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For sun and sea, with a side of culture, spend a week island-hopping along Croatia's Dalmatian Coast. Contrast ancient history found in terracota-roofed cities with rural island life, visiting a local farm to taste some fresh produce. Above all, don't miss daily opportunities to swim, katak or snorkel in crystal-clear waters.
Explore Tour Leader
3 nights comfortable hotel
4 nights premium hotel
Trip maximum 16 Explore Average 11
Itineraries on some departure dates may differ, please select the itinerary that you wish to explore.
Arrive in Split. Our hotel is about 35 minutes drive from the airport.
For those arriving on time your Tour Leader plans to meet you in the hotel reception at 6pm for the welcome meeting. Following the welcome meeting, there is an opportunity to go out for dinner and sample traditional Croatian cuisine and go for a walk in the old town of Split, a UNESCO heritage site, with enchanting history and incredible atmosphere.
If you arrive early, Split has plenty of things to do, especially the historic sites within the Palace of Diocletian. Built to honour the Roman Emperor Diocletian, this huge residence makes up around half of the old city and is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is widely regarded as the world's most complete and well-preserved Roman Palace. The city is also full of culture and has a host of excellent museums. The city is also full of culture and has a host of excellent museums.
If you would like to receive a complimentary airport transfer today, you'll need to arrive into Split Airport (SPU). Should you miss the welcome meeting, your Tour Leader will inform you of any essential information as soon as you catch up.
Cornaro Hotel Split (or similar)
This morning, we make our way to the harbour and board the ferry to Brac. Renowned for its beautiful beaches and rich cultural heritage, Brac offers tranquillity and a more authentic Croatian island experience than its neighbour island, Hvar.
The journey takes us across the azure waters and panoramic views of the coastline, and we will reach the beautiful island of Brac in around one hour. Our premium hotel for the next two nights is located in Bol. Most known for its Zlatni Rat Beach, which is often rated as one of the most beautiful beaches in the world, Bol has a lot to offers to suit everyone. After a short orientation tour, the afternoon is left free for you to experience one of the many activities the island has to offer.
Enjoy the breathtaking Zlatni Rat Beach which is only a short walking distance from the hotel or relax by the pool.
You can also easily hire bikes from the hotel to cycle along the scenic coastal roads of Brac. Immerse yourself in the island's landscapes, discover hidden gems, and enjoy the freedom of exploring at your own pace.
Another option is to rent a kayak or a stand-up paddleboard to go and glide along the turquoise waters and marvel at the stunning coastline.
In the evening, Bol offers a wide variety of restaurants and bars to choose from. Most restaurants offer local and Mediterranean specialities, the most popular being 'lamb on a spit' and 'octopus under Peka.' If you like trying different food, you should definitely try 'Vitalac,' which is an authentic dish from the island.
Hotel Elaphusa (or similar)
This morning we drive up into Brac's rugged interior and to the village of Vidova Gora, the highest peak of all Croatian islands. The views from the top are absolutely stunning. To the northeast, the Croatia coastline is visible, on a clear day from Makarska to Split. Across the Adriatic Sea, you can see Hvar, Korcula, Lastovo, Vis and Solta. Looking down Vidova Gora mountain is the town of Bol and the iconic Zlatni Rat Beach.
Afterward, we take a short drive and hike to one of Croatia's best hidden gems, Blaca Hermitage, a secluded canyon where Glagolitic priests established a hermitage in the 16th century. The hike is about 30 minutes along a scenic trail leading to the monastery. The hike is not very difficult, but it requires some stamina and proper footwear. Once arrived, the monastery offers a glimpse into a different era when monks lived in harmony with nature. Explore the hermitage's architecture, historical artifacts, and learn about the hermits who once resided here.
After a delicious breakfast, we depart from Brac and hop on a scenic catamaran ride to Korcula, lying in the centre of the archipelago. Sit back, relax, and enjoy the mesmerizing views of the Adriatic Sea as we sail towards our next destination. Korcula is known for its interior of dense pine forests, which once supplied the Venetians with timber for their vast fleets. It's also known for its vineyards, producing some excellent white wines from their indigenous Grk variety of grape. Our base for the next two nights is in the palm-lined streets of Korcula Town, a medieval settlement that enjoys a low-key rustic charm.
