Croatia sailing holidays offer an opportunity to explore the country’s idyllic Adriatic coast. It’s over 2000km long and mixes Roman ruins with sheltered harbours. In places, olive groves rise above ancient fishing villages. There are palm fringed bays backed by sleek resorts. And more than 1000 islands scatter across its waters. The information in this article is taken from The Rough Guide to Croatia, your essential guide for visiting Croatia.
It's easy to see why Croatia is one of Europe’s most popular sailing destinations.
Here’s a guide for your first sailing holiday in Croatia.
The southern Dalmatian islands are ideal for first time sailing holidays. Most routes here involve round trips from Split or Dubrovnik, so you'll need at least a week. But allow eight days or more for a one-way trip from Split to Dubrovnik (or vice versa).
High summer in Croatia is busy, but the weather’s glorious. Expect averages of 26–27°C in July and August, with similar sea temperatures. And you can always look forward to snorkelling, SUP and swimming in the clear, balmy Adriatic.
Croatia's sailing season runs May to the end of September. Pay attention to these dates. Temperatures drop to 15°C in October and many businesses shut up shop for the year in autumn. So if you're tempted by start or end of season deals, you may not get the holiday you envisaged.
For first time sailing holidays in Croatia it’s a good idea to book a skippered yacht. You’ll learn sailing skills along the way. But you’ll also be free to relax and enjoy the experience.
Expert local skippers are invaluable on first time sailing holidays. They’re able to recommend routes and adjust them to respond to weather changes. Plus, they know the top swimming spots, attractions, restaurants and islands to visit. You could also consider booking a host or hostess to take care of cooking and cleaning.
More experienced sailors can opt for a “bareboat” Croatia sailing charter. Requirements for these vary between operators. But you will need full certification, such as the ICC (International Certificate of Competence).
For tailored Croatia sailing holidays, get in touch and we can connect you with a local expert to plan and book your ideal trip.
Not all yachts in Croatia are the same. They vary from cosy set-ups to floating paradigms of luxury. However, most companies offer a range of different boats. See what’s available from your chosen operator. And always be realistic about expectations of space and facilities.
At lower prices you’ll find boats smaller and older, with cramped cabins and shared bathrooms. Modern, high-end catamarans offer a different experience. They’re often fitted with plush furnishings, en-suites and extensive deck space.
Solo travellers booking a group trip with budget or youth operators may have to share a cabin, or even a double bed.
You might have seen the glamorous promos for Croatia's Yacht Week. But beware. This mega flotilla trip for moneyed 20-somethings offers the party of a lifetime. However, it’s far from sustainable and doesn’t reflect Croatian culture.
Local sailors have safety concerns about inexperienced Yacht Week skippers. And in the past, some towns have even refused moorings to the boozy crowds.
Croatia has something for everyone. So take a few days before or after your sailing holiday to explore the country.
Ready for a trip to Croatia? Check out the snapshot Rough Guide to Croatia. Read more about the best time to go to Croatia, the best places to visit and best things to do in Croatia. For inspiration use the Croatia Itineraries from The Rough Guide to Croatia and our local travel experts. A bit more hands on, learn about getting there, getting around the country and where to stay once you are there.
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