If you are pressed for time, coming from a very far area, or simply detest the idea of spending a significant amount of time in a car, flying to Croatia can always be an alternative to get you to the starting point of your sailing adventure. To your good fortune, Croatia’s coast is home to a number of airports; as a result, you won’t have to make the trip to Zagreb, where the nation’s busiest airport, Dr. Franjo Tudjman, is situated, in order to reach your final destination; rather, you can just take a flight directly there.
It is possible that you are aware that while you are in Croatia, you may sail in one of four attractive regions. Each of these areas has its own unique sides as well as its major coastline airport, so get ready and get set to take off.
Airport of Dubrovnik, located in South Dalmatia
Since the Game of Thrones series was filmed there, Dubrovnik has become the destination of hundreds of tourists each day who want to experience a walk down its medieval walls. Dubrovnik has always been a popular tourist destination, but since the series was filmed there, it has become even more popular. Because the walls were constructed between the 12th and 17th centuries and have been very well maintained, you can truly get an idea of what the world was like during the time of the knights.
If you want to begin your journey with some history, flying to Dubrovnik is almost never a poor choice of transportation. You may set sail from either the ACI Marina Dubrovnik, which is widely regarded as one of the most attractive marinas in Croatia, or the ACI Marina Slano.
The Dubrovnik Airport is 22 kilometers away from ACI Marina Dubrovnik, which is located about 6 kilometers outside of the historic walled city of Dubrovnik.
You have the option of taking public transportation or a cab while traveling from the airport to the ACI Marina Dubrovnik. If you take the shuttle bus from the Dubrovnik airport to the main bus station, it will cost you 40 HRK [5.40 EUR]. From there, you may take a local bus line to the ACI Marina Dubrovnik for 15 HRK [2 EUR.] Taking a cab from the airport to the marina is the second alternative, and it will run you about 400 HRK [about 54 EUR]. This is the speedier of the two options. If you are traveling from Dubrovnik to the ACI Marina Slano, you may take a bus for 40 HRK, which is approximately 5.4 EUR, or you can hail a taxi for approximately 600 HRK, which is approximately 81 EUR.
No matter whatever option you choose with, you should be prepared to cruise through some pristine environment in South Dalmatia because the region is abundant in such landscapes. You will sail around Mljet National Park and the protected islands of Lastovo, both of which are full of breathtaking views and are surrounded by crystal clear waters. Not only will you have the opportunity to see the historic city of Korcula and Peljesac, the longest peninsula in Croatia, but you will also get to see both of these places while sailing. This route is undoubtedly a little bit more peaceful than going along the central coast, but it provides a more in-depth exploration of the natural and cultural marvels that exist in this region. And let’s not forget about the cuisine. You may pick up some freshly produced oysters from the area to add a dash of flavor to the already delicious seafood.
Airport of Split, located in Central Dalmatia
The airport at Split is the most convenient place to fly into if you plan on beginning your vacation in Central Dalmatia, which is one of the most visited parts of the country.
From the airport in Split, it is not difficult to go to any of the following marinas, which are located in this part of the Adriatic Sea:
The airport serving Split is situated on the outskirts of Kastela, in the direction of Trogir. It is only 20 kilometers to get to Split, and it is only 6 kilometers to get to Trogir, so they are very close to one other, right? If you are planning on going to one of the marinas that are located in Trogir, the most convenient method to get there would be to hire a cab, which should run you about 150 HRK [20 EUR]. You may take the direct bus line to the main bus station in Split for 30 HRK [4 EUR], or you can take a cab for around 250 HRK [34 EUR] to go to the town of Split. Either option will cost you the same amount.
It is highly recommended that you sail in this direction, particularly if this is your first time sailing in Croatia. Not only do you get to begin your journey in Trogir, a beautiful coastal town set within medieval walls on a tiny island, or Split, the city that Roman Emperor Diocletian considered to be so beautiful that he built his palace there, but you also get the opportunity to visit the islands of Brac, Hvar, Vis, and Korcula. Trogir is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and Split was named one of the most beautiful cities in the world by National Geographic. When it comes to sailing in Croatia, you might say that this is a greatest hits collection of sorts. This route gives you the opportunity to see both the lively nightlife and bustle of the island towns as well as the peaceful natural beauty of the area’s many coves. Docking fees in the towns of Hvar and Komiza may be rather expensive; thus, you should budget appropriately if you plan to take advantage of the area’s natural beauty and moor your boat there. If you’re a gourmet, you won’t be disappointed with this pick because there are a lot of excellent seafood restaurants in the surrounding region. This is an important point to highlight.
Rijeka and Pula Airports – Istra and Kvarner
At the conclusion of our journey, we will sail all the way up to the very top of the country, to the regions of Istra and Kvarner. These are regions that are very well known among travelers, but in terms of sailing, they are not as frequented as the others; however, this does not imply that they are any less appealing, and you will discover why at the conclusion of this article. But before we go into it, let’s figure out how to navigate around in this region.