After settling in at our hotel, we make our way to the Kocje Nature Reserve, a hidden gem known for its untouched forests, interesting rock formations dressed in moss and resident fairies (according to local legend). Led by a knowledgeable guide, we walk through the nature reserve observing strange rock formations and tall trees. The subdued daylight that permeates through the trees, will give you the feeling of being in the middle of a jungle. As we explore the trails, keep an eye out for native wildlife and unique plant species.
We, then head towards a family farm where traditional agricultural practices are upheld, making them the first ecological olive oil producers on the island. We meet the family and learn about their history and the different produce grown on the estate before indulging ourselves in a food tasting experience featuring a variety of locally sourced delicacies such as fresh harvested fruits, artisanal cheeses, homemade preserves, and other traditional delights that showcase the rich culinary heritage of Korcula.
We say goodbye to the family and journey back to the charming town of Korcula where we explore the medieval streets, see the historic sites, and soak up the vibrant atmosphere of this ancient, fortified town.
In the evening, you are free to explore a number of Korcula's renowned restaurants or taverns.
Marko Polo Hotel (or similar)
This morning we take a 40-minute catamaran out to the lush and beautiful Mljet Island. Awarded National Park status in 1962, the island is the greenest in Croatia and home to just one hotel. It's otherwise made up of verdant green forests, sheltered coves lapped by crystal-clear waters and white-sand beaches.
The Tour Leader will provide a short orientation walk to get your bearings and will run through your options for today, before leaving the rest of the day free to explore at our leisure. Basing ourselves in Pomena, there are a variety of ways to explore the island's lush interior either by foot or bicycle on well-signposted trails, or perhaps explore the coastline by kayak. There are plenty of beaches to choose to relax on, and a choice of restaurants serving up locally produced food and wine.
The catamaran this evening back to Korcula is due to depart at 17.20.
This morning, we start our journey in the comfort of a minibus, and a short ferry transfer to the Peljesac peninsula, enjoying the picturesque views of the Croatian countryside as we make our way towards Dubrovnik. Our first stop will take us to a charming winery, where we have the opportunity to indulge in a delightful wine tasting experience. Sample a selection of exquisite local wines, learn about the winemaking process, and savour the unique flavours that this region has to offer.
We continue our journey, making our way to the town of Ston. Known for its impressive defensive walls, which are the second longest in the world, Ston offers a fascinating glimpse into Croatia's rich history. Take a leisurely stroll through the town, admire the ancient architecture, and perhaps indulge in some local delicacies, such as the renowned Ston oysters or delicious seafood dishes.
After our visit to Ston, we travel to our final destination, the spectacular walled city, Dubrovnik. Like many Croatian cities, Dubrovnik has seen its share of conquerors and settlers, each adding their own contributions to the city we see today. Extensive renovations during the 1990's and into 2000's has meant that the city is excellently preserved, its old walls housing tiled roofs and white-washed buildings in all their splendour that give the illusion of stepping back in time.
Upon arrival in Dubrovnik, we settle into our premium accommodation where we have the evening at leisure. Our hotel is located in the sought after Lapad peninsula with its beautiful promenade by the sea lined with trees and where you can find plenty of local restaurants and bars. If you prefer to go and have dinner in the Old Town, you can easily reach it by bus or taxi.
Hotel Ariston (or similar)
In the morning, we take a short transfer to the Old Town for a walking tour led by a historian.
Starting from Pile Square on the eastern side of Dubrovnik, we snake our way through the maze of narrow streets and lively piazzas to take in the Sponza Palace, housing the city's archives, and the intricately carved baroque church of St Blaise. Continuing through the main thoroughfare of Stradun we walk down the Jesuit Staircase, perhaps better known as the 'Steps of the Great Sept of Bailor' used for the 'Walk of Shame' scene in Game of Thrones. Finally, we end at the magnificent Rector's Palace, another filming location but an incredible example of Gothic architecture in its own right.
The afternoon is left free to explore the city by yourself. There is so much to see and do in this charming city. Particular other highlights include the cable car to Mount Srd, a walk out in Konavle Valley or there are specialist tours based around Game of Thrones if that is of interest. If you want to walk along the Dubrovnik City Walls, we suggest you to buy a Dubrovnik Card which gives you access to many sights and public transport around Dubrovnik.
