Travel in Croatia: the island and city of Krk, how to get there and what to see

Krk – colorful island and national park in Croatia

The island of Krk is the heart of Croatia. It has beaches, beautiful settlements and picturesque nature. Photos of the island of Krk can often be seen on advertising banners and all kinds of travel guides – it is considered an important center of tourism in Croatia.

Island Krk

General information

Map of island Krk

Krk is the largest island in the Adriatic Sea, located near the Dalmatian coast (its area is 406 km²). Its population is about 17,000 people.

The island of Krk has a rich history: the first references to it date back to the 1st century BC (the sea battle of Julius Caesar and Pompey). Then was the arrival of the Slavs in the 6th century, the formation of the Venetian Republic in the 18th century and its collapse, then the occupation by the Italians and 40 years later the island became part of the KKCS. Then was formed the Kingdom of Yugoslavia, and in 1990, like many states, Croatia (and Krk in particular) has become independent.

Today, the island is very popular with tourists – there are several resorts and historical and cultural values.

Settlements on the island of Krk

On the island of Krk in Croatia there are small villages and towns. The largest of them are: Krk, Baska, Omisalj, Punat, Vrbnik, Malinska. Each of these settlements is worthy of tourists’ attention, because all of these places have both natural and architectural attractions.

Vrbnik is a town situated on the cliffs of the island of Krk. It is not only one of the largest, but also one of the most popular resorts on the island. There is a huge number of architectural and historical monuments: the church of John the Baptist (patron of Vrbnik), the chapel of St. Anthony of Padua, the chapel of St. Martin, the Gothic chapel of St. Rosary and the old cemetery. But the most interesting fact is that in this town was born Blaž Baromić, the founder of the first printing house in Croatia. A street is named in his honor, and there is a museum as well.

City of Vrbnik

It is interesting for lovers of alcoholic beverages as well because every year a wine festival is held there. During the week, winemakers from all over Europe come here and present their products. There are also special wine exhibitions and lectures.

Krk is the largest city on the island, situated on the southwest coast. It is one of the oldest settlements on the Adriatic Sea, the first records of which date back to the period of the Roman Empire.

Cathedral of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary in Krk

Cathedral of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

There are some architectural sights in Krk. First is the Cathedral of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary, built in the 12th century on an even older building, an early Christian basilica from the V-VI centuries. Secondly, is the Roman Forum – a huge square, on which later appeared the town hall and a popular tourist ancient well. And finally, the third is the huge city walls, built to protect the old city from enemies.

It is also worth visiting the museum of religious art and the Chapel of St. Donatus, built back in the XII century.

Baska is a small village in Croatia, situated on the shore of a large bay. It is more of a resort for beach holidays rather than sightseeing tourism.

The Town of Baska

There are many beaches here: Nikolina, Ikovac, Osijeka, as well as Wild (or Dog). In the village there are ideal conditions for recreation – the water is clean, the wind is very rare, near some beaches there is a pine forest.

It is worth mentioning a few attractions: the church of St. Nicholas of the XIX century, the statue of St. Nicholas (the saint – the patron saint of Krk) and the central promenade of the resort. Not far from the Baška spa is another interesting place – the cave Biseruika. According to myth, in this place pirates hid treasure. Today it is a very famous tourist site: travelers can visit several caves and admire the stalactites.

View of Stara Baska

Stara Baska is a classic old Croatian town by the sea. It is a great place for a family vacation: there are many beaches, a forest, a park, as well as the famous mountain. Getting to the resort is not easy – you can either come here by car from the town of Punat, or come on foot along the tourist path, which begins at the village of Batomal.

In Stara Baska there are several unnamed beaches, the largest and most famous of them is Pebble Beach. The water here is very clean and there are almost no people. The only drawback – sometimes you can meet sea urchins.

Malinska – a small cozy town on the north-west of the island. It is known primarily for its picturesque parks and clean beaches. There are also interesting historical sites: the Church of St. Appolinarium, the Church of Mary Magdalene and the convent of the early 16th century.

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Beach Haludovo

In Malinska there are many holidays and festivals. For example, on July 23, there is celebrated the Day of Saint Appolinarium – the patron saint of Malinska. There are also organized such festivals as Malinska night (at the end of July) and Malinska cultural summer.

Malinska is worth to visit the resort of beach lovers: it has both pebble and sandy beaches. The latter are very few in Croatia. Beaches are unnamed, but it is not difficult to find them.

And where best to go in Croatia for a beach vacation, a comparison of resorts, see this page.

