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Croatia Truffle Festival

Valid for all trips departing January 1st, 2014 - October 21st, 2015 Last Updated: July 2, 2014
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Introduction

Prized by epicureans for their flavour and scarcity, the elusive truffle is the rock star of the fungus world. And nobody celebrates this most exalted of tubers quite like Croatia, home to the annual Truffle Days Festival. Beginning on the island of Cres, our adventure here will introduce you to the idyllic seaside communities of Croatia’s Adriatic Coast and let you partake in a genuine truffle hunt with a professional tartufalo before delivering you to the culinary tuberpalooza itself in Livade. Don’t forget to pack your appetite. (In fact, pack a spare, just in case.)

  • Sample local delicacies at the world-famous Truffle Days Festival in Livade
  • Taste fresh olive oil in Cres
  • Search for truffles with a professional tartufalo
  • Experience Groznjan's thriving art scene
  • Visit medieval Hum (the world’s smallest town)
Duration: 5 days
Start/Finish City: Rijeka to Rijeka
Service Level: Standard
  • Great value, reasonable prices, quality experiences
  • Comfortable and varied tourist-class accommodations chosen for location and character
  • Mix of public and private transport for the best overall experience
  • All the top highlights included, plus plenty of time to explore on your own
Physical Grading: 2
There'll be some light walking and hiking. Suitable for most fitness levels. Nothing too challenging.
Travel Style: Classic
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Designed for maximum variety, these trips are geared towards travellers searching for a healthy mix of active exploration, uncommon landscapes, amazing wildlife and local cultures.

Trip Type: Small Group
Group trips average 12 travellers per departure, depending on the adventure. The maximum is usually no more than 16, but some can be smaller or bigger, depending on the trip. Check individual trips for details.

Itinerary

Route map for Croatia Truffle Festival (ECTF)

Day 1 Rijeka

Arrive at any time. As your fellow travellers are arriving throughout the day, there are no planned activities until your welcome meeting this evening, so check-in to the hotel (check-in time is approx 3pm) and enjoy the city.

Check the notice boards or ask at reception for the exact time and location of the welcome meeting, which usually starts between 6 and 7pm. After the meeting, you may like to head out for a meal at a local restaurant with your group and CEO.

Rijeka is a major seaport for Croatia with an economy dependent on shipbuilding and maritime transport. It's the biggest city on the northern Croatian coastline and has influences from Italian, Austrian and Croatian cultural tradition. It has a rich industrial heritage—the torpedo was invented and produced in Rijeka and the M/S Carpathia, which rescued Titanic survivors in April 1912 was sailing from New York to Rijeka. Additionally, the real story of the Austrian Von Trapp family (from "The Sound of Music") started in this city.

Rijeka’s main sights have been labelled with plaques and brought together in a walking tour called the “Tourist Route” – or Turistička magistrala. Wander down the Corso, Rijeka's main pedestrian street, which is lined by elegant buildings, shops and cafes.

The city's industrial past and present also offer some sites to explore, including an old sugar refinery with beautiful and interesting decorative elements and a paper mill that was once one of the region's most successful industries. The remains of the torpedo factory, which was opened in 1866, still exist, and the city is looking into restoring historic parts of it as an industrial heritage monument.

Day 2 Cres (1B)

Hop on a ferry and travel to the island of Cres, the largest island in the Adriatic Sea. Continue to the town of Cres with its traditional harbour, Gothic and Renaissance churches and monasteries, noble families' palaces and the remains of old town walls. Taste Cres's high quality olive oil, sometimes called "liquid gold", still produced in the traditional method which involves picking olives by hand. The end of October is the start of the olive season, when the entire island revolves around only olives.

Overnight in a homestay tonight; may be multi-share.

Day 3 Motovun (1B)

Visit of the ancient town of Beli, well-known for its "Eko-center Caput Insulae" research and education centre, whose basic work is protection of the rare griffon vulture. It features an exhibit about the biodiversity of the island, an ethnological heritage collection, a rescue center for the griffons, a stone maze and an eco-trail through the woods of Tramuntana.

Afterwards, board a ferry back to the mainland and travel to Motovun. This ancient Istrian town-monument, located atop a 277m high hill dates back to the Middle Ages. The position and views of Motovun make it one of the most beautiful towns in the Istrian inlands.

Day 4 Motovun (1B)

Go truffle searching with a professional tartufalo and his dog, in the small town of Livade, near the Motovun woods. The biggest truffle in the world was found in this area in 2000 (1.3 kg!) with the help of dogs, specially trained to find the underground mushroom using their sense of smell. The annual “Truffle Days” are held every October, where you can sample dishes made from freshly picked truffles.

