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Things To Do In Croatia Written By Locals
I’m often asked what there is to do in Croatia. And after almost a decade of living in Croatia, I can tell you that there are so many ways to experience the magic of Croatia; it can be overwhelming to figure out what to do in Croatia.
Meander the warrens of centuries-old cobbled streets, discovering UNESCO Croatia sites as you go. Spend a day or even weeks mesmerized by the turquoise waters of the Adriatic Sea as you sail the many islands of Croatia – we love Korcula Island.
Alternatively, perhaps you’d like to go for an adventure and hike, cycle, or raft in one of the eight stunning national parks. Or maybe the newest fad of dental tourism in Croatia or life as a digital nomad intrigues you.
And that’s just for starters. Creating a list of the top things to do in Croatia is a virtually never-ending task.
However, before making the trip, ensure you have all the essential travel necessities to make your Croatia vacation much more comfortable and memorable.
As someone who lives in Croatia, here are my tips for Croatia and the must-see things! Consider working some into your itinerary!
Visit Croatia’s Best Beaches
The most well know one would have to be Zlatni Rat Beach on the island of Brač, which has a long golden pebble tip stretching out to the Adriatic Sea like a hand reaching out for more wine (or beer, you choose).
The shape of the half-kilometer beach continually changes (albeit ever so slightly), forming the most unusual shape. Zlatni Rat is sometimes referred to as the Golden Horn or Golden Cape beach and is regularly named one of the most beautiful (and strangest) beaches globally. Zlatni Rat beach is on Brač Island, just four kilometers from the attractive town of Bol, Croatia. This is a phenomenal option if you’re after a unique beach destination and researching things to do in Croatia in July or August.
Truffle Hunting In Istria
My truffle hunting experience in Motovun was one of the best days I traveled in Croatia in my five years of living in Croatia. I suggest you go truffle hunting with Miro, the owner of Miro Tartufi. Don’t worry if you don’t know what to do, though. He and his dogs do all the real work!
Miro offers guided tours through the Motovun forest, taking you through stunning scenery on the hunt for those famous black and white truffles. Do not stress, though, if you do not find many truffles in your search – the Miro family has plenty back at the house.
Truffles are famous worldwide, and the Istrian truffle is renowned for fetching some of the highest world prices. But, those little fungi are not easy to find – but oh-so-fun!
Be sure to wear good flat shoes on the hunt, and wear long pants if possible – as you are in the forest and are rummaging around nature. You’ll be more comfortable that way.
You can combine truffles and the magic of cycling on a tour like this, where you’ll get a unique experience and truffle hunt simultaneously.
Tick Off UNESCO World Heritage Sites
Are you not sure what to see in Croatia? Well, for a small country of just over 56,000 square kilometers, you may be surprised to know that there are ten (yes, that’s right, ten!) Croatian UNESCO World Heritage sites you can experience and explore.
There used to be eight Croatia UNESCO World Heritage Sites until 2017, when two more were added to the list, bringing the total to ten. In the meantime, another ten sites are currently considered world heritage. For now, however, they remain on the “Tentative List.” We included a handful of the most interesting ones at the end of this post, too, as they may well become actual UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Croatia shortly.
These world-class heritage sights in Croatia make great places to visit in fall and spring when the summer crowds have dissipated.
- The historic city of Trogir
- Old City of Dubrovnik
- Stari Grad Plain, Hvar
- Plitvice Lakes National Park
- Stećci – Medieval Tombstones Graveyards
- The Cathedral of St James in Šibenik
- Historical Complex of Split with the Palace of Diocletian
- Venetian Works Of Defense Between The 16th And 17th Centuries
- Episcopal Complex of the Euphrasian Basilica in the Historic Centre of Poreč
- Ancient And Primeval Beech Forests Of The Carpathians And Other Regions Of Europe
If you’re coming to Croatia in summer and would rather not brave the masses in peak season, you could also visit some of the lesser-known sites to see in Croatia that have been submitted to the tentative UNESCO list. These include:
- The fortified walls and salt pans in Ston and Mali Ston’s towns are less than an hour from Dubrovnik by car.
- The Istrian hilltop town of Motovun.
- The historical nucleus of Varazdin, north of Zagreb, which the New York Times named one of the top places to visit in Croatia
While visiting Croatia, don’t forget to check out the UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage list while traveling Croatia and learning about Croatian culture as you travel.
- City of Trogir
- Old City of Dubrovnik
- Plitvice Lakes National Park
- Cathedral of St James in Šibenik
- Historical Complex of Split with the Palace of Diocletian
- Euphrasian Basilica in the Historic Centre of Poreč
You can find more about each of the UNESCO Croatia sites here.
Sail The High Seas
When a country has over 1,000 islands and one of the wealthiest archipelagos in the world, don’t miss your chance to sail along the coast. Island exploration is one of the best – and arguably the single greatest – things to do in Croatia.
Spending time at sea is one of those epic Croatia tourist attractions. I’d dare say that a Croatian vacation without sea action would be sacrilege. Even if you can only spare a day, it’s blissfully worth it. Recommended islands to visit are Korcula, Hvar, Brac, Cres, Krk, and Mljet, and the family-friendly islands of the Zadar Archipelago.
You can combine the best of Croatia, sea, and land by spending time sailing the Adriatic Coast and making stops along your way to explore the mainland. For help choosing a sailing route, we compiled this guide to sailing Croatia. You can also take advantage of ready-made water tours. For example, this Five Island Speedboat Tour features the Blue Cave and Hvar. It will allow you to see a lot of the coast in one day, stopping at five islands while leaving time for swimming and exploring charming island towns.
While sailing, we recommend you try Konoba Opat, a restaurant that only serves fresh fish caught by local fishermen. Once you anchor your vessel and take a seat, your eyes will be drawn out to the blue bay that seems to go forever. Mr. Chasing the Donkey claims it to be one of his best food experiences in Croatia.
