Updated: Dec 25, 2021
I recently had the opportunity to do a month long Euro Trip with my best friend this summer and wanted to share my itinerary for one of the most beautiful countries I visited! Croatia is usually not on many peoples list, but let me tell you; you should definitely add it! Croatia is one of the most beautiful and FUN countries I have gone too in quite awhile and my friend and I will definitely be going back soon.
Picture taken in Dubrovnik, Croatia
Cities included in this article
Day 1: Fly into Zagreb, the capital city of Croatia
For the beginning of my travels, I decided to check out the capital city of Croatia. I flew into Franjo Tudman Airport which is a thirty to forty minute drive to the city center. In all honesty, there wasn't a whole lot of sights to see in Zagreb itself so if you're limited on time I would recommend skipping Zagreb and going straight to Split. If you do visit Zagreb, there are a couple locations near by that are definitely worth a visit which I will talk about more down below!
Where I stayed :
I stayed at Hostel Bureau in Zagreb city center. I honestly loved this hostel since it was so close to the main square - just a five minute walk. The photo to the left is the type of streets you would see in the main square! We stayed in a mixed dorm which was only around 20 Euros a night and the people we met were very nice. We got there before check in, and thankfully they had a lounge downstairs with large couches (and a pool table) that we took a nap on hahaha.
If you do choose to add Zagreb to your itinerary, I would only spend around two days there, maybe three if you want to explore a little more. If you like to get things done and wake up early, then two days should be enough for you to get to explore all the right places:)
- As soon as we checked into our hostel, we left our things and went exploring! We were able to see most of the city center in that day. The main square was pretty small but definitely the highlight of our trip to Zagreb due to the beautiful streets and flower markets.
Top sights in Zagreb
The top sights are actually not exactly in Zagreb, but are close by. You will need to buy a bus ticket to each but here in Croatia the bus tickets are not expensive.
Salona, Croatia (Dubrovnik)
These next few sights are in Slovenia which are 100% worth seeing. I would recommend adding Slovenia and staying there for two nights, but timing wise, it's so close to Zagreb that you could definitely just plan a day trip to one of these locations!
Where to eat in Zagreb :
- Otto & Frank
These were our top two restaurants in the city center, both had amazing breakfast as well as a healthy lunch.
To get from Zagreb to Split, the cheapest way would be via bus which is around five hours and only about eleven euros! I usually book these buses with Omio.com or a company called Flixbus. These two offer the cheapest rates for transportation and the times I took them they were on time; but I have heard other things!
Day 3: Split
Where to stayed :
I stayed a little far from the old town my first time in Croatia and it's something I wouldn't recommend. Even though every part of Split is magnificent, I would recommend a couple hostels in / near the old town such as Old Town Hostel which is 23$ a night, Gravitas Hostel 19$ and Downtown Hostel 19$. These picks are perfect and right in the old town. The second time I was in Split, I was able to stay in a hotel name Hotel Slavija in the old town and it was a great experience
I only spent two days in Split but it was enough time to explore most parts of the city! If you have more time I recommend staying in Split for longer, I fell in love with the Old Town!
-Diocletian's Palace (pictured above
-Old Town Hall
-Saint Domnius Bell Tower
From Split, it is very easy to take a ferry to the most beautiful islands in Croatia! In my itinerary I included one which you will read about but others include the islands of Bol, Vis, Brac, Korcula and many more!
Day 4-6: Hvar
Picture taken at the main harbor in Hvar
I know above I put three days in Hvar, but my friend and I actually spent four days here! We loved it so much we decided to stay for a little longer and cancel a couple days from a different country on our trip. If you like to party, I would recommend staying here for the same amount of time I did. The island is pretty small, but it is so beautiful with other small islands surrounding it which are easy to get too by taxi boat.
Where to stayed :
I stayed at Hostel Marinero which I HIGHLY recommend! Perfect location, right in the center of everything! Literally next to Kiva bar, but I honestly couldn't hear much of the noise! The lady who checked us in was so sweet and we even went out with her one of the nights! Great stay.
