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Croatian Landscapes & Wine Cellars

This journey from the north of Croatia to the Dalmatian coastline offers a unique experience of the still undiscovered part of the world and its residents, rich historical and cultural heritage, and astonishing scenery. This kind of journey adds an element of the unexpected to life, the missing spice which exalts. Enjoy the adventure through this unique territory, meet the local culture and people, taste a wide range of awarded wines and homemade specialties, and admire the pristine nature of the area that stretches along the east coast of the Adriatic Sea.

Group size: 1+

TOUR HIGHLIGHTS

  • Authentic cuisine
  • Private tour
  • Individual approach
  • Private transportation
  • Local specialties
  • World Heritage Sites
  • Off the beaten path
  • Meeting the locals

TOUR DESCRIPTION

This journey from the north of Croatia to the Dalmatian coastline offers a unique experience of the still undiscovered part of the world and its residents, rich historical and cultural heritage, and astonishing scenery. This kind of journey adds an element of the unexpected to life, the missing spice which exalts. Enjoy the adventure through this unique territory, meet the local culture and people, taste a wide range of awarded wines and homemade specialties, and admire the pristine nature of the area that stretches along the east coast of the Adriatic Sea.

From the lush and verdant wine-growing areas of Istria in the west and Moslavina and Plješivica in the north of Croatia, across the unique natural phenomenon of Plitvice Lakes in the region of Lika, to one of historically most significant Croatian regions of Dalmatia, widely reputed for its awarded wines seized from the stony, sea-facing soil, this tour engages all your senses, allowing you to indulge in exquisite tastes of the noble beverage.

Treat yourself to a one-of-a-kind experience of Croatia and meet the local people whose vision, determination and hard work are as relentless as the soil they have been working for centuries, shaping a landscape in which a man feels at one with nature. Combining gastronomic delights with cultural landmarks and numerous leisure opportunities, you will get a comprehensive insight into this remarkable part of Europe and form memories which are bound to stay in your minds and hearts for a long, long time.

TOUR DURATION12 days/11 nights
PERIOD OF YEARMarch to December
ARRIVAL AIRPORTZagreb
DEPARTURE AIRPORTDubrovnik (or vice-versa)
TRAVEL VISASPassengers from EU and English speaking countries do not require Croatian Visa. For more information, please check the following link.
TRAVEL INSURANCEAdvisable and available on request
OVERNIGHT LOCATIONSZagreb, Rovinj, Zadar, Split, Pelješac and Dubrovnik
ACCOMMODATIONBoutique heritage hotel, villa or private apartment
TOUR STYLEOff the beaten path wine tour
TOUR PACEEasy
ACTIVITIESWalking & sightseeing, wine & food tastings
FEATURESMeeting the winemakers, flexible overnight locations, World Heritage sites, local cuisine
AVAILABLE OPTIONSThis tour can be self-driven, or a fully-guided tour

DAY 1  Franjo Tuđman Airport Zagreb / Arrival and introduction

Welcome to Croatia! Upon landing at Zagreb airport, you will be welcomed by our English-speaking driver and taken you to your accommodation in a comfortable air-conditioned vehicle.

After some free time for refreshment, an introductory wine tasting has been scheduled for you – the perfect beginning of your wine adventure through Croatia. Afterwards, experience the rich nightlife of Croatia’s capital.

DISTANCE COVERED:
 -km
15 km/30 min
 -nm
 cca.30 mins
OVERNIGHT: Zagreb
MEALS: D

DAY 2  Zagreb – Moslavina – Plešivica / Zagreb surroundings wine tour

On the first day of your wine safari you will visit 2 wine regions in the surroundings of Zagreb: Moslavina and Plešivica. Rich in natural beauties and agriculture, Moslavina is the first region we will travel to after pick-up from the hotel at 9 a.m., visiting a winery owned by a young family who combine modern technology with a long tradition of wine making. Their pride and joy are the wines made from the škrlet variety.

