Whether you are taking a Croatia family holiday, seeking water sporting adventure or vibrant seaside nightlife, there is a beach offering exactly what you’re after.
Here are our top picks for the best beaches in Croatia.
Bačvice Beach, Split
Starting on the mainland, Split is not only one of Croatia’s most popular cities, but also home to one of its most popular beaches.
The beach boasts a beautiful setting with mountains across the bay on the far side, clear shallow waters and even holds Blue Flag status.
Known as home to the popular beach game of picigin, you will find many locals at this beach leaping around after a small ball in the surface waters.
This bustling beach features a large capacity for 10,000 visitors, good facilities including showers, a pavilion where crowds dine and drink past sunset and a happening social scene.
The rough sand-like beach area also makes this a popular choice for families as there aren’t many rocks to navigate around and children can play at ease.
If a lively atmosphere of summer games, hip nightlife, family and café-charm is what you’re after this is the beach for you.
If, however, you were hoping to escape the crowds for a quiet retreat, you might want to head straight for the port and take a trip to a more secluded location.
The trendy island of Hvar is popular for its chic atmosphere, buzzing nightlife and sheltered harbour lined with yachts.
Although there is a varied choice of beaches and palm-lined seafront promenade, it is recommended to head slightly out of town to discover the coves and bays to the east of the island.
Uvala Dubovica is a shallow pebbly bay, making it a great choice for families.
Its allure is largely its beautifully clear waters, ideal diving sites and family picnic appeal.
Situated beside a historic manor house, the parking is somewhat limited, and the area is popular with yachts and motorboats in season.
Grebišće is one of the rare sandy beaches on Hvar island, void of too much rock and stony seabeds, providing the perfect setting for family hangouts and shallow paddling.
This beach is reached by walking through the Grebišće campsite, and although it is not shaded, visitors can retreat to the nearby campsite café or the Čorni Petar beach bar, nestling beneath trees for refreshments.
Pakleni Islands Beaches
Heading slightly offshore from Hvar island allows you to experience an otherworldly seaside extravaganza.
Just a short taxi boat ride away from the mainland of Hvar, the Pakleni islands offer unspoilt beaches amidst natural havens of greenery.
Around 10 kilometres in length, the Pakleni Islands attract many sailors, sun-seekers, swimmers, nudists, and nature lovers throughout the busy summer.
Boasting some of the best swimming sites in the region and incredible scenery, you do not want to skip these idyllic shores.
Zlatni Rat, Brac
Also referred to as the Golden Cape or Golden Horn, Zlatni Rat beach on Brac island’s south coast is one of Croatia’s most famous beaches.
Its distinctive shape features a golden stretch of pebbles reaching out into the Adriatic, its shape altering slightly with the currents and winds.
Zlatni Rat is also Croatia’s top windsurfing destination with other water sports activities including surfing, scuba diving, and an inflatable aqua park for children.
From the beach, a glorious pine-shaded walking promenade leads to the village of Bol and the location also features the highest Adriatic island peak in the distance at the Vidova Gora mountain.
Spiaza Beach, Susak
You may have noticed by now that Mediterranean beaches feature more pebbles and rocks than soft white sands.
However, if a sandy beach is what you are after, head to Spiaza beach on Susak island.
The family friendly beach lies at the fringe of Susak village, boasting a shallow paddling bay for almost 500 metres before dropping deep enough to swim in.
The quieter and less crowded Bok bay lies further east and requires a walk across a rocky hillside to get there.
Equally spectacular and sandy, the beach is the perfect spot for a secluded day out in the sun.
Neither beaches are pet-friendly, so you’ll have to leave your pooch at home if planning a day out here.
Located 15km from Zadar and a prized location in Nin, Queen’s Beach is a gorgeous long stretch of sandy shoreline dotted with cafes and bars alongside its shores.
The beach boasts beautiful views of the Velebit Mountains and the medieval town of Nin in the background.
The reedy area behind Kraljičina plaža is rich in peloid mud, effective for soothing sore joints and muscles so is popular for health and wellness.
Bathers here are no stranger to the occasional mud bath, a natural spa treatment while soaking up the sun at one of Croatia’s best beaches.
Perfect for escaping the summer crowds, but close enough to the city for day trips, the ferry ride from Dubrovnik to Šunj Bay takes just under an hour.
The car-free, laid back island of just 220 full-time residents boasts a shingle and sandy mix of beachfront with shallow shores where nudist and non-nudist sections neighbour one another.
To get to the nestled horseshoe cove of Sunj Bay, you’ll have to take a hike along a path across the island’s Mediterranean vegetation, with its beach bars and magnificent setting, you’ll be glad you made the trip.