In the afternoon, explore in Groznjan, located on a 288m hill, with great views of Motovun and Učka Mountain. Today it is well-known as very cultural town with frequent classical music concerts, a jazz festival and painting exhibits in numerous small art galleries.

Day 5 Rijeka (1B)

En route back to Rijeka, stop by medieval Hum, known as the smallest town in the world. By legend, it was founded by giants building neighbouring towns; they decided to use the remaining rocks to build Hum.

Arrive in Rijeka at 11am. Your CEO will help with onward travel. Major international hubs include Zagreb, Venice, Trieste, Ljubljana, Rijeka and Pula.

What's Included

Cres orientation walk with olive oil tasting. Overnight homestay. Beli seaside village visit. Ancient Motovun orientation walk. Tartufalo-led truffle hunt (Livade). Truffle Days Festival.

Highlights

Sample local delicacies at the world-famous Truffle Days Festival in Livade, taste fresh olive oil in Cres, search for truffles with a professional tartufalo, experience Groznjan's thriving art scene, visit medieval Hum (the world’s smallest town)

Dossier Disclaimer

The information in this trip details document has been compiled with care and is provided in good faith. However it is subject to change, and does not form part of the contract between the client and the operator. The itinerary featured is correct at time of printing. It may differ slightly to the one in the brochure. Occasionally our itineraries change as we make improvements that stem from past travellers, comments and our own research. Sometimes it can be a small change like adding an extra meal along the itinerary. Sometimes the change may result in us altering the tour for the coming year. Ultimately, our goal is to provide you with the most rewarding experience. Please note that our brochure is usually released in November each year. If you have booked from the previous brochure you may find there have been some changes to the itinerary.

VERY IMPORTANT: Please ensure that you print a final copy of your Trip Details to review a couple of days prior to travel, in case there have been changes that affect your plans.

Itinerary Disclaimer

While it is our intention to adhere to the route described below, there is a certain amount of flexibility built into the itinerary and on occasion it may be necessary, or desirable to make alterations. The itinerary is brief, as we never know exactly where our journey will take us. Due to our style of travel and the regions we visit, travel can be unpredictable. The Trip Details document is a general guide to the tour and region and any mention of specific destinations or wildlife is by no means a guarantee that they will be visited or encountered.

Additionally, any travel times listed are approximations only and subject to vary due to local circumstances.

Group Leader Description

This G Adventures group trip is accompanied by one of our CEOs (Chief Experience Officer). The aim of the CEO is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. They will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the countries visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects.

Meals Included

4 breakfasts.

Meals

Eating is a big part of traveling. Travelling with G Adventures you experience the vast array of wonderful food that is available out in the world. Generally meals are not included in the trip price when there is a choice of eating options, to give you the maximum flexibility in deciding where, what and with whom to eat. It also gives you more budgeting flexibility, though generally food is cheap. Our groups tend to eat together to enable you to taste a larger variety of dishes and enjoy each other's company. There is no obligation to do this though. Your CEO will be able to suggest favourite restaurants during your trip. The above information applies to G Adventures group trips. For Independent trips please check the itinerary for details of meals included. For all trips please refer to the meals included and budget information for included meals and meal budgets.

Meal Budget

Allow EUR150-200 for meals not included.

Transport

Public bus, ferry, private van.

About our Transportation

As this is a short trip, the distances covered are small and the scenery along the way is very beautiful. This trip incorporates a mixture of public and private transport. The bus and ferry systems in Croatia are generally good, but inevitably travelling by public transport can involve delays and frustrations, and we ask you to keep this in mind.

Solo Travellers

We believe single travellers should not have to pay more to travel so our group trips are designed for shared accommodation and do not involve a single supplement. Single travellers joining group trips are paired in twin or multi-share accommodation with someone of the same sex for the duration of the trip. Some of our Independent trips are designed differently and single travellers on these itineraries must pay the single trip price.

Accommodation

Hotels (3 nts), homestay (1 nt, multi-share).

My Own Room Exceptions

Night 2 - homestay in Cres.

About Accommodation

It is important to note that accommodation in Europe tend to be quite different to other areas of the world you may have travelled in. Buildings and rooms are generally old and may not have been renovated or maintained to the highest standard. Downtown hotels in Europe were not build to be hotels but rich owners houses, which have been changed into hotels. Therefore unusual room sizes are common as large rooms have been partitioned in the past, resulting in rather "thin" walls.

