Chartering sailing yacht in Croatia to explore hundreds of densely scattered islands is definitively the most unique holiday experience at Croatian coast. It is amazing how much can you see within a week. It is recommended for First-time visitors and beginners to focus on a specific area and explore the best spots and islands of that region. 7 day sailing itinerary in Split is best if you wish to sail around Hvar, Brač, Vis and Korčula islands.
It is very important to take your time and experience Croatian coast at a slow pace. This is the most rewarding rule if you are into a relaxing, fun and authentic sailing advnture. There are beauties and breathtaking places behind every corner that will definitively inspire you to come back for more.
Ideally is to contact a reliable yacht charter agency and they will recommend the itinerary to meet you expecetations and suit your travelling style. There are 4 main yacht charter destinations where you can rent a bareboat charter in Croatia. Begin your sailing odyssey in UNESCO world heritege sites SPLIT or DUBROVNIK, north Dalmatian city ZADAR or set sail from PULA harbour in the northern Adriatic.
Renting a private sailboat in Split or UNESCO world heritage sites Trogir and Šibenik assures you an excellent opportunity to explore the most popular sailing destinations in Croatia. Recommended for beginners, day sailors and family flotilla sailing is a standard 7-day Split charter itinerary including world-famous islands in Croatia Vis Hvar Korčula and Brač. This is also the easiest route with a comfortable eye-of-sight navigation between 5 or 6 large islands with almost no reefs and shallow waters in between.
Even experienced sailors should be alert for dense maritime traffic and buzzing speedboats transferring day visitors to famous Hvar beaches and impressive blue cave on the remote Vis. Rather follow an alternative "off-the-beaten-track" Split sailing itinerary and discover peaceful anchorages and island ports on less visited parts of Hvar and Brač. Here you can relax and enjoy in solitude and seclusion of your very own private cove.
If you own a adequate sailing certificate this is best area to hire a bareboat charter in Croatia, while novice sailors better opt for a skippered sailboat or an exclusive crewed catamaran charter to fully relax enjoy their precious holiday moments at the Croatian coast.
The diverse northern Adriatic with Istria peninsula and Kvarner gulf is actually a hidden gem and probably best kept secret among the sailing routes in Croatia. Being so close to Italy, this region fusses together a distinguished Italian charm spiced up with a twist of a laid back Mediterranean pulse.
Rent sailing charter in Croatia and set sail from ancient Pula city. Here you have the opportunity to discover charming Venetian towns Rovinj, Vrsar and Poreč where you can blend into their buzzing promenades. The perfect getaway from cosmopolitan feel is Brioni national park at a doorstep of Pula. Even more seclusion and intact nature you can expect on mosty uninhabited islands of the remote Kvarner bay.
Sail around the island of captains Mali Lošinj, discover turquoise waters of Silba or visit peaceful village on Unije island. Take the advantage of crystal clear water surrounding these islands for various water sports, snorkeling or swimming. Istria is world-known of impressive historic sites, great recreational grounds, water attractions, notorious summer festivals and amazing food delicacies based on wild truffles and best wines of Croatia.
Densely scattered islands of Zadar archipelago are a paradise for sailors and sailing inclined. Northern Dalmatia is crisscrossed by numerous modern marinas and premium sailing destinations from where you can rent yachts in Croatia. Begin your sailing week in UNESCO world heritage site Šibenik or start Croatia sailing holidays from second largest Dalmatian city Zadar. Both destinations are close to Zadar airoprt and ideal starting places to discover iconic Kornati national park or sail upriver to Krka national park.
Zadar-Sibenik archipelago with Kornati is densest group of islands in the Med. which makes this region among safest island hoping areas in the word. For a day sailor it might be challeging to navigate between near 500 tiny islands and reefs, that is why a skippered Zadar yacht charter will provide the best of a sailing experience in centrak Adriatic. Kornati islands are also something of a gourmet's paradise and hiring a Croatian skipper is your best opportunity to receive some first-hand tips on where to eat fresh, local and tasty.
Stone-walled medieval city of Dubrovnik is the capital of southern Dalmatia and so much more then just a "Game of Thrones" setting. It is a great launchpad from where you can set sail and discover south Adriatic islands. This remote archipelago is full of culture, history, unspoiled natural beauties and a unique landscape diversity. Dubrovnik airport is just a half an hour drive from modern marinas downtown which are great spots to start your yacht holidays in Croatia and navigate the routes of ancient mariners.
South Dalmatian islands Korčula, Mljet and Lastovo are the ultimate getaways from metropolis. Just one hour sail up north, lies Elafiti island chain. Soothing subtropical climate and a relaxing natural environment of these idyllic islets is a welcoming turn from the busy streets of Dubrovnik. The impressive green lakes and clear water of national park Mljet is breathtaking. Or sail beyond to Lastovo national park and try unique delicacies in family-run restaurants and taste best Croatian wines surrounded with most beautiful Croatian beaches on Pelješac peninsula.
