the gorgeous hilltop town of Motovun. Motovun is possibly the most picturesque medieval town of inner Istria. Continue to Livade for lunch at Zigante restaurant where you will experience a tasting of local truffles. Return to Poreč for an evening at leisure. (B, L/T)
DAY 7 Poreč – Rovinj – Pula – Vodnjan – Poreč
The seaside town of Rovinj is one of the most romantic towns on the Mediterranean, with its cobbled streets, squares and picturesque buildings. Enjoy free time before meeting for lunch at a local restaurant. Continue to Pula where you will visit the Roman Amphitheatre, the Temple of Augustus and the Arch of Sergii. Istria has a long tradition in olive oil making and we get a taste of this on our visit to Vodnjan where we sample the local olive oil. Return to Poreč for an evening at leisure. (B, L, T)
DAY 8 Poreč – Venice – Poreč
Enjoy a day trip to Venice. A walking tour will show you the highlights, including St Mark’s Square, St Mark’s Basilica, the Doge’s Palace, Bell Tower and Bridge of Sighs. Visit a glass blowing factory and watch a master artisan demonstrate this traditional Venetian art. The rest of your day is at leisure to experience Venice. Late afternoon return to Poreč for dinner and overnight.
DAY 9 Poreč – Grožnjan – Momjan – Opatija
Today you will take a scenic drive through the rolling hills before stopping at a medieval hilltop village for a pleasant walk. Lunch will be at an authentic family owned restaurant in the small village of Momjan. Continue to Opatija for an afternoon at leisure. Opatija is one of the most popular seaside resorts on the Adriatic and is often referred to as Croatia’s Monte Carlo. This little town was once the playground of the Austro-Hungarian nobility who had their summer palaces here and was home to the first casino in Europe. (B, L)
DAY 10 Opatija – Plitvice Lakes
The Plitvice Lakes are Croatia’s most popular tourist attraction. The beauty lies in its sixteen lakes, inter-connected by a series of waterfalls, set in deep woodland populated by deer, bears, wolves, boars and rare bird species. Later enjoy a dinner at the authentic hotel restaurant. (B, D)
DAY 11 Plitvice Lakes – Zadar
Zadar is one of the most charming old Dalmatian cities dating back to Roman times. Steeped in history, see the Roman Forum, St Donatus Church, the reconstructed Romanesque St Grisigono’s Church, St Mary’s Bell Tower and St Anastasia Cathedral. Take a stroll along its beautiful promenade Sea Organ & Greetings to the Sun, a sound and light spectacle and an award winning architectural space. Afternoon is at leisure before dinner at a local Dalmatian restaurant. (B, D)
DAY 12 Zadar – Pag – Nin – Zadar
Today visit the Island of Pag for a tasting of the famous Pag cheese and on return, make a stop at the island town of Nin, where the smallest cathedral in the world is located. Return to Zadar for an afternoon at leisure. Dinner is at the hotel. (B, T, D)
DAY 13 Zadar – Krka – Stankovci – Zadar
Today discover the Krka Waterfalls National Park. See the natural beauty of the largest of the seven waterfalls – Skradinski Buk on Krka River. Visit the authentically restored ensemble of small stone houses, workshop, exhibits and watermills, and enjoy a beautiful walk through forest pathways and wooden bridges. Later lunch is at an authentic ethno style restaurant. Return to Zadar for an evening at leisure. (B, L)
DAY 14 Zadar – Šibenik – Trogir – Split
As you depart Zadar you will travel along the Dalmatian coastline where your first stop is Šibenik. Discover the oldest Croatian city on the Adriatic and Croatia’s most beautiful monument St James Cathedral. Continue to Trogir, a UNESCO World Heritage protected historic stone town which is often described as an open-air museum. See the Cathedral of St Lawrence and the beautiful Kamerlengo Tower. This evening enjoy a walk on the Split Riva following a Dalmatian dinner experience. Overnight in Split. (B, D)
DAY 15 Split
Following breakfast our coach takes us to Split Port to join our cruise. If you are not continuing on the cruise you will be transferred to Split Airport for your onward travel. Boarding begins from 1400HRS. After settling in, enjoy a guided tour of Split, a historic town under UNESCO protection and part of the world heritage with an abundance of Roman architecture. See the magnificent Diocletian Palace, once inhabited by the Roman Emperor. Later return to the ship for a welcome meet & greet cocktail reception onboard. (B, D)
DAY 16 Split – Bol – Hvar
Swim at the most famous beach in Croatia, Zlatni Rat near Bol on the Island of Brač. Lunch is onboard at the Pakleni Islands, near the Island of Hvar. Hvar is the longest and sunniest island in the Adriatic famous for its lavender and scenic beauty. Enjoy a presentation of lavender products and a tour of the town’s historical landmarks – the Renaissance Cathedral with its original tower and the oldest community theatre in Europe. Take a walk to the Spanish Fortress overlooking the harbour for lovely scenic views. This evening explore Hvar with its numerous restaurants, bars and cafes open long into the night. (B, L)
DAY 17 Hvar – Biševo – Vis
Cruise towards Biševo to visit the Blue Cave, a magnificent natural phenomenon. Visit to the caves are weather dependent. Vis was once a naval base and closed to the public. Due to this isolation, Vis has a special charm. Try some exquisite wine sorts in one of the Vis traditional wineries. If interested, visit the remains of the Roman thermal place, city museum or simply take a walk enjoying the views of the beautiful Villae Rusticae situated along the waterfront. (B, L, T)
DAY 18 Vis – Korčula
Cruise towards Korčula the birthplace of Marco Polo. Lunch is in a secluded bay enroute. Afternoon arrival followed by a guided walking tour of this enchanting medieval coastal town. A fish bone street pattern design was used in Korčula Old Town to reduce effects of wind and sun and provide citizens with sheltered and comfortable accommodation. There are many wonderful restaurants to choose as well as bars and clubs for those looking for evening entertainment. Optional excursion to small village near Korčula for real local experience where you will enjoy dinner and hear about history and local life.