Explore Croatia’s 8 National Parks
Croatia has a total of eight national parks and one UNESCO Geopark, and you should make sure you see at least one of these while on holiday in Croatia.
You’ll draw in an abundance of fresh, crisp, or sea mountain air as you breathe in. You’ll hear the crunching of leaves underfoot, coupled with the sound of waterfalls in the distance. Birds will be chirping, and you’ll be relaxed and without a care in the world. Of all the ‘must-visit places in Croatia,’ the national parks are sure to satisfy the whole family.
I can’t single out any ONE of the national parks as being the best – but the most popular is Plitvice Lakes, National Park. If you like being outdoors and in nature, a national park is one of the most incredible Croatia places you could visit.
Plitvice Lakes National Park
Many agree that the most stunning of all of the national parks in Croatia is Plitvice Lakes, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Plitvice Lakes is often one of those top 5 places to visit in Croatia lists yearly.
I’d recommend traveling from Zadar to Plitvice Lakes as it’s the most straightforward. It’s only two hours by bus from Zagreb. Getting from Dubrovnik to Plitvice National Park is also possible – although long.
Meander along Plitvice’s wooden plank trails and admire the glistening waterfalls crashing into the ever-changing colors of the sixteen interconnected lakes below. Just be sure to bring your camera; it’s a genuinely spectacular park and among the most popular destinations in Croatia.
As this park is one of the most visited attractions in Croatia, it makes sense to take a guided tour to be sure not to miss a thing!
Krka National Park
The Plitvice Lakes vs. Krka discussion is an ongoing debate, and there is never one clear winner. Others might consider Krka National Park more fun to visit. We have this post to help you choose which one might suit you.
Not far from the Dalmatian port city of Split is the best place to take a day trip to Krka National Park. Krka is complete with medieval fortresses, waterfalls, and boat excursions.
The other Croatian national parks also make great additions to your what to see and do in Croatia. Especially Paklenica National Park, just 40 kilometers from the low-cost carrier airport, Zadar, is well worth going to. Paklenica National Park is home to Croatia’s largest mountain, the Velebit, which rises sharply from the sea’s edge and is a mountain climbers’ paradise.
You can make many day trips, from Dubrovnik to one of the parks. If you want to see them all, four of the eight parks are best reached from the Zadar region. So, use that as a base. You might want to consider private transfer companies that can arrange transport for much less than you think.
- Plitvice Lakes National Park
- Mljet National Park – book a Mljet tour here!
- Krka National Park – book a Krka tour here!
- Risnjak National Park
- Paklenica National Park
- Sjeverni Velebit National Park
- Kornati Islands National Park – book a Kornati tour here!
- Brijuni National Park – book a Brijuni tour here!
Take In The Amazing View At Sljeme (Mount Medvednica)
For those looking for a more active holiday, we encourage you to check out the view atop Sljeme. Just twenty miles from the center of Zagreb, it is a great adventure to get away from the hustle and bustle of beautiful nature.
It is an excellent place for hiking in summer, and in winter, the mountains are filled with skiers and snowboarders and a heaping of fresh snow.
Walk Tito’s Secret Tunnels
Did you know tunnels were built on the side of the Velebit Mountains during the 1950s as a secret place of refuge had the USSR attacked Croatia via air? These fantastic, mysterious bunkers have been excavated and are available for tourists to wander through, providing a unique Dalmatia experience.
If you’re heading to Paklenica National Park, don’t miss your chance to experience the history beneath the mountain’s strong facade at the same time.
Get Outdoors (& We Don’t Mean The Beach)
Croatia has some magnificent beaches and makes for an ideal place to kick back and relax. But why not mix it up with fun outdoor adventure sports, too? Add two things to your list: zip lining and rafting on the Cetina River. The zip line in Omiš is the fastest one in Croatia and goes a whopping 65 km/h. Now that will get your vacation started.
Party At Carnival
Croatia Carnival or Maškare season hits each February. Visiting some astounding Carnival destinations in Croatia has to be one of the best things to do in the low season, one of the top Croatia attractions in winter.
Croatians are known to take their carnival very seriously, as people in every region, city, and village in Croatia, regardless of their age, participate in the spirit of Maškare. According to ancient legends, this is a centuries-old tradition that goes back to ancient times when ferocious masks kept away the forces of evil.
In each city, the organizers spend an entire year putting together an exciting program with various events and performances for visitors from all over Croatia and abroad.
Go On A Road Trip In Croatia
If you are not sailing on the Adriatic, the best way to travel to Croatia is by car. It makes sense that you want to hit the road with so many magical hilltop towns in Istria and rustic villages across the country, only accessible by car.
Hiring a car in Croatia is much easier than you think, and with panoramic views hugging roads along the coast, you’ll explore Croatia in ways you can’t by bus or train.
Hire A Car
Our rental car company of choice is RentalCars.com. They have an easy-to-use search system (as seen below) and excellent customer service.
A private transfer is a superb option if you don’t want to drive. It will cost you a little more than renting a car, but that little extra will allow you to have a stress-free journey. If you book with Octopus Transfer Croatia, your English-speaking professional driver will pick you up from your accommodation and take you anywhere you need to go. Intercity transfers are often popular, for instance, Zadar to Split.
Hike To Fabulous Heights
Aside from beaches and extreme sports opportunities, Croatia also boasts excellent options for hiking. Mainly inland Dalmatia, with its beautiful karst landscape.
Part of the Dinaric Alps, it boasts a priceless wealth of flora and fauna. It is one of the last sanctuaries of wildlife in Europe. These unspoiled natural beauties and all their secrets are yet to be discovered.
Climb magnificent mountains and enjoy their scents, sounds, colors, and unforgettable panoramic views. Hiking in Croatia allows you to enjoy the freedom of its wildlife: a flying falcon, the howling of wolves, and rock climbing chamois (a type of goat). The blend of sea, islands, shores, and wildlife inland Dalmatia makes it a unique, small region of great opportunity and diversity.
