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Croatia is found at the crossroads of Central and Southeast Europe, on the coast of the Adriatic Sea. Because of its varied climate and geography, the country has one of the richest biodiversity in Europe. From the Dinaric Alps in the south to over a thousand islands and islets, Croatia has plenty of different landscapes and trekking options to suit all tastes. If you want to discover Croatia in a whole different way, grab your hiking shoes and start packing. Croatia has some of the most beautiful islands and crystal clear beaches of the Adriatic Sea. Can you imagine a better wat to discover the marvels this country has to offer than walking holiday from one island to the next? Go trekking in Croatia and get to know their people, their culture, and their unique traditions. In this blog post, we focus on the three best options for your hiking holiday: on the Biokovo National Park near Makarska and the surrounding islands. As well as Istria, the beautiful peninsula in northwestern Croatia. We also take a look at the Plitvice Lakes.

Croatia is part of the Western Balkans, together with Serbia, Montenegro, Bosnia and Albania. Croatia is all about beautiful flora and fauna. The national parks may be the most famous nature reserves of the country, but even in the country's capital, Zagreb, visitors are surrounded by protected regional parks, forests and even a mountain. Both at the kiss and in the interior of Croatia you will find unspoiled nature. The Biokovo mountain range near Makarska is a popular destination for mountain hiking and combines well with the beautiful beaches on one of the many islands. Istria, the peninsula in north-western Croatia, also offers the opportunity to experience an unforgettable walking holiday.

1. Hiking in the Biokvo National Park

The Biokovo Mountains rise steeply above the Makarska Riviera and are popular with hikers. The summit of Vošac (1,421m high) is only 2.5km from Makarska and is a popular destination. Nearby is the summit of Sveti Jure with an altitude of 1,762m, the highest peak of the Biokovo Mountains. The 196 km2 of the area is protected as a natural park with more than 1,500 plant and animal species, some of which are indigenous. Biokovo is part of of the Dinaric Alps that stretches along the Dalmatian coast. In clear weather it is possible to see from the top of Biokovo the Monte Gargano in Italy, which is 252 km away. To help hikers, the Biokovo Natural Park Visitor Centre is located in the centre of Makarska. Due to its location, the Biokovo Mountains can easily be combined with an island tour on this side of the Adriatic coast. You soon hop from island to island, and on these islands, you can combine a walk with a refreshing dip in the Adriatic.

Find all options for your walking holiday in Croatia here.

Day to Day Programme for a Hiking holiday in the Biokvo Mountains

Check out this 11-day walking holiday programme in Croatia of our partner Life Adventures. Find all details below.

Prepare your senses for a real treat as you embark on an 11-day walking holiday in Croatia, walking amongst the pine forests, vineyards, seasides and agricultural landscapes, situated southeast of the famous city of Split. Croatia walking holidays enables you to really get underneath the skin of the country as you get to know the super friendly locals along the way.

Day 1: Split
- Morning Introductory meeting in Split.
- Afternoon coastal walking tour and Marjan park walk in Split (7 km, 3-4h).

Day 2: Omiš
- Breakfast in hotel.
- Morning transfer to Omiš.
- Great Omiš walking loop (16 km, 150m, 4-5h).
- Hotel***, Omiš.

Day 3: Podgora
- Breakfast in hotel.
- Morning transfer to Podgora.
- Walking tour 1 (17 km, 5h).
- Hotel***, Podgora.

Day 4: Podgora - Biokovo National Park walk
- Breakfast in Hotel.
- Transfer to Biokovo National Park (15 min.)
- Biokovo walking tour (17 km, 5-6h).
- Hotel***, Podgora.

Day 5: Korcula (Sveti llija walk)
- Breakfast in Hotel.
- Morning catamaran transfer from Makarska to Korcula.
- Walking tour: Sveti Ilija walking (981 m, 10 km, 5-6 h).
- Ferry transfer back to Korcula from Pelješac (20 min.)
- Hotel***, Korcula.

Day 6: Mljet Island
- Breakfast in Hotel.
- Morning catamaran transfer from Korcula to Mljet.
- Walking tour in Mljet National Park – North West Park Trail (12-15 km, 4-5h).
- Afternoon catamaran transfer to Korcula.
- Hotel***, Pomena town.

Day 7: Mljet and Mljet to Hvar
- Breakfast in Hotel.
- Walking tour in Mljet National Park – West West Park Trail (8-9 km, 4-5h).
- Afternoon catamaran transfer from Mljet (Pomena) to Hvar.
- Hotel***, Hvar.

Day 8: Hvar
- Breakfast in Hotel.
- Walking tour Brusje Village to Malo Grablje and Dubovica (15 km, 5-6h).
- Swimming in Dubovica (one of the most beautiful beaches on Hvar).
- Short transfer back to Hvar town.
- Hotel***, Hvar.

Day 9: Hvar and Hvar to Vis Island
- Breakfast in Hotel.
- Morning: easy coastal walking tour.
- Afternoon catamaran transfer from Hvar to Vis (Vis town).
- Hotel***, Vis.

Day 10: Vis
- Breakfast in Hotel.
- Walking: Vis – Vino Polje – Titova Špilja – Hum (587 m) – Komi?a / 5-6h
- Transfer back to Vis.
- Hotel***, Vis.

