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Balkan Holiday from Zagreb

This Balkan trip gives you a perfect chance to enjoy the diversity and richness this part of the world on the south side of the Alps has to offer.
Starting point
Zagreb
Finish point
Dubrovnik
Duration
9 nights/10 days
Inquiry
Visit the capitals - Zagreb and Ljubljana 
See the remarkable Alps and Postojna Cave in Slovenia
Travel down the Mediterranean coast of the Adriatic all the way to Montenegro
Make your way into Bosnia to really feel the diversity of the Balkans
Ljubljana Castle over the city
Ljubljana Castle over the city
Postojna cave inside
Postojna Cave
Ljubljana Castle over the city
Postojna cave inside

Itinerary

Day What we will do
DAY 1 Zagreb
DAY 2 Ljubljana
DAY 3 Bled - Bohinj
DAY 4 Postojna Cave - Opatija
DAY 5 Plitvice National Park - Zadar
DAY 6 Šibenik - Trogir - Split
DAY 7 Split
DAY 8 Mostar
DAY 9 Ston - Dubrovnik
DAY 10 Dubrovnik
Day 1 - Capital of Croatia

Croatia’s flourishing modern yet traditional capital Zagreb is drenched in culture. Fantastic sightseeing options will keep you very busy on your first day. There will be plenty of strolling down picturesque streets and stopping by the Neo-Gothic Cathedral, St. Mark’s Church, and more. The city might be buzzing with excitement, but Zagreb’s Old Town center is just small enough to wander around carefree. It is the Balkans, after all, so a relaxed pace is obligatory.

Accomodations

Overnight stay in Zagreb

Included

Bled Castle entrance fee
Pletna boat ride to Bled island
Vintgar Gorge
Vogel mountain cable car ride

Highlights

Zagreb old town
Zagreb cathedral

Day 2 - Capital of Slovenia

From one cute capital to another, day two is reserved for Ljubljana. Slovenia’s charming Old Town always strikes a very special chord with its visitors. Lovely architecture, a proud medieval castle on a hill, and the winding Ljubljanica River with its vibrant café scene promise a wonderful guided tour. Ljubljana is much smaller than Zagreb, but there’s a fantastic list of things to see and do.

Accomodations

Overnight stay in Ljubljana

Included

Postojna Cave entrance fee

Highlights

Istrian Peninsula
Opatija resort

Ljubljana by night
Ljubljana by night
Ljubljana by night
Day 3 - The Alps

On the third day, we leave the urban hype behind and head for the pristine Alpine countryside. Lake Bled, with its iconic church island and ancient castle atop a giant cliff, is our morning destination. The afternoon is spent walking through a mystical gorge and visiting another glacial lake called Bohinj where the idyllic surroundings are simply breathtaking. And when the mountain backdrops aren’t enough, we finish the day with a cable car ride to the top of one – Mt. Vogel, to gaze across this picture-perfect landscape.

Accomodations

Overnight stay in Ljubljana

Included

Plitvice National Park entrance fee

Highlights

Plitvice Lakes National Park and UNESCO World Heritage Site
Great Waterfall
Flora and fauna of Plitvice Lakes
Zadar and UNESCO world heritage site

Lake Bled castle
Lake Bled castle
Panoramic view on Bohinj lake
Panoramic view of Bohinj lake
Lake Bled castle
Panoramic view of Bohinj lake
Day 4 - Slovenian Karst & Opatija

One cannot visit Slovenia without descending into the spellbinding depths of Postojna Cave. It’s the oldest show cave, home to incredible underground formations and the indigenous ‘human fish’. Just down the road from this subterranean gem is Predjama Castle, the biggest and most fascinating cave castle in the world. To get our first taste of the sea, we travel from the Slovenian Karst to the Istrian Riviera and the gorgeous seaside resort of Opatija.

*Optional add on – 3 days of Istria (Poreč, Rovinj, Motovun, Grožnjan, Pula, Opatija):

You can spend an extra 3 days traveling down the Istrian Peninsula where the coastal towns are exceptionally beautiful, the climate is more than pleasant and the cultural ingredients of the place are super interesting and diverse.

Accomodations

Overnight stay in Opatija

Included

Koski Mehmed-Pasha Mosque entrance fee

Highlights

Šibenik and UNESCO World Heritage Site
Trogir and UNESCO World Heritage Site

Predjama Castle
Predjama Castle
Predjama Castle
Day 5 - Plitvice UNESCO National Park

Another day, another mesmerizing destination. Day five brings some more natural splendor to our tour. We’re visiting Plitvice National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site and Croatia’s first national park. Its limestone formations, waterfalls, and 16 terraced lakes will take your breath away as you walk down the park’s interlinked walkways and hiking trails. In the evening, it’s onward to the Dalmatian coastal town of Zadar, a historic port and lively Old Town.

