Captivating Croatia, Luxury Land Journey

The Epitome of Croatia
Gourmet Stars & Vineyard Trails
Authentic Luxury Pre-Land Journey

Sep 15 – 21, 2024

Authentic Croatia by Land

Are you a world traveler, gourmand, and oenophile? If yes, this is the perfect journey for you! Food illuminates on people's way of life, their cultural values, and their perspectives on life. It has a way of bringing people together! But how it can be so powerful? If you think about it there are 5 senses used when tasting food and drink. First, you’ll look at it with eyes, then you smell it, touch it and taste it...and you’ll listen to it, right! Whenever we interact with food, our senses are awakened – which means that experiencing food while you're traveling will increase the intensity of the memories built. How beautiful is that! We all travel to experience another culture and to learn something, yet we often end up spending our time in a ‘touristy’ area. It’s important to visit main tourist attractions, but essential to interact with locals to get a true experience of one destination. If we are not spending longer time in a destination, it’s hard to get to know everyday life and this is where the food plays such an important roll. It is one of the best ways to experience a new destination, get to know the culture and local people. It is an essential part of life and community, there’s no authentic travel experience without it. Local Cuisine gives people an identity – recipes and cooking techniques are passed down from generation to generation. It’s an insight into the history, we learn traditions and societal norms. Lastly, it’s a great opportunity to learn another language – different ways of sayings to open a meal and thanks for it to your host. Knowing local phrases will not only help you immerse in the culture and build quite a hefty vocabulary and locals will certainly appreciate it. It’s the moments when we interact with people that we remember the most, once we get around the table with newly formed friends, open conversation, and share food & good wine! Moreover, positively interacting with locals can promote sustainable tourism by creating mutual understanding between both local residents and visitors! We invite you to join us on this unique trip by land by sea - hosted by Lisa Albert, an American with a Croatia heart and Goran Kovacevic – born and raised Croatian. The two of them will take you to their favorite places! Throughout you’ll enjoy gourmet star restaurants, the best wineries in the country, and local tavernas (off the beaten path) that you would never visit on your own. It’s an unparalleled journey!


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Unique Gastro Experiences with locals

  • Experience the culture of Croatia through unique gastro experiences with local experts
  • Visit the famous winery in Croatia where Anthony Bourdain filmed ‘No Reservations’ and learn about the wine-making process while indulging in some of the best local wines
  • Taste some of the local products that are unique to the region, including cheese, cured meats, and olive oil
  • Enjoy outdoor meals in hidden local tavernas and exclusive restaurants, where you can immerse yourself in the local cuisine

Timeless Destinations

  • Explore breathtaking sites recognized by UNESCO World Heritage, such as Diocletian's Palace in
  • Split and the historic city of Dubrovnik
  • Venture off the beaten path to discover more than a dozen towns and villages with their own distinct charm and character
  • Witness the beauty of nature at the spectacular Plitvice Lakes National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage site
  • Step back in time and experience the history of Croatia at the Roman Amphitheatre in Pula

Professional Guides & Boutique Accommodations

  • Our handpicked professional local guides will provide you with historical information and interesting insights about the locations, legends, and local culture
  • Stay in selected boutique hotels that reflect the unique character of each destination
  • Enjoy the comfort of a private guided tour escort throughout the journey

Authentic Experiences

  • Go on a truffle hunt in Istria, one of the few places in the world where these rare delicacies can be found
  • Visit and meet unique local wine producers, where you can learn about the wine-making process and sample a variety of indigenous Croatian wines
  • Meet local olive oil producers and taste the freshest and most flavorful olive oil straight from the source

