Visit Zadar in spring and spend 7 days in blooming nature. Local guide will take you in search for wild asparagus, a “nutritive gem”, and on a “cooking class” dinner learn how to prepare delicious specialties. Discover Pag, moonlike island and family owned cheese factory, walk along Krka waterfalls, learn how Dalmatian prosciutto is made, try riding a horse and spend a day on Vrana, the largest lake in Croatia.
Zadar – Pag – National park Krka – Nature park Vrana lake
7 days, 6 nights (6 overnights in Zadar)
AVABILITY: 15.03. – 30.04.
Asparagus is known as a nutritive bomb and it is considered to be among the healthiest food in the world. They were cultivated by the Chinese more than 5.000 years ago, and were brought to Europe by Romans via Egypt and Greece. Asparagus gained popularity during Roman period, when due to its high nutritional value, servants went to harvest asparagus for the emperors, so it got the nickname “Imperial vegetables”.
Asparagus grows as a wild plant only in Croatia’s coastal part, and the harvest season begins in March and April. With the first days of spring, locals start going outdoors for picking asparagus, and afterwards they prepare real culinary delicacies from them. Mostly asparagus is prepared as an addition to salads, risottos and pasta, or with scrambled eggs and as a side dish to meat and fish.
Interesting fact is that one cup of asparagus contains only 43 calories, as most of it is water (93%), but its greatest value is in its richness with minerals and vitamins. It contains high amounts of potassium, phosphorus, sulfur, calcium and magnesium. Besides, in asparagus can be found trace elements of an iron, copper, zinc, fluorine and iodine. Asparagus is an excellent source of folate and vitamin C, and a good source of thiamine and vitamin B6.
Consumption of wild asparagus helps against chronic bronchitis, kidney stones, anemia, diabetes, removes jaundice and cleanses the kidneys and bladder.
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1. Day: Arrival in Zadar
Arrival in Zadar and check-in the accommodation. Sightseeing Zadar old town for 2 hours with an assistant that will take you to different locations where you will put on Virtual Reality glasses in order to experience never seen moments of Zadar’s history. Afterwards free time for exploring the city on your own. In the evening dinner in a restaurant where you will enjoy delicious Dalmatian meals prepared with fresh and authentic products.
Accommodation: hotel 4*
Meals: welcome dinner
Activity: 2-hour guided sightseeing, not physically demanding
2. Day: island of Pag and Cheese tasting
In the morning departure towards the island of Pag with a guide that is a driver at the same time. Pag is the fifth largest island in Croatia, an hour of driving from Zadar, connected to the mainland with a bridge. The island is characterized with unusual rocky and karst landscape and beautiful coves overlooking Velebit mountain. The guide will take you through amazing nature and explain how to pick wild asparagus. Afterwards, you will drive to Kolan, charming town where you will stop to take a tour through family owned cheese factory named Gligora. You will enjoy 25-min guided tour during which you will hear story about cheese from the island of Pag (Paški sir), the most awarded cheese in Croatia. You will get to know the production facility, visit the ageing room in the factory cellar, and at the end of the tour you will taste various types of cheese in the upper floor where is situated tasting room with a breath-taking view.
After tasting the cheese, you will head to the town of Pag, and before entering the town, you will stop at the lookout point with the most beautiful panoramic view of Pag.
After cheese tasting, you will head to the town of Pag, and there you will take a tour in town to get to know the most important sites such as the parish church of Mary’s Assumption, the Rector’s Palace, the Salt Magazine with a permanent exhibition of solar, Pag Lace Gallery (protected by UNESCO), and the former Old Town of Pag with Romanesque church of St. Mary, only a kilometer away from the city center. Before entering the city, you will stop at a lookout point with the most beautiful panoramic view of Pag. Lunch in a restaurant in Pag. Afterwards visit to the former town of Pag and its Romanesque church of St. Mary, situated only 1 km from the city.
Return to Zadar in the afternoon.
Accommodation: hotel 4*
Meals: breakfast in a hotel, cheese tasting
Activity: Full day tour to the island of Pag, not physically demanding
Transportatin: 136 km
Day 3: Searching for wild Asparagus, Horse riding and Cooking class
After breakfast at the hotel, visit one of the largest pine forests in the Mediterranean with a guide and search for wild asparagus. The forest is often called and Zadar’s green “lungs”, since it represents a green oasis, located not far from the city. After harvesting asparagus, you will visit a ranch where you will enjoy riding a horse with a professional instructor. Riding a horse through beautiful paths in the wilde nature of Zadar is one-of-a-kind experience and you will be able to learn many interesting facts about the horses themselves, Dalmatian vegetation and everything that nature has to offer around the ranch.
After that free time for lunch and an to explore the city on your own.
In the evening “cooking class” and dinner in a traditional tavern with the host who will show yout how to prepare delicious traditional meals with asparagus.
Later in the evening return to the hotel.
Accommodation: hotel 4*
Meals: breakfast in a hotel, “cooking class” dinner
Activity: not physically demanding, 2h walk in nature, 1 hour of riding a horse
Transportation: 20 km
Day 4: National park Krka and Roca “House of prosciutto”
After breakfast departure towards Krka National park. The guide will take you through the park and the tour will last 2 hours. You will follow circular path 1900 m long, along numerous wooden bridges that cross the travertine barriers. You will see the longest and the most popular waterfall – Skradinski buk. Do not miss to admire amazing panoramic view from the Imperial viewpoint, and pay special attention to the remains of Hydro Power Plant Krka, one of the first alternative current power plants in the world. Take a look at the ethno presentation and mills from the 19th century, which present the grinding of cereals and washing cloth, forging horseshoes, weaving bags, preparing food in the old kitchen, etc.
