Hiking in Croatia has so much to offer outdoor enthusiasts and nature lovers! Whether you love mountain hikes, coastline trails, forest paths or stunning waterfall hikes, Croatia has it all!
There is an abundance of hiking trails in this European country and its absolute paradise for outdoor enthusiasts.
Here I've listed some of the best hikes in Croatia.
Best Croatia Hikes
1. Vojak Peak Hike
Uckka mountain is located along the Adriatic coast in Istria. The highest peak of this stunning mountain is Vojak peak which stands at 1,401m tall! The stone tower offers incredible panoramic views of the Istrian peninsula, northern Adriatic islands and views all the way to Venice and the Slovenian Alps.
A great place to begin the hike is at Poklon (917m) where you can park your car and head up the well marked path leading to Vojak peak. Both beginners and experienced hikers will love this trail!
It takes about 1,5 hours to reach the top and I would make some time for taking in the views from the summit. It truly is a remarkable viewing spot!
The hike can be done at any time of the year. During the summer season, walking through the forest makes for a pleasant hike in the shade, and during the winter season hiking in the snow is just as enticing.
2. Skradinski Buk Waterfall Loop
Considered a hidden gem in Croatia, the Krka National Park is seriously underrated. It is stunning, not overrun by tourists like other popular parks, and there’s plenty of spots to swim.
This trail through the park is a 2km loop hike ending at the Skradinski Buk waterfall. The path is clearly marked and well maintained. It consists mainly of a wooden walkway that runs through the trees with nice little view points along the way.
You’ll be walking over the water and close to many waterfalls as you head to the main attraction, the cascades of Skardinski Buk. Grab a bite to eat from one of the vendors or bring your picnic basket, you’ll want to spend some time here. It is a truly beautiful hike and we highly recommend it if you are planning a visit to Croatia.
3. Plitvice Lakes Loop Hike
A very popular hiking trail in Plitvice Lakes National Park is the 12km loop hike that features crystal clear lakes and beautiful flowing waterfalls. It can be very crowded, almost any time of the year.
The trail is relatively flat and easy, and truly, pictures do not do this park justice. Swimming is prohibited in the park and you have to remain on the paths to avoid disturbing the natural environment surrounding you.
It’s a beautiful hike through picturesque landscapes and is a must for nature lovers who find themselves in Croatia. Avoiding the crowds is almost impossible but, no matter what, this hike is unforgettable and worth facing the tons of people who flock to the park.
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4. Mount Srd Trail
Hiking to the peak of Mount Srd in Dubrovnik is one of the most popular attractions in Croatia. While some grab the cable car to the top, we prefer to hike! You’ll find the trail-head on Jadranska Cesta Street.
The trail is covered with loose stones so bring good hiking shoes, and you will be exposed to the sun so bring sun protection and plenty of water. Besides this, the views are the perfect reward for this hike. It’s a fairly easy trail and takes just under an hour to reach the top.
Seeing Dubrovnik from the top of Mount Srd is worth the journey. Here you can grab a bite to eat at the Panorama Bar and Restaurant – and you have to check out the civil war museum for a real historical experience.
5. Velebit trail
This trail is located in the largest mountain range in Croatia, Velebit, in the UNESCO Biosphere Reserve, Velebit Nature Park. The hike takes 2 to 4 days, depending on how long you choose to spend in the area. It is by far the most famous hiking trail in the country. This also means, it gets crowded! However, it is an impressive hike and a must do for outdoor adventurers.
The trail is well worn and simple to follow. Along the way there is an abundance of huts for you to stay overnight making it easy to plan your hike. Wild camping is illegal in Croatia but there are plenty of accommodation options along the trail.
The wildlife is incredible in this area and you may even catch a glimpse of a bear! You will also find limestone monuments and stunning valleys, set in some of the most beautiful scenery in Croatia.
6. Odysseus Cave Hike
Located on the stunning Mljet Island in Croatia is the Odysseus Cave Hike. A 3 hour trail over mostly flat and easy terrain. The trail follows the beautiful coastline the entire way and it would be pretty hard to get lost.
The trail is quiet and peaceful, a welcomed change from some of the popular national parks in the country. The hike leads to Odysseus Cave which is a fascinating cliff-side beach where you can take a leap into the sea! You have the choice of a 1m, 7m or whopping 21m jump to the sea below where you can then swim into the cave to explore.
This is a magical ending to the trail and truly something unforgettable. Coupled with a nice cold drink from the concession stand, what better way to cool off after hiking in Croatia?
7. Sveti Jure Peak
Makarska is a seaside town loved by tourists from around the world! It is home to some of the biggest mountains in the country and is perfectly suited for outdoor adventurers.
This hike takes you to the peak of Sveti Jure (St. George), standing 1,762m tall. It takes around 6 hours to complete the trail and is easily accessible straight from the city.
There are no services along the way so make sure you have packed everything you need and have enough water for the whole trail. The climb is steep but worth the amazing views over the Makarska Riviera.
Croatia Hiking FAQ
When is the best time to hike in Croatia?
Hiking in Croatia is best during May and September. May is spring in Croatia and the weather is warm and dry, and the routes are quieter as its just before the tourism season.
Temperatures in the summer during September can reach over 35 degrees Celsius so you’ll need plenty of water and good sun protection during these months. River areas and waterfall trails will be crowded during this time so keep that in mind when planning your trip.
October is another wonderful month for hiking in Croatia but there is a possibility of rain during this time so pack a rainproof jacket. Typically it is a good idea to be prepared for varied weather no matter what the season in Croatia.
What are the best hikes near Split, Croatia?
There are some fantastic hikes near Split, Croatia, that offer stunning views and a chance to explore the natural beauty of the region. Here are some of the best hikes to consider:
- Marjan Hill: This is a popular hiking destination located in the city of Split itself. The hike is not too difficult and can be completed in a few hours. From the top of the hill, you can enjoy breathtaking views of the city and the surrounding sea.
- Biokovo Mountain: If you are looking for a more challenging hike, consider heading to Biokovo Mountain. The mountain is located about an hour's drive from Split and offers some incredible views of the Dalmatian coastline.
- Mosor Mountain: Another great option for a day hike is Mosor Mountain. This mountain range is located just outside of Split and offers some incredible hiking trails that are suitable for all levels of hikers.
- Vranjaca Cave: For a unique hiking experience, consider exploring Vranjaca Cave. This underground cave system is located about 30 minutes from Split and offers a guided tour that takes you through the fascinating geological formations.
- Paklenica National Park: Finally, if you are willing to travel a bit further from Split, consider visiting Paklenica National Park. This park is located about 2 hours north of Split and offers some incredible hiking trails that take you through the stunning Velebit mountain range.