Nature Travel Specialists

custom tours & travel, wildlife tours, adventure and special interest travel to selected destinations around the world


Cruising the Cyclades & Adriatic Coast


star clipper

July 11 to July 22


with an optional private pre-cruise exploration in Athens available


From the days of ancient Phonecia through the Crusades and Ottoman Empire to modern day this region has attracted people form far away for its wealth, beauty and mystique. There is no better way to explore the ancient cities and towns, byways, small villages, grapevine and olive tree covered hillsides, Byzantine churches, sparkling blue water and shining sun than aboard a sailing vessel equipped with all of today’s modern comforts. In company with your small group of friends, led by inveterate traveler Judy Brzoska, you will explore the coast and inland of three countries – Greece, Montenegro and Croatia, finishing in a fourth, Italy, at the world’s most romantic city, Venice. This is a small ship cruise not to be missed, offering exceptional sights, excellent food and wonderful company. In addition to the cruise itself Judy invites you to join her and David for three days of exploring Athens and nearby areas with a private guide. Judy has arranged with an exceptional guide to visit both the well and lesser known Athenian treasures, and we know that this will be three days of very special discoveries.

In addition to description of each port of call, shore excursions organized by the ship are described. It is also possible to explore on your own, or with our group, led by Judy.


Day 1 – Friday, July 10: Home/Gateway City/ Athens
Although we board the Star Clipper late afternoon, we strongly recommend arriving in Athens the day prior to sailing to ensure that any airline delays do not mean missing your boat. We will be happy to arrange a hotel for you for this night. Even better, leave July 7 or 8 and join Judy and Dave exploring Athens with their private guide.

Day 2 – Saturday, July 11: Athens / Board the Star Clipper
Walking in the shadow of the Acropolis in the Agora, you can almost hear the voices of Plato, Socrates and Aristotle arguing about who was the greatest philosopher. In the soaring, subtly curved Doric columns of the Parthenon you see the masterful hand of Pericles, Athens' greatest general and builder. And in the ethereally graceful bodies of the Karyatids suppopearthenon athensrting the porch of the Erectheum, you behold the beauty of the immortals. Ancient Athens, the birthplace of democracy and epicenter of western civilization, is a city for all eternity. The earliest Athenians were of Ionian stock, arriving on the peninsula in about 2000 BC. Of the early rulers little is known except that they were kings. By the 7th century BC they had been superseded by Eupatrids, the aristocracy of the eleven noble families of Attica. The next development from the aristocratic rule came with Solon,karyatids athens the "Father of Democracy", who initiated the idea of rule by the people and created assemblies of ordinary citizens. Following Solon’s democracy came the age of the Tyrants, a system of rule largely established by Peisistratus in about 546 BC. The idea was to remove much of the power of te nobles and to favor merchants, farmers, and the ordinary people. Athens, particularly the Acropolis, became one of the chief centers of religion in Greece, and by 600 BC there were many temples, fragments of which are in the Acropolis Museum. The year 450 BC saw the beginning of Pericles and his "Golden Age". In the 1830s, the Greek architect Cleanthes and the German Schaubert planned the new city around Otto’s austere Palace. From a small proximity above the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, the Palace dominates Syntagma Square (Constitution Square). From Syntagma Square, Amalia Avenue leads past the National Garden and the Zappion Park to Hadrian’s Arch. Behind the park, the Stadium, built on a natural ravine for the first modern Olympic Games held in 1896, occupies the same site used in ancient times. The mountainous region of Attica and Athens, though barren and infertile, has a superb climate.

This evening board the Star Clipper to begin your voyage of discovery.