After tour in Krka National Park, departure to the family estate “Roca – prosciutto house”. On the estate you will see a pig farm, a vineyard with selected sorts of grapes, a fig trees, an olive grove, production facilities and an ethno room. You will taste gold-awarded prosciutto, homemade bread baked under the oven and other delicious dishes.
After lunch on the family farm, in the afternoon return to Zadar and in the evening cooking class where you will prepare delicious asparagus dishes with local chef.
Accommodation: hotel 4*
Meals: breakfast in a hotel, lunch on a rural estate, dinner and “Cooking class”
Activity: not physically demanding, easy 2-hour walking tour
Transportation: 160 km
Day 5: Vrana lake Nature Park
In the morning departure towards Vrana lake where you will spend a day with licensed guide. The lake is situated close to the sea and it is the largest natural lake in Croatia. It is rare to experience three completely different landscapes in one place: the sea coast with an scattered islands, the Mediterranean swamp with a rich ecosystem and the picturesque rural ambience of the Zadar hinterland. You will visit an ornithological reserve, walk on a wooden path along the lake and meet rare species of birds.
Then you will stop at Mašković Han, a former hostel and the westernmost monument of Islamic architecture in Europe. Take a tour of the museum, drink original Turkish coffee and try some oriental dishes, and at the end treat yourself with baklava.
Opposite of the han are the remains of the former Medieval town of Vrana, where once were kept symbols of rule of Croatian medieval kings. It was within the walls of the city Vrana that were situated Templars.
Next you will visit the Kamenjak lookout, which will reward you with amazing view of the lake, but also of the surrounding sea, and numerous islands of the Kornati archipelago.
Finally, you will visit Prosika where you will hear the story about complex architectural venture of digging a canal towards the sea in the 18th century to lower the water level of the lake. You will also see Babin škoj, once an island in the lake, but today a peninsula, and Modrave, the most compact olive grove in Croatia, surrounded by numerous dry stone walls. You will also learn more about the art of drywall construction, which is inscribed on the UNESCO list of cultural intangible heritage.
In the afternoon return to Zadar and free time for personal programs.
Accommodation: hotel 4*
Meals: breakfast in Maškovića han, lunch in Maškovića han restaurant
Aktivnosti: not physically demanding, walking tour in park
Transportation: 144 km
Day 6: Panoramic drive with a boat through Zadar archipelago
Half-day boat trip from Zadar to nearby islands of Zadar archipelago. You will be able to see Zadar and the Sea Organ from a different perspective, looking from the sea. You will enjoy a relaxing boat ride on a small traditional boat to the islands of Ugljan and Pašman, ideal place to relax without stress. The island of Ugljan is often mentioned as a “suburb” and garden of Zadar, and it got its name due to the lush vegetation and its vicinity to Zadar. The silence of a hidden corners of the island may be just what you need.
You will discover charming island towns with stone houses, while beautiful nature and atmosphere of the island wont leave you indifferent.
The guide will take you through the island and you will follow paths to the top of the hill, where you will discover enchanting view of the city of Zadar, sea and nearby islands.
During the walk, pay attention and you may spot wild asparagus to pick. While on the island, don’t miss to enjoy traditional dishes typical for this area, which are usually served in a Dalmatian tavern (konoba).
After the tour return to Zadar and free time for personal programs.
Accommodation: hotel 4*
Meals: breakfast in a hotel, lunch in a restaurant on the island
Activity: 6-hour boat tour, not physically demanding
Day 5: Zadar – departure
After breakfast check out from the hotel. Free time in the city until departure.
PRICE: From 1.845,00 EUR per person (13901.15 HRK)
Min. number of people: 2
INCLUDED IN THE PRICE:
- Accommodation in a hotel Almayer 4* in the old town – 7 nights with breakfast
- Sightseeing the city “Virtual Reality of Zadar’s history”
- Welcome dinner in a restaurant in the old town
- Permission to harvest wild asparagus
- Driver and transfers Zadar-Pag-Zadar, Zadar-NP Krka-Roca-Zadar and Zadar-Vransko jezero-Zadar
- Licensed local guide
- Gligora cheese factory – sightseeing and degustation
- Sightseeing of the town of Pag with a licensed guide
- Entrance tickets for Salt museum and Lace gallery in Pag
- Lunch in a restaurant in Pag
- Guided harvest of wild apsaragus in Zadar
- 1 hour of touristic horse riding
- Cooking class dinner
- Entrance tickets for Vrana lake Natrue Park
- Sightseeing of Vrana lake with a licensed guide
- Lunch in a restaurant Maškovića han in Vrana
- Entrance tickets for Krka waterfalls National park
- Sightseeing Krka waterfalls with licensed guide
- Lunch on a rural estate “Roca – Proscuitto house”
- Private half-day boat tour across Zadar archipelago
- Lunch in a restaurant on the island
- Costs of organization
NOT INCLUDED IN THE PRICE:
- Transport to the hotel
- Lunch or a dinner unless marked otherwise (for example during full-day trips)
- Tickets for additional attractions (museums, exhibitions etc.) unless marked otherwise
- Personal consumption
- Travel health insurance