Come To Croatia For A Medical Vacation
Most people visit Croatia to enjoy the stunning natural beauties and relax; some come for the fantastic food, and some want to experience an adventure or do sports, but what if there is more? Did you know that medical tourism in Croatia is on the rise?
You can enjoy many things in Croatia, and while you are here, you can also do something good for yourself and your health. Dental tourism in Croatia is one area within the medical tourism industry that offers many options in Croatia.
Discover Off-The-Beaten-Path Places
Traveling to Croatia guarantees you a unique and memorable holiday experience, and everyone has now heard of Dubrovnik, Split, Zadar, and a stack of our beautiful islands, but how many of these have you heard about?
Kayaking The Turquoise Waters Of The Adriatic
For half a day (or more or less if you wish), you can paddle leisurely around the small peninsula of Split, learn about the city’s history and the country, dip in the water to swim and cool off.
If you’re unsure about kayaking alone, we suggest you try this adventure on a small group tour with friendly guides who arrange the kayaks for you. And it’s not just in Split – you can kayak almost anywhere along the Adriatic in Croatia, and it’s a great way to spend the day as a family in Croatia.
Sample All Types Of Food & Wine In Croatia
Okay, that’s a given. But where? Food in Croatia is diverse and glorious and sampling; is one of the most fun things to do in Croatia during any vacation. Croatian cuisine is exquisite and varied, from fish and seafood in Dalmatia to lamb in Kvarner and Zagreb steaks. Foodies should head to Istria because that’s where it’s at! We have a list of the top places to eat in Croatia here.
Croatia offers plenty of delicious dishes to try, so do not pass up the fresh seafood along the coast. Freshly caught squid, octopus, sardines, or prawns are all grilled to perfection, lightly fried, or added to mouth-watering soups and pasta dishes, making it nearly impossible to push oneself away from the table.
Pair any meal with a chilled local beer, such as the Osječko or Karlovačko, on a sunny patio for the perfect Croatian afternoon.
- Traditional Croatian Food To Look For On Menus
- Here Is What To Eat (And Where) In Istria
- Here Is What To Eat (And Where) In Slavonia
- Must Not Miss Wines & Wineries In Croatia
Do you love wine? One of Croatia’s best places to enjoy wine is the Pelješac Peninsula. Though it is only home to about 8,000 people, the Pelješac peninsula is now coming into its stride as a travel destination.
This region has long been known for its delicious shellfish, dry red wines, and gorgeous beaches and is the key place to take an actual adult holiday. Wine enthusiasts should stop at Korta Katarina Winery in Orebić and check out this list of things to do in Pelješac for more ideas.
The peninsula lies conveniently between Split and Dubrovnik, making it a fantastic day trip from both coastal cities.
Sample Sparkling Wines in Plešivica
Although smaller and arguably less known than other Croatian wine regions, Plešivica stands out because of its outstanding sparkling wines. Located in the gently rolling Samobor mountain range, merely 30 kilometers from Zagreb, this area produces the best sparkling wines in Croatia. Some people even call it the “Champagne of Croatia.”
A visit to this underrated Croatian wine region is one of the best things to do in Croatia for wine enthusiasts. However, it’s not just sparkling wines in Plešivica. You can also find various other wines here, from chardonnay, riesling, and Pinot Gris to Gewurztraminer and sauvignon.
Find A Konoba
While on holiday in Croatia, you’ll find something to treat your taste buds no matter where you are. (make sure to read the point above if you skipped it!). So, what is a konoba?
A konoba is a traditional restaurant and is often much cheaper than a restaurant. Konobas will offer you traditional specialties. For example, when in Dalmatia, ensure you order any fresh fish you see on offer. Trust us, a Dalmatian chef knows how to grill fish to perfection, so it’s something well worth sampling.
You’ll want to try a unique Croatian dish, a black risotto made from cuttlefish called crni rižot. If you are not a fan of seafood, be sure to order pašticada, a traditional beef dish marinated for 24 hours in garlic, wine, and herbs. Pašticada has a rich dark sauce served with homemade gnocchi and is best enjoyed with a glass of Dalmatian Plavac Mali red wine.
Other must-try foods at a konoba are octopus salad and definitely try some poljički soparnik in Dalmatia. Just please don’t blame me for your expanding waistline!
Local tip: don’t let the abundance of pizza ovens seduce you. Although the pizza in Croatia is indeed fantastic, you also need to be on the lookout for small, often family-run local restaurants or go to one of Croatia’s best restaurants.
Attend A Festival
Whenever we travel to new places (and we’ve been to 25 countries and have lost count of the cities now!), we love to find and plan our trips around local festivals. At festivals, you experience what a place is about, especially when it’s a food festival. Food is an essential part – some would even say the very core – of a particular culture.
Have A Full Family Adventure In Croatia
You can find family fun across Croatia, and many great family hotels can choose from. With my two small boys in tow, I have been on a mission to find the best things to see in Croatia that please the smallest to the oldest. Here is just the beginning of what a Croatia to-do list with kids would look like.
- Make a Sandcastle & Then Play Beach Volleyball
- Swim Under a Waterfall
- Travel Scavenger Hunt
- Get Your Teenagers Off Their Smartphones
- Photo Jeep Safari
- Take a Ferry Ride or go Sailing in Croatia
- Skip the Beach, and Hit a Water Park
- Snorkeling in Croatia
- Water Activities on The River Zrmanja
- Dance in The Dark
- Let The Kids Roam Free
- Discover 24 Stunning Waterfalls
Croatia With Kids
Now that you know what to visit in Croatia with the kids, you’ll need to decide if Croatia is the right choice for your family using our guide to Croatia for families. You may also like these top things for kids to do in Croatia.
Traveling to Croatia with children is a no-brainer. There are loads of family resorts & hotels for family holidays in Croatia that’ll accommodate your family without any problems.
What? I know that sounds odd, but do you know how close you are to other parts of the Balkans that make for excellent day trips?
