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Balkan Delight

Operated By:
Tour Pace: Leisurely
Tour Style: First Class
13 Days from $2,508 per person

The astonishing natural beauty and charming medieval cities of the Balkans show few signs of the conflicts that have shaped this region. See the Sarajevo War Tunnels, the historic inner city of Split and 'Pearl of the Adriatic', Dubrovnik. Admire the longest and deepest fjord in Southern Europe and Plitvice's crystal clear lakes, plunging waterfalls and emerald green landscapes.

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  1. Board your overnight flight to Europe (not included).
  2. Embark on an off-the-beaten track discovery of the Balkans, a once troubled region and today a land of diverse cultures and traditions.  On arrival at Zagreb Airport transfers will operate at 11.30am and 2.30pm. Guests arriving later should make their own way to the hotel. Meet your Travel Director and fellow travelers this evening for a Welcome Reception and evening orientation drive.

    hotel:The Westin
  3. The paved squares and steep alleyways of Zagreb are ours to explore this morning as we join a Local Specialist to delve into the city's rich medieval and religious history. See the majestic Cathedral on Kaptol, the Archbishop's Palace, St. Mark's Church, with its vividly colored tiled roof, the Opera House, including a stroll around the 17th century Ban Jelačić Square. Spend the afternoon at leisure – enjoy panoramic city views from Strossmatre, pay tribute to Zagreb's patron saint at the Stone Gate or meander through the Old Town, twirling your Šestine umbrella as you ramble along its labyrinthine lanes. Perhaps join an Optional Experience to the birthplace of iconic leader Tito and enjoy a delicious meal of regional specialties with magnificent views of the Croatian countryside. 

  4. East meets west today as we travel south from Croatia into the dramatic landscapes of Bosnia and Herzegovina, to its fascinating capital city. Burrowing into the depths below Sarajevo, we join a Local Specialist for an insider tour of a Bosnian war tunnel that allowed food, war supplies and humanitarian aid to come into the city, and people to get out. Hear war-time tales of bravery and tragedy before spending the rest of the day exploring the city on your terms. Ramble along Copper Street seeking treasures or drink from the fountain of Sebilj to secure your return to Sarajevo. This evening, join your travel companions for dinner at your hotel. 

    meal(s):BB, D
  5. Sarajevo's rich religious and multicultural heritage that spans centuries has earned it the nickname, the Jerusalem of Europe, and it is reflected in its beautiful synagogues, mosques, and Orthodox and Catholic Churches. Join a Local Specialist for a guided walking tour of the city's old town, past the largest mosque in the Balkans, the Eternal Flame and the Sarajevo Roses that are dotted across the city as a stark reminder of the turmoil Sarajevo endured decades ago. 

    hotel:Radon Plaza
  6. We journey to the secluded coves and dramatic cliffs of the Dalmatian coast, that for centuries have attracted famous artists, actors and aristocrats. En route to Dubrovnik, the 'Pearl of the Adriatic', we stop to see the magnificent bridge at Mostar, named after the bridge keepers who in medieval times guarded the 'Stari Most' over the Neretva River. The 16th century bridge, was destroyed during the war and has been rebuilt using the same centuries-old traditions. Enjoy some free time to explore the town before continuing to the ancient city of Dubrovnik. This evening consider joining a private sunset cruise with dinner and enjoy the best views of this enchanting city from the water.  

  7. Meander through the marble streets of this stunning medieval city, joining an unforgettable Small Group Sightseeing walking tour of the main sights of Dubrovnik with a Local Specialist. Admire the Rector's Palace, Onofrio's Fountain and the Franciscan and Dominican monasteries before traveling to Osojnik to meet the Muhoberac family for a special Be My Guest traditional meal in the village their ancestors have lived in for over 500 years.

