Adriatic Journey

A travellers journey through the diverse countries and cultures that share the magnificent Adriatic coast and its hinterland; Greece, Albania, Montenegro, Herzegovina, Croatia, Slovenia and Italy.

This region has so much to offer, with its rich history from ancient times to the present day, its stunningly beautiful coastline and dramatic mountain ranges, but best of all is the wide variety of cultures and traditions to be savoured, this trip is a lot of fun!

 Our itinerary will include.

Greece

  • Athens - One of the oldest cities in thes world, Athens has many magnificent ancient monuments and impressive museums. Explore the charm of the Plaka district.

  • The Corinth Canal - A spectacular man made canal, envisaged by Nero in Roman times, but not completed until 1893.

  • Meteora - Famous monasteries that perch atop rocky spires, built by monks between the 14th and 16th centuries.

  • Delphi - An important pilgrimage site since ancient times, Delphi is the place where the spirit of Apollo (the Oracle) was asked for guidance.

  • Vikos Gorge - A spectacular gorge in the Zagorian Mountains. The great day hike takes 6+hrs but shorter walks are available. Our two-night stay in the delightful "slate" village of Monodendri is always a highlight.

Albania

Experience a country enthusiastically shaking itself free after years of xenophobic rule. We loved it!

  • Girokaster - An impressive "slate" town in Southern Albania.

  • Berati - A well preserved Ottoman town, known as "the town of a thousand windows",

  • Tirane - A rapidly developing city. Visit the National Museum and other interesting sights for a fascinating insight into the lives, culture and aspirations of the Albania people.

Herzegovina and Montenegro

  • Kotor- Located at the head of the deepest fjord in Southern Europe, Kotor's twisting alleys and traditional buildings are a photographer's delight. The 1,500 step climb up Kotor Hill behind the town, offers spectacular views of the fjord and town below.

  • Mostar - The 500-year old bridge destroyed during the Bosnian war has been rebuilt and today stands as a powerful monument to the violent ethnic struggle that took place there in the 1990's.

Croatia

  • 7-day Croatian Coast Cruise -an A-grade boat, twin share cabins, with plenty of time ashore for walks, swimming and exploring the medieval villages and gorgeous offshore islands. Dine in a different port each evening. Cruising is the perfect mode of travel to experience the relaxing charm of Croatia’s famous coastline.

  • Plitvice Lakes National Park -This is an area of extraordinary natural beauty with 18 km of trails and foot-bridges linking the park’s 16 turquoise lakes and waterfalls. Fabulous easy walking trails.

  • Dubrovnik A walled city, the “pearl of the Adriatic”

  • Split - The Diocletian’s Palace is still the heart of the city.

  • Zagreb Croatia ’s capital city.

Slovenia

  • Lake Bled - Stay three nights in the heart of the majestic Julian Alps, surrounded by stunning scenery. There are walking, cycling and kayaking opportunities.

  • Postojna Caverns - Ride a train deep down into the gigantic caves at Postojna.

  • Predjama Castle - A medieval fortress built into a cliff.

Conclude our journey with a "tiny touch of Italy"

  • Venice - A unique city of “light and water”, the perfect place to end our journey.

Draft Itinerary Outline (subject to change)

Day 1. Auckland to Flight

Day 2. Athens - arrive early afternoon.

Day 3. Athens - city sightseeing.

Day 4. Athens to Delphi - via the Corinth Canal and the Acro-Corinth, a massive hill fortress that overlooks the canal.

Day 5. Delphi to Meteora - visit to the Delphi site before driving to Meteora.

Day 6. Meteora to Monodendri - visit the monasteries, after lunch drive to the Zagorian Mountains via the Kipi Bridges.

Day 7. Monodendri - a day hike in the Vikos Gorge.

Day 8. Monodendri to Berati - travel up the Central Valley of Albania via Girokaster

Day 9. Berati to Tirane 

Day 10. Tirane - city sights.

Day 11. Tirane to Budva - visit Kotor

Day 12. Budva to Dubrovnik - a free morning before driving into Croatia.

Day 13. Dubrovnik - kayak around the walls, city sightseeing includes walking the ramparts and visiting the Fort.

Day 14. Dubrovnik to Mostar - visit the famous Bridge and Old Town. Mostar is well known for its great dining options.

Day 15. Mostar to Split - morning drive, free afternoon to enjoy Split.

Day 16 to Day 22. Cruise -  a 7night cruise as we explore Croatia's wonderful islands and the mainland coastline.

Day 23. Cruise to Plitvice - leave the boat to resume our land journey by driving to Plitvice Lakes National Park.

Day 24. Plitvice Lakes National Park to Zagreb -  explore this gorgeous park before driving to Zagreb.

Day 25. Zagreb to Bled - travel via Ljubljana, Slovenia's capital city, to stay in Bled.

Day 26. Bled - visit nearby Bohinj for hiking and take an aerial tramway for great views.

Day 27. Bled - more sights and free time in and around Lake Bled, opportunity to cycle and or kayak if you wish.

Day 28. Bled to Postojna - visit the gigantic Postojna Caverns and the medieval castle of Predjama.

Day 29. Postojna to Venice - arrive early afternoon.

Day 30. Venice - city sightseeing and free time.

Day 31. Venice to Flight - free day, mid evening flight

Day 32. (In flight)

Day 33. Arrive Auckland

 

Travel Style and Transport: travel light, travel local. We will use a combination of train, boat, public and private bus/vans. Incorporating public transport and sometimes staying in family run accommodations will bring you the rewarding experience of closer contact with the local people and their way of life. Sightseeing will essentially be on-foot and wherever possible day walking will feature. When there are longer walks, shorter less strenuous options will be available.

Luggage: A light bag of around 10/12kgs is essential as you must be able to comfortably handle your own baggage; on some days to carry it 10 minutes or so between transport depots and accommodation, including up and down steps and stairs. Soft-sided wheelie bags or light weight packs are suitable, but please, no hard or semi-hard bags. Be aware that most hotels and transport terminals do not have elevators. Day Bag - a lightweight day/sightseeing bag. A fold-away nylon type is perfect.

Accommodation: Hotels/Hostels/ family pensions, Grade Star** to Star ***. Throughout the region rooms and facilities are clean and tidy, with private bathrooms the norm. On the Cruise - twin-bunked cabins, with private facilities.

Meals: Included meals - 27 breakfasts / 4 dinners / 7 lunches (numbers to be confirmed). Other lunches/breakfasts - you can purchase supplies at local shops, lunches are often picnic affairs and for dinners eat at local styled restaurants. During the cruise breakfast and a 3-course lunch are included daily, but not dinners.

Price Includes: Accommodation, Auckland to Auckland airfares (in a specific class), transport, a full programme of sightseeing excursions, entries and services as detailed in the itinerary. Meals as specified.

Criteria for Taking Part: Participants will need to be moderately fit and active, be prepared for some simple family run accommodations and hostels and for using a variety of public transport, with all its hassles and rewards. A good degree of walking fitness and agility is required as steps and stairs are definitely a feature of the urban landscape! 

FACT FILE

Trip Code: Adriatic Journey

Date:  Either May/June or Late Aug/Sep

Duration: 33 days

Party: 14 to 18 + leader

 Price Guide :  2018 trip was $12,155

Current Status: Keep Me Posted List