#01 Plitvice Lakes National Park

A bewitching sequence of foaming waterfalls and turquoise lakes, hemmed in by forest-clad hills.

Things not to miss: Plitvice lakes and waterfalls, Croatia.© Denis Kichatof/Shutterstock 

 #02 Pula Amphitheatre

Imperial Rome’s greatest gift to the eastern Adriatic, this awesome arena still serves as the venue for pack-’em-in summertime concerts.

#08 Pula Amphitheatre

#03 Sunsets in Zadar

Alfred Hitchcock raved about them, and you will be bowled over too, especially now sunsets in Zadar are accompanied by the complimentary sound-and-light effects of the famous Greeting to the Sun and Sea Organ art installations.

People silhouette on colorful sunset in Zadar, Dalmatia, Croatia© xbrchx/Shutterstock

#04 Hvar: the island

Beautifully unspoiled and pitted with a wealth of bays and coves, the island of Hvar still has what it takes to enchant the seclusion-seeker.

Things not to miss: Old harbor at Adriatic sea. Hvar island, Croatia.© Evgeniya Moroz/Shutterstock 

#05 Museum of Broken Relationships 

This mould-breaking museum of the human emotions is witty, well designed and wryly philosophical all at the same time.

Things not to miss: Museum of Broken Relationships, Zagreb, Croatia.© Globe Guide Media Inc/Shutterstock 

#06 Sea Kayaking

The Dalmatian coast is often best enjoyed from the water, and what better way to see it than by taking a leisurely paddle.

Things not to miss: Kayak, Dubrovnik, Croatia.© lazyllama/Shutterstock

#07 Čigoć

This bucolic timber-built village in the Lonjsko polje wetlands is the famed nesting-ground of white storks.

#08 Šibenik

Once the ugly duckling of Adriatic tourism, Šibenik’s recent urban makeover sheds new light on its stupendous fortresses, music festivals and medieval gardens.

Things not to miss: Sibenik, Croatia.© Hrvoje Bakovic/Shutterstock 

#09 Walking Dubrovnik’s walls

The briefest of trots round the battlements will serve as a breathtaking introduction to this ancient city.

Things not to miss: Old town and harbor of Dubrovnik, Croatia.© SchnepfDesign/Shutterstock 

#10 Kornati Islands 

Largely uninhabited and with tourist facilities limited to a handful of shoreline restaurants and the odd yachting berth, the Kornati represent the Adriatic at its most untouched.

Archipelago Islands of the Kornati national park in Croatia.© Ivan Pikunic/Shutterstock

#11 Varaždin

A postcard-perfect Baroque town, complete with opulent squares, crumbling palaces and a unique garden cemetery.

#12 Pag cheese

The uncompromisingly arid, sage-covered landscape of Pag island produces this addictively tangy sheep’s cheese. Visit local dairies to buy your own wedge of yellow heaven.

Pag cheese in Croatia© Natalia Bratslavsky/Shutterstock

 

#13 Hvar: the Town

The swankiest resort on the Adriatic is full of temptations, whether you’re a culture vulture, Mediterranean foodie or cocktail-bar cruiser.

View of the Hvar town, Hvar island, Dalmatia, Croatia.© Kite_rin/Shutterstock

#14 Skradinski buk

Head for Krka National Park to admire this stunning series of waterfalls. Don’t forget to take your bathing costume.

Things not to miss: Skradinski Buk Waterfall In Krka National Park, Dalmatia, Croatia.© ZM_Photo/Shutterstock 

#15 Pelješac peninsula

Explore rugged mountain scenery, quiet coves and unspoilt seaside villages in a region renowned for its robust red wines and fantastic seafood.

Things not to miss: Village Drace, Peljesac peninsula near Dubrovnik, Croatia.© OPIS Zagreb/Shutterstock 

#16 Diocletian’s Palace, Split

Taken over by the townsfolk centuries ago, the Roman emperor’s pied-à-terre now forms the chaotic heart of the modern city.

Things not to miss: Diocletian's Palace, Split, Croatia.© Kirk Fisher/Shutterstock 

#17 Summer festivals

Pretty much every genre of music is catered for in Croatia’s summer-long festival calendar, with indie rock at InMusic, cutting-edge dance music at Tisno and dub-to-dubstep extravaganzas at Outlook, near Pula.

Things not to miss: Fans enjoying the concert.© supergenijalac/Shutterstock 

#18 Vukovar

Eastern Croatia’s most compelling destination, Vukovar combines state-of-the-art museum attractions with sites commemorating the 1991 siege.

#19 Peka

Slow-roasting lamb, octopus or other local goodies under the ember-covered metal lid known as a peka is the traditional route to a deliciously succulent meal.

#20 Rovinj

Riviera-town chic collides with fishing-port charm in the most Italianate of Istria’s coastal resorts.

© Inu/Shutterstock 

#21 Truffle days, Istria 

The start of the truffle-hunting season is marked by festivities throughout Istria in September – especially in Buzet, where the world’s largest truffle omelette is eagerly scoffed by an army of celebrants.

Things not to miss: White Truffles.© Alessandro Cristiano/Shutterstock 

#22 Trsteno

Relax in Renaissance gardens in this beautiful coastal village just north of Dubrovnik.

#23 The Elaphite Islands

These easy-to-explore, largely car-free islands offer great hiking, sandy beaches and plenty of peace and quiet.

Things not to miss: Elaphites Islands as seen from Dubrovnik, Croatia.© RachelH126/Shutterstock 

#24 Rakija

There’s nothing like a shot of rakija (grape brandy) to oil the wheels of social intercourse. Try herb-infused travarica or carob-flavoured rogačica for a truly heart- and soul-warming experience.

#25 Walking the Premužic Trail

Croatia’s most exhilarating long-distance hiking route takes in mountain ridges, dense forests and awesome views.

#04 Walking the Premužic Trail

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