Fables of Slovenia and Croatian Istria
Day 1: Apt Trieste-Gorizia
Arrival at Trieste airport and transfer to hotel in Gorizia. Overnight.
Day 2: Gorizia-Nova Gorica-Goriška Brda-Gorizia
Breakfast. Visit the of two border cities: Gorizia (Italy) and Nova Gorica (Slovenia). We will start discovering Gorizia's old town with the Victory Square, the Church of San Ignacio, San Antonio Square and Gorizia medieval castle. We will continue in Nova Gorica, visiting the Plaza shared between Slovenia and Italy, which was completed in 2004 with the entry of Slovenia into the EU. Our next stop will be the Franciscan monastery Kostanjevica, where the last of the French Bourbon kings are buried: Charles X and his family. Afternoon trip to the wine country Goriška Brda, where vines are mixed with fruit trees and many churches rest on the tops of the thousand hills. There we will visit the walled village of Šmartno and a lookout tower with a stunning view of the Alps and the Adriatic Sea at the same time. We will end the day at one of the wineries to taste one of the best wines. Overnight.
Day 3: Gorizia-Soča Valley-Lake Bled
Breakfast. We will drive upstream the picturesque valley of Soča river that surprises with its turquoise color and lush vegetation surrounding it. We will drive along a scenic road that crosses the Julian Alps and Triglav National Park heading to Lake Bled. In the afternoon a boat trip to the island of the lake, with its seventeenth century church. After ringing the wishing bell, we will climb to the castle to enjoy the view of the lake and its surroundings. Overnight.
Day 4: Lake Bled-Lake Bohinj-Ljubljana
Breakfast. In the morning we will stroll along the wonderful Vintgar canyon created by the Radovna river. Then we will go to the largest glacial lake in Slovenia: the Lake Bohinj. The area is part of the Triglav National Park, famous for crystal waters, remnants of virgin forests and rich flora and fauna. Drive to the Slovenian capital. Afternoon visit of Ljubljana. An exquisite blend of baroque and Art Nouveau styles, with the works of architect Jože Plečnik are the special ingredient of its charm. Do not miss cultural events and good nightlife. Overnight.
Day 5: Ljubljana-Postojna Caves-Predjama Castle-Poreč
Breakfast. Departure to visit the famous Postojna Caves, recognized as one of the largest and most beautiful in the world. A train ride combined with a walk will allow us to observe the karst phenomena such as stalactites and stalagmites. Afterward, stop at the fairytale castle Predjama. In the afternoon we will continue to the Istrian Peninsula. We will cross the border with Croatia and end the day in the picturesque town Poreč. Overnight.
Day 6: Poreč-Pula-Rovinj-Poreč
After breakfast we will go to the discovery of Istria. Pula was in ancient times an important Port of the Roman Empire. We will visit one of the six remaining Roman amphitheatres in the world and the old town that represents an interesting blend of Roman, Venetian and Art Nouveau styles. In the afternoon drive to Rovinj, a town that invites to stroll between galleries and artisan shops. The image of the Istrian town is completed with a church dedicated to St. Euphemia, located on top of Rovinj. Back to Poreč. Overnight.
Day 7: Poreč-Grožnjan-Piran-Portorož
Breakfast. Visit of the Euphrasian Basilica in Poreč that conceals Byzantine mosaics depicting scenes and characters from the Bible. The basilica and all architectural treasures belong to the World Heritage (Unesco). Then we will go to the interior of the peninsula, passing through typical Istrian villages, getting close to the border with Slovenia. It is there where truffles grow . Stop in Grožnjan, an ancient village that today works as a setting for numerous galleries and shops that found place in old stone houses. Here we will taste different truffle products. In the afternoon, continue to Piran (Slovenia), the birthplace of the Baroque composer Giuseppe Tartini. The main square is named after him and it is surrounded by Venetian and Austro-Hungarian buildings, among which the "Benecanka" house with a beautiful legend behind its construction. A walk through the narrow streets will take us to the church of St. George which dominates the town. Overnight in Portorož.
Day 8: Portorož-Apt Trieste
After breakfast, free time until transfer to airport Trieste. A shopping in Trieste can be organized depending of the flight time. End of our services.