Hidden gems of Croatia
Kvarner & Istria 5 days
Istria “terra magica” and Amber islands
Kvarner islands were part of the ancient Amber Road that in antiquity connected all nations between the Baltic and the Mediterranean sea and were called the Elektrides (Amber islands) by Hellenic writers.
1st day: OPATIJA
Arrival to Opatija, tourist resort on the coast, with the longest tradition (170 years) in tourism in Croatia. In its well maintaned public gardens, there are plants and trees from all around the world. Restaurants, bars, cafeterias offer many possibilities to spend a nice evening. Welcome-dinner in a restaurant, located in the 19th century villa.
2nd day: OPATIJA – CRES – HIKING ST. SALVADOR – OPATIJA
Ferry boat to the beautyful island of Cres, which great richness of the botanical and animal world is a genuine challenge to all nature lovers. Ride to the biggest town of the island, the town of Cres. The panorama of present day Cres is marked with the medieval harbour, Gothic and Renessaince churches and noble families’ palaces and the remains of town walls. Snack and refreshment. Hiking on the path through the hundred years old olive gardens surrounded by stone fences (dry walls) untill the small church of St. Salvador. That is a point with the most beautiful view to the sea on the whole island. After coming back from the nature, typical lunch (lamb baked in traditional island’s way) in a nearby village is waiting for us. Return to Opatija by ferry boat. Free evening in Opatija.
3rd day: OPATIJA – MOTOVUN – TRUFFLE HUNT – GROŽNJAN
Visit of two most beautiful hilltop towns in Istria. First we ride to Motovun, an ancient Istrian town-monument, located atop a 277m high hill, whose present appearance dates back to the Middle ages. Walking around town walls, enjoy beautiful view to the surrounding hills, woods and green lands. Now the adventure begins in a small village of Paladini: we will try truffle hunting with the help of dogs, specially trained to find the underground mushroom using their sense of smell. Lunch with truffle-specialties by the family of truffle-hunters. Ride to Grožnjan, located on a 288 m high hill, today well-known as „town of arts“: there are frequent concerts, as well as painting exhibitions in numerous small art galleries. Free time for a walk or coffee „with a view“ in a small local cafeteria. Dinner in a restaurant in Opatija.
4th day: OPATIJA – KASTAV – TREASURE HUNT – SUNSET BOAT RIDE
Ride to Kastav, a beautiful hilltop town with the marvellous view to the sea, islands and the mountain of Ucka. Kastav was well known for its traditional craftmanship, today there are small museums: Vico’s coopery, Osojnak’s kettle workshop, File’s smithy and Idica’s bakery, the oldest wood-fired oven in Kastav, where fresh bread will be baked for us. Snack: prosciutto, cheese, olives, wine. Here, in the narrow and windy streets of the old town, we will have „treasure-hunt“. The winning team gets a special prize at the sunset boat ride along the coast which follows this evening. Stop in a small village on the coast and barbecue dinner with music. The food is grilled and served on the boat. Return to the hotel.
5th day: OPATIJA
The arrangement includes:
– 4 x overnight BB in hotel 4* in Opatija
– all transfers as in the program
– english speaking guide all days, assistance at the aiport as in the programme
– 2xdinner in restaurants (day 1 and 3)
– snack in Cres
– lamb lunch in Cres
– truffle hunting and lunch in Istria
– entrance Kastav museums
– snack in Kastav
– “treasure hunt” in Kastav
– sunset boat ride with barbecue dinner (fish or meat)