    meal(s):BB, BG
  8. Dazzling natural surrounds are ours to enjoy today as we travel to the Republic of Montenegro where we will meet a Local Specialist and head towards the mouth of the Bay of Kotor, the longest and deepest fjord in Southern Europe. Celebrate centuries of history in Kotor, with its Venetian palaces and medieval churches. We return to Dubrovnik this evening and dine tonight at our hotel.
    meal(s):BB, D
  9. We pass old fishing villages and modern resorts, arriving in the vibrant city of Split. Enjoy a city tour with a Local Specialist featuring the historic inner city, built around the Roman Emperor Diocletian's 4th century Palace. See Split's Renaissance and Gothic structures, Jupiter's Temple, the Peristyle and the Cathedral. Spend the evening on your own terms, or join an Optional Experience to indulge in traditional Dalmatian flavors.
  10. Delve into centuries of fascinating heritage on this day at leisure in Split. Consider a full-day Optional Experience to the beautiful island of Hvar, ascend the bell tower for magnificent views of the sprawling terracotta roofs that edge onto the Adriatic, or savor the city's delicious gastronomy at hidden cafés.
  11. This morning we visit the picturesque walled island of Trogir with a Local Specialist. The charming stone town is a veritable treasure trove for lovers of art, Renaissance and Baroque buildings, and Romanesque churches. We leave the coast and journey to the forested National Park of Plitvice where we will dine tonight at our hotel.
    meal(s):BB, D
  12. The tranquil turquoise, emerald and grey waters of Plitvice's multitude of lakes and waterfalls are explored today on a walking tour with a Local Specialist. Amble past the pristine natural landscapes, admiring the lush green vegetation and the abundant birdlife that find sanctuary in this UNESCO World Heritage. We return to Zagreb for a final Farewell Dinner together where we will reminisce over an enchanting Balkan exploration.
    meal(s):BB, FD
    hotel:The Westin
  13. Our time together comes to and end this morning after breakfast. Return transfers on the last travel day will arrive at Zagreb Airport at 7am and 11.30am.  Conditions apply.


30 Day Refund Guarantee

We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

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Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.
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28 Sep 18 10 Oct 18 checkmark $3,225$2,983pp Early PaymentPay by Feb 28 Request Quote Book Now

Price is per person and is based on two people sharing a moderate cabin on the cruise portion. Single rooms are available at a supplement. All port taxes are included in pricing. Cruise cabin upgrades are available. Please inquire for full pricing. 

Single Room Supplement: from $620 p.p.

Triple Room Discount: $100 p.p.

Airport transfers: On arrival at Zagreb Airport transfers will operate at 11:30 am and 2:30 pm. Guests arriving later should make their own
way to the hotel. Return transfers on the last travel day will arrive at Zagreb Airport at 7 am and 11:30 am.

Important Visa Information: Visas may be required for this trip. Please speak to your travel agent at the time of booking to assess your specific requirements. Visas cannot be issued at borders in Europe.

Gratuities: Option to pre-pay gratuities for Travel Director and Driver, $117 per person.

AARP Members are entitled to an exclusive Member Benefit Discount on all Grand European Travel vacations. Plus receive a free travel gift!  Call Toll Free: 1-866-847-3858 for details.

Frequent Travelers: Save an additional 5% off the price of the vacation.

  • Professional Travel Director Professional Travel Director
  • Sightseeing with Local Experts Sightseeing with Local Experts
  • VIP Access VIP Access
  • Expertly Selected Hotels Expertly Selected Hotels
  • Cultural Enrichment Cultural Enrichment
  • Hotel Tips Hotel Tips
  • Most Meals Most Meals
  • Personal Flight Options Personal Flight Options
  • WIFI on Coach and in Hotels WIFI on Coach and in Hotels

Meal Summary

11 nights, 11 hot buffet breakfasts, 6 dinners, On-trip transport, .

Included Highlights

Be My Guest

  • Experience life in rural Osojnik with the Muhoberac family who will show you how to prepare your meal on an open fire using only local ingredients and fresh aromatic Mediterranean herbs

Small Group Sightseeing

  • Enjoy a guided walking tour through the historic inner city of Dubrovnik with a group size of no more than 25 guests

Local Specialist

  • For included sightseeing in Zagreb, Sarajevo, Montenegro, Split, Trogir and Plitvice. Guided walking tour of Sarajevo War Tunnel