The day continues in Plešivica region, west of Zagreb, where we will visit two local wine-producing families, one adopting a more traditional approach to wine making and the other a relatively recent one that has revolutionised the production of wines from the local portugizac variety. Return to Zagreb is expected in the late afternoon.

DISTANCE COVERED: -km170 km/3 hrs -nm cca. 1 hrOVERNIGHT: ZagrebMEALS: BL

DAY 3  Zagreb – Rovinj / Explore places en route to Istria

Start the day by driving from continental Croatia to the biggest peninsula in the Adriatic Sea – Istria. Following a refreshment break in Fužine, your trip continues to a Baroque castle winery, where you will have your first foreign-domestic wine experience and your first meeting with famous Istrian Malvazija. Afterwards, your overnight destination – the magical town of Rovinj – is only a one hour’s drive away.

Once you reach this coastal architectural marvel, check in to your hotel and savour the lively atmosphere of the town’s cobbled streets, find your own little spot for dinner and watch the sun go down over the Adriatic Sea.

DISTANCE COVERED: -km270 km/4 hrs -nm cca. 1hrOVERNIGHT: RovinjMEALS: B

DAY 4  Rovinj – Motovun – Grožnjan / Explore Istria

Following breakfast, a lovely scenic drive through the verdant surroundings shall lead you to the charming hilltop town of Motovun, adorned with authentic galleries and shops lining its cobbled streets and squares, many small churches, monuments and loggias.

Continue towards a nearby boutique winery and agritourism estate and savour a homemade lunch made from locally grown ingredients, along with wine tasting and meeting the winemakers.

On the way back, explore the charming town of Grožnjan before continuing the tour with a visit to your last Istrian wine cellar experience at a renowned winery. Return to Rovinj in the early evening hours and enjoy the tour’s last night in Istria.

DISTANCE COVERED: -km140 km/3 hrs -nm cca. 2hrsOVERNIGHT: RovinjMEALS: BL

DAY 5  Rovinj – Zadar / Plitvice Lakes

Good morning! It is time to head towards Croatia’s coastal region of Dalmatia. We suggest going across the famous National Park of Plitvice Lakes, a unique natural phenomenon consisting of 16 lakes, specific both for its geomorphological composition and a large number of endemic species. It would really be a pity to miss this gem.

During the 2-hour ride from Plitvice Lakes to Zadar you will see first-hand just how diverse Croatian geography is. Upon arrival to Zadar and hotel check-in, a dinner with wine tasting is scheduled at 6:30 p.m. in a truly magical venue where you will have the opportunity to enjoy new flavours and soak up the sunset. Afterwards, we recommend taking a stroll through the historic centre of Zadar to round off the day.

DISTANCE COVERED: -km400 km/6 hrs -nm cca. 2-4 hrsOVERNIGHT: ZadarMEALS: BD

DAY 6  Zadar – Split / Vineyards, wineries & National Park Krka

Today, your wine adventure is about to have a special twist, allowing you to experience a true off-the-beaten-path adventure. You shall meet one of the toughest winemakers in Croatia whose small community cooperative produces both indigenous and foreign varietals. Tour the vast estate and savour the flavours of 4 wines and 2 olive oils accompanied by famous local cheese and prosciutto from the island of Pag, a true Croatian delicacy.

Your winery tour continues in a small village near the Krka National Park, where you will savour a 6-course meal inspired by tradition and perfectly paired with wines. After the visit, we recommend exploring the National Park and the nearby town of Šibenik before heading towards the city of Split. An exclusive option for this evening is to stay for the evening and have an exclusive private dinner with winemaker in his wine cellar.

DISTANCE COVERED:-km210 km/4 hrs -nm cca. 2 hrsOVERNIGHT: SplitMEALS: BL

DAY 7  Split / Kaštela – Trogir wine subregion

Upon arrival to Kaštel Sućurac, a picturesque 15th century village near Split, you will meet your guide and visit an experienced winemaker who is most renowned for his recently rewarded Plavac Mali – Selection.