Day 3 – Sunday, July 12: Mykonos, Greece
One of the most cosmopolitan of all the Greek Islands and quite justifiably attracting visitors from all over the world, Mykonos is a contrast of rocky hills and beautiful beaches. Hora, the capital, spreads around a colorful harbor in which fishing boats nestle side by side with luxury yachts. The brilliant white cubic houses with white-washed balcmykonosonies built close together with little shops and tiny churches, make up the backstreets of the town. The harbor is overlooked by a variety of tavernas, and is a popular meeting place as the sun goes down, turning the brilliant whites to beautiful shades of pinks and reds. After only a moment’s glance, it is easy to understand the popularity of Mykonos. Cafes and colorful fishing boats line the charming small harbor that acts amykonos evenings a scenic façade for the maze of narrow cobblestone streets that lie behind. The streets are lined with picturesque whitewashed houses, local handicraft stores, boutiques, waterfront cafes and the mascot of the island, the pelican. Don’t be surprised if you encounter one of them wandering the town with you. Two of the best places to visit are Little Venice, located on the southwestern side of town and filled with waterfront cafes and spectacular views of the sunset, and the famous Windmill’s (adjacent to Little Venice, on Kato Myli Hill), one of the landmarks of Mykonos. As you continue to explore this captivating island, you will not have to venture far to find one of its many beautiful beaches or coves with azure blue water lapping up on the shore. The special allure of the island is sure to leave you looking forward to your next trip to Mykonos.

There are no organized shore excursions today, as Mykonos is easy to explore on your own.

Day 4 – Monday, July 13: Santorini, Greece
The island of Santorini is perhaps the most breathtaking of all the Greek Islands. Around 1500 BC, a volcanic eruption destroyed the center of the island, leaving a crescent shaped rim of cliffs around a hasantorinirbor formed in the vosantorini eveninglcano's caldera. Upon arriving at Santorini the dramatic view of vertical cliffs of gray lava and white pumice rises nearly 1,000 feet above the sea greets you. The island is part of the remains of the ancient island destroyed in the catastrophic volcano eruption from around 1350 BC. The explosion is said to have altered the course of history in the ancient world. What remains has become one of the most famous of the Greek Isles because of its dramatic beauty. Typical of the whitewashed and pastel Cycladic style, the town of Thira, along the rim of the volcano, is nothing short of breathtaking. The cafes and hotels built on the hill overlooking the harbor offer one of the most spectacular views in the world. The intrigues of this special island begin when you take a cable car up to the town from the harbor and observe the awesome creation of nature. The more adventurous can take a donkey ride to the top of the mountain; a special treat in itself. The striking beauty of Santorini is something every visitor long remembers.

Shore Excusions
Flavors of Santorin
By air-conditioned motorcoach, Min 25 / Max 48 /unlimited. 4 hours 30 min. Euros 50

Disembark and by local caiques enjoy a unique journey in the “caldera” towards Athinios harbour. Board the awaiting buses and enjoy a scenic ascent via the colorful rocky sides of the caldera, affording a spectacular panorama of the island. At the highest peak on the island, an altitude of 2.000 feet, you will glimpse the monastery of Profitis lias and the breathtaking view of the entire island will captivate you. After this short stop, we continue into the vineyards of Antoniou. You will be guided around and have the opportunity of tasting wines from the region. The countryside to Fira is adorned with vineyards in the typical ‘’nest’’ form. Enjoy a pleasant drive through the lovely traditional villages of the stunning island towards Oia located on the northern side. Upon arrival in Oia, your guide will take you on a sightseeing walk in the village. Have the opportunity of entering artists’ workshops, meeting and talking with them. See the architecture and typical Santorinian style of houses and churches. Revive over a cup of coffee or juice at a place overlooking the volcano at your own cost. Buses will wait for you at the coach park. After a short journey of 20 minutes, finds us at Fira, the attractive capital town. Enjoy a leisurely stroll to the town center where you have time at your disposal to browse through the shops and boutiques and to sip coffee in one of the cafes affording a spectacular view of the volcano. Take the cable car down at your convenience to the small harbor of Scala from where local tenders will take you back to the ship.
NOTE: There is some uphill walking involved during this tour; exploration of Oia is on foot and some of the walking involves cobblestone surfaces and steps. This tour is not recommended for passengers with walking difficulties.