Staff can occasionally demonstrate less than perfect customer service. As accommodation is in short supply, especially during the summer months, hotels can charge a premium and there is sometimes little motivation to improve facilities.

On this trip you can expect to stay in small family-run hotels or pensions (with the exception of the start and finish hotels, which are often larger city hotels), which will vary a little in standard and facilities: some may not have elevators, air-conditioning or English-speaking staff, but most importantly all are locally-run, with some traditional character, and in excellent central locations to give you maximum time for exploring the sights. On Day 2 we use local homestays, giving you the unique opportunity to stay with local people and experience life from their viewpoint. You can expect to find clean, safe, simple accommodation in convenient locations.

Joining Instructions

Hotel Neboder is comfortable, modern, friendly and well located for all the sights of central Rijeka.

Major airport hubs within striking distance of Rijeka include: Rijeka, Pula, Zagreb, Ljubljana, Trieste and Venice.

From Zagreb airport: take bus from airport to main bus station ( approx. 6€), from there direct bus to Rijeka ( 2 hrs ride, approx. 26€), from bus station hotel can be reached with lines 1,2 and 3A, third stop – called Fiumara. Hotel is visible from there ( 14 floors building), additional 250m walking

From Venice airport: train to Trieste, from there bus to Rijeka, from bus station hotel can be reached with lines 1,2 and 3A, third stop – called Fiumara. Hotel is visible from there ( 12 floors building), additional 250m walking

From Ljubljana airport: bus to Ljubljana centre, from there train to Rijeka, from train station hotel can be reached with lines 1,2 and 3A, fifth stop – called Fiumara. Hotel is visible from there ( 12 floors building), additional 250m walking

From Rijeka Airport there is a shuttle bus that will meet every flight. The distance is around 30km.

From Pula there are regular buses taking around an hour.

Arrival Complications

We don't expect any problems, and nor should you, but if for any reason you are unable to commence your trip as scheduled, as soon as possible please contact your starting point hotel, requesting that you speak to or leave a message for your CEO. If you are unable to get in touch with your leader, please refer to our emergency contact details.

Emergency Contact

Should you need to contact us during a situation of dire need, it is best to first call either the G Adventures Local Operator (if one is listed below) or our G Adventures Local Office. If for any reason you do not receive an immediate answer, please leave a detailed message and contact information, so they may return your call and assist you as soon as possible.

EMERGENCY CONTACT NUMBERS
G Adventures Office, London, UK
After hours emergency number: +44 7817 262559

If you are unable for any reason to contact our local office, please call the numbers listed below, which will connect you directly with our 24 hour Sales team, who will happily assist you.

Toll-free, North America only: 1 888 800 4100
Calls from UK: 0844 272 0000
Calls from Germany: 01805 70 90 30 00
Calls from Australia: 1 300 796 618
Calls from New Zealand: 0800 333 307
Outside North America, Australia, New Zealand, Germany and the UK: +1 416 260 0999

What to Take

You will be on the move a lot, so our advice is to pack as lightly as possible. We highly recommend using a backpack or light sports bag, whichever you find easiest to carry, plus a small daypack. Luggage space on public transport is limited. You must be prepared to carry your own bags and be comfortable carrying them between transport and hotels (max. 15-20 mins walking), hopping on and off trains and public buses and up and down stairs.

Checklist

Suggested Items:
•Light fleece top
•Light windproof/waterproof jacket
•Small towel and swimwear
•Sun hat
•Personal clothing for mild weather (See also "What to Take" and "Local Dress" sections of this dossier)
•Sturdy walking shoes
•Sunblock
•Sunglasses
•Toiletries (biodegradable)
•Watch or alarm clock
•Water bottle
•Money belt
•First-aid kit (should contain lip salve, Aspirin, bandaids, anti-histamine,
Imodium or similar tablets for mild cases of diarrhea, rehydration powder, insect
repellent, extra prescription drugs you may be taking)

Optional Items:
•Cell/mobile phone
•Camera and memory card/stick
•Charger for phone/camera/music device
•Reading/writing material
•Cover for backpacks

Documents:
•Passport (with photocopies)
•Travel insurance (with photocopies)
•Airline tickets (with photocopies)
•EUR cash
•Credit or debit card (see personal spending money)
•G Adventures vouchers, pre-departure information and dossier
•Any entry visas or vaccination certificates required

Laundry

Laundry facilities are offered by some of our hotels for a charge. There will be times when you may want to or have to do your own laundry so we suggest you bring non-polluting/biodegradable soap.

