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Dubrovnik to Athens

Trip type: 
Cultural
Adventure level: 
2. Gentle
Max group size: 
12
Avg user rating: 
Awaiting reviews
Croatia, Europe, Greece | 15 days
Trip code: 
ZMSM
New
What's included: 

Transport - Bus, Private Bus

Accommodation - Hotels (14 nts)

Meals - 5 breakfasts

Trip Highlights: 
Discover Dubrovnik
Beaches of Levkas
Friendly Albania
Lake Ohrid cruise
see full itinerary >>

Holidays in Europe
You'll follow an itinerary which has been researched and planned by our experts, saving you all the hassle of organising the trip. The itineraries are designed to minimise the time spent travelling and maximise the variety of experiences.
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Itinerary for Dubrovnik to Athens

(2014-15)
  • Day 1 - Dubrovnik
  • Day 2 - Kotor
  • Day 3-4 - Tirana
  • Day 5-6 - Ohrid
  • Day 7-8 - Skopje
  • Day 9 - Lake Prespa
  • Day 10-11 - Ioannina
  • Day 12-13 - Levkas
  • Day 14-15 - Athens
Extensions and Extras: Extend your holiday and see more of the world. View additional tours for this trip »
Day
1

Dubrovnik

Dobro Dosli! Welcome to Croatia.

Your adventure begins with a welcome meeting at 6:00pm on Day 1.

You can arrive at any time as there are no activities planned until this important meeting. Please look for a note in the hotel lobby or ask the hotel reception where it will take place. If you can't arrange a flight that will arrive in time, you may wish to arrive a day early so you're able to attend. We'll be happy to book additional accommodation for you (subject to availability). If you're going to be late, please inform the hotel reception. We'll be collecting your insurance details and next of kin information at this meeting, so please ensure you have all these details to provide to your leader.

Croatia has recently piqued the interest of curious travellers searching for sunshine, sand and scenery. The chic cities of the glittering Adriatic coast, charming cobblestone towns, UNESCO World Heritage sites and thriving food and wine scene ensure visitors' curiosity is amply rewarded. Like many others, fall in love with the treasures of this Balkan beauty.

The undisputed jewel of the Dalmatian Coast, Dubrovnik is a beautiful white stone town surrounded entirely by city walls. Although it experienced devastation during the war in the early 1990s, the old town - with its tiled roofs and stone buildings - remains as charming as ever. Extensive restoration has taken place to return it to its original splendour, and even today repairs are still being undertaken. With the sparkling water of the Adriatic in the background, Dubrovnik is picturesque, full of character and can easily be covered on foot.

If you arrive early, why not head out to one of the Elafiti Islands? There's Lopud, a quiet island with lovely hikes, clean beaches and a ruined castle. Kolocep is a sleepy enclave that boasts walks for every fitness level and Sipan, which is the most populated of the isles and reputedly has the most hospitable inhabitants. Alternatively, you might choose to simply laze about on one of Dubrovnik's beaches and people-watch for hours.

There are many monuments to explore in the city including the 15th century Rector's Palace, monasteries with cloistered gardens, and fine baroque churches with copper domes. The main pedestrian promenade, once a shallow sea channel, is now paved with glistening white limestone, in stark contrast to the warm red terracotta roofs. It is hard to imagine a more beautiful city.

Optional Activities

  • Dubrovnik Diving - HRK550
  • City sights entrance - HRK10
  • Fish picnic cruise - HRK200
  • Franciscan Monastery - HRK20
  • Lokrum Island boat trip - HRK40
  • Lopud excursion - HRK60
  • War Photography Museum - HRK30

Accommodation

Hotel (1 nt)

Day
2

Kotor

A walk around the city walls (approx 2 km) is a highlight not to be missed. The walk takes around an hour and provides panoramic views over the city's rooftops and out across the Adriatic Sea. The walls are on average 24 metres high and 3 metres thick on the seaward side. The walls were also put to modern use during the eight-month siege of the city in the early 1990s. Thankfully most of the damage done has now been repaired.

Set on a secluded bay, Kotor is listed as a World Heritage site, and its crooked alleyways give lots of opportunities to get lost and mingle with the locals.

Take a cruise on the Kotor Fjord - the longest fjord south of Scandinavia - and visit grottos and an island with a church that is almost as big as the island itself!

Included Activities

  • City walls walk

Optional Activities

  • Cruise on Kotor Fjord - EUR25

Accommodation

Hotel (1 nt)

Day
3-4

Tirana

If you think you know Albania, think again. This addictive country has a myriad faces. In the rugged north, the Alps are so fierce they're 'accursed', while the south enjoys one of Europe’s least known and most beautiful coastlines. Tirana is filled with craziness, from its traffic to its nightlife, but on its doorstep are mosques, citadels, Ottoman architecture and a stunning dose of medieval Balkans. The real surprise of Albania is the people. Their warmth to strangers is infectious and you’re bound to find yourself swapping stories over a glass of raki or three.

Tirana is the capital of Albania and its biggest city, though it's small and compact with architectural influences from Italy and Turkey. Recently many buildings have been painted to alleviate the Soviet block feeling that pervaded. Many upgrades have been made all over town such as new parks and wide pavements - a process that's still ongoing.

