Why sailboat rental in Croatia is so popular?
First of all, there is the amazing clear water of the Adriatic Sea
. The shoreline is mostly rocky and consists of pebble beaches. Thanks to that the sea is not clouded by swirled up sand. The Croatian Adriatic coastline is 1,777 km long. From the most southern to the most northern point it is only 526 km as the crow flies but it is amongst the most indented shorelines in Europe. This means that counting the islands´ shorelines as well Croatia has a total of 5,835 km. It therefore accounts for three quarters of the total Adriatic coastline. There is a myriad of bays and archipelagos with numerous small islands.
Dalmatia and its ports host stunning Venetian architecture. The historical buildings are well preserved from times of the Italian city-state that ruled this land between the 16th and the 18th century. The blend between unspoilt nature and Renaissance architecture makes this part of Croatia so undeniably attractive.
Famous heart-shaped island "Galesnjak" near Zadar
To be exact, there are 718 islands and islets, 289 rocks and 78 reefs along the coastline. Fourty-eight of those are permanently inhabited and host charming medieval towns. This is why Croatia is also very aptly called the 'Land of a thousand islands
In addition to this, you can find some of the most modern ports there. The yacht charter fleets are very well maintained. You can expect a high standard of service quality for very little money. You can choose from about 3,500 bareboat charter yachts from over 300 charter companies. Croatia is the largest charter cruising area in the whole world. There is always a safe harbour within reach and the climate is mild. The winds during vacation season are moderate and therefore ideally suited for family sailing holidays. In addition, if you charter a yacht in Croatia, you get to enjoy the light and healthy local cuisine, the view of the lush green vegetation ashore or some of the attractions like the waterfalls in the Krka National Park.
Aerial view of the sailing paradise "Kornati Archipelago"
Some of the most important figures for yacht charter in Croatia:
- Location: North-eastern Mediterranean Sea, on the East Adriatic Coast
- Capital: Zagreb
- Length of coastline: 1,777 km
- Coastline including islands: 5,835 km
- Largest islands: Cres, Krk, Brac, Hvar, Pag, Korcula, Dugi Otok, Mljet, Rab, Vis, Losinj
- Population: ca. 4,225,316
- Climate: Mild, Mediterranean
- Country code: +385
- Main charter bases: Pula, Zadar, Sukosan, Biograd, Sibenik, Trogir, Split, Dubrovnik
Besides the above-mentioned reasons, the Croatian Coast is relatively easy to reach by car or coach from Austria, Germany, Italy, Hungary, Czech, Poland, Bulgaria, Serbia and Bosnia. This makes the boating holiday planning more flexible, because you do not necessarily a flight.
How much does it cost to charter a yacht in Croatia?
Actually, boat rental prices in Croatia are the lowest in the Mediterranean. In low season, you can find a small sailboat with 2 cabins for 4 person from 800 Euro per week. Of course, this will not be a brand-new boat. The average weekly charter price for a 3 cabin sailboat lies around 2,000 €.
For a new 40 feet catamaran
you have to pay in between 4,000 - 6,000 Euro weekly. On such a spacious and comfortable vessel, you can accommodate 8 - 10 persons. If you do not have a skipper license or if you are not willing to navigate yourself, you should calculate a fee of 150 Euro per day for a captain. On demand, boat rental operators can also lent you water toys like Stand-up-paddle boards, kajaks or underwater-wings. Crewed yachts provide also a hostess and or a cook on board.
Prices for yacht charters in Croatia differ by 40 % between high and low season. If you are lucky, you might spot a highly discounted last minute charter deal
two to four weeks before the travel date. Still the best option is to book at least 8 months in advance. This will ensure that you can count on a decent Early-Booking Discount
while you still have a great choice of newest and best-equipped yachts to choose from.
What type of boats are for rental in Croatia?
