Top 10 most beautiful places in Croatia
Between the magical Adriatic Sea and the Dinaric Mountains, among beautiful waterfalls and a thousand islands stretches the pearl of the Mediterranean basin – Croatia. The Plitvice Lake System, with its charming property of changing the color of water, has created dozens of waterfalls on the territory of the country. A rugged coastline and thousands of unexplored islands await beach lovers.
Croatia is a young country, which dates back to 1991. However, the history of these places is much older. Ruins of ancient cities, mountain villages, beautiful beaches, excellent national cuisine and hospitality of local people will make a trip to Croatia an unforgettable adventure.
Croatia’s best places
The list of places to visit in Croatia abounds with natural beauties, castles, monasteries and ancient Roman structures.
1. Plitvice Lakes National Park
Plitvice Lakes National Park
The Plitvice Lakes are one of the most magical attractions in Croatia. The national park includes ancient karst lakes, an endless number of waterfalls, about two dozens of caves, some of which are behind the waterfalls, rivers and a unique primeval forest. Along the lakes and waterfalls there are many footpaths and bridges from which you can admire the views. The Plitvice lakes are one of the oldest national parks on the European continent. Wolves, brown bears, lynxes, roe deer, bats and hundreds of species of birds and fish still live there.
2. amphitheater of Pula
In the first century BC the city of Pula was a major trading center on the map of the Roman Empire. The construction of the amphitheater only emphasized this status. The amphitheater is well preserved. One reason is that during the Middle Ages knights used the arena for tournaments and duels. White limestone was used to build the amphitheater. The walls are more than 30 meters high, and the maximum capacity of the audience is over 23 thousand people. For a long time the arena was used for gladiatorial fights and the torture of wild animals. Under the arena one can still see the underground tunnels used by gladiators and the rooms where they kept the animals.
3 Island of Korcula
Korcula Island is situated near the Dalmatian coast of Croatia. It is no secret that the main reason for tourists to visit it is the well-preserved medieval old town of Korcula. The narrow paved streets, old Venetian buildings, strong fortress walls, the Princely Palace and Franciscan monastery are some of the places which you should visit on the island. The slopes of the island are covered with pine forests, the coast is a cozy cove, and the village fish restaurants serve the most delicious seafood.
If you have watched Game of Thrones, you will easily recognize several locations in Dubrovnik, which were often shown in the series. The King’s harbor, the garden of the Red Fortress, the Battle of Blackwater – all these locations are located in Dubrovnik. The city walls of the Old Town remember not only the “Game of Thrones” crew, but also the Saracen siege, the rule of the Venetians and the French occupation. There is a walking route along the perimeter of the walls, which has a length of 2 km. The fabulous architecture of the city opens from the fortress towers, where you can also climb to take pictures. The most beautiful building of Dubrovnik is considered to be the Sponza Palace. Walk through the streets of the Old Town, see ancient monasteries and churches, admire the Princely Palace and visit the Cathedral of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary.
Beautiful places in Croatia
There are several beautiful places in Croatia that are worth visiting on vacation in this beautiful and sunny country. No photo or video can capture all the beauty. It must be seen with your own eyes.
5. Krka National Park
Krka National Park
Along the meandering river Krka is the border of the national park, which was established at the end of the 20th century. The national park is known primarily for its beautiful cascades of waterfalls. The largest and most visited among tourists is Skradinski Beech waterfall. In the waters of the lake, formed by streams of water, you can cool off on a hot day. Among other interesting sights, it is worth visiting the Franciscan monastery of Visovac. Its postcard view on an island in the center of Lake Visovac is adorned in numerous photo souvenirs.
6. Hvar (island and town)
Hvar (island and town)
In the Adriatic Sea in the southern part of Croatia is the island of Hvar with its capital of the same name. It is the sunniest region in the country. On the promenade Hvar work until dawn, many bars, playing music and spinning records of famous DJs. Democratic prices and an abundance of booze have made the island any place for fun among students. Meanwhile, the narrow cobblestone streets of the Old Town, can delight connoisseurs of architecture and medieval art. The Dalmatian Renaissance-style St. Stephen’s Cathedral is the jewel of the island.