How to get to the island

The island of Krk in Croatia is a popular tourist destination, so getting to this place is not so difficult. Firstly, there are good maritime links with neighboring islands, and secondly, on Krk there is an airport.

The nearest airport is located 27 km from Krk in the port city of Rijeka (it accepts both international and domestic flights). From the airport you can get to the city by bus (travel time is about 30 minutes).

Bus Station in Pula

Bus station in Pula

However, if you are flying from Russia or CIS countries, you should choose a less comfortable route and land at the airport of Pula (about 130 km to Krk). To get to Krk you can also take a bus.

Bus leaves three times a day from the bus station in Pula. Approximate travel time is 4 hours. The fare is 158 kuna. View the current timetable and buy tickets on www.autotrans.hr.

More information about Pula you can find here.

You can also take a ferry from Pula to the island on the route Crikvenica – Silo. However, first you need to go to the port town Crikvenica from Pula. The fare is 8 kuna. Then you need to take a ferry. The travel time is 4 hours. The ticket price is 140 kuna.

National Park Krka

Krka National Park is the pride of Croatia. It is not located on the island of the same name, as you might think, but in the southern part of the country, not far from Split. This place is famous for its picturesque nature: waterfalls, green hills and forests. The Krka National Park is not inferior in beauty to the famous Plitvice Lakes; tourists from all over Europe come here too.

Map of Krk National Park

Krka National Park in Croatia is located in the valley of the Krka River, near the green resort of Sibenik and the town of Knin. The park covers an area of 109 km².

The protected area of the park is home to over 860 species of animals and 18 species of fish. Krka National Park in Croatia is also famous for its feathered birds: every autumn and spring here you can see the migration of birds.

Skrada Beech Waterfall

Skrada Beech

As for the sights, it is, first of all, 7 picturesque waterfalls. The biggest of them is Skradinsky Beech that is 46 meters high. Near it you can also find an ethnographic museum – there are windmills, working on the energy of the waterfall.

In the national park there are also architectural sights – Franciscan monastery Visovac and Serbian Orthodox monastery Krka. These churches in Croatia were built in the XIV century, and then destroyed many times, but were rebuilt again.

Franciscan Monastery of Visovac

Visovac Monastery

  • September-October and April-June: 110 kuna for adults, 80 kuna for children (the price includes a visit to the park and a boat trip).
  • November-March – adults HRK 30, children HRK 20, children under 7 years old free of charge.
  • July-August – full ticket HRK 200, children over 7 years old HRK 120.

Opening hours (main entrance to the waterfalls Lozovac and Skradinski Beech):

  • November-February from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m,
  • March and the second half of October – from 9.00 to 17.00,
  • April and the first half of October – from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m,
  • May and September – from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m,
  • July through August – 8 a.m. to 8 p.m.
  1. You can reach Krk from Split on the free road along the sea (look for the brown signs that say KRKA Park along the road). The distance between sites is about 85 km, which on average can be covered in 1 hour and 20 minutes.
  2. The second option is to take a bus from Split to Sibenik, and then change to a bus to Lozovac (stop Šibenik – Autobusni kolodvor in the center of town).

The park’s official website: https://www.np-krka.hr/en/.

The prices on the page are for October 2021.

The island of Krk is a great place in Croatia, both for beach and sightseeing tourism.

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Video: what you can see in Krk National Park in Croatia, useful travel tips. See it for sure!

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Only Krk National Park has nothing to do with the island. Do not mislead people!

Park Krk has nothing to do with the island of Krk, shame guys write such nonsense and even on google maps do not check, let your copywriter with God, let the school does not miss, maybe that something will learn …

Hello, Alex! There is a way to report an error in a polite manner. But you chose to be a boor.

KRC ISLAND.

The island of Krk is the heart of Croatia. There are beaches, beautiful towns and villages, picturesque nature and smiling people. Pictures of Krk island can often be seen on advertising banners and in all sorts of travel guides – it is considered one of the important centers of tourism in Croatia.

Krk is the largest island in the Adriatic Sea, located near the Dalmatian coast (its area is 406 km²). Its population is about 17,000 people.

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island of Krk

Island of Krk: very clean and calm sea and a lot of greenery

In fact, the island of Krk and the island of Cres are absolutely identical in size and even today everybody is arguing which island is bigger. Read more about it and Cres island in the article at the link.

