Discover 3 Best Cruising Routes in Croatia!
It’s no secret that Croatia is one of the most popular summer destinations in Europe. The country was visited by more than 21 million tourists in 2019, which is 5x more than the number of its inhabitants. While this number has decreased in the past two years due to the pandemic, the demand for cruising and sailing has been on the rise because of the safe nature of this type of tourism.
And all this hype is not without a reason. Croatian coast features 1244 islands, islets, cliffs and reefs, incredible Mediterranean towns with centuries old history and architecture, fantastic local gastronomy and dreamy untouched nature. This unique combination makes it a real paradise for anyone looking for a holiday on a sailboat, yacht, gulet or any other type of vessel.
But there might be one problem. How can you choose a spot to visit from the seemingly endless possibilities? We know it’s not easy, so we prepared a list of three fantastic 8-day cruising routes that cover some of the most stunning parts of the Adriatic. Let’s dive in!
1. From one iconic city to another
Dubrovnik - Split (one way route)
Dubrovnik - Ston - Korčula - Stari Grad (Hvar) - Šćedro - Vis - Biševo - Brač - Split / Trogir
While you can’t really go wrong with any of the routes, this one is a real no-brainer. The route connects two of the most popular coastal towns in Croatia, Dubrovnik and Split. Both towns feature UNESCO Heritage Sights, Diocletian’s Palace from 305AD in Split and the old city in Dubrovnik. Expect to explore the centuries old stone streets, enjoy some of the country’s finest restaurants and just soak up the urban Mediterranean vibes at the start and the finish of your trip. But the best thing might come in between - this cruise will take you to some of the most incredible Croatian islands, including the lush green Korčula, super-trendy Hvar, and picturesque Vis. One of the highlights of the trip is a stop at a tiny Biševo island, where you’ll have an opportunity to visit the hidden Blue Cave, naturally enlightened in bright blue by light that comes through water.
This route is also very practical for anyone arriving by plane, since both Dubrovnik and Split have international airports well-connected with almost all major European cities.
2. Watch the dolphins in the Nature Park
Šibenik/Zaton - Šibenik/Zaton (Route 3)
Šibenik/Zaton - Šibenik/Zaton (Route 3) Šibenik - Zlarin - Murter - Biograd - Zadar - Telašćica - Kornati - Vodice - Šibenik
This route starts and ends in the little pearl of the Adriatic - Šibenik, a town of four medieval fortresses, UNESCO heritage Cathedral of St. James (featured in Game of Thrones), fantastic gastronomic scene, and great vibes all together. From there, we continue to Zlarin, one of the smallest inhabited islands (284 permanent residents), famous for the artisanal production of incredible bright-red coral jewelry. After a few stops we continue to Zadar, a city that features both traditional and modern architectural gems, including the sea-organ - an innovative instrument being played by the waves of the Adriatic 24-7. What follows is breathtaking nature, dramatic cliffs of the Telašćica Nature Park (up to 161 meters tall!) and the promise from the title - dolphins. If you thought that dolphins are native just to the tropics, this route might prove you wrong! Since they enjoy the Adriatic as much as anyone else, you might actually encounter them on other routes too, but they are particularly common near the Kornati National Park, one of the stops of this route.
3. See Croatian paradise islands
Split/Trogir - Split/Trogir (Route 2)
Split/Trogir - Split/Trogir (Route 2) Split / Trogir - Maslenica (Šolta) - Hvar - Korčula - Lastovo - Vela Luka - Vis - Milna (Brač) - Split / Trogir
And last but not least, route number three starts and ends in the incredible Split. The second largest Croatian city is known for its history, architecture and laid back attitude perfect to get you in your holiday spirit. Visit the 2300-year-old palace, hike up to the Marjan hill for perfect views of the city, or just enjoy a drink on the city’s promenade, as the locals like to do daily. From there the cruise continues to Šolta island, a real hidden gem with no massive tourism, which is a nice contrast to the hustle and bustle of Split. Next stops are favorites for most of our guests - Hvar and Korčula. These islands are a perfect balance of untouched nature, medieval architecture and some trendy cafes, restaurants and nightclubs. We continue to one of the most remote inhabited places in the Adriatic - Lastovo, an archipelago of 46 small islands. The tranquil vibes of this place will make you wind-down and forget about the meaning of stress pretty quickly. This route will also take you to the hidden bays of Korčula, Vis and Brač island, for an (almost) private beach experience, and then back to Split.
The decision is yours! While we’re not sure that we’ve made it easier for you to choose an ideal route for this year’s holiday, we know that you can’t go wrong with choosing any of the three.
All will give you a perfect opportunity to discover some of the most important sights, get away from the crowds, as well as unwind in crystal clear waters. For more options, make sure to check out the other 12 Croatian cruising routes.
Start packing, a dream holiday is ahead of you!