Croatia’s reputation as an up and coming honeymoon destination with something for everyone certainly isn’t hyperbole. Yep, the country has it all; idyllic beaches with crystal clear waters, a remarkable history with ancient architecture to match, delicious cuisine and wonderful wines. Whilst you could have a great holiday focused solely on one region in this diverse country, we’d recommend a bit of exploring, to truly get underneath the skin of the place and experience it at its finest. So, for newlyweds looking to experience the best the country has to offer, here’s our 5 IDEAL things to do on your Croatia honeymoon.
CHASE SUNSETS IN DUBROVNIK
Dubrovnik is a place that oozes romance. Steal kisses in the alleyways and cuddle in cosy local taverns. Explore the cobblestoned streets and Botanic Gardens hand in hand. Rent out a kayak or take the ten-minute boat ride to the Lokrum, a picturesque island paradise. Spend the afternoon lazing in the freshwater lake. Yep, Dubrovnik has the backdrop to frame a thousand romantic cliches.
What’s more, the city is home to countless places to watch the sunset. To see perhaps the best in the city, take the cable car to Mount Srd for a bird’s eye view across the Old Town and across the Adriatic Sea. Follow this up with a glass of wine at Panorama restaurant and watch everything below bathed in a hazy pink glow. Follow this up with a trip to Dubrovnik’s famous (and famously hard to find) Buža bar (meaning hole-in the wall), which is hidden under the ancient city walls; you literally have to go through a hole in the wall to find this bar perched on the cliffside right above the sea. One of the most romantic ways in the world to watch the sun go down, we think.
A romantic trip to Croatia wouldn’t be complete without a visit to Hvar, Queen of the Croation Dalmatian islands. The ferry from Dubrovnik to Hvar takes around three hours and you’ll be rewarded with the ideal honeymoon island, a place which mixes serene beauty and sophistication with a vibrant, revelrous nightlife.
Hvar is the island of Croation wine; the strong wind and sun combining for ideal grape growing conditions and the production of quality wine. The island is home to the oldest Plavac Mali (an indigenous grape to the dalmatian region) vineyard in the country, perfect for raising a glass to your life as newlyweds on a wine tasting tour.
Hvar is equally famous for its lavender, an aphrodisiac scent that is thought to kindle passions. Indeed, many hotels in the area offer couples massages using lavender oil. You can also find lavender flavoured ice cream pretty much everywhere on the island, its floral and herbaceous flavour just lovely when the weather is heating up. To see the purple fields for yourself, rent a scooter and follow the island’s lavender scented trails. And don’t forget to pick up a jar of lavender infused honey as a memento of your honeymoon – and a reminder of that massage, we think!
SMOOCH IN SPLIT
No doubt whilst you’re on your honeymoon, you’ll find yourself in Split – it’s the logical gateway to many of Croatian islands, after all. Best, then, to make the most out of your time here. Luckily, it’s another one of those picturesque places in this part of the world which is effortlessly, innately romantic. The promenade on Split Riva, lined with palm trees and benches, is just perfect for a lover’s stroll. Head here at sunset, as the rich golden rays hit the bay, order a carafe of wine and let the evening unfold. Or, bring a blanket and a bottle of wine and head to Matejuška, towards the west of the Riva where young lovers and groups of friends come to court and mingle. Find a spot on the wall and enjoy the vibe. If you don’t want the evening to end and are after somewhere to dance, you’ll find a row of late-opening bars along the Bačvice beachside.
For more things to do in Split, check out our 5 IDEAL travel tips for your holiday in Split, Croatia here.
TAKE A ROMANTIC CRUISE
Drawing up an itinerary, plotting each leg of the journey, and booking all the hotels and restaurants along the way is undoubtedly a wonderful way to explore Croatia. But after all the wedding planning and stress of the last few months, it might be nice to let someone else do the planning for you. With that in mind, why not embark on an enchanting cruise along the Dalmatian coast, regularly named as Europe’s most beautiful shoreline. Since all of the major must-sees of the country overlook the glittering, shimmering Adriatic, a Croatian honeymoon cruise, taking in 1800km of coastline, could be just the ticket.
SAIL INTO THE SUNSET
If you’re feeling a little more flash and want a lot more privacy from your honeymoon, then why not consider chartering a private yacht to take you around the Adriatic coast? In doing so, you can visit secluded coves and remote beaches when you want to be alone, away from prying eyes. The chance to wake up every morning in a different bay, with the autonomy to choose your next move, anchoring up somewhere when the only boat is yours, is priceless we think.
The most popular trip is to sail between Split and Dubrovnik, or vice versa, though its popularity may also mean it’s a crowded one. Stopping off at a few ports along the way, this well travelled route will take you three or four days. Or, you could opt for a path a little less well-trodden, and go from Zadar in the north all the way south to Kotor, in Montenegro. This should take two weeks or so, and is certainly a more adventurous way to do things. And that’s the beauty of a chartered yacht; the choice is very much yours.