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14-Night Montenegro & Dalmatian Coast Guided Walking Holiday

the view over Kotor and its bay and the old fortress
Duration: 14 nights
Type: European Centre Based
Walking Grade: 2 & 3
from £1,999pp with flights

Two fantastic holiday destinations in one holiday! Explore Montenegro: Montenegro is one of the smallest and newest Balkan countries. Walk in its beautiful Lovćen National Park, pass through traditional villages and enjoy a boat ride on Lake Skadar, one of the largest lakes in Europe. It has 40 different kinds of fish and 270 bird species! Explore the Dalmatian Coast: Walk to the neighbouring resorts of Brela and Makarska, and on the balcony path beneath the Biokovo Mountains, all with great sea views. Enjoy a boat trip to the stunning island of Brač with its amazing beaches and sleepy villages, and visit the impressive Cetina Gorge.

Holiday Highlights

Montenegro 

  • Exceptional walking and cultural discovery in Montenegro, the ‘Black Pearl’ of the Balkans
  • Discover stunning Kotor Bay and the Venetian palaces of Kotor’s old town
  • Enjoy wonderful panoramas of bays, mountains and the Adriatic from the Lovćen National Park
  • Stay in Petrovac, a charming seaside town, renowned for its beautiful bay surrounded by dramatic mountains

Dalmatian Coast

  • Walk the Cetina Gorge, then taking a boat trip to the town of Omiš
  • Stop at charming coastal resorts for a dip in the turquoise waters of the Adriatic 
  • Evening boat ride to Makarska to enjoy the town lit up at night
  • Outstanding waterfront hotel, right on the beach at Baška Voda
  • Free day opportunities to visit the ancient city of Split and the medieval town of Trogir

What’s included

  • A full programme of guided walks with 2 options every walking day
  • All transport to and from the walks
  • The services of experienced HF Holidays' leaders
  • "With flight" holidays include return flights from the UK and hotel transfers
  • 14 nights' accommodation in en-suite rooms
  • Transport between the two destinations
  • Half Board - continental breakfast and evening meal

Trip Notes

Trip notes are detailed, downloadable PDFs for each holiday.

Download Trip Notes

On the slopes of the mountains above the coastal highway are numerous small communities, Orthodox monasteries and small farms with summer grazing called katuns. These introductory walks both use panoramic paths close to Petrovac, visit highly decorated churches, and are a great introduction to the area.

Option 1 - Lučice Beach and Gradište Monastery

Distance: 4 miles (6½km)

Total ascent: 700 feet (210m)

In summary: Walking from the hotel we pass the neighbouring picturesque Lučice beach and ascend to historic Gradište monastery, perched on a rocky outcrop. After a pleasant shaded traverse, we descend to a café at Buljarica beach for lunch before returning along the coast to our hotel.

Highlight: The attractive cove of Lučice.

 

Option 2 - An Alpine Katun and St Spiridon’s Chapel

Distance: 7 miles (11km)

Total ascent: 700 feet (210m)

Total descent: 2,300 feet (690m)

In summary: An undulating path through trees and flowers along the top of the coastal mountain range takes us to the tiny chapel at Ogradenica for lunch. A rocky descent follows across the flanks of the mountains to a welcoming café with wonderful coastal views to Sveti Stefan, a perfect end to our first day.

Highlight: Superb views of the coast.


The dramatic Bay of Kotor is flanked to the west by the wooded Tivat Peninsula culminating in Vrmac Hill. Among the trees lie the ruined 12th century Slav settlement of Pasiglav and the bucolic 14th century village of Gornja Lastva. Both walks enjoy a delightful path along the wooded slopes of Vrmac, and truly scenic views of the bay, often referred to as Europe’s southernmost fjord, although it is actually a ria. Across the bay, the medieval towns of Perast and Kotor offer a taste of a possible excursion on the free day.

Option 1 - Gornja Lastva to Muo

Distance: 7 miles (11km)

Total ascent: 1,300 feet (390m)

Total descent: 2,200 feet (660m)

In summary: From Gornja Lastva we ascend through trees past the ruins of Pasiglav and continue steadily to the Tivat ridge with excellent views of Croatia and Serbia. An extraordinary former military road zigzags steadily down to the shore of Kotor Bay with views of the old town hemmed in by mountains.

Highlight: the incredible view of Kotor Bay laid out below you.