Volcano Hiking
By boat and by foot. Min 20/Max 50. 3 hours. Euros 44

The local caique will take you from ship's side on a boat trip to Nea Kameni. You will sail along the volcanic shores with the peculiarly shaped formations. The black volcanic rocks and the white pumice offer beautiful views for you to admire. After disembarking the caique, an uphill walk will take you to the crater of the still active volcano. During your walk up the ascending path you will have the opportunity to observe the lava fragments and the volcanic rock formations. Once you have reached the crater you will have time to relax and enjoy the view of Santorini island and the amazing cliff of Caldera. After your descent back to the caique you will sail towards the thermal springs of Palea Kameni. The boat will stop in the dark relaxing experience of swimming in the warm waters. From here your caique will take you back to the ship.
NOTE: There is uphill strenuous walking (approx 1 km on the ground) involved during the visit of the volcanic islet. Comfortable walking or sport shoes are needed. There is no shade on the volcano and you should wear appropriate sun protection and comfortable shoes. In case of bad weather conditions the tour could be cancelled. This tour is not recommended for guests who suffer from seasickness and those with mobility problems. To do this excursion you need to be in top form physically and a good swimmer. Don't forget to bring your swimsuit, sunscreen and a towel. Due to high sulfur levels light colored bathing suites may become discolored. The climb is 30 minutes up and 20 down. The transfer to the volcano port is only 15 minutes; the transfer to the hot spring is 20 minutes and then 25 back to the ship

ythionDay 5 – Tuesday, July 14: Yithion, Greece
The ancient port and naval base of Sparta, Yithion is reputed to be the site where Paris and Helen of Troy fled to Egypt. The town is an ideal base from which to explore the district and the Caves of Diros. Yithion guards the road to Mystra, the secret treasure of Greece, where centuries old Byzantine frescoes are almost perfectly intact. Exquisite patterns cover every inch of Mystra’s 14thC churches.

Shore Excusions
By air-conditioned motorcoach. Min. 25/ Max. unlimited. 4 hours 30 min. Euros 57
From the picturesque harbor of Yythion it is an hour’s drive through the land of Morea to the site of Mistra. Tmistra churchhe rock still dominates the valley and the historical town of Sparta with its extensive Byzantine ruins rising from its soil reminding visitors of the stories and deeds of its medieval kings and governors. Following your guide, you will explore the upper and lower town of Mistra. Numerous Byzantine churches, palaces and forts, paved streets and arcades are there to add to the spell and mysticism of the site. The Metropolis (St. Demetrius church) was the first to be built. A little further up, the church of St. Theodoroi and the Odigitria (Virgin Mary church), are superb in architectural style and wall paintings. From there, take the uphill path leading towards Pandanassa Monastery (Queen of the Universe) which offers a magnificent view of the valley of Eurotas. The unique Perivleptos church is the last to be visited, on the way back to the coach park.
NOTE: The drive to Mistra is 60 minutes each way. You will spend 1hr 30 on the site. Comfortable, non-slip shoes are recommended. The use of cameras and video-cameras is free of charge in the site, but flash in the churches is prohibited. A lot of down hill walking is involved.

greek coastDay 6 – Wednesday, July 15: At Sea
A relaxing day at sea today, cruising the coast. The stark cliffs and brilliant blue sea and sky are sights not to be forgotten.

Day 7 – Thursday, July 16: Corfu, Greece
corfu The lushest (and some say the loveliest) of all the Greek Islands, Corfu lies just a stone'sstatue of achilles throw from the Albanian coast. And nowhere is the stunning natural beauty of Corfu more evident than in the small village of Paleocastritsa, where legend says Odysseus was washed ashore to be rescued by Nausicaa. Another sight not to be missed is the Achillion Palace built for the Empress Elizabeth of Austria and later owned by Kaiser Wilhelm I. The British made Corfu a major base during the Napoleonic wars and you can see the lovely 1824 villa, Mon Repos, where Prince Philip was born.

