A guide to booking Croatia sailing holidays

Oct 15, 2013 BY Paul McWilliams

The majestic Adriatic coastline of Croatia is one of the world’s most beautiful, littered with crystalline blue waters, secluded coves,  picturesque islands and historic port towns. All of which make Croatia sailing holidays some of the best on the planet.

Croatia sailing holidays flickr image by Ahenobarbus

If you’re thinking about sailing in Croatia, whether you’re a novice or experienced sailor there are a number of ‘learn to sail’, flotilla sailing and boat charter holidays to choose from offering some of the most spectacular sailing waters you could ever imagine.

Where to start Croatia sailing holidays?

Most Croatia sailing holidays either start or finish in Split or Dubrovnik. Split is a beautiful seaport characterised by an incredible old town built within the actual walls of an ancient Roman palace of the Emperor Diocletian. Dubrovnik, a UNESCO World Heritage site since 1979, is equally spectacular, with its walled sea port that oozes charm.

These two ports form ideal natural start and end points. The sailing in between involves navigating the many beautiful Adriatic islands including Hvar, Mljet, Milna and Korculabirth – the place of Marco Polo. With waters and marinas set up for sailing, dedicated sailing areas like the Kremiks and beautiful scenery like the Kornati National Park, it’s like Croatia was designed as a sailor’s paradise.

Croatia sailing holidays Wikimedia image by I am sailing

Sailing options

Beginnners will benefit from one of the many learn to sail holidays on offer throughout the Adriatic coast. Most are IYT approved sailing schools offering international crew, flotilla skipper, bareboat skipper and ICC assessments for different skill levels.

Larger groups often choose to sail in a flotilla programme, which allows a number of different skill levels to sail together in a number of boats. Flotilla sailing also allows you to benefit from specialist local knowledge and has a real social side to it that suits the Adriatic lifestyle and sailing conditions perfectly.

Smaller groups and singles can charter entire boats, usually with an instructor who can teach you about the skills required to navigate the waters, and will usually throw in a little of the fascinating history of the region as a bonus. Croatian authorities do insist upon a ICC, RYA Day Skipper or higher qualification, so an instructor or sailing guide is essential if you don’t have any of these.

With so many sailing options and steady but not too aggressive winds, Croatian waters are ideal for a family sailing adventures too.

Croatia sailing holidays Wikimedia image by Shanticm

Additional Croatia sailing options

Croatia sailing holidays also give you a little bit more than other sailing breaks. Pull into a small harbour on one of the islands and stop at local restaurant for lunch. Enjoy freshly caught seafood and local wine, washing it down with a shot of the domestic rocket fuel they call rakija.

Picnic on idyllic beaches, rent bikes and explore the interior of some the incredibly beautiful islands, or simply lie on deck and drink in the views. Swim in some of the clearest water on earth, stroll through historic port towns and experience a new island every day of your trip.

It’s not just the sailing that’s exemplary in Croatia, it’s the whole package. Wherever you start from and however you choose to sail, a Croatia sailing holiday will be simply unforgettable.

Adriatic Sea, Croatia, Dubrovnik, Europe, Jezera, Kornati National Park, Kremik, Mediterranean Sea, Omis, Pula, Split, Trogir, Zagreb
Day Skipper, Flotilla, ICC (International Certificate of Competence), RYA (Royal Yachting Association), UNESCO (World Heritage Site)
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