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Discover & Experience Croatia in Autumn – Travel Guide by Bolt Travel

Published on 13/11/2018 by Jozo Suton
Discover & Experience Croatia in Autumn

We all know that, throughout the world, Croatia as a popular travel destination is typically associated with summer and images of all-day sunshine, hot weather, blue sea, white beaches, vibrant and diverse natural landscapes, bustling cities and towns along the coast, outdoor activities and entertainment as well as fine dining and wining. Also, as summer ends and autumn begins, people consider Croatia less compelling to travel because of lack of time to travel, the cold weather and the depiction of dullness that is related to autumn.

Why to Travel to Croatia in Autumn?

However, it is a shame to be thinking that way. Croatia in autumn can be as beautiful and interesting as in summer. As recommended by the locals, autumn like spring is the ideal time to travel to Croatia because of the many reasons and perks it brings. Just to name a few, here are five reasons why you should visit Croatia in autumn:

Low Prices of Goods and Services

Low Prices on Travel Commodities During Autumn
Low Prices on Travel Commodities During Autumn

Once the main season finishes and autumn begins, the prices slowly start to decrease and restore to normal which lasts until the next main season. Therefore, the main goods and services, which are usually related to travel, become much more affordable such as airplane tickets, public transport, accommodation, catering service at restaurants and cafes and tour packages.

Fewer Tourists

Fewer Tourists in Croatia in Autumn
Fewer Tourists in Croatia in Autumn

In September, many travellers start to return to their home countries. As it progresses into autumn, Croatia becomes less crowded with tourists. It becomes much nicer and comfortable to travel to Croatia and visit the most popular travel sights without standing in line and bumping into people. Also, the people, who work in or closely with the tourism industry, are able to concentrate more effectively and delicately on delivering their high-quality products and services to you.

Nature Is Beautiful as Always

Croatia is beautiful all year round, even in autumn. From the middle of September, at the start of autumn and until October, it still good enough to visit the most popular destinations on the picturesque Croatian coast where you can enjoy the lovely warm sunshine and gaze at the Adriatic Sea and stunning natural landscape shining in bright summer colours. During this time, it is perfect to visit the national parks such as Krka and Plitvice.

Nature Is Beautiful as Always

From October to November, when it is ideally to visit the continental regions in Croatia, for instance, Slavonia, Lika, the Croatian Zagorje and Zagreb, you can see the entire nature showing their beautiful red, orange, yellow and brown autumn colours along with leaves falling down from the trees. Moreover, in some of the continental regions, from November and all through December, there can be snow and ice which cover that whole landscape in white, making it a unique winter wonderland.

Mild Temperatures

Unlike in summer, when the weather is always scorching hot and sometimes unpleasant to travel, in autumn, the weather conditions in Croatia are moderate and suitable for travelling.

In the early part of autumn, between September and October, there is plenty of sunshine during the day with warm temperatures and cooler nights. Great for doing outdoor activities or just strolling through the beautiful stone paved streets in the coastal towns and cities. It is even suitable to swim in the sea, as the water can be quite delightfully warm during the period. Nevertheless, make sure to bring your umbrellas and raincoats with you, because it rains often than in summer.

As autumn moves forward so do the temperatures go down slowly. Depending on what part of Croatia you are thinking to stay, the weather can be quite different.

Between October and November, on the Croatian coast, the weather is still enjoyable with enough sunshine and moderate air temperatures. However, it is very uncomfortable to swim in the sea, as the water becomes very cold. Also, it rains frequently.

In the continental and mountainous regions of Croatia, the weather is very drastic. The temperatures are colder than before with high temperatures going between 9 and 15°C. There is a decent amount of sunshine. Oftentimes, the sky is foggy and cloudy with plenty of precipitation such as rain and even snow. However, it should not stop you from visiting Zagreb, Slavonia or even Lika. Therefore, it would be recommended for you to wear casual autumn clothes such as long-sleeve shirts, pants, jackets and even jumpers or sweaters, just to keep you warm and comfortable.

