Split is a fortress-like town on the Dalmatian Coast in Croatia. It is popular for its rich history, beautiful beaches, and proximity to some of the most gorgeous islands in the country. Its ports and docks are the gateway to the best beaches in the Dalmatian region. If you are planning to go island hopping through the Split islands, you have come to the right place. In this guide, you will learn all about the best Croatian islands near Split that you should visit.
➳ Read More: The best things to see in Split
The best Croatian Islands near Split
- Distance from Split: Approximately 34 kilometers (21 miles)
- Travel time from Split: About 1 hour and 40 minutes
- Why you should visit: Golden Horn Beach, Vidova Gora, and Pustinja Blaca
Brac is one of the most beautiful islands in Central Dalmatia. It is also one of the closest islands to Split. Tourists love to visit Brac because of its gorgeous beaches, like Golden Horn, a white-sand beach that is a popular spot for windsurfing and boating. If you have a few hours in Brac, you should hike to Vidova gora, the highest point on the island that offers a breathtaking view of the Adriatic Sea. Or, if you want to learn a little bit of history, head to Pustinja Blanca, a historic 16th-century monastery turned museum that was built into a cliff.
- Distance from Split: Approximately 62 kilometers (38.5 miles)
- Travel time from Split: About 1 hour and 35 minutes
- Why you should visit: St. Stephen’s Square, Spanjola Fortress, and Tvrdalj Castle
Hvar is an island in the Adriatic Sea and is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the region. You will find yachts docked in the port and resort town of the same name with an average of 20,000 people visit the island every day during peak season. When in Hvar, there are three stops you should not miss: St. Stephen’s Square, the Spanjola Fortress, and Tvrdalj Castle.
St. Stephen’s Square was named after the 15th-century cathedral in its heart and is home to the island’s best cafés, restaurants, and shops. Meanwhile, the Spanjola Fortress is a hilltop fortress that offers a great view of the town and the sea. Here, you will find a museum that contains mementos from centuries past. Lastly, Tvrdalj Castle, a historic structure in Stari Grad, is popular for inscriptions that you will find all over the place. For example, on the front of the building, you will find the phrase “Omnium Conditori” which translates to “creator of all things” in English.
- Distance from Split: Approximately 128 kilometers (79.5 miles)
- Travel time from Split: About 4 hours and 10 minutes
- Why you should visit: Beach hopping, Korcula Old Town, and house of Marco Polo
Korcula is the second most populous island in the Adriatic Sea, so there is plenty of activity on the island. While Korcula has a lot of pristine beaches that make it popular for beach hoppers, it is also the perfect destination for those who want to learn about and experience the local culture. If you are heading to Korcula, make sure to stop by the Old Town to see the island’s historic buildings, eat at authentic Croatian restaurants, and buy souvenirs from the shops. You can also find the alleged birth home of Marco Polo on the island.
- Distance from Split: Approximately 56.5 kilometers (35 miles)
- Travel time from Split: About 2 hours and 45 minutes
- Why you should visit: Blue Cave, Stiniva Beach, and Tito’s Cave
Without a doubt, Vis is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Croatia. It is the home of the Blue Cave, a sea cave that glows with blue light when the sunlight passes through the clear blue waters of the Adriatic Sea and bounces off its white limestone walls. Stiniva Beach is a famous spot among tourists; it is a sheltered beach cove tucked between a canyon. For a little bit of a historical adventure, you should also see Tito’s Cave, a cave used by the Yugoslav revolutionary Josip Broz Tito during the Second World War.
- Distance from Split: Approximately 20 kilometers (12 miles)
- Travel time from Split: About 1 hour and 30 minutes
- Why you should visit: Maslinica, Rogac, and Stomorska
The last island on this list is Solta, an island of scenic seaside resort towns. It is not as busy as the other islands on this list and is the perfect getaway spot for those who want a quiet and relaxing vacation. When in Solta, you should stay in Maslinica, Rogac, or Stomorska. There are beautiful beaches and accommodation options in these towns. You can also rent a yacht and dock by one of their marinas if you want to stay on the water during your vacation.
For a day of island hopping, you can rent a boat, start at Split, and then head to the islands in this guide as they are listed. Alternatively, you can join a tour that can take you to a few of these islands during your trip.
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