Croatia's best island holiday destinations

Friday, 27 July 2014 3:19 PM

If you keep up with the latest holiday trends, you are sure to be aware that Croatia is the place to go for an upmarket break in the sun. Most tourists choose the historic city of Dubrovnik, but if you would prefer not to follow the crowd, you should take a look at what the country's islands have to offer.

The Croatian part of the Adriatic has more than 1,000 landmasses, although only around 80 are inhabited islands. Most of them have fantastic beaches that never get busy, so are perfect locations for a summer getaway.

Some of them also have historic and cultural attractions to visit, together with good transport links, so you can enjoy a few island-hopping excursions. Which you select will depend on exactly how you plan to spend your holiday, but if peace and quiet is your top priority, you can't really go wrong with any of them.

Hvar

Located off the coast of Dalmatia, Hvar is one of the most beautiful destinations in the Mediterranean. Its shoreline is made up of coves with secluded beaches and pretty fishing villages, while inland you will find lavender fields and forest-covered hills.

In the unlikely event you wish to take a break from relaxing on the beach and walking in the idyllic countryside, there is lots to do here. A sightseeing trip in the town of Hvar will take you to the Cathedral of St Stephen, the distinctive Loggia clock tower and a Franciscan monastery, as well as to the Museum of Modern Art in the main square.

You can also take a tour of the olive groves or around one of the island's vineyards, which may give you a taste for the local produce. There are some excellent seafood restaurants in Hvar, as well as some good traditional eateries in the smaller towns.

Pasman

Pasman is an idyllic island, with stunning golden sand beaches nestled between the clear blue sea and fields full of aromatic plants. It is difficult to imagine a better setting in which to spend a relaxing afternoon.

The population of Pasman is just 2,000, so don't expect lively nightlife, but then the slow pace of life is the island's biggest attraction. The busiest places you will encounter while staying in a Croatian holiday villa here will be the traditional restaurants in the villages.

Krk

The largest of the Croatian islands, Krk is a popular destination with people interested in history. The main town, also called Krk, is home to an imposing cathedral and the 12th century Frankopan Castle, while Baska has some magnificent old churches to explore.

A holiday here is not all about visiting landmarks, as the island also has lush forests to explore and famously clean beaches to relax on. There are a number of dive centres and sailing clubs on the coast, if you feel the need to get active during your break.

Korcula

Located off the coast of Dalmatia, Korcula is the perfect choice for a peaceful break in the sun. The larger towns all have good beaches, while you will never be far away from one of the many sheltered coves that contain deserted stretches of sand.

If those are not quiet enough for you, it is possible to hire a small boat to tour the 20 uninhabited islands close to Korcula. They are mostly covered in pine trees and vegetation, but their shorelines have beaches that can be accessed from the sea and will guarantee you an afternoon of solitude as you soak up the rays.

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