The same conditions apply into the end of autumn, towards December. On the coast, the weather is quite similar with colder temperatures, frequent rain and less but enough sunshine. While over inland, the weather becomes bitter cold. There is less sunshine, more rain and snow. Nevertheless, it might be a chance for you to visit Croatia and its countryside regions and see the beautiful natural landscapes and charming places that are gently covered with snow especially near Christmas time when you can sense the charm and cheerfulness of the regions and places within them.

A Chance to Experience Life in Croatia As A Local

If you would like to visit Croatia and find out what is like to live a life as a local in Croatia, then autumn is certainly a good time to start. Whether it is just for a couple of days or for a long period, in autumn you can discover the true and authentic image of Croatia and its people. Also, it provides you with a chance to meet new Croatian friends, develop your Croatian language skills, learn more about the Croatian customs and culture and imitate for yourself a daily routine of a Croatian what may gain you a deeper understanding and respect towards the Croatian citizens and country.

What to Do in Autumn?

Have you ever wondered what do you do in Croatia in autumn? Where should you go? What places should you visit? Is there anything exciting to do like in summer? As a matter of fact, we can assure you that even in autumn there are so many places to visit and things to do in Croatia. Therefore, just to help you out with all of your questions, in this following section, we are providing you with a list of ideas and suggestions of what to do and where to go while staying in Croatia during autumn.

Sightsee All Croatia’s Most Popular Tourist Sites and Attractions

The first thing on your list should be to visit and see all the popular places and attractions that Croatia has to offer. Autumn provides you with the perfect opportunity to deeply explore and visit all places that you wish, with less crowd, low prices and moderate weather that will make the whole travelling experience enjoyable and satisfying. For help, we have chosen some towns and cities on the coast and inland we think will be suitable for you to visit during autumn.

Visit Croatia’s Coastal Towns and Cities

In autumn, you should definitely visit the most popular cities and towns in Croatia that are scattered along the beautiful coastline of the Adriatic Sea. If you have not yet had a chance to deeply explore all the desired place, now is the time. No matter what part of autumn you are in, it is always suitable to see any of the picturesque places and discover all its magnificent ancient-old attractions.

Because of low prices, fewer tourists and moderate weather, it should be easier and comfortable for you to walk along the stone paved streets, discover all the main attractions and enjoy all the commodities in each town or city such as dining and wining at restaurants, drinking coffee at a local café, visit museums, art galleries and theatres, engage in cultural and social events or having a great time at a disco or nightclub.

Some of recommended towns and cities include:

Visit Croatia’s Continental Towns and Cities

Besides the coastal places in Croatia, autumn gives you the opportunity to visit some of must-see Croatia’s continental towns and cities which are less visited in the main summer season.

In the inland part of Croatia, there are many towns and cities which span across a vast area in different regions such as Slavonia, Lika and Croatian Zagorje. Some notable or important places to visit include:

By visiting them, you can witness the actual charm of autumn in Croatia, for instance walking through the cobbled streets and squares or passing through the beautiful parks and looking how the leaves begin to change into their red, orange, yellow and brown autumn colours and fall down gently onto the ground.

Explore the Natural Wonders of Croatia

One of the most important things to do when travelling in autumn in Croatia is to experience and explore the beautiful natural landscape. You will never get disappointed as it beautiful all year round, even in autumn.

Visit the National Parks

Especially, we suggest you to visit the national parks in Croatia which represent an example of Croatia’s most beautiful unspoiled natural landscapes and preserved wildlife contained within their defined areas. Because of low ticket prices and less crowd during autumn, the national parks give you with the best opportunity to see the full beauty of autumn with its stunning colours and unique natural features such as rivers, lakes, waterfalls, forests and mountains. There is a total of 8 national parks in Croatia from which we recommend you to visit:

Visit and Explore National Park Plitvice Lakes in Autumn

Plitvice Lakes National Park

Visit and Explore the National Park Krka in Autumn

Krka National Park

Visit and Explore the National Park Risnjak in Autumn

National Park Risnjak

Discover the beauty of Croatia’s unique regions

If you would prefer to see more of the natural beauty of Croatia beyond the national parks, then we suggest you to discover the beautiful natural surroundings of each region in Croatia. Just to be clear, for a small country of just 56.000 km2, you will be surprised to see how Croatia consists of many regions and that each region is beautiful and special in its own way. However, just to help you, we selected these 3 regions that we think they are perfect to travel in autumn:

