You’ll spy manmade and natural treasures on this tour, which encompasses both the waterfall-splashed countryside and the old world town of Zadar. The day starts with a scenic drive to Krka National Park. A 2-hour visit will give you plenty of time to explore at your own speed. Skradinski Buk is one of the must-sees. It’s a voluminous pool of steps and ledges that create waterfalls and cascades. The largest of the lot plunges down a 45-metre drop. You’ll also have the chance to drop by one of the old watermills and the pocket-sized ethnographic museum. Afterwards, we’ll head back to Zadar, one of the oldest towns on the Dalmatian Coast. A walking tour of the walled Old City will lead you around a jumble of Croatian monuments, the imposing Church of St Donatus, a 14th-century university, and Venetian-style buildings with terracotta roofs. A visit to the Museum of Antique Glass is included, which houses over 2,000 ancient artefacts.
The Plitvice Lakes National Park lives up to its UNESCO World Heritage Site status. Over thousands of years, the bright turquoise waters skimming over the limestone and chalk riverbeds have created a series of natural dams. The result is a collection of waterfalls, caves and lakes embedded among thick forests. You’ll get almost 3 hours at leisure here, so you can explore the park at your own pace – and since it’s the largest national park in Croatia, there’s plenty to see. Aside from the much-photographed falls, you’ll find clusters of lakes, wide river canyons and forest-blanketed mountain slopes. Wildlife-wise, everything from butterflies to brown bears roam the forests, plus it’s home to over 1,000 different species of plants.
Zadar is one of the oldest towns on the Dalmatian Coast, having passed through the hands of the Romans, Crusaders, Croatians and Venetians. As you’ll see on this walking tour, it’s the last two who visibly made their mark – a mix of Croatian and Venetian architecture makes for a scene of pastel-pale buildings with terracotta roofs. The Old City is separated from its modern counterpart thanks to its spot on a protruding tongue of land. Your guide will lead you around this ancient part of town, which is still clutched by well-preserved walls. A jumble of Croatian monuments, archives, museums and libraries can be found here. Unsurprisingly, it’s also home to Croatia’s first university. A few more firsts were conjured up within its walls – the first Croatian novel and the first Croatian-language newspapers. Other highlights include the imposing Church of St. Donatus and the artefact-filled Museum of Antique Glass. After the tour, you’ll have the chance to explore the city in your own time before heading back to the ship.
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