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croatia itinerary thoughts wanted

Hey, We are taking a sail croatia ebike tour leaving from Split from June 1 to June 8 which includes Bol, Hvar, Korcula and Mljet. We'll head to Dubrovnik from Split and fly out of there. I am looking for thoughts on the week before we start the cruise. Flying into Zagreb. I thought 1 night in Zagreb, 3 or 4 nights in Pula, 1 night in Plitvice lakes, 1 night in Split before we get on the boat. Any thoughts recommendations are welcome.

Thanks in advance, Brian

Posted by
41 posts

Sounds nice. Would add 2 days in Dubrovnik after.
Istria region can be toured from different locations during these 3/4 days.

Maybe a day tour to castles of Zagorje from Zagreb

Posted by
800 posts

Our recent trip included one night in Plitvice Lakes, and we regretted not making it two nights. Unfortunately for us, the weather was terrible on the day we had to spend in the park, so that was partially a factor. After speaking to some Croatians, we realized that two days would have been a better allotment of our time, even if the poor weather had not been a factor. I can recommend Zrinka House for your accommodations in Plitvice. The B&B is located in Grabovac, which is an easy drive to the park. Zrinka and her daughter, Barbara have a beautiful home with wonderful hospitality. Beautiful rooms, a snack and welcome drink upon arrival, amazing breakfasts, and they send guests into the park with a packed lunch the next day. Do be aware that the roads in that area are frequented by police with radar and traffic cameras. Barbara warned us to pay very close attention to speed limits. We did observe several vehicles pulled over.

Posted by
3811 posts

Add a night to Zagreb, Plitvice, and Split. On night stands are never good, too rushed. 4 nights in Pula is not necessary and it’s kinda out of the way. In fact, I would eliminate Pula and add another coastal town such as Zadar or Šibenik. If you are going to Pula for the Arena, it is a much smaller version of the colosseum in Rome. It is worth a stop if you are nearby, but I would save Istria for another trip, maybe combined with Slovenia. Or, as suggested, add the days to Dubrovnik.

Posted by
4 posts

He Barbara, Thanks for taking the time. Agreed that one night is rushed. We were considering Rovinj instead of Pula. Interesting thought on Zagreb. Initially we weren’t going there but the airfare was better there than Split or Pula. Thanks,

Posted by
4 posts

Hey, hit send too soon. We are retired so we can add days if needed. I don’t know if we are getting back to Istria anytime soon. How many days are needed for Zagreb, Istria, Plitvice and Split? 2 each?

Thanks again, Brian.

Posted by
869 posts

You’re going to have plenty of time enjoying the coast on the tour, so imo I’d drop Pula. It’s well out of the way too. Definitely add another night to Zagreb. Great, underrated city and deserves a full day. I don’t especially think you need two nights at Plitvice, but you could do worse things. Transportation to/from Plitvice is not a trivial thing, and some breathing room might be welcome. Then, add night(s) to Split. People seem very split on Split, but I really enjoyed it. It’s a great place to explore. There’s stuff to see, and it’s generally just a very active, fun and friendly city.

Posted by
27028 posts

Barbara has reported many of the large museums in Zagreb were still closed at the time of her most recent trip due to earthquake damage. I haven't checked their current status. Perhaps two nights there (at the beginning of your trip, so probably only one non-jetlagged day) might be sufficient for you. It wouldn't be for me, because it's a beautiful city with an atmospheric, bi-level Old Town and a bunch of small museums that, at last report, seemed to be open. In particular, check out the small but choice Museum of Naive Art and the very popular Museum of Broken Relationships.

I spent several nights in Rovinj and enjoyed Istria a lot. I took public buses to Porec and the little coastal village of Vrsar, then I took a once-a-week bus tour to inland Istria. The tour went to Motovun, Groznjan, Pazin (the capital) and a winery.

I think one night at Plitvice would be completely adequate for most visitors who arrive by mid-afternoon and can do part of their park exploration then, as others are leaving. However, I imagine you can fill a full day plus a few hours by going beyond the plotted-out walking routes. I'll just mention that as of 2015, the posted walking times seemed really conservative. I beat them easily, and I was dealing with massive crowds of fellow day-trippers throughout my visit; that definitely slowed me down. If you aren't at all tight for time, by all means allow an extra night at Plitvice. I love the place (have been there three times), and I would use that night elsewhere. Coastal Croatia is full of attractive towns.

Posted by
3811 posts

When we were in Zagreb last October, many museums were still closed. the ethnographic and museums in upper town are open. Naive Art and Broken Relationships. St. Mark’s Church, the one with the famous tiled roof, is open again. Renovations completed.

Posted by
15 posts

In my opinion there are nicer places to stay than Pula. On the Istrian Peninsula not too far from Pula is Rovinj which in my opinion is a nicer spot. If you do stay in Pula make your way out to the end of the Kamenjak Peninsula - natural park area with beautiful coastline and great swimming. Since you have the flexibility of 3 or 4 nights in Pula I would recommend only 1 day in that area and going on further down the coast and staying nearer to Split since you are departing from there for your bike tour. I recommend only one day in Pula because Pula's main attraction is the Roman Amphitheatre and some scattered roman ruins within the old town. It only takes 1/2 day to see these. Otherwise you have to consider the overall character of Pula which is a semi-industial port town (take a look at the aerial shot of its Wikipedia page). There is nothing bad about Pula, there are however, in my opinion, nicer places in Croatia to spend 3 to 4 nights. Since you are departing for your bike tour from Split the following are some nice towns to stay in near Split: Omis (30 minutes from Split), Makarska (1 hour from Split if no traffic going through Omis there is a bottleneck there often), Sibenik (1 hour from Split) or Zadar (1.5 hours from Split). If you stay in Omis you may not need to stay in Split and just do a day trip there for what you want to see there. Split is interesting but in my many trips to Croatia its not a place I would think about staying at rather it would be a day trip destination or place to catch the ferry. Your bike trip looks amazing. Bol is on the island of Brac and I hope your tour takes you to the Blaca Hermitage (Monastery), which is an old monastery set in a cliff. Have fun.