Croatia: Culinary Pearls of the Adriatic

Spring, Summer 2017 (8 days, 7 nights)

In Europe it is hard to find a country in which so much culinary diversity exists as in Croatia. The historical turbulence, geography, cultural diversity – as well as the changes between the city and the country – all contribute to Croatia’s culinary heritage.

Connoisseurs of other European cuisines will recognize the influence from of former rulers: from Vienna to Istanbul to Venice. As Brendan Newnam wrote for Saveur, “This part of Central Europe was passed back and forth between the Italians, Austro-Hungarians, and sometimes the Turks, for centuries.”

With 3,600 miles of coastline, Croatia is in many ways a dream destination, and it’s becoming increasingly popular.  Delicious seafood, charming hotels, stunning architecture, great nature, it’s friendly people and long history await you.

Our itinerary is centered on the Adriatic Coast of Dalmatia, rich in traditions and authentic charm.

*Please note that if booking independent travel as a self-drive, some culinary elements of the tour may change.

Delicious Highlights will include

  • Start your holiday on the hotel’s terrace with welcome drinks and predjela (appetizers)
  • Chef’s tour of Split’s open food market
  • Enjoy a traditional lunch at one of Split’s top bistros next to Diocletian’s Palace
  • Visit Bibic Winery for a tour, tasting and multi-course gourmet lunch
  • Experience wine tasting with food pairing made from fresh local produce an island vineyard
  • Visit one of Croatia’s first wine cooperatives and enjoy a wine tasting of award-winning wines and dinner outside on a hill overlooking the ocean
  • Enjoy an exclusive boat ride around the Bay of Ston with fresh oysters and wine, followed by lunch on a private island
  • Dine at an exclusive restaurant on one of the Elaphite islands while enjoying panoramas of the Adriatic
  • Have a picnic lunch with freshly-prepared bread – the Croatian way – under a bell

Sightseeing Highlights are:

  • A private walking tour of Split known as the “most beautiful city in the world” by its inhabitants
  • A visit to Diocletian’s Palace, a UNESCO World Heritage Site
  • Explore the beautiful scenery of Krka National Park and take a boat ride under the waterfalls of Skrandinski buk.
  • Day trip to the beautiful island of Brac
  • Explore Dubrovnik’s city walls and the Old Town (a UNESCO World Heritage Site) during a private walking tour
  • Take a cable car up Mount Srdj (450 m above sea level) and enjoy stunning views of the old city of Dubrovnik
  • Learn about silk production during a visit to an ancient silk workshop and then experience making silk yourself
  • Other visits to charming museums and churches

Included in your tour is:

  • Eight-day tour by luxury motor coach with an expert driver/guide
  • Breakfast daily
  • Five lunches and three dinners
  • Four nights at Hotel Park, Split
  • Three nights at Villa Dubrovnik, Dubrovnik
  • Sightseeing as indicated in the itinerary

Day 1: Split
Arrival in Split, a major Mediterranean port that is the heart of Dalmatia and Croatia’a second-largest city. You’ll be spending your first four nights in Marmont Hotel, located in Diocletian’s fourth-century palace. This evening you will meet your fellow travelers and enjoy a welcome drink and predjela (appetizers) on the hotel terrace.  Your Global Gourmands host will also go over the details of your the itinerary and the activities planned for the week.

Hotel Park, Split

Day 2: Split
Set out this morning for a private guided walking tour of Split’s city center. Discover this dynamic city with a perfect blend of historical and modern influences.  Next we will stop at the open food market where a chef will join us while he buys fresh ingredients for our lunch.  Continue to Diocletian’s Palace, a UNESCO World Heritage site and the heart of the city, built in the 4th century by Emperor Diocletian as a summer residence.  Afterwards, pause for lunch at the chef’s bistro within the palace walls.  Your afternoon and evening are at leisure to enjoy Split on your own.

