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Reasons to love Croatia.

Why charter in Croatia?

Looking northwest along the coast, across Brijuni, you get an idea of what a paradise of bays, islands and inlets Croatia offers
Looking northwest along the coast, across Brijuni, you get an idea of what a paradise of bays, islands and inlets Croatia offers

Croatia is now firmly on the map as a desirable cruising ground for yacht charter, and for very good reason. The entire Dalmatian region is stunningly beautiful, and exploring this attractive area on a yacht is especially appropriate given that much of its 3,600 miles of coastline comprises islands and hidden coves only accessible from the water.

The Chirch of St Blaise in Dubrovnik testifies to the cultural riches of Croatia. The country has several UNESCO World Heritage Sites to its name
The Chirch of St Blaise in Dubrovnik testifies to the cultural riches of Croatia. The country has several UNESCO World Heritage Sites to its name

With more than 1,400 islands, beautiful beaches and pristine nature, the entire region was seemingly made for the waterborne. Add to this the interesting historical sites waiting to be explored ashore and you have the perfect combination for a compelling yacht charter.

Where to visit

Ports like Hvar are ringed with restaurants and bars and buzzing with life day and night
Ports like Hvar are ringed with restaurants and bars and buzzing with life day and night

With such an incredibly varied array of coastal landscapes, Croatia has something to suit every type of yacht charter. Whether you want beach clubs for parties and cocktail bars and restaurants for evening adventure, or remote anchorages and Tolkienesque landscapes, not to mention the immersive history and culture, rest assured that on a well-planned charter every guest will find what they are looking for in Croatia.

Must-see attractions in Croatia

The port town of Pučišća on the island of Brač showcases the local stone
The port town of Pučišća on the island of Brač showcases the local stone

One of the largest islands in the archipelago, the island of Brač, is best known for the picturesque villages built from local limestone. Biševo, meanwhile, is one of the furthest islands from mainland Croatia and also the closest island to Italy, and bares easy comparison to the Italian island of Capri, complete with its own blue grotto.

Take the tender to the beguiling blue grotto on the island of Biševo. Go before breakfast to beat the crowds
Take the tender to the beguiling blue grotto on the island of Biševo. Go before breakfast to beat the crowds

The place to be seen

The Riviera-style chic of Hvar and the off-lying Pakleni islands always attract the superyacht set
The Riviera-style chic of Hvar and the off-lying Pakleni islands always attract the superyacht set

The popular island of Hvar is home to more than the famous harbourside Carpe Diem bar and its sister beach club on the nearby island of Marinkovac, although if you are interested in a night out then Hvar certainly has the beach club scene to keep you entertained 24 hours a day.

The harbour is the beating heart of Hvar day and night
The harbour is the beating heart of Hvar day and night

Boutique life

Hvar lies within 13th century walls and is overlooked by a hilltop fortress
Hvar lies within 13th century walls and is overlooked by a hilltop fortress

Just about everywhere you step ashore has a variety of new and authentic experiences, and along with its nightlife, the island is a paradise for history lovers. Hvar’s main town is built around a Baroque-style harbour, akin to St Mark’s in Venice. It could not be better designed for an after-dinner stroll along the promenade, nestled by the water’s edge, and around the Piazza and tiny medieval streets.

The southern side of the island of Hvar has vineyards growing the native Bogdanuša grape
The southern side of the island of Hvar has vineyards growing the native Bogdanuša grape

Pristine natural beauty

Two interconnected saltwater lakes lie amid the oldest pine forest in Europe in Mljet National Park, where there are great cycling and walking trails
Two interconnected saltwater lakes lie amid the oldest pine forest in Europe in Mljet National Park, where there are great cycling and walking trails

The island of Mljet is located in the far south of Dalmatia and is home to the Mljet National Park. Take the tender ashore here and discover a forested interior, with two interconnected salt lakes encircled by bike paths. 

Secret spot – Biševo is a tiny island off the coast of Vis where you can anchor up in an arched inlet without anyone else around. The water is incredibly blue and deep with great diving and snorkelling opportunities.

Crystal clear waters invite snorkelling safaris, with so much to explore
Crystal clear waters invite snorkelling safaris, with so much to explore

Dive in

With so much coastline, and so many islands to explore, Croatia was really made for holidays on a yacht. Located in the northern part of Dalmatia, the Kornati archipelago is known for its deserted islands.

