We recommend a Croatia Road Trip 10 days itinerary to see the main attractions the country has to offer.
Croatia is a country that can be easily traveled by car as the distances between the different tourist attractions are short and the roads are in good condition.
In this Croatia Road Trip 10 days itinerary that we recommend you will visit charming mountain villages, Roman vestiges, islands and paradisiacal beaches and cities whose historic center by the sea will surely leave you with your mouth open. Let’s discover them!
🚗 Search here for car rentals in Croatia.
📜 TABLE OF CONTENTS
Map of the Croatia Road Trip 10 days itinerary
Day 1 Istrian Peninsula: Motovun, Rovinj, Pula and Opatija
The Istrian Peninsula is the westernmost part of Croatia bordering Slovenia and is located close to Trieste. The distances between cities and towns are short, so if you go by car you can see several places in the same day.
An itinerary on the Istrian peninsula should not miss the visit to Rovinj with its beautiful historic center by the sea and the narrow cobbled and pedestrianized streets, the Roman vestiges of the city of Pula where the amphitheater, one of the best preserved in the world, stands out, and the villages that seem to hang from the mountain, such as Motovun.
🔝 Check out these recommendations on things to do in the Istria peninsula.
To end the day, you can spend the night in the town of Opatija, a summer village of great importance at the time of the Austro-Hungarian Empire.
Total distance of day 1: 190 kilometers (from Motovun to Opatija via Rovinj and Pula).
🏨 Find here the best best hotels in Opatija or Rijeka.
Day 2: Croatia Road Trip 10 days itinerary, Krk island
Not as touristy as the famous islands of Brac or Hvar, the island of Krk offers beautiful beaches and not so crowded, especially in summer, along with fishing villages and historical relics such as the castle of Frankopan.
In our opinion it is worth spending the whole day to walk around the island, community with the mainland by a bridge, and go stopping with the car on the beaches and villages.
To stay there are places for all tastes, perhaps it is convenient during the day and in the afternoon to go to the city of Krk to stay there and explore its historic center.
Total distance of day 1: 65 kilometers (from Opatija to Krk)
🏨 Find here the best best hotels on the island of Krk.
Day 3: Plitvice lakes
A visit to the Plitvice Lakes, a true paradise, is a must on a driving tour in Croatia. It is made up of 16 lakes at different heights with water so crystalline that fish and tree branches fallen to the bottom of the water are perfectly visible.
There are different entrances for access and parking for cars. In addition, the place has restaurants, and even a train and boat to transport you between the lakes. During the walk you will surely be dazzled by the waterfalls and the turquoise color of the water.
🔝 Check out these recommendations for planning a visit to Plitvice Lakes.
Touring the park takes time, probably at least half a day, so you may even want to spend the night inside the park. There are three somewhat expensive hotels inside the site or you can sleep in some lodging in the surrounding area.
Total distance of day 3: 175 km (from Krk to Plitvice)
🏨 Find here the best best hotels in Plitvice Lakes.
Day 4: Croatia Road Trip 10 days itinerary, visit Zadar
Zadar can be perfectly covered in one day. In its historic center, practically surrounded by water in its entirety, are all the attractions to see, among which stand out the church of San Donato along with the bell tower and the promenade.
In addition, there are two other places that attract a lot of people, especially during sunset. One is the Organ of the Sea, a series of steps built into the shore that emit sounds like an organ when the waves crash against the structure.
🔝 Check out these recommendations on things to do in Zadar in one day.
The other is the Sun Salutation, some 300 glass plates that lie on the ground and are illuminated. From here you can enjoy magnificent sunsets over the sea.
Total distance of day 4: 133 km (from Plitvice to Zadar)
🏨 Find here the best best hotels in Zadar.
Day 5 and 6: Sibenik, Trogir and Split
The day begins with a stop in Sibenik, a town not as touristy as Split or Trogir but no less beautiful. The historic center is completely pedestrianized with narrow streets, which adds a lot of charm. Here you have to visit the cathedral of St. Jacob and at the top the fortress of St. Michael, with beautiful views of the sea.
