Ever in pursuit of an endless summer, don’t dive into your winter woolies yet! Combining two sundry locations Croatia City and Coast, a marvelous mode of travel, ancient ramparts, fine dining, and beach solitude. For now, the concept of a Grande Tour may not be on everyone’s datebook. These summer favorites easily glide into autumn, it’s not too late to plot!
Montenegro, Portonovi and Dubrovnik. Five-star hotel choices add an exceptional enticement: Villa Dubrovnik and in Montenegro – two superb choices Aman and the new One & Only in Portonovi. The summer crowds have moseyed home, autumn is the perfect time to enjoy day trips to islands near Dubrovnik.
Croatia by yacht is the ultimate in grande tour, but for fall, meandering cobbled streets and a day hire boat will be just peachy. A combination of culture, relaxation and stunning scenery. Bordering Slovenia, Hungary, Herzegovina and Bosnia, Croatia is a picturesque country with long stretches of coast and dotted with over 1000 islands. History, culture, and gorgeous views blur with pristine waters and pebbly coves. Dubrovnik is known as ‘The Pearl of the Adriatic’ and despite earthquake damage in 1667, it has managed to preserve its old town of beautiful Gothic, Baroque and Renaissance churches, palaces, and fountains. A major UNESCO restoration program ensures the medieval buildings, stone ramparts, and the cobblestone streets will be enjoyed for ages. Approximately 7.2 hours of sunshine warm the city every day, the city of Dubrovnik is the Eastern European Paradise. It is sort of what Hawaii is to North America.
You won’t want to miss exploring the Elaphite archipelago just a short boat ride from Dubrovnik. Soak in the amazing scenery, enjoy wine tasting and fresh seafood at small coastal cafes. Among the hidden gems is food at Bowa on the secluded Sipan Island, tables perched over the water or for a group reserve a cabana for lunch! The restaurant specializes in seafood and has several local wines and beers available. Give yourself plenty of time to enjoy the crystal-clear water for swimming or just reading a book in the sunshine on the lounge chairs along the beach. Close your eyes and think of Mediterranean. Imagine the bluest sea, and beautiful untouched islands with old olive, fig, cypress and orange trees… Imagine the sunlight on your face and the smells, the sounds. Imagine the secured bays, secret beaches, the forest. Welcome to Sipan, the largest of islands near Dubrovnik, a place where Mediterranean culture shaped lives and culture since the Roman times. At the secluded reached by water only, Bowa restaurant – a simple motto: A Passion for Food. The menu is simplicity itself: the daily catch of fresh fish; hand-picked vegetables; fruit from the garden; island olive oil. What they catch that day is what is served. A nostalgic tribute to the days when the three owners spent summers with their grandparents. It is very traditional, plain Dubrovnik cuisine – but fresh, and the best!
Korcula Island is one of the most beautiful islands in Croatia. Korcula Town, the ancient city is perched on a small peninsula and wrapped in defensive stone walls. The town’s pedestrian-only streets were designed like a fishbone; the main thoroughfare runs through the center with angled side streets branching off each side. The layout was thoughtfully planned to welcome the summer breeze and limit and the winter wind. If you are a history buff, it is not to be missed. Home to ancient sites, stunning coastline, local wineries and considered to be the birthplace of Marco Polo. People say that the Silk Road started from this island; Korčula has good reason to be proud to be home to Marco Polo’s house, a stone’s throw from Lešić Dimitri Palace. The building’s history dates back to the 17th century, when the Lešić family, rich property owners and merchants combined a number of semi-detached houses to create a palace worthy of that name. The island gem foodie scene is within the Relais & Chateaux 17th-century Lesic Dimitri Palace. And within, a foodie palace, Michelin Restaurant LD, curated by chef Marko Gajsk.
A gastronomic tour can include several different wineries and an oyster farm in Ston. You’ll learn how to farm oysters and enjoy the most delectable lunch on a private island. Traces of oyster farming in the Mali Ston Bay have existed since the period of Roman rule in this area. The first written documents on shellfish hunting date from the 16th century, and on breeding from the 17th century, records from the time of the Dubrovnik Republic.
And where to stay? Five-star luxury waterside hotel on the Lapad peninsula, the resplendent Hotel Dubrovnik Palace! Sea views from every room, within walking distance to most attractions in the Old Town, yet very secluded, hugging the shoreline of the Adriatic. Fifty-five modern rooms with a world class spa and four restaurants.
Mosey an hour north to unwind in Montenegro and explore the picturesque Sveti Stefan island by boat, stop for fresh caught seafood on sunny restaurant balconies hovering above the placid turquoise seas.
Portonovi – the new Riviera Destination, the gateway to Boka Bay an idyllic Mediterranean-style village set amid the wild beauty of Montenegro’s Boka Bay. This is one of Europe’s most spectacular coastlines, a breathtaking region famed for its history, culture and wild natural beauty, mountain roads sweep through ancient towns and every turn holds another discovery. From days on the water to sun-filled afternoons spent exploring the ancient towns of Perast and Kotor, there’s no limit to the experiences to be relished.
Bringing refined luxury to the heart of Boka Bay, this is the first-ever European location from renowned brand One & Only. The property sits resplendently at the entrance of Boka Bay, a fjord-like idyll on Montenegro’s Adriatic Sea, a jewel sitting on Europe’s most fashionable new riviera. Slip into a glamorous nautical lifestyle, exploring rugged coastlines lapped by Adriatic waves and decorated with charming historic palaces. A palatial Adriatic resort on 60 lush acres overlooking a dramatic coastline of mountain vistas and calm waters. Definitely a destination hotel, with fine dining, a world-renowned spa and private beach. With a sheltered location on spectacular Boka Bay, the resort is the perfect base from which to explore the dramatic Montenegrin coastline. Rent a super yacht for an afternoon, hire a sailboard, or simply spend the day on the private white-sand beach, soaking up the scenic wonders of Boka Bay.
In summer, the place to be is at Aman Sveti Stefan. Within a country famed for its beauty, Montenegro’s most iconic destination is the tiny islet of Sveti Stefan. Overlooked by Villa Miločer, a graceful stone residence set on a pink sand beach. The former summer residence of Queen Marija Karađorđević, Villa Miločer offers several elegant suites, while the island provides accommodation in 15th-century stone cottages. Together they comprise the unequalled Aman Sveti Stefan. NB: Aman Sveti Stefan has closed for the 2021 season.
Endless summer with seven hours of sunshine a day guaranteed! Živjeli – A very common phrase in Croatia will be met with a shot of Rakija. This is the local drink of choice and used in every social gathering. Živjeli is pronounced “ji vo li” with the meaning of cheers!
The ABC of Croatia – a unique guide to Croatia customs, folklore and history.