Hidden Treasure

  • Enjoy at least one surprise Hidden Treasure

Sightseeing Highlights

  • City tour in Zagreb, Sarajevo, Dubrovnik, Kotor, Split, Trogir
  • Orientation of Mostar
  • Visit the War Tunnels in Sarajevo, the charming town of Kotor in Montenegro, Diocletian's Palace in Split, Plitvice National Park
  • View the Cathedral and Archbishop's Palace in Zagreb, the Rector's Palace and city walls in Dubrovnik, the lakes and waterfalls of Plitvice National Park


Trip not yet reviewed
  • U.S. citizens traveling to Hungary, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Albania, Bulgaria, Croatia, and Romania must have a current passport valid for six months beyond the conclusion of their trip. You can find information on how to apply for a passport here, and how to renew a passport here. No visa is required for U.S. citizens entering these countries.

  • Each country on this itinerary uses a different currency. In Romania it is the Leu, in Bulgaria it is the Lev, in Serbia it is the Dinar, in Bosnia and Herzegovina it is the Convertible Mark, in Hungary it is the Forint, and in Croatia it is the Kuna.

    While it’s a good idea to bring some money for when you first arrive in Europe, you’ll usually find a better exchange rate in your destination.  The most convenient way to obtain cash is to use your ATM card at local banks in each country. We recommend you also bring a valid credit card for purchases while you are traveling.  It is important that you inform your financial institutions of your travel plans before you leave home so they don’t flag your purchases as potentially fraudulent charges.

  • Romanian dishes are delicious and rustic, and are heavily influenced by Turkish, Slavic and Germanic culinary traditions. Many meals begin with a soup course; so, if you’re adventurous, why not try the local soup specialty ciorba de burta – tripe soup.  The national dish is sarmale, cabbage rolls stuffed with spiced pork and rice. The country also has a growing wine industry, in particular near the Black Sea.

    Bulgaria is well-known for its fresh produce and quality dairy products.  The cuisine includes familiar Mediterranean flavors, including plenty of grilled meats, crisp salads and spiced soups.

    Serbian cuisine is hearty and generously spiced with an emphasis on barbeque – frequently pork, though beef and lamb are also common. Serbia is also known for kajmak, a mildly fermented cream often served with grilled meat. For dessert try palacinke, crepe-like pancakes filled with chocolate or honey.

    Croatian cuisine is hearty, fresh, and flavorful, and is a mix of local traditions and neighboring influences. Meals often begin with bread, cured meats and cheese.  Along the Dalmatian coast you’ll find a variety of seafood dishes and Mediterranean flavors like rosemary, oregano, sage, lemon, and olive oil. For an authentic coastal meal try octopus peka and scampi na buzaru (scampi cooked in garlic, tomato and white wine). Further inland you might like to try the rich Štrukli (baked cheese in pastry dough). Pizza and pasta dishes are also ubiquitous. For dessert, try palačinka, a kind of crêpe served with jam, chocolate sauce, and other decadent fillings. Croatia also produces high quality lagers and a selection of good wine.

    In Hungary you’ll find hearty specialties including goulash, winter salami, pork stew, and chicken paprikash.


  • We suggest packing a variety of lightweight clothing items that can be layered to save space in your suitcase and give you more options for how to dress. It’s important to bring comfortable walking shoes and a waterproof jacket. Keep in mind that your shoulders and knees should be covered while visiting religious sites.  For more helpful information please refer to our Packing Tips & Packing List.

  • When dining out it’s appropriate to leave up to 10 percent gratuity for good service at restaurants, if a service charge has not already been added to your bill.

    At the end of your guided vacation, it’s customary to offer your motor coach driver and Travel Director a gratuity.  We recommend €3.00 per person/per day for your driver and €5.00 per person/per day for your Travel Director.  Recommended gratuity for a Local Host and Local Specialist is 1-2 euros per person, paid at the conclusion of each guided visit.  A convenient option is to prepay your tips before your departure.

  • Baggage on our trips is restricted to one large suitcase per person with dimensions not exceeding 30x19x10 inches and a maximum weight of 50 pounds. You are also permitted one piece of hand luggage, which should be small enough to fit under your coach seat or on the small overhead shelf compartment. Please note that luggage with an adjustable handle and wheels will not fit in the overhead compartment of the coach. Hotel porterage is included in your vacation.

