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Croatia Itinerary Advice - Thank you!

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Hey all, first time putting an itinerary together. Looking for some advice for a trip to Croatia with a girl friend. Planning to do a 10-11 day trip. Slovenia would be a very nice to have (Bled I heard is amazing), but understand if it is out of the way. Was looking to fly into Ljubjana and then out from Dubrovnik possibly. Open to any suggestions, especially RE travel options.

Here's a rough itinerary of what I have after a few more hours of researching:

Day 1 - Arrive in Ljubjana: Explore city
Day 2 - Bled & train/(other transport?) to Zagreb. Overnight in Zagreb (Should I rent a car and then drop off in Split?)
Day 3 - Zagreb to Plitvice National Park as early as possible (bus is fastest option if not car?) Overnight at Plitvice.
Day 4 - Plitvice National Park (worth staying a day?)
Day 5 - Car/Bus to Split. Go on sailing trip (itinerary and details below)
Day 8 - Arrive back from sailing. Stay a night in Hvar (how is the party scene? Want a good night of partying)
Day 9 - Head to Dubrovnik for a night
Day 10-11 - ?? Fly out of Dubrovnik (hopefully)

Sailing Trip - Was looking at options and I think the "best" islands to visit are Hvar, Korcula, and Vis? Was thinking of doing a 4 day sail around those islands through a chartered boat. More than happy to hear suggestions, would like a private boat for us and the skipper, if possible, suggestions welcome. Does anyone have an opinion on this itinerary:

Thoughts on festivals? -

Many thanks, know this is a long post but its my first time completely planning a vacation. Please feel free to criticize or add/subtract...thanks again!!!!

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    Have you checked how easy (and cheap) it is to fly into Ljubljana and out of Dubrovnik? You might find the flight connections aren't great, depending on where you are flying in from.

    It might actually make more sense, in some cases, to fly into Zagreb instead of Ljubljana and rent the car immediately (or after the first night) and then drive to Slovenia, even though it means a tad more backtacking. If you do a limited time in Slovenia, the car would make that a lot easier. (And you want to rent/drop the car in the same country.)

    I love Slovenia. Ljubljana is one of my favorite cities in Europe. Lake Bled is lovely - that church out on the island is eye-popping - but it's not very big and a bit of a tourist resort, for what that's worth. The whole area around it - Lake Bohinj, Triglav National Park, etc. - really deserves more time than one day. It's up to you whether you find it worthwhile to make the detour into Slovenia just for a few quick days.

    Plitvice is amazing but doesn't really require much time. I prefer to enter the park first thing when it opens (7AM in season) before the tour groups arrive. But you can be out in 5-6 hours easily without being overly rushed. Arriving the night before and staying in one of the park hotels overnight, then entering the park first thing next morning worked well for me.

    I can't help you with your query about sailing.

    If you don't do Slovenia, you could spend more time in the south and explore, say, Montenegro, which is also lovely. Or spend a night in Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina on the way down to Dubrovnik.

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    You are going to a gorgeous part of the world, but I must say that your plan is WAY too rushed for my tastes. Of course, that means nothing – what matters is what YOU want to see and do – but I must ask: Have you determined whether you can see and experience the things that draw you to this area?

    If you haven’t already done so, I recommend that you get some good guidebooks (or spend some time with a few in your local library), identify the things you most want to see in each location, check their opening/closing times on the internet, and mark them on a calendar. Then pencil in your transportation, add some time on either side (for getting to/from your lodging, checking in/out, packing/unpacking, getting oriented, etc.). Only then can you see how things fit together. FWIW, the guidebook that I found – by far! – the best of the half-dozen I used when I traveled to the area was the Rough Guide.

    It is, IMO, VERY hard to do justtice to Croatia in the time you have, so you might want to consider EITHER a bit of southern Croatia (e.g., Dubrovnik, Split, Hvar, etc.) OR a bit of northern Croatia + Slovenia (e.g., Split, the Plitvice Lakes, Llubljana, Bled, etc.) Just an idea. For some comparative info: I wanted 2 full days in Ljubljiana, 2 nights in Bled, 3 full days in Zagreb, 3 days in Split, etc.

    WHEN you are traveling also matters -- ferries don't run year round; some places are either ridiculously crowded or shuttered, depending on time of year, etc. I would strongly encourage you to pay attention to that information!

    For your travel options, consult

    Good luck!

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