Shore Excusions:
Achilléion and Old Town
By air-conditioned motorcoach and by foot. Min. 25/ Max. unlimited. 4 hours. Euros 33

Enjoy a pleasant drive through the verdant countryside teeming with orange, lemon, cypresses and olive groves. At the traditional village of Gastouri marvel at the Achilleion constructed under the rule of the Empress Elisabeth of Austria. She greatly admired the Greek hero Achilles and named the palace after him. After her assassination, Kaiser Wilhelm II bought the villa. The Greeks confiscated it in 1914. It’s built in neoclassical style with large frescoed rooms, ancient motifs and souvenirs of Elisabeth and Wilhelm II. The Italian terraced gardens are planted with flowers and Mediterranean trees and adorned with statues including the dying Achilles (by the German sculptor Hertachilleon corfuachilleon corfuer), across from which Wilhelm II set up a huge bronze statue of Achilles, the Victor. Once in this palace, you have the opportunity to visit the vast, impressive rooms and the striking gardens boasting exotic trees and flowers and commanding a breathtaking view of the Ionian Sea. From Achilleion you continue the panoramic drive to the Old Town and Spianada. Enjoy a walk through the old quarter, along the narrow cobblestone streets known as Kantounia and past the old cricket grounds. Enjoy some free time and stroll through the arcades of the Liston Piazza--once the palace stables—and catch a glimpse of the old Church of Saint Spyridon, boasting a priceless collection of icons and gifts offered to the patron saint of the island. Rejoin your coach at the old fortress entrance and return to the ship.
NOTE: The use of cameras and video cameras is free of charge in the Achilleion but flash is prohibited. The Achilleion being a famous place it might be very crowded in July.

Flavor of Corfu
By 4x4 open vehicles. One participant drives the vehicle! Min.16/ Max. 160. 4 hours 30 min. Euros 67

The tour departs from the port and ascends the main coastal road heading towards the island’s north coast, passing the resorts of Alykes, Kontokali and Gouvia. Upon arrival in Gouvia, the drive continues through Ag.Vassilios and Ano Korakiana before taking a narrow meandering road through Sokraki--one of oldest villages on the island, perched on the mountain peak and cloaked with pine and olive trees. The tour then continues off-road along a mountain ridge with a panoramic view of the islands Mathraki and Othoni, in the northwestern part of Greece, towards the village of Troumbetta From Troumbetta, follow a narrow country lane west, passing by the villages of Alimatades, Vistonas and Makrades before you make a stop at the Golden Fox Café, high up in the village of Lakones. The café is renowned for its spectacular panorama of the bay of Paleokastritsa. Owing to its position the cafe is also known as ‘God’s balcony’. Here can indulge in a typical Greek meze and a glass of wine. From Lakones, descend to Pakeokastritsa Bay where a stop for swimming (optional) will be made. It is then time to start the journey towards the vessel.
NOTE: Guests will be driving the vehicles which are 4x4 shift stick jeeps. A part of the tour is off-road. This tour is not advisable for guests with back problems. Drivers need to be older than 23 and have a driving license with them. It is recommended that drivers have expertise in driving 4x4 vehicles.

kotorDay 8 – Friday, July 17: Kotor, Montenegro
You might think you were sailing up a Norwegian fjord; in fact this stunning rock-walled chasm splimontenegrotting the coastal mountains of Montenegro is the longest arm of the sea in southern Europe. As you venture deep into the heart of Boka Fjord you’ll see several charming villages along the shore, however at its very end Boka harbors one of the prettiest, unspoiled towns you’ll ever see, the medieval city of Kotor. Founded by the Romans, fortified with massive walls during the Byzantine era, then ruled by Venice for much of its history, Kotor has been naturally preserved by its isolation.

