Croatia's Istrian Riviera & Lake Bled
7 nights. May 2023 - October 2023. From £897.00.
WHERE STORIES BEGIN - SAVE UP TO 15% ON ALL 2023/24 AIR HOLIDAYS - BOOK BY 28 FEBRUARY
Discover the treasures beside the blue Adriatic - Roman glories, stunning scenery and one of Europe’s most beautiful lakes. Spend a week in a beautifully appointed shore-side hotel in the genteel, colourful resort of Lovran - a favourite destination of the Viennese elite during the Habsburg Empire, and now one of Croatia’s premier holiday havens - and join three marvellous included excursions. You’ll enjoy the delights of the Istrian Riviera, journey into beautiful Slovenia to the beautiful shores of Lake Bled and spend a wonderful day in the spectacular surroundings of Croatia's glorious Plitvice National Park.
What's IncludedSeven nights' dinner, bed and breakfast accommodation at the four-star Hotel Excelsior, Lovran
Visits to Pula, Rovinj and Lim Fjord on a tour of the Istrian Peninsula
Excursions to Lake Bled in Slovenia and to Plitvice National Park in Croatia
Return flights to Venice or Pula
Comfortable, air-conditioned coach travel and transfers throughout
The services of a friendly, experienced tour manager
Holiday HighlightsVisit the exquisite, emerald-green Lake Bled, Slovenia’s most charming attraction
Discover Pula's stunning Roman amphitheatre
Witness the waterfalls and breathtaking scenery in Plitvice National Park
Join an optional Krk and Cres islands excursion
Enjoy a week in Lovran, the former retreat of the Viennese elite
Seek out the remarkable Lim Fjord, the one-time hideaway of Captain Morgan
Explore the pretty fishing port of Rovinj
Partake in an optional Postojna Caves and Predjama Castle tour
PLEASE NOTE: Price is per person and based on two people sharing a twin/double room. Single room supplements and upgrades are not included.
Day 1Arrive in Venice or Pula, and transfer to your hotel in Lovran, on the Kvarner Gulf, one of the most sun-kissed corners of the Adriatic Sea. If transferring from Italy, you'll pass briefly into Slovenia then into Croatia on the way to your hotel.
Day 2Today is free to enjoy the facilities and explore the delights of Lovran. A popular destination for the nobility of the Austro-Hungarian Empire, Lovran has a rich history dating back to the Roman era and is the perfect destination for peace and tranquillity. Sit and relax with a drink in St George’s square and people-watch.
Day 3On the first of our included tours you'll see some of the beauty of the Istrian peninsula in the company of our friendly tour manager. Highlights will include bustling Pula, the provincial capital famed for its vast Roman amphitheatre, the immense arches of which tower over the city’s port and ancient centre. You’ll also discover remarkable Lim Fjord, a wooded gash in the coastline that, according to local legend, once served as a hiding place for Welsh pirate (and later governor of Jamaica) Captain Henry Morgan. You’ll visit stunning Rovinj, which rises Venice-like out of the water, its narrow streets and pastel-painted buildings leading ever upwards to the Baroque church of St Euphemia. Make the climb to enjoy the tremendous view, before returning to the harbourfront below, perhaps to enjoy a well-deserved ice-cream.
Day 4Today’s long but memorable excursion takes you north through scenic countryside into Slovenia, and past the country’s capital Ljubljana, to beautiful Lake Bled. Ringed by forested hills and looking out across the usually still waters to an island crowned by a Baroque church, Bled itself is a wonderful resort town surrounded by nature's glories. Enjoy the views of Bled Castle, which overlooks the town from a lofty perch on the opposite shore, before spending time enjoying the lakeside resort. Stop for lunch (payable locally), or perhaps take gondola-like pletna across to the island (payable locally). The energetic can even choose to row themselves! You’ll return to Lovran this evening in time for dinner.
Day 5Rest and relax in and around your hotel, today, or join our optional boat tour to explore two contrasting islands lying off the beautiful Croatian coast. Board your vessel and head out into the Kvarner Gulf. Your first stop will be Krk (pronounced "Kirk") a former Roman and Venetian outpost, and the largest island in the Gulf (and indeed the entire Adriatic). Across a narrow strait, Cres ("Tsress") is slightly smaller and less inhabited than its neighbour. Explore the historic fishing port of Beli, charmingly set on a hilltop overlooking its picturesque harbour. During the day, you'll also have the chance to enjoy a traditional Croatian 'fish picnic' prepared by the crew of your boat.
Day 6The last of our included excursions takes you inland to Plitvice - justifiably Croatia’s most celebrated and most visited natural attraction. Here, 16 bodies of water are surrounded by breathtaking scenery, and linked by a series of rushing waterfalls and rapids that tumble down the ancient, time-weathered terraces. After a drive through the beautiful scenery of Croatia’s interior, you’ll spend time exploring the park on foot before returning to Lovran this evening.
