Cruising the Dalmatian Coast: from Dubrovnik to Split is a spectacular tour, offering the same combination of experiences that has become the hallmark of Peter Sommer Travels’ gulet cruises in Croatia: a beautiful, traditional wooden gulet, fascinating archaeological and historical sites explored in the company of dedicated experts, a wonderful maritime landscape and – of course – delicious local food and wine.
Dalmatia, the southern part of Croatia’s Adriatic Coast, is a region of immense natural beauty and historical significance, an area where many fascinating strands in the story of human struggle and achievement are woven together into an extraordinary tapestry of culture. Even a casual glance at the map reveals much about this unusual place: while Croatia as a whole is set between the Mediterranean, the Balkans and Central Europe, Dalmatia itself is a country of mountains, sea and islands – important for ancient travellers and traders and perfect for a gulet cruise!
Over the centuries, many peoples have passed through Dalmatia, settled, competed, fought and interacted. From Dalmatian and Illyrian tribesmen via Greek colonists, Roman and Byzantine soldiers and emperors, to Croat warriors, Venetian traders, Ottoman and Italian fleets and French and Austro-Hungarian governors and engineers, they have left behind a unique cultural heritage, waiting to be explored and enjoyed.
It is almost impossible to describe the splendour of the miraculously well-preserved Palace of the Roman Emperor Diocletian at Split, repurposed as a medieval city centre, or the grandeur of Dubrovnik, heart of the thriving Renaissance trading republic of Ragusa, with her broad streets, fine monuments and mighty walls. Both are listed by UNESCO as World Heritage and the tiny and intimate walled town of Korcula on the island of that name, a true Adriatic gem is on the tentative list for World Heritage status. Alongside these, there is much more to be discovered: the lofty slopes of Brac with grand views over the surrounding islands, the theatre-like harbour town of Hvar, its monuments and traditions revealed by a leisurely stroll through lanes and squares, the vineyards of remote Vis, first planted by ancient Greeks from Sicily, engulfed in the scent of wild herbs…
All of these joys await you, along with many opportunities to swim in azure waters, to relax on your elegant gulet, to sample the delicious Croatian cuisine – uniting all the cultural influences that have affected the region with the high-quality meats and fish it produces – and to try the islands’ fine wines. Cruising the Coast of Dalmatia is unforgettable, a holiday of great beauty and a voyage of discovery.
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Day 1: Our gulet is in Slano Bay about one hour from Dubrovnik airport. Welcome drinks and dinner on board.
Day 2: In the morning we visit Dubrovnik, once better known as Ragusa, Venice’s chief rival in the Adriatic. We tour its remarkable walls, which protected the city from attack for many centuries, explore the grand streets and elaborate monuments of its historic centre and pay a visit to the superb maritime museum. In the afternoon, we set out for our first crossing, to a quiet cove off the island off Mljet.
Day 3: We continue to the verdant island of Korčula. After lunch, we explore the picturesque lanes and squares of Korčula Town and visit its beautiful cathedral, followed by the ecclesiastical museum, a veritable cabinet of curiosities, and the city museum with its archaeological exhibit.
Day 4: We make a long westward voyage to Vis, the most remote island on our itinerary. In the afternoon, we go ashore to explore the beautiful medieval harbour of Komiža, before a wine tasting at a unique and excellent local winery set in a World War Two bunker. We’ll then stroll around the charming town of Vis and enjoying a sumptuous dinner of local seafood at one of the best restaurants in the region.
Day 5: We cruise to the island of Hvar where we explore Hvar town, a labyrinth of stone houses set between slopes and sea, including the archaeological collections housed in the castle overlooking the port and in the seaside Franciscan monastery, which reveal the island’s past identity as the ancient Greek city of Pharos. Later, we cruise to the nearby Pakleni islets to spend the night in a quiet cove.
Day 6: We continue to the lovely port of Milna on the island of Brač. From here, we set out to the stonemasonry school of Pucišca, where the island’s ancient tradition of working and producing high-quality stonework continues to this day. Brač stone was used not only in the construction of the Palace of Diocletian but also in a number of other famous buildings like Berlin’s Reichstag. We then venture inland to the charming village of Škrip with its local archaeological museum. We enjoy a rustic lunch at a restored olive oil mill and then ascend the summit of Vidova Gora, the tallest Mountain in the Adriatic islands, to enjoy the splendid view over the Dalmatian coast.
Day 7: We head north to the harbour of Split, ancient Spalatum. The medieval heart of this lively city sits within the towering remains of the Palace of Diocletian, built for the Roman emperor’s retirement in AD 305 and the best-preserved structure of its kind. We explore its underground vaults, its walls and gates, the wonderful domed cathedral – originally built as Diocletian’s mausoleum – and the Temple of Jupiter. There is also time to take in the place’s unique atmosphere – and perhaps engage in a little shopping. In the late afternoon we cruise to a small island for a final swim before moving to our final mooring at Marina Baotić. Farewell dinner on the gulet.
Day 8: Departure transfers to Split Airport approx. 20 minutes away.
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Arrival Airport – Dubrovnik Airport (DBV)
Departure Airport – Split (SPU)
Arrival Location – Slano Bay (approx. 60 mins from airport)
Departure Location – Marina Baotić (approx. 20 mins from airport)
Embarkation and departure is planned for approx.17:00. You are more than welcome to arrive earlier to drop off your bags, but please be aware that the crew will be busy cleaning and tidying making everything ready for your group so you will not be able to settle into your cabin.
If your travel plans or flights do not allow you to arrive before 17:00 we recommend arriving the day before the tour starts. This would also allow time to relax, recover from any jet lag and arrive at the boat on time for embarkation and departure.
If you arrive at the gulet after 17:00, we will do our best to enable you to join the tour at a later time and place.
Please Note: Departure time is subject to change depending on weather, harbour, or other conditions.
Disembarkation is around 09:00. We will arrange local transfers on the first and last day of the tour.
Booking Flights: If you are staying in or connecting via Zagreb then the easiest way to get to and from the gulet is to fly. The main domestic airline in Croatia, Croatia Airlines, has a wide selection of flights .
Please note: Flights are subject to change. Please contact the airline for exact details.
If you prefer to book with a travel agent, we are happy to recommend specialists in a number of countries around the world, please contact our office for more details.
Travel Insurance:We consider adequate travel insurance to be essential. You should ensure that you take out a suitable policy, to make sure that your trip is properly covered.
Visas: Citizens of the U.K., EU countries, the U.S., Canada, Australia and New Zealand do not need visas to visit Croatia. Visitors can visit Croatia for up to 90 days in any 180 day period. For more details, please visit the website of the Croatian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
Custom tours or additional travel in Croatia: If you are planning to spend any additional time in Croatia before or after your gulet trip, we are happy to assist you either directly or via our trusted family-run partner agency in Croatia. In addition to our gulet trips, we also offer personalised tours and travel arrangements throughout Croatia. Whether you’re seeking a bespoke tour or simply need recommendations on things to see and do, we’re dedicated to making your Croatian experience unforgettable. Please contact us, we’ll be delighted to help.