This is one of the biggest and most picturesque cities in the country. Romans, Venetians, Franks and Habsburgs had a hand in the architectural appearance of Rovinj. The old town is surrounded by a strip of beaches where locals and tourists love to relax. The best landmark in Rovinj is the needle-shaped spire of St. Euphemia Church, which can be seen from everywhere. The numerous museums, churches, chapels, monasteries and palaces tell the story of the city better than any guidebook.
Interesting places in Croatia
Croatia is visited by tourists from all over Europe for its natural attractions, snow-white beaches and medieval architecture.
8. The Island of Mljet
In search of places untouched by civilization, travelers go to the island of Mljet. Much of it is covered by impenetrable forests. The population of Mljet is about a thousand people, who live mainly in the coastal region and are engaged in wine-growing. At the westernmost tip of the island is a national park. Two salt lakes make up its main natural attraction. On the Big Lake the old Benedictine monastery attracts attention. Among the caves that are in abundance on Mljet, travelers visit the one in which, according to legend, Odysseus lived for six years.
The small but cozy town of Motovun is situated on a high hill, at the foot of which flows the river Myrna. Terracotta roofs are interspersed with narrow cobblestone streets. The town is not meant for transport, so the parking lot is at the foot of the hill. The way to the top passes through an ancient stone staircase, which has 1052 steps. You have to be very physically prepared to climb them, but the view from the top is worth the effort. Olive groves and Motovun forest, which runs along the river, complete the village landscape. In the forest grows the most important local delicacy – truffles. Here you can try pizza and pasta with white and black truffles.
10. Diocletian’s Palace
At the foot of the Mosor Mountains in Croatia stands the city of Split, which dates back to Roman times. The Roman Emperor Diocletian chose this place for his residence. Mighty fortress walls, dozens of watchtowers, temples, a mausoleum and imperial chambers appeared in the III century. The southern facade with its colonnade goes directly to the sea bay. There is a beautiful view of the surrounding area. Until today is well preserved imperial mausoleum, the temple of Jupiter, three towers, part of the fortress walls and the building of the palace itself. Materials for construction were flown in from all over the vast empire: from Egypt, Turkey and Italy. Egyptian sphinxes still decorate the streets of the palace complex. Today Diocletian’s palace houses a museum, where you can look at unique exhibits and well-preserved artifacts.
Top 20 most beautiful sights in Croatia
Nestled on the coast of the Adriatic Sea, Croatia is famous not only for its magnificent beaches, comfortable hotels, but also for the sights of different historical eras, as well as unique natural parks. Experienced tourists already know where to rest in Croatia, and we will try to present the most beautiful sights of the country and answer the question what to see in Croatia when traveling around the country.
Josip Jelačić Square
Let’s start our acquaintance with the sights from the main city of the Croats, the capital of the state – Zagreb, namely from the main square, named in honor of the famous Ban, the commander Count Josip Jelačić.
The people of Zagreb call this place Jelacic Square, but lately, the European name Jelacic square has changed. The main city streets intersect on the square, and it is a popular area for walks.
In 1866, a monument to Count Jelačić was erected in the center, while the square itself is surrounded by many architectural monuments. The oldest building is the house erected back in 1827.
One of the main architectural monuments in Zagreb on Kaptol Square, the Cathedral is mentioned even in the historical chronicles of the IX century.
It was consecrated in honor of St. Stephen and St. Vladislav, who were especially revered in these areas. It suffered a lot during the Mongol invasions and during the Ottoman rule it became the main bastion of Christianity.
After a major earthquake in 1800, the towers of the cathedral were rebuilt in the Neo-Gothic style. The interior and sacristy were rebuilt and a triptych by Albert Durer was placed there.
The first thing tourists visiting Split see is the unique masterpiece of Roman architecture, the Diocletian’s Palace, constructed between 295 and 305.
The luxurious residence of the Roman emperor is well preserved, and in 1979 UNESCO included the structure of Antiquity in the list of World Heritage Sites. One of the facades with marble columns overlooked the waterfront, and towers were erected on the perimeter of the palace.
The palace itself occupies an area of 3 hectares. Brick for the construction was taken local, but the marble was brought from Egypt and the island of Marmara.