Day 7Spend a final day in Lovran or join our final tour and cross the border into Slovenia once again, heading to the rolling Karst region, which has lent its name to anywhere in the world where underground streams and caves are found. Today, you’ll visit the giant chasm at Postojna to travel two miles underground by train then walk with a personal audio-guide through a wonderfully illuminated netherworld of stalactites and stalagmites where the strange ‘human fish’ – a tiny amphibian – lives out its sightless life. After a fascinating visit, you’ll journey to Predjama Castle, a remarkable Renaissance castle that clings to a sheer cliff-face at the mouth of another of the region's immense caves, its upper floor stairwells carved from the bedrock. Return to Lovran to enjoy dinner and the last evening of your holiday.
Day 8Transfer to the airport to check in for your flight home, after a wonderful stay in this delightful corner of the world. Back to top
Hotel transfer timesThe transfer time from the airport to your hotel is approximately three hours from Venice and Treviso airports and one hour 20 minutes from Pula airport.
Itinerary changesOccasionally, for operational reasons, we may have to change the order of the excursions on your holiday. The final day-by-day itinerary will be confirmed on your Final Travel Documents, which you will receive approximately three weeks prior to your departure.
Combining hotel transfersWe sometimes need to combine transfers to and from your hotel. We always try to keep any wait to a minimum, but you may be asked to wait at the airport for up to an hour, while other incoming flights arrive, before the transfer to your hotel. Similarly, we may need to transfer you back to the airport up to three hours before your flight home departs.
Special requirementsIf you have notified us of any special requirements, please check that they have been noted and acknowledged. This is especially important with any dietary needs you may have.
Disabled accessThe majority of our tours involve a certain amount of walking, including a short walk from the coach stop to the town, attraction or venue you're visiting. If you are bringing a wheelchair, please let us know at the time of booking so that appropriate arrangements can be made.
Activity levelsDue to the nature of the landscapes explored (national parks, lakes and countryside), this holiday is not recommended for customers with walking difficulties.
Plitvice National Park and Lake BledThe journey from your hotel to Plitvice National Park and Lake Bled will take approximately three hours.
Foreign Office Travel AdviceVisit www.gov.uk/foreign-travel-advice to find out the latest Foreign And Commonwealth Office travel advice for your holiday destination, as well as information about passports and visas.
Airport development feesAn Airport Development Fee has been introduced at a few UK Airports. You will be required to pay this charge at the following airports prior to checking in for your flight: Blackpool, Newquay and Norwich. The amount varies from airport to airport, but it is generally between £5 and £10 per person. Please visit the airport's website for further information.
Travelling to EuropeRules may have changed since you last travelled to European Union countries and Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. The following are useful guidelines which will help you prepare for your next adventure. Note that these new rules do NOT apply when travelling within the United Kingdom or to the Channel Islands, the Isle of Man or the Republic of Ireland. You do require government issued ID when travelling by air though. Names - It is very important that all passenger names are exactly as per your passport although we do not require middle names. Passport - Your passport must meet two requirements to travel to an EU country and to Switzerland, Norway, Iceland and Liechtenstein. It must be: Less than 10 years old on the day you return home (please check the "date of issue") and valid for at least 3 months after the day you return home (please check the "expiry date"). These rules do not apply to travel to Ireland where you can continue to use your passport as long as it’s valid for the length of your stay. Visa - If you’re a tourist, you do not need a visa for short trips to most EU countries, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland. You’ll be able to stay for up to 90 days in any rolling 180-day period. Different rules will apply to Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus and Romania; if you visit these countries, visits to other EU countries will not count towards the 90-day total. Travel to Ireland will not change and stays there will not count towards the 90-day total. European Travel Information & Authorisation System (ETIAS) - Commencing in 2023, all citizens of the United Kingdom will require a ETIAS electronic form completed prior to their arrival into the EU and Schengen member countries. The cost for this travel authorisation will be €7.00 per person with exceptions for under 18’s and over 70’s. The latest information and further details can be found at www.etias.com. Border Control - At border control, you may need to show proof of your return journey - your travel documentation issued by us will be sufficient for this. You will also need to use separate lanes from EU, EEA and Swiss citizens if manual checks are required. Healthcare Cover - You should always get appropriate travel insurance with healthcare cover before you go abroad which covers pre-existing conditions. You should understand the terms and conditions of your travel insurance and be happy with its cover for healthcare and travel disruption. Newmarket sell a comprehensive travel insurance policy. Ask our travel consultants for more information. You should also apply for a UK Global Heath Insurance Card (GHIC) which lets you get urgent state healthcare in Europe at a reduced cost or sometimes for free. Note GHIC is only valid in EU countries and not in Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland.
Terms and conditionsTerms and Conditions: 15% discount applies to specific holidays and tours only. All other holidays and tours will have a 10% discount applied. The Where Stories Begin offer applies to new bookings only booked between 26 December 2022 and 28 February 2023 inclusive. The Offer does not apply to holidays with late availability pricing and excludes, Ocean Cruise, River Cruise, Andre Rieu events, Lapland and Wimbledon. This offer cannot be combined or used in conjunction with any other discount, promotion or concession. When booking a holiday as described above, prices shown will automatically have the 15% or 10% applied. The discount applies to your final holiday price (excluding holiday insurance) at the time of booking. The Offer is subject to availability and may be withdrawn at any time. Back to top