What do I need to do to sail in Croatia?
No need to worry, sailing in Croatia is relatively easy, and virtually anyone can do it. The low wind speed and clear sightlines make it a perfect destination for beginners to embark on their sailing adventure.
Even if you have just completed a sailing course moments before setting sail in Croatia, you will still be able to navigate independently. If you are not yet confident in your sailing skills, you can always hire an experienced skipper who can not only teach you but also show you the most beautiful bays and cities.
To sail in Croatia, you must possess a valid Navigational and VHF license. If you do not have one, you can always rent a yacht with a skipper. Typically, skippers are locals who have exceptional knowledge of the surroundings and can guide you to the best activities in the region. Hiring a skipper may cost anywhere between 80 to 150 euros per day, and you should be prepared to provide them with their own cabin and meals.
How do I select the right yacht?
There are two primary types of boats to choose from: monohulls and catamarans. Monohulls have only one hull, while catamarans, as shown in the picture below, have two hulls.
Catamarans are more stable, making them ideal for families with children or those prone to seasickness. In contrast, monohulls are easier to manoeuvre than catamarans and offer a cheaper option for the same amount of length. If you are still unsure which type of boat to select, feel free to consult our shipmates!
When is the best time to sail in Croatia?
The best time to sail in Croatia is during the summer months from June to September. During this time, the weather is warm and sunny, the seas are calm, and the winds are generally light, which makes for perfect sailing conditions.
The peak sailing season in Croatia is from mid-July to mid-August, when the temperatures are highest and the waters are the warmest. However, this is also the busiest time of the year, and many popular destinations can be overcrowded.
If you prefer quieter sailing conditions and don’t mind cooler weather, you may consider sailing in Croatia in the shoulder seasons of May-June or September-October. During these months, the crowds have dispersed, the prices are lower, and the winds are generally stronger, which can provide some more exciting sailing opportunities.
However, keep in mind that the weather can be unpredictable during these times, and you may encounter occasional rain or thunderstorms. So, it’s essential to check the weather forecast regularly and be prepared for any changes in conditions.
What are the costs of Sailing in Croatia?
The cost of sailing in Croatia varies based on factors such as the number of people, yacht size, and duration of the trip. For instance, a group of five persons can rent a yacht with three cabins and no skipper for a week in the high-season at a cost of 400 euros per person, excluding additional expenses such as groceries, fuel, and berthing fees. The price of berthing a yacht in Croatia can range from 60 to 150 euros per night, but some restaurants offer free berths to patrons who dine there.
Although renting a sailboat or catamaran in Croatia is considered a safe activity, it is important to consider insuring yourself for the event that something goes wrong. Fortunately, all charter yachts are insured against all risks, but there are several optional insurances for extra coverage. Tubber offers optional insurances such as insurance against damage to the vessel or insurance against illness or accidents. The insurance against damage is called a security deposit insurance and can be taken out when you have chartered a yacht. This insurance is recommended, so you can feel at ease during your sailing trip.
Winds in Croatia
Generally, during spring and summer months, there is a wind blowing at 10 to 20 knots. In the autumn and winter period, a wind of 10 to 28 knots blows. However, there are three dominant winds to keep in mind. These are the Bora, the Sirocco, and the Maestral.
The Bora is a powerful wind blowing from the northeast in Croatia, ranging from north to northeast. This dry and cold wind brings the beautiful weather from the mainland to the Adriatic Sea. It is one of the strongest winds in Europe but is known for its predictable characteristics. Therefore, make sure to be in a harbor or sheltered bay and not on the water when the Bora blows because the wind speed can reach storm strength and usually lasts only 2 to 4 days. Note that the Bora is less frequent in summer and most common in winter.
The Sirocco is a warm and humid wind that can blow at any time of the year. This wind blows from east to south over the Adriatic Sea, causing rough seas and significant rain clouds. When the wind reaches the south, it is the strongest. The Sirocco blows on average at 16 to 20 knots.
Last but not least, the Maestral. This wind is caused by air currents rising from the warmer land and being drawn towards the sea. The result is a land-sea circulation. You can recognize the Maestral by its thick white clouds. The wind starts to pick up in the morning and is strongest around 2:00 pm (16 to 20 knots). In the evening, the wind dies down.
Which itinerary is best for me?
Renting a boat with or without a skipper offers the flexibility to choose your desired route within reason. To help narrow down your options, here is a list of popular harbour cities in Croatia to start your sailing journey based on their proximity to airports and facilities. Additionally, consider the mode of transportation, whether by car or aeroplane, and the associated parking costs.
When planning your sailing trip in Croatia, there are various marinas to choose from to begin your journey. For example, our flotillas start in the Split region and Dubrovnik, and you can reach these harbours via car or aeroplane.
ACI Marina Pula
Located in the heart of Pula, ACI Marina Pula is a slightly more luxurious marina that offers a royal experience. The marina is just a 5-minute walk away from the city center, where you can enjoy beautiful historical sights, delicious food, and a wonderful view of the Roman Amphitheatre from the harbour itself.