Shore Excusions:
Guided Walking Tour of Kotor
By foot. Min. 25/ Max. unlimited.1 hour 30 minutes. Euros 20

Upon disembarkation we will start the walking tour of Kotor, an old medieval Mediterranean town in the beautiful fjord. Kotor is the old maritime centre of Montenegro, full of monuments, shops, café bars, and restaurants. It is under the UNESCO protection. We will visit the Maritime museum, the Cathedral of St. Tripun from 12th century, and Greca square, where the two orthodox churches, St. Luka and St. Nikolas, are situated. After the guided portion of the tour the guests will have the opportunity to explore the city on their own, before heading back to the ship.
Inside visits: Maritime Museum, Church of St. Nikola

Perast & Kotor
By bus and boat. Min. 25, Max 48. 4 hours. Euros 57

Upon disembarkation you will drive through beautiful bay of Kotor to Perast, a small baroque village hidden behind the islet of Lady of the Rocks. The most beautiful buildings of this small city were built in the 17th and 18th century. It is a small and peaceful place which abounds in sacred monuments, such as the Church of St. Nicholas built between 15th and 17th century. Here you will visit the Maritime Museum. After the visit you will have free time to explore Perast on your own before you sail to the islet Gospa od Skrpjela or Lady of the Rocks and its church called as well Lady of the Rocks. Gospa od Skrpjela is a baroque church on one of two islets, deep in the Bay of Kotor, across from the town of Perast. According to the legend, the islet was made over the centuries by the seamen who kept an ancient oath. Upon returning from each successful voyage, they laid a rock in the Bay. Over time, the islet gradually emerged from the sea. Our Lady of the Rocks was seen on the sight. The church contains 68 magnificent paintings by Tripo Kokolja, a famous 17th century artist from Perast. His most famous painting, ten meters long, is The Death of the Virgin. Then, you will embark the coach and drive from Perast to Kotor. On our return to Kotor we will start the introductory tour of Kotor, an old medieval Mediterranean town in the beautiful fjord. Kotor is the old maritime centre of Montenegro, full of monuments, shops, café bars, and restaurants. It is under the UNESCO protection. The Cathedral of St. Tripun from 12th century, the orthodox church of St. Luka will be viewed from the outside.
NOTE: Light clothes and sturdy shoes are recommended for that tour. There is a 20 minutes drive to Perast You will visit the Maritime Museum in Perast, Gospa od Skrpjela church.

Day 9 – Saturday, July 18: Dubrovnik, Croatia
It was dubrovnik skylineGeorge Bernard Shaw who said, "Those who seek paradise on earth should come to Dubrovnik." Indeed, Dubrovnik is a treasure by any measure made more precious by its miraculous restoration. Crowned by the Minceta Tower, the 10th century city walls are the proud symbol of Dubrovnik's colorful history. In the cathedral treasury, a collection of priceless golden reliquaries include the remains of St. Blaise, Dubrovnik's patron saint. Stroll up the Stradún to the elaborately colonnaded Rector's Palace, designed by Onofrio de la Cava in 1435. This was the seat of the republic of Ragusa, a powerful Renaissance-era city-state boasting a fleet of 500 ships!

Shore Excusions:
Traditional Dubrovnik
By coach and by foot. Min 25/ Max 80. 4 hours. Euros 42

