Arrival airport: Dubrovnik (DBV)
Departure airport: Split (SPU)
No. of wineries visited:10
Dubrovnik – Konavale – Ston – Peljesac – Korcula – Hvar – Split
The crystal clear waters of the Adriatic, with their sapphire and emerald sparkles, is about as much beauty as a person can stand, and it forms the backdrop to this magical tour. We follow those jeweled tones as they lap up against some of the most beautiful coastline in Croatia and through some of its most beloved spots, many of which are designated UNESCO. We will taste some of the most distinguished wines that Croatia has to offer, picnic in vineyards, and feel bathed in light.
Dubrovnik is the obvious star, with its ancient city walls, lapped by the Adriatic, narrow streets full of charming bistros and galleries, but if you care to venture out from behind those battlements, there are so many more treasures to discover. In their haste to tick off the next famous place, people can miss a lot of what makes this area of the world so utterly charming. Centuries-old towns, with their imposing fortresses, guard salt flats and some of the best oysters you will ever taste. Stunning islands which bring out the artist in your soul, each offering their own style of wine, cheese, honey, and olive oils, not to mention gorgeous beaches.
Then, as if this wasn't enough, contained within stony and unforgiving karst soils that plunge dramatically into those sapphire waters, is a viticultural treasure trove of native Croatian varieties, many of which are still being cataloged and analyzed. The most famous of these is the Plavac Mali, and it excels on the steep slopes of the Pelješac peninsular, giving us a deep, intense, and full bodied reds, rich with dark berries and spice. For white wine lovers, there is the aromatic and deliciously dry Grk, charming with its delicate herbal notes, and then there is the Malvasija. Unique to this area, it is unrelated to the any other Malvasia in the world. Here it produces a lighter style dry white, crisp and refreshing, but also a liquid gold dessert wine that has historically graced the tables of royalty throughout the ages.
We finish, as we started, in yet another stunning location, the ancient Roman city of Split.
Arrival Day & Day 1
- Arrival in Dubrovnik, collection and transfer to Hotel Hilton Imperial or similar. Welcome dinner in local restaurant. Overnight in Dubrovnik.
- Morning tour of Dubrovnik, including the city walls, the Cathedral with its treasury, and the Franciscan Monastery. Lunch with wine pairing of Croatian food. Afternoon tour of the Konavle region, with, amongst others, a wine tasting at the soon-to-be iconic Karaman winery. Return to Dubrovnik for dinner, where you free to wander the romantic streets of Dubrovnik and discover a hidden restaurant, or explore the outer town and all of its great views. Overnight in Dubrovnik.
Day 2 & 3
- Depart Dubrovnik for the Pelješac Peninsular. Stop at the amazing city of Ston with its ancient salt flats, before boarding a private boat for an oyster tasting with wine, Rakija and Narancini. A visit to a winery or two before dinner. Overnight on the peninsular in Hotel Vatican or similar.
- Continue to explore the peninsular and it's wineries, with a delightful picnic lunch in a vineyard.Here, the crowning jewel in Croatia's wines is grown - Plavic Mali. It's best expressions can be found in the Dingač region, where the steep vineyards plunge into the Adriatic. Rich and deep, it is rumored to be the originator of Zinfandel and the wines often need to be aged, but reward your patience.
- Early ferry over to the island of Korcula, with its perfect beaches and lovely people. We touch on the claimed birthplace of Marco Polo, the famed explorer, as we wondering through the cobbled maze of streets, with the imposing backdrop of limestone cliffs. We drop into two wineries through the course of the day, so Grk and Pošip can charm you with their aromatic and delicious fruit notes. Free afternoon before Dinner and overnight on Korcula.
-- Morning departure for Hvar, with a tour of the island mixed in with wine and olive oil tasting. Bogdanjusa and Plavic Mali grapes are two of the may grown here, all indigenous to either the island or this region. Return to Hvar town for dinner. Overnight in Hvar at Hotel Adriana or similar.
Day 6 & Departure Day
- Morning departure to Split and its fantastic Roman ruins - another UNESCO site. Guided tour of the town before a sparkling wine tasting and dinner. Overnight in Split.
- After breakfast, last chance to box up your purchases before we depart for Split airport.