The church of St. Donatus
On the personal order of bishop Donat Zadar, the stone church was erected on the ruins of the Roman structure in the XI century, and was consecrated in honor of the Holy Trinity.
The religious building received its present name already in the XV century in memory of the legendary bishop. Today it is the only architectural monument in Croatia of pre-Romanesque period.
The city of Zadar is also famous for the fact that the famous Croatian soccer player Luka Modric started his career here, becoming the best player of the World Cup held in Russia.
By the way, you can find the photos of the most beautiful footballers of the world on our site most-beauty.ru.
The cozy town of Pula with its good-natured and hospitable inhabitants is situated on the west coast, and it is famous for the preserved ancient amphitheater built in the 1st century B.C.
The huge building accommodating up to 20,000 spectators remained in its original form until our times. In addition to the theatrical performances the large-scale gladiatorial fights were held there.
The city authorities are constantly carrying out restoration works to keep the historical monument in good condition, and the biggest restoration was conducted at the end of the 19th century.
The amazing, and perhaps the most beautiful place in the south of Europe, has been formed over the centuries due to limestone deposits deposited by the Koran River.
Natural dams blocked the way for water, and magnificent lakes were formed, with turquoise water, surrounded by majestic forests. There are also waterfalls, and mazes of caves have formed in the sandstone strata.
On the territory is forbidden to make fires, conduct picnics, but to take away from here beautiful pictures and a lot of positive emotions, you are guaranteed.
You can learn about other beautiful lakes in the world by following this link.
St. Euphrasius Basilica
The early Christian complex in the town of Poreč in Istria was established in the 6th century and today is a unique monument of Christian architecture.
In addition to the basilica, the architectural ensemble includes a sacristy, a bishop’s residence and a bell tower. It is one of the oldest Christian monuments and the first church was built in honor of St. Maurus, who is the patron saint of Poreč.
There is a colonnade on the facade and inside the church is decorated with frescoes and amazing mosaics.
This unusual architectural construction, designed by the architect Nikola Bashic, is a unique and unrepeatable sight in Zadar.
A system of pipes built under the city embankment has an outlet on the sidewalk, and the movement of sea water, pushing the air out, creates unusual sounds.
Thousands of tourists come to Zagreb to listen to this kind of natural music, without a human performer. And those who are accustomed to traditional music, go to a concert of “2Cellos” – the famous duo of Croatian cellists.
Krka National Park
In the middle of Dalmatia stretches wonderful national park, where grow rare plants and trees, and in the woods you can find rare species of singing birds.
People come here to look at the numerous waterfalls, as well as to enjoy the silence and crystal clear air. The park itself is nestled in the river valley of the Krka River, between the peaks of the Croatian mountains Sibenik and Knin.
On the territory you can visit the Franciscan monastery, as well as examine the exhibits of the ethnographic museum and listen to the bell ringing of the Serbian Orthodox monastery.
The monumental building, built in the Lower Town of the capital in 1901, belonged to the first commercial bank. The author of the unique project was the architect Josip Vankash.
The building is covered with an octagonal dome assembled of glass, which makes the interior space three-dimensional. The sun’s rays penetrating through the colorful stained-glass windows leave multicolored reflections on the walls.
Due to the shape of the dome, the building was given such an original and beautiful name. The floors of the Octagon are lined with two-color tiles, and at their intersection there is an ornament in the form of a meander.
Museum of Stone
In the town Pucišća, nestled in a small harbour on the island of Brač, one can visit the unique Museum of Stone.
In ancient times, rare white stone was extracted here for the construction of churches and palaces all over Europe, that is why the town is often called “White stone Pucishta”.
The museum rooms tell about the history of mining the brocade stone, and unique exhibits presenting the tools and household items of the stonecutters are collected as well. You can buy amazing souvenirs made of white stone.
The Riviera of Makarska
On the map of the sights of Croatia this 60-kilometer long stretch of coast stands apart, as this is where the best beaches of the country are spread, and 5-star hotels will surprise you with their comfort and coziness.
Pebble beaches alternate with sand ones and there is a footpath along the coast which is probably the main attraction of the Riviera.
All the beaches are clean and the water is warm and gentle. So, coming to the Riviera of Makarska, the question of where to rest in Croatia, no longer arises.
