Croatia & The Dalmatian Coast
Saturday, August 30, 2014 at 10:00 AM - Sunday, September 7, 2014 at 10:00 AM (EDT)
San Francisco, California
London, United Kingdom
Croatia & The Dalmatian Coast
Venice, Trieste, Split, and Dubvrovnik
Hiking, Biking, Sailing, and more...
*Nightlife in 3 hot-spot cities: Trieste, Split, and Dubvrovnik (of Game of Thrones fame)
*Plitvice Lakes National Park and Krka National Park
*Paklenica National Park - The River Canyon Hike
*Island hopping off the coastline - Hvar & Korčula
*Stunning beaches of the Dalmatian coast
Pricing: (Land only)
$1,195 - Early Bird Special - make deposit by May 1
$1,295 - make deposit by June 1
$1,395 - make deposit by July 1
$1,495 - thereafter - but please note, there are only up to 16 spots available for this trip:
All ground transportation and airport pick up/ drop off Venice and/ or Milano
8 nights accommodations (Breakfast included where provided by the hotel)
Paklenica, Plitvice, and Krka National Park Entrance Fees
Ferries and Catamaran Transfers, Adriatic Sea
Island Hopping: Hvar and Vela Luka, Korčula
Excursions to Ston and Trogir
City tour Dubvrovnik
Airport Departure Taxes (if any)
Personal spending; Lunches and Dinners
Tipping - $45 - Trip Leaders, Guides, Hotel Staff, and Activities
Friday, August 29 - Departure from New York
New York, JFK - Overnight flight to Venice, suggested flights:
Air Berlin or British: currently running around $1,000
Alternative flight option - New York to Milan: Lufthansa, Delta, Alitalia @ $675 !!
Saturday, August 30 - Venice & Trieste
Arrive in Venice: Private shuttle pick up and transfer to Venice: Enjoy Lunch on Plaza San Marco
Grab a fine Italian gelato for dessert as you stroll the streets for a few hours
(If you fly via Milano; we will transfer you directly to Trieste, you will skip Venice)
Afternoon transfer to Trieste: Evening open to explore this marvelous gem on the Italian coast
Suggested group dinner - drinks about town - overnight Trieste
Venice, Italy - Venice is renowned for the beauty of its setting, its architecture and its artworks. The city and lagoon are listed as World Heritage Sites. The Republic of Venice was a major maritime power during the Middle Ages and Renaissance, and a staging area for the Crusades and the Battle of Lepanto, as well as a very important center of commerce (especially silk, grain, and spice) and art in the 13th century up to the end of the 17th century. This made Venice a wealthy city throughout most of its history. It is also known for its several important artistic movements, especially the Renaissance period. Some of the numerous attractions in Venice, such as St Mark's Basilica, the Grand Canal, and the Piazza San Marco.
Trieste, Italy - Trieste was one of the oldest parts of the Habsburg Monarchy from 1382 until 1918. In the 19th century, it was the most important port of one of the Great Powers of Europe. As a prosperous seaport in the Mediterranean region, Trieste became the fourth largest city of the Austro-Hungarian Empire (after Vienna, Budapest, and Prague). Today, the city is in one of the richest regions of Italy, and has been a great centre for shipping, through its port (Port of Trieste), shipbuilding and financial services.
Sunday, August 31 - Transfer to Plitvice Lakes, Croatia
After breakfast, we will transfer to Plitvice National Park, Croatia's best-known and most-visited natural attraction: UNESCO World Heritage. Enjoy lunch and explore the beautiful grounds of the Park: Laced with waterfalls and studded with turquoise lakes. We will tour the park on foot and boat. This lush valley has 16 terraced lakes strung together by waterfalls and miles of pleasant plank walks. Countless cascades and strangely clear and colorful water make this park a misty natural wonderland. We will take a 20-minute boat ride along the park's biggest lake, Lake Kozjak, which connects lower and Upper Lakes. The lower half of the Upper Lakes is the most striking area in the park.
Late afternoon transfer to Split, Croatia's largest coastal city.
Suggested group dinner - drinks about town - overnight Split
Split - Centered around the ancient Roman Palace of the Emperor Diocletian and its bay and port. Split is by far the largest Dalmatian city and the second-largest city of Croatia. An intraregional transport hub, the city is a link to numerous Adriatic islands and the Apennine peninsula, as well as a popular tourist destination. Split is also one of the oldest cities in the area. While it is traditionally considered just over 1,700 years old counting from the construction of Diocletian's Palace in AD 305, archaeological research relating to the original founding of the city as the Greek colony of Aspálathos (Aσπάλαθος) in the 6th century BC, establishes the urban tradition of the area as being several centuries older.
Monday, September 1 - Open day in Split: Available options as follows:
Today we are a relaxing morning in which you can explore Split, relax at a café on the coast, or read a book at the beach:
Diocletian's Palace is one of Croatia's top sights - see picture at bottom of page - a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and a fascinating place to explore. If you're thinking palace like Versailles however, think again because it's really more like a city within a city.
