Croatia is a Central European and Mediterranean country and has a long maritime border with Italy in the Adriatic Sea. Croatia has an amazing 5,835km of coastline, 4,057km of which belongs to islands, cliffs and reefs. Croatia’s coast is speckled with a multitude of magnificent islands. There’s an enormous variety both in size and character – some are verdant, others arid, some are deserted, while others host historic towns. There are 1,185 islands in the Adriatic, but only about 50 are populated. The largest island is Krk which has a land area of 462 square km, whilst the country’s other well known islands include Hvar, Brac, Korcula and Pag.
Croatia's extraordinary island-speckled coastline is indisputably its main attraction. The first thing that strikes you is the clarity of the water. When it's set against a long dazzling stretches of white pebbly and sandy beaches, it sparkles with a jewel-like intensity in shades of emerald and sapphire.
Shift your gaze for just a moment from the glittering waters, and chances are an almighty mountain will loom into view. The Dinaric Alps, which stretch all the way from Italy to Albania, hug much of the coast. The limestone karst has bequeathed a wonderland of craggy peaks, caverns, river canyons, waterfalls and ridiculously picturesque lakes. Head further inland and things flatten out again into rolling farmland.
Sharing food and drink plays a big part in the culture here, which speaks both to the nature of Croatian hospitality and to the quality of local produce. Simple home-style cooking is a feature of family-run taverns, but increasingly a new breed of chefs are bringing a more adventurous approach to the table. Meanwhile, Croatian cheeses, wines and olive oils are making their mark on the world stage, garnering top awards.