Dubrovnik sailing itinerary is among less-known Adriatic charter routes also because there are only 2 marinas from where you can charter sailing boats in Dubrovnik. That is why consider in booking your charter holiday in Croatia fist minute if you wish to sail the southern routes.
Sailing season in Croatia stretches from early May until late October. July and August are definitively Best months to sail Croatia for first-time visitors and day sailors. High summer in Croatia is ideal for a family sailing trip, honeymoon sailing vacation or a relaxing fun-loving cruise with your favourite company.
Although yacht rental prices in Croatia during the peak season are highest, this sailing period is reserved for an indulging cruising adventure filled with simple holiday pleasures.
Summertime at the Adriatic coast is simply glorious. Croatian islands are literally soaking in sun. With warm and dry long summer days, light winds cooling the daily heat, sea temperatures are perfect for various water activities and the social life at the coast is in full swing. Crowds are almost impossible to avoid in these months. In August maritime traffic is densest around the central Dalmatian islands. Italians are crossing Adriatic sea with their motor boats and you can hardly find a free place to moor in the evening. So get to your marina earlier or reserve your berth beforehand.
In southern Dalmatia expect less marine traffic during August. So sailing trip in Dubrovnik in late July and August could be a good choice. While in June and July Zadar region and northern Croatia is where you should start your trip. Experienced skipper will know how to avoid crowded areas and recommend best places to visit during your charter week in Croatia.
Sailing in Croatia in June or even late May is when you will receive the very best of a Croatia yacht vacation experience. Early summer is when the days are longest, weather stable and you can always find a free berth or place in a restaurant. These are the ideal months for flotilla yacht holiday events.
Get inspired into taking Croatia sailing holidays in shoulder season, catch the autumn sunbeams and experience last minute sailing in Croatia.
If you wish to take the advantage on lower shoulder season boat charter prices then book your sailing vacations in May, September or even October. The water is still warm enough for a quick swim and moderate winds provide pleasurable moments under the sails.
Sea temperature in October is still suitable for a quick dip. Less marine traffic in off season provides an excellent opportunity to discover all the popular sailing destinations in a relaxing laid back Mediterranean fashion. Serious sailors who prefer more challenging sailing conditions will find extra sailing pleasures in a November winter sailing regatta or book one of Croatia flotillas that start around Easter in April.
There are more than 50 marinas in Croatia from where you can charter yachts in Croatia and start your sailing odyssey. The itinerary on Croatia private yacht charters is completely flexible and can be easily adjusted with your skipper before and during your journey. Where and how you want to spend your nights during your week, generally depends on the weather conditions and the level of the comfort you need.
Do I choose a quiet village port, modern marina or spend a night on anchor?
A mixture of above options gives the best balance through the week for most sailors. Anchoring in Croatia is still free of charge. There is nothing like spending a calm night on anchor being lulled to sleep surrounded by lush-green vegetation and crisp-blue seas, where you can take a swim in the morning calm. In such anchorages, you mostly depend on your tender to transfer you ashore. Supply your boat a day earlier, because you probably won't find any shops there.
Buoy anchorages are considered safer and at a reasonable price. Simply secure your sailing yacht by attaching the mooring ropes to a buoy and enjoy your evening in a gentle swing of your yacht. This in more environmental alternative from anchoring, preventing your anchor plough the seaweed and destroying underwater flora.
In some isolated coves you can find charming fisherman's houses. Here you can safely moor on private pontoon or a buoy in front of the restaurant. Sometimes these flotilng docks come with electrical power. Local skippers know these places and will be happy to secure your reservation. It is an excellent opportunity to safely dock your boat plus eat local, frsh and tasty in a remarkable tranquil ambience. North Dalmatian islands with Kornati national park and parts of Šolta and Brač is where you'll will find best ones.
Overnight in a private marina if you prefer a little extra comfort and upgraded services including fresh water refill, shore power, toilet and bathroom facilities. ACI marinas can get a little expensive, but you'll be moored on lazy lines and protected by a breakwater that reduces the motion of the boat to a very gentle sway. If you are lucky you won't be squeezed in a tight space between two loud boats full of partygoers.
Staying in a local port or island village you will receive the best of both worlds. As soon as you secure your boat to the town pier you are already a part its buzzing coastal promenade. This is an excellent chance to stretch your legs, explore town's cultural and historic sites or visit world class restaurants in the area. Multitude of services (lazy-line mooring, power, water, toilet facilities,...) are included in the price.
What are The marina costs in Croatia?
Croatia has practically no tidal difference, while currents hardly reach 2 knots in narrow passages between the islands. Weather during the charter season is pretty much the same as everywhere else in the east Mediterranean (Italy, Greece). You can expect relatively calm and sunny weather during the summer season at the Croatian coast, though you might encounter an isolated thunderstorm roughing up the sea.
