From the Neretva to the Adriatic Sea
15-Day Travel in Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Self-drive tour from Split, which takes you to the heart of the Balkan heritage.
Straddling eras and traditions, this journey takes you from Split, the ancient city of Emperor Diocletian, to Sibenik, a successful fusion of Gothic and Renaissance art, via Sarajevo and Mostar, martyred cities at the end of the last century. Explore with our guides the old cities of the Adriatic, discover the contrasting neighbourhoods, crossroads of civilizations and religions, of the Bosnian capital, hike on the high plateaus of the Balkans between Bosnia and Serbia before taking a breath of fresh air in the middle of the Krka waterfalls or in the Dalmatian islands. This is certainly one of the most beautiful and richest trips we offer:
– Stay in the heart of romantic Trogir in a heritage hotel.
– Immersion in Mostar, the divided city, with the famous bridge.
– Witnessing the reconstruction of Sarajevo.
– The wide open spaces of Bosnia: the mountains around Lukomir and the high plateaus.
– The exploration of the Kornati Archipelago.
– Strolling through the ancient history of Split.
– Swimming in a secluded cove in the heart of the Adriatic Sea.
Length of stay: 15 days
Kind: Balkan Road Trip
Countries visited: CROATIA, Bosnia and Herzegovina
Your customized trip
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Day 1 : Split
Arrival at Split Airport and first contact with Croatia. Collection of your vehicle inside the airport. First kilometres in your vehicle. Drive to the Centre of Trogir. Check-in at the hotel. Overnight in a 4-star hotel in the centre of Trogir on the promenade. Superior room with view of the sea. Rental of a compact C-Class vehicle, type Opel Astra or similar , including:
– Unlimited mileage
– VAT tax
– Manual gearbox
– One driver insurance
– Basic third party insurance: CDW and TP.
Terra Balka can offer other options. On the spot the renter will be able to propose you additional insurances if necessary. – Option included: Cross Border(s) fee.
Day 2 : Trogir
Meeting with your guide for a private 1.5 hours walking tour to discover the beautiful and intimate Trogir. You will be guided through the narrow streets to discover the rich history of this island city protected by UNESCO. Its Greek, Roman and Venetian history makes it one of the most interesting historical oases on the Adriatic coast. Admire the masterpieces of local sculptors. The many palaces with their history are just some of the things that will impress you on this tour through the beautiful streets of this quiet little town.
Highlights of the tour:
The famous St. Lawrence Cathedral, the remains of the ramparts, Cipiko Palace, the Loggia and the Clock Tower, Kamerlengo Castle and St. Mark’s Tower, the many alleys, etc.
-> Any other requests? This city tour is tailor-made so we can adapt it:
* to your wishes of discovery by choosing this or that museum.
* to your wish of activity: on foot, by bike, gastronomic, oenological or treasure hunt. Trogir has many facets and our city tours are very varied. Overnight in a 4-star hotel in the centre of Trogir on the promenade. Superior room with view of the sea.
Day 3 : Trogir
Direction Mostar along the Makarska Riviera. Passage at Omis, on the banks of the Cetina River which forms an impressive canyon. Numerous swimming breaks possible, rivalling in beauty. Continuing to Makarska: a beautiful walk in the marina and of course the view of the Biokovo massif. Crossing the border to Mostar, the pearl of tourism in Bosnia-Herzegovina with its bridge classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Visit along the way the villages of Pocitelj and Blagaj. Check-in at the hotel. Overnight in a 4-star hotel. Superior room.
Day 4 : Mostar
Private visit of Mostar, its magnificent old town, its world-famous bridge over the emerald green Neretva River which flows through the rocky canyon, its mosques and steep alleys. Visit of the whole Old Bridge District of the Old City of Mostar and its architectural features. Overnight in a 4-star hotel. Superior room.
Day 5 : Mostar
On the way to Sarajevo, via Lake Jablanica. Situated on the banks of the Neretva river and between the Cvrsnica and Prenj mountains, this artificial lake created in 1953 offers to every nature lover a very pleasant spectacle with its turquoise water colours. The region is famous for its granite, which was used, among other things, for the construction of the United Nations headquarters in New York and the mausoleum of Petar II Petrovic-Njegos on Mount Lovcen in Montenegro. Lunch by the lake on some kind of boats – restaurants. An atypical experience to live when travelling in Bosnia. Continuation to Sarajevo. Check-in at the hotel. Meeting with your guide for a private 1.5 hours discovery of Tito’s Bunker .
