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Things to do in Croatia: what are the best things to see there
iVisa
10 min read
Updated on May 14, 2024

Are you looking for a beautiful country for your next vacation? Visiting Croatia you’ll have an unforgettable experience. The destination holds a rich history preserved in the town walls and is blessed with fantastic natural landscapes. No matter what your points of interest are, there will be a place you’ll love.

There are many things to do in Croatia, and among the top tourist attractions, you have beautiful islands, UNESCO world heritage sites, parks, and historic cities. There is no shortage of national parks, such as the Plitvice Lakes National Park and Krka National Park, and terrific beaches like Zlatni Rat and Hvar.

But with so many options, “What are the best things to do in Croatia?”. iVisa will tell you what places you can’t miss on this trip. You also should check the Croatia travel guide to find further information and be prepared to visit Croatia, such as travel documents, weather information, and costs during the trip. So let’s discover which attractions will be on your itinerary and prepare to live an unforgettable experience in beautiful Croatian lands!

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How many days is enough to visit Croatia

You’ll see that there are many fun things to do in Croatia. Knowing how much time you have to spend in the country is essential to choose how many attractions you will see.

You could spend a whole month getting to know the Croatian Culture and visit the fantastic cities at your own pace. But if you are looking for a short vacation, a 10-day trip will be enough to explore Croatia and see some of the most popular attractions.

It’s not a very large country, so you can arrive at the airport and rent a car to go from one city to another. You can easily explore nearby towns by staying in the biggest cities, like Zagreb or Dubrovnik. Ferry rides are also a fantastic option to explore the villages on the coast.

The best option is to choose two cities full of attractions to spend two or three days, then make a day trip to the smaller ones.

Top Croatia attractions: What not to miss in Croatia

Do you prefer to visit an old town full of historical monuments or enjoy sunny days on a beach in the Adriatic Sea? Both are among the many things to do in Croatia. You can enjoy a short ferry ride or a road trip to go from one city to another and see the terrific places in this country.

Read below for the most notable attractions you’ll find, and build your itinerary for the trip!

Historic popular tourist attractions

Croatia has a rich history, which started with the Ancient Greeks and Romans settling in the area but also has important episodes marked by the Venetians and Ottomans' invasions. It has more than 2,000 years of history, and the world can still testify to its precious pieces.

The country hosts some fantastic museums, but the most impressive landmarks are the ancient ruins and city walls, which amaze tourists. Walking through cities like Dubrovnik, Pula or Split seems like traveling in time or visiting a movie location. You can read further information about the main historical destinations in the best cities to visit in Croatia blog.

This is a very welcoming country to tourists, and you can feel that energy while you visit some remarkable spots and learn more about Croatian culture.

Check out some places that you shouldn’t miss on this amazing trip.

Pula’s Arena

There are many cultural things to do in Croatia. Visiting a Roman Amphitheater is one of them. The Arena in the old town of Pula is iconic, a place that used to hold 20,000 spectators. The site was used to present the Gladiators' battles. Tourists can visit the underground passages and the cisterns that channel scented water to the public.

Dubrovick Old City Walls

Dubrovnik is an old town and one of the most important cities in Croatia, and it’s a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The city walls date back to the 13th century and are well preserved. They are 2km long and 25m high at some points. Walking over them, the visitors have an amazing view of the ocean and the city.

Diocletian’s Palace

The Diocletian Palace is one of the most fantastic things to see in Croatia! Located in Split, this is a historic palace built in the IV century. The landmark is a legacy from the era of the Roman emperor Diocletian and it holds the military camp, the Golden Gate, and the villa where the emperor retired.

Museum of Broken Relationships

This spot in Croatia's capital Zagreb is not exactly a history museum; it’s about failed love stories. The Museum of Broken Relationships presents a collection of objects from ex-lovers accompanied by brief descriptions. The Croatian Capitals attraction received the Kenneth Hudson Award for Europe's most innovative museum in 2011.

National Parks and Main Attractions for Nature Lovers

Croatia is a beautiful country to explore if you love nature. Besides the very well-known coastal area, there are incredible national parks, with magnific landscapes. The country keeps vast areas of vegetation well preserved. There are eight amazing national parks and 11 nature parks, spaces where you can enjoy unspoiled nature, waterfalls and rivers to dive in, great hiking trails, and many mysterious caves to discover.

Save your energy to enjoy some unique experiences in Croatia’s nature. Find the must-see attractions for your adventure below.

Plitvice Lakes National Park

This is a must-see natural attraction among the things to do in Croatia. There’s a lot to explore when you visit Plitvice Lakes. There are 16 terraced lakes, with some of the country's most beautiful cascades and waterfalls. Everything is located in a 295 square km area of forest reserve.

It’s a large park, so reserve an entire day to explore. If you want to see the whole place, you can choose a long trail, but several shorter routes also show most of the park's highlights. It’s one of the best destinations for hiking trails and enjoying nature!

Odysseus Cave in the Mljet National Park

Mljet is a unique Croatian Island that also holds the Odysseus Cave and the mysteries surrounding it. The legend says that Odysseus was shipwrecked and swam to this cave, where he took shelter. The island was dominated by the nymph Calypso, and he was charmed by her, staying seven years on the island. True or not, the cave is worth visiting!

Krka National Park

The Krka National Park is a perfect place to enjoy the natural beauty of Croatia. The park is142 square km, which includes two-thirds of the Krka river. The must-see attraction is the stunning waterfalls, including the famous Skradinski Buk falls, one of Croatia’s most famous sights.