On the way to Split another mandatory stop is in Trogir, with its small historic center and buildings such as the cathedral of St. Lawrence of the thirteenth century and the small fortress of Camarlengo of the fifteenth century. Here you can eat or drink something in the lively terraces overlooking the promenade.
At the end of day 5 we recommend sleeping in Split, so that early the next morning you can explore the charms of the city and climb the hill at sunset to see the city and the sea from above. Split is one of the most beautiful cities in Croatia, where the Diocletian’s Palace built in the 3rd century stands out as its main attraction.
🔝 Check out these recommendations on things to do in and around Split.
In addition, in Split you should sit on one of the terraces of the restaurants and bars on the promenade in the evening, a very busy area especially in summer. And don’t forget the sunsets at Marjan, the park on the hill where you can also go hiking.
Total distance of day 5 and 6: 160 km (from Zadar to Split)
🏨 Do you want to look for other options? Find here the best best hotels in Split.
Day 7 and 8: Island of Brac
In the car route through Croatia in 10 days could not miss the islands, one of the main attractions of the country, especially in the summer. From Split you have the option to take a ferry to the island of Brac, to the island of Hvar, or to the more distant Korcula or Vis.
If you want tranquility and not so much travel the best thing to do is to visit the island of Brac. The ferry from Split arrives in Supetar, the capital of the island. From here you can perfectly cover in two days the most touristic places of the archipelago, such as the paradisiacal Zlatni Rat beach with its wide sandy beach and the Vidova Gora mountain of almost 800 meters high with its majestic views of the sea.
Finally, the seaside village of Bol also deserves a stop along the way next to Supetar, the largest town on the island.
📷 Check out these tours to do from Split, including visiting the island of Brac.
🏨 Find here the best best hotels on the island of Brac.
Day 9: Mostar
On the way between Split and Dubrovnik you have to cross the border and pass for a few kilometers through Bosnia Herzegovina. We recommend a short detour from the direct route between the two cities to visit Mostar.
This city has a lot of history since it was part of theAustro-Hungarian Empire and in the famous war of Yugoslavia was besieged by the Serbs and subjected to permanent bombardment, leaving traces that today can be seen on the facade of some buildings.
Mostar’s charm lies in the Old Bridge across the Neretva River, the cobblestone streets in the center with handicraft stores and the Muslim culture visible in the mosques and the small bazaar.
Total distance for day 9: 170 kilometers (from Split to Mostar)
🏨 Find here the best best hotels in Mostar.
Day 10: Dubrovnik, a must on a driving tour of Croatia
We finish our driving tour in Croatia in the most renowned city of the country. Dubrovnik, or really the historic center of Dubrovnik, is an ancient walled city facing the sea, where inside are hidden cobbled pedestrian streets, churches and historic buildings.
Dubrovnik can be toured in a full day, starting with a walk along the streets inside the city walls, a visit to the market with fruit and vegetable stalls in the main square and a climb up the walls to see the center from above.
🔝 Check out these recommendations on thigns to do in Dubrovnik in one day.
At sunset, we recommend climbing the stairs to reach the viewpoint outside the walls. There is a small terrace to contemplate the views of the entire historic center of Dubrovnik, the city wall and the sea, which will leave you in awe.
Total distance for day 10: 140 km (from Mostar to Dubrovnik)
📷 Check out these tours in Dubrovnik.
🏨 Find here the best best hotels in Dubrovnik.
Buy your travel insurance and travel safe!
🚑 Take a look at these tips for choosing the best travel insurance (updated to 2023 and with juicy discounts) for the type of traveller you are, and they will also help you clear up the most common doubts. Travel safe!
Discounts and useful resources to save on your trip
- Cheap flights with Skyscanner
- Rent a car with Auto Europe
- Interrail Pass
- Eurail Pass
- Train Tickets with OMIO
- Bus tickets with OMIO
- Ferry tickets with OMIO
- Asia tickets with 12Go
Activities and Tours
– Comparison of Travel Insurance 2023 –
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- Things to Do in Istria, the Best Road Trip
- Things to Do in Zadar in One Day, All Info
- Visiting Plitvice Lakes, a Complete Guide
- Where to Stay In Dubrovnik, Best Hotels and Areas
- Where to Stay In Split, the Best Areas
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