Option 2 - Gornja Lastva to Muo above the Bay of Kotor

Distance: 9 miles (14½km)

Total ascent: 2,000 feet (600m)

In summary: We ascend on a steep footpath to the Church of Sveti Vid with views to the Adriatic, Croatia and Serbia, before a long steady ascent brings us to the Tivat ridge summit for lunch with more superb views. We follow the ridge to join the Franz Josef Steig and descend the path taken by the easier group to a bayside café.

Highlight: Look out for fabulous views on this walk.

 


Towering over the Bay of Kotor and dominating the northwest of Montenegro are the two summits of Lovcen  the out-of-bounds Stirovnik at 1,749m and Jezerski Vrh, crowned with the Mausoleum of Petar II at 1,657m – the target for today’s harder walk. Both walks finish at Krstac on the boundary of the national park and at the head of one of the most spectacular roads in Europe. Both these walks, at over 4,000ft, may be affected by early season snow.

Option 1 - Cetinje and the Lovćen National Park

Distance: 6 miles (9½km)

Total ascent: 700 feet (210m)

Total descent: 1,800 feet (540m) 

In summary: After a brief exploration of the former imperial capital of Cetinje we start our walk at Ivanova Korita in Lovcen National Park. A well made former military road leads us past Alpine communities and descends with stunning views over the Bay of Kotor to a welcoming café at Krstac.

Highlight: The local guide bringing Cetinje to life.

Option 2 - Lovćen and the Njegoš Mausoleum

Distance: 7 miles (11km)

Total ascent: 1,600 feet (480m)

Total descent: 2,400 feet (720m)

In summary: High within the Park, we ascend through trees to the summit ridge and viewpoint of Mt Lovćen. Descending steadily on a rough track we rejoin the easier group and descend to Kotor Bay and the hotel.

Highlight: Ascend a mountain summit and visit the mausoleum of Petar II Petrovic Njegos.

 


Each week there is a free day when no guided walks are offered. This is an ideal opportunity to relax around the hotel, walk independently or visit local places of interest. Some options for your free day may include:

Perast and Kotor: If there is sufficient interest your leaders will organise a coach to the picturesque old town of Perast, nestling at the foot of the mountains standing between the two bays of the inner Boka and opposite the Verige Channel, for an opportunity to explore the town and the nearby island of Our Lady of the Rock. The coach will then drive back along the bay to Kotor, whose old city is surrounded by walls that rise spectacularly to the crest of a rocky hillside. Old Kotor is a densely packed triangle of twisting streets, tiny squares, cafés and churches, and is a delight to just wander through and explore.

Budva: Nestling to the west of the lively holiday resort of Budva and to the north of Petrovac, Budva Stari Grad, or Old Town, has existed since before the 5th century BC. When the Roman Empire was divided, the border between it and Byzantium was drawn through Budva. The town has been meticulously restored after extensive damage by an earthquake in 1979. There are many squares, museums, narrow streets and a busy harbour to explore.

Beaches: Within easy walking distance south of Petrovac is the quiet cove of Lučice, perfect for swimming. Café facilities are available here. A little further on is the wide expanse of reedbacked Buljarica beach.

There is an excellent pool at the hotel. Details of other seasonal excursions are available from your leaders and the hotel reception desk.

For information on Montenegro please visit www.visitmontenegro.com


Southeast of Petrovac towards the border with Albania, the Rumija range of mountains separates the Adriatic from Lake Skadar. This is a landscape where mosques sit alongside Orthodox churches and hillside farmers scratch a living. We pass the industrialised sprawl of Bar, the terminal on the Adriatic for the railway from Podgorica, to start our walks near Loška.

Option 1 - Villages below Loška and Stari Bar

Distance: 7 miles (11km)

Total ascent: 1,000 feet (300m)

Total descent: 2,100 feet (630m)

In summary: Our path undulates past prosperous farming communities before a steep track leading to a lovely lunch spot at Loška. Passing flower strewn meadows minor roads bring us back to the coach for transport to the fascinating ruins of Stari Bar.

Highlight: Stari Bar is an historic, partially ruined town.

Option 2 - Loška

Distance: 5 miles (8km)

Total ascent: 2,200 feet (660m)

In summary: Starting far inland at the isolated Muslim community of Lunje we walk the first stage of the high level mountain path through myriad flowers to the summit of Loška to enjoy lunch with far reaching views to the Adriatic and Albania. Returning to Lunje we are taken to the old town of Bar for refreshments before continuing to the hotel.

Highlight: Impressive views of the Adriatic and Albania.


