Our Guide to Zagreb, Plitvice, Split and Hvar
The small metropolis of Zagreb was made, it seems, for exploring the streets – discovering artsy back alleys where chic bars mingle with traditional bakeries and artists studios, drinking coffee in cool cafes, learning the local history in museums and tuning into the local pulse through the city’s galleries, theatres and concerts. As well as the obvious museums, the striking neo-gothic cathedral and other sites, the city has so very much to offer – amongst them are thriving live music venues, the city zoo, a 17th century convent and of course the iconic blue trams that veer from street to street.
On a culinary note, we simply must recommend the delicious Strukli – a relation of Austrian Strudel and Turkish Borek – made from rolled dough, cottage cheese and sour cream and filled with everything from spinach to salt and sugar – you should sample it at least once while in Zagreb or even make a day out of wandering the various sellers in the city. Nightlife is of course wonderful – to sample it at it’s most local head to the old street of Tkalciceva – which is Zagreb’s rowdy bar crawl locale – home to everything from pubs to stylish underground clubs and grappa bars. There are a variety of markets throughout the city too which are a great way to indulge in a little local colour – though one of our favourite is Britanski trg which during the week is a fruit and vegetable market before converting at the weekend to a bric-a-brac market which counts everything from jewellery and silverware to paintings and antique jewellery amongst its wares.
Plitvice Lakes National Park is the country’s biggest single natural attraction – with an eight kilometer string of sixteen lakes that are enshrouded by dense forested hills, and connected by the water rushing from the upper lakes via a breathtaking sequence of waterfalls. The lakes themselves are an enchanting escape – coloured a bewitching turquoise when seen from a distance and filled with fish, lizards and herons that silently stalk the shoreline of the northern part of the system. Inland from the lakes, wildlife lovers will revel in the fact that a motley collection of deer, bears, wolves and wild boar roam the woodland.
Split’s most striking feature is the stunning UNESCO listed Diocletian’s Palace, a Roman monument that stands at the centre of the city and is now filled with bars, restaurants and shops. The Palace was an inspiration for Robert Adam’s new style of neoclassical architecture – a simplification of rococo and baroque style – it has a good selection of bars on the ground floor and upper levels as well as a maze of underground temples and tunnels beneath it that add a layer of mystery to any visit there.
The city balances tradition and modernity with a fabulous zeal – there is an excellent collection of modern bars and restaurants along the Riva, incredible pieces of architecture including the towering Split Cathedral, the colourful Croatian National Theatre and of course the gorgeous harbour where one can stare out to the deep blues of the sea or even lay back on a private yacht soaking up the atmosphere.
The island of Hvar is one of our favourites in Dalmatia – you’ll find lush vineyards and pine topped hills, medieval streets and modern bars and restaurants that contribute to what is one of Croatia’s most talked about nightlife spots. The old town is encircled by a 13th century wall, it’s traffic-free, adorned with Gothic palaces and lined with marble streets, and at the centre is St. Stephen’s Square – the best al fresco dining spot on the island. It is simply remarkable.
As well as nightlife, impeccable beaches and wonderful food, the island has a variety of secrets should you wish to uncover them – from abandoned villages and rugged cycle paths that take in the best views, to antique architecture and numerous coves and inlets that allow for privacy and heaven-like perfection away from the crowds.
- Return flights from London – Regional departures available
- Bed and breakfast accommodation in 4 or 5 star hotels in Zagreb, Plitvice, Split and Hvar
- Car hire or transfers between destinations
- Your holiday is ATOL protected for your peace of mind
- Access to our concierge service
Why book with Unforgettable Croatia
- We are specialists in luxury travel to Croatia with the largest coverage of 4 and 5 star hotels, resorts and cruises
- Unrivalled customer service and extensive knowledge of the region, help us to craft unique and tailor made tours and Croatia multi centre holidays
- Your holiday in Croatia is covered by our ATOL cover providing you 100% financial protection and peace of mind for your trip
- Our concierge team provide not only 24/7 support throughout the booking process and the trip, but also some little touches to show we care from the minute you get in touch to your return to work with the holiday blues