Natural beauty

The Kornati islands have an unspoilt natural beauty and plenty of islands you can call your own
The Kornati islands have an unspoilt natural beauty and plenty of islands you can call your own

The Kornati National Park is protected and has hundreds of uninhabited islands, islets and reefs that provide calm bays for all manner of watersports. The Krka National Park is another of Croatia’s stunning natural wonders. The Krka River runs through the heart of the park and has stunningly photogenic waterfalls where you can take a shower in fresh water beneath the cascading falls.

The famous falls at Krka National Park, one of a series of seven in the park
The famous falls at Krka National Park, one of a series of seven in the park

Golden sands

Beautiful Zlatni Rat is the southernmost tip on the island of Brač
Beautiful Zlatni Rat is the southernmost tip on the island of Brač

The island of Brač is home to the breathtaking 500m beach of Zlatni Rat. Often compared to the Maldives and nicknamed the Golden Horn, the sandy beach here juts right out into the sea, and at the narrowest part of the channel where the wind funnels the conditions are ideal for windsurfing. On the island’s north coast however the waters are more sheltered and better for kayaking or paddleboarding, with hidden coves and deserted beaches just waiting to be discovered by your guests.

Sheltered Lovrečina beach on the island's northern coast, with the mountainous mainland across the water
Sheltered Lovrečina beach on the island's northern coast, with the mountainous mainland across the water

Diving and snorkelling

Two world wars have left Croatia with some fascinating and accessible dive sites but some wrecks date back to Roman times
Two world wars have left Croatia with some fascinating and accessible dive sites but some wrecks date back to Roman times

The waters surrounding Vis also offer excellent diving and snorkeling opportunities, with two Roman-era shipwrecks, and a number of wrecks dating from the Second World War. For the novice snorkellers in the group, the island of Lopud near Dubrovnik is the best place to start as there is a quiet cove ideally suited to learning the basics.

Broker's tip

The water is warm well into October, and even in the high season months of July and August there are so many bays and coves that there will always be an empty cove for you
The water is warm well into October, and even in the high season months of July and August there are so many bays and coves that there will always be an empty cove for you

Cultural highs

St Nicholas' Fortress, which guards the entrance channel to Šibenik, is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site as a Venetian work of defence built between the 15th and 17th centuries
St Nicholas' Fortress, which guards the entrance channel to Šibenik, is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site as a Venetian work of defence built between the 15th and 17th centuries

Croats’ pride in their country is evident wherever you go and rightfully so. Despite having had more than their share of conflict, the mainland and islands remain relatively unspoilt and are beautifully preserved. Reminiscent of the ancient civilisations of the Eastern Mediterranean but also heavily influenced by their West Mediterranean neighbours, Roman, Venetian and Austrian influences are all evident in the architecture and cuisine.

The 2,000 year old Roman arena in Pula is one of the sixth largest surviving Roman arenas
The 2,000 year old Roman arena in Pula is one of the sixth largest surviving Roman arenas

Croatia has no fewer than ten UNESCO World Heritage Sites, with ten more on the tentative list. The old-towns of Dubrovnik and Split are two of these, and are both known for their spectacular fortifications and cinematic views (so much so in fact that they were both used as locations in the Game of Thrones saga).

Living history

The stunning Diocletian Palace in Split, another UNESCO World Heritage Site, was the capital of Dalmatia and one of the largest cities of the late Roman empire
The stunning Diocletian Palace in Split, another UNESCO World Heritage Site, was the capital of Dalmatia and one of the largest cities of the late Roman empire

Split grew up around the vast site of a waterfront residence completed by the Roman emperor in AD305, known as Diocletian’s Palace. The towers, fortifications, vaults and slave quarters here have been turned into a warren of boutiques, restaurants and cafes, and the hubbub within the walls of the palace is like a trip back in time.

Dubrovnik is encircled by huge fortress walls and walking them is a must-do activity
Dubrovnik is encircled by huge fortress walls and walking them is a must-do activity

The larger, and more famous, city of Dubrovnik is very similar, with the social heart of the city remaining firmly within its impressive fortress walls. The Old Town is a symphony of cream coloured stone churches and cobblestone streets, lined with bustling cafes, restaurants and small shops. Walking Dubrovnik’s city walls is a must. Time it right and avoid the tourist crowds early evening when the temperatures have cooled and the pink light reflecting on the ochre rooftops is at its best.