Sail the Adriatic Sea

Besides the magnificent national parks and unique regions’ natural surroundings, there is one more thing that makes Croatia stand out from other destinations. It is the beautiful Adriatic Sea that has more than thousand islands and islets which makes up the rich archipelago. Each island is unique with its own quirky chocolate-box old towns and beautiful diverse nature. If you wish to visit them in autumn, then the best time will be between September and October when the sea is still ideal to sail and explore one of the islands. Also, the ferry tickets are cheaper outside of the main season. We recommend to visit the following islands:

Explore Brač and Hvar in Autumn

Brač and Hvar

Explore the islands of Korčula and Mljet in Autumn

Korčula and Mljet

Explore the islands of Vis and Rab

Vis and Rab

Engage in Outdoor Activities in Croatia

One of the most entertaining ways to explore the beautiful natural landscape In Croatia is to engage in outdoor activities. Because, there are so many things to do, we decided to present you with a few ideas we think may help you to explore the natural beauty of Croatia in a more fun way.

Catch Some Time on Croatia’s Most Beautiful Beaches

If you are planning to visit the towns and islands on the Croatian coast, do not forget to spend some time being on the beach. Even in autumn, it is perfect to visit the beach and for instance take a quick swim or dive into the deep blue sea, relax and sunbathe on the lovely warm pebble shore.

Generally, you should visit the beaches between September and October when there is plenty of sunshine, high temperatures going between 20 and 30 °C which in return makes the water enough warm to swim. Moreover, with fewer tourists, you will be able to enjoy time on the beaches with more comfort and privacy, even on the most secluded beaches you can find.

From all the beaches in Croatia, we have chosen these 5 beaches for you to visit:

Have Fun Doing Water Sports Activities

While you are visiting the beaches on the coast or the nearby islands during autumn, there are many outdoor water sports activities you can try to do that will make the whole trip entertaining and unforgettable. The best time to do them again will be between September and October when the weather is still appropriate to be on the beach or out into the sea.

Diving

Croatia is renowned as one of the best destinations in the world for underwater exploration, thanks to the crystal-clear waters of the Adriatic Sea.

Have Fun Diving Into the Deep Water of the Adriatic Sea
Have Fun Diving Into the Deep Water of the Adriatic Sea

The clarity and purity of the water are ideal for enjoying deep diving. With a mask and a snorkel, you can explore the seabed, its rich and varied fauna and flora. With underwater reliefs that alternate between 25 and 1.300 meters deep, divers can enjoy the colourful vegetation and diverse sea life all along the coast; from Savudrija to the north, to Dubrovnik to the south.

Sailing

Whether you charter a sailboat or relax on an island cruise, sailing is one of the best ways to discover Croatia’s remarkable coast and its lovely islands.

Have Fun Sailing Along the Croatian Coast
Have Fun Sailing Along the Croatian Coast

With more than thousand islands, a coastline that stretches from north-west to south-east for roughly 2.000 kilometres, sailing should be an amazing experience as you sail across the Adriatic Sea, with the sun shining upon your face and wind blowing in your hair, looking at the vast body of water expanding beyond the horizon, visiting the islands, and stopping by at hidden secluded beaches for a quick swim.

Windsurfing

Another exciting activity to do while being on the coast is windsurfing. There are many places all along Croatian coast to windsurf, but the most popular is Viganj, a small village on the Pelješac peninsula, just north of Orebić.

Having Fun Windsurfing Along the Croatian Coast
Having Fun Windsurfing Along the Croatian Coast

It offers good winds and windsurfing conditions for all levels and all year. During the early part of autumn, between September and October, the weather conditions for windsurfing are similar as in summer, but suitable for advanced windsurfers because of the stronger winds occurring more often.

