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Itinerary Advice: Croatia, Slovenia, Bosnia

I am planning a trip to the Adriatic in May of next year. I am flying into Zagreb, arriving on May 4, and flying out of Dubrovnik on May 25. I have a travel partner (my sister) who is coming with me, but she is only joining me for the first half, and she is flying out of Sarajevo on May 14, so those are the dates I'm working around, and those are firm. Here's the current plan Zagreb (2 nights, then get rental car) Ljubljana (3 nights) Rovinj (3 nights) Plitvice (1 night) Sarajevo (3 nights) Mostar (1 night) Trogir (1 night, then drive to Split and drop off rental car before ferry) Hvar (2 nights) Korcula (2 nights)
Dubrovnik (3 nights, with a day trip to Kotor) And here are my questions Should we cut Ljubljana to 2 nights and do the third night in Kobarid so we have more time to spend in the Julian Alps without rushing back to Ljubljana? Should we cut Rovinj to 2 nights? That would give my sister a full day in Sarajevo. And then I'm thinking of replacing Trogir with two nights in Split. Any other suggestions? I know it's a lot of moving around and sleeping in a lot of different places, but I don't have any idea what, if anything, to eliminate. Thanks for any ideas and suggestions!

Posted by
6697 posts

What's your reasoning in replacing Trogir for Split? They are very close to each other but Trogir will have cheaper accommodations and a quieter atmosphere. If you're thinking of Split because you want to jump right off on the Hvar ferry afterward, then I think you're on target. Dubrovnik is not that big - 2 nights should be fine. I'd put the extra night to Mostar (you can do nice sidetrips with 2 nights or spend it leisurely in Mostar)

Posted by
1419 posts

My reasoning for maybe replacing Trogir for Split is partly what you said. Also, I can easily take a day trip from Split to Trogir. And some people I know who were there recently said more time in Split would be good. And since I am returning the rental car in Split, I can return it two days earlier. The reason for 3 nights in Dubrovnik is that I don't arrive there from Korcula until later in the day, and my flight out is at 6:30 a.m. That's only two full days in Dubrovnik, and one of them will be the all-day excursion to Kotor. I am intrigued by your idea of adding a night in Mostar rather than Split. I had not considered that, but I will give it some thought. Thanks you for your feedback!

Posted by
2980 posts

We're just back from a similar trip. Based on our experience here are some suggestions: * Zagreb - 2 nights is good. We really liked staying at the Astoria Hotel (Best Western) * Ljubljana is one of our favorite cities so I'd keep 3 nights there (Slamic B & B worked great for us.) * Rovinj - maybe it was the rainy weather, but I wasn't crazy about Rovinj. 2 nights there would be enough for me (we stayed 3.)
* Plitvice - 1 night is good. We stayed at Tina House about 9 km. from one of the park entrances. * Sarajevo - we did not go there so I can't comment on the amount of time. * Mostar - we stayed 2 nights - that was enough time. Villa Fortuna was a great place to stay. * For the last part, I'd pick either Hvar or Kortula for 2 nights. Then add a night to Split for a total of 3. Do an easy day trip to Trogir from Split. We went to Korcula on a previous trip but I liked Hvar a little better. We had a great apartment in Hvar at Apartments Rosso. * We did not go to Dubrovnik on this trip but it's good for 3 nights if you take the day trip to Kotor. If you delete a night from Rovinj you still have a day or two extra to leave as flex - decide when you're there what's the use of the extra day(s). We could easily have spent 4 nights in Ljubljana. Hoping you're planning to rent a car - it gives you more flexibility. A GPS is essential. You'll have a great time!

Posted by
4637 posts

I just returned from there and visited all destination you mentioned with the exception of Trogir and Sarajevo. Rovinj is beautiful but small, 1 night is more than enough. If there is already swimming weather I would just stop in Hvar for several hours and continue to Korcula Island. Ferry usually comes to Vela Luka and then by bus to the town of Korcula. One of rare sandy beaches in the Adriatics is in nearby Lombarda. There is a good connection by bus. I would not cut nights in Ljubljana but in Rovinj and add Kobarid. There were big battles of World War I in the surrounding mountains and they have an interesting museum in Kobarid.

Posted by
82 posts

HI Lane - Just got back from an 18 day trip to Croatia, Montenegro, Bosnia, and Slovenia. Here are my thoughts: My favorite city was Rovinj. We used the city as a base and then drove to nearby hill towns. I liked Rovinj but the hill towns weren't as nice as I was expecting. I'd take a night from Rovinj and just stay in the city. When you'rre in Ljubljana go to Lake Bled on a day trip. It's maybe 90 minutes away. Make sure you go there on a nice day though. We stayed 2 nights in Lake Bled but didn't have nice weather at all. It really took away from the beauty of the lake. I'd add 1 night in Zagreb....not sure when you get in but you'll probably only have the 1 day to see Zagreb. I liked Zagreb just as much as Ljubljana. I drove to Kotor and stayed there 1 night. You might think about driving to Kotor before going to Dubrovnik and stay 1 night. Take a night from Dubrovnik. I did stay in Split and liked it very much (didn't go to Trogir).....however you'll be seeing quite a few ancient towns....I'd give your sister a full day in Sarajevo. Places I slept overnight in: Dubrovnik, Kotor, Split, Lake Plitvice, Rovinj, Lake Bled, Ljubljana, and Zagreb. Overall I think you've got a good schedule. The driving time in between isn't too much. Jerry

Posted by
1419 posts

Many thanks to you, Sharon, Ilja, and Jerry. Lots to consider! I'm learning a few things as I plan this trip: (1) everyone has their favorite places in this region; (2) every place in this region is someone's favorite; (3) there's no bad itinerary wherever I go, I'll have a great time; so (4) I shouldn't stress about it too much! Cheers!

Posted by
2980 posts

You're absolutely correct Lane! That's the spirit! I obsessed over our itinerary and it all worked out - we had a fabulous time! I have learned to build in some free days here and there so that if we find a place that we like a lot we can stay longer or if we learn about an interesting destination from other travelers we have the flexibility to go there. You really can't go wrong!