Along the Adriatic Coast, you can find the biggest selection of rental boats in the whole world. The manifold options include chartering monohull sailboats
or catamarans. You can also hire a motor yacht
or book a fullboard cruise on a traditional Gulet. Sailboats and powerboats up to 17 metres you can often rent without captain if you hold a skippers license. This form of boat rental is called "bareboat charter
A sailing yacht anchoring in a quite clear bay
A luxury motor yacht in the famous port of Hvar on the Island Brac
Furthermore, there are day charters or fishing boat rentals, mostly with smaller powerboats in between 5 and 10 metres length. Those boats are usually rented out per day.
If you are new into sailing and enjoy group travels, you might opt for a flotilla sailing holiday or a cabin charter trip. Last not least a crewed luxury yacht hire
can make the dream of your perfect charter vacation come true.
4 K Video about a Charter Crew enjoying a sailing week in Croatia
Which are the most visited ports and marinas?
For your boating experience, you can head to the following major harbour towns: Pula
, Sukosan, Biograd,
, Trogir, Split
. You can navigate along the Dalmatian coastline or hopp around the islands. The distance between Dubrovnik in the South to the Middle-Dalmatian town Zadar is 155 nautical miles. From Zadar to Pula in Istria you have another 70 nautical miles of beautiful coast with many islands. On this itinerary, you can throw your anchor at islands like Pag, Krk, Cres and Losinj.
Harbour view of Split, the second biggest city in Croatia
The Marina Sukosan
7 km south of Zadar has an impressive 1,400 moorings and offers many services including several dry docks. In Biograd´s spacious Marina Kornati
in North Dalmatia there are 750 berths and Marina Mandalina
in Sibenik, for instance, has room for 350 yachts up to 100 metres length.
If you head for Split
, there are three marinas to choose from. The ACI Marina Split just southwest of the historic centre has 364 moorings for yachts up to 80 metres. The Mariana Lav is situated in a luxury hotel complex 8 km southeast of the city centre and hosts 74 boats of up to 40 m length. Finally, the Marina Kastela, 7 km from the airport, has 400 berths for yachts up to 100 metres.
The picturesque fisher village Mali Ston on the island Pelješac
With the multitude of islands, you have every hand full to choose where to go for your sailing yacht charter in Croatia. There is Hvar
, which is great for party but also has a lovely old town and an impressive fortress to visit. Korcula
equally features an amazing old town and the nearby Mljet
has a paradisiac national park with lush greenery and clear lakes. Skradin
lies at the entrance to the Krka National Park with its many massive waterfalls. Then you can cruise all the way up North towards Krk
and stop by at Brac
, Losinj, Korcula
and other fascinating islands.
The wonderful historic port town Korcula
Another hugely popular destination is the Kornati National Park
with about 140 islands in the northern part of Dalmatia. It is the densest archipelago in the Mediterranean. Mooring is only allowed in designated bays, some of which are equipped with mooring buoys and several with restaurants. The other mooring option among the islands in the park is the ACI-operated Marina Piskera on the SW side of Otok Piskera, which is open from April to October.
What is the best time to sail the Adriatic coast?
The sailing season in the Northern Adriatic Sea goes from April until September. In the South, between Split and Dubrovnik, you can fine and dry conditions until end of October.
The Bora and the Sirocco
are the dominant winds in the Adriatic during the winter (October - May). In the summer months, the Maestral
prevails. In general, though, summer brings only moderate winds. In addition, there are many elongated islands that extend parallel to the shore and are separated by channels. The cruising grounds are therefore much protected and safe for family charter holidays. The sunniest part of the country consists of the outer islands, for example Hvar and Korcula. Here, a whopping 2,700 hours of sunshine per year are recorded.
Brief summary of the sailing weather in Croatia with the example of Split:
- Average wind speeds: 2-4 Beaufort
- Main season: May - October
- Month with highest average temperature: August, 29.8°
- Month with lowest average temperature: January, 15.4°
- Month with highest average precipitation: December, 113 mm
- Month with lowest average precipitation: July, 28 mm
- Months with most sunshine hours: July, August 13 per day
- Months with least sunshine hours: December, January 5 per day
Which cultural and nature highlights are worth to visit in Dalmatia?
