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Croatia Discovery Tour

Visiting: SPLIT – ŠOLTA – BRAČ – PAKLENI ISLANDS – HVAR – VIS – KORČULA – MLJET – DUBROVNIK

Visiting Croatia for the first time is a life-changing experience. To visit time and again is to re-affirm life. Blessed with magnificent scenery and incredible history and enriched with folk traditions and delicious regional foods and wines, here is a region so divine that it has been named one of the best travel destinations in the world. Mediterranean, European, and Balkan influences have formed an ancient and distinctive culture throughout its pastoral countryside to its shimmering coastlines. Powerful mountain ranges have carved legacies in their midst while fairy tale castles and walled seaside villages stand as a testimony to its tumultuous past. This gorgeous and peaceful land gained independence in 1990’s and beckons passionate travelers from all over the globe. From its lush national parks teeming with flora and fauna and stunning waterfalls to its glistening chain of lavender and citrus scented islands in the sun drenched Adriatic Sea, this is truly one of the most beautiful spots on Earth. A journey to this culturally rich area is a lovely and indelible memory that lives with you forever.

Day 1  SPLIT

Olives, indigenous aromatic plants, brilliancy of white stone against the verdant vegetation and the towering mountain massif of Biokovo whose spurs reach all the way to the sea – yes, this is indeed an exceptional part of the country, and its beauty is made all the more enchanting by numerous historic events and monuments, and cultural manifestations. When, in the year 305, the Roman Emperor Diocletian, who ruled the entire world at that time, decided to build his leisure time abode – in which he intended to spend the rest of his life – he had no doubt as to exactly where build to it. In the very heart of Dalmatia, in the bay of Aspalathos (Split), well protected from the sea by the islands of the Split archipelago, and defended on its landward side by high mountains, Diocletian created a special point on the map of the Adriatic: the future city of Split.

Itinerary:

  • Arrival to Split, meeting with your chauffeur for a private transfer from Split Airport to your centrally situated hotel in Split
  • Check in at your hotel and relax before you meet your guide for an introduction to heritage and history of charming Split during your Exclusive Adventures Croatia Taste of Split evening walking tour. On this tour, you will have the chance to experience local culture and food traditions.
  • We shall take you to taste Split in the true meaning of the word –  we will take you to the different food stops where you will taste local food.
  • Your first stop is a truly traditional Dalmatian snack – prosciutto, cheese, and homemade bread.
  • The second stop will offer you a unique olive oil tasting. In this oil bar, you will enjoy the flavors and scents of locally grown olive oil.  If you feel brave enough you can have a blind date with Croatian olive oil and try to guess which olive oil are you tasting.
  • After this Dalmatian basics, you will end your evening in a cool restaurant in the city center (on your own)
  • Time at leisure and an overnight in Split

 

Day 2

SPLIT – ŠOLTA – SPLIT

Although Solta is the closest island to Split, just 45 minutes by ferry, it remained a place of pristine natural beauty. With only 1,500 year-round residents, 24 bays and natural beauty, Solta is a place where you can find peace and tranquility wherever you wander. But the island is more than just a collection of sleepy villages. First mentioned by the Greeks as Olinta, for most of its history, Solta was a wealthy “province” of Split – whether it was the Roman Emperor Diocletian who had a “summer” home here as well as a private fish farm (!), or the wealthy Cindro and Cipiko families. The island is still famed for its olives, honey and wine.   

Remains of Solta’s Roman, Gothic and other historical periods are everywhere, but you need to take the time to see behind the picturesque and charming to find them. 

Even the simplest stone house and winding village road can be a surprising treat.  Stop and look closely at that graceful archway over a konoba (the ground floor room used for storage, wine-making and olive oil); a pair of gorgeous weather-washed blue wood window shutters; a hand-made iron door latch; the way the stone has been laid on the roof of a small outbuilding that was once used for donkeys and other livestock. Even when restored, the charming original details of these timeless homes never cease to give pleasure. 

It’s the perfect day trip from Split or Trogir to enjoy the groves and mill and then go for a swim before returning back to your hotel.

