Adriatic Sea Kayaking Blog: Croatia and Montenegro

Which Adriatic Kayak tour is right for you? Let us help.

Posted by Tammy Resor on Tue, Mar 25, 2014 @ 02:25 PM

Multi-day Tours

First of all, all tours meet certain criteria. Sea kayaking: cool destination, warm water, lots of islands, great climate, tasty and fresh Mediterranean cuisine, active & relaxing, cozy B & B accommodations, small groups, fantastic guides, a company with 10 years of experience leading kayak tours in southern Dalmatia.
Montenegro mountains: the largest and deepest river gorge in Europe, prisitne nature at its best, crisp mountain air, a magnificant totally natural (undammed) river, and Niksic beer- some of the tastiest on the planet. Alternatively, you can drink water from the Tara River.

1.  Island Hopping Tour: It’s for everyone except extremists who want killer days. IH is a fantastic family tour and suitible for beginner/novice kayakers.The tour also caters to more experienced kayakers, as extra paddling can be added to the daily itinerary. Evenings on Lopud Island are lovely and relaxing. IH is offered frequently throughout the 6 month season.

2. Short Break Tour: It’s merely a shortend version of Island Hopping in the Elafiti Islands, so also suitable for the Island Hopping crowd. There are 3 days of kayaking, whereas Island Hopping has 4.5 kayaking days and a ½ day of island biking. Dinners are a highlight: you dine at a private home on a terrace overlooking Lopud Bay- fresh, organic, and local food in a spectacular outdoor setting.

 3. Paddle Dalmatia Tour: The PD tour appeals to those who want to camp (3 nights of tented camping), paddle longer days, and venture further. It’s less “relaxing” than Island Hopping and Short Break because you pack and move each day, but you don’t carry much gear. Meals are in restaurants, so no need to carry food and cooking utensils. PD is not offered durring the summer (high season) because it’s too difficult to book single night stays. PD is 6 days of sea kayaking, camping on the mainland, and overnights in B & Bs on the islands.

4. Best of Balkans Tour: For those who want to visit two distict regions, the Adriatic coast and islands as well as the inland mountians and rivers of northern Montenegro, Best of Balkans is your tour. The sea kayaking is the same as Short Break, so suitable for all ages and abilities. The mountain portion is also suitable for all- not highly strenuous rafting and hiking.

5. Montenegro Mountains and Sea Tour: The paddling expereince is different from kayaing in Croatia. You are in the Bay of Kotor, not in the open sea, so you are guaranteed calm water. In a big bay, you can get to lots of sights and villages (paddle to 2 UNESCO world heritage sites, Perast and Kotor) without straying far from your home base. The mountain section is the same as Best of Balkans- a bit closer, so a shorter drive- equally spectacular en route.

6.  Pedal & Paddle Tour: Pedal & Paddle is a multi-sport tour. Your week’s activity is divided into 3 days of kayaking and 2 full days of hiking and biking. Mljet Island is much larger island than those in the Elafiti Archipelago, so there are more options for longer bike rides, village to village on untrafficed roads. One third of the 60 km long island is national park with wonderful hiking trails. The hiking and biking is too challenging for young children.

 7. Vis Island, Outer Limits Tour: Vis is our most challenging sea kayaking tour. The island is more exposed to wind and extreme weather conditions, with longer paddling days, but very worth the visit and extra energy expended. The coves and beaches along the southern shore are stunning and undiscovered by most tourists. The Vis Tour is best suited to paddlers with some experience in open water and Adriaitc Kayak Tours alumni.

 

Dubrovnik and Elafiti islands

--Island Hopping: The Elafiti Archipelago

 

Elafiti Islands lunch

--Short Break: The Elafiti Archipelago

 

Trsteno Croatia

--Paddle Dalmatia: Elafiti and Beyond

 

Tara River white water rafting

--Best of Balkans: Croatia & Montenegro

 

Bay of Kotor hike

--Montenegro: Mountains and Sea

 

Mljet Island National Park

--Pedal and Paddle Mljet: Natural Tranquility

 

Vis Island kayaking

--Vis Island: Outer Limits

 

Tags: Croatia, Dubrovnik, Adventure Travel, Sea Kayak, Montenegro, holiday, family, where to go, raft, hike, bike

Dubrovnik Kayaking Favorites: City Walls

Posted by Tammy Resor on Thu, Jul 07, 2011 @ 04:57 AM

Dubrovnik's City Walls are spectacular from sea: it's a view that approaching sailors and invaders have seen for centuries. Little statues of St Blaise, Dubrovnik's patron saint, cast their eyes on you. Dramatic limestone and dolomite cliffs tower for 40 feet before the ancient stone bricks even begin.  Swallows swoop and tend their nests.  Plants cling to the vertical cliff surface. And all of this is crowned tiny picture-taking humans far above. A sea-going perspective of the city is something not to miss.