Visas

Contact your local embassy or consulate for the most up-to-date visa requirements, or see your travel agent. It is your responsibility to have the correct travel documentation. While we provide the following information in good faith, it is vital that you check yourself and understand that you are fully responsible for your own visa requirements.

A valid passport for at least three months beyond length of stay is required. USA, Canada, Australia and New Zealand passport holders do not need a visa to visit Croatia for stays of up to 90 days.

Spending Money

Every traveller is different and therefore spending money requirements will vary. Some travellers may drink more than others while other travellers like to purchase more souvenirs than most. Please consider your own spending habits when it comes to allowing for drinks, shopping and tipping. Please also remember the following specific recommendations when planning your trip.

Money Exchange

Credit cards and debit cards are very useful for cash advances. Visa cards are the most widely accepted cards. While ATMs are widely available, there are no guarantees that your credit or debit cards will actually work in Croatia. Check with your bank. You should be aware that to purchase products or services on a credit card a fee of 5%-10% usually applies. Do not rely on credit or debit cards as your only source of money. A combination of euros, travellers cheques and cards is best. Always take more rather than less, as you don't want to spoil the trip by constantly feeling short of funds.

Please note that the local currency in Croatia is the Croatian Kuna (HRK). Approximate exchange rates:
1 USD | 6 HRK
1 EUR | 8 HRK
1 GBP | 9 HRK

As currency exchange rates can fluctuate often we ask that you refer to the following website for daily exchange rates: www.xe.com

Emergency Fund

Please also make sure you have access to at least an additional USD $200 (or equivalent) as an 'emergency' fund, to be used when circumstances outside our control (ex. a natural disaster) require a change to our planned route. This is a rare occurrence!

Departure Tax

Usually included in international air ticket

Tipping

Although not compulsory, tipping is expected and is an expression of satisfaction with the people who have assisted you throughout your tour. Although it may not be customary to you, it is of considerable significance to the people who will take care of you during your travels. There will be several occasions during this trip where there is the opportunity to tip the local guides that we use. You may do this individually, or your CEO will offer to collect the money and tip as a group. Recommendations for tipping local guides range from 3-5 USD/EUR per person per day depending on the quality and length of the service. Ask your CEO for specific recommendations based on the circumstances and culture. Also, at the end of your trip, if you felt that your G Adventures CEO did an outstanding job, tipping is appreciated. The amount is entirely a personal preference, however as a guideline 20-25 USD/EUR per person, per week can be used.

Health

Please note inoculations may be required for the country visited. It is your responsibility to consult with your travel doctor for up to date medical travel information well before departure.

You should consult your doctor for up-to-date medical travel information well before departure. We recommend that you carry a First Aid kit and hand sanitizers / antibacterial wipes as well as any personal medical requirements. Please be aware that quite often we are in remote areas and away from medical facilities, and for legal reasons our leaders are prohibited from administering any type of drug including headache tablets, antibiotics, etc. When selecting your trip please carefully read the brochure and itinerary and assess your ability to cope with our style of travel. Please refer to the Physical and Culture Shock ratings for trip specific information. G Adventures reserves the right to exclude any traveller from all or part of a trip without refund if in the reasonable opinion of our CEO they are unable to complete the itinerary without undue risk to themselves and/or the rest of the group.

Safety and Security

Many national governments provide a regularly updated advice service on safety issues involved with international travel. We recommend that you check your government's advice for their latest travel information before departure. We strongly recommend the use of a neck wallet or money belt while travelling, for the safe keeping of your passport, air tickets, travellers' cheques, cash and other valuable items. Leave your valuable jewellery at home - you won't need it while travelling. Many of the hotels we use have safety deposit boxes, which is the most secure way of storing your valuables. A lock is recommended for securing your luggage. When travelling on a group trip, please note that your CEO has the authority to amend or cancel any part of the trip itinerary if it is deemed necessary due to safety concerns. Your CEO will accompany you on all included activities. During your trip you will have some free time to pursue your own interests, relax and take it easy or explore at your leisure. While your CEO will assist you with options available in a given location please note that any optional activities you undertake are not part of your itinerary, and we offer no representations about the safety of the activity or the standard of the operators running them. Please use your own good judgment when selecting an activity in your free time. Although the cities visited on tour are generally safe during the day, there can be risks to wandering throughout any major city at night. It is our recommendation to stay in small groups and to take taxis to and from restaurants, or during night time excursions.

Protests and Demonstrations- Protests and demonstrations, even those that are well intended, have the potential to turn violent with no warning. Counter protests can also turn violent. Action by security forces to disperse demonstrators and protesters may occur at any time. If you are in an area where demonstrators or protesters are gathering, avoid the temptation of staying for a good photo opportunity and leave the area immediately.