Surrounded by Slovenia, Hungary, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Serbia, and Montenegro, Croatia is an excellent base for exploring the rest of the western Balkan peninsula. Day trips from Zagreb include fabulous destinations like Ljubljana and Lake Bled, both in Slovenia. In contrast, day trips from Dubrovnik take you to magnificent places like Mostar in Bosnia-Herzegovina and the Bay of Kotor in Montenegro.
The latter two are UNESCO World Heritage Sites are among the Balkans’ most fabulous places to visit.
Another recommended excursion is to Bosnia-Herzegovina’s Medjugorje, a renowned Catholic pilgrimage site.
Join A Cooking Class
There are several cooking classes to undertake while in Croatia. If you have a soft spot for fantastic food and wine and want to learn how to make the most delicious, tasty meat using a traditional method, head to Zadar. You’ll find a bespoke, hands-on cooking class and wine tour, perfect for mid-size groups (kids included).
Discover Unique Things To Do In Croatia
If you’re looking for unique Croatia points of interest or alternatives to the more famous places in Croatia for your upcoming vacation, this next part is for you!
There are dozens of unique experiences in Croatia that you’ve never had – or maybe even heard of. What about:
- The Sinjska Alka: a knights tournament
- Rub Gregory of nin’s big toe – Grgur Ninski
- Enjoy an electric car ride in Kunjevci
- Track down dinosaur footprints in the Brijuni Islands
- Cycle the Parenzana
- Town of hum celebrating the election of the mayor
- Walk the second-longest wall on the planet, Mali Ston
- Cross the hanging bridge at Kriznica
- Watch a donkey race at Sali
- Milk a donkey
Horse-Riding / Ranch Visit
Every kid loves animals and the great outdoors in my experience – and most of us, big kids, too! There is no need to keep shushing the kids to be quiet and use an indoor voice at a ranch. There are many ranches around Slavonia. I give you my parent seal of approval on these:
- Ranč Ramarin
- State Stud Farm Đakovo
- Ranč Čondić
Get Spiritual In Croatia
I’ve never heard anyone outside Croatia tell me they plan to go to Marija Bistrica. Never has anyone asked me how to get there or what to do there. But if you like religious stops of the Catholic kind, head to Marija Bistrica. One of the top tourist destinations in Croatia for Catholics, this city holds a unique charm and sense of divine healing that I’ve not yet felt anywhere else in Croatia. Be sure to take a look for yourself.
Absolute Must-Do Things In Croatia: Local Tips
Come In The Off-Season
Prices drop at least 30%, there are fewer people, and you’ll get to meet the locals. Winter in Croatia is by far the least busy time of year and is always overlooked.
Granted, the Dalmatian Coast is all but a ghost town, and the Adriatic Sea is freezing cold, but you have skiing, spas, and many festivals to keep you busy. Shhh, don’t tell anyone, but Croatia in September is impressive.
You’ll just fall in love with Croatia’s old cities and the raw coastline on your visit, and I guess you’ll need two more trips (at least!) to experience all that is on offer for your family.
Or, consider coming in the spring when temperatures warm up and check out all Croatia’s Easter traditions.
How To Get Around Croatia
Type in your to and from destinations below to see what options are available. You can then book online if you’re ready:
Accommodation In Croatia
There are numerous options for where to sleep while on your vacation in Croatia. There are many hotels, motels, camping grounds, and apartments. We keep updating our guides with the best ones here. Once you’ve decided what to see in Croatia, use that guide to find a great deal.
- Best Glamping In Croatia
- Where To Stay In Split
- Where To Stay In Dubrovnik
- Where To Stay In Zadar
- Where To Stay In Sibenik
- Where To Stay With Kids
- Where To Stay In Rovinj
Currency In Croatia?
The official currency in Croatia is the euro. You can find foreign currency exchange centers throughout all cities and towns. Currency exchange is also provided in banks, post offices, and tourist agencies.
Are there other top things to do in Croatia that you loved that we missed off this list? Are there any critical places of interest in Croatia that we need to add? Let us know.Share
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Such a lovely post, thanks for sharing!
Soon I am going there and you covered everything.
Thanks for sharing,
Beautiful country with extraordinary people, the photos are truly dreamy postcards. I adore Croatia,
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This was the best page I found when looking. Thanks so very much for all of these very useful tips.
In holidays if you are planning to go Croatia then it is the best choice of yours moreover there are lots of things which you can do in holidays in Croatia beside this you can plan a day Island Tours in Mljet which is great way to spend your valuable time.
Thanks for sharing it’s really helpful for me,
This is really informative and interesting post. Thanks for sharing this valuable post.
It looks fantastic thanks for posting!!
wow!! so many great things
really want to visit Croatia and share the experience with my friends.
Croatia is a great city, and spending a holiday in croatia is a great move. I have been making plans for my next holiday vacations with family and croatia was also in my list. After reading your article i am pretty sure that this will gonna be my next destination. Thanks mate for helping me out about my next destination
I completely agree with everything in this guide. As someone born in Croatia, I can highly recommend everyone to visit National Park Plitvice Lakes. And then, Istria, of course. Here’s one interesting detail about Pula: with its population of cca. 60.000 inhabitants, Pula is a small town where at least 50 bands actively plays at every moment. Pula is strongly connected with one certain type of music. In fact, it is popularly known as Pula Rock City. In other words, when it comes to “why is certain place worth visitng”, music-related things represent a great variety of motives.
I am interested in visiting the Island of Pag where my Dad was born. I have had very little success in locating his brothers or sisters. They may have pasted by now. I feel i must have a relative still living there. His birth name was Bennetto Fabijanic and he came to the US in 1920’s or so. He died when I was 4 and so many papers had been lost. I really love the music and my Dad played the Tambuitza, a gord shaped instrument. Do you have any way of looking up his Family at the Town Hall?
If you go to the Island, you’ll be able to go to the Registrar’s Office (matični ured) and look him / his family up.
Great Article.as someone just have starting out in the world traveling i need all the tips i can get.
thank you so much.
Thank you for sharing so much free information!!!!