Broker's tip

Cruising the south coast of Vis you will spot several tunnels from World War II in the cliffs. Head inland to discover the caves in which future Yugoslav leader Marshal Tito was based during the war
Cruising the south coast of Vis you will spot several tunnels from World War II in the cliffs. Head inland to discover the caves in which future Yugoslav leader Marshal Tito was based during the war

Dinner reservations

Fishing is a strong economy and the variety of fresh seafood available everywhere is remarkable
Fishing is a strong economy and the variety of fresh seafood available everywhere is remarkable

Croatia offers an array of culinary experiences, with traditional recipes reinvented and locally sourced ingredients at their finest thanks to the Mediterranean climate. Markets overflow with ripe vegetables, while sustainably plucked seafood is the order of the day while cruising the islands.

Fishing boats of all sizes supply local restaurants with their exquisite catch
Fishing boats of all sizes supply local restaurants with their exquisite catch

Tourism may have taken over as the main economy, but there are still plenty of skilled fishermen, and in the early evening you can see groups of men with their boats on the quaysides gutting the day’s catch. Most restaurants have arrangements with specific fishermen, with deliveries from the boat straight to their door.

Where to find the best seafood

Many quayside restaurants have their own keep tanks built into the quay to keep the catch fresh
Many quayside restaurants have their own keep tanks built into the quay to keep the catch fresh

There are said to be more than 400 varieties of edible sea creature in this part of the Adriatic, and every day the menu changes depending on the catch of the day, be it barbecued sardines, wood fired sea bass, fresh tuna steak, giant langoustines, octopus and squid.  

Zori overlooks Vinogradisce Bay in the Pakleni islands just south of Hvar, where Chef Iva Tomlinovic creatively reinterprets traditional Dalmatian dishes
Zori overlooks Vinogradisce Bay in the Pakleni islands just south of Hvar, where Chef Iva Tomlinovic creatively reinterprets traditional Dalmatian dishes

The octopus at the Pojada restaurant on Vis comes highly recommended, while on Hvar the shaded beach taverna Zori is known for a relaxed but elegant vibe, with knockout dishes including Nobu-style marinated tuna tartare. While on the mainland you could also head to Gil’s Little Bistro in Dubrovnik, famous for its French fusion dishes as well as its unique location in the citadel’s ramparts.

Broker's tip

Take the tender to the Bowa Beach Club on Sipan and enjoy a fresh red snapper under the shade of the thatched-roof cabanas with a perfect view
Take the tender to the Bowa Beach Club on Sipan and enjoy a fresh red snapper under the shade of the thatched-roof cabanas with a perfect view

 

Chic nightlife

When the sun sets, the town is alive with sophistication and celebration
When the sun sets, the town is alive with sophistication and celebration

When the sun goes down the vibrant cities of Split and Dubrovnik come alive with a buzz and energy, while over on the islands glamorous beach clubs and trendy bars attract the superyacht set.

Mornings start slowly here, you ease yourself into the day in a way that guarantees a relaxed mood
Mornings start slowly here, you ease yourself into the day in a way that guarantees a relaxed mood

Here the pace of life by day takes into account the partying of the previous night, and the days start late with coffee on the quayside, before taking a day bed at one of the beachfront clubs and then enjoying sunset cocktails, rooftop bars, and dancing under the trees all night long.

Island style

Take the tender ashore and stretch out on a daybed and late morning eases into the afternoon, all to a chilled live soundtrack
Take the tender ashore and stretch out on a daybed and late morning eases into the afternoon, all to a chilled live soundtrack

Sitting right on the water’s edge, Noa Beach Club on Pag Island is a huge beach club with all-day entertainment. Over on Hvar, the notorious nightspot Carpe Diem put the island firmly on the superyacht map.

Party into the night as big name DJs run the show with the tracks you love
Party into the night as big name DJs run the show with the tracks you love

By day it is a chilled out bar with cabanas, by night the waterside setting plays host to international guest DJs and full moon parties. Come midnight and its sister bar Carpe Diem Beach also provides a further labyrinth of bars and dancefloors.

Broker's tip

The bohemian Hula Hula is a welcome addition to Hvar’s aprés beach scene with crafted cocktails and funky DJs spinning their discs as the sun sets over the Adriatic
The bohemian Hula Hula is a welcome addition to Hvar’s aprés beach scene with crafted cocktails and funky DJs spinning their discs as the sun sets over the Adriatic

Contact your Burgess charter expert to find out how much fun you can have this summer cxruising Croatia

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