Leisure Outdoor Activities

While Croatia has magnificent beaches, which makes for an ideal place to kick back and relax, it is also worth exploring the Croatian inland and its natural sights that makes Croatia so special. In the inland, during autumn, you can do some relaxing leisure outdoor activities which with less effort and more fun you can visit the most popular and beautiful natural features from rivers, lakes to the forests, hills and mountains.

Hiking & Trekking

Whether walking over green flat terrains or climbing upon hills and mountains, Croatia is one of Europe’s finest hiking and trekking destinations. As part of the Dinaric Alps, Croatia boasts a priceless wealth of flora and fauna. These unspoiled natural beauties and all its secrets are yet to be discovered. Climb magnificent mountains and enjoy its scents, sounds, colours and unforgettable panoramic views. Hiking in Croatia gives you the possibility to enjoy the freedom of its wildlife. Some popular hiking & trekking destinations in Croatia include mountains Dinara, Velebit, Biokovo, Mosor and Kozjak.

Horseback Riding

If you would like to discover the natural landscape of Croatia, but in a unique way, then you should try to go on a horse. In Croatia, horseback riding is a popular activity and you can find it in almost every place. Equestrian clubs and local ranches offer different riding experiences and trails, while at some places you can spend an entire horseback riding holiday.

Do Adrenaline Activities

While Croatia has magnificent beaches, which makes for an ideal place to kick back and relax, there are also many adrenaline activities you can try to do during in autumn. It is recommended to them between September and October when the weather is still appropriate to be outside.

Ziplining

One of the most unique ways to explore the natural beauty of Croatia is by zip-lining.  Experience the adrenaline as you are flying across the sky and looking at the perfect scenery of the surrounding natural landscapes.

Have Fun Ziplining in Croatia
Have Fun Ziplining in Croatia Across Vast Valleys, Hills, Forests and Rivers

The best place to try ziplining is in Omiš. As the most popular zip-lining site in Croatia, the Omiš Zipline sits above the Cetina River Canyon where you can experience the freedom of soaring through the skies among some of the most beautiful natural landscapes of Croatia as you gaze at the beautiful sight of the Cetina River and the surrounding forested hills. It is also one of the fastest ziplines in Croatia with speeds going up to 65 km/h which makes the whole experience smooth and thrilling.

Rafting

With an abundance of rivers, lakes, rapids, and canyons, Croatia offers a variety of sites to experience rafting: from rivers Mrežnica, Dobra, Kupa, Korana and Una in the continental part of Croatia, to the rivers of Zrmanja and Cetina in Dalmatia.

Have Fun Rafting Along the Mighty Rivers in Croatia
Have Fun Rafting Along the Mighty Rivers in Croatia

The most popular site for rafting is river Una. Springing out of Lika in Croatia and flowing into Bosnia and Herzegovina, the river Una acts as a natural border between Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina. Along the river there are many routes suitable for rafting. However, the most interesting and stunning part of the river Una for rafting is between Štrbački buk waterfall near the Una Mamea Park and Lahovo. This 15 km long route takes four hours of paddling and it passes entirely through Una National Park.

Canyoning

Another exciting way to explore the beautiful natural landscape in Croatia is canyoning. Using a variety of surviving skills including hiking, abseiling and swimming, experience an adventure of walking through the extensive Croatian canyons which are carved by the test of time and beautiful mighty rivers and try to overcome different natural obstacles that are on the way.

Have Fun Canyoning in Croatia
Have Fun Canyoning in Croatia

One of the best places to go canyoning is Omiš. At a slow pace, start a journey in the Cetina River Canyon and carry onwards along the beautiful Cetina River discovering all the natural secrets that lie within.

Cycling

As a thriving cycling destination, Croatia is perfect for cycling. With your own bike, you can travel along the main roads and see many places or ride through small country roads and paths that crisscross the landscape taking you further into the chosen region and exploring the hidden wilderness. One of the best regions to cycle would be Istria.

Have Fun Cycling in Croatia
Have Fun Cycling in Croatia

In Istria, there are many cycling trails to choose from. One option for you would be to base yourself somewhere in central Istria and take a daily bike trip through the picturesque small towns and villages sitting atop green hills and surrounded by beautiful olive trees and vineyards. Another option for you would be to take the famous Parenzana Trail which starts from the northern border with Slovenia at Savudrija, going through the central parts of Istria including Buje and Motovun and finishing in Poreč which is located on the western side of Istria.

