I have never felt so amazed by any place as i have been by Croatia. It really is the pearl of Adriatic and so stunningly beautiful you keep thinking this is the most beautiful it is going to get but it goes ahead and trumps that and you just keep falling in love over and over again..
I went right during the season in July which was a good and a bad thing. I also had to endure the yacht week in Hvar, which can be a little overwhelming if you don’t own a yacht or have no interest in them.
Croatia on the whole is an absolutely beautiful country with a lot of different options to choose from and you can have amazing clear sea waters, magnificent islands, beautiful beaches and the best part was fresh seafood that was available and so cheap I had grilled fish throughout my trip and lost about 2% body fat which was a first for me to lose fat on a holiday while eating delicious, fresh food.
All three places that I went to Split, Havr and Dubrovnik were absolutely amazing in different respects. Split is a small city which has all aspects of a coastal city; small comfy city centre and good beaches and parties. I reached there on the second day of Uktra Europe festival and the whole town went mad for it.
Hvar is an island not so far from split and it is the biggest and the most important of all Croatian islands in Adriatic. It has an amazing party scene but what I really love about Hvar is the fact that you could party crazy one day and next day you could have a really relaxing day followed by a beautiful sunset completely on interrupted and again great food.
Dubrovnik is a city like no other you will pass climb stairs after stairs and be amazed at the beauty casually laying about and of course you will be roaming around in the ‘King’s Land’ from GoT..
The Racism Factor
I loved Croatia and while local people weren’t the friendliest I certainly didn’t feel like I was mistreated because of the colour of my skin, quite a pleasant stay throughout..
The Gay Factor
Croatia doesn’t have a developed gay scene but homophobia is generally unheard of. The local culture is still a bit conservative but I roamed around in speedos throughout the trip in Split and Hvar and didn’t feel ill at ease for a single second.
Value for Money
Croatia is generally cheap but islands can be quite expensive especially for food and partying . I would consider it medium range in comparison to Europe.
I reached Split on the afternoon of Saturday to spend 2 days there to then move to Hvar for another 2 days there. Finally 3 days in Dubrovnik to head back to take my flight back to London.
For Split I got a place through Airbnb which was right next to Diocletian’s palace which is in the heart of old city and close to everything. The bus station was also close but I generally used uber to go around especially to the beaches or you can hire cycle to ride around.
For Hvar I again got a place not so far from the Port which was very convenient because all the bars, clubs and restaurants were very close.
For Dubrovnik I left things a bit too long but finally got a place a bit outside the old town but the stairs were just a killer throughout the trip (but on the positive side I lost some weight so not so bad after all)
FRESH SEAFOOD especially FISH!!! That’s all I had throughout my trip. It was slightly harder in Split but everywhere else fresh grilled fish is on every menu and you will love it with potatoes and chard; who knew chard could actually taste good.
Another thing to try is the fish baked under sea salt without any oil or spices, it just comes out absolutely delicious.
Phone & Internet
The internet connection is quite bad in Croatia throughout and for that reason I hardly looked for wifi. I decided not to get the sim card and stuck to roaming to get some better coverage because it automatically switches to strong connection. I would recommend not getting a sim card or relying on internet but if you really must, T mobile is somewhat better than others.
Cash & Cards
Use cash everywhere, only a few places had the option to pay by card and contact-less was almost non existent. Store up plenty of cash people (which is hard because you barely wear any clothes here). Cash machines are easily available in city centres but you will have to look for them if you go out of centre so again cash…
- Sunscreen, sunscreen, sunscreen…
- The beaches are mostly pebbly and will hurt your feet like a b***h but worry not, buy a cheap pair of beach shoes from any stall, these are comfy and are so cheap you can throw them without feeling bad at the end of your trip. Flip flops simply won’t do.
- Get some comfy shoes for Dubrovnik and brace yourself for stairs because you will be climbing a lot of them..