The tour continues in Kaštel Štafilić, where you will be warmly welcomed by another winemaker who has had the courage to restore his ancestral vineyards, growing Babica, Plavac Mali and Crljenak Kaštelanski, which he shall proudly present to us along with snacks prepared especially for this occasion by his wife. After the wine tasting we will visit the historic Vitturi Castle and enjoy a brief lecture on wine heritage of the area.
In your free time, we recommend visiting the nearby town of Trogir, another UNESCO-protected site and an architectural marvel.

DISTANCE COVERED: -km56 km/2 hrs -nm cca. 1hrOVERNIGHT: SplitMEALS: BL

DAY 8  Split -Hvar / An Island hop

Today you will embark on a ferry ride from Split to Stari Grad – an ancient town on the northern side of the island of Hvar. Your first winery visit of the day will be a bit different, as we will take you to the first and thus far the only konoba (an old cellar) in Croatia which has been granted the status of a ‘Protected cultural heritage’.

Saying goodbye to our host you shall continue to another winery in Jelsa for a private VIP-tasting of 8 wines paired with local snacks over the course of 2 hours. For the rest of your time on Hvar, we recommend a visit to the town of Hvar, a glitzy bay town offering countless treasures. In the afternoon hours, ferry departs back to Split.

DISTANCE COVERED: -km20 km/30 min26 nm/4 hrs cca. 1hrOVERNIGHT: SplitMEALS: B

DAY 9  Split – Pelješac peninsula / Island, mainland and peninsula road trip

This day will be the most intense day of your tour, as you will cross more than 200 km and use 3 different ferries in a single day. First on the schedule is the island of Brač, where you will visit a local boutique winery and savour a 7-course slow food tasting paired with wines.
Trip continues with the ferry to Makarska for a visit to the second winery of the day, producing recognizable top-quality wines from autochthonous varieties: Trnak, Crljenak and Rukatac (Malvasia Lunga). A 30-minute drive will take you to the last ferry of the day for Pelješac peninsula, our most noted wine region. Check-in to your hotel and enjoy the rest of the evening free.

DISTANCE COVERED: -km120km/2,30 hrs19 nm/ 3 hrs -hrsOVERNIGHT: PelješacMEALS: BL

DAY 10  Pelješac peninsula / Pelješac wine region

Saving the best for last, Pelješac wine region will certainly not disappoint you with its famous wines. The first wine tasting of the day is scheduled after breakfast, where you shall taste wines from the best positioned vineyards of Dingač and Postup.

After the tour of the estate and tasting, return to the village of Potomje to have lunch at one of the best agritourism estates in the country. Literally everything you taste there is home grown, from their wines, to 3 different types of cheese, 4 types of milk, various vegetables and bread.

Your last winery visit of the day will be hosted by a somewhat awkward winemaker who generally doesn`t do wine tastings, as he believes that the tastings depend on the mood of the winemaker and his wines. On his estate you shall be welcomed by the winemaker himself, who will take you to his cellar and let you have a sip from his barrels.

DISTANCE COVERED: -km60 km/2 hrs -nm cca.2 hrsOVERNIGHT: PelješacMEALS: BL

DAY 11  Dubrovnik / Departure day

Your last day on our coastline has arrived. After breakfast and before your airport transfer, you can enjoy some free time. We hope that this trip, the Croatian people, and all the taste sensations you have experienced will stay in your minds and hearts for a long, long time. After all, that is the higher purpose of such a unique and personal tour. Bon voyage!

DISTANCE COVERED: -km25 km/40 min -nm cca. – hrsOVERNIGHT: –MEALS: B

Testimonials

Ventula put together a great tour for us. The destinations were a good mix of what inland Croatia and Slovenia have to offer, the recommended restaurants were great, and the personal guides made the trip a total pleasure. We felt we had a fantastic scenic and cultural experience. I would...

Karen W., USA