Winds on Croatian Adriatic

In order to enjoy on the Adriatic coast during one of the best periods for sailing, and those are precisely September and October, we will describe to you winds which blow on our coast.

The wind is any horizontal movement of air. To yachtsmen and all of those who love to sail this natural power serves as the means by which they create their art of managing a sailing boat. For that reason, it is extremely important to know the characteristics of all the winds at sea.

Good time to arrive on sailing holidays Croatia is from the end of March to early November. The months of September and October in the last few years is becoming increasingly popular due to good winds, regattas and not so crowded tourist locations.

We already wrote about winds in Croatia but, due to the great interest, here is another perspective.

TRAMONTANA – Empress of Winds

It has this imaginative name because of its strength and the quick arrival. This local wind is blowing from the North. It lasts for maximum a day, followed by clear weather and high air pressure. Usually blows from the Northern quadrant, although somewhere along the coast, as for example in the town of Split, because of the relief, is blowing from the Northwest.

Tramontana can become very strong; even to have stormy power, especially on the outer islands of the open seas of the Central Adriatic coast, in the North-Western Istria where the wind is blowing like a storm North wind from the South-Eastern Alps.

BORA – When it has Lunch and When it Drinks Coffee

Bora is a dry and cold wind that blows in gusts from the direction NNE to ENE for several days. It goes across ridges of coastal mountains and moves down to the sea surface by high speed. Bora blows the strongest mostly on the mainland coast and the closest coastal islands. Occasionally it reaches, in full force, remote islands till Palagruza, especially if hurricane type of bora, called Šijun-Levantâra, blows. Due to the sudden change in direction and intensity bora often creates difficulties in sailing.

Domestic sailors are inclined to say that bora at twelve o’clock goes to lunch, because that’s when it’s the weakest because of the Sun, and about three o’clock in the afternoon drinks coffee because then wakes up again and suddenly step up. By the strength and the speed of the bora especially stands out Rijeka, Senj, Maslenica, Split, Vrulja and Makarska.

Slika – Bora-wind-in-Croatia.jpg – ALT – When bora blows it’s no time for sailing.

LEVANAT – Italian Name for East Wind

As its name says (It. levanter – East) it blows from East direction and usually brings cloudy weather with rainfall. It blows short-term, evenly, with moderate strength. It is a transitional wind when sirocco goes into a bora or bora into sirocco. In the summer mornings, for a serene and stable time, it blows in the canals of central Dalmatian Islands. In the Northern Adriatic it is much stronger than in other areas of the Adriatic Sea.

JUGO or Sirocco

This warm and moist wind blows from the direction of ESE to SSE, develops high waves and most often brings heavy rain. In the southern and middle part of the Adriatic Sirocco blows more often and more intensely in the spring from March to June than in the northern part of it where occurs more often in the period from autumn to late winter.

In summer, Jugo wind is blowing up to three days, but in the winter can blow longer than ten days. For boaters is useful to know that by the time of blowing winds from the southern quadrant there are no prospects for significant improvement of weather.


This wind is usually only a transition from the Jugo to Libeccio. It blows mostly in the open sea and lasts for a short while. In summer, Oštro appears as a precursor of the summer breeze. It is often weak, does not raise big waves, and lasts a few hours and in the twilight stops.


It blows from the SSW one to two days, in the summer significantly shorter, and brings frequent and abundant precipitation and very poor visibility. In the winter the waves very quickly reach the intensity of the storm. During this wind it is recommended to avoid sailing in the belt of the creation of the chaotic waves, and it’s usually at least a mile or two from the coast. This is especially true for navigation along the coast south of Dubrovnik.

For those who rent a boat in Croatia it is important to know that the unpleasant and unsafe is staying in the ports that are open and unprotected from the Southwest and West. These are mostly ports, coves and anchorages on the West coast of Istria, Mali Lošinj, Zadar, Split, Maslenica, Komiza, Vela Luka, Korcula’s old port, the port of Šibenik, Dubrovnik and others.


Pulenat is a cold West wind and mostly blows as strong or very strong. It is more common in the North than in the middle or Southern Adriatic. Sometimes brings storm, which rapidly progressing, so you have to be extremely cautious.


Sailors on the Adriatic love this wind the most because of the constancy and reliability. It blows from mid-May to September. Usually starts to blow at the time of the first stronger warming of land between 9 and 10 in the morning from direction of NW. It is the strongest in the afternoon and in the evening is calming down.

On the open sea and in the canals the mistral is a stronger and more permanent. In the Pasman, Split, Brac, Hvar, Korcula, Pelješac, Mljet and Kolocep canal it blows stronger in the direction of the canal. By the frequency of blowing especially famous are canals of Pelješac and Zadar in which supports the eastern sea currents.


Burin is a weak night wind, similar to Mistral, which occurs at sundown and lasts until early in the morning. The name is given by the Bora wind, because wind is blowing from the direction of NE and even changes the intensity like bora. It reaches out a dozen kilometers from the coast and rarely reaches a medium severity on the Adriatic. Mostly blows in summer.

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