Itinerary:

  • Breakfast at the hotel
  • A full day sailing to the “Gates of Split”, the channel between the islands of Solta and Brac used by all mariners since the early Greeks, with visits to one of the most beautiful and hidden coves on the south side of island of Solta for swimming and then to the village of Bobovišća on the western side of island of Brac.   After mooring, you will have free time to see a fascinating castle on the island dating back to the 18th century. Only minutes away from the boat, you can also visit the tower above Bobovišća for a spectacular view of the surrounding area. A glorious day at sea!
  • Return to Split, time at leisure and an overnight in Split

 

Day 3  SPLIT – BRAČ – SPLIT

Brač is the largest among the central Dalmatian islands, and also the highest among Adriatic island with 778 meters. Symbol of the island is Zlatni rat in Bol, on the island’s south side – one of the most beautiful beaches in the entire Adriatic. Brac quarries are the symbol of the island. from there stone is taken out since the time of Roman rule until today. The stone from Brac is known for its quality and whiteness, and it was used to build some of the most important buildings, including the White House in Washington (USA).

Itinerary:

  • Breakfast at the hotel and meeting with your skipper for a private full day excursion to Bol & Golden Horn
  • Return to Split for an overnight

 

Day 4

SPLIT – PAKLENI ISLANDS – HVAR

Pakleni islands archipelago, a labyrinth of several smaller islands that offer perfect bays for swimming and snorkeling.

Paklinski islands group are situated in front of Hvar town and they tend to use like a large town park and town port breakwater.

The lavender island that Conde Nast’s signature travel magazine called “one of the “best 10 islands in the world”. A vacation on the lavender island of Hvar means extraordinary experiences every day – from visiting an ancient olive grove and learning about what Homer called “liquid gold”, taking a Jeep safari to discover hidden inland Hvar to exploring a castle, visiting the oldest theater in Europe or tasting spectacular wine and local delicacies at an award-winning vineyard.

Itinerary:

  • Today you will be sailing towards Hvar, known as the sunniest island in Croatia, famous for its endless fields of lavender and rosemary, its beautiful coast and lovely historical towns.
  • Exploring the Paklinski Islands one cove at a time will make you believe that surprises are waiting around every corner, both above and beneath the surface!  Every cove is a microcosm, a wonder of nature, a story in itself.
  • Arrival in Hvar and accommodation in your hotel
  • In the late afternoon, meeting with your guide for a tour that takes you to a picturesque and abandoned village, we will walk around the village and check the abandoned ruins, as water cisterns, cooperative, church, old mill, … till we will reach the restored family property, meet our host and try what he and his family cooked. After our amazing dinner and tranquility in the village will go back to Hvar town.
  • As the sun sets down, Hvar becomes alive with people; we recommend a cocktail at one of the numerous bars and terraces around the beautifully illuminated harbor.
  • Overnight in Hvar

 

Day 5

HVAR – PAKLENI ISLANDS – VIS – HVAR

Itinerary:

  • Our next destination is the island of Vis, which was, because of its unique geographical position, a strategic harbor for the navy and closed to the public until recently. Because of this isolation, Vis has a special charm of ‘the Mediterranean as it once was’ which makes it really interesting to see.
  • Visit the south coast of island Vis and the “Green Cave”, unique Stiniva bay, Porat beach, and Budihovac islet.
  • Cruise through the most beautiful part of island Vis, enjoy in a unique atmosphere and natural attractions.
  • Besides natural beauty and mystique, Stiniva bay is special for its characteristic tiny sea entrance between high monumental rocks. The Green Cave is the biggest sea cave of the Vis archipelago. It’s characteristic because of the sunlight beam coming through a hole on the Cave’s top, spreading sparkling green light in the sea of the Cave. Budihovac islet is the perfect place to lie on the sun and swim in peace.
  • Return o Hvar for an overnight

 

Day 6  HVAR – KORČULA

Korčula was first mentioned as early as the 10th c. in works of Byzantine historians under the name “Stone Town”. It flourished under the Venetian government and later on it spread around the town walls. But in spite of all that, it is still the most famous as the birthplace of Marco Polo who was probably born here in 1254, and reminders of him can be seen all around the town, including the extremely interesting Marco Polo Museum which is something you definitively don`t want to miss when visiting this beautiful Dalmatian town. Today it`s a town where you can vividly feel the Mediterranean spirit of people who live and work in this mixture of Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque architecture. 