Rock Climbing

With Croatia being a mountainous country, it is a rock climbers dream. Croatia can offer everything from multi-pitch traditional routes, sports climbing (single and multi-pitch) to deep water soloing (DWS) and bouldering on glorious limestone rock.

Have Fun Rock Climbing Up the Wuthering Heights in Croatia
Have Fun Rock Climbing Up the Wuthering Heights in Croatia

The most popular place to go rock-climbing is Paklenica National Park which is considered to be the best rock-climbing in Croatia and in Southern Europe. There are approximately 400 marked climbing routes of different difficulty level and length. The most popular climbing rock within the park is Anica Kuk.

4. Taste the Delicious Delicacies Grown from Croatian Farming Fields

While on holiday in Croatia, no matter where you are, there is always something good to indulge. As an emerging food hotspot, Croatia has a diverse cuisine that offers high-quality delicious foods ranging from fish and meats to local grown fruit and vegetables. Also, Croatia has an excellent choice of wine and alcoholic beverages that are domestically produced.

Taste the Delicious Croatian Delicacies
Taste the Delicious Croatian Delicacies

However, have you ever wondered where all the produces come from and how are they grown? If you are food enthusiast and you are curious to learn more, then one of the best ideas for you would be to visit a farming establishment in the Croatian rural areas, owned by lovely families who dedicatedly cultivate and harvest the agricultural lands.

Visit Croatian Local Farms
Traditional Croatian Farms

One of the best times to visit them it is during autumn when people start going to the fields to harvest all the produces. If you are interested in participating When they have collected all the fruits and vegetables they use them, in general, for storage, winter food like making jams, compotes or ajvar (traditional red capsicum relish) and making other types of products such as olive oil, vinegar and alcoholic beverages (e.g. wine, beer and different types of rakija), either for themselves or other people.

If you are interested in helping in farming activities, the people will be happy to show you many things such as riding a horse, milking a cow, feeding the chickens, harvesting the vineyards, olive trees, collecting fruits and vegetables from their garden and more. After harvesting the produces, you can also participate in food preparation activities, from making olive oil and wines and preparing meats for drying and smoking to cooking wonderful meals with freshly picked ingredients and finally tasting them as the fruits of their labour.

Visit Some of the Beautiful Vineyards in Croatia
Beautiful Vineyards in Croatia

For example, picking grapes from vineyards in Istria, Pelješac or Slavonia, collecting olives from olive tree plantations in Dalmatia and Istria, hunting for mushrooms such as truffles in the inner parts of Istria and chestnuts deep in the woods of continental Croatia.

5. Visit Autumn Festivals and Events in Croatia

Through the year, everywhere in Croatia, there are festivals and events organised which offer plenty of fun and unforgettable experience. Even in autumn, you may find some interesting festivals and events which we think will make you stay in Croatia during autumn entertaining.

Ston Wall Marathon

Just at the beginning of autumn, there is a unique marathon race called “Ston Wall Marathon”.  Held on the third Sunday of September, participants compete in a 42-kilometre long racing track where they have to run and climb the famous fortified wall in Ston which is the longest wall in Europe and the second longest wall in the world after the Great Wall of China.

Ston Wall, Ston - The Place of the Ston Wall Marathon
Ston Wall, Ston – the Second Longest Fortified Wall in the World and Place of the Ston Wall Marathon

Despite the tough race the runners have to put through, they will certainly enjoy the spectacular views once they are on the top of the fortified wall. There are also less challenging 4 km and 15 km events. For visitors, the Ston Marathon provides a suitable excuse to visit and sample the famous oysters and fine wines of Pelješac.

Dubrovnik Good Food Festival

If you are interested in indulging some good food while visiting Dubrovnik and check out the filming site of Game of Thrones, then you should the Dubrovnik Good Food Festival.

