9 days/8 nights
Flavors of Istria is a private luxury tour of Istria that focuses on the best of the country’s outstanding art, culture and cuisine. Begin your tour in the exciting city of Zagreb and soak up its history and culture. Visit the quaint and romantic Upper town and enjoy walking through its car-free winding streets. Also visit the many museums and cultural highlights this bustling city has to offer.
Continue your journey in the breathtaking Istrian peninsula and sample your way through the food and wine that are celebrated in this area. Indulge yourself with excellent homemade food and even bring some of the areas specialties to your family and friends back home. Culminate this journey by traveling to and Pula & Poreč to see some of Croatia’s most important history.
Enjoy the natural beauty in Plitvice National park before ending your trip with even more traditional cuisine.Less
Arrive in Zagreb and transfer to your hotel. Day at leisure. Zagreb is Croatia’s capital, as well as a business center, university center, city of culture, art and entertainment. Springing up from two medieval settlements – Kaptol and Gradec, which form the core of the old Upper Town, it is a true Central European city and with the surrounding settlements it has about one million inhabitants. Overnight in Zagreb.
Zagreb will charm you with its abundance of rich cultural heritage that dates back to the medieval days. We will stroll past baroque-style mansions and baronial residences, and admire the beautifully crafted facades. In the company of your local expert, we will visit the symbol of Zagreb: St. Mark’s church in the Upper Town, which houses the remarkable works of Ivan Meštrović, its most famous sculptor. Come to the Lotrščak Tower and inhale this most beautiful view of the city. The attractions here are plentiful, the culture, quite mesmerizing. There will be enough time for a delicious fresh baked pastry and a cup of excellent coffee in one of the side walk cafes in Gornji Grad. Overnight in Rovinj. (B)
Istrian turbulent and exciting history also influenced its gastronomy. Every nation which has been here left a part of its culture and customs. This is why Istrian cuisine today is a blend of different historical and cultural influences, the strongest among them are Venetian, Austro-Hungarian and, of course, Croatian. Prevailing life style is Mediterranean. The food is cooked on an open heart fire: veal, lamb, goat meat with potatoes and vegetables, ombolo (loin), Istrian sausages, beefsteaks, etc. with the special attention to the seasonal delicacies such as truffles, asparagus and wild mushrooms. Overnight in Rovinj. (B, L)
Truffles are a group of underground fungi with a very specific taste, which are considered the ultimate in gastronomy. They grow in the very heart of Istria, in the damp and grey soil of the forests near Buzet, close to the Mirna River. This hidden treasure is found with the help of specially trained dogs. The area that is rich in truffles is in the northwest to Buzet and Lanišće to the Raša River in the area of Labin and south to Pazin. Our tasting includes a variety of wonderful truffle products–cheese with truffles and even truffle biscuits. Then we head on our adventure, led by specially trained dogs to the famous Motovun forests to try your luck with black and even the precious white truffles! Overnight in Rovinj. (B)
Poreč is a town located in the heart of the western coast of Istria. A town of culture, tourism, sport and entertainment, it has been recognized and awarded for the beauty of its public spaces and its cleanliness many times over. It is home to the famous basilica of St. Euphrasius, a XII century UNESCO World Heritage site that features artwork, mosaics and stained glass. Continue to 3000 year old town of Pula, the heart of the Peninsula, houses the best preserved Roman amphitheater in the World. We will saunter along old Pula and discover its many mysteries and whispers from the past. Among these is the alluring atmosphere of prehistoric times and roman gladiatorial combats, which nowadays is a unique stage for festivals and concerts. Our journey through the old city will include the Roman Amphitheatre and its underground chambers, and the many city gates and walls, Triumphal arch of Sergians, the Roman Forum and mosaic, and the Cathedral of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Overnight in Rovin j. (B)
A symphony of gastronomic and viticulture delights – visits to two major wine cellars (Matošević and Pilato) with an authentic Istrian lunch. We start with the wine cellar of Croatia’s best known wine maker, Ivica Matošević, to taste some of the best wines accompanied by local delicacies. We’ll stop for a seafood lunch at beautiful Lim Fjord then it’s on to picturesque Vižinada to enjoy the wines of the Pilato family, best known for their exceptional Chardonnay and Malvasia. Return to your hotel in the afternoon. Overnight in Rovinj. (B)
Day at leisure. Rovinj is considered to be one of the most beautiful towns on the Croatian coast because of its unique appearance and its wonderful natural surroundings. It developed in the tradition of a small fishing town under the watchful eye of its patron saint, Sv. Eufemija (St. Euphemia), with a distinctive form of boat, the batana, and the recognizable bitinada songs. Overnight in Rovinj. (B)
Discover Plitvice Lakes National Park – the unique oasis of rare natural beauty. It is one of Europe’s most dazzling nature reserve parks, and was truly created by nature. The park consists of 16 connecting lakes and sport unique cascades of murmuring waterfalls. Plitvice Lakes National Park was recognized and protected by UNESCO as part of the world’s natural heritage in 1979. We will take a lively walk along the lakes and breathe the fresh mountain air while listening to the captivating sounds of nature. Next, a boat ride across the largest of the lakes, we will experience a unique perspective of nature: the lake is rife with crystal clear emerald water and fringed with bubbly white waterfalls! Overnight in Zagreb. (B)
After breakfast, transfer to the airport for your flight home.
Hotel Regent Esplanade *****, Zagreb
Hotel Lone *****, Rovinj