Itinerary:

  • Breakfast at the hotel and check out
  • Private speed boat transfer from Hvar to Korčula
  • Explore the town of Korcula with its long history, ingenious building strategies, peculiar building layout and a legend of a great merchant traveler Marco Polo that was born and spent his childhood in the streets of Korcula.
  • Overnight in Korcula

 

Day 7  KORČULA – MLJET – DUBROVNIK

Some people say that Homer, while describing the enchanted island of Ogigia, Ulysses and the nymph Calypso, had the island of Mljet in mind. True or not – this island is today certainly a paradise for those who enjoy untouched nature and absolute tranquility. The main attractions of the island are two saltwater lakes completely surrounded by a thick pinewood forest. The Island of Mljet is one of Croatia’s National Parks. It’s a thin strip of land some 32 km long and never more than 3 km wide dramatically running parallel to the Pelješac peninsula. 

The most visited part of the Island is the green and unspoiled west, where untouched Mediterranean vegetation and two saltwater lakes (Malo jezero – Small lake and Veliko jezero – Big lake) provide the focus of the Mljet National Park. Both lakes are encircled by foot-and cycle paths.

Feel free to swim in the lakes. A boat from Veliko jezero will take you to a picturesque St. Mary’s Island, where you will be rewarded by a stunning view of the monastery established by the Benedictines in the 12th century.

There will be plenty of time for swimming, strolling around the lakes or having lunch in one of the charming local restaurants.

The sheer geographical position of the Elaphite islands offers guests the perfect opportunity to island hop. These untouched islands are a wonder of nature and also provide an experience of true island life, Dalmatian style. Situated to the north-west of Dubrovnik this group of islands is made up of eight islands, the majority of which are uninhabited, and with this full-day excursion, you will have the opportunity to visit three of them – Koločep, Šipan, and Lopud. Take a dip in the crystal clear seas, stroll in the shade of Mediterranean vegetation, explore quaint hamlets or simply indulge your taste buds with local cuisines, the choice is yours.

Koločep island is the closest to Dubrovnik. On the island, there are two villages – Upper and Lower Forehead. Unlike most other islands in the Adriatic, Koločep is rich in fertile soil and water and is full of lush vegetation. Since ancient times Koločep is known as an island of fishermen and coral, and today is the fishery area, especially rich in lobsters.

Lopud Island is located northwest of Dubrovnik. It is the second largest of Elaphiti islands and is located between Sipan and Koloče. In the Middle Ages, it was named the Insula media ‘(Latin for Middle Island). Lopud Island is the most developed Elaphit. Popular sandy beach Šunj is often the destination of hikers and swimmers. At each step on the island, various medieval fortresses and chapels merge, which illustrate the history of this island. Lopud island is peaceful and is suitable for holidays in silence among the cypress trees, palm trees.

Island Sipan is the largest island in the group Elaphiti archipelago. It was inhabited in prehistoric times. The interior of the island spread karst fields which, opening up to the east and west, create deep bays. On the shores of West Bay lies village Luka Šipanska, while on the eastern shores of the bay has developed a village called Suđurad. On the island of Sipan is a lot of private houses with apartments built in the style typical of this area.