This is an opportunity to enjoy, not far from the city, a genuine village atmosphere and traditional specialities. The drive takes you through a chain of villages in the Konavle Valley to the small village of Poljice where you will visit the Glavic family and their typical Konavle style house. The family has lived here for generations producing grape brandy, olive oil and wine in traditional way. Your hosts will show you around the house, with a tdubrovnik harborraditional welcome drinks included (dried figs and homemade brandy). The romantic atmosphere, exquisite scenery, and the charm of your host will make the entire visit a memorable experience. You will continue your tour to the little town of Cavtat, founded centuries ago at the remains of Epidaurus. This beautiful region has long been a source of inspiration for artists and poets. On arrival, you will traverse the town’s palm-lined promenade. Here, residents and visitors congregate to enjoy the southern European summer weather. Having once served as a Roman settlement, Cavtat is today a favorite destination for sailors as well as yachting enthusiasts. Enjoy independently exploring the town at your own pace. Upon arrival to Pile Gate your guide will take you for an introductory tour of the Old Town showing you all the highlights of this medieval town. After the introductory tour you will have the opportunity to explore the city on your own.
NOTE: The drive to Poljica is about 60 minutes, the scenic drive to Cavtat is about 20 minutes, the drive to Dubrovnik is 30 minutes. You will spend 45 minutes with the Glavic family. You will have time at leisure in Dubrovnik

Hidden treasures of Dubrovnik
By foot. Min. 25/ Max. unlimited. 3 hours.Euros 44

Stari Grad, the old city of Dubrovnik and its medieval walls have been designated a world heritage site by UNESCO. Upon disembarkation you will walk to the Stradun, main street of the Old City of Dubrovnik where many fine buildings will be viewed from the outside – Sponza Palace, notable for its columned courtyard, Rector’s Palace, the seat of the Rector in once independent Republic, the Cathedral, Onofriou`s Column, etc. The first visit will be at the Cathedral whose roots stretch back to the 7th century. Beneath the Cathedral, nearby archaeological excavations have revealed the foundations and walls of two older churches. Around the mid- 12th century another magnificent church was constructed around the walls of the original church. Some say that this new church was financed by Richard the Lion-Heart who, on his return from the Third Crusade, was shipwrecked off the island of Lokrum. Saved by the citizens of Dubrovnik, he was so grateful he gave a substantial gift to finance the new church. You will then walk to visit to the ramparts. Part of the walls date from the 13th century, they are intact and encircle the old city with a circumference of more than a mile and a half (you’ll walk half way). From the top of the rampart you overlook the sea of roofs covered in a mosaic of clay and dried earth tiles. Twenty five metres high, six metres wide, the rampart has protected the city for seven centuries. Built in the twelth century, it was fortified one century later by fifteen square, gothic towers. The risk of Ottoman attack led to the existing towers being re-inforced in the fifteenth century: the Lovrijenac citadelle is in the west, the Minceta tower at the northern edge of the town, the Bokar tower that protects the Pile gateway, and the Revelin fort at the eastern entrance to the town. At the four fortresses a ditch was added, as well as a second layer of fortification on the inside. The walkway at the top of the rampart offers an impregnable view of the town: the steep, grid-like streets, the facade of the salesmans houses that border the Stradun, each one built with similar baroque style, the patchwork of tiles every now and then broken by a dome, a tower, a bell tower. Next stop is to the Dubrovnik maritime museum, located in St John’s castle which was rebuilt after the earthquake of 1979. The permanent display consists of 4000 exhibits which illustrate the naval history of Dubrovnik and the surrounding area. Among them are ship models dating back to the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries as well as flags, cannons, log books weapons and some rare books. After that visit a glass of sparkling wine will be served in front of the Maritime museum. Then you will descend from the walls and the guide will accompany you to the Old harbour or you can stay and take time to stroll around the city at your convenience and be able to get back to the ship at any time.
NOTE: Cameras & videos are not allowed in the museum. This walking tour includes a lot of uphill walking and staircases. It might be hot on the ramparts, do not forget to take some sun protection and a bottle of water. Inside visits: maritime museum and the cathedral

Day 10 – Sunday: July 19: Korcula, Croatia
korcula Framed by dense green forests of allepo pine and twisted cypress, the red tile roofs of Korcula make an inviting picture that makes you want to see more of this charming island town whose most famous native son was Marco Polo. The pale wheat colored stone Cathedral of St. Mark houses a treasure trove of Dalmatian and Italian art, including works by Tintoretto and Titian. Walk through the towering Land Gate for a great view of the town, try a traditional Korcula dish, spinning-wheel fettuccini. And if we’re lucky we may witness Korcula's thrilling Moreska Sword Dance.

