Don't be fooled by this town's ancient looks. Inside the medieval walls you'll find a thriving community of people who know how to enjoy life in this wonderful location on the Adriatic Sea shore.
In central Dalmatia, at the mouth of the Krka river, right where it meets the Adriatic, lies the town of Sibenik. Like most of the other cities along the coast, it has a long history, actually one of the oldest settlements of the eastern Adriatic. Though not as popular as Split or Dubrovnik, Sibenik is still very popular among the boatmen.
80km from Split, Sibenik is located in a deep bay which is protected from the waters of the Adriatic. Unlike some of the other resorts in this part of the country, here you’ll find a lively and youthful atmosphere, favorable for regulars. The modern blends in perfectly with the old as the new architecture seems to complement the ancient buildings. Travel & Arrival
Unless you’re thinking of travelling the 60km from Split airport to Sibenik, the best way to get in remains by car or bus, along the A1 highway running from Zagreb to Split. There is also an older, but more scenic route along the coast which the adventurer can take, from the southeast of Zadar.
The other way to get in would have to be by water, using one of the ferry services. There are trips three times a week made from Ancona in Italy via Zadar. Ferries also commute between Kaprije, Zirje, Zlarin, Prvic and Vodice island, which makes the area easier to explore by groups. Avant & Apres Sail
One of liveliest places in Croatia at the time of its Rennaisance, Sibenik has today something to show for that period of cultural expansion, in the form of the famous St. James cathedral, the fortifications of the old town and some of the other churches around the city center. When you’re done giving the main streets a once over, make sure you head out to the beautiful Krka National Park, famous for its seven waterfalls, as well as the Kornati Archipelago, a paradise for enthusiasts.
The vast majority of food venues here serve that omnipresent dish on all Mediterranean shores – the pizza, but also the grilled fish dishes, specific to the Dalmatian cuisine. Add to that pasta and olive oil, and you’ll understand the influence the ancient sailors coming from Italy had on the locals. The native wines are also rather famous for their body and aroma. For a complete experience, take your hungry crew to the Dolac area which is something like a food court.
That youthful atmosphere comes in very handy come night time, as the bars and clubs open up to the masses of people looking for a good time. Young or old, they all flock to the city’s hotspots along the very narrow streets where barely two tables can lay side by side. On the other hand, Sibenik is home to one of the largest entertainment centers this side of the Adriatic, called Aurora, which can hold up to 3000 people. Events & Actions
The biggest annual event in Sibenik has to be the international Children’s Festival happening at the end of June. On the day of the town’s patron saint, St. Michael, there is a fair during which there are numerous food servings and musical events. For the lovers, Sibenik has an annual cruiser regatta, going on at the beginning of December.
One-Week Sailing Itinerary from Šibenik, Croatia through the Kornati Islands
Day 1: Šibenik to Skradin
Embark on your yacht charter adventure on Saturday evening from the lively port of Šibenik. Set sail towards Skradin, located about 10 nautical miles away. As you cruise along the stunning Croatian coastline, admire the crystal-clear Adriatic Sea. Upon arrival in Skradin, find a cozy spot in the marina, and indulge in some local delicacies at a nearby waterfront restaurant.
Day 2: Skradin to Murter Island
Say goodbye to Skradin and set sail for Murter Island, approximately 20 nautical miles away. En route, drop anchor at the breathtaking Zlarin Island for a refreshing swim in its turquoise waters and a leisurely lunch at a local seafood tavern. Continue to Murter Island and moor your yacht charter in the charming Betina Marina. Soak in the island's laid-back atmosphere and explore its scenic beauty.
Day 3: Murter Island to Žut Island (Kornati Islands)
Wave farewell to Murter Island and embark on a 25-nautical-mile journey to the serene island of Žut, part of the mesmerizing Kornati archipelago. Along the way, make a pit stop at the tranquil Levrnaka Island for a swim and some sunbathing on its secluded beach. Upon arrival at Žut, find a peaceful anchorage in one of the many idyllic bays, and enjoy a rejuvenating swim in the crystal-clear waters.
Day 4: Žut Island to Kornat Island
Set sail from Žut and head towards Kornat Island, the largest island in the Kornati archipelago, approximately 10 nautical miles away. Along the way, take a break at the awe-inspiring Opat Bay, an ideal spot for snorkeling among the vibrant marine life. Once you reach Kornat Island, secure your yacht charter in the pristine Vrulje Bay, and explore the island's rugged landscapes and hidden coves.
Day 5: Kornat Island to Telascica Nature Park (Dugi Otok)
Leave Kornat Island behind and set sail for the enchanting Dugi Otok, home to the stunning Telascica Nature Park, about 20 nautical miles away. En route, take a break at the picturesque Katina Island for a relaxing swim in its crystal-clear waters. Continue to Telascica Nature Park and find a perfect anchorage spot to immerse yourself in the park's breathtaking bays, rugged cliffs, and pristine environment.