Some of the most well-known marinas in Istra and Kvarner are as follows:
- ACI Marina Pula
- ACI Marina Rovinj
- ACI Marina Cres
- Marina Punat, Krk
- Marina Veruda Pula
- Marina Mali Losinj
There is no need to take a boat because there is a bridge that connects the island to land. The Rijeka airport, is the primary airport serving the Kvarner region, although it is really located on the island of Krk. It is just 17 kilometers away from the city of Rijeka. To travel to Rijeka, you may take a shuttle bus that costs 50 HRK [6.8 EUR] and will transport you from the airport to the major bus station in the city. Taking a cab is still another choice, and the official airport website even has a pricing list for that service, albeit written in Croatian. It will cost you 255 HRK [35 EUR] to get to Rijeka, and it will cost you 300 HRK [41 EUR] to get to Marina Punat.
The airport at Pula, which is the one located on the peninsula of Istria, is the second airport in this region. You may take a shuttle bus from the airport for 23HRK [3EUR], which will take you to Pula, which is located just 7 kilometers away. In order to go to Rovinj, you will need to extend your journey by an additional 38 kilometers and spend an additional 120 HRK, which is equivalent to 16 EUR. If you want to take a taxi, you can discover all of the information you need regarding the costs on the website of Taxi Pula airport, which is available in English this time around. To go to Pula will cost you 120HRK [15EUR], while getting to Rovinj will set you back 350HRK [50EUR]. There is also the possibility of hiring a cab from Pula Airport to Punat Marina on the island of Krk for a price of 190 EUR (1425 HRK).
I’ll tell you why you should sail in this lovely location once we’ve finished going through the specifics of what we just discussed. Two of the largest islands in Croatia can be found in the Kvarner region: Krk, which is known for its many stunning bays, and Cres, which is distinguished by its oak forest despite being located in a region that is otherwise dominated by pine trees. It is imperative that Veli and Mali Losinj, in addition to Rab, not be forgotten. But Kvarner is not the only fascinating part of Istria; if you sail the opposite way to Istria, you will discover a number of gorgeous coves along the coast that are perfect for anchoring, particularly near the southern end of the peninsula. You could also find yourself at Brijuni National Park, which was formerly Marshal Josip Broz Tito’s personal State Summer Residence while he was President of Yugoslavia. This odd jewel has a Croatian safari park that is one of a kind and is home to rare species. Should I also include the crystal-clear open sea and worry-free sailing, the great cuisine that is world-famous for its truffles, or the ancient and scenic cities with exquisite architecture inspired by the Mediterranean, as well as some unique sites like the Roman Colosseum in Pula? I believe that you have understood what I am trying to say.
To circle back around to the primary focus of this piece: traveling to Croatia via plane. It is simple. In addition to this, you may choose to fly into an airport that is relatively close to the marina of your choice and then get there through public transportation, such as a bus or taxi, or even by renting a vehicle, which is a service that is offered at all airports. Therefore, the only thing that is left for you to do is choose what to put in your bag and where you would want to sail.
Airport of Zadar, located in Northern Dalmatia
As you may have observed, our journey began in the middle, continued to the south, and we are currently making our way back up the coast. The largest city in North Dalmatia is Zadar, and that city also happens to be the location of our airport for this route.
Only 11 kilometers separate the airport of Zadar from the city itself, and it is conveniently located adjacent to a variety of marinas in the surrounding area, including the following:
- D-Marin Dalmacija, the largest marina in Croatia
- D-Marin Mandalina, Sibenik
- Marina Kremik – Primošten
- Marina Frapa – Rogoznica
- Marina Hramina
- Marina Vodice
- Marina Zadar Tankerkomerc
You can take the bus to the main bus station in Zadar for 25HRK [3.40 EUR], or you can wave to one of the taxi drivers who is casually waiting for his next ride, and he will charge you 150HRK [20 EUR] for those of you who like to be on your way as quickly as possible. Either way, getting into the city of Zadar from the airport costs 25HRK [3.40 EUR].
You’ll be glad that you gave North Dalmatia a second thought for your sailing expedition, despite the fact that it might not have been your first pick. You will have the opportunity to wake up in your own private crystal blue bay or sail among the islands of Kornati National park at sunrise with only a few other boats far in the horizon because this region is full of small, beautiful islands and reefs and is definitely not as crowded as Central Dalmatia. This gives you the opportunity to wake up in your own private crystal blue bay or sail among the islands of Kornati National park.
In addition, you won’t have any trouble finding cozy eateries run by families, as well as gastronomic treasures that are well concealed, for prices that are far lower than those in the southernmost regions but just as authentic tasting. In the event that this is not sufficient to convince you, there is yet another spectacular sight along this path. It is the south side of Dugi otok, often known as Long Island, which is the longest island in Croatia. Sailing along its shore, which features cliffs that may reach heights of up to 160 meters, gives one the impression of being in the presence of majesty. In closing, I’ll let you in on a little secret I’ve been keeping, and that is, if you’ve ever wondered where the dolphins in Croatia are hiding, I’ll tell you. You may have guessed correctly; North Dalmatia is the destination to go to if you want to get away from too many boats and too many people. So keep your eyes open, and you might just get a look at one during sunset.