Shore Excusions:
Korcula, Cultural and Historical Center
By foot. Min. 20 /Max unlimited. 2 hours. Euros 22

Korcula is perhaps most thought of for its history – from the house in which islanders believe Marco Polo was born, to medieval fortifications erected to keep the Turkish invaders and pirates at bay. These landmarks make the largest settlement on the island, also named Korcula, a fascinating town to explore. Here the main street does not cleanly bisect the town, but zig zags, the side streets feeding into it at an angle. And none of this is by accident; the zig zagging blocks the cold winter winds that blow in off the sea while a layout of the side streets tempers the heat of the midday sun. A tour of the town weaves in and out of the stone – paved streets in one of the most beautiful towns in Dalmatia. The tour spans centuries and myriad art forms. From the 14th – 16th century fortifications, taking you via the Rector’s palace with its 15th century turrets, into the City Museum housed in a 16th century mansion with an impressive array of artifacts and Byzantine icons that bring Korcula’s history alive. You will also visit the Treasury of the Abbey and the beautiful Cathedral.

Walking tour in Orebic
By boat and by foot. Min 20 / Max 35. 4 hours. Euros 54

The tour will start with a short boat ride across channel to get from Korcula to mainland in Orebic, from where the trekking tour will begin. The first stop will be made after approx 30 minutes of rather slow and moderate walking, in a Franciscan monastery overlooking Peljeski kanal and Korcula Island. In fact, the Monastery and the adjacent church were built in 15th ct as watch tower. Continue the tour towards the small village called Karmen, and the 17th ct church, which was the centre of the village in the past. In a nearby home of one of the inhabitants small refreshment consisting of sandwiches made of home made cheese and smoked ham will enrich your experience, and refresh you before return. Return back to the pier from where you will be transferred to Korcula by boat.
NOTE: Please note that this tour is weather dependent, and it will not be operated in case of bad weather. The Boat ride from Korcula to Orebic is 15 minutes each way The hiking part including several stops is 3hr 30 min. Some refreshments will be offered during the excursion

Day 11 - Monday, July 20: Hvar, Croatiacroatia
hvar cafe croatia The heavenly scent of lavender perfumes the air in the fields and valleys around the island of Hvar. Idyllically located just off the Dalmatian coast, the island and the little port named after it have been a favorite getaway ever since the time of the Romans, the Byzantines, the Venetians and even Austro-Hungarian royalty. See the perfectly preserved Cathedral of St. Stephen, the serene cloistered Franciscan monastery and the Venetian Arsenal, where one of Europe's first public theatres was established in 1612.

Shore Excusions:
Hvar Island Tour
By air-conditioned motor coach. Min. 25 / Max. unlimited. 3hr 30 min. Euros 57

The Island of Hvar is a well-known destination thanks to its mild climate and lush subtropical vegetation. The island is rich in cultural and historical monuments and remains of the ancient times can still be seen in most settlements on the island. The coach will take you from Hvar town to Starigrad, a small town famous for its large bay, which has long inspired artists and poets. Starigrad is a crowning glory in this majestic countryside. The town of Starigrad was the largest settlement on the island and dates back to the 2nd century BC. In Starigrad you will visit the Dominican Monastery, with its rich library of priceless books and paintings. After a short guided tour you will have some free time in the town before continuing your scenic ride toward village of Vrisnik, where your friendly host will welcome you to his traditional country home. He will provide special wine tasting and a local snack. The island's wines range from light whites to full-bodied reds; all of them made locally and produced only in small quantities. You will be able to taste some of the finest wines produced on the island. In between sips you can enjoy some local specialties such as smoked ham and homemade cheeses. Leaving the village of Vrisnik you will continue your ride toward the town of Hvar. Just before arrival, a short stop will be made at the Fortress above Hvar where a magnificent view of Hvar and the Pakleni Islands can be enjoyed.
NOTE: This tour includes panoramic drives. You will spend one hour in Staringrad, half guided and half on your own. The drive between Vrisnik and Hvar is one hour

