You have already booked your plane ticket and looking for the best way to get around in Croatia?
Have you decided to make the journey with your own car or to rent a car on the spot but intend to visit the islands?
You wish to take the bus or train?
Here is a guide to the best transportation to use during your holidays in Croatia.
You will find everything you need to know about buses, trains and ferry boats as well as schedules and prices.
Many people believe that they will be able to visit Croatia by train, using for example an Interrail pass.
You should know that transportation by train is not very usual in Croatia. Trains are quite slow and Croatian are not used to go far away with them, they prefer to take the bus. They usually use the train to come from the suburb to Zagreb for example.
The two main lines that you can use during your vacation are Zagreb-Rijeka and Zagreb-Split.
For the rest you will have to take the bus!
You can check train schedules and prices on the Croatian Railways website Hrvatske Željeznice.
Transportation by bus
Transportation by bus is really well developped in Croatia. It is very easy to travel by bus since they run at any time of the day even at night, and they will take you all around Croatia, even to the smallest towns and villages.
To travel by bus in Croatia is not very expensive. It is difficult to find prices on internet, so to give you an idea let’s say between 0,07 euros and 0,10 euros per km. Check the distance between towns and villages on Viamichelin website.You should as well know that the price depends of the bus company, so better check while you buy your ticket. You can save some money just by delay your departure by an hour and use a cheaper bus company. As well it is cheaper to buy a round trip ticket with the same company than two tickets separately.
The only problem with buses is that they are crowded during July and August and it will be difficult to find a ticket.
There are many bus companies in Croatia, the most efficient way to check schedules and prices is to visit the main bus stations web site. There is no bus station website for each destination but only for major towns such as Zagreb, Split or Dubrovnik.
Click on the following links to visit the web site of bus station for main cities. Indicate your place of departure, destination and date. You will then get schedules, and sometimes even prices. Sometimes you will have a link to the bus company website and have the possibility to book online.
You can buy a bus ticket either at the bus station or directly on the bus.
Main towns have a bus station and I advise you to buy your ticket there, as soon as you arrive in the town. Villlages do not have any bus station, so in this case you will have to purchase your ticket in the bus. That can be a little bit tricky in July and August when buses are crowded. It can easily happen that the bus that you were supposed to take is crowded and you will not be able to get a seat. So be aware of it and better schedule your departure earlier to have a chance to arrive on time at your destination.
If you enter the bus without any ticket, just seat any wherever you want, the driver will come to you and you will pay your ticket directly to him. There are alway two drivers in Croatian buses. While the first is driving, the second is in charge of selling tickets.
* Prices depend of the bus company, so better check different companies when you buy your ticket.
* If you need a round trip, do the journey with the same bus company will save you some money.
* You will have the possibility to let your luggage in the trunk, but you will have to pay for each piece of luggage, the price is about 15 kn (2 euros) per piece of luggage.
Rent a car
To rent a car in Croatia will give you freedom and flexibility. Unlike public transportation you will avoid waste of time and the crowd.
Having your own car will allow you to discover places most tourists don’t know, off the beaten path. A small restaurant by the sea, a beach, a cove … it’s up to you to choose where to stop.
Transportation by ferry boat
Here are the ferry and boat companies in Croatia:
– Jadrolinija –
The main ferry company in Croatia is the National company Jadrolinija.
You can go to most of the islands with them: you can visit the islands of Krk, Cres, Lošin, Rab, Pag, Zadar’s archipelago, Ugljan, Pašman, Dugi Otok, Šibenik’s archipelago, Trogir’s archipelago, Šolta, Brač, Hvar, Vis, Korčula, Lastovo, the peninsula of Pelješac, Mljet and the Elaphite islands in front of Dubrovnik.
Timetable and prices of the crossings with Jadrolinija.
* Jadrolinija gives the possibility to book tickets on its web site for:
– international crossings between Italy and Croatia.
– ferry crossings.
– crossings for pedestrians by fast boat (they call these speedboats catamarans).
* If you have a car you better be in front of the ferry terminal 2h00 before departure. Indeed a ferry ticket does not assure you a place on the ferry. Be aware that ferries are crowded during summer time and the first person to arrive is the first to enter the ferry.
– LNP – Linijska Nacionalna Plovidba –
LNP offers crossings between:
– Split and the island of Šolta (Split – Rogač)
– Šibenik and the islands of Žirje and Kaprije
Timetable and prices of the crossings with LNP.
– Rapska Plovidba –
Rapska Plovidba is the ferry company of the island of Rab.
Take it to reach the island of Rab (crossing Stinica-Mišnjak) or to go from the island of Rab to the island of Pag.
Timetable and prices of the crossings with Rapska Plovidba.
– Krilo –
Krilo offers crossings by fast boats (catamarans) so only for pedestrians without any vehicle.
– Split – island of Brač (Milna) – island of Hvar – island of Korčula – island of Mljet – Dubrovnik
– Split – island of Hvar – island of Vis
– And for the crossing Mali Lošinj – Ilovik – Susak – Unije – Martinšćica – Cres – Rijeka
Timetable and prices for all the crossings with Krilo.
– G&V Line-
G&V Line proposes crossings for the archipelago of Dubrovnik :
– Dubrovnik – Luka Šipanska – Sobra (Mljet) – Polače (Mljet) – Korčula – Ubli (Lastovo)
G&V Line offers crossings by fast boats (catamarans) so only for pedestrians without any vehicle.
Timetable and prices for all the crossings with G&V Line.