The island of Krk

The island of Krk has a rich history: the first mentions of it date back to the 1st century BC (Julius Caesar and Pompey battle at sea). Then was the settlement of the territory by the Slavs in the 6th century, the establishment of the Venetian Republic in the 18th century and its collapse, then the occupation by the Italians and 40 years later the island became part of the KKHS. Then was formed the Kingdom of Yugoslavia, and in 1990, like many states, Croatia (and Krk in particular) has become independent.

Today, the island is very popular with tourists, there are several resorts and historical and cultural values.

Facts about the island of Krk

  • It is the most northern island of Croatia
  • The island of Krk is vying with Cres for the title of the largest island in Croatia. According to the official statistics, they are both exactly the same size.
  • This is one of the few islands in the country, connected to the mainland by a bridge.
  • The island has its own international airport.

Since today the airport traffic is extremely low and the number of flights is small, so 99% of travelers who visit the island of Krk arrive at the airports of the mainland. It is convenient to get to the island from the airports of Pula or Zagreb.

Bridge on Krk in croatia

Bridge to the island of Krk (one of the few islands of Croatia connected to the mainland by a bridge). There is a toll to travel over the bridge!

The vast majority of vacationers come here for a week. This is enough to spend 3-4 days on the beach, and 2-3 days to get to know the island, with its natural beauty, unique cities and an amazing cuisine.

I recommend you to choose one of the following towns, which are at the same time the largest settlements on the island:

  • Krk – 6200 people
  • Omisalj – 3000 people
  • Baska – 1500 people
  • Punat – 1000 people
  • Malinska – 950 people
  • Vrbnik – 1200 people

As you can see, it’s hard to call it a city, it’s more like a village with a very quiet, peaceful atmosphere, disposes to a relaxing holiday. But at the same time here is all the necessary infrastructure and attractions, a must-see.

Island of Krk sights

The most convenient way to travel around the island is by car. Yes, there are regular bus routes on the island, but on public transport is impossible to get to many unique beaches and bays of the island. And renting a car in Croatia is probably the most pleasant and affordable process in all of Europe.

About personal experience of renting a car in Croatia, as well as a lot of tips and tricks, read at the link in a separate article.

Krk has a size of 40 by 15 km, which means that no matter what part of the island you are on, you can reach the opposite side within half an hour. This peculiarity of the island makes sightseeing more convenient and you spend less time on transfers and travel. Even if you miss something today, you can always come back the next day.

Krk Bridge

As already written above, for the vast majority of vacationers acquaintance with the island begins with the bridge of Krk, which connects the island to the mainland. Yes, there is an international airport and ferry service to mainland Croatia, but the main tourist flow goes through the bridge.

Bridge Krk is a 1450-meter concrete structure. This 67 meters high arch bridge is the miracle of human engineering and one of the symbols of the region. It is recognizable, the locals are proud of it, and the galleries of photos of the island of Krk, the city of Krk and even of apartments and hotels necessarily add one of the views of the bridge.

Krk bridge in croatia

Bridge from the mainland to the island of Krk

Traveling across the bridge is paid, with payment points in front of the bridge, it is impossible to pass by. The fare is 39 CZK for a passenger car. The important feature is that the toll on the bridge is only for the island. You can leave the island for free, and in the opposite direction there is no charge for driving on the bridge.

Important to know:

No stops are allowed on the bridge itself, but immediately after the bridge (if you’re going to the island), there’s a lookout point where I recommend stopping to enjoy the gorgeous views of the bay and the sea and take cool photos for your social media.

Keep in mind that there won’t be a lookout on the way back, so don’t miss this opportunity.

As of 2022:

The bridge is free to travel both ways, but the toll booths have remained as is. I can’t tell you what the cancellation of tolls is related to. I will update as I find out.

The next place of interest after the bridge is literally within walking distance, 4 km along the highway – a small town Omisalj.

Omisalj

Omisalj is one of the places where a holiday can be really memorable. It is a quiet and very well-kept town, situated on a 97-meter elevation, the central part of which is a labyrinth of narrow streets and dead ends.

The oldest part of Omišalj attracts visitors with its architecture – old houses with red roofs and ancient churches.

The streets of the town lead to a square with a 17th century Venetian Loggia, the Church of St. Helena with copies of Glagolitic inscriptions, the 13th century Romanesque Church of St. Mary with a dome, bell tower, 16th century choir and a 15th century triptych by Iacobello del Fiore.

On the edge of the town, facing the bay, is the park of Dubec. It is home to pine trees and shrubs planted before World War II. The park was laid out in 1925. Dubec features paths, a total length of about two kilometers, forming terraces at different levels. They are connected by stairs, some of which reach three hundred meters. The park offers magnificent views of the sea.