Hvar, Pearl of the Adriatic
By foot. Min 25 / Max 60. 2 hours. Euros 40

Through narrow streets you will walk to the 15th century Franciscan monastery to visit the impressive Renaissance cloister, the old refectory that today houses a collection of lace, manuscripts and books and the church with its remarkable collection of paintings. The guide will then lead you to the main square to visit the Cathedral of St. Stephen, its treasury and bell tower with its distinctive mark of the Venetian rule. Interesting building seen from the outside is the Arsenal, an imposing building built in 1611. Inside the building there is Europe’s oldest community theatre established in 1612. After the guided portion of the tour your guide will take you to the restaurant which holds one of the most beautiful terraces in Hvar for some refreshments and snacks. Then you will have the opportunity to explore the town on your own before returning to the ship.

boats mali losinjDay 12 – Tuesday, July 21: Mali Losinj, Croatia
The warm sands of Cikat Bay are an irresistible magnet for beachgoers. And no wonder, the beach is 30 kilometres long and offers every watersport imaginable. In the fortified town of Veli Losinj, climb the 16th century tower and hear the history of the Uskoks, warrior refugees from the Turkish invasion who fled in 1526 to the coastal islands to start new lives under Hapsburg protection.

Shore Excusions:
Cycling on Losinj
By mountain bikes. Min. 15 / Max. 30. Approx. 3 hours. Euros 50

The Lungomare trail follows the coastline, passing through numerous bays and coves, through centennial pine forests. You will pass through the part known as Sunny Bay, which owes its name to its natural artibutes. It is a unique jewel of nature, with rocky beach and crystal clear water. At the other side of the island, the trail links Mali Losinj to Veli Losinj, where you’ll cycle by the sea, through the beautiful Rovenska Bay, which will attract your attention with its beautiful beach, the ancient breakwater and the fishermen atmosphere. Don’t forget your camera, because photo stops will be made along the route.
NOTE: Parts of the tour are uphill and off-road. We can not assure Mountain bikes without bar for ladies. Take a backpack for your water.

Leisurely Walk from Mali to Veli Losinj
By foot. Min 20 / no max. 2 hours. Euros 24

Island of Losinj has been inhabited since prehistoric times and its name was mentioned for the first time in historical sources in 1384 (Isola di Lussin). In the 18th and 19th century, trade, ship building and maritime affairs intensively developed on the island. You will start your walking tour in Mali Losinj, the biggest town and port on the island. Here you will visit the baroque parish church with the Venetian type belfry. After the pleasant stroll you will continue towards Veli Losinj, crossing over the small hill in between these two towns. The town has a great maritime tradition and the houses have beautiful gardens with an abundance of exotic plants brought to the island from all over the world by a local seaman. After Veli Losinj you can enjoy one of the beautiful
beaches or head back towards Mali Losinj.
NOTE: Light clothes, sturdy shoes, head cover and sun block are recommended. Inside visit: parish church in Mali Losinj. The walk between Mali and Veli Losinj takes approximately 30 minutes.

gondolasDay 13 – Wednesday, July 22: Venice, Italyvenice carnevale
Venice is the heart and soul of romance. Cast your eye on the rounded domes of San Marco, take a deep breath at the Bridge of Sighs, gaze on the golden lions and the Renaissance glories of the Doge's Palace, listen for the ghosts of Verdi, Puccini and Caruso at La Fenice Opera House, gape at the classic Palladian proportions of the Church of San Giorgio Maggiore, glide in gondola down the Grand Canal. And know that love is always in the air in Venice.


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