Jewels of the Adriatic

A 12-Day Tour to Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, and Montenegro
With: Fr. Dan Shea
September 28 - October 9, 2020

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Day 1. Monday, September 28: Transatlantic flight to Ljubljana


Day 2. Tuesday, September 29: Ljubljana

Welcome to Slovenia! Upon arrival, enjoy a panoramic view of Ljubljana, Slovenia’s capital and largest city, while you transfer to your hotel for a welcome dinner and overnight. (WD)


Day 3. Wednesday, September 30: Ljubljana

Begin the day with a river cruise on the Ljubljanica Kanal. The canal flows through the city center, is dotted by pedestrian bridges and lined with outdoors cafes. Afterwards, walk through the Old Town and visit St. Nicholas Cathedral. Originally a Gothic church, it was replaced by a Baroque building in the 18th century. Then, visit the Ljubljana Castle perched atop a coned-shaped hill. Dating back to the 11th century, in 1355 the castle became the property of the Habsburg family, then a refuge for the poor and a prison. Rest of the day at leisure. (BB)


Day 4. Thursday, October 1: Ljubljana: Excursion to Bled

Enjoy an excursion to Lake Bled and visit Bled Island. The Church of the Assumption occupies the island and has been a sacred site for centuries. Continue to Bled Castle, the 11th-century stronghold of the Bishops of Brixen, who ruled the area until 1803. It now houses a museum detailing the history of the castle. On your return, stop at Brezje to visit Slovenia’s National Marian Shrine, the Basilica of St. Mary Help of Christians, which houses a miraculous painting of Mary Help of Christians. Dinner and overnight in Ljubljana. (BB, D)


Day 5. Friday, October 2: Ljubljana – Rijeka – Zadar

Leave Slovenia and cross into Croatia. Stop at Rijeka, one of Croatia’s main ports. There, above Trsat Hill, stands the Shrine of Our Lady of Trsat. The church and Franciscan monastery were built in 1453 on the site where the House of Loreto used to stand before being transported to Italy. Afterwards, enjoy lunch on your own in Rijeka’s downtown and browse the shops before continuing to the port of Zadar for dinner and overnight. (BB, D)


Day 6. Saturday, October 3: Zadar – Sibenik  – Split

Zadar is a city where palaces and churches were built throughout the centuries. Your morning sightseeing includes a visit to the Cathedral of St. Anastasia, where the relics of St. Anastasia, a 4th-century martyr, are venerated. Founded by the Byzantines in the 9th century, it was rebuilt in the Romanesque style in the 12th-13th centuries. Enjoy some free time to browse Zadar’s downtown. On your way to Split, stop at Sibenik for a visit to Krka National Park. Take a boat ride to the magnificent waterfall and walk a circular trail (1.2 miles) crossing bridges and learning about this fantastic travel site. Arrive in Split for dinner and overnight. (BB, D)


Day 7. Sunday, October 4: Split

Today, enjoy a day sightseeing in Split. Visit the impressive 4th-century Palace of Diocletian, where Diocletian, Roman emperor, retired from public life. Continue to the Cathedral of St. Dominus. Originally Diocletian’s mausoleum, the cathedral was consecrated in the 7th century. Also visit its museum, which includes objects in gold and silver, manuscripts, medieval icons and vestments. Rest of the day is free with independent dinner. (BB)


Day 8. Monday, October 5: Split – Medjugorje

Depart today towards Medjugorje, located in Bosnia & Herzegovina; it is the site of the 1981 Marian Apparitions. Visit the Apparition Hill, where six children witnessed the apparitions of the Blessed Virgin Mary. Climb Cross Mountain with a 30-foot-high cross, and pray the Stations of the Cross as you go up. This evening you may choose to participate in the processions and rosary. Dinner and overnight in Medjugorje. (BB, D)


Day 9. Tuesday, October 6: Medjugorje – Mostar – Dubrovnik

Spend the morning in Medjugorje or opt to travel to Mostar to visit its historic Old Town and its Stari Most, or “Old Bridge”, built by the Ottomans in the 16th century and which exemplifies typical Islamic architecture and fine engineering. Afterwards, cross back into Croatia and arrive in the coastal city of Dubrovnik, to enjoy a panoramic view of this magnificent walled city from atop. Before dinner, walk part of the walls surrounding one of the best kept medieval cities in the world. Dinner and overnight in Dubrovnik. (BB, D)


Day 10. Wednesday, October 7: Dubrovnik

Enjoy a morning guided walking tour of the old downtown beginning with a visit to the Church of St. Blaise, dedicated to the patron saint of Dubrovnik. Then, visit the Cathedral and its Treasury, built after the earthquake of 1667. Its Treasury is famous for its collection of about 200 reliquaries. One includes the arm of St. Blaise and another a fragment of the Holy Cross. The rest of the day is free. You may visit the Dominican Monastery, which houses a museum containing an extraordinary collection of paintings, as well as precious reliquaries and objects of gold and silver. Independent dinner tonight. (BB)


Day 11. Thursday, October 8: Dubrovnik: Excursion to Kotor

Journey to Montenegro, and stop in Perast, a tiny village nestled on the edge of Kotor Bay and renowned to be one of the most beautiful places in the country. Wander through the village with cobblestoned streets and capture the essence of its medieval atmosphere. From Perast, after a short drive, arrive to Kotor, which embodies the magical spirit of the Venetian empire, which ruled over Kotor for nearly 400 years. Your visit includes a walking tour of Kotor’s historical old town. Time to explore Kotor on your own before returning to Dubrovnik for a farewell dinner with your companions to celebrate the end of a magnificent journey through Slovenia and Dalmatia. (BB, FD)


Day 12. Friday, October 9: Homebound flight

Transfer to Dubrovnik airport to take your flight back to the USA.


Passengers who purchase the trip with air from Helena:

Day 12. Friday, October 9: Flight Dubrovnik-Istanbul-Chicago

Arrive in Chicago in the afternoon and spend an overnight. (Meals and hotel accommodations in Chicago are not included.)


Day 13. Saturday, October 10: Flight Chicago-Helena

Take an afternoon flight Chicago-Salt Lake City-Helena. (Meals and fees for checked baggage are not included.)


Buffet Breakfast (BB); Dinner (D); Welcome Dinner (WD); Farewell Dinner (FD)


* In case of unforeseen events, this itinerary is subject to change.

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For questions or more trip information, please contact Catholic Heritage Tours.

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