Itinerary at a glance


Day 1 – Sep 15 – Zagreb
Dobrodosli! – Welcome to Croatia! From UNESCO heritage sites, fascinating history and culture to beautiful beaches, secluded islands and clear seas discover the breathtaking beauty of Croatia, the jewel of the Adriatic! Private transfer from Zagreb airport to your hotel is arranged. Your driver will be waiting for you at the airport with nameboard. Check in to your 5* hotel in the heart Zagreb, relax and freshen up before your welcome dinner at a renowned restaurant and meeting with your new fellow travelers. The Esplanade Zagreb Hotel is the most famous and one of the most luxurious hotel in Zagreb , in April 2015 marked the 90th year of its existence. Its timeless elegance, sophistication, and charm, which back in 1925 attracted passengers of the famous Orient Express, today is considered an elite venue and cultural historic icon of Zagreb. Overnight in Hotel Esplanade 5* in Zagreb.
Day 2 – Sep 16 – Zagreb
Breakfast at hotel. Unveil the secrets behind the old facades, discover the hidden courtyards, and revive the stories from the past. We’ll give you an entirely new perspective of the Zagreb City. Meeting with our local guide for a private walking city tour of Zagreb. We’ll start with exploring the capital’s historic center, Gornji Grad (“Upper Town”), to see the top tourist attractions, find the most Instagram-worthy spots and walk on picturesque cobblestone streets. St. Mark’s Church is one of Zagreb’s most emblematic buildings. Not surprising as just a glance at the gorgeous tiled roof can take your breath away. A Short walk from the Zagreb cathedral, in a magnificent 200 y.o. brick-vaulted cellar, the first Croatian wine shop (Vinoteka) was born 30 years ago which gave birth to a renewed Croatian wine scene. The pioneers of this enological project have created a true wine temple to be enjoyed by wine enthusiasts and lovers from all over the world. The owners’ passion for wine is evident as well as their extensive knowledge. After the wine tasting we’ll head to a local restaurant where you’ll have a chance to try some traditional dishes. Late afternoon and evening at leisure. The fairytale street of Tkalčićeva, which snakes up from focal Jelačić Trg, was once the flowing stream of Medveščak. The little side streets leading off it, Splavnica (from splav, raft) and Krvavi most “’Bloody Bridge”), link to its watery origins and colorful past as the flashpoint in local disputes over the centuries. For two decades, this atmospheric thoroughfare has provided Zagreb with its prime bar crawl, a constant current of revelers moving from spot to spot. Overnight in Hotel Esplanade 5* in Zagreb.
Day 3 – Sep 17 – Zagreb – Buje – Rovinj
Breakfast at the hotel and check out! Morning departure and meeting with our driver for a private transfer from Zagreb to Rovinj in Istria. When in Istria, only a short drive away takes us to the Kabola Winery. The story of wine growing in the Markežić family dates back to 1891, when it lay the first cornerstone with Momjan Muscat. Since then, hardworking, and patient hands have been weaving the incredible tale of their wines, inspired by the desire to stand out by being genuine and unique. They’ve managed to shape their recognizable style through the Kabola brand. Final drive to Rovinj, check into the hotel and relax. Grand Hotel Park 5* harmoniously situated on Rovinj’s eastern shore, offers remarkable vistas of its picture-perfect old town. Later in the evening please join us for the evening walk in the Old Town of Rovinj. This evening you’ll enjoy Croatian pizza for dinner together with your fellow travelers. Seriously, Croatian pizza is a culinary meal that should be on your must-try list. The common ground of all good Croatian pizzerias is a wood-burning oven, thin crust, many choices of toppings, and an abundance of tomato sauce on the side. It doesn’t carry the weight of tradition like its Italian counterpart — and that can be a good thing. Croatian pizza is a little different, but once you try it, you’ll be telling your friends. Overnight in Grand Park Hotel 5* in Rovinj.
Day 4 – Sep 18 – Rovinj
Breakfast at the hotel. Day at leisure and free time to explore the gem of the Croatian coastline and Istrian peninsula, a beautiful town of Rovinj. In addition, plenty of time to relax and enjoy the amenities in one of the best hotels in Croatia – Grand Park Hotel. Your Tour Manager will advise about all options how to seize the day and get the most from the destination visited. In the evening you will experience a unique gastronomic adventure in the Michelin Star restaurant Agli Amici. This restaurant with a selected menu brings Michelin-starred cuisine to Rovinj. Situated in the very heart of the marina, the restaurant offers an astonishing vista of the old town center of Rovinj and the island of St. Catherine, as well as a unique and unforgettable gourmet experience. The restaurant was awarded a Michelin star within a year of its opening. This unique and elegant spot is located alongside the gorgeous promenade connecting the Grand Park Hotel Rovinj and the marina, where its picturesque terrace offers a direct panorama of the sea and the old town of Rovinj. The Agli Amici and Istria tasting menus bear immediately recognizable signature, which has remained faithful to the vision of ingenuous cuisine, sophisticated simplicity and strong personality. Each and every dish is bursting with flavor-filled stories meeting the specific aromas of Istria and the local coastline. Overnight in Grand Park Hotel 5* in Rovinj.