As the legend goes, when the giants built urban settlements in the valley of the Mirna River, they were left with a few stones, of which they built the city of Hum.
The city-fortress, with a population of 17 people, is listed in the Guinness Book of Records as the smallest city on the planet. By the way, all 17 residents of the town are relatives. Despite its small size, it has all the benefits of civilization.
The town itself is a big, or rather small, attraction, but it is worth visiting the chapel of the XVI century, as well as to examine the remains of the medieval fortress walls. And here you can taste the famous Croatian wine from the locals.
When visiting the most beautiful places of the country in the south of Europe, one cannot ignore the amazing cave on the slope of Mosor Mountain. It is rightly called the most colorful cave in the country, and it was discovered in 1903.
Tour guides are specially trained, so tourists are guaranteed a quality tour, during which you can not only observe the beauty of the cave, but also to learn a lot of new things from the geology of the region.
The cave amazes majestic vaults, unique crystal-like growths at the walls, as well as intricately shaped stones, located inside the mountain formation.
A sandy spit stretching into the sea from the south side of the island of Brac attracts tourists with incredibly clear sea and golden beach sand.
The beach of Golden Horn stretches on both sides of the spit, and stretches 634 meters, although the length varies depending on the tides and winds. A pine grove adjoins the beach, and lovers of antiquity can see the ruins of a Roman villa.
The water in the sea is very clear because of the strong current in the channel Hvar. The western part of the spit is fancied by the nature lovers who like to swim and sunbathe naked.
The island of Krk is famous not only for its luxurious resorts but also for its natural beauty spots, one of which is the Biserujka cave.
It is the largest karst cave on the Croatian island, and it was discovered in 1834. The numerous stalactites and stalagmites give it a mysterious look, and if the legend is to be believed, it was used by the Mediterranean pirates to hide their treasures.
Especially impressive are the columns that rest against the vaults of the cave. The total length of the passages is 110 meters, and excursions through the labyrinths of the mountain have been taking place since 1950.
A beautiful island in the Kvarner Bay, which is one of the Croatian islands, has become a favorite destination of Europeans. The Germans especially like to spend their vacations here, as they consider it the sunniest place in all Europe. Beautiful Germans love to enjoy the summer sun and the natural sights here.
There are no large cities, and the special climate and sea water will help to restore forces, both spiritual and physical. The island is famous for its gorgeous beaches and cozy restaurants.
In addition, you can rent a boat and during a boat ride explore the expanse of the sea and the beauty of the island from the sea.
Get acquainted with the amazing national architecture in the town of Rovinj, which is rightfully considered a fairy-tale landmark of Croatia.
Roofs of the houses sparkle with red tiles, and above all this splendor towers the building of the City Hall. Every year a festival of photographers takes place here, which attracts photographers from all over the world.
The writer Jules Verne, fascinated by the beauty of the city and the sea coast, has repeatedly mentioned Rovinj in his immortal works.
The Princely Palace
The Dubrovnik Ducal Palace, built in the Gothic style, attracts attention of the lovers of history and lovers of fine architectural forms.
The palace started to be built in the 15th century, and in time during the reconstruction elements of the Renaissance period were added to its interior. The main facade is framed by two majestic towers, well preserved to this day.
The monarch spent most of his life in the palace and during the Middle Ages, the city gates were locked at night and the key was kept in one of the rooms of the palace.
Experience the flavor of Croatia and the atmosphere of the people at the Dolac Market, functioning in the Croatian capital.
The first rows of shops and vendors appeared there in the early 30s of the last century, and today it is the largest market in the country, where you can buy any commodity or food. Surprisingly, the market area is clean, and most of the products sold at the market are grown by the vendors themselves.
Tourists rush here to buy seafood and taste the national cuisine. In the center of the market is a bronze monument to a saleswoman with a basket on her shoulder.
Let’s sum up
Here we have learned what Croatia is famous for, and what are the pros and cons of vacationing in this European country.
Photos and descriptions of attractions in Croatia will not convey the beauty and uniqueness, so plan a visit to this country to see historical monuments, picturesque nature and swim in the warm waters of the Adriatic Sea.