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HomeGardens of Slovenia & Croatia with Croatian Islands Cruise

Scents & Gardens of Slovenia & Croatia with Croatian Islands Cruise

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Botanical discovery of Slovenia and Croatia.

Trek through the stunning Plitvice Lakes National Park, when in Croatia with Botanica World Discoveries.

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16 Days including a 7-night exclusive Small Ship cruise. Discover the pristine natural beauty of Slovenia and Croatia through this in depth journey discovering both natural and created gardens before boarding your boutique Small Ship cruise along the Dalmatian coast. View complete itinerary

Trip code: BTSC16
Duration: 16 days
Journey: Zagreb to Kotor or Dubrovnik
Meals included: 28

Itinerary

Day 1. Arrive Zagreb

Arrive Zagreb and transfer to your hotel before a welcome dinner tonight.
Stay: Two Nights, Zagreb, Hotel Sheraton or similar
  • Daily Meals Included:
  • • Dinner

Day 2. Zagreb Botanical Gardens and Private Garden Visit

Today, see the Gothic cathedral, Dolac market and upper and lower town sites on your guided tour of Zagreb. Time stands still in this beautiful place known for its arcades made by Herman Bole, the famous Austrian architect who envisioned most of downtown Zagreb at the end of 19th century. Afterwards, visit the Zagreb Botanical gardens, home to over 10,000 plant species. In the afternoon, we will be welcomed into a private garden by the home's owner.
  • Daily Meals Included:
  • • Breakfast

Day 3. Varazdin

This morning we depart Zagreb and stop at a rural private estate and garden owned by a couple who dedicate their lives to building an organic environment, and who regularly feature at local gardening shows. Here we will learn about their craft and engage in a workshop followed by a home-cooked lunch using fresh ingredients. This afternoon we continue to the town of Varazdin. Once the Croatian capital, the baroque centre of Varazdin is surrounded by palaces from the 18th century. A town tour will take us behind closed doors of some of the private courtyards preparing to feature in the Courtyard Festival held once a year.
Stay: Varazdin, Park Boutique Hotel
  • Daily Meals Included:
  • • Breakfast
  • • Lunch

Day 4. Varazdin, Mozirski Gaj, Logarska Valley

Today we visit a family run estate renowned for their apple juice and wine production. Surrounded by vineyards and orchards, we will enjoy a tasting here. Later we continue to Mozirski Gaj which is known as one of the most beautiful parks in this part of Europe. Also known as the Slovenian Gardeners' Park, from April to the end of September millions of blossoms can be seen on the carefully well-kept flowerbeds. In summer, tens of thousands of annuals flourish here. In the afternoon we enjoy a scenic drive to Logarska Valley where we check-in to our hotel overlooking the pristine grounds.
Stay: Two Nights, Logarska Valley, Plesnik Hotel or similar
  • Daily Meals Included:
  • • Breakfast
  • • Dinner

Day 5. Logarska Valley

This morning we will visit Rinka Waterfall, just a short drive from our hotel. Standing 105 metres tall, you have a unique opportunity to walk to the base of the fall, or simply enjoy a coffee in a unique cliff-side cafe overlooking the falls. This evening enjoy a special picnic dinner in the natural setting.
  • Daily Meals Included:
  • • Breakfast
  • • Dinner

Day 6. Volcji Potok Arboretum

This morning we visit Volcji Potok arboretum. This is the most visited horticultural facility in Slovenia. Later we travel to Ljubljana and check into our hotel with a rooftop terrace overlooking the city of Ljubljana. This afternoon a city tour of Ljubljana will take us to Ljubljana Castle via a funicular ride, before joining a river cruise through this charming city.
Stay: Three Nights, Ljubljana, Intercontinental Hotel or similar
  • Daily Meals Included:
  • • Breakfast

Day 7. Lake Bohinj, Lake Bled

From Ljubljana we travel to Lake Bohinj, the largest permanent lake in Slovenia. To get the best view of the lake, we will take the cable car 1,500m above sea level to Vogel Mountain. Later travel to Lake Bled and visit Bled Castle before returning to Ljubljana.
  • Daily Meals Included:
  • • Breakfast
  • • Dinner

Day 8. Sežana Botanical Garden, Ferraris Garden

Today visit the Botanical Garden of Sežana. This garden of joy, peace and exploration comprises 150-year-old cedars, flowerbeds, blooming pergolas and a palmarium all of which mirror those at the Schönbrunn greenhouse in Vienna. We will also visit a small garden that received a top-rating and a gold medal in the category of small gardens at the horticultural exhibition at Hampton Court Flower Show in 2009. The garden is designed with traditional arts and crafts materials, and plants that are typical of the karst landscape. Its architectural structure represents the respectful, environmentally-friendly lifestyle of the people in this rural area. We will enjoy lunch in a hilltop village before exploring Ferrari's Garden - a wonderful garden created during the 1920s composed of several terraces, which are influenced by the architectural style of the buildings above in the fortified hilltop village.
  • Daily Meals Included:
  • • Breakfast
  • • Lunch

Day 9. Opatija and Embark Ship

On our way to Opatija this morning, we travel to Histria Aromatica, a lifetime project of enthusiasm and love for Mediterranean plant life. Learn about the park and the vision behind it with a short visit to the ethno-botanical museum where you will taste local produce while marvelling at surrounding views including the Brijuni archipelago. Perhaps visit the workshop or one of the many gardens on site. Let your nose guide you to the aromatic herb plantation which includes lavender, rosemary, immortelle, sage, calendula, chamomile, mint and pyrethrum.Following lunch, continue to Opatija where you will embark the MS Princess Eleganza.
Stay: Seven Nights, MS Princess Eleganza
  • Daily Meals Included:
  • • Breakfast
  • • Dinner

