Croatia and Italy by Land and Sea

Croatia and Italy by Land and Sea

From $ 7,755 AUD

Description

Buck the trend and join Intrepid on this new adventure cruise heading north from Split to discover what makes Croatia’s coast so special. The clear waters of the Adriatic await with a salty embrace, ready to welcome travellers and reveal its national parks, glittering bays and historic Old Towns nestled on the rocky shoreline. Then explore Italy and savour the many flavours of this gastronomic haven on a journey from the canals of Venice to the cobblestone streets of Rome. Explore historic sites and picturesque villages on this special food-lovers’ adventure through some of the most incredible places in Italy. There is plenty of time to indulge in everything from fresh seafood and hearty wines to the finest balsamic vinegars and pesto in the world.

Trip Name
Croatia and Italy by Land and Sea
Last Updated
1970-01-01
Days
19
Capacity
31
Highlights
  • Visit the stunning Kornati National Park, the biggest and most incredible collection of islands in the entire Adriatic Sea, once described by playwright George Bernard Shaw as God’s special creation of tears, stars and breath.
  • Experience the Sea Organ in Zadar, an incredible marriage of acoustical engineering and historical art with a shot of local liqueur as the literal cherry on top.
  • Soak up hundreds of years of history in the Old Towns of Rab, Krk and Sibinek.
  • See the real Venice on an optional gondola ride down the Grand Canal and through the city's complex network of waterways. Feel the romance as you pass beneath the Bridge of Sighs and the Rialto Bridge
  • A series of walking paths connect the pastel villages of Monterosso, Corniglia and Riomaggiore in Cinque Terre. Explore this amazing region on foot, or you can jump on a train if you need a break
  • The Leaning Tower of Pisa may be Pisa's most iconic image, but the city offers so much more. The Piazza dei Miracoli and Pisa Baptistry are masterpieces in Medieval-Italian architecture
  • There's a lot more to Florence than Renaissance art (although the art is pretty great). The Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore is brimming with nearly 600 years of history and stories
  • If Italian cuisine is known for its simplicity and big flavours, no place does this better than rural Spello. Let Umbrian delicacies such as lamb meat balls with rosemary and porcini risotto whet your appetite
  • No Italian adventure would be complete without a visit to Rome. Enjoy plenty of free time to discover the ancient Colosseum, stroll through Vatican City and gaze up towards the gods inside St Peter's Basilica

Itinerary

Travelling by sea is a fantastic way to explore, but it brings some challenges when weather conditions are not ideal. The itinerary may be subject to change, based on winds and sea conditions which may render anchorage and landing at some stops difficult. We reserve the right to change the itinerary for the safety of passengers and the ship. Shore excursions are subject to shore and weather conditions and are based on a minimum participation. Each days' schedule will be posted by the cruise co-ordinator listing necessary information such as arrival/departure times, meal times, days activities and other information. This is given as a guideline and is subject to change.