Day 11: Vis to Split
- Breakfast in Hotel.
- Morning catamaran transfer from Vis to Split.
- Tour ends in Split.

2. A walking holiday in Istria

Kvaner Bay and the Gulf of Trieste are top destinations on the Adriatic Sea and they frame the Croatian peninsula of Istria. Embedded in the charming landscape, Istria presents itself as an ideal area for hiking.

The peninsula has much to offer its visitors and proves to be a guarantee for an unforgettable walking holiday in Croatia. During a typical trek in Istria you will explore the Brioni National Park, the Kamenjak Natural Park and climb to the top of the highest mountain, the Vojak peak (1401 m) in the Uka Natural Park. You will enjoy homemade culinary specialties, rich culture, friendly people and stone architecture on this breathtaking peninsula!

The following 7-day programme of Life Adventures offers you the opportunity to discover all the highlights in Istria.

Day 1: Novigrad to Groznjan
Morning introductory briefing with a welcome drink. Walking from Novigrad to Groznjan via Mirna Valley.
Accommodation in Groznjan town / Walking (21 kilometers, approximately 5 hours).

Day 2: Groznjan to Istarske Toplice Walking
Walking from Groznjan via Znidarici to Istarske Toplice. Transfer from Istarske Toplice to Motovun. Accommodation in Motovun / Walking (18 kilometers, approximately 5-6 hours).

Day 3: Seven Waterfalls Walking Trail
Walking from Selca to Kotli and back (circle trail). Transfer to Motovun. Accommodation in Motovun / Walking (15 kilometers, approximately 5 hours).

Day 4: Motovun to Pula and Kamenjak trail
Transfer from Motovun to Pula. Walking in Kamenjak Nature Park - Orchids Trail (circle trail). Accommodation in Pula / Walking (13 kilometers, approximately 4-5 hours).

Day 5: Brioni National Park Walk
Bus transfer to Fazana and boat transfer to Brioni National Park. Walking trail on Brioni. Accommodation in Motovun / Walking (10-13 kilometers, approximately 3-5 hours).

Day 6: Ucka Nature Park Walk
Transfer from Pula to Poklon Pass, walking tour to Vojak Peak (1401 m) and back to Mountain hut in U?ka Nature Park. Accommodation in Lovran / Walking (15 kilometers, approximately 5 hours).

Day 7: Lovran and Kvarner Bay
Morning in Kvarner bay. Bus transfer from Lovran to Rijeka where trip concludes.

3. Hiking at the Plitvice Lakes in Croatia

The national park surrounding the Plitvice Lakes consists of an 8 km long stretch of 16 lakes, bordered by thick forested hills. This is one of the most striking landscapes of mainland Croatia, with water flowing down from the upper lakes through a series of waterfalls and rapids. Walking at the Plitvice Lakes is easy on your own. The footpaths are well signposted and the distances are good for a day visit.

If you are on your way to Makarska for your hike in the Biokovo Mountains and on the islands, stop at the Plitvice Lakes on the way for a pleasant and natural warm-up for your hiking holiday in Croatia.

What is the weather like in Croatia?

Croatian coast has a typically Mediterranean climate consisting of hot, dry and sunny weather during summer months. Average temperatures during summer lies in the high 20°C, although it is more likely that you’ll have temperatures well into the 30 °C. The sunniest island in Croatia is Hvar, with over 2,700 hours of sun per year. Split, Vela Luka (on the island of Korcula) and Dubrovnik are the next sunniest spots in Dalmatia. Croatia boasts with very low humidity, sitting at about 60%, so even in the scorching sun the heat is bearable.

How does tipping in Croatia work?

Tipping is not obligatory in Croatia, but it is always appreciated if the service provider did a good job. A tip of 5 to 15 percent is greatly appreciated in restaurants and in other forms of services provided to you.

What should I pack for my trek in Croatia?

Packing the right clothes can make a huge difference during your trek. Here is a recommended packing list so that you don't miss any important items while preparing your bags for this adventure:

- Jacket – warm, wind & waterproof, soft-shell,
- comfortable clothes,
- sunglasses, sunscreen, lip balm, any other sun protection,
- water bottle (preferably reusable),
- first aid (a small basic kit with items such as bandages, antiseptic wipes, gauze, antibacterial ointment, sterile pads),
- large backpack to pack all your belongings,
- Hiking shoes– choose wisely.

IMPORTANT:Appropriate footwear is an essential part of any hiking tour. There are a variety of models on the market designed to meet the needs of different types of hikers; the challenge is finding the one that works best for your purposes.

Choose softer and more flexible hiking shoes, appropriate for longer walks. Those shoes are typically made of breathable material, are comfortable, and do not require breaking in. Shoes like that are usually not waterproof, but Croatia during the summertime has very little rain and the odds are good that during your tour, there will be no rain.

Where do I book my Walking holiday in Croatia?

The great thing about the internet is that you can find anything anywhere. The same goes for hiking and trekking providers. However, since there is so much on offer, it can be overwhelming to find a trekking operator of your liking. That is why does the selection for you. We only join hands with the best hiking and trekking providers we can trust. You can rest assured that the trekking operators on are reliable. Find here your option for your walking holidays in Croatia. Not sure yet? Get in touch with our trekking experts for free advice. They're always happy to help!

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