Itinerary:

  • Breakfast at the hotel and check out
  • Private transfer from Korčula to Dubrovnik on a motor yacht with a visit to Mljet National Park (on your own) and a cruise around the Elaphiti islands with occasional stops for a walk or a swim
  • Perfect for anyone looking to enjoy the fresh air and bask in the sun rather than in a contained car, this route to Dubrovnik is a pleasant alternative for a private excursion with a beautiful speedboat or yacht from Korčula.  Cruise through 50 nautical miles towards Dubrovnik (2 hours – direct one way) while enjoying the ravishing scenery of surrounding islands
  • Optional lunch stop at Koločep island, for a meal at a local restaurant
  • Arrival to Dubrovnik, time at leisure and overnight

 

Day 8  DUBROVNIK

Dubrovnik is a medieval city on the Croatian side of the Adriatic coastline and treasure trove of cultural, historical monuments that were created throughout its thousand-year existence.   In the past, it was a City-Republic, and alongside Venice one of the most famous cultural-economic centers on the Mediterranean. In more recent times, it has become the center of modern cultural and tourist events: a city of summer festivals – an international parade of top musical and theatrical achievements, a city of museums and galleries. These values have turned Dubrovnik into a place that offers a rich selection of various experiences and excitement, but also a complete holiday in a quiet and calming, mild Mediterranean ambiance and wonderful seaside landscapes.

Itinerary:

  • Meeting with your driver for a private transfer to Dubrovnik Airport
  • Departure flight, booked on your own

 

Includes:

  • ALL PRIVATE and ENGLISH SPEAKING GUIDES AND DRIVERS
  • VAT TAX INCLUDED
  • 24hr concierge and in Croatia assistance
  • Private transfer from Split airport to Split hotel
  • Exclusive Adventures Croatia Taste of Split basic tour with wine- Included: Walking tour Split, English speaking tour guide, insurance, pick up & drop off, a meal in each food stop (1st stop – prosciutto & cheese and bread, 2nd stop – olive oil tasting)
  • 3 nights in a Split Hotel 4, double room, BB basis\
  • Half day sailboat excursion to Šolta island (Included: skipper, refreshment)
  • Private speed boat full day excursion to Brač island (Included: speed boat, skipper, fuel, refreshment)
  • Half day sailboat excursion to Hvar island with a stop at Pakleni islands (Included: skipper, transfer, refreshment)
  • The abandoned ethno – eco-village tour (Included: pick up, guide/driver, car transfer, dinner with wine in the abandoned village)
  • 2 nights in a Hvar Hotel 4*, double room, sea view, BB basis
  • Unique Tornado speed boat excursion to the south coast of island Vis with a visit to the “Blue Cave” (weather permitting), unique Stiniva bay, Porat beach, and Budihovac islet.
  • Included: speed boat transfer, skipper, fuel, VAT, insurance, safety gear / Not included in price: entrance fees, food/drink
  • Private speed boat transfer from Hvar to Korčula Included: skipper, transfer, refreshment
  • Private walking tour of Old Town Korcula with a tasting of traditional cukarin cakes (Included: English speaking guide, cake tasting)
  • 1 night in a Korčula Hotel 4* double room, BB basis
  • Private transfer from Korčula to Dubrovnik on a motor yacht with a cruise around Mljet island and the Elaphiti islands (Incl. Personal Skipper /Crew and Boat at Your Full Disposal)
  • A three-course meal at a local restaurant (drinks not included)
  • 1 night in a Dubrovnik Hotel 5*, double room, sea view, BB basis
  • Private transfer from Dubrovnik to Dubrovnik Airport

 

OPTIONAL:

Three-course lunch at a renowned local restaurant in Palmižana bay (drinks not included)

Wine pairing experience with a menu tailor-made by boutique hotel restaurant chefs

 

Program does not include:  

  • Meals and drinks not mentioned above 
  • Airfare, Travel Insurance 
  • Additional excursions and / or services not mentioned in the program
  • Personal expenses (internet, telephone, mini bar etc.)
  • Tips and porterage services

 

ADD ON TO LAND & CRUISE ITINERARY:

Day 0

SPLIT

Itinerary:

  • Time at leisure and overnight in Split

 

Day 8

DUBROVNIK – KONAVLE – DUBROVNIK

Agritourism offers the visitors an opportunity to familiarize themselves with agricultural areas, rural farm activities, local products, traditional cuisine and the daily lives of the local inhabitants. Dubrovnik visitors can experience cultural elements of the region while showing respect for the environment and tradition. Other than for entertainment purposes, Agritourism also brings the visitor closer to nature and rural farming activities, which the visitor can then participate in and experience the joys of adventure, discovering and learning.

