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Top Trip Memories

  • Visiting the treasure trove of Roman ruins.  Rome conquered the area in the 2nd century BC, ruled there for some 500 years and left behind profuse evidence of their stay.  
  • Discovering the Colosseum-like amphitheater in Pula, one of the best-preserved in the world, which held 23,000 people when gladiators fought there.
  • Sharing very personal stories at the memorably named Museum of Broken Relationships in Zagreb, which describes with poignant words and interesting artifacts the sad endings of bonds between married couples, lovers, and parents and children.
  • Spending a night at a farmhouse in Slavonoa, Croatia’s “breadbasket” from which much of the country’s crops and livestock come.  What now are guest rooms were once used to store equipment, crops and other farm-related items.
  • Savoring Croatia’s eclectic cuisine, which combines Italian, Turkish and other culinary influences. 
  • Accompanying a truffle hunter and his dog on a search in the woods, then sampling the finds served in a variety of ways.  (The best white truffles in the world come from the Istrian Peninsula, which Croatia shares with Slovenia and Italy).
  • Enjoying the humor that Croatians employ to poke fun at both themselves and their former Yugoslavian neighbors.  Old animosities among ethnic and religious groups that sparked armed conflicts in the past remain, but today they’re largely replaced by verbal attacks that combine jests with jibes.       
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Tour Tips

  • Traveling with a knowledgeable guide in Croatia can provide invaluable background on the long history of the country, as well as its more recent history in the Bosnian War of the early to mid-1990s.
  • Look for tours that combine both the dramatic coastal cities and islands with excursions into the interior of the country; Zagreb is well worth a visit.
  • Be aware that traveling in Croatia requires climbing some steep steps to walk on Dubrovnik’s city walls and more climbing to visit Roman ruins, medieval castles and other sites, many of which were built on top of high hills for defensive purposes.   
  • Because of the hilly terrain in some places, bus rides can induce motion sickness.  If you’re prone to that malady, carry along pills to combat the sensation.
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Croatia Travel Reviews & Ratings

4.7 out of 5

100%

recommend

2,017 Reviews

  • Excellent 1,488
  • Great 511
  • Average 14
  • Disappointing 2
  • Terrible 2

Rating Details

  • Value
    4.7
  • Guide
    4.7
  • Activities
    4.7
  • Lodging
    4.7
  • Transportation
    4.7
  • Meals
    4.7

Tour Reviews

Great - but not 8 days

Croatia: Islands & Mountains

3.0
April 2017
Exodus Travels
Recommend: Yes
Guide: Zelko is the best guide you can have in the region!
Transportation: great if you're about 5' tall - otherwise, leg room is a la Ryanair/Air Transat
Itinerary: great - for 6 days. Trip starts on Day 2 (guide and most of the group arrive near midnight on "day 1") and ends at 6am on Day 8 (guide takes group to airport at 5am on "day 8").
Hiking up in the Paklenica mountains.

Best.leader.ever.

If you're going in July: it gets really (really) hot.

Should have spent 1 day in Paklenica, 1 day in Plitvice - instead of 2 days in Paklenica, at 30+ degrees temperatures.

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G Adventures allows me to travel like a local and experience things I would never get on a big coach tour

Volcano Adventure – San José to Antigua

5.0
March 2017
G Adventures
Recommend: Yes
G Adventures allows me to travel like a local and experience things I would never get on a big coach tour. It gives me the chance to have a little adventure with the security of knowing I have an on hand expert to help if anything were to go wrong or just to assist with anything I might want to see or do. It is a perfect mix of "group touring" and the flexibility that you usually only get with independent travel. Being only my second trip with G, I don't have a lot to compare it to but loved it just as much as my first experience with the company last year. As a travel agent, it's really important to me to have found a company that really believes in what they do especially when it comes to sustainable travel. But also one that really believes in their people. I can see this all through your marketing but I feel it out on the road as well.
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Amazing Europe Trip

Mega European

5.0
February 2017
Topdeck
Recommend: Yes
There are so many great things to say about my European trip of a lifetime. The people that made it was my fellow topdeckers and of course the Fab Tour guide Matt Stewart. This is a trip that I will never forget, so many lovely memories I will cherish forever. We was very lucky with Matt because he really took time to talk to us and make us all feel relaxed with each other and asked us what we wanted to do. He was so knowledgable about all the places we went to, I remember thinking to myself this guy is pretty cool the fact he knows so well about the history and culture of each place especially the amount of cities we travelled to. Matt made the trip fun, interesting, exciting and I hope that if I was to ever do a top deck again one day he would be the tour guide or I think I would be disappointed. Have recommended top deck to so many people, memories I will have for a lifetime.

Georgina staines
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Croatia islands and mountains sept 2016

Croatia: Islands & Mountains

5.0
February 2017
Exodus Travels
Recommend: Yes
A memorable and very enjoyable holiday. We hesitated to book initially as we weren't sure about Croatia and almost booked an Italian trip but are now so glad we did. The guide was excellent and gave us a real insight into the country and its people. We loved the walks all came with excellent views and the scenery was far lovelier than we had expected it to be.
The walk in the Velika Paklenica national park and the stop for bean soup.