The Beaches for Split: At Marjan (Splits major park area) situated at the peak of the Split peninsula you have several beaches all the way around mount Marjan.
1. Kašuni beach: is a pebble sand beach situated on the south side of the mount Marjan, from the centre you just follow the water for about 2-2.5 km
2. Kastelet beach is situated in the bay before Kašuni (500meter closer to center), this is also a pebble beach, but stones are small so you don’t necessary need any bathing shoes. On the beach there are several coffee bars and a snack bar, with affordable and good sandwiches. Again here there is no kiosk, so it is advisable to bring along water.
3. Bacvice: the beach below the Hotel Park, awarded the best beach in Split.
Explore by bike - Rent a bike and enjoy beautiful biking along Split's waterfront (Riva), continue to Marjan hill (approximately 7 km), climb to the top of the hill for great view on the Split town and surrounding islands. You can bike to the east side, along the coast to nearby village of Stobrec. Another great option from Split is to take a day tour to nearby islands of Solta, Brac, Hvar or Vis. You can take the bike on a regular ferry (they leave approximately every couple of hours in the summer season) and bike along quite roads and charming villages, explore great beaches and restaurants and return in the evening to Split!
Special excursion to Trogir - Trogir has a 2300 years of continuous urban tradition. Its culture was created under the influence of old Greeks, Romans, and Venetians. Trogir has a high concentration of palaces, churches, and towers, as well as a fortress on a small island, dating back to the Hellenistic period
Trogir is the best-preserved Romanesque-Gothic complex not only in the Adriatic, but in all of Central Europe. Trogir's medieval core, surrounded by walls, comprises a preserved castle and tower.
The most important sites include:
Historical city core, with about 10 churches and numerous buildings from 13th century
The city gate (17th century) and city walls (15th century) and the Fortress Kamerlengo (15th century)
The Duke's Palace (13th century) and the big and small palaces Cipiko from the 15th century
The Cathedral (13th century) with the Portal of Master Radovan, the unique work of this Croatian artist
Explore by boat - Daily sailing tours from Split to Brac or other nearby destinations, such as Ciovo Island - Cruising on a traditional Dalmatian wooden fishing boat to Čiovo Island. Possibility to go swimming and enjoy a local seafood restaurant. After dinner, we will enjoy the sunset over the Adriatic Sea and return to Split at 9pm.
End of day, suggested group dinner - drinks about town - overnight Split
Tuesday, September 2 - Split to Hvar
We will have an early start to the day to catch our Catamaran ferry ride to Hvar
Pick one of the many island activities: explore on bike, hike/ walk, or relax on the beach or scuba dive
End of day, suggested group dinner - drinks about town - overnight Hvar
Hvar - Gently rolling hills painted a brilliant purple by the fertile flowers, lush vineyards nestling at the foot of ragged mountains, gorgeous beaches with tiny inlets and secluded coves, luscious restaurants, boutiques, and a vibrant nightlife amidst the medieval streets of Hvar Town are just a few of the treats to enjoy on this dream of an island. Imposing fortifications hover above the fluid blend of grey stone and orange cascading roofs. The remains of walls built by a long list of invaders descend towards the wide promenade edging the brilliant blue sea and the quaint fishing harbor. Marble streets reveal one of the largest squares in Dalmatia, Trg Sveti Stjepana as well as the prized Cathedral of St. Stjepan and the Renaissance theatre. Hvar Town may be the most stunning town on the island but Starigrad, the oldest village on the island, and Jelsa, as well as a smattering of small villages, dotting the coast or nestled in the lush interior are well worth a visit.
Wednesday, September 3 - Hvar to Dubrovnik
After breakfast, we'll embark on our ferry transfer to Dubrovnik via Vela Luka, on the island of Korčula.
It has an average of over 2500 hours of sunny weather annually and and Marco Polo may have been born there. Korčula town has no public transportation. The town is small enough to walk everywhere. The layout of the town is quite simple, with a single avenue as the spine bisecting the village with roads branching from this central avenue toward the sea. A pedestrian avenue circles the village as well.
Bike rentals are available.
Late afternoon or evening transfer to Dubrovnik
End of day, suggested group dinner - drinks about town - overnight Dubrovnik
Dubrovnik: Backdrop for many scenes of Game of Thrones - (Latin: Ragusa) was built on maritime trade. In the Middle Ages it became the only city-state in the Adriatic to rival Venice. Supported by its wealth and skilled diplomacy, the city achieved a remarkable level of development during the 15th and 16th centuries.
Dubrovnik is steeped in stunning architecture and sculptural detail, and boasts spectacular churches, monasteries, museums, and fountains. A multitude of typical towns and excursions include: The Elaphiti Islands, the attractive town of Cavtat,the Konavle valley, Mljet Island, Korčula Island,Ston and Peljesac Peninsula.
