Did you know that the small, seaside Republic of Croatia is home to over 1,000 diverse islands? As one would expect, this makes it a prime location for travelers looking to go island hopping. But of those many beautiful islands, which are most worth visiting? While each island has a lot to offer, some are more popular than others. If you're planning to go island hopping in Croatia, check out what 10 of the most well-known isles have to offer.
Brač is a Croatian island known for its white pebble beaches, including Zlatni Rat. But pebbly beaches aren't all this island has to offer. For one, Brač is one of the most convenient Croatian isles to visit, thanks to its close proximity to the mainland. It also features various medieval attractions, such as the Blaca Monastery, and other natural locations with breathtaking views, including the peak of Vidova Gora.
The Brijuni is a group of 14 tiny isles in the Adriatic Sea. Renowned for its natural beauty and interesting history tied to the ancient Greeks and Romans, it's a fantastic island to visit if you want to admire raw nature in the Brijuni National Park. Feel as though you’re taking a trip back in time while visiting this island’s various history and art museums.
Vis is a long sail away from the mainland, but the trip is worth it! This popular isle is full of ancient and natural wonders, including the Levaman Fortress and various coves and caves. One of Vis's most famous attractions is the Blue Cave, or Blue Grotto, a sea cave in Balun Bay. What makes this cave unique is the interior's haunting cerulean hue, which occurs due to sunlight reflecting off the pearly white seabed. Boating through this natural wonder is a relaxing and enchanting experience that will stay with you forever. Vis is also home to the Green Cave, which is bathed in a vibrant emerald green.
Though it has a convenient location just a few miles from the mainland, Šolta island isn't as well-known as some of the other names on this list. But just because it isn't mainstream doesn't mean it isn't worth visiting. Šolta has a lengthy history dating back to Neolithic times. While there, you can engross yourself in old legends like the tales of Queen Teuta and Emperor Diocletian, explore the island's ancient (and scrumptious) traditions of olive oil, wine, honey, and gingerbread-making, or just enjoy the masterfully crafted medieval structures found all over the island.
If you prefer peace and quiet, the small remote island municipality of Lastovo can provide it. This tiny island has a population of less than a thousand, with its towns and cities vastly outnumbered by dense forests. Most of your time in Lastovo will be spent wandering through the charming, history-rich old villages, hiking up the well-marked trails, or swimming, scuba diving, or snorkeling in the biodiverse waters.
Dugi Otok is a long, thin isle found just off the Dalmatian coast, west of Zadar. It's the seventh largest island in the Adriatic Sea. Biking around Dugi Otok is a fun and active way to travel if you want to avoid traffic. Stop by the active Veli Rat lighthouse, a well-known landmark of the island, or Telašćica Bay, an azure bay situated on a scenic, forested cliff.
Hvar is easily the most popular Croatian island. While many consider Hvar a "party city" for the nightlife and luxury resorts of Hvar Town, it features a more natural, family-friendly side too. Its secluded beaches, pine forests, and quaint renaissance and fishing towns make it a great destination for travelers of all ages.
Kornati is the densest archipelago in the Adriatic Sea, consisting of 140 uninhabited islands, 109 of which are part of Kornati National Park. While you won't find luxurious resorts or restaurants on Kornati, you will find stunning karst-limestone rock formations, beaches surrounded by a clear blue sea, and rare wildlife.
Korčula is a long and populous island just off the Dalmatian coast. It's known for its dense forests, sandy beaches, and groves full of olives. But most notably, it's known for the Old Town! The Old Town is where you'll find most of Korčula's attractions, such as the Land Gate, St. Mark's Cathedral, and the infamous Marco Polo House. Additionally, there are a lot of local restaurants and family-owned wineries here, making this island a top destination for self-proclaimed foodies.
Another beautifully natural island, Mljet, is in the southeast part of the Adriatic Sea. While slightly difficult to access, the sheer natural beauty of the island makes the trip worthwhile. The northeastern part of the island is fully dedicated to the Mljet National Park, which is home to a sprawling pine forest, several lakes, and various endemic plants and animals. There's also a small, picturesque village on the southern end of the island called Sobra. Sobra features several stores, guesthouses, and restaurants serving traditional Croatian treats; you can relax here after hiking through the park.
If you're going island hopping in Croatia, this list of what each island has to offer can help you plan your itinerary. It's impossible to visit all of Croatia's islands in one go, but by planning carefully, you can maximize the number you see and make the most out of your yacht chartering vacation.
So, which islands should you prioritize? It depends on your personality and the kind of experience you're looking for. Nature-lovers will adore islands like Kornati and Mljet, while those seeking luxury will feel at home in Hvar and Krk. Tailor your schedule to your interests, and you're sure to have a grand time!
And remember: this list only contains ten of Croatia's isles! There are plenty of other islands to visit as well. With so much to see and do in this coastal country, your next Croatia yacht charter is bound to be an eventful one.
To plan your next trip to Croatia and its many islands, get in touch with the passionate, trained brokers at Seize the Day Charters. Tell us about your dream vacation, and we'll do our best to bring it to life. We can find you a yacht charter that features everything you want and need, whether that's a big yacht for the whole family or something cozy for a solo vacay.