Between Petrovac and the capital to the east, Podgorica, lies the National Park of Lake Skadar, a huge wildlife reserve shared between Montenegro and Albania to the south. Surrounded on three sides by Montenegrin mountains, Skadar is one of the largest lakes in Europe with 40 different kinds of fish and 270 bird species. Both walks will explore this beautiful area and have the opportunity to enjoy a boat ride back to Virpazar before the coach journey to our hotel.

Option 1 - Poseljani and Lake Skadar

Distance: 3 miles (5km)

Total ascent: 400 feet (120m)

In summary: On this walk we explore almost deserted Poseljani down to the lake shore before following the river on a stony path passing waterfalls to rejoin the coach for lunch at the historic old bridge café in Rijeka Crnojevica. We then take our scenic boat ride down the river and across Lake Skadar.

Highlight: The boat trip on Lake Skadar with sightings of numerous birds almost certainly including the rare Dalmatian pelican.

Option 2 - Poseljani, Rijeka Crnojevića & Lake Skadar

Distance: 6 miles (9½km)

Total ascent: 1,400 feet (420m)

In summary: After a brief exploration of Poseljani we ascend steeply on a little walked packhorse route to a high open space for lunch, passing old farmsteads as we descend through trees to rejoin the easier group. Our boat ride takes us to the lakeside community of Virpazar with all facilities prior to our return to the hotel.

Highlight: Taking the boat trip on Lake Skadra, watching out for a variety of fauna.


Transfers between hotels are via Dubrivnik airport.

Welcome to Hotel Bacchus. Unpack and settle in.


Today our walks start and finish at the hotel to enjoy the foothills of the Biokovo Mountains which rise above the village. Both groups will descend to the coast at the neighbouring resort of Brela. We will then follow the coastline on a promenade through small beach resorts with the opportunity to pause for a drink or swim on our way back to Baška Voda.

Option 1 - Villages, Views and Promenade

Distance: 6 miles (9½ km)

Total ascent: 1,100 feet (330m)

In summary: We explore the mainly abandoned Dalmatian village of Topici before continuing northwest, parallel to the coast, walking through small tourist resorts en route back to Baška Voda. On wide paths with wonderful views this is a popular walk with numerous places to stop after lunch for a swim in the brilliantly clear waters of the Adriatic.

Highlight: Take a dip in the crystal clear waters of the Adriatic.

 

Option 2 - Napoleon’s Road, High Col and Promenade

Distance: 10 miles (16km)

Total ascent: 1,900 feet (570m)

In summary: The harder walk will ascend to a high mountain col. Using a part of the extraordinary Napoleon’s Old Road we ascend to one of the best lunch spot of the week with views in every direction. A stony descent takes us to the coastal promenade for a delightful return to our hotel.

Highlight: The stunning Napolean's Road

 


The island of Brač lies approximately four miles offshore from the mainland, and is about the same size as the Isle of Wight. The island’s coastline has a series of attractive harbour villages, two of which will be visited on our walks. We travel to Brač by boat from Baška Voda harbour. We will arrive at Sumartin harbour and from here walk to a secluded cove and through olive groves to the equally attractive harbour at Povlja. Here our boat will be waiting for the return trip.

Option 1 - Island coast and harbour villages

Distance: 7 miles (11km)

Total ascent: 400 feet (120m)

In summary: After time to explore or enjoy a relaxed morning coffee in Sumartin, we ascend out of the town and enjoy a wide track above the east coast of the island with stunning views across to the mountains on the mainland. At the hamlet of Rasotica we see how the local inhabitants collect water where there are no natural springs, before a possible swim in the nearby picturesque cove. A good track leads us to lunch in the shade of an olive grove before walking to the north coast of the island with its basilica and harbour.

Highlight: The islands beautiful coastline with it's attractive harbour villages.

 

Option 2 - Island coast, terraces and harbour village

Distance: 9 miles (13km)

Total ascent: 800 feet (240m)

In summary: This coast to coast walk follows the route of the easier group but takes on an additional descent to a second picturesque cove for our picnic lunch and the return from the delightful quiet coastal village of Povlja.

Highlight: The boat journey from Baška Voda harbour to Brač 

 


Both walks will start at the village of Makar, which sits on the hillside not far from Makarska, commanding superb views of the coast below, making their way via differing routes to Tučepi.