Take a scenic 4km ride on the Dajti Express cable car for great views of the mountain and the city. You'll drift up to 1230m above sea level in approximately 15 minutes.

Tirana is dotted by many museums. You can't miss the National History Museum if you look for the gargantuan mosaic on the facade which represents the development of Albania's history with everyone from the time of the Illyrians. Inside, each hall of this vast building covers one of the stages in the development of the Albanian nation.

The main sight in Tirana is the Et'hem Bey Mosque which is right on the city's main square. Construction of the Xhamia e Haxhi Et'hem Beut started in 1794 and was finished in 1821 by Et'hem Bey. Closed under communist rule, the mosque resumed as a place of worship in 1991. 10,000 people attended the reopening and the event was considered a milestone in the rebirth of religious freedom in Albania. Take a look at the frescoes outside and in the portico that depict trees, waterfalls and bridges - motifs rarely seen in Islamic art. Remember to take your shoes off before entering the inner room.

Included Activities

  • Dajti Mountain Cable Car

Optional Activities

  • Daytrip to Kruja - EUR10
  • Et'hem Bey Mosque - Free
  • Kruja Castle - ALL100
  • Kruja Ethnographic Museum - ALL300
  • Skanderbeg Museum in Kruja - ALL200
  • Sky Tower - ALL250
  • National Art Gallery - ALL100
  • National History Museum - ALL700

Accommodation

Hotel (2 nts)

Day
5-6

Ohrid

Travel by private bus to Ohrid in Macedonia.

Get your bearings on an orientation walk around Ohrid.

At 34km long, 14km wide and over 300 meters deep, vast Lake Ohrid is one of Europe's oldest lakes and there's plenty of it to explore. Cruise the turquoise waters on a boat tour. Take in views of the town from the water and soak up the scenery whilst afloat.

Included Activities

  • Boat ride on Lake Ohrid

Accommodation

Hotel (2 nts)

Day
7-8

Skopje

 

In Macedonia’s political and cultural centre, walk through Macedonia Square and sample gomleze and tasty baklava. Take a step back to Ottoman time with a visit to the Daut Pasha Hamam or journey through the humbling Holocaust Museum to learn how Macedonia suffered during this tragic chapter of history.

Skopje's stone bridge over the river Vardar is an iconic sight and acts as a handy connection between Macedonia Square and the Old Bazaar.

Enjoy a Balkan wine tasting experience in the Tikvesh region, which is the centre of Macedonian wine production.

Perhaps visit the Museum of the City of Skopje, housed in the old Railway Station which is a unique piece of history itself. It's unusual, part-ruined exterior is a result of the 1963 earthquake. The large clock on the outside of the building is frozen at 5:17, the moment the earthquake shook the city.

Included Activities

  • Wine tasting

Accommodation

Hotel (2 nts)

Day
9

Lake Prespa

Take a boat trip on Lake Prespa, a gorgeous freshwater lake in the north-western corner of Greece. View the ruins of abandon villages while trekking around the surrounding mountains.

Accommodation

Hotel (1 nt)

Day
10-11

Ioannina

 

With astounding archaeological sites, islands of extreme beauty, bucolic villages and some of the greatest food you’ll ever consume, Greece should be on every traveller's list. This gem of the Aegean will satisfy your thirst for knowledge, lust for adventure, desire for partying and craving for cuisine. Opa!

Discover the wanders of Ioannia while ambling by the city’s bucolic villages and idyllic lake. In the evening, jump into Greek culture with a shot of Ouzo before a lively night out.

Included Activities

  • Orientation Walk - Ioannina
  • Day trip to Zagoria villages

Accommodation

Hotel (2 nts)

Day
12-13

Levkas

Take a private bus over a causeway to the island of Levkas on the Ionian sea.

In the birthplace of Greek goddess Aphrodite, there is nothing more to do than rest and relax on blue waters and white-sand beaches. Choose to follow the crowds to Porto Katsiki beach or try your hand at a challenging hike or mountain bike ride around the surrounding mountains.

Accommodation

Hotel (2 nts)

Day
14-15

Athens

There's much to be seen in the ancient capital of Greece, vibrant and refreshed following the 2004 Olympics, yet still retaining so much visible history.

Named after the goddess of wisdom, Athens has a weighty history that spills out over the modern city, represented most dramatically by the ancient Acropolis.

The birthplace of Western civilisation, Athens has an amazing array of historic sites to explore, including the National Gardens, the Temple of Olympian Zeus and the original Olympic Stadium.

Make sure you take the chance to dine on delicious Greek cuisine and try an ouzo or two.

There are no activities planned for the final day and you are able to depart the accommodation at any time. Please check the checkout times and luggage storage possibilities.

Optional Activities

  • Acropolis Pass for 5 sites - EUR12
  • Day trip to the Saronic Islands - EUR20
  • Day trip to Delphi - EUR25
  • Dora Stratou - EUR15
  • Lycabettus Hill - Free
  • National Archaeological Museum - EUR7
  • Numismatic Museum - EUR3
  • Sightseeing Bus No. 400 - EUR5

Accommodation

Hotel (1 nt)