The marina is located 5 km away from Pula Airport, and parking is available. The facilities include a restaurant, a bar, a spa, and free WiFi.
Check here the available yachts to rent in Pula
Marina Veruda is a beautiful harbor that is situated in a peaceful and quiet area, not too close to Pula itself. The marina stretches across a beautiful part of the Veruda Bay and offers a pleasant breeze as you step out of the car or taxi. It is only a ten-minute walk away from a village with multiple hotels and delicious food.
The marina is located 12 km away from Pula Airport, and parking is available. The facilities include a pool, a bar, a restaurant, a gas station, a dive club, a children’s playground, and a store.
Things to do in Pula
- Visit the Arena: The Arena is one of the most complete Roman amphitheatres globally, dating back to the first century. It is filled with history, and you will feel like a gladiator walking the passageways.
- Visit the forum: Located in the heart of the city (the city’s main square), the forum usually has concerts and cultural events you can attend.
- Visit the Temple of Augustus: This magnificent temple is over 2,000 years old and offers an opportunity to appreciate ancient architecture and stonework.
D-Marin Borik is a small, cosy marina located outside of Zadar, away from all the busy places. The marina offers a peaceful atmosphere as soon as you step inside. Surrounded by flats and hotels, it is a perfect place to calmly step on your boat.
The marina is located 15 km away from Zadar Airport, and parking is available. The facilities include a pool, a beach, a terrace with a beautiful view, a bar, a store, a Tesla charging station, and a restaurant.
This marina is one of the larger ones, located in proximity to Zadar airport. Although not situated directly in Zadar, it is near the charming village of Sukošan. You can enjoy a beautiful beach with clear waters that is located right beside the marina.
It is only 5 km away from Zadar Airport, and parking is available. Facilities include a store, a beach club with a restaurant, a dive center, a lounge bar, and a kids’ club.
Things to do in Zadar
Explore St. Donatus’ Church, an impressive pre-Romanesque structure built in 800 AD that remains a point of pride for the people of Zadar.
Visit St. Anastasia’s Cathedral, an early Christian basilica dating back to 300 AD that might soon become a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Take a break from sightseeing and visit Paklenica National Park, which features caves, cliffs, and high peaks, including cliffs over 700 meters high.
Marina Boatić is a stunning marina located near Trogir and within walking distance of a lovely little beach. There are several excellent places to eat nearby, and the town is not overwhelmed by tourists. Walking through the old streets will make you feel like a local.
It is 7 km from Split Airport, and parking is available. Facilities include a restaurant, a lounge bar, a store, a fitness studio, and a pool.
ACI Marina Trogir
ACI Marina Trogir is a charming marina on the island of Orkug Gornji, which is easily accessible by car or taxi. The marina is surrounded by numerous apartments and hotels, and it only takes a ten-minute walk to reach the beautiful village.
It is 6 km from Split Airport, and parking is available. Facilities include a diving center, a wellness center, a store, a restaurant, and free WiFi.
Things to do in Trogir
- Stroll along the waterfront promenade, a lovely area surrounded by palm trees, amazing views, and many terraces where you can enjoy a nice cold drink and relax.
- Visit the many beautiful beaches such as Medena Beach, Okrug Gornji, and Kava.
- See the Cipiko Palace, which was home to the Capiko family, a royal family from the 15th century, and features a very detailed Gothic window.
Although further from the airport, ACI Split’s view of Diocletian’s Palace makes up for it. In fact, the marina won the “Tourist Flower – Quality for Croatia” award in 2017. Nearby are two lovely parks with excellent views of the sea.
- Distance: 26 km from Split Airport
- Parking: available
- Facilities: restaurant, store, free WiFi, Tesla charging station.
This marina is close enough to the city to enjoy it, but far enough for peace and quiet. Just a five-minute walk and you can have your feet in the sand at the beach, while on the other side of the marina, there are all kinds of shops to browse through.
- 11 km from Split Airport
- Parking is possible
- Facilities include a restaurant, a pool, free WiFi, a store, and a cafe-bar.
Things to do in Split
- Visit the Diocletian’s palace which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and can be found in the center of Old Town Split.
- Visit the Old Town which has a square (Narodni Trg) that is filled with cozy restaurants and cafes.
ACI Marina Dubrovnik
This marina is one of the most beautiful in Dubrovnik and is just 6 km from the old city center. The marina is surrounded by beautiful woods that are perfect for a nice long walk. It has all the facilities you could wish for.
- 22 km from Dubrovnik Airport
- Parking is possible
- Facilities include a pool, a restaurant, a store, a golf course, and free WiFi.
Things to do in Dubrovnik
- Walk on the Old Town Walls, which protected the city from invaders as well as the sea.
- Take a Game of Thrones walking tour to see all the main filming locations in Dubrovnik.
- Kayak on a sunset tour, paddling under the city walls, and finishing with a beautiful view of the sunset.
But where do you go from here? Take a look at out ready-to-go itineraries:
In case you’re doubting if you want to go sailing in Croatia, here are 10 reasons for you to do so anyway!