There are no activities planned today, so you are free to depart from Dubrovnik at any time. If your flight is departing later in the day, luggage storage facilities are available at our hotel. If you would like to receive a complimentary airport transfer today, you need to depart from Dubrovnik Airport (DBV) which is a 25 kilometre, 35 minute drive from Dubrovnik.
The Croatian Adriatic has a Mediterranean climate with mild winters and warm, dry, sunny summers. There is a chance of sporadic rain in spring and autumn, though generally it is in the form of short showers. Thunderstorms can occur in summer, generally helping to cool the air. Hvar Island gets the most sunshine in summer with 10-12 hours each day, followed by Split, Korcula Island and Dubrovnik with around 7-8 hours. Temperatures from May to October are generally in the low to mid 70's (in °F), but can reach into the 30's (in °C) in July and August. Trip itineraries with boat cruises can occasionally be disrupted due to bad weather.
2 Pin Round
Mljet Island - Cycle hire: €8 per hour / €25 for 3-6 hours / ebike an additional €25 p/p, Kayak hire (2 seater): €20 per hour / €50 for 3-6 hours
July and August are the hottest months and lightweight cotton clothing is best. During spring and autumn temperatures can be lower or drop during the evenings and there is also a stronger possibility of rain, although light rainwear may be needed at any time of year. Layered clothing and a warm fleece are recommended for cooler evenings along with a waterproof jacket.
Comfortable walking shoes plus sandals/flip flops for relaxing. You may find a pair of old shoes or sandals useful for swimming off rocks and stoney beaches.
One main piece of baggage and a daypack. Remember that you will have to carry your own luggage between our bus and your accommodation so don't overload yourself.
We advise taking a water bottle for our included walks and cycle rides as well as sun glasses, sunscreen and a sun hat. To cut down on your plastic consumption we would also recommend bringing a reusable drink straw, travel coffee cup and a shopping bag with you. In case of emergency, it is advisable to carry a first aid kit and a torch. You might find mosquito repellent handy and bring a swimming suit and towel for any of the water-based activities.
Out this tour, we selected a range of premium accommodation based on their location, amenities and standarts. In Split, you will be staying at Hotel Corner, a 4* property located near the centre of Split making it easy to explore this enchanting city on your first night. Please note that some departures will be at hotel Cora, altough a bit further away, the hotel is a brand new 4* property within 10 minutes drive of the Old Town. On Brac Island, we chose the Hotel Elaphusa located 50 metres from the sea and a short walk from the popular Zlatni Rat Beach and the centre of Bol. The hotel offers indoor and outdoor pools and a sunbathing area. It also includes a tepidarium with heated water, ceramic beds and a cocktail bar. The rooms are elegantly decorated and spacious with air conditioning and a bathroom with a bathtub and hairdryer. In Korcula, you will staying either at the Marko Polo Hotel, Liburna Hotel or Port 9 Hotel. All properties are 4* with swimming pools facing the sea and located in the Old Town of Korcula. The rooms are cosy and confortable with air conditionning. For the last two nights in Dubrovnik, you will be staying at the 5* Royal Ariston Hotel located on the Lapad Peninsula, a short taxi drive from the Old Town. The Hotel offers a private beach and a seaside swimming pool with panoramic views. It is located within the Royal Hotels & Resort offering ultimate privacy surrounded by pine trees with eight swimming pools, spa and three on site restaurants.
Can you drink the water?
It is generally possible to drink the local tap water, therefore to reduce the need for single-use plastic bottles we recommend you bring a refillable water bottle with you. Your leader will advise you on refill points each day.
We strongly recommend that you check your government's travel advisory for up-to-date information and advice about your destination: safety and security, entry requirements, health, local laws and customs. For UK citizens, check the latest Foreign, Commonwealth & Development Office advice.
Please refer to our COVID-19 entry requirements page for any country-specific conditions of entry. Whilst we strive to update this on a regular basis we recommend you also check the FCDO website for the latest advice on entry requirements in this fast-evolving situation. Information can change at any time.
Please note that some countries require proof of parental consent when travelling overseas with under 18s. Please check requirements with the relevant embassy or consular office well in advance of travel if this applies to your party.
