Croatia can be classified as a Pannonian-Adriatic country due to its Central European and Mediterranean position. This position adds to Croatia’s rare blend of glamour and old-fashioned authenticity making it Europe’s ‘it’ destination, where beaches and sunshine vie for attention with cultural treasures, ancient architecture and time-tested folk traditions.
Despite its reputation as Europe’s vacation hotspot, Croatia hasn’t given in to mass tourism. With Croatia’s tourist board adopting the motto The ‘Mediterranean As It Once Was’. This is a country in transition, on the brink between Mitteleuropa and Mediterranean, it offers good news for visitors on all budgets: Croatia is as diverse as its landscapes.
There’s a buzz and undeniable star appeal to Croatia’s coast. You’ll get plenty of glitz and glamour in Dubrovnik and Hvar. For those wanting peace and quiet, hideaways aplenty wait to be discovered, including remote lighthouse islets, fetching fishing villages, secluded coves and Robinson Crusoe–style atolls. Families flock to the string of safe beaches, and there are activities galore for all ages. Enjoy a slice of pristine, roam rugged wilderness or get active – hike, bike, abseil, paraglide, raft and canoe. Zagreb may play second fiddle to nearby Vienna, but this pocket-sized capital has an attractive cafe life, a brand-new contemporary art museum, ancient attractions and a jam-packed roster of festivals and events.
The climate is mainly continental but at higher altitudes, there is also a mountainous climate. In the coastal regions, slightly south of the island Rab, the climate is classified as Mediterranean. Most people visit Croatia between April and September. Although the coast is too cool for swimming in April, you’ll enjoy warm, clear skies in the south. May and June are great months for all outdoor activities. In these months, Italian and German tourists have yet to arrive and you’ll enjoy long, sunny days. July and August see the tourist season swing into gear. September is perhaps the best month to visit since it’s not as hot as summer and October should still be fine along the coast.
Croatia has been slowly crawling its way up to the top of Europe’s culinary rungs. Its chief assets are locally sourced, prime-quality ingredients from the land and sea, creatively prepared by celeb chefs or cooked up home-style in family-run taverns. The wine regions of Croatia are as burgeoning as the country itself, and its olive oils (particularly those of Istria) are getting top awards.