Always a dream of mine to visit Croatia so these tips are awesome!! Thank you for sharing and happy 2019!
Nice info. This is very impressive post & useful information,
Great post SJ Begonja. Very helpful
Thank you for this – so helpful
I’m really interested in UNESCO World Heritage sites. Visiting ten sites is on my bucket list.
“Čvarak Festival” in Karanac, multiple ” Fišijada’s”, hunting, international bike routes, and other authenthic village turizam activities in and around Osijek and Baranja.
Croatia is my dream place to visit. It seems looks so beautiful and amazing place. There are so many places to visit and explore there.
I always wanted to visit Croatia, this is my dream place to visit. After reading your amazing blog and find so many beautiful places to visit. Now, I desperately wanted to go there and explore heaven on earth.
Thanks for sharing with us.
Oh my God! It’s truly heaven on earth! Everything looks very wild and super natural! What are we waiting for? Get our luggage and… let’s go, honey!
I really enjoyed reading this! Croatia sounds like such an incredible country that I would absolutely love to explore. Seems like there are so many beautiful places and things to do! I have seen the most amazing photos online, and would love to bring my camera there on a photography trip 🙂
Croatia just blew my mind after reading your post, SJ! I have always thought Croatia was beautiful but I never expected it to be this lovely! Your post is truly a wonderful source of information as it is detailed and we can easily navigate to the sections. We’d definitely try and book to Croatia this year!
The perfect guide to Croatia! Thanks for sharing a wonderful article.
Awesome place. Definitely going to our bucketlist, a must for the family.
Great to here i am deciding to visit Croatia next month and i’m collecting information about this country and your this article really helpful for me …!!! Thanks…..!!!
Visiting to Croatia had always been on my bucket list..I have been to 30 countries in Europe but till now not being able to visit Croatia… ????
Didn’t know Croatia was this beautiful! Lovely scenery and amazing photos!
Croatia is beautiful and Zlatni Rat in brac island is one of the best beaches in Europe!
Wow great post! Travelling is like creating memories and life. Don’t forget to visit the Sunshine coast while travelling Australia.
A perfect tour guide for Croatia.I think that this would be very helpful for those who are going for the first time as it was for me.
It seems that Croatia offers its tourists with something really amazing in terms of traveling opportunities.
Sailing along the coast for me is the best way to see Croatia.
It really helps for planning vacation in Croatia. It’s good to know as many details as possible.
Reading this makes me keen to return to Croatia, which I have enjoyed visiting several times. I thought Istria and Zagreb were among the highlights of my visits. I hope to spend more time in national parks in future.
This article is really very interesting – helped us loads.
Thanks for so informative review post. About the currency in your experiences, exchanging in banks and outside, which one is better in Croatia?
Sorry, I do not understand the question…
I reccommend visiting Kornati by sailboat.
Sailing through Croatia is definitely a must! Great post, very insightful x
Very good post about Croatia. I will definitely use it soon as I’m preparing to visit Croatia in next few months. Thank you Sarah
Croatia is beautiful place to visit. Thanks for sharing such beautiful pictures.
My girlfriend and I have recently been to Hungary, Austria, Czech Republic, Spain, and Portugal. We have our eyes on Croatia for our next destination. I’ve only recently developed an urge to travel and now it’s all I want to do.
My wife and I returned from Croatia a few weeks ago. We did Dubrovnik-Split-Brac-Plitvice on a 4 days trip.
Hi there we are an older active couple, love wandering around atmospheric old towns,photography,cafe’s and bars not interested in beaches and swimming. Will be in Croata in September and wanted to run itinerary by you after Istria we have 2 nts in Zadar, will daytrip to Plitvice,2 nts in Sibenik,day trip to Primosten,4 nts Split, day trip to Brac,Trogir, & makarska or Solta , 2 nts Hvar,2 nts Korcula,7 nts Dubrovnik,day trip to Mostar,Montenegro & Cavtat does this sound ok ,are these all worth seeing and have I allocated enough time in each place?. Would appeciate your advice by email. Thanks heaps, Sue
Hi Sue, you can reach us here for 1:1 travel advice.
Nice write and thorough. Though I’ve been to both Zagreb and the Dalmatian Coast, and I remember when in Zagreb, all the Croatians even told me to just go to the coast! I think my favorite spots in Croatia will also be Vis and Stari Grad, hands down.
Ohh how cheeky of those Croats. Zagreb offers so much more now than it did years ago.
There is a good one here:
I am coming home to Croatia after being away for 15 years, your site has been so insightful and made planning a breeze. Thanks for your efforts Sara.
Wow, didn’t realize Croatia was so beautiful and so many things to do! I will need to make time for a trip there.
I’m writing to let you know of the cool experience we had thanks to all of your tips, we left before you published this sadly, but your blog is very helpful. Thanks.
Wow! Beautiful Croatia! I never thought Croatia have this beautiful places. I guess it’s time to schedule a vacation in Croatia. Thank you for sharing this!
When is the best time to visit Croatia particularly to see Plitvice lakes? Thank you, excellent post! Saving this for future reference.
Really informative blog post it helps to prepare us for the amazing things to do in Croatia before traveling. Great thanks
Uhm, yes please! I would love to do all those things on the list, especially Korcula Island. Looks like a very interesting place.
Croatia is stunning and the people are very friendly, Sarah and Mate! Great tips for an unforgettable holiday there.
Nice travel blog post. Croatia is the best holiday destination for families
I had an amazing time in Croatia last year – absolute bliss – and can’t wait to go back. There’s just so much to do and see, I think Korcula, Vis and Mljet are on my bucket list next time 🙂
I truely love Croatia and we traveled there from Germany last summer. It was an unforgettable trip!
Our favorite was the Plitvice National Park, which is for sure my favorite National Park in the world so far!
Thank you for your great content!
Informative and amazing blog ! thanks for sharing with us!
wonderful places great post i love Croatia thanks
Krka was the one I saw the other night
Guys you rock, thanks so much for all of the awesome-sauce.
