From the isolated and unexplored natural wonder it once used to be, Croatia has slowly but steadily developed into a powerful tourist magnet with more and more people appreciating it's vivacious and rich historic cities, sprawling vineyards and soft sandy beaches meshing with translucent waters. This stunning country is thus an attractive cocktail of tradition as well as modernity. Boasting over 1,100 islands, this picture-perfect-postcard city is comfortably perched in Southeast Europe, to the east side of the Adriatic Sea.
While holidaying in Croatia, be sure to first stop by at Dubrovnik, one of the most glamorous and glitzy tourist attraction in the country. The city's Old Town is contained within tough medieval defensive walls and has been classified under UNESCO world heritage site. Stroll around the ramparts and marvel at the fortresses, towers and cannons that are spruced around. Climb up the walls to enjoy breathtaking panoramic views of the stunning city as well as the vast Adriatic Sea shimmering under the sun.
History aficionados can head over to Split and visit the Diocletian's Palace that comprises of four significant gates - three from land and one originally opened onto the water. Highlights also include the beautiful Peristyle (an arcaded courtyard), which is also the home to Cathedral of St. Domnius, a classy and stunning bell-tower. Stroll around the pedestrian-only Old Town (UNESCO World Heritage Site) and get transported back to bygone-era Croatia. When it comes to the country's capital, Zagreb, the main attraction is the medieval Gornji Grad (Upper Town). Some of the sight-seeing points here include the cathedral sporting a Ne-Gothic facade and twin steeples, Church of St. Mark showcasing a colored tiled roof and the 13th century Tower of Lotrs?ak which provides beautiful views of the megalopolis. The innovative Museum of Broken Relationships paying homage to failed relationships is quite the favorite among tourists and locals alike.
The stylish and chic town of Hvar is located in the magnificent Dalmatian islands. Famed for hosting celebrities and the yachters during the holiday season, this car-free town is synonymous to glamour and glitz and not surprisingly houses the nation's top hotels the best seafood restaurants. Kor?ula Town is one of the major settlements on the island of Kor?ula, residing in South Dalmatia. While visiting, be sure to catch a glimpse of the traditional moreska sword dance, performed for tourists outside the town walls on summer evenings.
If you head over to Zadar's car-free old town, be sure to marvel at the numerous fine Romanesque churches, constructed between the 9th and 13th centuries and is brimming with religious paintings and ornate golden treasures. Drop by the Venetian-era seaside town of Rovinj and be greeted with pastel-colored homes and an array of pebble beaches. However the main attraction is the Batana Eco-Museum placed on the seafront which talks about the batana, a kind of wooden boat used by local fishermen.
There are several national parks in Croatia that are well worth the visit. The Plitvice National Park comprises of luscious and dense forested hillsides and is fringed by 16 emerald-blue lakes with gushing waterfalls. One can try and catch a glimpse of several wild animals including wolves, bears, owls, eagles and falcons. Other significant parks are Kornati National Park, Brijuni National Park and Mljet National Park. When it comes to chilling and lounging around in the beaches then the Zlatni Rat beach, situated in the south coast of Bra?, is the perfect destination for beach-a-holics. Renowned as Croatia's number one wind surfing destination,other water sports such as paddle boats, sea kayaks, banana boat rides and so on are also available.
When it comes to shopping, seek out items such as local handicrafts, glass jewellery, woodcarvings, ceramics, Croatian wine and spirts, olive oils and truffles all make up for excellent souvenirs and gifts. The nightlife in Croatia is alive and buzzing with a plethora of bars and clubs spruced in the country. Be sure to try out Rakhija, a kind of brandy, prepared from plum, grapes, figs and several other types of fruit and aromatic herbs.
Croatia is home to plenty of stay options catering to millionaires needing the best luxury hotels the country can boast of but at the same time offers abundant modest and cheap accommodations for the budget tourists.
Croatia experiences moderately warm and rainy continental climate. The best time to visit the country would be May and September as it sports a pleasant weather.