Day 6: Telascica Nature Park to Zlarin Island
Depart from Telascica Nature Park and navigate towards Zlarin Island, located approximately 30 nautical miles away. On the way, stop at the spectacular Kaprije Island for a swim in its azure waters and a taste of the island's local cuisine. Upon arrival at Zlarin Island, secure your yacht charter in the peaceful harbor, and explore the island's lush forests, quaint village, and local coral workshops.
Day 7: Zlarin Island to Šibenik
On the final day of your yacht charter adventure, set sail from Zlarin Island and make your way back to Šibenik, a journey of approximately 15 nautical miles. Before returning to your starting point, take the time to explore the serene Prvić Island, where you can enjoy a last swim or sunbathing session in the idyllic surroundings of one of its picturesque bays.
Arrive back in Šibenik on Friday evening, ready to return your yacht charter to the base. As you disembark, bid farewell to your yacht and crew, taking with you unforgettable memories of your Kornati Islands sailing adventure.
|Day||From||To||Distance (Nautical Miles)|
|3||Murter Island||Žut Island (Kornati Islands)||25|
|4||Žut Island||Kornat Island||10|
|5||Kornat Island||Telascica Nature Park (Dugi Otok)||20|
|6||Telascica Nature Park||Zlarin Island||30|
What are some highlights of the sailing destination around Šibenik in Croatia?
Šibenik, a historic city on the Dalmatian coast, is an excellent starting point for exploring the surrounding archipelago, which includes over 240 islands and reefs. The Krka National Park, with its beautiful waterfalls, and Kornati National Park, a collection of stunning islands, are among the top sailing highlights. The city of Šibenik itself is home to the UNESCO World Heritage site, St. James Cathedral.
What can sailors expect from the Marina Mandalina?
Šibenik has world-class marinas, providing excellent facilities for sailors. Mandalina Marina is one of Croatia's most prestigious marinas, featuring high-quality services, and it's the only marina in Croatia with a 5-anchor rating. The marina offers amenities such as a maintenance area, supermarkets, bars, and restaurants. Marina Frapa in nearby Rogoznica, and ACI Marina Šibenik, located in the bay of Mandalina, are also great options for sailors.
What are some of the best anchor bays around Šibenik?
There are plenty of great anchor bays around Šibenik. Stupica Bay on Zirje Island is a popular choice for its shelter and natural beauty. The secluded Lovišća Bay on Kaprije Island is another favorite, providing peace and tranquility. Also, the Bay of Minerska on the island of Drvenik Veli offers beautiful waters and is a great place to relax and take a swim.
Are there unique gastronomic experiences sailors can enjoy nearby?
Šibenik is a gastronomic delight, known for its Dalmatian cuisine, especially fresh seafood dishes. The local mussels are a must-try! Be sure to try the traditional Dalmatian dish "peka," a mix of vegetables and meat or seafood cooked under a bell-like lid. Wash it all down with a glass of locally produced Babić wine. Numerous konobas (traditional restaurants) are accessible by sea, offering fresh Mediterranean cuisine with an amazing sea view.
What are some must-do activities for sailors?
Apart from sailing to the beautiful islands and enjoying the pristine beaches, sailors should explore the Krka National Park and take a dip in the Krka river. History buffs will enjoy visiting the Cathedral of St. James in Šibenik and the fortresses of St. Michael, St. Nicholas, St. John and Barone. Snorkeling, diving, fishing, and wine tasting are also popular activities.
What is the best time to sail in Middle-Dalmatia?
The best time to sail in Šibenik is from April to October. The weather during this time is generally warm and sunny, with July and August being the hottest months. For those who prefer a quieter sailing experience, May, June, and September are ideal as they are less crowded but the weather is still pleasant for sailing and swimming.
How diverse is the marine life at the Croatian Coast?
Marine life around Šibenik is abundant and diverse, which makes it a great location for those interested in snorkeling or diving. You can expect to see a wide variety of fish species, seahorses, sea urchins, shellfish, and occasionally dolphins. The coral reefs and underwater caves in the surrounding waters are a spectacular sight.
What are some must-visit islands when sailing around Šibenik?
Prvić, Zlarin, and Krapanj are charming and peaceful islands that are a must-visit for those who enjoy traditional Croatian life. Zlarin is particularly known for its coral tradition, while Krapanj is known for sea sponges. Obonjan island offers an unique experience with its mix of relaxation, social activities and live music events. Lastly, Kaprije and Žirje are great options for those seeking solitude and beautiful anchor bays.