When you think about Croatia, you probably imagine the crystal-clear of the Adriatic sea, warm Mediterranean climate, fabulous nature and amazing cultural heritage. With 1,244 islands, more than 6,000 kilometres of coastline and more than 2,600 hours of sun per year, Croatia is an ideal destination for spending unforgettable summer holidays. To get you ready for your vacation, we present you the seven best beaches in Croatia that deserve your attention.
ZLATNI RAT BEACH
The beach of Zlatni Rat (Golden horn) on the island of Brač is not just the most famous beach in Croatia, but maybe also its most famous site in general. Unlike most beaches which have a shape of a crescent, Zlati rat is a huge beak-shaped mass of smooth white pebbles expanding into the Adriatic Sea for approximately 400 meters. Under the intense sun rays the beach shines with a beautiful golden colour, hence its name. The surrounding turquoise sea and lush pine forests create an amazing contrast that just calls for Instagram posts. Zlati rat is special also because it changes position according to the winds and the marine currents.
ST. IVAN BEACH
On the western coast of Cres island in the Kvarner Bay lies almost forgotten village of Lubenice. This romantic settlement is sitting on a cliff high above a gougers and hard-to-reach Saint Ivan Beach. It is considered one of the best-hidden secrets of northern Croatia as it can only be accessed in two ways: by a boat from nearby towns or by walking down a rough terrain (descent of 378 meters). The hardest part is getting back up!
Because of its remoteness, the beach of St. Ivan can offer unspoiled nature and tranquillity rarely found in these parts of the Adriatic.
Visit St. Ivan beach on a private gulet or a sailing boat from Opatija or Pula on the peninsula of Istria.
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When we talk about best beaches in Croatia, we simply cannot leave out the magnificent Sakarun Beach located on Dugi otok (Long island) just north of the famous Kornati National Park.
This spectacular beach is approximately 800 meters long and renown for its white sand and crystal clear blue waters. The water on Sakarun beach is not very deep, making it a perfect destination for families with children. The beach is surrounded by pine trees that complete the landscape in a unique way and offer a pleasant shade in hot summer days.
Being relatively remote, you should take more than just a day to visit Dugi otok and perhaps combine it with a sailing trip from Zadar.
You will find Stiniva on almost every list of best beaches in Croatia. It is a beautiful 30-meters-long cove full of white pebbles and feels like a place from a pirate move. Located in the southern part of the island of Vis, Stiniva beach is hidden among the rocks in a wild natural landscape with difficult access.
Since Vis is already the furthest from the coast of all inhabited Croatian islands, the area is usually not overcrowded. Besides, Stiniva beach is only accessible via a narrow and poorly maintained road or by boat, which makes it even more secluded.
Many daily excursions from Hvar or Split to the blue cave also make a stop at this gorgeous little paradise on Earth.
Spend your next summer holidays in Croatia
Branje is the most popular and beautiful beach in Dubrovnik. It is a magnificent beach of sand and stones with crystalline waters, but the main advantage of Branje beach are the excellent views of the Dubrovnik’s historic centre and the nearby island of Lokrum.
Since it is located in one of the most visited towns in the whole of Croatia, Branje beach often gets overcrowded, so try planing your visit in the off-season time (late September or October) when the Adriatic Sea is still warm enough for a swim.
However, if you visit in the summer, keep your eyes open as you might spot a celebrity, since famous people who visit Dubrovnik like to hang out here.
The Baška beach on the southern part of the island of Krk (Croatia’s largest island) is a real wonder. It is almost two kilometres long and surrounded by a high mountain range that gives it a special character.
Baška is a pebble beach with crystal clear waters which makes it very popular with tourists from central Europe who don’t want to drive all the way to Dalmatia. That makes is rather crowded in the summer, so it is worth visiting in other seasons of the year.
To avoid the masses, visit Krk outside the season or take a popular Kvarner Bay cruise from Opatija, which dose not include Baška, but will make stops at others more secluded and equally stunning beaches.
Driving from Split to Dubrovnik along the scenic Adriatic Highway you will pass a stretch of gorgeous coastline known as the Makarska Riviera. This 60-kilometres long belt squeezed between the Adriatic Sea and Biokovo mountain range is one of the most popular summer destinations in Croatia also featured in our popular week-long cruise from Split.
Makarska Riviera is made up of numerous breathtaking little beaches, but the one that really stands out is Punta Rata in the tiny town of Brela, 25 kilometres south of Omiš. This handsome peace of Croatian coastline full of white pebbles is surrounded by pine trees that provide protection from hot Dalmatian sun. Try visiting in the off-season months to really enjoy it.
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