Via Dinarica trail made it to the National Geographic Traveler's list of the best world destinations in 2017. You'll see why when you get there!

Photo: Julien Duval
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Sports & adventure trip

Via Dinarica tour for experienced trekkers - conquer the most beautiful summits of Croatia

This tour is designed for experienced trekkers willing to explore exciting new places. You will sleep in two national parks, hike the most well-known trails on the Velebit Mountain taking you to the heart of preserved nature, and conquer the most beautiful summits of Croatia overlooking spectacular views.

We are taking you hiking on the most interesting stages of Via Dinarica trail on Velebit. From easy and moderately difficult to somewhat more demanding stages, this trail is perfect for advanced hikers searching for new excitement. Beautiful viewing points, preserved nature, peace and vastness of the mountain will contribute to the attractiveness of this trip. Lace your hiking boots, prepare your backpack and set out on a journey to Croatia to get your real hiking experience.

Trip highlights

  • Challenging hikes on Via Dinarica trails of Velebit mountain with expert guidance
  • Breath-taking views at various vantage points on Velebit mountain
  • Walking the legendary drystone man-made Premužić trail
  • Staying at mountain huts and lodges

Trip availableMAY-SEP
Duration7 days
Suitable for4-12 people
SupportFully guided
Languagesen
Price per personfrom 469.00 €
Great for
  • Groups of friends without children
  • Passionate hikers
You’ll be accommodated in
  • Mountain hut
  • Mountain lodge
Trip designed by Boris Kurilić

Licenced mountain guide with 40 years of experience, Velebit mountain aficionado.

Activities are taking place on Velebit mountain

Velebit Mountain is a biosphere reserve within UNESCO’s Man and the Biosphere Programme. It is an internationally recognised area with an established balance between biodiversity and growth needs of the local community.

National Park Northern Velebit is the youngest national park in Croatia and makes part of the National Ecological Network. This national park is also a member of the European Destinations of Excellence Network (EDEN). The park includes several already protected areas with diverse karst forms and abundant flora and fauna.

The prestigious National Geographic Traveler included Via Dinarica trail into 2017 best world destinations.

Via Dinarica is not only a trail for hikers, cyclists and other sightseers visiting the Dinarides as tourists, but also a platform for growth and advancement of life and work conditions of the Dinarides’ inhabitants. Besides providing hiking activities, one of the fundamental goals of the project is to promote the local economy, thus making the tourists experience domestic food, accommodation, diverse services, etc. Also, the central motif of Via Dinarica is regional connection whilst achieving joint development goals. This motif is expressed in the project motto of Via Dinarica – “Connecting naturally”.

Zavižan is one of the best-known localities in the Northern Velebit National Park. Located at 1594 m above sea level, is the mountain hut Zavižan and the oldest high-altitude weather station in Croatia, established in 1953. Since Velebit forms a natural border between continental and Mediterranean regions of Croatia, two different climates clash at its uppermost parts – the maritime and the continental climates - resulting in unpredictable weather conditions. This makes the Zavižan weather station invaluable to the meteorological community. 

Day-by-day itinerary

DAY 1

Hello Velebit

The meeting point for this tour is in Starigrad Paklenica, where you will meet your mountain guide. Also, there you can make a stopover at one of the supermarkets for food supplies.

Accompanied with your guide, you will have the private car transfer to Mountain hut Zavižan.

Depending on the time of arrival, your guide will take you to one of the Zavižan area peaks (Veliki Zavižan 1676 m, Balinovac 1601 m, Zavižanska Kosa 1620 m, Vučjak 1644 m). The scenic vistas provided by this group of peaks are sure to take your breath away. Have dinner and let your guide present a detailed hiking program for the following days.

Zavižan hut offers minor drinks service as well as the possibility to prepare your own food. Rooms and dormitories are furnished with bunk beds and bedding, no sleeping bags are required. The house has electricity and telephone. The building has a water cistern with limited capacity, and the water should be used only sparingly.

DAY 2

Premužić Trail

After breakfast, you will embark on the first stage of hiking and join the well-known Premužić Trail, built in the 1930s using the drystone technique. The 57 km trail was laid out and constructed by the forestry engineer Ante Premužić, a passionate mountaineer and lover of Velebit, along the mountain ridge from Zavižan to Baške Oštarije in central Velebit. Branching off from the Premužić Trail are several paths that climb up to some of the most spectacular peaks of northern and central Velebit – of course our guide knows them all. The route section between Zavižan and mountain hut Alan is perhaps the most beautiful part of the Trail, and it's a total of 15 km long.

As soon as you step through the doors of Alan mountain hut, you will be greeted by aroma of hot prepared meal. Enjoy your dinner, prepared for you.

The Alan mountain hut is a wooden cabin featuring 5 rooms. There is also fully equipped kitchen on the ground floor which you can use. In the summer season, the water from the cistern next to the kitchen is conducted into the kitchen. It should be used only sparingly. The mountain hut has no electric lighting. The water for the basic hygiene is provided next to the house. It is recommended to bring your own sleeping bags.

  • Duration: 6-7 hrs
  • Length: 16 km
  • Lowest point: 1340 m
  • Highest point: 1634 m

DAY 3

New day on Premužić Trail

After a good night's sleep and tasty breakfast in the morning, get ready for the other part of the Premužić trail. Second part of the Trail that leads from Alan mountain hut to the mountain hut Kugina kuća, that used to be a forest ranger’s house in central Velebit, is approx. 20 km long, taking you around 7 hours to complete and it is categorised as a mid-difficult stage.

The trail will take you along the maritime slope at equal elevation, interchanging forest and meadows. Needless to say, you will encounter extraordinary viewing points and views to be long remembered.