Day 10. Plitvice Lakes National Park

Over breakfast sail to Senj and arrive in the late morning. Disembark for your excursion to the Plitvice Lakes National Park. This is an area of extraordinary natural beauty with 16 lakes interconnected by a series of waterfalls set within forested hills. There are a number of paths along the wooden walkways that surround the lakes that you can explore this afternoon to enjoy the stunning views. Return to the ship for dinner as we moor overnight.
  • Daily Meals Included:
  • • Breakfast
  • • Dinner

Day 11. Å ibenik Garden Visit

Sit back, relax and enjoy the beautiful Mediterranean waters. Arrive in Å ibenik in the afternoon for a visit of a local Mediterranean garden. This evening take a tour of the historic centre of Å ibenik then choose to dine in one of the many restaurants ashore.
  • Daily Meals Included:
  • • Breakfast

Day 12. Split

Arrive in Split during the afternoon in time for a short guided walk through this fascinating city. See the fourth-century Palace of Diocletian, built by the emperor for his retirement, the cathedral and walk through the Old Town. This evening, choose to dine in one of the many restaurants on the Riva promenade as the ship moors overnight.
  • Daily Meals Included:
  • • Breakfast
  • • Lunch

Day 13. Hvar and Korcula

Enjoy a free morning on Hvar exploring the old town, starting in the main square which is the largest piazza in Dalmatia, the cathedral and the palatial quarter of Grad and the more humble residential area of Burg. Rejoin the Princess Eleganza to cruise to Korcula. Said to be the birthplace of Marco Polo, Korcula boasts crooked medieval streets, and elegant squares. Tonight dine independently in one of the many welcoming local restaurants.
  • Daily Meals Included:
  • • Breakfast
  • • Lunch

Day 14. Dubrovnik and Trsteno Arboretum

Arrive in Dubrovnik this afternoon and enjoy a guided walk through the breathtaking city. Its many historic and cultural treasures have earned it the designation as a World Heritage-listed site. See the Rectors Palace, the Romanesque-Gothic Dominican and Franciscan monasteries, and the Sponza Palace or alternatively travel to Trsteno Arboretum the Renaissance-period summer residence of Gueti-Gozze family, with its garden which has been cultivated since the 15th century.
  • Daily Meals Included:
  • • Breakfast
  • • Lunch
  • • Dinner

Day 15. Montenegro

Sail to Kotor today. Enjoy a tour of the city of Kotor including the Cathedral of Saint Tryphon in the old town, and see the ancient walls which stretch for 4.5 kilometres directly above the city. Meet later for a Farewell Dinner, after which you can enjoy a final evening on board with your fellow travellers.
  • Daily Meals Included:
  • • Breakfast
  • • Dinner

Day 16. Disembark Ship and Depart Kotor or Dubrovnik

Disembark this morning after breakfast and be transferred to either Kotor's Tivat airport or Dubrovnik airport for your onward flight.
  • Daily Meals Included:
  • • Breakfast

Trip Highlights

  • Learn about the region’s history from the Tour Manager and Cruise Director
  • Visit a Hampton Court award winning garden in Slovenia
  • Enjoy private garden visits
  • Explore the Slovenian Gardener’s Park, Mozirski Gaj
  • Learn about organic gardening at a private estate in Croatia and enjoy a local produce lunch
  • Marvel at the Austro-Hungarian architecture of this region
  • Uncover the history of the walled city of Dubrovnik
  • Explore the pristine islands of Croatia
  • Cruise into Kotor, Montenegro

Map

Included Experiences

  • Services of a Tour/Cruise Director
  • Airport transfers on first and last day, port taxes, tipping and porterage
  • 28 Meals - 15 Breakfasts, 5 Lunches and 8 Dinners
  • 7 nights aboard the MS Princess Eleganza cruising the Dalmatian Coast
  • Stay in centrally located 4-5 star hotels

Ship Floor and Deck Plan

Princess Eleganza  

Discover Croatia and the Adriatic Coast aboard this private boutique yacht with just 30 guests, providing an intimate coastal cruising experience up close to the islands.

Please note: this small ship is cosy, comfortable and perfect for enjoying the beautiful scenery and islands of the Dalmatian Coast, but not as luxurious as some of our other ships.

See the deck plans for Princess Eleganza here

Botanical Guide

Botanical Guide - Anthea Guthrie

  • Anthea Guthrie turned her hobby into a career. She entered her first show garden for the Royal Horticultural Society in 2003, and has since achieved numerous accolades, including two medals at the Chelsea Flower Show and Gold for Botanica at Hampton Court Flower Show in 2015. Athena happily shares her extensive English horticultural knowledge.

Additional Information

Fitness Level

  • Medium – Involves walking on uneven surfaces for more than one hour, multiple two-night stays in one location with potential for unexpected changes to itineraries. A good degree of mobility is required.

Trip Notes

  • Itinerary and inclusions are subject to change
  • Group size - 30 guests to 36 guests
  • This tour can be combined with: Singapore Garden Festival & Orchids (BTSGF9). Savings apply. Enquire for details
  • Prices are for land/cruise only. Flights not included

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