DubrovnikIsland

Croatia: Islands & Mountains

from $1,479.00

Walk idyllic coastal and mountain paths in Croatia

  • Reviews 8 Reviews
    5/5
  • Vacation Style Holiday Type
    Guided
  • Activity Level Moderate
    5/8
  • Group Size Small Group
    4 - 16
All about the Croatia: Islands & Mountains.

Enjoy the very best of Croatia; the coast and islands, the beautiful towns, near-perfect national parks and spectacular mountains. Starting in the fascinating UNESCO city of Dubrovnik, we begin our journey along the coast where the crystal clear sea forms the backdrop for many of our early walks, followed by the peaceful sound of waterfalls as we head into the national parks of Paklenica and Krka. Here we have a chance to visit Skradinski buk waterfalls and enjoy walks through spectacular gorges, forests and mountain scenery.

The tour package inclusions and exclusions at a glance
What is included in this tour?Items that are included in the cost of tour price.

* All breakfasts
* 7 nights in 2 and 3-star hotels
* All transport and listed activities. Luggage transported by private vehicle.
* Tour leader throughout, group normally 4 to 16 plus leader.
* Airport transfers (at designated times)

What is not included in this tour?
  • Flights
  • Single Accommodation (available on request, inquire for supplement)

Highlights

  • Walk idyllic coastal and mountain routes
  • Discover the beautiful UNESCO town of Dubrovnik
  • Experience the wilderness of Krka and Paklenica National Parks
  1. Day 1 Start Dubrovnik

    The tour starts in the fascinating old city of Dubrovnik. Situated right on the Adriatic Sea, the fine religious buildings surrounded by heavily fortified walls and the jumble of red-tiled roofs make this a truly enchanting place. In the evening we will take a walk around the city and go out for a group meal where we will have a briefing about the tour.

  2. Day 2 Walk from Gornji Obod to Strazisce Peak; transfer to Dubrovnik, explore the old town

    After breakfast we take a short transfer (about 25 minutes) to the village of Gornji Obod. From here we follow a path that zig-zags its way up to the village of Velji Do. After a break, the walk continues up to Strazisce Peak, and at the top we are rewarded with spectacular views back over Dubrovnik and can see the commemorative cross in memory of the US aircraft which crashed delivering aid in 1996. We return to Velji Do and then transfer back to Dubrovnik where we have the afternoon to enjoy the city. The shelling of Dubrovnik by Serb troops in 1991 and 1992 outraged the world. Fortunately over the last 10 years great care has been taken to re-build the damaged parts of Dubrovnik and the city has now returned to its former glory. The cobblestoned streets of the old town, or Stari Grad, features fountains, churches, palaces and museums – all built from the same light coloured stone. There are no motor vehicles in the city but at night the streets come alive as locals and visitors take an early evening stroll along the Stradun – this is the main street and is covered in smooth shiny marble.

  3. Day 3 Transfer up the coast to the Biokovo Massif; walk above the town of Makarska; transfer to Bol on the Island of Brac

    After breakfast, we will transfer by bus to Tucepi. This transfer takes about 3.5 hours including a coffee break en route. Once in Tucepi we begin our walk to Makarska, through the Biokovo mountains. The Biokovo massif rises up steeply above the Makarska Riviera in three spectacular shelves, providing hiking at all levels and fabulous views. Our destination of Makarska is a small but lively town, tastefully restored in stone after a devastating earthquake in 1962. It has a fantastic 2km stretch of beach, so if we have a bit of time we can take a refreshing dip before we head for the island of Brac. We will catch the ferry from Makarska and transfer to Bol, by far the biggest draw on the island of Brac.

  4. Day 4 Climb Vidova Gora for views over Bol and Zlatni Rat, the Golden Beach; afternoon to relax on the beach

    We start today with a 20 minute transfer to the small village of Gazul, and from here we begin our walk to the peak of Vidova Gora (780m). The first part of our walk will take us through woodland for around 1.5hrs as we gradually ascend 230m to the summit of the highest point on Brac Island. The views from the top of Vidova Gora are spectacular as we can see all the way to the island of Hvar in the distance and the famous 500m long spit of Zlatni Rat jutting out to sea in the foreground – this view is one that features on many postcards in Croatia so make sure to bring your camera! From here, our walk is downhill for around 2hrs towards the town of Bol. In the afternoon you can make the most of the glorious beach of Zlatni Rat. It is south facing, so ideal for an afternoon of rest and relaxation.

  5. Day 5 Catch the ferry to Split and enjoy a couple of hours exploring the old town before transferring to Krka N.P.; visit the Skradinski buk waterfalls.

