As one of the fastest growing holiday destinations amongst British travellers, 1.4 million Brits visited Croatia in the first six months of 2018 alone. So we decided to see what had so many people travelling to the Eastern European country and produce a guide to Croatia of our own. Before you read our guide we’d like to remind you that having your documentation such as EHIC Card and passport organised beforehand is important to help ensure that your travel is as seamless as possible regardless of what you choose to do when you arrive!
Places to visit
The Croatian capital of Zagreb is underrated in every sense of the word. With a romantic medieval old town, a 12thcentury neo-gothic cathedral and the famed Ban Jelacic Square, it’s a culmination of everything that makes Croatia great. Plus, its home to some of the best bistros and restaurants that Eastern Europe has to offer.
To begin your day we recommend the Bistroteka, the ‘epicentre of Zagreb’s bistro revolution’ according to the Telegraph. It offers a number of healthy dishes based around millet flakes, chia seeds, apples and cinnamon.
As for lunch and dinner, we recommend the Courtyard Escape, run by ex- Croatian TV chef Ana Ugarković, the restaurant’s baked filo dough and cottage cheese comes highly recommended.
Situated on the Croatian island of Vis, the Stinvia beach is completely obscured by two cliffs facing one another, making it almost impossible to see from a passing boat.
The ‘cliff gate’ makes the Stinvia resemble that of a cove opposed to a beach and was recently named amongst Europe’s best beaches by a Belgian travel provider.
Although the beach is remarkably beautiful, it is remote in equal measure. With no direct access for cars, expect to walk for at least 20 minutes to arrive at the beach, making this the ideal location to relax and unwind.
Krka National Park
Created to protect the river of the same name, one of the only ways you can access the Krka National Park is via the seaside town of Sibenik. Just a few miles north of the town, the journey is well worth the time as the sites you will see in the national park truly have to be seen to be believed.
Stunning waterfalls, ancient Roman ruins and a variety of unique wildlife including the European Otter are just some of the spectacular views that populate the Krka, all of which are accessible by hiking trails.
Hvar is a port and resort town known by locals as the island of Lavender for its famous – you guessed it Lavender fields. Home to an incredibly diverse terrain, you’ll find beaches such as Dubovica as well as rocky coves and even pine forests on the secluded island. Yachts fill its harbour during the summer months and ferries connect the town with the deserted lagoons of the Pakleni Islands offshore.
Things To Do
Act Out Your Own Game Of Thrones Episode
The country’s growing popularity is in no small part thanks to its starring role in the award-winning HBO television series Game of Thrones. With the fantasy television show using a number of the country’s picturesque locations to shoot, the city of Dubrovnik’s old town forms part of the King’s Landing and the Fortress of Klis is used for exterior shots of Meereen. You can walk the very same streets in which Jon Snow and Daenerys Targaryen competed for the Iron Throne.
Spot Some Dolphins
The Istria coastline is the most northern region of Croatia and is the home to a beautiful national park and a number of historic towns. However Istria’s main attraction is its harbour, having first formed in the 19th century, it’s surrounded by an entire suburb making finding accommodation incredibly easy.
What’s more, Adriatic tours are available from the harbour where you’ll be taken aboard a large cruiser to go dolphin spotting.
Greet The Sun
A true man-made modern wonder, the ‘Greeting to the Sun’ is a large circle of solar panels which collects energy during the day and then in the evening uses that power to project a light show.
The artist and designer also installed the world’s first sea organ into the exhibit which makes sounds by way of sea waves crashing against tubes located underneath a set of large marble steps. So while you enjoy the light show you can also listen to the unique sea art instrument. The Greeting to the Sun is located in the coastal of Zabar.
Hideout is a music festival spanning across land, sea, beach and boat. It is held across Croatia’s iconic, Papaya, Kalypso, Aquarius and Noa clubs on the Novalja Zrće Beach. The festival lasts for five days in July and also hosts a series of boat parties during its duration and has some of the biggest names in electronic, grime and rap music headline. In 2018 acts such as Jamie Jones, Chase & Status, Bicep, Andy C, AJ Tracey, Eats Everything, Hannah Wants and Dusky performed.
Things To Consider
Travelling across Croatia will likely involve more planning than the majority of countries within Europe, largely due to its unusual geography. You’ll have to pay close attention to a variety of different methods of transportation including local ferry, bus, train and even plane schedules to ensure your trip runs as smoothly as possible.
Nevertheless, provided you catch your relevant form of transport, the infrastructure is sound. Ferries, buses and trains are reliable and remarkable comfortable, flights are cheap and if you choose to drive the majority of roads are modern and well maintained.
The accommodation in Croatia is aptly diverse to match its landscape, with international hotel brands populating the major cities, seaside campsites available across the coastline and all-inclusive resorts found in the most popular holidaymaker destinations. We’re confident you’ll find a place to stay that suits you.
So will you be one of the many Brits travelling to Croatia next year? We hope if you are that this guide has served as a helpful resource before you set off on your holiday. Happy travels!