DAY 19 Korčula – Mljet
Continue to the Island of Mljet. The legend says Greek hero Odysseus spent years on this island when he was captured by the nymph Calypso. Join the Cruise Director for a stroll to the famous saltwater lakes in the National Park and enjoy a boat ride to St Mary Isle to visit an ancient Benedictine monastery, an old abbey and a church from the 12th century. Alternatively, you can rent kayaks, bicycles, scooters or convertible cars to roam around the National Park or island. Dinner onboard and overnight in Polača or Pomena. (B, L, D)
DAY 20 Mljet – Slano – Ston – Slano
Depart to Slano a peaceful fishermen’s village and the starting point to Ston, another, once fortified small town, famous for its oysters. After exploring the town’s medieval ramparts, a short coastal walk leads us to an oyster farm to learn more about oysters and tasting this delicious treat. Transfer to the ship for Captain’s farewell dinner with entertainment & music. (B, L, T, D)
DAY 21 Slano – Dubrovnik
The charm of Dubrovnik are the buildings that have remained from the time of the old Dubrovnik Republic. Enjoy a lunch cruise along the Dubrovnik City Walls before docking in Gruž Port. Transfer to the Old Town for a guided walking tour. Take the cable car from the Old Town to Mount Srđ to enjoy scenic views of the walls and Elaphiti Islands. For those with more enthusiasm we recommend a walk along the city walls. (B, L)
DAY 22 Dubrovnik
Check out is by 0900HRS. Say farewell to your crew and fellow travellers. For those continuing to Montenegro and Bosnia & Herzegovina, you will be met and transferred for the next step of your journey. For those of you returning home, or travelling onwards you will be transferred to Dubrovnik Airport. We are sure you will have made many friends and have a wealth of memories to treasure and take home with you. Sretan Put. (B)
VIP Cabins are on the Main or Upper Deck. Upper Deck Cabins are above the Main Deck. Lower Deck Cabins are in the hull of the ship, below the Main Deck. All cabins are allocated according to availability. Most port arrivals are in the late afternoon. Cruising time is approximately 4-5 hours a day. Guests are obliged to follow ship rules. Due to specific mooring conditions and requirements in some Croatian Ports, ships are moored side by side. This makes it necessary to cross from one ship to the other where there are gaps in between each ship. Special care must be taken at all times when crossing between the vessels and guests do this at their own risk. Crew assistance will be given to those needing and requesting it. Cruises are not recommended for those in wheelchairs or with limited mobility.
Booking Terms & Conditions
Deposits: Upon confirmation a non-refundable deposit of $1,500 per person is payable. Final Payment: Final payment is due no later than 60 days prior to departure from New Zealand. Prices: All prices are in NZ$ based on twin share per person. Airfares and any costs not stated are not included. Solo Travellers: To guarantee a private room, solo travellers must book the ‘single use’ price. If you agree to share with another passenger of the same gender you will pay only the ‘twin share’ price. Group Size: Tour & Cruise – up to 25. Cruise only – up to 36/38. Tour Arrangements: We reserve the right to alter the routing, change accommodation and services if required. The cruise operator reserves the right to alter the route due to weather or other conditions and cancel or change the ship if necessary. Travel Insurance: It is a requirement of this travel arrangement that all travellers must take out a fully comprehensive travel insurance for the full duration of this trip. Contact us for more information and full booking terms & conditions.
Extras and Add Ons
Add Sightseeing & Excursions
Insurance is required for this tour. We’ll be happy to provide a quote or you’ll need evidence of your own insurance.