Rich in history and heritage, from ancient Roman and Greek ruins dating from 300 A.D. circa to endless beaches. The Dalmatian coast is a gem in the Adriatic, at a fraction of the cost of Greece and Italy.
Don't limit your stay to Dubrovnik which is growing in reputation as being one of the most attractive destinations in the Mediterranean. The old roman cities of Split and Trogir also have appeal and well worth the visit. The Diocletian's Palace, a UNESCO World Heritage site is a most impressive Roman ruin right in the heart of Split. Life abounds inside the walls, from those who make their homes within the walls to shoppers, bar-hoppers, workers, kids and tourists.
Cost Saving Tips
The high season, July and August, is more expensive. In April, May, September and October, prices are reduced by up to 50%.
Private accommodation, is very popular in Croatia are the best value. Croatians have been renting out rooms and apartments for decades. The accommodation has more space than in a hotel and you'll typically also have a kitchen, which also saves money on meals.
Dubrovnik and Zagreb are the most expensive cities Hvar the most expensive island. Try staying on the outskirts. The villages around Dubrovnik are cheaper than Dubrovnik and Jelsa is cheaper than Hvar Town.
Explore off the beaten path
Visit some less popular regions such as Karlovac, Paklenica National Park, Kopacki Rit Nature Park, Cres Island, Vis Island, Pag Island or Dugi Otok. Or visit the islands of the Sibenik archipelago. They also offer a rich experience.
Flying into a cheaper gateway city rather than flying directly to Zagreb, Split or Dubrovnik. You may have betterluck finding deals to Frankfurt, Bratislava, Milan, Prague or Vienna and from there a cheap flight to your city of choice in Croatia. Flying into Ljublana may be a good option as it is not far from the borders into Croatia.
The bus system in Croatia is great; buses are fast, reliable, comfortable and frequent. Passenger Ferry service to the islands is reliable and frequent.
If you are renting a car in another European country for travel into Croatia, make certain that you are allowed to take it into Croatia. The various car companies have different rules ranging from not allowing any of their cars to limiting it to certain models only.
The highways are excellent, so driving between major points is not a problem. Local roads however, can be congested. Parking can be a problem, especially close to the old cities in Split, Trogir or Dubrovnik.
Dubrovnik Summer Crowds
As Dubrovnik's reputation of being one of the most attractive destinations in the Mediterranean grows, the city can become overwhelmed on the days when cruise liners arrive and disgorge their passengers. Trying to traverse the old city on days when when one of these ships is unloading really takes the edge off your enjoyment as you fight the crowds.
The port authority recognizes this and have implemented new measures to limits the number of cruise passengers up to 8.000 per day. That is still a lot for the small old town,and there were still some days in 2011 when the numbers were closer to 10,000. Dubrovnik Port Authority and Dubrovnik County Port Authority have signed an agreement on joint booking according to 2+1 principle, which means booking two large cruise ships at the port and one large cruise ship in front of the Old Town.
They also maintain an online schedule of when cruise liners arrivals and how bad the crowds will be. Use this link to plan when you want to visit the old town.
The Croatian coast is mostly pebbly, rocky and narrow but there are also some wonderful sand beaches as well. The water is crystal clear and the Croatia Adriatic is often referred to as the cleanest Mediterranean sea.
July and August are the warmest months when the sea temperature reaches up to 28degC (83degF) and air temperature exceeds well over 35degC ( 95degF). This is the peak of the season, especially between July 15 and Aug 15, and you can expect crowds on the most popular beaches. If you prefer not so hot weather and less crowd, then June and September are ideal for you. Water is still warm and you will get plenty of sunshine. Swimming and sunbathing is also possible in May or October (if you come from Scandinavia or Canada and are not afraid of a bit colder water). Depending on the weather, even April is sometimes nice and warm enough for the beach.
Plitvicka Jezera National Park
The Plitvicka area is one of the most scenic areas in Croatia and is well worth the trip. It takes about 6 hours to walk all the trails.
Getting there is a challenge as access is via single lane roads through the countryside. There is no real bus station there, just bus stops along the road (next to both entrances to the park).
Leave early for day trips!
There is a bus stop on the main road just next to the park. There are many buses going in each direction, either to Zagreb or to Dalmatian Coast.Travel Times:
Plitvice-Split : 3.5 to 4 hours
Plitvice-Zadar : 4 hours.