Optional add-on – 1 day of Kornati Islands:

The Kornati Islands are an archipelago off the Dalmatian coast, near the city of Zadar. The islands are a national park, the natural beauty of which is beyond comparison. A day trip to the Kornati is certainly an add-on option worth exploring.

Accomodations

Overnight stay in Zadar

Included

Ston walls entrance fee
Dubrovnik walls entrance fee

Highlights

Split and UNESCO World Heritage Site
Roman heritage of Split
Dalmatian coast with islands

Day 6 - Towns of Šibenik & Trogir

Our next destination is Šibenik. Sightseeing around this Dalmatian jewel includes the 15th-century Cathedral of St. James, the 14th-century Prince’s Palace, and the white stone St. Michael’s Fortress with views of Šibenik Bay and the neighboring islands.

Not far off is Trogir, an authentic medieval town connected to the mainland and an adjacent island by bridges. Trogir comes in a mixture of Renaissance, Baroque and Romanesque architecture and a soulful atmosphere. The busy day draws to a close with a drive to the sunny port city of Split.

Accomodations

Overnight stay in Split

Highlights

Mostar old town and UNESCO World Heritage Site
Turkish heritage of Bosnia
Mostar bridge

Day 7 - Split and surroundings

The seventh day is spent according to your wishes. You can investigate Split’s gorgeous old center, hop on a boat tour of the beautiful nearby islands of Hvar and Vis, or stroll around the Roman ruins of Solin, the capital of the Roman province of Dalmatia. Whatever you opt for, know that a splendid time is guaranteed.

Accomodations

Overnight stay in Split

Highlights

Town of Ston
Ston Walls
Dubrovnik old town
Dubrovnik Walls

Split marina
Split marina
Split waterfront
Split waterfront
Split marina
Split waterfront
Day 8 - Bosnia and Herzegovina

On the eighth day, another country enters our itinerary. It’s off to Mostar, the famous heritage site of southern Bosnia and Herzegovina. Mostar is known worldwide for its iconic Old Bridge over the Neretva River. It’s a reconstructed medieval arched bridge that connects the two sides of the city and boasts incredible cultural significance. Mostar’s amazing Turkish heritage also includes the Koski Mehmed-Pasha Mosque and stunning views from its minaret. The day is spent exploring the narrow streets and markets whilst enjoying the sights, smells, and sounds of a place lost in time.

Optional add-on – 2 days of Sarajevo, the capital of Bosnia:

Bosnia’s capital Sarajevo is truly a city worth visiting. It’s steeped in history and a hub of cultural symbiosis. A two-day addition to your holiday will take you to see all the highlights Sarajevo has to offer and feel the rhythm of this classic Balkan beauty.

Accomodations

Overnight stay in Mostar

Day 9 - Walled-off towns of Ston and Dubrovnik

The first fantastic destination on day nine is Ston, an antique walled settlement, which used to be an important political, cultural and ecclesiastical center through the centuries.  The second is Dubrovnik, one of Europe’s most acclaimed and best-preserved ports.

Dubrovnik’s iconic Old Town is encircled by a massive stone wall from the 16th century. You can walk the entire length of the wall and witness this time-capsule of town from above. Dubrovnik’s architecture spans through centuries: the baroque St. Blaise Church, the Renaissance Sponza Palace, and the Gothic Rector’s Palace.

Accomodations

Overnight stay in Dubrovnik

Day 10 - Dubrovnik and departure

The final (official) day of our Balkan Holiday is spent in Dubrovnik. There are plenty of awesome things to see and do in and around the Old Town that will certainly capture your imagination and leave a lasting impression.

Optional add-on – 1 day to the Bay of Kotor in Montenegro:

Not that far from Dubrovnik is the small state of Montenegro. An optional extension of your Balkan experience is a visit to Kotor, a charming medieval old town with a rich and ancient history and breathtakingly stunning surrounding landscape.

Extra days

Not enough? Why not spend a few more days here! Extend your holidays with a pre- or post-holiday extension. Accommodation, sightseeing, and activities can be arranged. Add as many extra days to your holiday as you wish.

Want to make some changes?

Tailor made holidays - let us know what works for you and we will make it happen.
Customize your holiday

Included in price

English-speaking guide*
Comfortable transportation*
9 nights 3* accommodation with breakfast
All entrance fees as in the itinerary
* not included on self guided tours

Our expedition around the Balkan region begins in Zagreb. After getting to know Croatia’s wonderful capital, our next destinations are just over the border in striking Slovenia. From Ljubljana, the greenest of capitals, to world-famous Lake Bled and the magical Julian Alps, down to the captivating Postojna Cave and Predjama Castle. Such a colorful introduction to Slovenia’s unique historical and geographical multiplicity.

