Visit Croatia
...Educational Visit...

Page 1 | Page 2 | Hotel Reviews

Read my review of the hotels visited here.

British Agents Educational to Croatia, 14th April -18th April 2000

As the plane took off from Dubrovnik Airport, I was able to have a final look at the beautiful Dubrovnik Riviera and a memorable five days spent touring the Dalmatian coastline. Josip Lozic of the Croatian National Tourist Office and Rupert Diggins of Holiday Options invited me to join a group of travel agents on an educational trip to Croatia.
One of the main things that struck me about the educational, aside from the astounding beauty of the country, was the friendliness of the locals, hotel and restaurant staff, and tourist office officials. Nothing was too difficult for them. Our group, representatives of the British retail travel agents received ho spitality that was second to none: countless trays of drinks, numerous leaflets and many welcome speeches showed us how keen everyone was to give a good impression that we could take home with us and pass on to others.

Friday, April 14th
Meeting at Gatwick Airport, I was surprised by the large group of people waiting at the Croatia Airlines check-in desk. There were 50 of us; 30 students from Eton School going on an archaeological excursion to Dalmatia; some people travelling to Medjugorje and a few other s who were taking an early holiday. I expected the plane to be crowded, but I was surprised how roomy and comfortable the new Airbus 320 is in comparison with the old 737. [Croatia Airlines has the most modern fleet, comprising of superb Airbus 319 and 320 planes, and they are getting two more at the end of June.]

We touched down in the small but modern Split Airport and we were processed through customs and immigration smoothly. Our guide for the duration of the trip, Tomislav from Atlas Travel, introduced himself, and then we were given a welcoming drink, being able to choose from a variety of local spirits or, for the not so adventurous, orange juice. The mayor of Kastela, the region where Split Airport is located, also spoke briefly and handed out the first of many brochures that we were to receive. The half an hour coach journey to Split harbour enabled us to see the capital of Dalmatia briefly (albeit in the dark) before we boarded the hydrofoil to Supetar on the island of Brac, which was to be our destination for the night. Arriving quite late at Hotel Kaktus meant the buffet dinner laid out for us was more than sufficient before we all retired to our rather chilly rooms, prompting many of us to hoard as many extra blankets as possible. Of course, had this been the middle of August, we'd be kicking off the blankets!

Saturday, April 15th
The first of the 8am wake up calls for the trip got us out of bed...well, at the very least, it woke us up. The early start was meant so that we could cram as much sight-seeing and hotel examining as possible, not only today, but for all of the four-day stay. After another quick buffet, this time for breakfast (a wide variety), our group set off on a quick tour of the enormous Hotel Kaktus complex, which included apartments and the Hotel Salvia. The tour also meant that we walked briefly beside the sea, proving the proximity of the Adriatic to the accommodation. That morning also provided us with an opportunity to do a quick sight-seeing tour of Supetar. Unfortunately, the rather grey and blustery, but not particularly cold, weather meant a quick stop at the Bureau de Change sufficed for most people, before we got back on our Atlas coach to cross the island of Brac. The drive from Supetar to Bol was not particularly long, but enabled us to view the beautiful scenery as we drove over the peaks of the island. In Bol, the tour of the Hotel Bretanide and its sister hotel, the all-inclusive Hotel Bonaca, preceded our 40 minute hydrofoil (airplane-seating arrangement, very smooth and comfortable) journey to the pretty Hvar Town on the island of Hvar. No doubt all our hard work deserved a hearty lunch, and that is exactly what we got at the Hotel Palace: indeed, we got the first of many four-course meals that prompted many of us to say that we did not eat this well at home! The high occurrence of seafood was also welcomed by many. Lunch consisted of a starter of squid; chicken soup; the usual meat, chips and salad main course; and cake for dessert. By this time the gorgeous sun had decided to shine which meant our brief period of free time (Tomislav kept us on a very tight schedule!) was well spent in one of the cafes or sitting beside the harbour. On to a quick tour of a few of the hotels in Stari Grad (Hotel Arkada and the sister Trim Bungalows) before reaching our final destination that day, the Hotel Mina in Jelsa, where we were welcomed with a chance to try some local herb liqueurs, which were pronounced as being first class. After another four-course meal for dinner we headed off to on e of the local bars in town, a short walk from the hotel, for a drink courtesy of Holiday Options. Cheers!

Hvar Town   Jelsa
Hvar Town   Jelsa

blog comments powered by Disqus

Visit Croatia © 2012 About Us | Sitemap | Guestbook | Useful Addresses | Contact