A real leap into the past for an unusual visit. The Atomic Warfare Command, also known as the Ark and nicknamed Tito’s Bunker , is a former nuclear bunker and military command centre. Built to protect Yugoslav President Josip Broz Tito and up to 350 members of his entourage in the event of an atomic conflict, the structure consists of residential areas, conference rooms, offices, strategic planning rooms and more. The bunker remained a state secret until after the break-up of Yugoslavia in the 1990s.
Tito’s bunker now serves as a meeting point for artists from the region , Europe and around the world. The objective of the Project’s Biennial of Contemporary Art is to transform a site still officially under military control into a prestigious regional cultural institution at the forefront of emerging artistic currents. In 2011, the Council of Europe has designated the project as a cultural event of Europe, and it also enjoys strong support from UNESCO. Overnight in a 4-star hotel in the heart of Sarajevo. Standard room.
Day 6 : Sarajevo
Meeting with your guide for a private walking tour in Sarajevo, for about 3 hours. The best way to explore this city is to combine the rich history and culture with the tasting of gastronomic specialties.
You first explore the Ottoman part of Sarajevo , known as Baščaršija and then the Austro-Hungarian part of Sarajevo with the characteristics of the Yugoslavian period. Your guide will pass on to you all his knowledge about the different eras that marked the history of this young country, through a painful construction. Because the discovery of a country goes through its culture, the visit is punctuated by tasting of Ćevapi, Burek, local beer and Baklava . Finally, you discover the inside of a typical Bosnian house to taste the famous local coffee . Meeting with your guide for a 3-hours walking tour in Sarajevo .
This tour is ideal for understanding the history of the siege of the city. Your guide will take you to the places that were marked by this complicated period: the former Holiday Inn Hotel (located in the famous Sarajevo Snipers’ Alley ), the War Tunnel Museum, the Lav Cemetery, the Olympic Stadium in Koševo, the Jewish Cemetery and the Yellow Bastion . This walk allows you to put life in Sarajevo during the siege into context. The tour is as interesting as it is striking, as your guide will witness. Overnight in a 4-star hotel in the heart of Sarajevo. Standard room.
Day 7 : Sarajevo
Meeting with your guide for a private full-day discovery of the East of Bosnia.
Departure around 7:45 am and direction, the Borak Stećci Necropolis classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site to understand the medieval Bosnian kingdom then visit Višegrad and its Mehmed Paša Sokolović Bridge. Short navigation on the river Drina before reaching Drvengrad Kustendorf, the village built by the director Emir Kusturica for his film Life is a Miracle. Then go back in time during a 15 km train trip in Serbia, aboard the Šargan Eight . The line seen from the sky looks like an 8 , hence the nickname given to it by Šarganska osmica . Continue to the Tara National Park , which with its biological diversity offers opportunities for hiking and trekking. Stop at Banjska Stena , which offers a grandiose panorama of Lake Perućac and the Drina River, which naturally borders Bosnia and Herzegovina and Serbia. Return to Sarajevo in the evening around 9 pm. Overnight in a 4-star hotel in the heart of Sarajevo. Standard room.
Day 8 : Sarajevo
Meeting with your guide for a private 4.5-hours original walking tour in Sarajevo.
Join the world of Street Art in Sarajevo and create your own graffiti on a half-day tour of Sarajevo. Discover the origins of street art in Sarajevo by visiting the most important places in Sarajevo under the guidance of one of the most prominent local street art artists . At the end of the day, reward yourself with excitement and adrenaline by painting your own graffiti in one of the most incredible places in Sarajevo. We won’t tell you more. Overnight in a 4-star hotel in the heart of Sarajevo. Standard room.
Day 9 : Sarajevo
Meeting with your guide for a day in nature from Sarajevo. During this hike you will visit the highest nomadic village in the whole Balkan region – the village of Lukomir and a less remote village – the village of Umoljani. Admire one of the deepest and most remote canyons in Europe – the Rakitnica Canyon and enjoy the panoramic views and incredible natural scenery. Discover with your guide the local Lukomir nomadic traditions that have been preserved for centuries, taste traditional Bosnian food and coffee, meet the locals and listen to amazing legends. An experience in the heart of nature that is both exotic and rewarding. Overnight in a 4-star hotel in the heart of Sarajevo. Standard room.
Day 10 : Sarajevo
Direction the Adriatic and the city of Sibenik, a jewel of extraordinary whiteness. Road from Sarajevo to Travnik, a pretty city that has almost kept the same appearance as during the Ottoman period. The numerous mosques, houses and fountains are witnesses of this period. Known for its 16th century fortress, the Sarena mosque is also worth a look. Then on to Croatia and on to Sibenik. Check-in at the hotel. Meeting with your guide for a private 2-hours walking tour in Sibenik. City tour in the old town and its beautiful medieval quarter whose immaculate stone buildings are reflected in the calm waters of its bay.
