Why Croatia Should Be Your Next Travel Destination: 10 Compelling Reasons to Visit
One particularly unique country in southeastern Europe has a rich history, breathtaking landscapes, delicious cuisine, and a vibrant culture that will charm any traveler. Croatia is a magnificent destination that should be your next destination, that boasts from its ancient walled cities to its sparkling coastline. I bet half of the world knows Croatia because of its football and basketball national teams. But this country is not only famous for its sports. With one of the most popular "Game of Thrones" series, people are intrigued by seeing the capital city of Westeros, King's Landing - in real life - Dubrovnik. Croatia is more than just a "Game of Thrones" filming location cause those who have been there want to return. We prepared 10 compelling reasons list why Croatia should be your next travel destination. Get ready.
1.Shengen Zone Boost
Great news for travelers! Croatia has recently joined the Schengen zone, which means easier travel to and from the country. This move is expected to increase tourism in Croatia, which already has a thriving industry. (The Game oF Thrones definitely boosted Croatia’s tourism. And now getting there has never been easier with planes flying to and from Croatia treated as domestic flights.
2.The Game Of Thrones
Many of the show's iconic scenes were filmed in Croatia, and you can visit them all during your trip. Explore King's Landing in Dubrovnik, where you can see Bokar Fortress and St Dominika Street, the setting for most of the market scenes and City Watch. Take a stroll along the same path that a certain character did in the infamous "walk of shame" scene. Yeap, you can walk the same steps as Cersei. The place is called the Baroque Jesuit staircase leading up to the Church of St. Ignatius. Lovrijenac Fortress, once built by the Croatians as a defensive stronghold, served as the venue for King Joffrey's name day tournament. In Split, visit Diocletian's Palace, which houses Daenerys' throne room. And for a truly exotic experience, head to Lokrum Island, also known as Qarth, where Daenerys received a frosty welcome from the Spice King. These are just a few of the many Game of Thrones must-see locations for fans of the show and history lovers.
Dubrovnik is a city that will take your breath away, even if you’re a frequent traveler. Strolling through the charming old town’s limestone streets, surrounded by baroque buildings, feels like stepping back in time. The ancient city walls, which once protected a sophisticated republic for centuries, are a marvel. You won’t want to miss the Franciscan Monastery and Museum, a 14th-century landmark with incredible architecture. For a powerful and moving experience, visit the War Photo Limited gallery, featuring exhibitions by New Zealand photojournalist Wade Goddard. His work in the Balkans in the 1990s shows the effects of war on both innocents and combatants.
4. Beautifulul Nature & National Parks
Croatia boasts a plethora of breathtaking sights that will leave you in awe. From the stunning turquoise waterfalls and lakes of the national parks to the picturesque red-roofed towns along the coast and islands and the striking coastline and crystal-clear waters of the Adriatic Sea, Croatia is a country of unparalleled beauty. You may have heard about marvelous national parks in Croatia.
Plitvice nation park is a true gem, established in 1949 as one of the oldest national parks in Southeast Europe. What sets it apart from other parks is how easily accessible it is, with well-connected roads making it a perfect day trip from wherever you're staying. But let's talk about the real star of the show - the sixteen interconnected lakes and waterfalls. You'll feel like you're in a fairy tale as you wander through the deep woodland, home to various wildlife animals, from deer to bears to rare bird species. With 300 square kilometers to explore, you'll want to make a full day of hiking and basking in the natural beauty of this UNESCO World Heritage Site.