Day 1 - Split
Arrive in Split, Croatia’s second largest city, and meet your fellow travellers aboard the ship. Tonight there’ll be a welcome meeting, safety briefing and group dinner before overnighting in port.
Day 2 - Sibenik
Wake to the Adriatic and take breakfast on the deck. The morning is yours to enjoy and perhaps you’ll take a walking tour of Split before sailing for Sibenik, the gateway to the Kornati Islands. The ship will make an all-important swim stop en route, and you can stretch those sea legs on arrival Sibenik with a walking tour taking in the 15th-century stone cathedral. Follow your nose in the evening and seek out a Dalmatian dinner before heading back to the ship.
Day 3 - Telascica
Depart Sibenik in the morning and sail for the Kornati National Park. Made up of 89 stunning islands, Kornati is the perfect place to while away a day cruising around the beautiful bays, swimming and soaking up some rays. The ship will anchor in Telascica, a designated nature park since 1988 thanks to its historical, cultural and environmental value, and the crew will cook up a BBQ on deck. Kick back and enjoy the sunset with salty skin and a cold drink.
Day 4 - Zadar
This morning, local park rangers will take you on a hike around Kornati’s stunning limestone cliffs. Alternatively, if you’d rather spend your time on the water, there’s the option to explore the bays and inlets by sea kayak before sailing to Zadar, described by Alfred Hitchcock as having the most beautiful sunset in the world. A guided walk around the Old Town ends at the famous Sea Organ, a giant organ with underwater pipes that makes music as the waves gently roll in. Seriously, it’s a thing. Take a shot of Maraska, the local cherry liquor, then take your time exploring Zadar. Overnight in port.
Day 5 - Rab
The ship will depart Zadar in the morning and make its way to the island of Rab, which was first declared a city in 10 BC by the Roman Emperor Augustus. Stop for a swim along the way and spend the rest of the journey reading, getting some sun or simply staring at the crystal water. With ancient walls, churches and squares, Rab is the ideal place to explore on foot, be it with the local guides on a tour or by yourself in the evening. Hunt down some fresh seafood for dinner and discover why Rab is known as the Happy Island.
Day 6 - Krk
Join your leader on a hike around Rab or take a leisurely morning instead. The hike should take approximately three hours, after which the ship will head north to Krk with lunch en route. Krk is the equal-largest island in the Adriatic, a popular destination with beaches, a historic Old Town, myriad restaurants, bars and clubs. Take a guided tour upon arrival before being transferred to a local farm for prsut (prosciutto) and wine tasting and a lamb dinner.
Day 7 - Opatija
The penultimate morning is free for you to explore Krk town at your own pace. Popular sights include the Frankopan Castle and the Cathedral of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary (Krk Cathedral), the latter of which was built over 15 centuries ago. Ask your leader for advice on where to lunch or find your own Adriatic gem before sailing to the rocky shore of Opatija in the afternoon. Tonight you’ll dine with the captain and reminisce with your shipmates before tomorrow’s farewell.
Day 8-9 - Venice
Today your adventure cruise will come to an end on arrival at Marco Polo Airport. You will then be transferred to your hotel in Venice where you will have three days to explore this fascinating city.
Day 10 - Venice
This watery wonderland of bridges, towers, piazzas, canals, churches and gondolas – practically unchanged for 600 years – is literally sinking under the weight of its iconic sights. There are no activities planned before tonight's group meeting, so if you arrive early there are plenty of things to keep you busy. Take a walk around the maze of streets behind San Marco square and begin to understand the complex canal system of Venice. The Grand Canal is a great place to start, as you can stroll over the Rialto Bridge and browse the endless amounts of boutique shops that sell Venetian masks and handmade Murano glassware. After the meeting, enjoy dinner with your fellow travel companions at a local restaurant.
Day 11 - Venice
After breakfast, venture out and explore Venice. There are only two ways to get around this city – on foot or by boat. Some of the more popular sights include Doge's Palace, the Piazza and Basilica di San Marco and the Bridge of Sighs. Take the vaporetto (water bus) over to the island of San Giorgio to climb the bell tower for the best view of Venice. No trip here would be complete without a journey down the Grand Canal in a Venetian gondola. It's a common way for visitors to see the major canal routes from an immersive perspective. While away your day in the busy San Marco square and be sure to try the local tiramisu and Italian coffee that's on offer. There’s creativity everywhere, overflowing into the canals; see it in the venetian glass in Dorsoduro or down the streets spreading out from Campo Santo Stefano, lined with unique galleries and small boutiques. Visit the Palazzo Ducale, overflowing with paintings by Italian masters, and contrast it with the modern Guggenheim. Simply enjoy getting lost crossing the hundreds of bridges and uncovering your own slice of Venice. In the evening, perhaps join your fellow travellers for a group dinner at a local restaurant. Venice is famous for its specialities of fresh lobster and squid ink spaghetti dishes, so make sure you give one a try.
Day 12 - La Spezia
This morning after breakfast, spend the day travelling by train to the once important naval base of La Spezia (approx 5 hours), now the gateway to the gorgeous Cinque Terre, or ‘Five lands’ in English. The name comes from the five tiny villages – Monterosso, Vernazza, Corniglia, Manarola and Riomaggiore – whose position, wedged into a series of coves between sheer cliffs, makes it one of the highlights of the whole of Italy. The journey usually takes between five and seven hours either via Milan or via Florence (depending on the best available connection), and is a very scenic trip through the north of Italy. On arrival in La Spezia there won't be too much time to explore yet, but after checking into your hotel perhaps get your bearings of the area with a short walk around the pedestrian zone on Via del Prione to the gardens along the harbour, or head out for dinner with the group.
Day 13 - Cinque Terre