Kornati National Park

Kornati Park is an excellent spot for nautical activities with more than 80 islands and a magnificent blue ocean. Located on the Dalmatian Coast, the archipelago is a fantastic destination for diving, sailing, camping, and hiking. It’s a reasonable ask if you want to enjoy the beach in a paradisiac landscape!

The Eye of the Earth

The Eye of the Earth is one of the sources of the Cetina River, the longest river in Dalmatia. This big hole with eye format has beautiful shades of blue and turquoise. It looks like a small lake, but when seen from above, it’s possible to notice that there’s something else beyond the surface. The hole penetrates depths unknown to the Earth, explored by divers who have made it to 115 meters.

Croatia's Adriatic Coast

If you are enticed by sunny days, blue ocean, and beautiful beaches, you must visit the Adriatic Coast. You can find small cities to relax and enjoy the beautiful landscapes, but the destination is also well-known for its party-hard vibe.

It’s more than 1,000 islands in the sparkly blue ocean. It’s an opportunity for sailing, but you can choose to sail for a day or enjoy a week-long party on a boat.

Besides boats and beaches, the region is very prepared to receive tourists. There are luxury hotels, great restaurants, and a lot of boutiques. Check below some of the main attractions on the coast.

Sea Organ

This innovative art installation is among the best things to do in Croatia. The Sea Organ is a Nikola Bašić piece, built in Zadar coastal in 2005. The organ has a series of large marble steps leading down to the ocean. Beneath each platform, a tube makes musical notes when the waves break underneath. A natural spectacle with a beautiful view!

Blue Cave

The name translates what this incredible geomorphological spot in the bay of Balun is. The blue light illuminates the cave when the sunlight hits the ocean's surface through the natural opening on its arched roof, reflecting off the seabed. You should visit on sunny days to see an intense blue color.

Zlatni Rat Beach

Zlatni Rat beach is located in the Golden Hor, near Hvar. It’s an excellent spot for those who love sports like windsurfing and kitesurfing, but also a family paradise to enjoy beach volley, jet skiing, banana boat rides, and an enormous water park.

Sail Week

Do you want to play hard? The Sail Week is a week of sailing and partying. There are diverse routes offered with options to enjoy hidden coves, swim in blue turquoise waters, and meet people from different parts of the world. It’s an excellent opportunity to spend a week visiting Croatian beaches such as Hvar, Zlatni Rat, and Vis.

lokrum Island

The island is 10 minutes from Dubrovnik, a great trip to enjoy in the region. The island is home to Botanical Gardens, planted in the 19th century. You can walk through a few hundred different kinds of trees and plants as well to appreciate some peacocks. Besides the gardens, the ruins of the Benedictine Monastery are worth visiting. The building has been there since medieval times, hidden among the vegetation.

Two cities to visit on Croatia's Dalmatian Coast

A smaller portion of the coast in the Adriatic ocean, the Dalmation Coast has 79 islands that run parallel to the coast and have some astonishing landscapes. The largest of them are Brač, Pag, and the famous Hvar. In this part of Croatia, you’ll find some big cities like Split, followed by Zadar and Šibenik.

The Dalmatia region is on the Adriatic Sea's east shore, stretching from the island of Rab, in the North, to the Bay of Kotor, in the South. An Illyrian tribe named Dalmatae settled in the area, which explains the name. Later in history, it became a Roman province, which will allow you to find many historical Roman elements in the old cities.

The Dalmatian Coast also has historical monuments and beautiful beaches that you shouldn't miss. Two of them are very special, and you can learn more about them below.

Hvar Island

Hvar Town is a place to enjoy seafood restaurants, boat trips, art galleries, and to buy the family presents in the souvenir shops. The small town is full of life, and it has some of the most gorgeous beaches in Croatia. The ancient village has preserved historical monuments like the St. Stephen’s Cathedral and natural treasures such as the Pakleni Islands and Dubovica beach.

Stari Grad

In the same way that Hvar is full of life, Stari Grad is calm and peaceful. This old city is very charming with its narrow streets and laneways, some dating back to 384 BC. It looks like a painting: white-stone streets, marble pathways, bougainvillea growing on street corners, and the ubiquitous smell of lavender wafting through the air.

Music Festivals

Croatians like to enjoy music and parties, especially in summer. The coast is known for its festivals, which have become a tradition in the country, and it becomes more famous each year during the European high season.

Electronic music is the primary genre, vibing the parties on the seaside. But more classical culture also has space in a country full of history like Croatia.

Read below for more about the biggest festivals.

Outlook Festival

The Outlook Festival takes place in Tisno summer, usually in August. It’s an excellent opportunity to enjoy Croatian boat parties. There are famous European DJs playing bass-heavy lineups, with performances on the beach.

Hideout Festival

The Hideout Festival also takes place in Croatian summer. It’s an electronic music festival on the famous Zrce Beach. Be prepared for five days and nights of music with great DJs. And, of course, enjoy the beautiful landscape between the mountains and the Adriatic Sea.

Dubrovnik Summer Festival

The Dubrovnik Summer Festival is an option for those who enjoy cultural activities. The event takes place in Dubrovnik since 1950, and it presents a program with classical music, theater, opera, and dance performances. Everything is pretty unique in the historical scenario of the old town.

As we said, there is no shortage of things to do in Croatia. Korcula Island, Mljet Island, Kornati Islands, the Plitvice National Park, the Krka National Park, and the Dalmatian coast. It’s definitely hard to narrow down your list of which places to visit.

But once you've planned how many days you want to stay, you must prepare the travel documents you’ll need for entry. Make sure you apply for the Announcement Form or the upcoming Croatia ETIAS. You can always count on iVisa services for a smooth arrival, obtaining the documents in just a few clicks!

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