Highlights of the tour: Old Town, Monastery and Church of St. Francis, Roberto Visiani Park, Calelarga promenade, St. John’s Church and Mala Loza Square, Town Hall and Main Square. Overnight in a 4-star palace hotel in a historical building in Sibenik. Superior room.
Day 11 : Sibenik
Sailing day in the Kornati Islands. Group excursion. You will discover the largest archipelago in the Adriatic Sea with 147 islands (the majority of them are virgin), whose amazing white rock formations shimmer magically on the blue of the sea. Departure at 9 am from the pier.
* Panoramic visit of Kornati National Park, the cliffs and ruins of Mana Island
* Swimming and snorkeling
* Lunch break (not included, different taverns are offered on site)
* Sailing through the archipelago then break on Prvic Island. Complete panorama on the bay of Sibenik and the St Antony canal.
* Return to Sibenik at 6 pm.
-> Transfer from your hotel in the morning if necessary . Overnight in a 4-star palace hotel in a historical building in Sibenik. Superior room.
Day 12 : Sibenik
Departure to Krka National Park and its 7 waterfalls , to spend the day there. Ten minutes drive to Lozovac, on the outskirts of the park. Complete visit of the park, on foot and by boat. Boat trip to discover the Franciscan monastery on the islet of Visovac, a pearl of Croatian natural and cultural heritage, the Roski Slap waterfalls, the Krka monastery and the remains of the Trosenj and Necven fortresses. During the whole visit you will be able to admire the beauty of these landscapes consisting of canyons, lakes, waterfalls, historical remains, etc… Everything that man and nature have been able to create for centuries. Swimming in front of the Skradinski buk waterfalls. Late afternoon return to Sibenik. Visit of the Krka Park, on foot and by boat. From Skradin up the Krka Canyon by boat to the Skradinski buk waterfalls. Walk of about 2 hours around the site + swimming possible. Return to Skradin by boat.
-> The visit of the other sites of the park is not included. If you wish to do it, boat tickets are to be paid on the spot and Terra Balka must be notified in advance to coordinate the return transfers. Overnight in a 4-star palace hotel in a historical building in Sibenik. Superior room.
Day 13 : Sibenik
Visit the jewels of the Adriatic: Trogir and Split. Departure from Sibenik and drive along the coast, where you will enjoy panoramic views and charming little towns like Primosten. Arrival in Split and check-in at the hotel. Visit, tasting and traditional meal of the region. Stop for about 3 hours to discover an ecological village:
– Visit of the domain
– Two different tastings to choose from:
a) Forgotten Croatian recipes – dishes based on ancestral recipes, and local products (cheeses, olive oils, tapenades, olives, ham, delicatessen with dried figs, olives, almonds, lemons and oranges, local wines and many other local specialties either
b) Tastes of Croatia – two types of olive oils with bread, delicatessen oils with a special flavour to each oil, wines and cheeses
– Traditional meal of the region (5 different menus to choose from). Meeting with your guide for a private walking tour of Split for about 2 hours. Split, a true wonder of the Adriatic, is experienced intensely. As soon as you arrive, you can already feel the dynamism of the city listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Split has both a rich historical heritage and a lively local life. A walking tour of the Diocletian’s Palace, which encompasses the entire old town. The magic of the place works and you take a trip back in time by landing in the middle of the Roman Empire. Discover on foot, and at your own pace, squares, markets, alleys and craft shops.
Highlights of the visit:
Palace Peristyle, St. Domnius Cathedral, St. Lucia Crypt, the Riva River Walk and Grgur Ninski’s Statue.
-> Is there something else you want to see? This city tour is tailor-made, we can adapt it:
* to your desires of discovery by opting for such and such a museum;
* to your wish of activity: on foot, by bike, by segway, gastronomic, wine tasting, treasure hunt, etc… Split has many facets and our city tours are very varied.
[To discover Split in video, click here. ](https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kb1cOVOZZBE) Overnight in a 3-star villa in an authentic preserved neighborhood near Split. Standard room.
Day 14 : Split
Exceptional full-day sailing tour in small groups on a speedboat off Split. Sailing with skipper to the blue paradise. Departure at 8 am. Presentation of the skipper then direction the island of Hvar. Discovery of the surroundings and the creeks before sailing to the island of Vis and its famous blue cave. Return around 7 pm.
-> Entrance fee to the cave to pay on site (about 10 euros per person). Overnight in a 3-star villa in an authentic preserved neighborhood near Split. Standard room.