Explore Croatia – with our local recommendations
You are searching for an ideal vacation? Stop here, because we have all the information you need to enjoy your perfect holiday. Enjoy Croatia with our local recommendations.
Short facts about Croatia
Croatia (Hrvatska), officially the Republic of Croatia is a country at the crossroads of Central and Southeast Europe, on the Adriatic Sea. It borders Slovenia to the northwest, Hungary to the northeast, Serbia to the east, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Montenegro to the southeast, sharing a maritime border with Italy.
The official language is Croatian. It has an overall population of 4. 154 million (2017). It is the 127th largest country in the world. The territory covers 56,594 square kilometers (21,851 square miles), consisting of 56,414 square kilometers (21,782 square miles) of land and 128 square kilometers (49 square miles) of water.
Currency is Croatian Kuna (HRK). The capital city is, Zagreb, one of the most beautiful cities in continental Croatia. Other large cities are Osijek, Split, Pula and Dubrovnik.
The country has a lot of land and sea. Croatia has an amazing 5,835km of coastline, 4,057km of which belongs to breathtaking islands, cliffs and reefs. What better way to spend your holiday than in the sea? There are 1,185 islands in the Adriatic, while only about 50 are populated. The largest island is Krk (near Rijeka) which has a land area of 462 square km. Other famous islands are Hvar, Brač, Korčula and Pag. You will enjoy every single one of them! For sure!
Weather in Croatia
You are worried about the weather? Most of Croatia has a moderately warm and rainy continental climate. That means that monthly temperature ranges between −3 °C (27 °F) in January and 18 °C (64 °F) in July. The coldest parts of the country are Lika and Gorski Kotar and the warmest areas of Croatia are on the Adriatic coast.
Two fun facts about Croatian temperature records: The lowest temperature of −35.5 °C (−31.9 °F) was recorded on 3 February 1919 in Čakovec, and the highest temperature of 42.8 °C (109.0 °F) was recorded on 4 August 1981 in Ploče.
The weather on the sea is mostly warm, with dry summers and mild winters. Croatia has one of the sunniest coastlines in Europe. It has over 2,600 hours of sunlight on average yearly. Great place to get your vitamin D. The inside part of the country has a continental climate with hot summers and cold, snowy winters. A great choice for your vacation in any season! Choose from various options on the sea and in the continent.
Cultural heritage in Croatia
The UNESCO’s World Heritage List includes ten sites in Croatia. The country is also rich with ancient culture and holds 15 of UNESCO’s World’s intangible culture masterpieces, ranking fourth in the world. If you go to Plitvice Lakes you can enjoy a spectacular view to lakes, dams, caves and waterfalls. The surrounding forest is home to many animals, including wolves and bears. Besides Plitvice Lakes, here are Historical Complex of Split with the Palace of Diocletian, Old City of Dubrovnik , Historic City of Trogir, and much more!
A global cultural contribution from Croatia is the necktie, derived from the cravat originally worn by the 17th-century Croatian mercenaries in France. Don’t miss to buy your own necktie or licitar heart (original Croatian souvenir) in one of the unique shops in the heart of Zagreb.
There are eight national parks in Croatia, plus well over 400 other protected wildlife areas, such as nature parks and reserves. Most famous national parks are Plitvica Lakes, Paklenica, Risnjak, Mljet, Kornati, Brijuni, Krka, and Northern Velebit. You can go hike, walk, cycling and sightseeing. Make your day count.
Also, if you are looking for theatre shows, you can’t miss a long tradition in acting. Croatia has 95 professional theatres, 30 professional children’s theatres and 52 amateur theatres visited by more than 1.54 million viewers per year. There are 166 cinemas with attendance exceeding 4.814 million. Croatia has 222 museums, visited by more than 2.7 million people in 2016. If you are interested in these, don’t miss the Night of Museums and our local recommendation of museums, galleries and collections.
Tourism in Croatia
Everybody heard about Croatian motto: Croatia full of life?! Why? Because Croatia is an important tourist destination. Data from 2017 show that over 17 million people visited Croatia, making over 86 million overnight stays.
Most tourists come to Croatia for the beaches of the Adriatic Coast, where the tourist season starts in July and August. Others come for wildlife experiences, for agrotourism, to get first-class SPA treatments, or to visit cultural landmarks and participate in cultural events. The oldest holiday resort in Croatia is in Opatija, and it stands there since the 1870s.
But, what is the most important thing everybody just adores? Navy blue, transparent sea and unpolluted areas. Croatia has unpolluted marine areas reflected through numerous nature reserves and 116 Blue Flag beaches. Therefore, Croatia is ranked as the 18th most popular tourist destination in the world. The beaches are just amazing!
Also: one fun fact! Famous Game of Thrones Tv-show was filmed in one of the Croatian cities! Dubrovnik! If you are a fan you can enjoy many sights from the show, and even if you are not – the Old City will amaze you.
Also, one important and famous event is Advent in Zagreb. If you are in Croatia in Christmas time this is definitely a must-see. A spectacle of lights, music, food, wine and great company will fill your heart with joy. It has been declared The Best Christmas Market three years in a row! Check out our 10 Insider Tip to enjoy even more.
Cuisine in Croatia
You can’t be on a vacation hungry, right? Generally, Croatian traditional cuisine varies from one region to another. Dalmatia and Istria have culinary influences of Italian and other Mediterranean cuisines. That includes a variety of seafood, cooked vegetables, and pasta, as well as condiments such as olive oil and garlic.
The continental cuisine is heavily influenced by Austrian, Hungarian, and Turkish culinary styles. In that area, meats, freshwater fish and vegetable dishes are predominant. If you are in Zagreb, you can’t miss some of the best local restaurants and try out traditional and above all amazing dishes! Didov San is a great choice.
On the other side, when in Pula, don’t forget to visit their best locations and delight your palate. You will not regret it, definitely! We recommend Ribarska koliba.
Also, good food goes together with good wine!
There are two distinct wine-producing regions in Croatia. The continental region in the northeast of the country, especially Slavonia, is capable of producing premium wines, particularly whites. Along the north coast, Istrian and Krk wines are similar to those produced in neighboring Italy, while further south in Dalmatia, Mediterranean-style red wines are the best. You can enjoy walking through the vineyards and tasting of great domestic wines.