This morning venture out on the footpaths of Cinque Terre (Five Lands), a region of Italy famed for its coastline and pastel villages. The footpaths that run between the villages were once the only way to travel in the region, and take you through olive groves, vineyards and on to idyllic vistas. You can choose to walk just a few sections, which will still unveil a great amount of majestic scenery. Some sections of path can be difficult, as there are challenging uphill stretches, narrow paths, steep cliffs and foot bridges. Please remember to bring comfortable footwear such as trainers or light hiking shoes. It's also possible to take the train between any of the villages or back to the group's base whenever you want. After working up an appetite, take advantage of the foods of the Liguria region with a pesto class. Focaccia is also a speciality in this area and makes a great start to lunch. The rest of the day is free. In the evening, there's no better way to recover from your day of walking with more indulgence in delicious Mediterranean food.
Day 14 - Pisa / Florence
Depart Cinque Terre today and catch a train to Pisa (approximately 1-2 hours). Divided in two by the River Arno, the heart of Pisa is the Santa Maria quarter on the north bank. Here there'll be ample time for you to visit the world-famous Leaning Tower, as well as the Duomo (Piazza dei Miracoli, once the largest in Europe) and Pisa Baptistry. Please note that it's not always possible to climb the tower, although you'll have plenty of time to take pictures and explore the city. The tower was built in the 12th century, but its foundation was on shifting sand and clay, meaning that it now leans at an angle of 4 degrees (after restoration and stabilising work). Wander the shopping streets, from high-end boutiques to speciality book and antiques stores, and perhaps enjoy lunch and an aperitif in a backstreet restaurant. Return to the station in the afternoon and take the train to Florence (approximately 2 hours). After checking in to your hotel in Florence, the rest of your evening is free to explore the city of the Renaissance.
Day 15 - Florence
After breakfast head out into Florence, one of the most culturally rich and beautiful cities in Italy, known to many as the beating heart of Tuscany. The Medicis, Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, Brunelleschi, Machiavelli, Donatello and Michelangelo all lived in Florence at the height of their creative reign. It's impossible to see everything in this Renaissance wonderland, however, so take your time and enjoy it. Perhaps visit the Uffizi, one of the world's oldest art galleries, or walk up to Piazzale Michelangelo, which is set on a hill on the south bank of the Arno River, to take in beautiful views of the city – a lovely way to while away the day. There are plenty of sights to see during your time in Florence. Food is also a major part of the city's identity, so perhaps explore some of the culinary delicacies on offer from across Tuscany. Regional specialities are noted for their simplicity and fine flavour, and the use of high-quality olive oil, cannellini beans and fresh herbs. Meat lovers should try the bistecca alla fiorentina, a huge T-bone steak that's usually shared between two people, or ribollita, a thick delicious vegetable soup with bread, beans and greens. Panforte is the signature sweet treat.
Day 16 - Perugia
After a free morning in Florence (perhaps visiting the Galleria dell'Accademia where you can see Michelangelo's famous statue of David), travel by train to Perugia (approximately 2-3 hours). The once Roman settlement of Perugia sits atop a rocky hill with views over the rolling green hills of the Umbria region, and is now a university town with one of Italy's largest schools. On arrival, head out on an orientation tour of the city’s rambling maze of medieval streets. In your spare time, and for an insight into local history, perhaps visit the National Gallery of Umbria (Galleria Nazionale dell'Umbria), an impressive collection of Umbrian art housed in the Palazzo dei Priori, a grand stone building dating from the 13th century. Your evening is then free, with the city's population of students filling the nights with life. Pause for a glass of prosecco along Corso Vannucci, the city’s main street, as you take a very Italian passeggiata.
Day 17 - Spello / Perugia
Today visit the nearby medieval town of Spello by train (approximately 20 minutes), a Roman town that straddles a thin ridge at the base of Mount Subasio – the mountain where St Francis was said to have talked to the animals. It’s a place known for its wine and rural charm. Two of the local churches feature frescoes by famed Renaissance painter Pinturicchio, who later lent his hand to works in the Vatican and Siena’s cathedral. Sample the local wine and regional delicacies here when you lunch at a local enoteca. Tartufo truffles) and porcini (mushrooms) make up the base of many pasta and risotto dishes, while whole stuffed pig with rosemary is a signature dish of the region. Back in Perugia the rest of your evening is free. It’ll be very hard not to spend the whole time indulging on the region’s fabulous food.
Day 18 - Rome
In the morning, take the train to Rome (approximately 2 hours), and remember that while here, the best attitude is ‘when in Rome’! Join your leader on an orientation walk around the city, where you see some of the iconic sights such as the Colosseum and Arch of Constantine, the Forum (centre of ancient Rome), the Victor Emmanuel Monument, the Pantheon, Trevi Fountain, Piazza Navona, Spanish Steps, Via Dei Condotti and Piazza Venezia. No visit would be complete without a trip to Vatican City and St Peter's Basilica. Entry to the Basilica is free and there's a small charge to climb the dome for a panorama over the city. Use your free time to also visit the Vatican Museum and Sistine Chapel. Rome is packed full of restaurants and trattorias that cater to every taste and budget. Local specialities tend to be quite heavy, and include pastas such as carbonara (egg, cheese and bacon) and amatriciana (tomato, bacon and chilli). Eating in trattorias will give you a chance to sample some Italian wines, with house choices usually very good and affordable. Head out in the evening with the group for a final farewell gastronomic fling.
Day 19 - Rome
Your Italy Experience comes to an end this morning. There are no activities planned for today and you're free to depart the accommodation at any time after you check-out. As there is so much to see in Rome we recommend you to stay a little longer. We are happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability). Please speak to your agent at the time of booking.

Trip Dates

StartEndPrice FromRoom Type
22-06-201910-07-2019AUD $ 7,755LowerDeckStandardDouble
07-09-201925-09-2019AUD $ 7,755LowerDeckStandardDouble

Accommodation

Small cruise ship (7 nights),Hotel (11 nights)

Transport

Small cruise ship,Boat,Minibus,Train,Public bus,Ferry,Metro,Taxi

Map