Day 5 – Sep 19 – Rovinj – Pula – Central Istria
Breakfast at the hotel. In the morning we will depart for the day’s journey to explore the Istrian peninsula. Our next stop is Pula City – it is the largest town on the Istrian peninsula and offers a diversity of attractions to lovers of culture. The rich itinerary of its three-thousand-year-old history, where every step you take through the old town is a landmark, begins and ends with the Roman amphitheater. After visiting an amazing Roman heritage still well preserved we will head for a full-day excursion gastro adventure to central Istria. Today you will enjoy a unique experience during a truffle hunt accompanied by specially trained dogs. After an aperitif, we will go to the forest near the Motovun woods and Buzet – the hometown of the truffles. The biggest truffle in the world was found in this area in 2000 (1,3 kg!) with the help of dogs, specially trained to find the underground mushroom using their sense of smell. The annual “Days of Truffles” are held every October, where you can sample dishes made from freshly picked truffles. After the activity of searching for the truffles for about 45 minutes, you will learn how to prepare a meal with truffles. Drive back to beautiful Rovinj, free time in the evening, and prepare for our next adventure tomorrow. Overnight in Grand Park Hotel 5* in Rovinj.
Day 6 – Sep 20 – Rovinj – Plitvice Lakes National Park
Breakfast at the hotel and check out. Time to say goodbye to beautiful Istria, a drive to another gem of Croatia – National Park Plitvice Lakes were we will stop for a private guided visit. Head for a truly amazing and spectacular stop – the Plitvice Lakes National Park. Upon arrival at Entrance 1, meet your local English-speaking guide and explore the Plitvice Lakes Park. The first Croatian national park and a UNESCO World Heritage site, Plitvice Lakes offers its visitors a blend of vivid colors, sounds, and smells that are spectacular and memorable. Its 16 cascading lakes and numerous waterfalls make up one of the greatest wonders of the world. After the tour will enjoy Lika specialties – in a local restaurant. A unique place with the ambiance of a traditional house in Lika, in which authentic dishes are prepared. In the middle of the restaurant, there is an open-hearth fireplace, where lamb is roasted on a spit, and where other food specialties from Lika are prepared “under iron cover.” Ham, “basa” cottage cheese, lamb under iron cover, grilled meats, roast potatoes, trout, the Lika fritters, and the Lika strudels made of cheese, apple, or plum, are just some of the specialties of this renowned restaurant. This evening we will spend the night in the hotel in the vicinity of NP Plitvice Lakes. Dinner in hotel. Overnight in Hotel Degenija 4* in Plitvice area.
Day 7 – Sep 21 – Plitvice – Plastovo – Split
Breakfast at the hotel and check out. Our journey continues through the beautiful Lika region. In the morning, after a few hours of driving, we will reach the most popular region of Croatia, a stunning Dalmatia. We’ll make a stop before Split – to visit Bibich Estate where you’ll enjoy a unique wine-pairing lunch experience at Bibich tasting room. This experience you will never forget. Food courses inspired by tradition and made from local groceries are perfectly paired with their wines, while the presentation is done by the winemaker himself. All ingredients are artisanal – olive oil, cured meats, dried fruits, etc. – hand-made by their family or local producers. You will experience a presentation by a professional enologist about everything they do for heritage preservation – their products, ways of vinification, grape varieties, and vineyards, and get familiar with the influence of the microclimate and the character of the region. Final drive to Split will follow, upon arrival to Split, it is time to say goodbye to your fellow traveler OR you may join us and continue your journey on the beautiful private chartered yacht from Split to Dubrovnik with other fellow travelers from Sept 21 – Sept 28, 2024. Bon Voyage / Sretan Put!

(Bon Voyage and Thank you!)

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