Thanks really helpful. Will certainly share website with my friends
great Post..!! this blog is really amazing helpful to me. because i’m planning to visit Croatia next year. it’s my favourite destination.
thanks for sharing this information with us.
Thanks for the great ideas!! I just got back from a 10 day trip with my 3 20-somethings, what a great country!
So, highlights for me: I hope your readers find this helpful.
-Dubrovnik (walk on the walls! do the kayak trip around the walls, dreamy Banje beach!). Coolest place EVER!
-Plitvice National Park (yes, get there early, really does make a difference), fantastic, worth the trip (did I say get there early?)
-Krka waterfall (a little disappointing after Plitvice’s waterfall overload and we parked too far away from the boat)
-ziplining in Omis (thanks for the idea, so fun! for those in good shape)
-walking the sea promenade in Zadar at sunset (great summer experience! Hundreds of people watching the sun go down over the water, wow)
-equally loved Trogir and Split, both are GREAT towns for an evening walk through the alleyways and souvenir shops, lots of history and atmosphere. In Trogir I highly recommend a new small hotel, the Bifora Heritage Hotel. Gorgeous renovation, great service, nice breakfast, perfect location and parking.
-and finally Brac island’s town Bol. The Zlatny Rat beach was gorgeous (though it’s a pebble beach not sand as it looks in the photos), clear clear water. Get there early in summer as the crowds turn it into a circus around noon. We stayed all day!
More TIPS: Fig jam and also candied almonds! Stick to wonderful fish dishes, oven-baked pizzas and pastas, which are great and everywhere. Don’t expect a “salad” as many of us are used to. The cucumbers are weird and there’s almost no lettuce! Don’t expect to save by having tap water, most restaurants won’t serve it. Pack light! We found ourselves lugging luggage up endless steps all over. Bring water SHOES (not flipflops) for the pebbly beaches and Krka. Essential! Also, rent a car! Find out which ferries carry vehicles, it’s relatively cheap surprisingly and a great experience (we did Split to Supetar, Brac and left from Sumartin to Makarska on the mainland). Each direction was about $US40 for the car+4 adults. One more, be aware of the unexpected border crossing into Bosnia (and out) on the way south to Dubrovnik. It’s not a problem at all to pass through but the traffic can be very time-consuming!
Zdravo. What you guys think would be the cheapest city to stay in Croatia as a digital nomad above 50k inhabitants?
No idea, sorry!
This article is really helpful to me. I planned to trip next holiday on Croatia. Thanks for sharing.
Hey there, I really Love your Blog you just describe things very real? Do you know Juri and his Family, having their little place to rest at the Vrana Lake between Pakostane and Drage? We really love it there. Best Wishes from Germany
Thanks so much! I dont know them, but that is a great spot.
Trying to send info on the “Need help” page. It keeps saying my date format is invalid…. What is the correct format? I’ve tried everything I can think of!!
Hmm, it’s working for us and others (emails are coming in) – email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we’d be glad to help you.
The date format is dd/mm/yyyy
I have now subscribed to your newsletter. I always wanted to visit Croatia.
I reside in South Africa in the Capital of the Western Cape which is Cape Town.
I have visited a lot of European and Asian countries. My father was born in the Czeck republic so in 2012 my youngest son and myself went to Olrichhov von Hajick to take his ashes. And then we travelled through Prague, Austria, Vienna and Italy and left Europe once again! Croatia has been on my wishlist for many years.
Last year in September I travelled to Ubud, Bali to a Women’s Retreat! This was outstanding because also of the people who are so humble and poor. It really broke my heart.
But I want to travel to Croatia in 2017. You say in your blog that September month is the best to travel. That for me is also September.
O yes! I also went to Dubai in September on my way back.
But not one of my friends can actually travel with me. I am retired and South Africans’s currency are really bad now. I will have a look at yours and decide if I can afford to visit Croatia.
Keep up the good work!
Croatia is an amazing country. Unfortunately it is not so famous. I moved to live here 1 year ago. I am glad with my choice. The nature is worth killing for. Greets!
Thanks for this big list, we can’t decide what to do. Do you have a suggestion for a travel agent in Croatia who can help us?
It’s allowed for sure! Just be sure to ask the captain the safest place to store it – as the boats are a tight fit 😀 Enjoy
Very informative site, thanks! Not sure if you do this, but could you suggest a 7 night route in September from Zagreb to Zagreb? I’m with my daughter and son 19 and 21 who like a bit of adventure, cute towns, great scenery, lots of water and beaches. I’m not too interested in Zagreb, would like to drive to Plitvice and Krka parks, Hvar island and ziplining in Omis and maybe some kayaking somewhere. Would love to see Dubrovnik but it seems too far. Does this sound about right? Missing something amazing? Would appreciate any input on scheduling this. Thanks!!
Sure, if you like to plan and book a holiday with us, you can reach us here:
Thank you a lot for so awesome blog about Croatia. My friend and I are going to visit Croatia at the end of August and now I know where to read about this amazing country.
What a great rundown of things to do and see in Croatia. Definitely worth saving, as you know Croatia is my summer destination! I didn’t know black cuttlefish risotto was a Croatian dish. We also have it in Italy and I LOVE it!
I think we have LOADS of food thanks to previous Italian rule 🙂 Enjoy your holidays here xx
Thanks for this list! Great resource 🙂 I will leave for a road trip through Croatia very soon (probably tomorrow 😉 ) and try to figure out where to go and what to do…
Thank you for this! What a great resource. Croatia is on our list. Pinned for later reference.
This list helps me to plan my trip for this summer. I’m from France but it’s too far to go there by car, I think I’ll rent a car. I just hope it’s not dangerous to drive there.
Not at all – there are plenty of people who speed, and overtake, but no worse than what I saw in France 😛 Enjoy Mat.
I love almost every place on Adriatic coast in Croatia. Nature is so beautiful and those little islands just amazing. I’ve been to Brijuni several times and Plitvice, you have to see it. The best city for my vacation is Makarska.
