Sun, sea and an abundance of locally-farmed oysters make for a foodie trip to remember
With over 1,000m of coastline on the mainland alone, it’s no wonder that Croatia is celebrated as one of the Continent’s seafood meccas.
Regional ‘catch of the day’ specialities in this corner of the Balkans include octopus salad, shrimps na buzaru (pan fried in olive oil and garlic) and black risotto made with cuttlefish and squid.
And for those who enjoy indulging in shellfish, a visit to Croatia’s annual Festival of Oysters is a must.
This two-day festival – taking place on 21st and 22nd March in 2020 – is held in the quaint, neighbouring medieval towns of Ston and Mali Ston on the Pelješac peninsula.
Just a 45-minute drive from Dubrovnik, the event makes for a scenic day trip from the iconic walled city.
As well as the classic combination of freshly shucked oysters with a squeeze of lemon, visitors can also sample other takes on the mighty mollusk, including oyster soup and oyster fritters. All dishes can be washed down with some of the Pelješac peninsula’s finest wines.
Once you’ve had you’re fill of the local delicacies there’s a varied entertainment programme to enjoy, including Dalmatian music and folklore performances.
The festival is held in March as this is when the local oysters – known as European Flat Oysters – are at their fullest and most flavoursome.
Farmed by hand, only small quantities are produced annually. The majority end up in local restaurants, with just a few tonnes exported to the likes of France, Italy and Spain.
Ston is also home to one of Croatia’s most picturesque sandy beaches: Prapratno Cove. Set against a stunning pine forest backdrop, it boasts crystal-clear waters and uninterrupted views out to the island of Mljet, as well as on-site changing facilities.
In celebration of this years Festival of Oysters, tailor-made tour operator Lightfoot Travel is offering a three-night Dubrovnik break. It includes a wine tasting tour in the Peljesac region, a private tour of Ston and an oyster farm tasting visit. Priced from £790 per person, it also includes a stay at Dubrovnik’s five-star Hotel Bellevue, flights between London and private transfers between the airport and the hotel.
Day one of the Festival of Oysters will take place on the seafront on Mali Ston, while day two will be held in Ston’s main square. Both days run from 11am to 4pm. To enquire about Lightfoot Travel’s Dubrovnik break, call +44(0)203 9505105.