Visiting the capital Zagreb only makes sense if you anyway pass by when arriving with your own car from northern countries. There are many impressive old Dalmatian towns worth your while. Visit the historic centres of Sibenik, Zadar and Trogir. Alternatively, go to Dubrovnik "The pearl of the Adria" with its famous fortifications and take the cable car up the hill to enjoy some breath-taking views. Split
is beautiful and has far more to offer than just the Diocletian Palace.
The Diocletian Palace in the historic centre of Split
Moreover if you like ancient sites, the amphitheatre in Pula
built by Emperor Augustus is for you. Building began in the year 2 AD and it sits about 23,000 people.
The Plitvice Lakes National Park
, UNESCO world heritage site, is the largest national park in Croatia. You can reach it best from Biograd, Sukosan or Zadar. Just moor your yacht in one of those marinas and check with local travel agencies to arrange a trip to this amazing nature park. The 120 kilometres ride with a rental car will take around 90 minutes from Zadar.
Walk through the stunning Plitvice Lake National Park
Another spectacular national park is the beautiful Krka waterfall
. Watching the 200 - 400 m wide wall of water rushing down over 17 steps is without a doubt one of the most enthralling experiences in the whole country. You can enter with your rental boat into the bay of Sibenik. From there just navigate upstream until the ACI Marina in Skradin. Just safely moor your boat there and take the hike to the "Skradinski Buk Waterfall".
Krka Waterfalls in Dalmatia near Skradin
The possibilities for water sports in the Adriatic are endless. Choose from kayaking, water ski or wakeboarding, diving, snorkelling, stand up paddling, fishing and many more.
The nightlife of the old town in Hvar is legendary. Many celebrities flock there to go dancing and clubbing.
Luxury yachts in the port of island Hvar
Zrce Beach on the island Pag has earned its reputation as the Croatian Ibiza. There are many excellent clubs with swimming pools, day beds and lots more.
Do I need a skipper license to rent a yacht in Croatian Waters?
In order to sail your own bareboat charter yacht in Croatia
you will require a skipper´s licence or proof that you have sufficient sailing experience. As a rule of thumb, you should consider that you have to show the same license as you need for a boat rental in your own country. If there are any doubts, we can clarify the skipper license requirement before you book your charter. In any case, you will need a VHF license. Exams for this radio license can be also made with local harbour authorities. We can give you the contact so you will be able to make it during a crash course on the spot before your boat rental holiday will start. The alternative is to hire a yacht with a skipper that takes over the navigation of your vessel. A local captain knows the cruising area well. He might take you to places that you else would have missed.
We help you to choose from 1,000 charter yachts in Croatia
, according to your needs. On our website, you will find over 40 boat rental companies. Just use the YachtFinder to get the best offers and compare boat hire rates. To select a quality boat, just browse through latest customer reviews.
What is the right duration of a sailing trip?
If you are planning a real yacht tour in Croatia you should reserve a full week. Croatia yacht charter usually is booked from Saturday afternoon (check-in) to Saturday morning (check-out). Usually you have to bring back the boat on Friday evening. For example in a week, you can explore the Kornati Island from Zadar, Sukosan or Biograd. Alternatively, you can hire a catamaran, sailing yacht or power boat from Trogir or Split for an escape into the south Dalmatian Islands. Brac, Hvar and Vis are just the most known destinations there.
If you want to spend 2 weeks on a boat, than you will be able to make a one-way-trip from Dubrovnik to Zadar to discover the whole range of islands and ports in south and middle Dalmatia. Another itinerary with 14 days would allow your boat crew to visit all coastal highlights between Split and Pula. This would include the Kornati Archipelago, Dugi Otok, Pag and the Kvarner Bay with Mali Losinj, Cres, Rab and Krk.
In case you only want to sniff a bit how it feels to be a yachtie, we recommend you to charter a crewed yacht with skipper for a 1 - 3 days period. You will not need any boating experience nor local area expertise. The captain will take care of everything and bring you to the best places. You can enjoy and relax on the water with your family or friends.
Which is the best boat rental company in Croatia?