Excellent post! Croatia is truly a country that has everything to offer.
How can anyone argue with all of these ideas? I have no idea where to start now…
Sorry Gale, if you’d like help just ask.
This was… how do I say it? Kick-ass!! Thank you!
You really make it feel like there is no other place to be. Planning a trip for 2016 and cant wait.
Totally loved this post! We are so in love with Croatia! And if we were to retire and stay in any city in the world…it would be Zadar!
Ohh I need to go to Croatia again… there are still so many things I need to do. I so have to go to Brac Island 😀 <3
Happy new year to you 😀
Oh yes Brač is so gorgeous! Also try Vis 😀 Happy New Year to you also.
Good day! Your blog shows off so many wonderful places from my homeland and we love looking at it for idea. Appreciate it!
Now i’m grateful that i stumbled onto your website! We are planning a trip and i have so many new places to think about going now.
So glad to help Netty. If you need help putting all of the places into an itinerary, just shout out.
Thank you very much for this very informative blog you have about Croatia. It’s full of ideas and things to do. Would you suggest booking tours online while still in UK or would it be cheaper to do it locally once we’re in Croatia? We are a party of 3 adults and will staying in Split for only 5 days. Will definitely go to Diocletian Palace as suggested and also the old town. We’re also thinking of visiting Vis. I heard about the blue cave but not too sure if the trip would be suitable for my 68 y/o mum (this short holiday is actually a birthday treat for her (^_^)). Any advice is greatly appreciated. Thanks in advance!
Sorry I missed this – we took a blogging break. You can do either – depends how fluid your itinerary is.
This is a large selection of things to do and now i think that our 1 week vacation wont be enuf time. Wish we had more time.
We are looking to for tips for 2015, we will be sure to add many of these to our list now thanks.
You are very welcome. If ewe can help you in anyways, just email us or comment and I’ll try my best to help you.
All of these spots look gorgeous! I’d love to visit someday!
Thanks Ashley, I am sure you’d find something you’d love to keep you occupied.
The national parks look gorgeous! I never considered going to Croatia before, but after these pics…most definitely!!! Added to my list and thanks for the fun info on what to see!
Awesome, glad you liked it Kelly.
So much to do, Croatia always seemed so magnificent. I remember being in college and I met some tourists from Croatia, from then on I made screaming “Croatia!” part of a drinking game, I have yet to come and all the posts are so helpful! I hope once I get additional flight benefits I’ll make it, Delta doesn’t fly there yet!
Hurry up Delta!! What are they waiting for?? I’ll be sure to scream Croatia for you with my wine at dinner tonight 🙂
Hey Angelica! I flew from Croatia to NY and back with Delta just recently so…pack your bags! 🙂
Of course, there are Paris, Frankfurt, Muenchen, Amsterdam for (short) connecting flights but miles still work!
Great list of things to do in Croatia! Will definitely bookmark this, and hopefully we will be heading to Croatia some day soon! 🙂
Thanks Maria, there are so many things to do, you’ll find something to tickle your fancy!
Seeing this post just highlights why we need to visit Croatia. It has been on our list for so long but for some reason it keeps getting replaced with other destinations. Time to change that I feel.
I know how you feel, I do that with big places like London. Just never enough time for it all is there 🙂
I went to Croatia years and years ago, but you have sold it brilliantly here. Those views are absolutely fantastic (and I definitely fancy the fresh fish restaurant!)
Thanks Sarah, that’s kind of you. Who can say no to fresh fish? NOT ME!!!
What a lovely place you live in, I am now seeing how easy it is to fall in love with Croatia, I am enjoying your site, thank you
Thanks very much Jennifer. It sure is a pretty place to live and travel.
Loved this – some great information and easy to digest. Loved your photos. Wish I’d found your blog before we travelled to Croatia this year – but you’re giving me good reason to plan another trip. Thank you!
Thanks Johanna! Plenty of things to do in Croatia, come on back!
Ah yes! Congrats very helpful words to know. Come back soon!!
The more I read of your blog, the more I want to visit Croatia! All the photos you post are amazing. The beaches and national parks sound incredible!
Sorry… kind of…. okay I am not. HURRY up and come on over.
Wow! There are so many things to do in Croatia! I had no idea. I need to make sure that I add it to my Euro-Trip #3 list! 😀
I had no idea how beautiful Croatia really is. It’s one of the countries that’s been lurking on my wish list for some time but after reading this, it’s shot towards the top. I especially want to try the beef dish you mentioned.
Such a great resource and fabulous tips for Croatia – I’ll be bookmarking this for when I finally make it there!
I have been to Rovinj, Istria this May and Plitvicke lakes, and they are both Fantastic!!!
I want to visit Croatia in end of August and enjoy the seaside, but I am hesitating between Dubrovnik (1), Split + Hvar (2) or Zadar (3)…..
Can someone recommend?
If I have a week where is better to go?
And does it worth to make the 3 places in 1 trip?
I want something with the charm of Rovinj, but also with great turquoise (and sandy) beaches….
Lovely post! We had an amazing time in Croatia! Such a great country!
The Museum of Broken Dreams, while unique and interesting, is slightly over-rated as a must see venue.
You think? It’s so unique and sits in an area that most people visit anyways. It’s a must-see in my opinion. What would you suggest is a must-see?
The museum of broken relationships? I think it’s worth the visit and it’s situated in the very centre, so you don’t have to go far to see it.
Red and a Blue lakes in Imotski, Vranjaca cave, sunrise in the mountains of Dalmatia with the sea view 🙂 breathtaking
Yay! We just went to these lakes this week… time for me to make a new post!
I’ve been hesitating for some time if I should go to Portugal or Croatia this summer and after reading this post I can’t skip Croatia, that’s for sure. It seems so beautiful and yet affordable. The National Parks are impressive and I would definitely do some hiking there.
I only knew of Dubrovnik before I started reading your blog but now I can gladly say I know a whole lot more about Croatia and can’t wait to visit. I just love all the variety of things to do and the gorgeous landscape. I’m leaning towards the National Parks and the UNESCO sites.
