Croatia

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From hiking to scuba diving, Croatia is an excellent choice for adventure seeking tourists. However, if you intend going sailing or yachting on this beautiful coast and the Adriatic Sea, it’s better to arrange these prior to your arrival. In general, sports are considered a major part of Croatian life; this is largely due to the role that they have had in promoting national prestige such as the Wimbledon champion known as Goran Ivanišević.

Hiking is still a popular activity in spring and early summer before the oppressive heat drives people to the beach for relief. The woods of Samobor Hills and Mount Medvednica are easy ramblings with well-used paths that cross and are also close to Zagreb. On the Adriatic Coast, Učka is easily accessible and safe for moderate hikers. It is situated directly  above the famous Opatija and Lovran.

     The challenging Velebit range covers 100km along the eastern shore of the Kvarner Gulf. The dominant hiking areas are found near Senj, the Paklenica National Park  that is at the southern end and the Zavižan summit. West of Split, Dalmatia offers the main peaks Kozjak and Mosor while, east of Split, Biokovo, that is above the Makarska Riviera, presents the greatest challenge of the Adriatic Mountains. Although ranges like Velebit are optimal for long treks, no local travel agencies currently organize such trips. Similarly, local hiking associations run mountain refuges, but these are never longer than 36 hours since they mostly operate on weekends.

     The Lonjskopolje, Inland Istria, the Dalmatian islands and the Baranja region of the eastern Slavonia are Croatia’s top cycling locations.  All routes are well-marked and the special maps have been published by local tourist organizations. In almost all resorts, it’s easy to hire a bike. When transporting a bike on inter-city trains, use the marked luggage vans – particularly those that run on the following routes: ZagrebOsijek, Zagreb-Split, ZagrebVaraždin and ZagrebRijeka. A flat fee of 30Kn is charged per bike but you will need to reserve space in advance if you’re with a group of more than four people. This must be done in the station of departure. On inter-city buses, you may place your bike in the baggage compartments, but most of the passengers travel with big luggage so there is seldom a space for bikes. Also, few drivers are accommodating about stowing bikes beneath the bus. It is best to confirm these regulations when you purchase your bus ticket and then arrive at the bus early so that you can stake your claim to space.

     The River Cetina lies southeast of Split, while the River Zrmanja is east of Zadar. They are both good choices for rafting trips, and many agencies organize these trips during the season from May to September. However, in July, waters can sometimes drop too low for safe trips on the Zrmanja. Prices for a day trip vary from 230 – 260K per person

     The extensive marine life combined with the Adriatic Sea’s crystalline waters has resulted in the developing of scuba-diving; this, in turn, led to more diving centres opening on the coastline. Most of them offer equipment rental, lessons and tours. Introductory courses cost 250-350Kn; other courses are also available. If you are already a qualified diver, you will need to pay a registration fee of 100Kn before you will be allowed to dive in Croatia. You can do this at registered dive centres or the local harbour master’s office (lučkakapetanija). The mid-Dalmatian Kornati Islands and the island of Mljet near Dubrovnik are both National Parks and their clear waters and extensive marine life make them two of the best diving areas. However, you must arrange dive tours for these sites through licensed operators.

     Serious windsurfers have two options: on the island of Brač, Bolis on the north side of the channel that divides Brač and Hvar, where calm waters and the perfect wind make this the number 1 spot for windsurfing. In addition, Bol is a developed resort that offers numerous options for accommodation and nightlife.In contrast, the second best spot is theKučište–Viganj area that is in thePelješac Channel that divides Korčula from the mainland on the west of Orebić, and offers unspoiled villages with a handful of campsites and private rooms.

Another watersport that is gaining popularity is sea kayaking, which allows visitors to explore the coast around Dubrovnik, the Elaphite Islands and Hvar. With numerous Hvar and Dubrovnik-based travel agents, organizing half- and full-day tours is easy. No prior experience or formal training is required as kayakers are led by a tour leader and are given a brief lesson in using a paddle.

    In winter, some skiing is available in Sljeme on Mount Medvednica that is outside Zagreb and Platak, which is inland from Rijeka. However, the location isn’t worth a special trip because the altitudes (1,035m and 1,363m) are not high enough to guarantee snow for long stretches of time. For this reason, Croatians approach skiing as a spontaneous trip when the weather permits and equipment can be rented at both locations.

    For retail experiences, Zagreb offers the largest range on the Adriatic coast including secondhand clothing, books, music and CDs in addition to regular flea markets and collectors’ markets.  There is also a variety of boutiques that stock household items and locally made fashion accessories that are slowly becoming available in Dubrovnik, Rovinj and Split, too.

    Food and drink are two of the top souvenir ideas for Croatia and top-selling local wines are often available in the upper-end supermarkets. However, a wider selection is guaranteed at specialist wine stores known as vinotekas. Another gift idea is bottled herb-flavoured and fragmented rakija. Among the delicatessen options that are freely available the fruit-based delicatessen preserves such as figs in honey, pršut, pâtés and truffle-based sauces. Bags of lavender from the island of Hvar and soaps made of olive oil with local herb scents are also good souvenirs.

Similarly, lacemaking and intricate embroidery make popular gifts. The first is still a traditional job in the town of Pag where lacemakers sell their products from living-room windows and doorways. The embroidery featuring fold motifs makes beautiful keepsakes but can be expensive.

 


Featured Activities

Fabergé Museum

Housed in the suitably opulent Shuvalov Palace, the Fabergé Museum is a tribute to legendary Russian jeweler Peter Carl Fabergé.

Neuschwanstein Castle and Linderhof Palace

Witness the fairy tale castles of Neuschwanstein and Linderhof, created by Germany’s 19th-century King Ludwig II, on a day trip from Munich.

Colosseum

The Colosseum was constructed between 70-80 AD and at its peak was estimated to hold 80,000 spectators.

Seoraksan National Park

Like the Yosemite of Korea, this majestic natural wonderland (Korea's first national park) has mountains, lakes, waterfalls, streams, and miles of hiking trails that allow you to explore them.

Miami Party Fishing Cruise
Miami Party Fishing Cruise

Get ready for a fun-filled day fishing the beautiful waters off of Florida's spectacular coastline. Party fishing cruises offer the angler a more economical means of enjoying a day of fishing offshore because the trip is shared with other people.

Santiago de Compostela Cathedral

The magnificent cathedral of Santiago (St. James) was built to house and honor the relics of the saint, and it has been the goal of pilgrims since the Middle Ages, the culmination of their completing the famed Camino de Santiago.

Budapest Danube River Sightseeing Night Cruise by Legenda City Cruises

View Budapest’s floodlit landmarks by boat on a Danube River evening cruise. Settle on the glass-enclosed vessel, and admire the cityscapes as you cruise by the UNESCO-listed riverbanks, glass in hand.