Omisalj on the island of Krk

One of the coves on the outskirts of Omisalj

On the northern tip of the island on the outskirts of Omišalj is the Vošćice lighthouse, which was built in 1875. It is a building of a total area of 140 square meters, and has a warehouse and a storage room for boats and a pier. The lighthouse gets its energy from a solar module. Now it is fully automated and remotely controlled.

Near Omisalj, just two kilometers away, in the town of Mirine, are the ruins of Fulfinum, an ancient Roman city that was built in the first century AD. Here you can also see the remains of a Christian basilica dating from the 5th century.

Omisalj, founded in the 3rd century, is one of the oldest settlements on the island of Krk, and in the past it was the most important center of literacy and writing. In the 15th century here was built by the Frankopan family – the Princes of the island of Krk – a castle, one of the four island castles of this family.

Omisalj view of the city

View of the old town of Omisalj

At 5 kilometers from Omisalj there is a unique karst cave.

Biserójka Cave

Biserujka cave, also known as Viteziseva, the largest karst cave on the island of Krk, was discovered in the first half of the 19th century – in 1834. During the tourist season the cave is very popular among Croatian nature lovers.

Bisejruka Cave

Cave with stalactites and stalagmites on the island of Krk

The underground cave spaces open to tourists include the so-called “Mouth” – the entrance to the Biseruika, the “Balcony”, the “Mine”, the Great Hall, the “North Channel”, the Arched Hall and the Cypress Hall. The underground space is rich with a variety of stalactites, bizarre stalagmites, lime drifts, and impressive views of non-manmade statues that nature has created over millions of years. The lowest point of Biseruyka is 13 meters below the ground level.

It is important to remember: even in the heat of the cave is quite cool, take with you at least a jacket.

Biseruyka cave’s antiquity is evidenced by bone fragments of the cave bear, which were found during archaeological excavations. There is a legend which states that in the past pirates and robbers hid treasures in the cave, “biser” in Croatian means “pearls”, from which the name Biserujka was born.

Although the surroundings of Biserujka are mostly barren and rocky, they have several features. You can explore them if you walk along the “scientific trail”, organized for educational purposes. Special information panels are installed here. During the walk along the mountain path you can explore the landscapes surrounded by stone walls near the village of Rudyne, pastures overgrown with juniper bushes, the Slivanska Bay with fertile soil terraces, romantic ruins and the pier of the village of Rudyne.

The cost of a visit for an adult is 35 Kuna, for children 20. The cave has one drawback: although it is the largest karst cave on the island, but still its length, open to tourists 150 meters from the force and the entire tour takes 15-25 minutes. But its small size is leveled by the chic interior.

Malinska – City of the Sun

Malinska is a small tourist town on the shore of a beautiful bay in the northwestern part of the island of Krk. It is situated 10 km from Omisalj. It is a quiet and peaceful area, completely sheltered from the wind. That is why the city is often called the City of the Sun, it is always windless, warm and sunny.

In the 18th century, the city built a port, it was a turning point for the development of the city. In 1866, the first tourist steamship moored in the port of the city. It was the first appearance of the passenger steamship on the island, it sailed from Rijeka to Trieste. But the mass arrival of guests began only after 1880.

Malinska on the island of Krk

View of the town of Malinska and the bay

After discovering and appreciating the local natural beauty, it was decided that there are excellent conditions for medical tourism. Thanks to this, in 1885, Prince Rudolf, heir to the Austrian throne, visited Malinske.

His visit was a splendid advertisement for the future spa town, so much so that at the beginning of the 20th century the spa was visited by many royal families. The Viennese press called Malinska the pearl among the islands of the Kvarner Bay. Today tourism in Malinska continues the traditions of the early 20th century.

Antiquity lovers can visit the tower of St. Appolinarium church, built in 1618, as well as the ruins of the Benedictine church and the convent of the 11th-12th centuries. Not far from the small village of Porat, located next door, there is the church of St. Mary Magdalene and the Franciscan convent of the early 16th century – a Gothic building, rebuilt two hundred years later in Baroque style.

Malinska beaches

One of the beaches of Malinska within the city

In summer many tourists and participants gather in Malinsko holidays which are regularly held in Malinsko – the day of Saint Appolinariy (the holiday of the patron of the city, celebrated on July 23), Malinsko night in late July, the Malinsko cultural summer (June 15 – September 15) and the Kvarner regatta in September.