Good Food Festival Dubrovnik
Good Food Festival Dubrovnik

Held every October, the Dubrovnik Good Food Festival is a four-day event that culminates in a 300-metre long showcase for chefs, pastry makers and caterers to exhibit their tasty delicacies along the whole length of Stradun, Dubrovnik’s main street. In the background, accompanied by musical performances, you may find plenty of workshops where people present their delicious delights. Best of all, you get to taste so much of what you see.

Istrian Truffle Festivals

Deep in the woods of Istria, underneath the soft soil, there lies one of the exquisite foods for which this region is most famous for, the white truffle. As a way of dedicating this delicate type of mushroom, people all over Istria every year in autumn organise truffle festivals where they present all kind of meals made with white truffles and organise fun activities such as learning all about white truffles and learning how to hunt for truffles and collect them.

Istrian White Truffles - The Prime Jewel of Food and the Main Star of Istrian Truffle Festival
Istrian White Truffles – The Prime Jewel of Food and the Main Star of Istrian Truffle Festival

The most popular truffle festival to visit in Istria is the Zigante Truffle Days festival in Livade near Motovun. Named after Giancarlo Zigante, the man who discovered the world’s largest white truffle, this festival is held every autumn between mid-September and mid-November where guests can try culinary specialties made with truffles as well as wine and other indigenous Istrian products (e.g. olive oil, prosciutto, sausages, cheese and homemade rakija).

Chestnut Festivals

In autumn, there is a myriad of food festivals organised in many Croatian towns and villages that celebrate seasonal foods and autumn recipes.

Enjoy Tasting Lovely Roasted Chestnuts at Chestnut Festivals in Croatia
Enjoy Tasting Lovely Roasted Chestnuts at Chestnut Festivals in Croatia

Exceptionally popular are chestnut festivals locally known as kestenijada or marunada. Held during October, the chestnut festivals prepare entertaining programme where guests can enjoy in chestnut hunting and of course tasting delicious savoury and sweet food products made from chestnuts. Some of the most popular chestnut festivals include Chestnut Festivals in Hrvatska Kostajnica and Lovran in Istria.

Saint Martin’s Day

The making and selling of wine have been a tradition in Croatia for many centuries and remains a prominent and proud part of its heritage. To cherish the fruits of their labour and their heritage, the people in Croatia have chosen a day to celebrate it. They picked 11th November which is also known as Saint Martin’s Day.

Taste Croatian Wines While Celebrating St. Martin's Day in Croatia
Taste Croatian Wines While Celebrating St. Martin’s Day in Croatia

On St. Martin’s Day or Martinje as widely called, people come together to celebrate the newly produced wines as well as the beginning of harvesting the vineyards. It is very popular in the continental part of Croatia, from Zagreb to Slavonia, including Istria. There, you can visit local wine cellars where people organise dinners to try their wine products together with tasty homemade meals. The main ceremony of the event is the baptism of wine when people dress up as priests and baptise and bless the grape juices into wine usually with lots of singing and dancing and making fools of themselves. One of the most prominent ceremonies devoted to St. Martin is held in Kutjevo on 12th and 13th November. Located in Slavonia, Kutjevo is a town well known for its aphrodisiac wines and gorgeous vineyards.

Visit the Wine Cellars on St. Martin's Day in Croatia
Visit the Wine Cellars on St. Martin’s Day in Croatia

However, because people during this event tend to drink more than usual, it is important to say be careful when driving to the places where St. Martin’s Day is being held. If you are planning to drink wine and other alcoholic beverages during the festival, remember do not immediately drive any vehicle when leaving the event. If you consumed a lot more alcohol than usual, we advise you to stay overnight at the nearest hotel or apartment so next morning you could drive home safe and sound.

Christmas Fairs

At the end of November, people in Croatia slowly prepare themselves for Christmas and winter holidays. In order to make the citizens and tourists feel the spirit of Christmas, many major Croatian cities and towns decorate their streets and squares in Christmas decorations and organize Christmas Fairs which last from the end of November to the middle of January. From many Christmas Fairs Festivals, we recommend you to visit the Christmas Market in Zagreb which for several years has been declared as the best Christmas Fair in Europe.