Water based activities have an element of danger and excitement built into them. We recommend only participating in water based activities when accompanied by a guide(s). We make every reasonable effort to ensure the fun and adventurous element of any water based activities (in countries with varying degrees of operating standards) have a balanced approach to safety. It is our policy not to allow our CEOs to make arrangements on your behalf for water based activities that are not accompanied by guide(s).

Swimming, including snorkeling, is always at your own risk.

We take all prudent measures in relation to your safety. For ways to further enhance your personal safety while traveling, please visit:


www.gadventures.com/travel-resources/safety/

Medical Form

Our small group adventures bring together people of all ages. It is very important you are aware that, as a minimum, an average level of fitness and mobility' is required to undertake our easiest programs. Travellers must be able to walk without the aid of another person, climb 3-4 flights of stairs, step on and off small boats, and carry their own luggage at a minimum. Travellers with a pre-existing medical condition are required to complete a short medical questionnaire, which must be signed by their physician. This is to ensure that travellers have the necessary fitness and mobility to comfortably complete their chosen trip. While our CEOs work hard to ensure that all our travellers are catered for equally, it is not their responsibility to help individuals who cannot complete the day's activities unaided. Please refer to the physical ratings in this Trip Details document for more information.

The medical questionnaire can be found online at:

www.gadventures.com/medical-form
.

A Couple of Rules

Illegal drugs will not be tolerated on any trips. Possessing or using drugs not only contravenes the laws of the land but also puts the rest of the group at risk. Smoking marijuana and opium is a part of local culture in some parts of the world but is not acceptable for our travellers. Our philosophy of travel is one of respect towards everyone we encounter, and in particular the local people who make the world the special place it is. The exploitation of prostitutes is completely contrary to this philosophy. Our CEOs have the right to expel any member of the group if drugs are found in their possession or if they use prostitutes.

Travel Insurance

Travel Insurance: Travel insurance is compulsory in order to participate on any of our trips. When travelling on a group trip, you will not be permitted to join the group until evidence of travel insurance has been sighted by your CEO, who will take note of your insurance details. When selecting a travel insurance policy please bear in mind that all clients must have medical coverage and that we require a minimum coverage of USD 200,000 for repatriation and emergency rescue. We strongly recommend that the policy also covers personal liability, cancellation, curtailment and loss of luggage and personal effects. If you have credit card insurance we require proof of purchase of the trip (a receipt of credit card statement) with a credit card in your name. Contact your bank for details of their participating insurer, the level of coverage and emergency contact telephone number.

Planeterra-The G Adventures Foundation

Through our commitment to responsible tourism we have developed the Planeterra Foundation, a non-profit organization dedicated to making a positive difference in the lives of people and communities around the world through support of international charities, local organizations and community projects in the places that we visit on our tours. G Adventures matches all individual donations and pays all administration costs, which means that 100% of each donation is doubled and goes directly to support our projects. For more information about Planeterra and the projects we support, or to make a donation, please visit www.planeterra.org

Planeterra Dollar-A-Day Program
Our Dollar-A-Day Program provides travellers with the opportunity to help us give back to the people and places visited on our tours by donating one dollar per day for the duration of their tour. 100% of these proceeds will go directly to support our Planeterra projects.

To participate in this program please indicate at the time of booking that you would like to participate in G Adventures’ Dollar-A-Day program, either by clicking the check box online, or by advising your G Adventures specialist or travel agent. (Note: Donation will be charged in the currency of your booking)

Feedback

After your travels, we want to hear from you! Your feedback information is so important to us that we'll give you 5% off the price of your next G Adventures trip if your feedback is completed on-line within 30 days of finishing your trip. Your tour evaluation will be e-mailed to you 24 hours after the conclusion of your trip. If you do not receive the tour evaluation link in the days after your tour has finished, please drop us a line at customerservice@gadventures.com and we will send it on to you.

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Stay current on how our company invests in our global community through our foundation – Planeterra. Sign up for Planeterra's monthly news to learn more about how to give back and support the people and places we love to visit.

Travel Forum - The Watering Hole

Be sure to stop by The Watering Hole, our adventure travel forum. If you're interested in meeting others booked on your upcoming trip, check out the Departure Lounge section of our forum and introduce yourself. Otherwise, just drop in at anytime to share some travel tips, ask questions, meet other travellers and quench your thirst for travel. Our forum is located at wateringhole.gadventures.com.