Travel Guide: Croatia
A couple of weeks ago we went on a family trip to Croatia, Croatia is a place which had been on my bucket list for quite some time having known a lot of people who have been and come back with only good things to say about it.
The cobbled streets, vintage looking shops, beautiful doorways, colours of the beaches and the paintwork and architecture of city’s and towns are so beautiful you can get lost wondering for hours, quite content by just looking around you but I just wanted to quickly highlight some of the things I would recommend as it seems from the messages I got from you while I was there, a lot of you are also thinking of taking a trip to the Dalmatian islands soon.
When: Last two weeks of June
Temperature: HOT! - It was pretty muggy, it seemed to be slightly over cast in the mornings and sunny peak afternoon. I was very thankful for the pool ! A local lady told us that it hasn’t always been like this, apparently it used to be hot but breezy and now it is much more of a sticky heat and they have more storms. - GLOBAL WARMING
Where we stayed: This Air Bnb. It was super lovely - however the outside oven was no longer there and there was a rubble pile/ potential building site just in front of the villa which slightly ruined the view BUT everything else was perfect.
White water rafting:
We went on one of the white water rafting trips - we decided to go for the easier option, with less rapids, it was good but I think we all agreed if we were to do it again we would go for the more adventurous option. The trip we did there was more paddling than rapids. Half way through you got to jump off a super high rock into the water which was so fun! Despite feeling super confident and planning a smooth jump, when it was my turn, I stood on the edge and the fear set in, if you imagine a baby bird doing a belly flop. That was my jumping style.
Favourite meal out: Puljiz Resturant Service was brilliant and the food was delicious! it is on the corner in Saint Michaels square - which is a very pretty location in the back streets of Omis
Local Dish: There is a lot of truffle about- oh my gosh how I love truffle. I recommend getting at least one truffle pasta while you’re visiting.
Places near by to visit: We popped down the coast to Brela, it was a little more touristy but nice to visit, plenty of great ice cream and nice beaches- they also had inflatable sea runs.. You know when they have a big bouncy castle thing in the sea- which looked AMAZING and I wanted to go on but was under 14 haha. We ate at: Konoba Feral really delicious food overlooking the harbour - I had the Tuna salad, tuna is another local dish that you will see on the menu in alot of restaurant. This restaurant was where I ate the best tuna of the week. On the drive to Brela from Omis there are loads of places to stop along the way too. Fab looking beach bars and quiet beaches.
If we had more time: I would have walked up to Fortress Starigrad, which is a 14th/15th Century fortress situated in the hills above Omis. Two of our family did this on the first day - they said it was quite a tough walk so make sure you wear good footwear and set off super early (7am ish) to avoid walking in the heat. We also wanted to visit the national park which is home to the dramatic looking waterfalls you see on so many pictures but it was just a little too far from where we were staying.
Boat trip: Speed boat Omis
We wanted to see more of croatia so decided to take a boat trip. We did a lot of research and went with Speed Boat Omis who have a booking stand just on the harbour
Doing this means we got to see more of the Dalmatian coast islands, we went to Vis to see the blue caves, we visited Hvar, the blue lagoon - which also included wine tasting in an old quaint vine yard, and Bol. We also visited the most amazing cove which is on Vis which you swam to from the boat, there was just a tiny beach and a bar which was one of my favourite parts of the day but I can’t remember what the beach is called… very unhelpful I know. If I went back I would do it again but ask if it was possible to skip the blue caves and spend more time in the other places (see why below)
Anyway, I would highly recommend this trip, our skipper was brilliant, we got on with him so well we then went to his bar in split the next day for more wine tasting. (which I have also recommended) it was also just a great way to see more of the country. All of the towns have something different to offer - Hvar was my favourite.
Are the blue caves worth a trip? I think if I knew what it was going to be like I wouldn’t have gone. I’m glad I saw them but just be prepared, it is a 2 hour speed boat ride from Omis, you are in the cave for maybe 3 minutes, it is just one cave and its not particularly big and you can’t get out and swim. It reminded me a bit of Disneyland’s “its a small world” ride? haha. There are hundreds of other tourists all in a very small area all waiting for mini boats to take them around the corner to the cave. It’s very well organised and efficient with a quing system but it just wasn’t quite the adventure of caves I was expecting. I would rather had more time to spend in some of the other places we visited that day.
Do you need a car? I would say yes, there are beautiful stretches of coast line and different towns which I think would be harder to get to with out a car.
Favourite thing: I really loved the trees on the beaches, it made them feel more private. The beaches are long and narrow and really clear - There are also some really gorgeous doorways and buildings which make you say “wow - look at that” every 30 seconds or so.
Least favourite thing: Watch out for the sea urchins! It seemed like a lot of coast near where we were has sea urchins, it was ok, you just had to watch where you put your feet when you got in and out of the water- or just buy those sexy water shoes!
Spit, (30 min drive from Omis)
To eat: Pizzeria Bokamorra - Pizzas were Tom approved which is always a good thing as he is a pizzola at Honest Crust in Manchester and they do amazing cocktails, it was really busy and we hadn’t booked so we sat at the bar to eat and it was amazing to watch the bardenders whip up a storm behind the bar.
To drink:. Palace Judita Heritage Hotel - a gorgeous little court yard just off one of Splits cute little squares - it also looked like a lovely place to say although we didn’t check out the rooms in person, just online after but its in a great location!
Also see another suggestion below.
What to do: Wine tasting at De Vin Split remember the great skipper I told you about? This is his wine bar, the day after the boat trip we decided to pop down to his bar for some wine tasting, It was brilliant! The wines were beautiful and the charcuterie boards were delicious. It was everyone’s favourite night of the holiday.
Here is a link to there instagram
If we had more time: I would have also eaten at Mazzgoon - we didn’t manage to go but have researched and heard a lot of amazing things about it.
Hope that has helped give you a few suggestions of what to do while you are there, it really is just such a beautiful country, I know you will just absolutely love it!