Actually, this question cannot be answered so simply because there are not any objective ranking criteria given. Also this would depend very much on the type of boat hire and individual expectations of the charter guests. YachtBooker works since more than 10 years with selected yacht charter operators in important Croatian ports. In the following, we display our long term partners, which have their fleets in online bookable mode on our reservation system. These charter companies proved to be realiable and to offer great services for croatia yacht cruises.
Selected boat rental operators in Croatia by alfabetical order:
- Aba Vela (Split)
- Bruneko (Zadar)
- Candor Charter (Marina Kastela)
- Euromarine (Pula, Biograd, Split, Dubrovnik)
- Euronautic (Biograd, Pirovac)
- First Class Sailing (Pula, KrK, Rogoznica)
- Marina Hramina (Murter)
- Miramo (Split)
- Navigo Yachting - Sukosan
- NCP (Sibenik)
- Orvas Yachting (Split)
- Sunja Yachting (Zadar)
- Suntourist Charter (Zadar)
- Ultra Sailing (Split)
- Veritas Yachting (4 Seasons) - Primosten
When you search for boats with our Booking Engine
you will find many more charter fleets with updated pricing and all details about the boat condition. For those boats, you also can make charter requests online. Do not worry, the availability of the desired yacht will be checked by our sales team.
Is Croatia a good place for a family holiday on a boat?
Croatia is one of the best countries for sailing with a family. We list the reasons why we recommend Croatia as a safe family sailing area:
9 Good Reasons why Croatia is perfect for a vacation with your family:
- The country is very safe to travel.
- Children will love the clear sea.
- There are many safe and good developed marinas.
- The rental prices are moderate, so families can afford.
- The distances between islands are short.
- The sea in the archipelagos is well protected against wind and swell.
- You can reach from many countries with your own car.
- There are dozens of highlights worth to be visited by a family.
- Croatians often speak guest's language.
There are not many countries in the world, which offer such safe and easy sailing conditions for families as Croatia does. A very popular way for families to sail is participating in a flotilla. In the next chapter, we give you more details about which advantages a flotilla sailing provides for you and your family. If you have any questions regarding family sailing in Croatia, just check with our Charter Expert.
One of the best countries to sail with a family
What advantages offers flotilla sailing in Croatia?
What is flotilla sailing? A flotilla is a group of 3 to 20 sailboats that sail together for the duration of the vacation. One vessel is leading, which is usually steered by a sailing instructor with good local knowledge of the cruising area. The other boats of the flotilla are following the track to the destination, which was agreed for the day. Usually the boats sail closely together, so sight and calling contact is kept among the participants. In case problems occur, other sailors or the leading skipper can help quickly. A flotilla anchors together for bathing-activities and during night-time. Often there are common dinners held in restaurants where everybody mixes up at night and can make friendship with other sailors and their families.
A flotilla is perfectly suited for sailors, which do not have much experience. In addition, families can benefit from this holiday concept because kids will meet other kids and can have a great time playing together. This will be very welcome by parents, which normally would have to be the entertainer 24/7. If you are interested in joining a family flotilla, just let us know and we will check which travel dates and destinations are available.
Charter yachts moored in front of Primosten Island
Which are the typical dishes served by Dalmatian chefs?
The Croatian cuisine prepared by cooks is very delicious and reflects the natural resources of the local agriculture and fishing grounds. Meat dishes like Cevapcici, lamb or ham are best accompanied by a class of Croatian Red Wine or a cold national beer. Fresh seafood like mussels, octopus, squids and grilled fish are excellent with a bottle of fruity Croatian White Wine. A very special meal is a "Peka", which can be seafood or meet, which is boiled under an iron bell, which is buried under glowing coal. The Croatian Kitchen is also famous for its stews made of potatoes, vegetables, fish or meat, spiced with herbs from Mediterranean gardens.
A huge plate of grilled Croatian seafood
If you visit one of the historic towns at the coast, you should not miss to enter a traditional tavern or wine cellar. Every region in Croatia has its own grapes and you can spend a whole vacation hopping from one wine tasting to another.
Traditional Dalmatian wine cellar on the island Vis
Overall, this is why sailing in Croatia is so enormously popular. We hope that you now know a few important facts to bear in mind when going on your sailing holiday in this wonderful country. Have a great cruise!