The neighboring towns of Kotor and Perast in Montenegro or Mostar in Bosnia and Herzegovina also make for intriguing day trips.
Thursday, September 4 - Dubrovnik
The Old Town can be comparatively difficult to navigate on first appearances, as it really is a warren of little streets. There are however signs at the entrances to many of these streets advertising what businesses, shops, restaurants and accommodation are to be found in that direction. That being said, some of these signs appear to be either intentionally misleading or woefully out of date. For example, there is no office of any bus company within the Old Town, despite what the signs may say. The city is completely pedestrianized and easily small enough to get around on foot, some of the streets are a little steep though.
The City Walls - Locally Guided Trip - We will head out to explore and walk on the walls around the old town, great views. It is highly recommended to visit the walls during the early morning hours or the late afternoon hours during mid-summer months as it can become hot. Dubrovnik is surrounded by City Walls which are 2 km long and for which it is famous all around the world. Within the City Walls you will see Fort Minceta and Fort St. John’s on the south-eastern side. Also, within the City Walls are Fort Lawrence at Pile and Fort Revelin at Ploce. The main entrance to the City Walls is by the Inner Pile Gates. Minceta Fort is one of the most beautiful cultural attractions in Dubrovnik. It is situated on the northwest side of the city inside the City Walls.
Cafes, Clubs, Bars - There are numerous cafes throughout the Old Town and the entire city with prices varying according to the location (particularly, those located on the Stradun are by far the most expensive but you are paying for the ambiance and people-watching as well). Most cafes serve a wide variety of drinks all day. Numerous clubs and bars to make for a splendid night life.
End of day, suggested group dinner - drinks about town - overnight Dubrovnik
Friday, September 5 - Dubrovnik to Zadar via Krka National Park
We will have an early start to the day as we drive to our tour of Krka National Park. We will first visit the small historical town of Sibenik before we get into our boat to tour the park. This forested area comes complete with seven waterfalls, islets, lakes and rapids, water mills and a couple of ancient monasteries. We will visit Skradinski buk, the park’s tallest waterfall, with 17 cascades running the length of 800 meters. Here is where we will be able to take a refreshing dip in the small emerald pool at the bottom of the waterfall.
Bring your swim gear and jump into the water!
Afternoon or evening transfer to Zadar.
End of day, suggested group dinner - drinks about town - overnight Zadar
Saturday, September 6 - Zadar to Trieste via Paklenica National Park - The River Canyon
The Paklenica karst river canyon comprised of Mala (Small) and Velika (Big) Paklenica.
Hiking is the only way to really get to know Paklenica. The Park area contains 150–200 km of trails and paths, from those intended for tourists - easy - leading from Velika Paklenica Canyon to Manita peć cave, Lugarnica forest cottage and the mountain hut. And those intended for mountaineers - harder - leading to the highest peaks of Velebit. The trails in the Park are marked with boards and mountaineering signs.
Paklenica National Park is the most visited climbing site in Croatia, and the largest in Southeast Europe. The close proximity of seawater gives this climbing site a special charm, making Paklenica Riviera an ideal place to combine climbing and water sports. Today, there are over 360 equipped and improved routes of various difficulty levels and lengths within Paklenica’s climbing sites, so each climber can find to their liking. The main climbing season begins in spring and goes on until late autumn.
Afternoon or evening transfer to Trieste.
End of day, suggested group dinner - drinks about town - overnight Trieste
Sunday, September 7 - Return flight: Venice to New York
After breakfast, private shuttle transfer from Trieste to Venice and/ or Milano
(Depending on your flight times and chosen airport, you might have to skip breakfast)
Suggested flights: Aer Lingus - VCE 11:40am - JFK 7:40p
Dubrovnik: Backdrop for many scenes of Game of Thrones
New York to Venice: British or Air Berlin have good offers
New York to Milano: Lufhansa, Delta and/ or Alitalia - currently best offers
If you cancel more than 60 days before the date of travel, you would receive a refund minus $200
If you cancel less than 60 days before the date of travel, you would receive 75% refund
If you cancel less than 45 days before the date of travel, you would receive 50% refund
If you cancel less than 30 days before the date of travel, you would receive 25% refund
If you cancel less than 15 days before the date of travel, there won't be a refund possible unless we find replacement for you !
(We always highly recommend to take out travel insurance: www.travelex.com)
We are an energetic and friendly club dedicated to offering the best outdoor adventures. All of our events are designed to ensure that everyone is involved and has a great time. Whether it is hiking in a lush forest, canoeing down a crystal clear river or galloping on horseback along the sandy beaches, we offer a personalized approach so that you gain the most out of each trip. Our goal is to provide a simple, convenient way to escape the concrete jungle for a day of fresh air, fantastic views and memorable interaction with other like minded individuals who share a passion for the outdoors.