Mountain hut Kugina kuća is a former forester's cottage. The mountain hut is partialy equipped, it has a water cistern, and there is also a water source called Težakovac nearby, located 10 minutes of hiking away from the facility along the path towards Šatorina. The facility has three dormitories, and there is also a winter room (shelter) in the back of the house. It’s recommended to bring your own sleeping bags.

Dinner is organized upon your arrival to the hut. Overnight.

  • Duration: 7-8 hrs
  • Length: 20 km
  • Elevation gain: 482 m
  • Elevation loss: 879 m
  • Lowest point: 959 m
  • Highest point: 1622 m

DAY 4

Seaview and karst terrain

You will awaken along with the fresh mountain breeze. After breakfast, make sure you do your morning stretching routine as today’s stage is also mid-difficult, approx. 20 km. This stage presents a true liaison of karst and forest terrain. Here, you will witness the white limestone proudly adorning the green environment extending southeast, in parallel with the Adriatic coast. This hiking stage will couple you with the natural attractions of Velebit. Arrival to Baške Oštarije and overnight stay at the Camp Velebit.

In addition to the usual camping, Camp Velebit offers the possibility of accommodation in cottages whose construction is inspired by a series of films The Lord of the Rings. Also, the camp has themes and educational content from the old Slavic and old Croatian culture of tradition and mythology that will take you on a journey through our forgotten and magical past.

  • Duration: 7-8 hrs
  • Length: 20 km
  • Elevation gain: 801 m
  • Elevation loss: 830 m
  • Lowest point: 728 m
  • Highest point: 1317 m

DAY 5

Paklenica National Park

After three stages of quite a tempo, it's time to slow down and get ready for the remaining part of your trip. In the morning, a driver will take you to Starigrad Paklenica for groceries shopping. Weather permitting, relax at the beach for an hour or two and then, after the shopping, you still have the fourth stage, 6 km long. Today’s stage is easier and goes through the wonderful National Park Paklenica. In this area, you will see the parts of Velika (big) and Mala (small) Paklenica.

These two ravines are the result of Velebit’s rivers piercing through stone, at some points more than 300 m high. This is how nature created the perfect conditions for the climbing routes. Passing through here you might see sport climbing enthusiasts enjoying the moderate climate and protected nature. After a few hours, you will reach the mountain lodge Paklenica. Spend the rest of the day relaxing and getting ready for the remainder of the trip.

Mountain lodge Paklenica is located at the beginning of the Velika Paklenica canyon. The ground level is made of masonry and includes a dining area and a kitchen. The wooden upper level has dormitories with 40 beds. There is a fully equipped kitchen on the ground floor and you can choose between the meat and the vegetarian menu.

Dinner and overnight.

  • Duration: 2-3 hrs
  • Length: 6 km
  • Elevation gain: 400 m
  • Elevation loss: 0 m
  • Lowest point: 150 m
  • Highest point: 496 m

DAY 6

To the top

Preparations for the fifth stage include a plentiful breakfast with morning body stretching as the most difficult stage of the journey is ahead of you. Start with the ascent a bit earlier so that you have enough time as the stage ends again at the mountain lodge Paklenica. The first part of this stage goes through the forests of black pine and beech wood. The trail is pleasant for walking and not strenuous. The second part however, taking you to the second highest summit of Velebit called Sveto Brdo, is steeper, goes up-down a few times losing gained elevation, but the reward is well worth it.

Standing at its 1751 m of altitude, Sveto Brdo (Holy Hill) is only 6 m lower than Vaganski Vrh. Still, we find it to be the best view in Croatia. It is overlooking both the inland and the coast. Take some time for yourselves and your thoughts and let the feeling of unity with nature overflow you. From the summit, you will head back towards the mountain lodge Paklenica for dinner, last evening and overnight on the mountain.

  • Duration: 9-10 hrs
  • Length: 20 km
  • Lowest point: 480 m
  • Highest point: 1751

DAY 7

See you soon

Easy morning is ahead of you, enjoy your breakfast and morning coffee. Depending on your schedule for today, you will bid farewell to the mountain and head towards Starigrad, a pleasant seaside resort, but also a traditional gathering place for hikers and climbers, adventurers and scientists, and all nature lovers who come to enjoy the beauties of Paklenica and the Velebit. 

What's included?

  • Private vehicle transfer from Starigrad, Paklenica to the Mountain hut Zavižan
  • Experienced and qualified mountain guide services from the first to the last day
  • Entrance fee to National park Northern Velebit
  • Overnight stay at mountain hut Zavižan, tourist tax
  • Overnight stay with dinner and breakfast at mountain hut Alan, tourist tax
  • Overnight stay with dinner and breakfast at mountain hut Kugina kuća, tourist tax
  • Overnight stay at Camp Velebit, tourist tax
  • Private car transfer from Baške Oštarije to Starigrad, Paklenica
  • Entrance fee to National park Paklenica
  • 2 overnights with dinner and breakfast at mountain hut Paklenica, tourist tax
  • Trip preparation fee
  • VAT

What's not included?

  • International airfare to and from Croatia
  • Transfer to and from Starigrad, Paklenica
  • Meals and services other than those specified in the itinerary
  • Personal expenses
  • Travel insurance
  • Gratuities (tips are always appreciated but not mandatory)

Ask about availability & get an offer

What happens when you request an offer?

1

We will double-check availability and make reservations for your rooms, restaurants, guides etc.

2

With reservations confirmed, we will prepare the best offer possible in regard to your arrival date & party size

3

You will get the offer via e-mail, along with the payment options. Feel free to request further customisations!

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