    We begin with a morning ferry transfer to Split, Croatia’s second biggest city. The old centre is compact and easily explored on foot, with the main draw is Diocletian’s Roman Palace. The town as a whole is a lively and friendly place with a bustling café culture, so it is simply a nice place to stop, have a coffee and soak up the atmosphere. We then have a transfer (approx. 84km) by bus to Krka National Park. Here we begin our walk to the Skradinski Buk waterfalls, made up of a series of waterfalls dropping down in 17 dramatic steps. The area is accessed by wooden walkways and forest paths. The area is also fantastic for wildlife – it is now an important wildlife sanctuary with several species endemic to the region or now extinct elsewhere in Europe. The walk will take around 2.5 hours and is all on easy paths. In the late afternoon, we transfer to Starigrad Paklenica.

  6. Day 6 Velika Paklenica N.P. gorge walk via the Mirila Graves and Ramici Village

    Today we have a walking tour of the National Park Paklenica. Paklenica is home to the two impressive canyons of Velika and Mala Paklenica, vertically cut into the mountain where climbers from all across Europe come to test their skills and conquer these vertical assents. In a relatively small area of the national park, there are several unusual karst forms and caves, and the area is extremely rich in flora and fauna. Our 7.5 hour walk starts with a short jeep ride up to Veliko Rujno (850m), and from here we climb 300m for fantastic views over the park. Our walk is then mostly downhill as we have 1150m of descent through the quietest areas of the park, passing the unusual Mirila graves, the village of Ramici and finishing in the main canyon itself. In the afternoon we return to Starigrad Paklenica.

  7. Day 7 Another day in Paklenica N.P.; walk to a meadow beneath Bojin Kuk peak before returning to Starigrad Paklenica in the afternoon

    Today we have another opportunity to explore the wonderful wilderness of National Park Paklenica. We walk to the saddle of ’Pod Jaginim Kukom’ which has a great view up to Bojin Kuk. The Bojinac group is made up of a vast area of limestone, with the karst scenery forming towers of rock, furrowed limestone cliffs, caves and soft green meadows creating a contrast against the severe rock. It is an area of outstanding natural beauty and a walkers paradise. We walk for about 5-6 hours, returning to Starigrad Paklenica in the afternoon in time for a swim and relaxation before leaving Croatia tomorrow.

  8. Day 8 The tour Ends at Zadar Airport.

    Transfer to Zadar airport where the tour ends.

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Where you stay

Hotels

7 nights hotels. Hotels are simple but comfortable with en suite facilities. In recent years Croatia has regained its place as a popular tourist destination with visitor levels nearly as high as before the Balkan conflict. Unfortunately, a large number of hotels were damaged beyond repair either directly or indirectly during those years and demand now heavily outstrips supply. As a result hotel prices are high and Croatia is not the cheap destination some might expect. Hotels tend to be more workmanlike than luxurious with communist era style architecture and facilities.

In Dubrovnik, we usually stay at Hotel Komodor ANNEX, situated in Lapad bay. It is close to restaurants and bars and the bus stop for the Old Town is just in front of the hotel. A pebble beach is nearby for anyone wanting a refreshing dip in the Adriatic Sea or you can enjoy the hotels’ outdoor pool. The hotel was newly refurbished in winter 2018.

In the small town of Bol we stay at the family run hotel Vila Daniela. It is a 10 minute stroll to the famous beach, Golden Horn. Katarina is one of the friendliest receptionists, she is always making sure our guests don’t lack anything. Her father has a lovely traditional restaurant that you can visit and it will be a dinner to remember. Traditional dishes made from local produce and vegetables grown in their only garden will possibly be the cuisine highlight of the trip.

Hotel Vicko in Starigrad Paklenica is only 50 meters away from a public beach, the sea awaits us, we can have a swim after walking through beautiful Paklenica NP. Hotel Vicko  also has a really good restaurant serving local dishes. This hotel truly understands the meaning of a hiker tourist, they will never complain about muddy shoes or a wet overcoat, and will help you dry out. Their breakfast is amazing with various choice and their food in their restaurant is made from secret family recipes spiced with local medical herbs from the great mountain of Velebit.

Eating and Drinking

All breakfasts are included.

For breakfast you can expect a large continental buffet with meats and cheeses, bread, jams and pastries as well as tea and coffee.

Croatian cuisine is a mixture of fine seafood, grilled meat, pizza, pasta and salads, with influences from Central Europe, Italy and the Balkans. Some specialties that we highly recommend include squid ink risotto and Octopus salad!

This tour is graded Activity Level 3 (Moderate)

The majority of the walking routes are on clearly defined paths. The paths can get steeper in places and some sections can be rocky. No specific technical experience is required but we recommend that you are comfortable walking in hilly and mountainous areas. Anyone with a reasonable level of fitness should be comfortable with the daily distances and height gained.