Then it’s back to Croatia as we venture into the Istrian Riviera before venturing further to the natural miracle of Plitvice National Park, a forest reserve with captivating lakes and waterfalls, and Zadar, a beautiful coastal town in Dalmatia. We continue down the sunlit coastline to Šibenik and the ancient town of Trogir, before arriving in Croatia’s second-largest city of Split. The latter is a superb stepping stone to some of Dalmatia’s most attractive islands, Hvar and Vis, as well as the Roman ruins of Solin.

The third country on our tour is Bosnia & Herzegovina. We’ll be visiting Mostar, the country’s acclaimed cultural heritage site and the meeting point of cultures. We round up our amazing journey by heading back over the border to do some sightseeing in the ancient relic of Ston and the unbelievably gorgeous walled town of Dubrovnik, a sensational Adriatic port of immense historical importance.

And just in case the carefully assembled list of unforgettable destinations isn’t enough, we have also added a few extra options for you to extend your holidays with. The Istrian Peninsula, Bosnia’s capital Sarajevo, the Kornati Islands and Montenegro’s Kotor – each is a very promising add-on adventure for some more Balkan soulfulness.

If a longer adventure is more to your liking, visit The Balkan Tours for some more comprehensive experiences. For a more detailed description of what to expect on this Balkan road trip, please check out the itinerary.

Map

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Things to know

The included pickup in the price published on our website is in Zagreb and drop-off at the end of the holiday is in Dubrovnik. For any changes, please notify us upon booking. The included transfers are all the transfers between places and/or activities specified in the itinerary.

On your holidays you will have an experienced tour leader/tour guide, who will look after you for the entire duration of the tour. At some locations, city tours are conducted by professional local guides. All of our guides will make sure that you will receive expert guiding combined with great fun and memorable experiences.

Both our back office team and our guides know where to go. We can give you recommendations or even pre-book some places for you. You can be adventurous and find places on your own. Either way, let us know if you would like any sort of help.

It really depends on the level of your restriction. Vegetarian options are fairly easy to find in Slovenia and Croatia, but vegan dishes, on the other hand, are extremely hard to come by in rural areas and in smaller towns. Please note, that the places where we stop off for lunch are often traditional and may have difficulties accommodating you outside of their standard menu. We suggest you keep this in mind.

It is important to dress for the season. Slovenia has all 4 seasons, so please check the weather forecast before the holiday regarding temperatures and rainfall. When you are close to the Alps, you can see all 4 seasons change in the same day, so your best bet is to always bring an extra layer and rain gear. Croatia gets very hot, especially during the summer, so we advise you to do as locals do and bring your swimsuits to cool off in the balmy Adriatic. Visiting religious buildings, such as churches and mosques, you will need modest clothing that covers your knees and shoulders.

If you want to, sure! We are well aware that some people love to stay in groups while others prefer some more alone time on their trip. We wanted to give you the opportunity to do things your way. It is your holiday, after all! As long as you respect the group timings and locations designated by your guide, please feel free to customize your itinerary and create your own adventure!

We want to give you the opportunity to really see the best of the Balkans, so for those of you prepared to spend a longer holiday in our region, we offer the option to extend your holiday for a few days in some areas. We believe that these places should not be missed if you have a few extra days you can spare.

Ivana
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Join a group:
From: 2340€/person
14.5.2022 - 23.5.2022
11.6.2022 - 20.6.2022
16.7.2022 - 25.7.2022
27.8.2022 - 5.9.2022
Private guided:
From: 3640€/person
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Self-guided

For travellers that want flexibility and independence. We organize the holidays of your choice, but the adventure of getting around is all yours. You will get a fly & drive itinerary with activities, accommodations and travelling tips with full support of our team for any emergencies or concerns.

Small group

For solo travellers or travellers who wish to meet other like-minded souls, don’t want to stress about trip planning and would maybe like to enjoy some time on their own as well. You will be travelling with our tour leader in a small group of maximum 8 people in a comfortable van with accommodation, entrance fees and a detailed plan of activities arranged. For guaranteed tour departures we have a minimum of 4 people.

Private guided

For travellers who want a holiday based on their preferences and needs. You don’t need to worry over itinerary planning or your next move, and at the same time you can enjoy the holidays at your own pace and take as much time on your own whenever needed. We take care of the entire organization and provide you with a professional guide, accommodation, transportation and plan of activities.

Exceeding Your Expectations

Our professional team of locals with vast experience in tourism has cherry-picked the best things to do in Slovenia for all sorts of travellers.

Expert Local Guides

Our professional guides know the best places, are great to be around, and will go that extra mile for you.

100% Made in Slovenia

We are based in Slovenia and all of our holidays are of our own design, making the prices and experiences better for you.

Trusted by Many

We are a fully bonded and insured travel company, keeping your money safe and with thousands of satisfied customers in the past, we still put you first.

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