Motovun Film Festival
Among thousands of festivals in the world, it is not always easy to achieve uniqueness. Thanks to its venue, Motovun Film Festival is the festival with the most beautiful view in the world!
The first leg of your Croatian adventure begins in the hilltop fort 885 feet (270m) above sea level, on the hill dominating the wonderful Mirna river valley, in a town called Motovun. It is probably the most beautiful medieval town in Istria, if not in the world. In its vicinity, there is an ancient Motovun forest rich with truffles, mushrooms of sublime taste, and on the slopes of grapes where famous Istrian wines are grown.
Here we will be staying in the nearby village of Livade, 6 miles (10km) away from Motovun in Istarske Toplice, famous for its special sulphur rich thermal water. In addition to the special mineral water, particular benefits are offered by the mild climate and untouched nature of this region. There are many marked routes for hiking, climbing and bike riding. On the top of the huge rock is the ruin of the old church of St. Stephen (Sveti Stjepan) with the magnificent view of the valley of the river Mirna and famous forests of Motovun with its wood known also for building Venice. A few miles away is a unique middle-age village, Grožnjan, and the smallest city in the world – Hum. The nearest villages by the sea are Umag and Poreč, the infamous Croatian summer resorts. This leg of the tour is designed to meet your needs and can be customized accordingly!
Included in your stay in Livade is daily breakfast and dinner as well as transfers to the Film Festival throughout the day.
Optional supplements include the following and can be arranged upon request:
• Transfer from Airport to Motovun (we recommend Venice Airport, just a short drive away and direct flights from several US cities)
• Film Festival individual tickets or sets (Morning / Afternoon / Evening viewings)
• Sightseeing excursions to nearby villages and Istrian coastal towns
• Activity based excursions
• Wellness and Spa Services – 50% discount on tickets to Sauna World (5 types: Infrared sauna, Chromo-therapy, Finnish sauna, Turkish bath and aromatic steam-sauna), fitness and relax room, Wellness Center indoor swimming pool and outdoor thermal-and-mineral-water swimming pool.
Day 6: Motovun – Zagreb
Meet your Tour Director after breakfast and head towards the big city of Zagreb where we will check in at the hotel and meet our local guide who will take us on a tour of Zagreb, the Capital and economic center of Croatia. You will see the wonders of the old fortified Upper Town, Cathedral of St. Stephen, the famous St. Mark’s church with its multicolored roof and the bustling town market ‘Dolac’. We will then head back to the hotel for you to freshen up prior to heading to a welcome dinner at a traditional Croatian restaurant that offers a fine collection of wines and traditional dishes using seasonal ingredients from the Dolac market. Overnight in Zagreb (B, D)
DAY 7: Zagreb – Plitvice Lakes National Park – Zadar
Following breakfast, we will depart Zagreb and head towards the indescribable UNESCO World Heritage site, Plitvice National Park. The park is 29.6 hectares with 16 lakes joined by waterfalls that cascade from one level to another. As you are guided throughout the park or wandering at your own pace, traversing along the wooden paths that lead down to breathtaking waterfalls and exquisite turquoise lakes, you will be memorized by its natural beauty. We will then take a boat ride on the largest lake in Plitvice where you will take in the serenity and feel like you have escaped from the stress of everyday life. Lunch today will be at a local restaurant specializing in traditional Croatian cuisine. After a wonderful afternoon taking in Croatia’s natural wonder, we will head towards Zadar. Overnight in Zadar. (B, L)
DAY 8: Zadar – Split
Zadar (previously European Best Destination winner) is the town that Alfred Hitchcock described as having one of the most beautiful sunsets in the world. The old town center is built inside the old city walls with marble streets and a blend of modern and ancient architecture. Explore the famous St. Donatus church, the ancient Roman forum and the Sea Organs (a contemporary city attraction – haunting sounds made by the sea).
Following Zadar, we will head further down the coast to Croatia’s second largest city, Split. In Split, we will hear the local myths and legends about the Roman Emperor Diocletian who decided to spend his last days in the sunny harbor of Asphalatos (Split). Here he built the amazing Diocletian Palace, which is now another UNESCO World Heritage site. Overnight in Split. (B)
DAY 8: Split – Dubrovnik
After breakfast and a must have coffee on “Splitska Riva” (city promenade), we will head towards Dubrovnik. Dubrovnik is known as the “Pearl of the Adriatic” and is a UNESCO World Heritage site. Today we will wander along the famous main street, Stradun, and visit the Franciscan monastery, the beautiful Renaissance Sponza Palace and many more beautiful sites including the old city. The most impressive and intriguing site are the fortified city walls, which are 1.2 miles (2km) long and 72 feet (22m) high. The old city is surrounded by several fortresses and towers which protected the city in days gone by. This romantic city leaves none indifferent and always wanting to return. Overnight in Dubrovnik. (B, D)
DAY 9: Dubrovnik
The tour concludes after breakfast. There will be an opportunity for last minute shopping or simply hang out with your new friends for the last time. (B)