Overall Rating
5/5
Reviewed On 26/07/2019
5/5

Absolutely amazing.....

  • What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I have done group tours before and this was my first with Exodus, and honestly was the best tour group I could have asked for. Everyone clicked and we all got along and enjoyed our hikes and chats along the way. Needless to say the Dalmatian Coast did not disappoint. I enjoyed our hikes, the picnics, the breakfasts together, the beautiful sea. The van rides were very comfortable too.
  • What did you think of your group leader?

    The tour guide Ivan, was simply the best. He paid attention to each and everyone of us and listened to what we had to say. He sang and chatted with us along the trails, on the bus and the meals. He took care of specific needs and requests as well. It will be tough for future guides to get a better rating.
  • Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Yes, do this trip!!!!
  • Is there anything else you would like to add?

    I hope that the other Exodus trips are equally good.

Reviewed On 26/07/2019
5/5

Croatia: Islands and Mountains

  • What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The orchids that bloomed in dark pine forest- birds nest orchid and sword leaved white helleborine; and pyramidal orchid and bee orchid that grew on open limestone pasture.
  • What did you think of your group leader?

    Very warm and professional.
  • Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Be prepared for hot walking. When you are away from shady woodland it can be exposed take water and sunscreen and a hat.
  • Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Slightly disappointed to have to provide our own picnic. In previous trips the leader usually shops and the picnic is shared out and carried by the party members. Not here.

Reviewed On 26/07/2019
5/5

Croatia holiday

  • What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    The walls of Dubrovnik and the limestone canyon in Velika Paklenica national park
  • What did you think of your group leader?

    Very good, friendly and considerate. He coped well with two weak members of the group and found them alternative walks when we did the hardest routes.
  • Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    Bring walking poles as one or two walks in the National Park were very rough and steep. These were goat tracks not wide paths.
  • Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Trip notes need to be more specific as to the difficulty of the terrain. A few more hours needed in both Split and Dubrovnik. Zadar worth a visit.

Reviewed On 26/07/2019
5/5

Amazing 7-Day Tour of Croatia

  • What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    It was standing at the summit on each of our hiking days in Croatia’s mountains and marveling at the beauty of this country. I loved the people, the scenery and the adventure.
  • What did you think of your group leader?

    Our guide was Mario, a native who taught us so much about his country, the war and the Croats. He was high energy and great fun. I would definitely do a tour with Mario again.
  • Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    October is a great time to do this tour. Our temperatures averaged mid 70s which made it very comfortable to hike. Do not book this trip during August. Our guide Mario said his group had a difficult time hiking during the heat wave this summer.
  • Is there anything else you would like to add?

    This is my third tour with Exodus in the past year. I love the small group size, the avid hikers and the unusual places we see.

Reviewed On 26/07/2019
4/5

Mountain walking in a beautiful country

  • What was the most inspirational moment of your trip?

    I loved the sunset at Dubrovnik old town, plus the views from the summits we visited were absolutely stunning (my favourite was probably from Vidova Gora on Brac island).
  • What did you think of your group leader?

    Zeljko, our guide, was fantastic. He couldn't have been any better. He was extremely knowledgeable and was able to answer everybody's questions. He loved his country and wanted to share his knowledge with us whenever he got the opportunity. We got a real insight into the complicated history of the country and into the way people live. We were caught out by an unexpected storm while up on a mountain walk one day. The Bora winds were far stronger than forecast and we had to get off the mountain as it was dangerous. Zeljko was calm and professional, got everyone to safety and managed to organise alternative transport for us all to get us to our destination on the island of Brac. He also made sure that everyone got to where they needed to be at the end of the week (as not everyone was travelling home on the group flight).
  • Do you have any advice for potential travellers?

    If you want to swim, the sea around Dubrovnik was lovely and warm but at Starigrad Paklenica it was chilly (to say the least)! This could just be because of the weather but it's possibly more protected around Dubrovnik. Also the opportunity to swim around the Skradinski Buk waterfalls was not quite what I had imagined. It's fairly touristy and the area for swimming is quite restricted. Also, if you want to wander around the waterfalls on the wooden walkways you won't have time to swim as well. Many of the mountain paths are rocky and loose. If you are used to mountain walking you won't have a problem but some people in the group found this more difficult. We went at the end of September and it was chillier than expected on some days (but very hot on others). As well as light hiking gear, make sure you take a waterproof jacket AND trousers, take some long trousers - not just shorts, and possibly even a pair of light gloves and a hat.
  • Is there anything else you would like to add?

    Croatia is a beautiful country. This trip gave me a really good overview and insight into the Dalmatian coastal region (as well as some very enjoyable walking). I definitely want to go back!

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