Option 1 - Botanical gardens, villages and Tučepi

Distance: 6 miles (9½km)

Total ascent: 500 feet (150m)

Total descent: 1,200 feet (360m)

In summary: On mostly good paths, this gentle paced walk reveals the contrasts between the traditional life at the base of the Biokovo range and the welcoming facilities of an attractive coastal resort. We visit old churches, small villages and botanical gardens along the way.

Highlight: Take a seat in the botanical gardens and admire the view out to the islands of Brač and Hvar.

 

Option 2 - Into the Biokovo Mountains

Distance: 7 miles (11km) 

Total ascent: 2,200 feet (660m)

In summary: The most challenging walk of the week ascends on a remarkably constructed former mule track before contouring in welcome shade high above the coast. A slightly rougher descent takes us to a traditional café.

Highlight: An exhilarating mountain day with spectacular views.

 


Each week there is a free day when no guided walks are offered. This is an ideal opportunity to relax around the hotel, walk independently or visit local places of interest. Some options for your free day may include:

Makarska: A relaxing option is to walk along the coast to Makarska. This is a generally straightforward walk, taking around two hours, with plenty of opportunities for swimming along the way. In Makarska you may want to have lunch in one of the waterfront cafés, before returning to Baška Voda on one of the regular local buses.

Split: Split is the capital of the region and is located 50km northwest of Baška Voda. The city can be reached by local bus, and the initial approach to the city through rows of dilapidated apartment blocks appears unpromising. At its heart, however, is an enthralling old town of narrow streets and ancient buildings. The principal sights are the cathedral of St Domnius and the remains of Diocletian’s Palace with its spectacular gates, museum and temple.

Trogir: A little further away is the equally impressive city of Trogir. Built on an island, this beautiful walled city has a maze of narrow medieval streets, elegant waterfront cafés, a wide waterfront promenade and dramatic fortifications. The city is also the best example of Croatian cultural life on the Dalmatian coast. The magnificent cathedral inspired UNESCO to name the town a World Heritage Site in 1997.

The Krka National Park: The Krka River and its wonderful waterfalls define the landscape of Šibenik-Knin country and are the focus of the Krka National Park. The Krka waterfalls are a Karstic phenomenon. A popular option is to combine a visit to Trogir with the spectacular waterfalls in the Krka National Park, and your leaders will organise this if there is sufficient interest.

For information on Baška Voda please visit www baskavoda.h


Today both options enjoy coastal walks along the beautiful Adriatic coast.

Option 1 - Tučepi to Makarska

Distance: 4 miles (6½km)

Total ascent: 400 feet (120m)

In summary: Starting at the village of Tucepi, our walk undulates along the coastal paths, with views up to the Biokovo mountains and across the Adriatic to the island of Brac.

Highlight: Explore the bustling harbour of Makarska.

 

Option 2 - Baška Voda to Makarska

Distance: 6 miles (9½km)

Total ascent: 200 feet (60m)

In summary: This option walks from the hotel along the gentle coastal path, with stunning views across the Adriatic. Our walk finishes in the seaside town of Makarska.

Highlight: Superb views throughout along the coast and across to the islands. 

 


The Cetina Gorge is an impressive natural feature that has been carved through the limestone of the Biokovo Mountains. We start inland at the village of Kostanje, behind the coastal mountain range.

Option 1 - In to the Gorge

Distance: 7 miles (11km)

Total ascent: 800 feet (240m)

In summary: Enjoying contrasting scenery to the coastal region, an easy morning through quiet villages takes us to a dramatic lunch spot with views to the Cetina River below. From here we follow a well-graded path through trees leading us to our boats which take us to a historic mill for refreshment, and through the gorge to Omiš on the coast.

Highlight: The delightful boat journey through the gorge to the coastal town of Omiš.

 

Option 2 - Above the Cetina Gorge

Distance: 8 miles (13km)

Total ascent: 900ft (270m)

In summary: We will take an alternative route to the easier route to visit a church for lunch with distant views high above the morning’s path, and then rejoin the path down to and into the gorge.

Highlight: Marvel at the Cetina Gorge; an impressive natural feature that has been carved through the limestone of the Biokovo Mountains.

 


We hope to see you again soon.


Montenegro Itinerary Map
Baska Voda Itinerary Map

Hotel Palas - Montenegro

The 4-star Hotel Palas in the resort of Petrovac; a coastal town with sandy beaches and hidden coves, is located on the promenade with attractive terraces and gardens planted with orange and olive trees.  It is within easy walking distance of the shops and behind the hotel is the towering Pastrovici Mountains.  The hotel owns part of the sandy Lucice beach and their guests enjoy private seating.  WiFi is available throughout the hotel.