Hotel Park, Split

Day 3:  Krka National Park & Skradin
A drive through the foothills of the Dinara Mountain will lead to the scenic Krka National Park.  We will board a public boat for a ride under the waterfalls of Skradinski and later stroll around the falls.  Before leaving, we’ll visit a folklore museum housed in an old mill that pays tribute to the history and traditions of rural life.   The scenic tour continues with a drive through the rolling hills leading to Bibic Winery (where Anthony Bourdain was spotted in 2015).  You will tour the vineyards and cellars before a six-course gourmet lunch with wine pairing.

Hotel Park, Split

Day 4: Excursion to island of Brac
Today we’ll leave Split for a tour to the island of Brac, a brief ferry ride away.  Known as the Napa Valley of Croatia, it has a rich cultural and historic heritage that goes back to prehistoric times.  It’s primary landscape is karst limestone, which has been quarried for centuries.  It was used by the Romans for their amphitheaters and temples, and it even found its way into the White House where it was used for decorative trim on the mantles during the 1902 renovation. While you’re on Brac, you’ll visit two award-winning Croatian wines and visit two authentic and traditional meals.

Hotel Park, Split

Day 5:  Ston & Dubrovnik
After departing the hotel, we will travel to Dubrovnik via the little town of Ston, famous for seafood, especially the oysters grown in Little Ston Bay.  We will take a private boat road around the bay at ride and sample the oysters, accompanied by wine.  Before returning to Stone, we will have a light lunch on a private island.  Afterwards, we continue on to Dubrovnik.  The evening is at leisure.

Villa Dubrovnik, Dubrovnik

Day 6:  Dubrovnik
After breakfast,  you will stroll the cobblestone streets with a local guide to see why George Bernard Shaw said “Those who seek paradise on earth must come to Dubrovnik.”  The old town is a UNESCO World Heritage site, and as we walk along its glorious wall with views of the magical Elafite Islands you’ll see why it’s the “Pearl of the Adriatic”.  You’ll visit the Rector’s Palace, a Franciscan monastery and the cathedral. Afternoon at leisure. Dinner at Villa Rusza, one of the best restaurants in the Adriatic.  On Kolocep Island, it has breathtaking views of the sea, framed by the Bokar and Lovrijenac Fortresses.

Villa Dubrovnik, Dubrovnik

Day 7: Dubrovnik & Konavale Valley
Today we’ll explore the Konavale Valley, renowned for it’s carefully preserved folk customs and traditional embroidery.  We’ll visit a local silk workshop to learn about silk production which has been made there for centuries.  Then you can take the opportunity to make your own silk if you like.  Afterward, we will continue to an ancient mill on the banks of the Ljuta River for a traditional lunch – prosciutto, local cheese and bread baked under a bell.  The rest of the day and evening will be at leisure in Dubrovnik.

Villa Dubrovnik, Dubrovnik

Day 8: Dubrovnik/Departure
Transfer to Dubrovnik Airport for your homeward flight.

BLITVA (SWISS CHARD WITH POTATOES)

This is quick Croatian side dish great accompaniment to grilled fish.

Serves 4-6

INGREDIENTS

1 lb. Yukon gold potatoes, peeled and cut into 1″ pieces
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
6 clove of garlic
⅓ cup olive oil
1 lb Swiss chard, tough stems removed, leaves cut into 2″ pieces
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

INSTRUCTIONS

Place potatoes in a 4-qt. saucepan and cover with water by 1″; bring to a boil over high heat, and cook until tender, about 5-10 minutes. Drain and set aside.  Add some oil to the saucepan; place over medium-high heat.  Add garlic; cook until soft, 1-2 minutes. Add potatoes; cook, string occasionally until golden, 5-7 minutes.  Stir in Swiss chard, cook until wilted – about 5 minutes.  Season with salt and pepper to taste.

                                                 – Saveur, April 2014

“The gastronomic culture of Croatia is undoubtably one of the most interesting and richest in Europe.”

– Zeljko Zutelija

Prices and departures upon request.

QUESTIONS? Ask Us.

 

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