5. Budget-friendly destination
With incredibly low prices, you can stretch your euros further than you ever thought possible. The Croatian Kuna is the local currency, and you'll be pleasantly surprised at the exchange rate, with one euro equalling around 7.5 Kuna. Food and drinks are a steal, with a pint of local beer in a bar costing only about 15 Kuna - time to treat yourself and buy a round for your friends too! Flights to Croatia are also budget-friendly, with plenty of low-cost airlines offering great deals. And once you're in the country, getting around with cheap bus, train and tram rides is a breeze, costing a fraction of what you'd pay in the other country. If you're willing to forego hotel chains, you can find plenty of affordable accommodation options, especially in smaller towns that offer excellent day trip opportunities. Remember to use the Ratepunk hotel price comparison tool that ensures you the best prices. Eating where the locals do will save you money and introduce you to delicious traditional cuisine. And if we started talking about food…
6. Marvellous Gastronomy
Croatia is a foodie's paradise, with a rich culinary heritage that varies from region to region. Every part of Croatia has its own unique take on traditional dishes, so your taste buds will never get bored while exploring the country. On the mainland, you'll find hearty, Slavic-inspired meals with plenty of garlic and paprika, while the coastal regions are influenced by Greek, Roman, and Mediterranean cuisines, featuring lots of olive oil and rosemary. Croatian cuisine boasts some amazing delicacies, including white truffles from Istria, Croatian-style Punjena Paprika (stuffed peppers similar to Hungarian version), and goulash. With such a long coastline, seafood is a staple of Croatian cuisine, and you'll enjoy the freshest mackerel, anchovies, and even lobsters from the Adriatic Sea.
There are many dining places where you can feel blissful satisfaction by enjoying meals. I won't go into the details because it's easily findable online. However, one particular spot is worth highlighting- the best restaurant in Croatia - Alfred Keller. If you can visit Mali Lošinj island, reserve a table at this fine-dining & one-Michelin Star restaurant.
Wine lovers will also find plenty tasting options in Croatia, where wine has been produced since ancient Greek times. The islands of Dalmatia are famous for their grape cultivation and wine production, with a mix of both: red and white varieties. So don't miss out on visiting vineyards, going on cellar tours, and meeting the winemakers themselves. And if you find something you like, buy it directly from the producers for the best prices.
7. Stunning Beaches
I bet people travel to Thailand or Bali just because they don't know that Croatia has some of the most incredible beaches in Europe. I don’t like to play favorites, but let’s just say they’re pretty amazing! Take Spiaza, for example. Located on the charming little island of Susak, getting there by ferry only adds to the allure. Zlatni Rat, also known as the Golden Cape, located in Brac is a must-visit. The beach tip's shape changes with the wind, making it a unique experience every time you visit. It's also a protected area.
If you're looking for a more secluded spot away from the crowds, consider renting a boat from Hvar and heading to Stiniva Beach. This hidden gem is tucked away between towering cliffs, giving you the feeling of being in your very own paradise.
8. Exploring Croatian Islands
Croatia boasts more than 1200 beautiful islands, making it a top destination for island hopping and sailing. Depending on your preferences, budget, and time, you can rent a sailing boat, speed boat, yacht, or catamaran. From the stunning Elaphiti, Hvar, Pakleni, and Korčula Islands, you could spend a whole month in Croatia and still not see them all. Incredible, isn't it? Zadar, Split, and Dubrovnik are excellent bases for your islands exploring adventure, as they are near many sought-after islands such as Dugi Otok, Mljet, Vis, Solta, and Brac. With countless islands to discover, each with its own unique history and natural beauty, Croatia gives you one more compelling reason to book your flight!
9. Extraordinary Museum that Reminiscence Love
While traveling, I try to visit at least one museum: the national museum, art gallery, X city's museum, or some quirky museum I have not heard of before. And yes, there is one particular museum you should definitely visit if you stay in Zagreb, Croatia—the Museum of Broken Relationships.
Originally conceived as a temporary project, the Museum of Broken Relationships was first unveiled by founders Dražen Grubišić and Olinka Vištica in 2006 at the Zagreb Salon art biennial. In 2010, after some years of showing the art project worldwide, the creators turned the famous temporary project into a museum. There, visitors can see personal items donated by individuals from all around the world, which serve as tangible mementos of past relationships that have ended. The items on display include everything from clothing and love letters to locks of hair and everyday objects that hold special significance to their owners. To visitors as well; because it shows that every love story leaves something behind.
10. Adventurous Activities in Croatia
Tourist can spend their time leisurely or experience some thrilling adventures in Croatia. Several adventure sports activities are sure to get your heart racing. You can go kayaking on the crystal clear waters of the Adriatic Sea, explore hidden caves while scuba diving, or take a thrilling white-water rafting trip down the Cetina River. If you prefer to stay on land, you can try rock climbing in the Paklenica National Park, mountain biking, or hiking on the rugged terrain of the Velebit Mountains. It's up to you how you want to spend your Croatian holidays.