The cooling Maestral wind is prevailing at Croatian Adriatic sea. Blowing from the sea and picking up in the afternoon when the sun heats up the continental parts. When the wind direction follows the sun is always good sign predicting stable and calm weather. Stay alert and beware of the mighty BURA winds coming from the coastal mountain chain. That is when the conditions at sea are too dangerous and maritime traffic is banned.
The forecast is issued every 6 hours on VHF channels in different frequencies that your skipper will monitor all the time. While you can check daily reports for Adriatic on a detailed weather forecasts issued by national Meteorological and Hidrological site(DHMZ) in English, German and Italian language.
Croatian marinas practice so called Mediterranean method of docking in reverse, mostly because the floating pontoons are almost at the sea level so it's more practical to get on and off your yacht. Expect little less privacy, but you can always overnight on a buoy, and hope for a friendly neighbor.
Docking in a marina is your skipper's duty, but a helping pair of hands is always welcome. 4-lined system of mooring fixes the whole yacht to a floating pontoon with 2 docking lines at stern and 2 mooring lines at the bow.
The whole procedure, however can be quite handful in more challenging weather conditions. That is why is very important to quickly tie the windward side of the sailboat.
So, heading in backwards, someone stands at the back with a boat hook, picks up the raised rope, walks with it along to the front of the boat, pulls it from the water and secures it to the cleat on the front. Meanwhile someone needs to cast 2 docking lines to the port manager and secure the stern. Don't worry if you make a mistake, your skipper will take charge so everything and everyone is safe and secure. Read more about safety at sea in a Boating Safety Guide.
Take the advantage of first minute prices on bareboat charters in Croatia and book your boat early at a reliable yacht charter agency. Most boats and skippered yachts are still available in preseason so you can choose among a wide range of sailing charters from best sailing destinations in Croatia.
Check with your agent for the exact cost for a sailing holiday and beforehand specify what you wish to have included on board (Wi-fi, SUP, Hostess, Cook, Water toys,...). Luxury yacht charters in Croatia already come with multitude of inclusions on board. Most of crewed catamarans in Croatia as well. Don't let the unexpected costs surprise you. Most of the skippers in Croatia are multilingual, but they get booked fast as well.
Motor yachts are definitively faster then catamarans or sailboats, but if you are ecologically oriented, and prefer smooth sailing over noisy motoring rather go for sailing charters. Although wide catamarans assure more privacy and space on board, sailing experience on a sailing boat is definitively more authentic and fun. Plus a sailboat needs less wind to get moving. Chartering catamaran In Croatia might bring higher overall costs for the week, but you will get to enjoy extra onboard comfort and exclusivity. However, newer sailboat models provide surprisingly spacious cockpit and interior with impressive volumes.
Renting a sailboat with 4 cabins, suitable for a group of 6 persons plus skipper will cost you between 3.500 and 4.200 euros within the summer season. In June and September 3.000€ on average.
The average price of a sailing catamaran in Croatia is between 5.000 and 6.000 euros per week within the high season months July and August. Shoulder season (June, September) between 3.500€ and 5.000€ per week.
High summer on Adriatic might be busy, but the weather is fair and stable. For beginners or a day sailor ideal time for a relaxing sailing odyssey is anywhere between late May in October. High summer might get bit crowded in marinas and restaurants, but you can always find a quiet place to moor if you avoid the popular places and sail alternative Croatia charter itineraries. Check the weather before departure and pack accordingly.
During the summer months, you can only charter sailing yachts and catamarans in Croatia in weekly periods starting en ending Saturdays. Short sailing trips can be arranged for 3-5 days in the off season. If you wish to experience Croatian coast at a relaxing and indulging pace and enjoy your holiday moments in a laid back fashion go for a 7 day sailing itinerary.
Don't over pack and rather bring soft duffel bag instead of a hard suitcase. Here you can find some tips on what to pack for a sailing trip. Double cabins in a sailboat or catamaran are bright and spacious, but they can get uncomfortable when 2 large suitcases are blocking your passage.
Please stick to your check in hours written in your boarding pass. Your yacht charter should be prepared and cleaned before your embarkation. There are tidy beaches close to every marina where you can refresh. Check out is usually after 8 AM the next Saturday. It is expected to return your boat to marina on Friday before evening for the underwater inspection.
For a beginner or a day sailor is recommended to keep the routes within 30-mile distance (max. 4 - 5 hours sailing per day). If you are not an experienced sailor, adjust your sailing skills to the conditions at sea so that everybody will feel relaxed and cozy. It is impossible to visit all the places within a week, so take enough time to enjoy and make your holiday count. During morning calm, explore best swimming spots in the or simply chill while waiting for afternoon winds. If you don't own adequate sailing license or feel uncertain in your sailing skills, hire a skippered yacht.
Fill the boat lockers with enough food and supplies at least for the first 2 days. Grocery is cheaper in the markets outside marinas. Sometimes charter companies in Croatia offer to buy supplies for you beforehand. Most remote islands might have limited supply, but you can always buy the basics. Bring enough bottled water and don't forget paper towels, garbage bags, toilet paper, sponges, washing liquid, coffee, various snacks.