Islandhopping by Boat & Bike: Highlights of Istria

8 days / 7 nights | Ship: Linda | from / to Omisalj

Istria, also referred to as the “green heart of Europe” by the locals, is Croatia’s most famous peninsula and travel destination and its popularity is not without good reason. Together with Islandhopping, you can experience the highlights of Istria from multiple perspectives on this week-long trip; from the maritime perspective on board and on land you explore the beautiful coastlines, the fruitful hinterlands and the fascinating harbor towns such as Pula, Poreč and Rovinj.

There is so much to discover along the way! Medieval villages, ancient monuments, picturesque wineries and impressive caves are to be discovered along the way. During the guided bike tours, you will learn all about the region from our knowledgeable and friendly guides.

Back on board the boat local specialties are prepared in in the galley and you can enjoy all the benefits of a mobile accommodation. The floating hotel eliminates the need to pack your bags each day as you travel from one highlight to the next and you have the possibility to enjoy a refreshing swim directly from the boat in the crystal clear waters of the Adriatic Sea. Arriving at the next port, picturesque old towns entice you to take an extended stroll. Vacation pure! What more do you want?

The itinerary of the Istria Highlights tour is the same as the itinerary of the Istria Highlights PLUS tour, making the PLUS tour on board the Deluxe ship a great alternative should you have difficulties finding availability on this trip.

Highlights of this bike and boat trip

✔ Culture: A visit to the impressive amphitheatre in Pula
✔ Nature: The beautiful Limski-Canal
✔ Activity: Visit to the famous Baredine Cave with its underground lake
✔ Culinary: The famous white truffles from Istria


Itinerary 2024

Day 1 (Fri) Omisalj (Embarkation) – Cres

Individual arrival to Omišalj, a charming pirate’s nest on the island of Krk. If you decide to arrive by car, we can gladly organize a secure parking space for your car for the week. If you are arriving from Zagreb, we can also arrange a transfer for you to the harbor of Omišalj. Check-in on board is possible from around 2pm. Once we have made ourselves comfortable in our cabins, we enjoy the first crossing to Cres. If the weather is good, we stop for a swim in a beautiful bay and you can take a dip in the Adriatic Sea. Our destination is the island capital of the same name, where we spend the night. The Venetian-influenced old town of Cres, with its beautiful alleys and many churches, entices you to take an extensive evening stroll

Day 2 (Sat) Cres – Pula (aprx. 11 mi./19 km by bike)

After breakfast on board, the first task is to adjust our bikes in the idyllic harbor of Cres and take a first bike tour to the lighthouse. Afterwards, we take a longer crossing to Pula at the southern tip of Istria, where a guided tour of the old town awaits us. The secret capital of Istria awaits us with impressive evidence of its Roman past. Take your time for an extensive stroll and explore impressive ancient monuments, such as the famous amphitheater reminiscent of the Colosseum in Rome, the Temple of Augustus and the Golden Gate.

Day 3 (Sun) Pula – Vrsar (23 mi./38 km by bike)

In the morning we explore some picturesque places in and around Pula. Via Galizana we go to Vodnjan and further through the fishing village Fazana before coming back to Pula. Once there, the boat takes us to Vrsar with the chance for a swim break at the Limski Fjord. In Vrsar, where you will spend the night, the heartbreaker Casanova is believed to have sought temporary refuge from the husbands of his lovers.

Day 4 (Mon): (Mon) Vrsar – Poreč (aprx. 18 mi/29 km by bike)

From Vrsar we cycle along the Limski Canal to Kloštar in the rural hinterland. During a longer break we fortify ourselves with a local meal before the tour continues onwards to the destination of Poreč. In the afternoon, we encounter the colourful history of Poreč at every turn as we stroll through the charming old town with its beautiful buildings from bygone eras. There is a real energy to be felt in the shopping alleys. A visit to the famous Euphrasius Basilica with its magnificent early Christian mosaics is also worthwhile.

Day 5 (Tue) Poreč – Novigrad – Rovinj (aprx. 36 mi/59 km)

In the morning we follow the "Parenzana", an abandoned railroad line, which leads us to the famous artists' village of Groznjan. The picturesque artists’ village is a medieval jewel in the Istrian hinterland. It awaits us with romantic alleys, flower-filled squares and diverse galleries that have made their home in old natural stone houses. In the afternoon, we bike through rural Istria via Buje to Novigrad, where we hop on board, with the chance for a quick swimming break, before continuing onwards to Rovinj for our overnight stay.

Day 6 (Wed) Rovinj – Fažana – Rabac (aprx. 25 mi/41 km)

Our morning bike ride takes us near the coast, mostly on natural forest paths to Fažana, with its quaint little harbor and promenade lined with colorful houses. Afterwards, we continue to Pula, where our boat will take us on a longer crossing to Rabac. Here, located on a picturesque bay on the east coast of Istria, we can enjoy gorgeous white pebble beaches, crystal clear waters and a beautiful harbor. Not to be missed is an evening cocktail in a local bar.

Day 7 (Thu) Rabac – Njivice - Omišalj (aprx. 23 mi/38 km)

In the early morning, we cross to the island of Krk, where a final cycling stage awaits us. The route will lead us from Njivice to Omišalj. The largest island in Croatia and home of the delicious Zlahtina white wine impresses with its diverse landscapes. Don’t miss the opportunity to cover yourself in the mineral rich mud in the bay of Soline – it will not only leave you looking ten years younger, but also makes for a wonderful holiday memory! Back in the harbor of Omišalj, our boat awaits us with a delicious last evening meal on board which can be spent in great cheer in the company of the fellow travelers, crew and guides.

Day 8 (Fri) Omisalj (Disembarkation)

After breakfast disembarkation until 9 am and individual trip home or extended stay in Croatia.

Changes: We reserve the right to make changes to the planned itinerary due to changing wind and weather conditions as well as organizational requirements.

Please note: All cycling distances stated above are approximate only.