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The Excellent 7-Day Croatia Itinerary (Up to date 2024)

A gorgeous view overlooking Split, Croatia on a bright and sunny summer day
Posted: 5/13/2024 | Might thirteenth, 2024

Croatia has been a bustling vacationer sizzling spot for six or seven years now. Formed like a boomerang and bordering Bosnia, Montenegro, Serbia, and Slovenia, this small nation of 4 million folks punches effectively above its weight. You possibly can spend time stress-free on the sunny Adriatic Sea, hop between a whole bunch of rugged and distant islands, feast on Italian-esque delicacies, or journey inland and go to beautiful waterfalls and plush nationwide parks.

Whereas there may be loads to see and do right here, most vacationers confine their go to to Dubrovnik or Break up. And positive, these are cool cities. However Croatia has way more to supply.

However if you solely have every week and also you need the solar, I perceive why you’d wish to concentrate on that a part of Croatia. (Professional tip: Like a whole lot of Southern Europe, it’s greatest to keep away from Croatia in the course of the warm-weather summer season months. Along with the excessive temperatures and excessive costs, you’re going to be sharing the nation with a military of vacationers. Should you go in winter, the climate is cooler and the costs are a lot gentler, however many vacationer cities, akin to Dubrovnik, virtually shut down from late October till mid-April. Your greatest guess is April-Might and early September till early November. Crowds will likely be smaller and costs received’t be by way of the roof.)

So, that can assist you plan your journey, I’ve created this preferrred seven-day itinerary for southern Croatia. It covers the highlights whereas additionally getting you off the crushed path. You’ll see cities, seashores, villages, and have loads of time to take in the native tempo of life.


Days 1 & 2: Dubrovnik

A stunning view over the Old Town of Dubrovnik, Croatia with the Adriatic Sea in the distance
Dubrovnik is a seaside city of simply 40,000 folks, however based mostly on its recognition, you’d suppose it was a lot larger. It’s the preferred vacation spot within the nation, because of its medieval walled Outdated City, or Stari Grad, which may get filled with vacationers, particularly in the course of the peak summer season season.

Whereas most of Croatia is inexpensive, Dubrovnik is not low cost. Numerous cruises cease right here now and costs have skyrocketed lately. That mentioned, there are some things right here which might be value forking out outrageous charges for:

Stroll the Outdated City Partitions
Strolling the medieval partitions is a should if it’s your first time visiting. The doorway payment isn’t low cost at 35 EUR, however the stroll provides unimaginable views of the Outdated City and the glowing Adriatic Sea. It’s 60-90 minutes of awe and completely definitely worth the price ticket.

Summit Mr. Srd
Take the cable automobile as much as the highest of Mt. Srd. It towers over the Outdated City, and whereas it prices 27 EUR, as soon as you’re taking the experience and see the view you’ll understand it was effectively value the associated fee. Should you’re on a price range, it’s also possible to hike to the highest. There’s a mud path that may take you to peak, nevertheless it’s a difficult hike. Give your self about an hour every means. As soon as on the high, you possibly can sit on the restaurant and nurse an overpriced beverage whereas taking within the jaw-dropping view.

Go to the Battle Photograph Ltd. Museum
There usually are not a whole lot of nice museums in Dubrovnik, however be sure to go to Battle Photograph Ltd., a gallery began by New Zealand-born Wade Goddard, a former conflict photographer. The everlasting exhibition on the Balkan wars of the Nineties will allow you to get a greater understanding of what went on right here 30 years in the past. It’s sobering, however eye-opening. Admission is 10 EUR.

Discover Gruž
If you wish to escape the vacationer crowds, particularly when there’s a cruise ship in port, head to Gruž, a once-gritty neighborhood on the marina that now boasts a number of nice eating places and cafés. It’s additionally house to Dubrovnik Beer Firm, town’s first and solely brewery. The cavernous taproom is a stunning place to sip a neighborhood beer after a day of exploring.

If you get hungry in Gruž, try Kiosk, an out of doors informal spot that serves up Dalmatian Coast fare with some world twists. Or for one thing actually memorable and really Dalmatian, guide a spot at Marija’s Home, the place chef Marija Papak opens her house to guests in the course of the warm-weather months and cooks up a nightly feast of peka delicacies — lamb, pork, and/or octopus slow-cooked below a bell-like lid on the grill that renders the meat impossibly tender and scrumptious.


Day 3: Break up

The stunning coastline of Split, Croatia on a beautiful sunny day
About 240 kilometers (150 miles) up the coast is Break up, Croatia’s second largest metropolis. This stunning metropolis was comparatively ignored by vacationers till just lately. However there are a couple of good causes to spend a minimum of in the future and evening right here.

The chief attraction in Break up is inconceivable to overlook. When Roman Emperor Diocletian determined to retire to the world the place he grew up — the central Dalmatian Coast — he had an enormous, lavish palace constructed proper on the seashore. He died a couple of years after he moved in, and what occurred subsequent is sort of attention-grabbing: over the centuries, because the palace started to crumble and turn into a spoil, town mainly moved in and made it a part of the material of the city.