He made the holiday for us, he worked tirelessly always with our best interests at heart. An excellent communicator and a man who quickly became a friend.

Walking sticks might be useful as paths are a bit rocky.

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Packed with activities

Croatia: Islands & Mountains

4.0
February 2017
Exodus Travels
Recommend: Yes
Looking back it is amazing how much we packed in. Dubrovnik was very touristy and crowded but worth visiting. Great meal fish at the Moby Dick. Hotel Sumratin room ok but breakfast bad go to a cafe instead! Great walking with views. Brac very picturesque. Beach quite crowded with a sea gym feature. We got the boat back to the old town recommended. Split just enough time to see the basics and then onto Krka which is also crowded. Starigrad Paklenica in a beautiful walking area with limestone rocks. Hotel the best of the three. If you are flying later( to Manchester via Ryanair) definitely worth to beautiful Zadar. Worth waiting to book transport to the airport to see how many going later and can book taxi locally via the guide.
The last day with the walk up to The Doorstep overlooking the sea surrounded by limestone rock formations.

Excellent. Good sense of humour and lots of fun. Helped us rearranging taxis to Zadar on the last day. Carried my case at the last hotel preserving my knees for the walk!

See advice about booking taxis above.

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Top Tour Operators and Travel Companies


Croatia Trips & Tour Advice

If any country has played a role as a crossroad of history, it’s present-day Croatia.  Because of its key location spanning Eastern and Western cultures, this West Virginia-size nation, along with neighbors which comprised the former Yugoslavia, provided a bridge and melting pot of peoples over the centuries.  Among those who came, went and left their influences were ancient Greeks, Romans and Venetians. 

This rich kaleidoscope of cultures, ethnicities and religions, along with its storied history, natural beauty and other attractions, has elevated Croatia into a major magnet for travelers seeking an authentic experience. The result: While the country ranks only 127th in size, it’s the world’s 18th most popular tourist destination.

Croatia’s cities, towns and villages serve as living history museums that immerse visitors in centuries past.

Dubrovnik, “Pearl of the Adriatic”

Dubrovnik, a World Heritage Site, was a major city-state and maritime trade center from the 14th through 18th centuries. Its reach and power throughout the Mediterranean and Adriatic Seas rivaled that of Venice. 

The intact fortress walls that surround the old city, its wealth of stunning architecture, historic monuments and maze of narrow streets transport visitors back to those heady times -- one of the main reasons it has served as a shooting location for the HBO TV series Game of Thrones

Dubrovnik suffered heavy damage in the early 1990s, when Croatia sought to become a sovereign country following the breakup of Yugoslavia but was opposed and attacked by local Serb forces and the Serb-controlled Yugoslav People's Army. 

Since then, the historic core of the city has been restored to its former splendor.  The city walls, accentuated by three forts, 16 towers and other fortifications, are among the best-preserved and most beautiful in Europe. Built over a span of 600 years beginning in the 12th century, they create a 1-1/4-mile long defensive ring around the old city, and a “walk on the walls” is a favorite activity for visitors.     

Zagreb, Split, and Beyond

Trip to Zagreb, Croatia’s capital, claims architectural treasures that echo the charms of Vienna, Budapest, Prague, and other great European cities. Many historic monuments grace the Lower Town and Baroque Upper Town. More contemporary touches include the seemingly wall-to-wall cafes and coffee houses that are packed with people throughout the days and evenings.

Split boasts Roman ruins – the 4th century Emperor Diocletian’s Palace -- built right into the center of the city. (Remnants of Roman structures are grouped along the coastline, dotted throughout the countryside and preserved in cities.) A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Split also contains medieval and Renaissance architecture. Tiny Trogir,  another World Heritage Site along with coast, is a medieval gem.

The defensive walls that encircle the medieval hill hamlet of Hum (pronounced Hoom) are distinctive because houses were built into them. Tiny Hum consists of just two short streets, has been listed in the Guinness Book of World Records as the smallest town in the world, and locals claim a current population of 17, 18 or “about 20.”

The adjacent seaside resorts of Lovran and Opatija (oh-pah-tee-uh) have a history of tourism dating back to Roman times, when both were popular with patrician families who built impressive villas. At the end of the 19th century, the towns once again became fashionable vacation destinations for aristocratic families, whose elegant homes still grace the setting.

Mother Nature at Her Best

The main natural attraction is Plitvice Lakes National Park, which encompasses a series of 16 lakes linked by waterfalls and rivulets that cascade from one to another.  The lakes themselves reflect the colors of their surroundings, from emerald green and turquoise to blue and gray.

Another popular setting is the line of beaches strung out along Croatia’s long coastline on the Adriatic Sea.  While most are pebble beaches, there also are inviting sandy stretches – and 97 of them have Blue Flag status, an international award based upon water quality and other standards.

The Croatian coast is also lined with a thousand little islands like Korcula and Hvar, which combine medieval architecture and natural beauty. Small ship cruises often stop there. 

Related Guides

Continent:

Europe

Local Attractions: 

Dubrovnik, Hvar, Plitvice National Park, Rovinj, Pula Arena, Diocletian's Palace & Many More

Top Activities:

Small-Ship Cruises, Sailing Cruises & Historic Sightseeing

Similar Destinations:      

ItalyFranceSpain & Greece

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