Zagreb Christmas Market
Feel the Spirit of Christmas by Visiting the Enchanting Christmas Market in Zagreb, Croatia

The Christmas Market in Zagreb or locally called Advent in Zagreb is the biggest Christmas Fair in Croatia. It is held in Croatia’s capital and largest city Zagreb. Running from December to January, the Christmas Market has a programme packed with events, concerts and food specialities. Some key spots at the Zagreb Christmas Market include:

  • Ban Josip Jelačić Square – the huge main square sparkles brightly with music and concerts on an open-air stage, food marquees and a children’s programme. There’s a huge Christmas tree, the fountain is transformed into a light display and there is a cosy, heated, covered conservatory serving food and drinks. On weekdays and at weekends there is live music.
  • Fooling Around – an innovative and modern cultural and gastronomic event during the Christmas season, with a recognizable design and a relaxed atmosphere.
  • European Square – pedestrian zone in the very heart of the city offers a vivacious Christmas event: souvenir and Christmas decorations market, a selection of food and beverages and music events in the evening.
  • Zrinjevac Park – one of the loveliest spots in Zagreb. Lanterns light up the avenues of trees and the old music pavilion looks like a little glittering palace. Artists’ stalls and a great selection of traditional Christmas gifts, Christmas food and drink specialities from decorated tiny wooden huts. This is the spot to experience Zagreb winter specialities including baked štrukle, a warm baked pastry dish with soft cheese. There is mulled wine, hot chocolate and special Christmas cookies. Live music here is every evening and also in the morning at weekends.
  • Ice Park on King Tomislav Square – A Christmas fairy tale awaits you in one of Zagreb’s most beautiful parks – ice skating rink, selected food and beverages, as well as music events. This is the place to watch people skating and having fun. Visitors are encouraged to join in!

6. Visit the Nearby Countries Around Croatia

While staying in Croatia, many travellers tend to visit the nearby neighbouring countries. Depending on where are you staying in Croatia and for how long, you should try visiting some of the nearby neighbouring countries such as Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, Slovenia, Hungary and Italy. For help, here are some ideas:

Bosnia and Herzegovina

If you are staying somewhere near the border of Bosnia and Herzegovina such as in Dalmatia, Lika or Slavonia then you should definitely plan a trip to Bosnia and Herzegovina. Rich with beautiful natural landscapes similar to Croatia and other neighbouring countries and charming towns that are a melting pot of different cultures seen in the architecture, people and customs.

Some notable places to visit include:

Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina

the capital and largest city Sarajevo,

Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Mostar, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, famous for its Old Bridge and surrounding Old Town and

Medjugorje, Bosnia and Herzegovina

Medjugorje, a renowned Catholic pilgrimage site known as the place of the apparition of the Virgin Mary.

Serbia

While staying in places in Eastern Slavonia, like Osijek, Vukovar or Vinkovci, it would be a good idea to visit Serbia. Once apart of former Yugoslavia, as was Croatia, Serbia has many lovely cities and towns full of history and stunning natural landscapes that include lovely forested hills and mountains, vast plains spreading across valleys and beautiful lakes and rivers.

Some notable places to visit in Serbia might include

Belgrade, Serbia
Church of St. Sava, Belgrade, Serbia

the capital and largest city Belgrade, sitting at the confluence of the Sava and Danube Rivers with its charming Kalemagdan Fortress;

Smederevo, Serbia
Medieval Smederevo Castle in Smederevo with the View of the Danube River

Smederevo, just 28 km downstream from Belgrade, once the capital of Serbia and known for its medieval Smederevo castle one of the largest fortifications in Europe;

Roman Ruines in Serbia
Ancient Roman ruin sites in Viminacium and Sremska Mitrovica in Serbia

ancient Roman ruin sites in Viminacium and Sremska Mitrovica and finally the second largest city and one of the prettiest,

Petrovaradin Fortress, Novi Sad, Serbia - the Second Largest Fortress in Europe
Petrovaradin Fortress, Novi Sad, Serbia – the Second Largest Fortress in Europe

Novi Sad, the place of Petrovaradian Fortress, the second largest fortress in Europe.

