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Destination Focus: From Peaks to Beach in Croatia

By Anna Solomon

If for you, as with many yachters, the summer months herald the irresistible call of the Mediterranean, why not consider Croatia? Chartering this Adriatic paradise can make summer cruising dreams of emerald waters shadowed by ancient cities a reality. M/Y The Wellesley (with TWW Yachting), Meamina (with Burgess) and Rosehearty (with Perini Navi USA), to name a few, will soon be heading to this mesmerising part of the world.

Croatia’s island-speckled coastline makes it the perfect destination to explore by superyacht. Here, the sea sparkles with jewel-like intensity under the Mediterranean sun, lapping at secluded pockets of beach. The best reside along Makarska Riviera, where you will find miles of sequestered coast lined with fig trees and olive groves.

Rocky seabeds provide astounding underwater visibility, and has made the region famous for astounding ‘in situ’ (on site) museums, including ancient shipwrecks such as Baron Gautsch off the coast of Rovinj, or Taranto near Dubrovnik. Not to be outdone, natural aquatic splendours include Te Vega Sea Lake, which is reachable only by underwater tunnel, and Bisevo Cave near the island of Vis, whose bright blue hue has to be seen to be believed. 

Croatia is the ideal nautical destination, with the discovery of lavender-scented bays and olive grove-studded islets easily accessible by superyacht, not to mention the irresistible allure of soaking in the Adriatic.

Dragging your gaze from the green-tinged ocean, mainland Croatia is a fortress of natural and man-made wonders. The looming Dinaric Mountain Range hugs the majority of the coastline, carving out a landscape of contorted peaks, caverns and canyons from its limestone karst.

Inland, sublime peaks give way to rolling countryside. Vineyards criss-cross Dingač, Postup and Komarna, accompanied by wine cellars offering a plurality of gorgeous vintages from indigenous grape varieties.

And the country’s anthropological wonders are no less impressive. Croatia’s cities are crumbling mazes of ancient architecture that groan with historical ambience. Dubrovnik Old Town’s 16th century walls and the remains of Diocletian’s Palace in Split are particularly extraordinary.

Meanwhile, life on Croatian islands harkens back to a bygone era, with winding roads flanked by grazing livestock and elders playing ‘bocce’. Others exist at an accelerated pace of life, playing host to legendary 24-hour parties. The island of Brač is famed for its white stone topology and sumptuous delicacies of olive oil, sheep cheese and mandarins, whilst the sealocked Hvar is a popular playground for the rich and famous.

Between the beautiful beaches of Dalmatia, the fantastic food of Istria and the cruising idyll of the Adriatic, Croatia is a destination that will stay with you long after the Mediterranean summer ends.

By Anna Solomon