I loved Croatia especially Zadar but Plitvice was awesome and Dubrovnik made it all worthwhile. If it was warmer in winter I would spend three moths there. Very safe country and very nice people.
You should visit Krka and also Zagreb during the Advent because it is magical
This is all spectacular. I am salivating at the prospects, except that the Euro appreciated against the ruble by about 25% in just 3 months, and a Shengen visa might very hard to get at the moment due to my job… >.<
HI Esther, thanks, yes we’d be happy for you to link back to us. If you need any help with Croatia with just ask 🙂
Love this Post ~ I have all these things on my bucket list! Thank you for sharing!
Fantastic post! 😀 I’ve got tons of things to do the next time I’m there 🙂
Thanks for the reminder of the UNESCO sites, and also for the nominated sites. Can’t wait to explore as many as possible!
You know, I’d never planned on visiting Croatia before I started reading your blog – now I have a month’s worth of things I want to do there!
I want to do every single one of these things when i go to Croatia!
It seems clear that our Southern neighbors have awful lot of amazing places to visit,and I have been to only a bunch of them. I will definitely look up this post the next time I plan travelling there!
Great post…we totally agree with all of this (even though we haven’t been to Zadar yet!). Croatia is such a diverse and interesting countries – especially as you move from region to region! Safe travels!
Can I recommend venturing further north in Croatia, and visiting some of the beautiful castles and wine cellars in Hrvatsko Zagorje? ;). Also a trip to Kras, the chocolate factory is a must!
You’re a wonderful ambassador for Croatia SJ! We loved every minute of our time there and did a lot of the things you mention..except visit Istria! We’ll definitely be back!
We definitely need to get to some of these locations. We have been having a great time exploring Zagreb & look forward to seeing more.
Wow! If these images don’t entice me to visit Croatia, nothing will!
First of all, congratulations on your nomination for a Bloggie Award! I can see why you’re on the list. Considering that I didn’t know anything about what there was to do in Croatia before following Chasing the Donkey and Frank about Croatia, you are really making a good case for me to go there for a visit. On the above list, Istria and Zagreb appeals to me the most whereas I think my kids would chose one of the National Parks.
Thanks for putting together the must-see’s for Croatia. I agree that people only see Zagreb in transit are missing out on a lovely experience. The parks and low-key cafes were really enjoyable when I was there several summers ago.
We visited Croatia last summer on a road trip from southern France taking in Croatia, Montenegro, and Bosnia Herzogovina. It was amazing and yet I feel we only touched the surface. We went to Plitivice (gobsmackingly gorgeous), Split, Dubrovnik (hairs stood up on my arms as we walked through the gates it’s so beautiful) and spent some time on the beach at Tucepi. Zadar is definitely on the wish list for next time as are more of the islands and Zagreb. You are lucky living close to all this wonderous stuff!
I’ve thought of visiting Croatia a few times and reading this post really makes me want to go there.
So many things to do! I’ve only experienced about half of these and even then, I’d see them again in a heartbeat 🙂
Half is way better than none – and yup, they are so worth seeing again.
Great list of things to do! Love Leonardo’s photos. Just had a bit difficulty with describing Istria under Northern Croatia. But I guess for the travelers, it won’t make a difference. We, locals, always consider area north of Zagreb, as Northern Croatia, and Istria we think more of as Western Croatia. But as I said, for a traveler the point is clear – visit inland Istria 🙂
Thanks Vera for the clarification. My point of the piece was to try something NEW. North, West, just experience more than Dubrovnik and Split which everyone knows is in the South.
Great post with so many diverse things to do. You know you just keep selling Croatia to me. I wouldn’t even know where to start with all the wonderful things to do and see. I wish I was going sometime soon (like this year). Every post just keeps inspiring me and it looks absolutely beautiful.
Perhaps, you can make plans for summer 2015? Or you could come later in the year after Summer, when things slow down and its less crowded.
We have never been to Croatia, and among our friends only one couple has made it there. I would love to visit the beautiful beaches and national parks, and of course try Croatian cuisine.
How marvelously refreshing to read a travel blog on the very wonderful Croatia where Dubrovnik only gets a passing mention. Beautiful though it undoubtedly is, I do feel it (and Hvar island) take all the plaudits – whereas the entire country is a magical experience of sights, sounds smells and tastes. And best of all, I shall be back there in nine weeks time 😀
YES! I am so glad you appreciated that Jon. Everyone already knows how amazing both of those places are – so why not share the rest of the lovley country.
Hello, great to visit you, we are living parallel lives, sort of. I’m in Sydney with a FIFO husband too, also in oil and gas, currently 28:28 in an office in Kurdistan, due home next Friday! Now then, I have never been to Croatia which is just silly… your photos are luscious and make me want to jump on a plane. My sister sailed her boat there for weeks and weeks a couple of years ago and Sydney pals visit often: on the list!!
Hey! So great to hear from a fellow FIFO wife! They should swap jobs, Kurdistan is close to us! Perhaps you should meet hubby in Croatia on one of his swings home? Would make a great place to unwind before having to go back to work 🙂 So stay in touch – you can also find me at https://www.facebook.com/chasingthedonkey BYE.
What a fantastic post. Croatia sounds like such an awesome place to go with far more to see and do than what I realised. Now to start saving!!
Yes, its a great place for kids. Its really very safe here.
Diving into the Adriatic from a sailboat is simply divine, I have no other word for it. So is climbing cliffs straight from the sea and just falling back down into the warm clear water. The cliffs continue straight down under the surface, so it’s safer than it might sound. Kayaking is great, too – and I’m going to do paddle boarding next time I’m there. But the first thing I tell people not to miss is the Blue Grotto of Biševo!
I want to go there nowww!
Nice article and well explained about Croatia. I am planning to visit Croatia in mid of April with my family. Can’t wait.
me too.Croatia is my dream place to visit.its on top in my wish list