Montenegro

While travelling to or staying in Dubrovnik, it would be a good idea to extend your trip by visiting Montenegro. Similar to Croatia, Montenegro has a rich beautiful landscape with gorgeous plains and forests inland and a breathtaking coast that stretches along the Adriatic Sea. The most impressive places to visit are

Kotor, Bay of Kotor, Montenegro

the towns of Kotor in the Bay of Kotor and

Budva and Sveti Stefan on the Budva Riviera, Montenegro

Budva and Saint Stefan (Sveti Stefan) on the Budva Riviera.

Slovenia

Northwest of Croatia, lies our small neighbouring country Slovenia. Surrounded by Italy, Austria, Hungary and the Adriatic Sea, Slovenia is a hidden gem in the heart of Europe where you see a variety of destinations that include vibrant cities, charming villages, snow-capped mountains, majestic nature and scenic beaches.

The most impressive places to visit are

The Enchanting Lake Bled in Slovenia

the enchanting Lake Bled with a small island in the middle of the lake, which is home to a 17th-century church;

Ljubljana, Slovenia

the largest and capital city Ljubljana with a unique charm and lovely attractions such as the Triple Bridge where three picturesque bridges span the river right next to one another, castles and medieval squares in the Old Town and Tivoli Park;

Postojna Cave, Slovenia

and the extensive cave system in Postojna. If you are staying somewhere in Croatia close to Slovenia like Istria, Rijeka or Zagreb then you should pay a visit to Slovenia, you will not be disappointed.

Hungary

Hungary is situated northeast of Croatia, close to the towns of Varaždin and Osijek. A lovely country, famous for its fantastic food (e.g. goulash and paprika) and wine, fascinating history and culture as well as nice-looking cities and towns and beautiful nature with cultivate plains, forests, lakes and the mighty Danube river that flows through Hungary.

Some of the most popular places you should definitely visit are

Budapest, Hungary

the capital and largest city Budapest, considered one of Europe’s most beautiful cities and home to the world’s largest thermal water cave system as well as the world’s second largest synagogue and third largest Parliament building;

Lake Balaton, Hungary

Lake Balaton, surrounded by numerous villages & resort towns, it is Europe’s largest freshwater lake and it is sometimes referred to as the “Hungarian sea”;

Eger, Hungary

and Eger, located in the northern part of Hungary, famous for its magnificent baroque buildings such as the cathedral that sit on top of the impressive Castle Hill with the city expanding around it.

Italy

Across the Adriatic Sea, lies our famous neighbouring country Italy. It is such a great privilege to be located so close to Italy. Just mentioning the country brings so many associations and images about Italy, for instance, the majestic architecture where buildings range from the ancient Roman times and Renaissance period to the modern era, culture, delicious food like pasta, pizza, lasagne and risotto, lovely people, unique cities and towns like the capital and largest city Rome, Venice and Verona and the gorgeous nature landscape ranging from the beautiful coast and islands that flow along the Mediterranean sea to the spectacular green rolling hills and valleys with cultivate plains and massive mountains such as the Apennines elongating like a spine across the middle part of Italy and the mighty Alps located in the north.

Places in Italy
Places in Italy

Because of its huge size and diverse regions and cities, it would be a great idea to use Croatia as a hub spot if you wish to visit and stay in Italy, but plan to return back to Croatia. Therefore, if you are planning to travel to Italy by car, the best places to stay in Croatia would be in Istria, Opatija or Rijeka located just an hour drive away from Italy. From there, you can organise a trip to Venice, Verona and Milano. However, if you would like to visit Italy from Dubrovnik or Split then it is possible to catch an overnight ferry Split to Ancona or Dubrovnik to Bari. From there, you can plan a trip to Rome, the Vatican, Naples, the towns along the Amalfi Coast, Amalfi and Positano or the small country San Marino.

Conclusion

In conclusion, Croatia in autumn is beautiful and interesting to visit. With many reasons for travelling like low prices, fewer tourists and mild weather and things to do such as sightseeing Croatian towns and cities, exploring the beautiful natural landscape or visit charming autumn festivals and events, Croatia should be on your checklist because we assure you will have a wonderful experience travelling to Croatia during autumn.

Category: Blog, Travel Tips

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