My favorite bar in Dubrovnik is Buža bar. Buža literally means "hole" and the bar is literally a "hole in the wall." If you want a drink there, first you have to find the hole.  Second, crawl through (okay, I'm being dramatic. You'll need to stoop a little.). Once you're through, unpretentious tables and chairs sit out on rocks for a view of the sea and Lokrum Island.  During the day you can sunbathe.  At night you can watch the sunset or the moon-rise. There is cliff jumping. At a bar. Best idea ever. Worst idea ever. 

Buža bar is also fun to experience from the sea. Kayakers and Buža-dwellers are part of the same club: tourists who venture outside of the walls. Literally. Crowded wall-walkers peer down from above, jealous of their cold beer (order Velebitsko) and your breezy sea-adventure.  Sometimes Buža Bar pirates make an appearance: local kids who jump from the rocks and try to swarm your kayak.  If you're not fast they'll cling to the boat, bogging down your attempts to power-paddle past them. Like I said, pirates. Try to avoid the pirates.

After the walls, our next stop is Lokrum Island. Little known fact: Lokrum Island is infested with peacocks. Squawking, showy, salad-stealing peacocks. And this time of year? Peachicks. (A close relative of the Chickpea.) Lokrum is great for a few hours or a whole day.  It's near to the city but feels like a world apart (There's snorkeling, cliff jumping, hiking, historic ruins, caves. There's even a nude beach). 

But all good things must come to an end. Before you know it you're back at Sveti Jakov Beach, bidding goodbye to your tour guide. Time for a drink?

Tags: Croatia, Dubrovnik, Sea Kayak, City Walls, Lokrum Island

Kayaking Croatia: A Day on Lopud Island

Posted by Tammy Resor on Sat, Jun 18, 2011 @ 06:09 AM

Our morning starts off hazy but it's clear by the time the ferry pulls into Lopud, the Elaphite Island where we're spending the day.  Lopud is known as a "living island" because about 200 people make their permanent residence here.  Some folks produce their own wine or olive oil on the island and many have impressive gardens.  However, not everything can be produced on the island.  As we unload with our dry bags and sunscreen, men pass with crates of apricots and baskets of bread.  Several large fish disembark alongside of us and later we watch as a man washes them in the clear bay water and guts them just ashore.

After a quick kayak tutorial and safety demonstration, we're cutting our way across the bay and around the western side of Lopud Island. It's not twenty minutes before a pod of dolphins surfaces to our right.  Hawking swallows swoop from the cliffs nearby.  It's low tide, so red sea anemones dot the rocks.

The Elaphite islands don't have many beaches.  It's more common to find jagged cliffs and shadowy, rainbow-ed caves.  But on the far side of Lopud, Sunj beach is wide and sandy and shallow.  In July and August the sea is bathtub-warm, but even now, in June, it's comfortable for swimming. The sand in Croatia is limestone and bright white, so the shallower regions shine turquoise. Peering over the rim of a kayak, you can spot fish or the rippled sea floor.  

After lunch at a shore-side restaurant, we relax.  The island has no cars, and few inhabitants, and it's peaceful compared to mainland Dubrovnik.  In the afternoon we'll paddle the east side of the island, finishing our circumnavigation.  There's a Benedictine monastery to explore and a friendly town-front once we get back to Lopud port.

There will be ice cream to eat.  Or maybe we'll drink some island-made wine while we wait for the ferry.  

But for now, on Sunj beach, the sand is warm and the sea is breezy

and the conditons are perfect for a little snooze...

Tags: Croatia, Dubrovnik, Sunj Beach, Lopud Island, Elaphite Islands, Sea Kayak