We visited Croatia in October of 2021. After leaving Plitvice Lakes National Park, we headed to the east shore of the Adriatic Sea, known as Dalmatia, starting in Zadar then working our way south through Šibenik, Primošten, Split (including Hvar and Trogir), and finally Dubrovnik.
After leaving Plitvice Lakes National Park, we drove through tunnels and over mountains to Zadar, where we listened to the Sea Organ and watched the “Greeting to the Sun,” a light show powered by the sun’s energy. We enjoyed a fabulous dinner of John Dory fillet at Restaurant Bruschetta in Zadar and then strolled along the Riva. We climbed up to St. Michael’s Fortress in Šibenik and enjoyed a waterfront lunch. We wandered around the beaches of Primošten. We arrived in Split to cold and blustery weather and stopped for a warm-up with pear brandy at Semafor. We braved a miserable rainy and cold day in Split visiting Diocletian’s Palace, and then visited it again the next day when the sun came out. We climbed the Venetian bell tower at noon and got an earful of clanging bells. We drove to the Marjan Peninsula and visited Kašjuni Beach and then drove to Trogir and strolled the waterfront promenade. We ate one of our best meals of avocado & shrimp salad and stuffed green peppers with mashed potatoes at Semafor. We took the ferry to Hvar, where we zoomed through tunnels and mountain roads over the Island on a quad, with an enjoyable stop at a hidden winery in Jelsa. We took a ferry to the Pelješac Peninsula, saw shellfish cultivation, vineyards, and the Great Wall of Croatia, and imbibed in oysters at Mali Ston. We braved the hair-raising cliff drive into Dubrovnik. We strolled around Dubrovnik and stopped in at Buža I, where concrete stairs led to a beach. We ate delicious grilled calamari at Konoba Jezuite while bundled in a pink blanket against the frigid bura. We took our COVID tests with (luckily) negative results. We walked around the Dubrovnik City Walls and up to the Fort of St. Lawrence, where we had a birds’-eye view of the City Walls. We devoured Bosnian meatballs at the Taj Mahal and, the next morning, took the cable car to Mount Srd, where we had a great view of all of Dubrovnik. We climbed to Park Gradac for views and then ate our final meal at Restaurant Jezuite.
I recommend watching on YouTube for the best experience.
Our top eight experiences in Dalmatia were:
8) The Pelješac Peninsula and Mali Ston: eating shellfish, drinking wine. Climbing the “Great Wall of Croatia would have been fun, but we didn’t have time.
7) Primošten: the beach is beautiful and would be nice in summer.
6) Trogir: the rich and famous and their yachts.
5) Šibenik: Climbing to St. Michael’s Fortress for amazing views.
4) Dubrovnik: Walking around the City Walls. Otherwise, very touristy.
3) Split: lots to do. We were unlucky with weather but it would be great in warm weather.
2) Zadar: the town, restaurants, Sea Organ and “Greeting to the Sun.” Not so touristy.
1) Hvar: taking a quad and a secret winery at Jelsa. 🙂
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