-Hvar is small which means you can get everywhere on foot! Its so beautiful that every single street is a photo op, I'm not sure of the exact locations for some, but I can tell you where some are near.
-Hvar Harbor (East and West)
-The Main Square
-Near Hula Hula beach club
-Near Kiva Bar
-Jerolim, Palmizana, Otok Islands
Where to party in Hvar:
-Carpe Diem Beach (100/10, INSANE!)
-Hula Hula Beach Club (Happens during the day and it so fun 10/10)
-Kiva Bar (so crowded but a bar street where everyone goes!)
-Carpe Diem Bar (Its ok)
We started at Hula Hula around 5.pm. and partied there until sunset! It was very fun but gets crowded so it would be best to get there early. The age range here was around 21-30, a little bit mid ranged compared to Carpe Diem. After Hula Hula we would eat and then go to the bars!
-The street that Kiva Bar is located has many other fun bars that hundreds of people show up too and is great for meeting people and a good night out. We met a ton of friends near there and everyone here are so nice and outgoing!
-After the bars we then head to Carpe Diem! You go to the harbor next to Carpe Diem and that is where you start to line up to go to Carpe Diem. Carpe Diem is actually located on a separate island and so they bring free taxi boats to take everyone there. Once you're on the boat, it takes around ten minutes to reach the island! It was honestly like something out of a movie when we arrived, I have no words to explain but man, if you like to party or are looking for a night out THIS IS IT.
Picture taken near Hula Hula
You can take a ferry from Split or Hvar to Dubrovnik. It's around a 3 hour ferry ride from each. The ferry price is around 20 - 50 Euros.
Day 7-8: Dubrovnik
Dubrovnik was honestly unreal! You may know this town especially if you're a Game Of Thrones fan; like my best friend is. Dubrovnik brings in a lot of tourism due to the fact that the HBO show was filmed in this town, and they host many GOT tours! We actually took a GOT and history tour one of the days we were there and it was very interesting. I actually never watched the show (I'm so late, I know!!) but seeing where all the scenes were filmed was amazing. While walking through Dubronik I knew exactly why they picked this place, it was just incredible; such a beautiful medieval town.
Where to stayed : I stayed at Old Town Hostel which had the most amazing location and was walkable to everything. It was only 20 Euros a night for a mixed room. The decor was also beautiful.
-St. Lawrence Fort
-The City Walls (costs 30E)
-Rectors Palace and Square
-Jesuit Steps (Where the walk of Shame was filmed)
-Go kayaking at sunset
-GOT or History tour or both
Travel Tips for Croatia
In Zagreb and areas nearby, things are pretty cheap! It's well priced in food, drinks, etc. once you get to Split, Hvar and Dubrovnik that's where things get expensive. Not as expensive as other countries I have visited but Hvar and Dubrovnik were around 25 Euros for a meal each.
- Everything is priced in Kuna which is difficult to convert on the spot so you never know how much you're actually spending.
Transportation wise, things are relatively cheap no matter where you are! Except Hvar. Buses and trains are an efficient and cheap way of getting around in Croatia and they do come late sometimes but are usually good from what I have experienced.
The weather in Croatia does get a little rainy, so make sure to bring an umbrella! Usually in summer it's HOT and pretty dry but this year was a little different. We got lucky, but it did rain hard a couple of the days that I was in Croatia... mainly in Hvar and Dubrovnik. We didn't bring an umbrella and had to run in the rain so many times! It poured and thundered in Hvar and Dubrovnik so beware of that... but it would usually go away in minutes.
People always were asking me, "Why are you going to Croatia?" and when I would show them photos they would say, "Woah! That's really Croatia?" and act so surprised! Many people don't realize the true beauty of Croatia and what it has in store. The beaches are clean and the water is so clear that you can see miles down. The streets and buildings contain so much history and are so beautifully built. I would 100% include Croatia in your Europe itinerary since it has so much beauty to see and theres so much to do. The people in Croatia were all so welcoming and kindhearted, it really was so great being there.