Obtaining the necessary ingredients and preparing traditional meals, dishes and refreshments with the help of the hostess of the house, listening to stories about the people and the land during dinner is what awaits you.

Itinerary:

  • Breakfast at the hotel
  • Meeting with your driver for a half day cooking class in Konavle area with traditional lunch. Learn how to prepare homemade food the same way as our ancestors did centuries ago. After meeting in Dubrovnik we’ll drive along amazing coastline stopping on several panoramic points to take unique photos of Dubrovnik and surrounding, with a visit to an old flour mill or an olive press instead.
  • Upon arrival to a typical rural villa, welcome drinks and snacks will be served. You may pick fresh vegetables for your cooking lesson straight from our garden! Depending on the season, you’ll prepare meals like: “sac” – lamb or veal cooked under the iron bell; “zelena menestra” – green cabbage with dry meat; skewers on laurel sticks; smoked bacon and goat cheese… Prepare your meal over the open fire, dig your fingers into fresh dough, taste some olive oil and blend it in rural ambiance to get the true feeling of Dubrovnik countryside. This tour is created to present the local ambiance and authentic feeling of life in the village. 
  • Return transfer to your hotel, time at leisure
  • Private walking tour of Old Town Dubrovnik accompanied by an English speaking guide (entrance fees not included)
  • Time at leisure and an overnight in Dubrovnik

 

Day 9

DUBROVNIK – MONTENEGRO – DUBROVNIK

This notable coastal region is of primary interest to tourists in Montenegro. The Montenegrin Adriatic coast is 295 km long, with 72 km of beaches, and with many well-preserved ancient old towns. The main attractions along the north coast are: The old Town of Herceg Novi, The old town of  Kotor – listed with UNESCO world heritage sites, Boka Kotorska (Bay of Kotor), with the ancient small town of Perast, The old town of Budva – a well preserved old town,  Sveti Stefan –  a small island hamlet turned into a luxury hotel etc. In the UNESCO-protected town of Kotor enjoy a guided tour and lunch.

Itinerary:

  • Breakfast at the hotel
  • Meeting with your driver for a full day excursion to Kotor where a local, professional guide awaits you for a private walking tour of Old Town Kotor (entrance fees and taxes included) and a nearby Perast -fascinating town in the Bay of Kotor (Boka Kotorska) rich maritime history, countless baroque stone palaces and two jewel-like islets in front.
  • Time at leisure and lunch at a local, traditional restaurant (on your own)
  • Return to Dubrovnik and time at leisure
  • Overnight in Dubrovnik

 

ADD ON Includes:

  • ALL PRIVATE and ENGLISH SPEAKING GUIDES AND DRIVERS
  • VAT TAX INCLUDED
  • 24hr concierge and in Croatia assistance
  • 1 night in a Split Hotel 4*, double room, BB basis
  • 2 nights in a Dubrovnik Hotel 5*, double room, sea view, BB basis
  • Half day private cooking class in Konavle Valley followed by lunch in a local rural estate (Cooking class includes: transportation, welcome drink & snacks, all food & drink served during the class)
  • English speaking guide for a private walking tour of Old Town Dubrovnik (entrance fees not included) with round trip transfers
  • Full day private excursion to Kotor (Included: car with private English speaking chauffeur, gas & parking fees, experienced & licensed tour guide in Kotor, entrance fees for major sights)

 

Program does not include:  

  • Meals and drinks not mentioned above 
  • Airfare, Travel Insurance 
  • Additional excursions and / or services not mentioned in the program
  • Personal expenses (internet, telephone, mini bar etc.)
  • Tips and porterage services

 

Dates and Details:

Prices are based on number of passengers traveling and dates of travel

Hotels are not guaranteed until confirmed