Hotel Villa Bacchus - Dalmatian Coast

The 4-star Hotel Bacchus is located on the seafront, overlooking the crystal-clear Adriatic Sea and the island of Brač. There is a peaceful pebble beach in front of the hotel where sun loungers and beach towels can be hired.  Built in 2003, Hotel Villa Bacchus is owned by the Divic family, and guest have rated the accommodation, meals and service very highly. Winner of three HF Hotel Awards in 2018 based on guest feedback.  

What to Bring

Essential Equipment

To enjoy walking/hiking comfortably and safely, footwear, clothing and equipment needs to be suitable for the conditions. Safety and comfort are our priorities, so our advice is to come prepared for all eventualities.

  • Footwear with a good grip on the sole (e.g.Vibram sole) is the key to avoiding accidents.
  • Walking/hiking boots providing ankle support and good grip are recommended (ideally worn in), and specialist walking socks to avoid blisters.
  • Several layers of clothing, which can be added or removed, are better than a single layer (include spares).
  • Fabrics (lightweight and fast drying) designed for the outdoors are recommended.
  • Waterproof jacket and waterproof over trousers.
  • Warm hat and gloves. Gaiters are an optional but useful extra.
  • Denim jeans and capes are not suitable on any walks.
  • Rucksack with a waterproof liner.
  • Thermos flask for hot drink.
  • Water bottle (at least 2 litre).
  • Spare high-energy food such as a chocolate bar.
  • Small torch.
  • First aid kit – your leader’s first aid kit doesn’t contain any medication or blister kits (such as Compeed).
  • Sun hat and sunglasses
  • Sun cream.

Optional Equipment

  • Walking poles are useful, particularly for descents.
  • Insect repellent.
  • Sunglasses.
  • Camera.

Guest Reviews

All holidays are subject to availability and prices are subject to change.
Non-member associate fee: £10 per person.

These departure dates can be booked with flights or as land only holiday options. All packages that include flights are ATOL protected. Advertised flight prices are based on UK flights departing from London. Regional departures and/or connections to London, if available, can be requested. Cabin upgrades may also be available on request.

Date (Start - End) Version Price Status Trip Notes Book
2020
18 Apr - 02 May 2020 Itinerary £1,999 Available Book Now
25 Apr - 09 May 2020 Itinerary £1,999 Available Book Now
02 May - 16 May 2020 Itinerary £2,049 Available Book Now
16 May - 30 May 2020 Itinerary £2,049 Unavailable
19 Sep - 03 Oct 2020 Itinerary £2,099 Available Book Now
03 Oct - 17 Oct 2020 Itinerary £2,049 Available Book Now
10 Oct - 24 Oct 2020 Itinerary £2,049 Available Book Now
Date (Start - End) Version Price Status Trip Notes Book
2020
18 Apr - 02 May 2020 Itinerary £1,699 Available Book Now
25 Apr - 09 May 2020 Itinerary £1,699 Available Book Now
02 May - 16 May 2020 Itinerary £1,749 Available Book Now
09 May - 23 May 2020 Itinerary £1,749 Available Book Now
16 May - 30 May 2020 Itinerary £1,749 Unavailable
12 Sep - 26 Sep 2020 Itinerary £1,799 Available Book Now
19 Sep - 03 Oct 2020 Itinerary £1,799 Available Book Now
26 Sep - 10 Oct 2020 Itinerary £1,799 Available Book Now
03 Oct - 17 Oct 2020 Itinerary £1,749 Available Book Now
10 Oct - 24 Oct 2020 Itinerary £1,749 Available Book Now

Important Information

  • With flight holidays include flights from Gatwick. Flight supplement from Manchester: £60

Montenegro

  • Double room for sole occupancy: £26 per night 
  • Sea view supplement: £10 per room per night
  • Independent travellers can join our transfer from Dubrovnik Airport: £45 single
  • Our airport taxi service operates at this resort: £165 per single taxi journey

Transfers between hotels via Dubrovnik airport are included

Dalmatian Coast

  • Sea view supplement: £24 per room per night
  • Double room for single occupancy: £25 per night
  • Independent guests can join our transfer to Dubrovnik Airport: £42.50
Duration:
14 nights
Type:
European Centre Based
Walking Grade:
2

14 nights from £1,999pp with flights

Save up to £50 per person

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