in partnership with Visit Croatia
Header Image Credits: Hrvoje Serdar/CNTB
What has bright blue waters, over 1000 islands and islets, and thousands of berths available for boats to spend the night in paradise? The ultimate Balkan country for sailing adventures: Croatia.
Even on land, Croatia’s main appeal is the azure of the Adriatic Sea that cradles its most popular cities: Dubrovnik, Split, Zadar, Pula, Rijeka.
Whether you’re swimming outside Dubrovnik’s Old City walls or eating a fresh seafood feast by the marina in Split, life in Croatia revolves around its waters.
And that’s why seafarers adore this Adriatic gem. Looking to take a Croatia sailing trip with your own boat? Interested in Yacht Week Croatia? Unsure why a Croatia sailing trip is the vacation you need to take this summer? Here are our five favorite reasons to go on a sailing adventure in Croatia this year.
1. To learn how to sail ⛵️
Let’s start with the basics. Never been on a sailboat before? That’s ok.
Croatia is one of the most affordable (and beautiful) places to learn sailing. A wide variety of professional sailing courses can be found across the country where you’ll pay for lessons, a berth, food, and boat costs.
The biggest advantages of sailing trips in Croatia for beginners?
- The stunning, wide-open waters where you’ll feel perfectly at peace while learning the ropes (pun intended.)
- The amazing local tavernas your skipper will take you to for onshore meals.
- The perfect weather between May and October.
…need we say more?
2. Let loose at Yacht Week Croatia 🎉
If you’re not the sailor type but still want to explore this country’s magical Adriatic Sea firsthand, Croatia yacht tours are a perfect alternative.
Yacht Week Croatia has become synonymous with a sun-drenched seven days full of partying, exploring, and generally enjoying life with people from all over the world. Yacht Week Croatia is actually multiple weeks during their year when a flotilla of yachts, skippers included, set off on identical routes through the Croatian islands.
Participants sleep, eat, and live aboard the yacht, disembarking throughout the day or at night to attend exclusive parties, snorkel, or take day trips on beautiful islands.
3. Embrace the peace ✌️
Imagine anchoring your boat in a quiet cove for the night and waking up surrounded by nothing but the calm, crystal clear waters of the Adriatic.
No matter how you choose to sail Croatia, there’s peaceful perfection waiting for you.
From Split, head to the island of Šolta where you can explore the quaint marina in Maslinica or enjoy the sandy beach at Šipkova Bay. For even more peace, spend the night in the sheltered cove of Šešula.
Near Pula and Rijeka, your Croatia sailing charter can take you to the island of Cres, a peaceful place not far from the mainland. Try to nab a berth in Valun, a quiet village famous for its delicious seafood served at the local tavernas. Across the bridge from Cres, Losinj is full of tiny towns with only a few dozen residents.
Nearby Rab island is an incredible sight to see at sunset when the barren rockface reflects golden hour light in spectacular fashion.
The Elaphiti Islands are the ultimate chill spot. Croatia yacht tours and Croatia sailing charters can both take you to these small, ultra-laidback islands near Dubrovnik. Swim through secluded caves or enjoy a glass of local wine at sunset on a sandy beach. It doesn’t get much more laid back than this.
4. Eat the world’s freshest food 🐠
Natural, fresh, simple ingredients, straight from the land and sea. When you’re in Croatia, the fish you’re eating at that cute little seaside taverna was caught earlier in the morning by the owners. The bread is fresh-baked in their kitchen and the olive oil is homemade from the backyard olive trees. And the wine? That is from their cousin’s tiny vineyard down the road.
In fact, the number of olive trees in Dalmatia (4.5 million!) is higher than the country’s population. So expect to enjoy much of your fresh fish cooked to perfection in olive oil.
Visit the island of Pag on your Croatia sailing trip to walk among its 80,000 olive trees, including the oldest, estimated to be over 2,000 years old.
Some other must-try Croatian foods include:
- Blitva: chard cooked with potatoes, garlic, and olive oil. A popular side dish
- Pršut (prosciutto): Cured ham, dried by the Bura winds. Smoked or not, pršut is a protected delicacy. Try different kinds from all the different regions!
- Soparnik: Chard pie. A local favorite.
- Black risotto: A rich, creamy perfection of risotto made from cuttlefish ink. Be sure to grab a refreshing drink to go along with this one.
- Octopus salad: Made from octopus fresh out of the Adriatic drizzled with local olive oil and lemon 🤤
5. The beaches are unparalleled 🏖
Not all beaches are created equal. And how better to see a region’s best beaches than by boat? Sail Croatia’s bluegreen waters and you’ll pass by rocky islets and white sand paradises. You’ll spot places where the olive trees meet the sea and discover the locals favorite cove beaches where you can spend the entire day basking by the sea.
The South Dalmatian islands
Easiest to reach from the mainland from any of the many marinas from Split to Makarska, the island of Brač is a must-visit for its beaches. The white sand beach at Zlatni Rat, Bol is one of the most beautiful you’ll find on your Croatia sailing trips. The nearby area is protected and the waters are a favorite of surfers and kite-surfers from across the world.
Kornati National Park
These are the beaches you want out of a sailing trip. Kornati National Park is a protected area where you can sail for days around 89 unbelievable islands, islets and reefs. Like a choose-your-own-adventure for beaches, take your pick from the rocky shores or sandy havens.
Ready to find your perfect Croatian islands, beaches, seafood, and more? Check flights from your home airport to go sail Croatia this summer!👇