  • You will need to be comfortable on your feet, walking and standing for up to three hours in various weather conditions.  All of our vacations involve walking, often on cobblestone and uneven surfaces in historic city centers.  In order to get the most out of your vacation you need to be able to comfortably walk 1-3 miles unassisted in one day, be in good condition and be able to keep pace with the group. 

    If you need any medications, it is important that you bring enough to last you the whole trip and keep them in your carry-on bag while you travel.

  • We highly recommend our optional Travel Protection Plan, which allows you to cancel for any reason up to 24 hours before departure. The plan also includes trip interruption, baggage loss or delay, and medical and emergency assistance. Click here for a summary of coverage details, terms and conditions.

Optional Experiences are subject to change. Your Travel Director will supply you with a final list of Optional Experiences available on your trip. Optional Experiences cannot be booked online; they can be purchased during your trip through your Travel Director.


Kumrovec with Food and Drinks

Adult Price: €58.00

A scenic drive out of Zagreb with our Local Specialist brings us to the Croatian village of Kumrovec, birthplace of the late President of Yugoslavia, Marshall Tito. You’ll see his house, now a museum, and have time to explore the museum village. Later, share a meal of delicious regional specialities in a picturesque restaurant with magnificent views of the Croatian countryside.


Sights and Tastes of Sarajevo

Adult Price: €35.00

Discover two fascinating historical periods of Bosnia that continue to impact the identity of Sarajevo today. First we'll visit the location of the 1984 XIV Winter Olympics, including the war-torn bobsled run and the spectacular city panorama from Trebevic Mountain. We'll also be invited into a living museum from Ottoman times, learning stories of the country's rich culture and history over a refreshing drink and local delicacy.

Sarajevo Home Hosted Evening

Adult Price: €56.00

Enjoy a true insight into local culture as you’re invited into a Sarajevo local's home, to savour warm hospitality and tasty traditional cuisine. There’ll be no more than several guests with each family, ensuring a cosy and memorable evening.

Traditional Bosnian Dinner with Entertainment

Adult Price: €49.00

Enjoy a typical Bosnian evening in an authentic restaurant, famous for its local cuisine, accompanied with lively entertainment, to ensure an unforgettable final evening in Sarajevo.


Sunset Cruise And Dinner

Adult Price: €57.00

Our sunset cruise takes us along the spectacular Dalmatian coast to one of the secluded bays where we'll enjoy a delicious local dinner with drinks. To complete the evening, we'll cruise outside the old city walls and explore the beautiful illuminated city of Dubrovnik, before returning by coach to our hotel. (n.b. This optional is weather dependent and may not be available on all departures)

Panoramic Cavtat

Adult Price: €31.00

Journey along the coast for a relaxing trip to the picturesque village of Cavtat, arriving at the harbour on our own chartered boat. Enjoy a leisurely stroll with our Local Specialist in the medieval old town and take the opportunity to admire the yachts in the marina, visit the beach or walk up to the Racic Mausoleum.


Jewel of the Adriatic

Adult Price: €59.00

A memorable day trip to Hvar, one of the most beautiful islands in the Croatian archipelago. Embarking on a boat ride from Split harbour, we'll explore the historic Hvar Old Town on foot with our Local Specialist. You'll spend free time relaxing along one of the seafront restaurants or soaking up the stunning views from the Venetian hilltop fortress. At the end of the day, we'll sail back over the Adriatic on our return to Split.

Traditional Konoba Dinner

Adult Price: €51.00

If you want to truly experience Dalmatian cuisine, a dinner in a traditional stone basement 'konoba' is the best choice. You’ll select from a variety of seafood or meats accompanied by all you can drink Dalmatian wines and typical live music, which will add a traditional touch to your last night on the Croatian Adriatic coastline.


Rastoke Village and Barać Caves

Adult Price: €38.00

Journey with your Local Specialist through this picturesque region to the fairytale watermill village of Rastoke, with its cascading waterfalls and architectural heritage dating from the 17th century. We’ll also visit the Caves of Barać with its spectacular karstic features and valuable paleontological history.

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