Immediately, you possibly can stroll across the heart of Break up and abruptly understand you’re really inside the palace. What was as soon as a hallway, for instance, is now a slim, limestone-clad lane. What might need been a bed room is now a seafood restaurant.

A lot of the palace is free to stroll round in. If you would like an in-depth have a look at it, although, there are loads of guided excursions.

And when you’re in Break up, additionally don’t miss St. Duje’s Cathedral, Klis Fortress (featured in Sport of Thrones), and the Museum of Croatian Archaeological Monuments (house to some 20,000 relics and artifacts).

The opposite most important cause why Break up needs to be in your itinerary is that it’s the primary transportation hub for ferries to numerous islands in central Dalmatia. After spending a night on the town, hop on a morning ferry to Hvar, certainly one of Croatia’s coolest islands, a pleasing one hour and forty-five minutes. If you wish to get there extra shortly, there’s additionally a catamaran.

Day 4: Hvar

The beautiful waters in a bay on Hvar, Croatia on a sunny summer day with old buildings in the background
The island of Hvar, recognized for its lavender manufacturing, is a enjoyable place to spend a day. The eponymous Hvar City is the primary attraction for most individuals. Filled with centuries-old homes and slim alleyways, it’s an attention-grabbing place to get misplaced for some time.

It additionally has attracted a wild social gathering scene. All of the boat excursions cease right here for his or her passengers to get wasted and go clubbing on the world-famous Carpe Diem so take into account this island has a celebration scene – however there’s much more to the island!

For someplace extra laid-back, try Stari Grad, actually “Outdated City,” positioned on the alternative facet of the island from Hvar City. Lately added to the UNESCO World Heritage listing, it boasts a warren of slim, stone-blanketed lanes. You’ll want to additionally take a hike by way of the island’s many olive groves and lavender fields.

Should you don’t have your individual car, there’s a wine and olive oil tasting tour to this facet of the island (you’ll make a cease on the lavender fields too).

Days 5 & 6: Sibenik and Krka Nationwide Park

The beautiful Krka waterfalls in a national park in Croatia, surrounded by lush greenery
About midway up the coast between Break up and Zadar is oft-overlooked Šibenik (pronounced “Shee-ben-eek”), a medieval city of about 35,000 folks that’s value spending a few days in. For starters, the St. James cathedral is a marvel to have a look at; it’s the world’s largest church made totally of stone. The fortress-topped city additionally boasts of a maze of limestone-topped alleyways. Should you really feel like a splurge, Šibenik is house to Pelegrini, a Michelin-starred restaurant that serves up inventive takes on Central Dalmatian fare.

Šibenik can also be the gateway for exploring close by Krka Nationwide Park and its beautiful waterfalls. Be sure to additionally get there early to beat the vacationer buses to see 14th-century Visovac Monastery in the midst of an island on the Krka River. Park admission ranges from 7 EUR within the off-season (January-February) all the best way as much as a staggering 40 EUR throughout peak season (June-September).

Day 7: Zadar

The long, stone steps along the Dalmatian Coast of Zadar in Croatia
Only one hour by automobile from Šibenik, Zadar has been getting a whole lot of consideration in the previous couple of years. Its limestone-blanketed historic heart juts out into the Adriatic and is filled with medieval church buildings (try the oddly round church of St. Donatus, the most important church on the Dalmatian Coast).

The town additionally has a novel sea organ. Positioned on a set of steps that descend into the ocean, the organ makes sounds because the waves crash by way of it, creating a wierd however harmonious sound that seems like whale calls. The organ consists of 35 tubes and was designed by architect Nikola Fundamental. Come right here at sundown to soak within the picturesque views and hearken to the fascinating sounds of the ocean. In spite of everything, Alfred Hitchcock mentioned Zadar has probably the most stunning sundown on this planet, making this a becoming vacation spot to finish your week-long journey alongside the coast.


With over a thousand islands, quite a few seashores, and numerous mountaineering trails, you could possibly simply spend months exploring Croatia and nonetheless solely scratch the floor. However, for those who solely have every week, this itinerary will present you the highlights whereas whetting your urge for food for future visits. Whereas it’s not fairly as low cost because it was, the nation provides plenty of worth and is tremendous straightforward to discover.

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E-book Your Flight
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You possibly can guide your hostel with Hostelworld as they’ve the most important stock and greatest offers. If you wish to keep someplace apart from a hostel, use as they constantly return the most cost effective charges for guesthouses and low cost inns.

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Journey insurance coverage will defend you towards sickness, harm, theft, and cancellations. It’s complete safety in case something goes unsuitable. I by no means go on a visit with out it as I’ve had to make use of it many occasions previously. My favourite firms that provide the very best service and worth are:

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Need Extra Info on Croatia?
You’ll want to go to our sturdy vacation spot information on Croatia for much more planning suggestions!

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