Lovers of relaxation by the sea are attracted by numerous sandy and pebbly beaches, and small hidden coves for those who do not like the crowds.

Being in Malinske, you can go to other nearby cities, such as the ancient Krk, which is only thirteen kilometers.

Krk – the capital and center of the island

Krk, like all other cities in Croatia has an old town with centuries of history. The city itself is built up and developed around the old buildings, which is typical not only for Croatia, but for the whole of Europe.

The old town of Krka is the cultural and historical center of the island. The old town is magnificent and unique. Everything here is permeated with the spirit of history, because Krk is one of the oldest cities on the Adriatic.

The very center of the town is decorated with the Old square. It is surrounded by steep hills, on whose slopes were built the houses of the local nobility. People inhabited this place during the Roman Empire, then there was a town Curicum. That is where the modern name of the city comes from.

sights on the island of Krk

The view of the old town of Krk is a bomb

There are several sights in the town: the old Roman forum, the town hall and a beautiful stone well were built in its place in the Middle Ages.

Another square is Camplin. Its name comes from the Latin word “campus”, meaning “field”. In Roman times there was a polygon, located near the thermal spas. The remains of the colonnade of the temple on the square show that in ancient times a very imposing building stood here.

The fortified city walls that surround the city on all sides and which remain today, were built between the Illyrian period and the decline of the Venetian Republic. The last reconstruction of the walls took place at the end of the 15th century. The oldest part of the fortifications is the 12th century Kuplin Tower.

The most important architectural landmark of Krk is Frankopane Castle. Built to defend the city some nine hundred years ago by the noble Frankopan family, the castle today has been converted into an exhibition grounds, but has partially retained its original appearance. Currently, the building can be viewed during a walk along the castle walls and the three towers.

The oldest part of it is the Square Tower. It is assumed that it was intended for the cathedral’s bell tower, but in addition to the church bells, an alarm bell rang from this tower if the city was in danger.

The inscription above the gate reads: “This is the work of the entire congregation in the summer of 1191”. Frescoes found in the layers of the walls of the Square Tower indicate that it was used for religious ceremonies or other celebrations, and later the tower served as a courtroom.

The castle walls were adapted for patrols, loopholes were covered with special shields to protect archers. In the inner part of the castle there was enough space to shelter warriors and townspeople in case of danger behind the walls. There was a reservoir to store drinking water, and there were two outlets to the south and west of the fortress for the supply of provisions.

Among the religious sites of Krk, the Cathedral, the construction of which began in the 12th century, is especially noteworthy. Not far from it there is the basilica of St. Quirin and there is also the Museum of Religious Art. The Church of St. Krshevan, a particularly valuable architectural monument, dates back to the 11th-12th centuries.

city view Krk

Here is another beautiful view of the center of old Krk

Franciscans first appeared in Krk in 1277. At first, their monastery was part of the northern wall of the city. The east wing was added in 1910 to house a small seminary. A painting of the Renaissance artist Vittore Carpaccia, depicting the Mother of God with the Child, is kept here.

Just a few kilometers from the capital of the island of Krk with the same name, there is another unique place of interest: the island of Koslun.

Košljun Island and Franciscan Monastery

island of Košljun

Koslun island from a drone

Island of Koslun is located 3 kilometers from Krk and 200 meters from Punat village.

It is one of the most interesting places on the island of Krk (Krk). The monastery is located on a tiny island Košljun (Kosljun) in the heart of the Bay of Punat.

The island is actually perfectly round, which can be seen on satellite images, and this gives an additional mystical areal to this truly wonderful place.

island of Košljun

Monastery on the island of Koslun

The first monks settled on the island in 1447 with the blessing of the Princes of Frankopan. Next to the small jetty, at the entrance to the monastery, you are greeted by an unusual sculpture of a monk who tamed a wolf, which was installed in memory of an ancient legend.

To get to the island Koslun you can take numerous tourist boats, which are moored on the main promenade of Punat for literally 20 Kuna.

This is not all the sights of the island of Krk, be sure to visit the beautiful coastal towns Baška, Vrbnik and Kornjić. And also don’t forget to visit the town of Dobrinj, which is in the center of the island.

In conclusion: a holiday on the island of Krk will be full of tranquility, absence of crowds of tourists, beautiful nature and clear sea.

Have an unforgettable experience!

Found a mistake – write in the comments.

Important information: below are some resources that will help you organize your holiday in Croatia:

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