Once your booking has been confirmed we guarantee the price will not increase, whatever the circumstances. However, please note that if you voluntarily make any changes to your booking including changing your trip or departure date, any additional costs or charges incurred will not be covered. Before booking please ensure you have read our important tour pricing information.Booking Conditions
Croatia: Visas are not required by UK, Australian, New Zealand, US or Canadian citizens. Other nationalities should consult their local embassy or consular office.
If you do require assistance in obtaining a visa then you may be able to apply through Explore's recommended visa service in the UK, Travcour. See www.travcour.com to download the relevant visa application for your trip, if applicable (UK citizens only), along with details of how to apply for your visa through Travcour. The Team at Travcour will be happy to answer specific questions relating to visa applications, please call them directly on 0208 5431846.
It is your responsibility to ensure that you are in possession of a full passport, with the correct validity for your chosen destination.
Before booking your Explore trip, please ensure that you read both our Essential Information and Booking Conditions.
Customers who have chosen to book on the ‘Land Only’ arrangements of our tour, please ensure that you have checked your tour specific ‘Joining Instructions’ prior to booking your own travel arrangements. Your joining instructions can be found below in the dates and prices information.
You may also be eligible for the Free Explore Transfer.
Customers booked on the ‘Land Only’ arrangements will receive a Free Transfer, provided you arrive and depart on the tour only itinerary start and end dates. The complimentary transfers will be arranged from the Explore designated airport or train station to your trips joining point, and then back from the ending point to the designated airport or train station. Generally the airport or station that Explore have selected will be the one that is closest to the town or city where the trip starts, or the one nearest to the joining point. It will be either an airport or train station but not both.
The exception to this rule is customers who are booked on a tour where the joining and ending point is at the designated airport or train station.
Free transfers are not available for Polar customers.
If you are not eligible for the Free Transfer then you will need to make your own way through to the joining and ending point. On a majority of our tours Explore will be able to provide a private transfer at an additional cost. Please ask for a quote at the time of booking.
For more information regarding the Explore Free Transfer click here
It is a condition of booking with Explore that you have adequate valid travel insurance. It is your responsibility to arrange appropriate travel insurance and ensure you have read and understood the full terms and conditions of your travel insurance policy to ensure that you are covered for all activities you intend to undertake whilst on the tour, including all optional activities. Your Insurance Policy must fully cover you for medical expenses and emergency repatriation to your home country. Please ensure your policy includes medical emergency helicopter evacuation in the event of illness or injury and covers the entire duration of your holiday. If you are trekking at altitude please ensure that there is no upper altitude limit which may limit or exclude cover for your trip. The cost of many of our Polar Voyages will exceed the capped amount covered by standard insurance premiums and you will be required to pay an additional premium to cover the full value of your trip. Please ensure that you are covered for the full amount of your holiday cost, as insufficient cover could invalidate a claim under the policy. Medical and repatriation insurance cover is not mandatory for UK residents who are travelling on trips within the United Kingdom.
Read more information about what travel insurance is required.
Explore offers a wide range of flexible flying options to make joining and leaving our trips easy. Read more about them here.
You are able to book this tour on a 'land only' basis or as a ‘flight inclusive’ package. Your flight inclusive package will be fully protected by the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) ATOL protection scheme.
We have a good selection of flights not only from London but from many regional airports around the UK allowing us to compare fares between scheduled carriers as well as low cost and charter airlines. Our dedicated flights team will match the best flight options to your arrival and departure airport.
On our website we display a UK flight inclusive package guide price which is generally based on a London departure. To avoid paying supplements or to secure your preferred flight option, we recommend booking as early as possible, especially for peak travel dates.
Although not mandatory, there a lot of activities on this trip are focussed around or in the water, so to get the most out of the trip, the abiliy to swim is strongly encouraged. If wishing to particpate in any of the water-based activities, the ability to swim is essential.
Nothing compulsory, but we recommend being up-to-date with your routine vaccination courses and boosters as recommended in the UK including protection against measles, mumps, rubella, tetanus, diphtheria, hepatitis A, typhoid and polio. Tick-borne encephalitis protection is recommended by some medical sources at certain times of the year. Ticks are most active between spring and late autumn. Please check the latest requirements with your travel clinic or doctor prior to departure. The above is not an exhaustive list. Further information regarding vaccinations and travel health advice can be found by following the NHS and NaTHNaC links at Explore Travel Health and from your local healthcare provider. Visa and vaccination requirements are subject to change and should be confirmed by you before travelling.