Getting around in Croatia

If you are planning a family multi activity holiday in Croatia it’s good to get a feel for the various transport options. From ferries, to buses and from hire cars to local taxis; they all play a part in making your time in Croatia a successful one.

Many guests who book a family adventure in Croatia with us; also opt to do either a pre or post stay. In this situation please do contact us and we will always give you sensible local advice in regards to the most suitable transport options for your family.

In the meantime please do check out this blog article to give you the inside track into getting around our beautiful country.

Self driving gives you the freedom to see more. But ask our travel managers if yoou think its necessary for your trip.

Do I need a hire car when in Croatia?

If you are going to stay in big cities like Zagreb, Zadar, Split, Dubrovnik or Pula and you are going to  stay there for the duration of your holiday there is no need for you to rent a car. Public transport, local taxi services and Uber are all available to you in bigger cities so there is really no need for you to rent a car, plus good luck with finding a parking place in the top summer season.

However if you plan to explore further a field then car rental is a wise thing to do. In this blog we will try to give you all the necessery information about all means of transport in Split & beyond. So, here we go.

What are the best taxi companies in Split?

Split is the second biggest town in Croatia so you won’t have problems with getting a taxi any time; day or night. Of course one of the best solutions is Uber or you can try a taxi company called Cammeo. Cammeo has very good and reasonable prices and you can also download their app and use it during your stay. (link to download the app ) .

Uber has been present in Split for quite some time now and you can find fares at competitive prices depending on the time of day. When the demand is higher for Uber so is the price, and in these times it is often better to use the local taxi companies.

If you are booking a family activity week in Croatia with us and prefer a more personal approach for your pre or post stay you can use the services of our local drivers no problem. For Brač Island there aren’t that many options. Taxi Kacavida is one of the best on the island as well as Taxi Karoca. We alos have local partners we can put you in touch with.

What about  public transport in Split and on Brač island?

Public transport on Brač Island exists but isn’t as frequent as on the coast so for this destination we would suggest using taxi services from Supetar as its one of the largest towns on Brac and has more services and more frequest bus routes running through it.

Supetar is the main city on the island and all the bus lines go through Supetar’s main bus terminal which is handled by the bus company called Arriva.

( link to the website where you can check the bus timetable and book your tickets )

Public transport in Split is very good indeed. It has plenty of bus lines running throughout the city as well as intercity lines to Omiš, Trogir and to Podstrana where one of our family adventure holidays bases operates from.

If you are doing our Podstrana activity program then for your info the bus station for ‘Split’ from Podstrana is next to the pizzeria ‘Fabio’ and the bus lines number 60, 30 and a private bus operator Dalmatinac stop to pick up the passengers on that station and take you into Split. Tickets for both the companies are between 10HRK and 22HRK depending on which zone you are leaving and where you are going.

(Here is the link to the web site of Promet Split  )

In the ferry harbour in Split you can also find the international bus station so if you are going to travel somewhere further away from Split this is where you need to go. Dubrovnik, Zagreb, Ljubljana, Mostar and many other famous balkan cities are connected from here. On this link you can find the web site for the international bus station in Split and you can book your tickets online

On the same location, you can also find the shuttle bus to the airport at a very reasonable price, only 33 HRK for a transfer.

how to take ferry in croatia

What about Ferries and catamarans to Croatias islands?

The official carrier between the islands is a company called Jadrolinija and in the summertime the number of ferry and catamaran lines increases a lot as the number of passengers to the islands increase exponentially.

The ferry harbour in Split is impossible to miss and you won’t have any problems finding the main building where you can buy the tickets for the islands (FYI – the main building is across from Split bus station). Its always busy in summer so please do give your self ample time.

Our main destination for our family island adventure holidays is the gorgeous island of Brač and the tickets for Supetar cost cc.50 HRK for adults and half the price for kids 3-12 years of age. If you are going to travel with a rent-a-car across then you will pay cc.200 HRK for a small car.

Over here you can find the link to Jadrolinija web site where you can check the timetable for the ferries

Prices for the catamarans are a little bit higher but in general, they are worth taking if you are travelling to the islands that are located further away e.g Hvar; Korcula; Vis etc…

Besides Jadrolinija you can also use Krilo Jet and Kapetan Luka for catamaran services. From this year there is also a brand new line that connects Split airport with the centre of Split, Bol (Brač) and Stari Grad (Hvar) and the price is 199 HRK for one way and 299 HRK return subject to availability.

When to rent a car in Croatia?

This is a great question that demands a little bit longer answer.

Every person is different and everyone likes different things, including holidays. Someone likes to lay on the beach all the time and someone cant be in one place not even for a day. If you belong in the second category than we warmly recommend to rent a car in Croatia because there are so many beautiful things to see; and renting a car is a good way to see all the gorgeous locations in the country, especially Croatias stunning national parks.

If you plan to stay in a smaller more remote town we also advise you to rent a car not just to go on day trips from your base but also to make sure you can get access to all the essentials. Smaller villages often don’t have pharmacies or big supermarkets and other things you might find useful; so a car might come in handy.

The Hinterland of Dalmatia; small costal towns, islands and the Istrian region are perfect places in Croatia to rent a car and explore the local area. If you are planing to do that our advice is to book as early as possible because prices can go up as the summer approaches, tourist season in Croatia is quite seasonal (slowly changing especially with Christmas market in Zagreb) but generally if you book early you will get better value for your money. All the big car hire players operate here: Avis, Hertz, Europcar, Budget etc…

Road conditions in Croatia?

Road conditions in Croatia are excellent, everything is quite new and modern, especially the new motorway that goes from Zagreb across to Split and down to city of Ploče. Ploče is the most southerly point in Croatia where the motorway began.

From Ploče to Dubrovnik you have additional 100km and you have to cross the border with Bosnia and Herzegovinia this is the reason why the motorway didn’t go all the way to Dubrovnik. This year they started to build a bridge across to Peljesac peninsula and like this in a few years Croatia will be completely connected.

One of the most beautiful roads in Croatia is the Adriatic coastal road often voted among the most beautiful scenic roads in the world. Altough the highway is a fast way to get to a destination often these small village roads represent a country in the best way and like this you will see the magic unspoiled areas.

Travelling through the wine roads of Istria is a treat; as is exploring the less visited hinterland regions. So many things to explore and so little time. Make sure to plan your stay well and do ask us for any local advice or support.

Main roads in Croatia are:

A1 highway  Zagreb-Split-Ploče

A2 highway Zagreb-Macelj(Slovenia)

A3Bregana(Slovenia)-Zagreb-Lipovac(border with Serbia)

A6 highway Zagreb-Rijeka

A8 highway Pula-Kaštel(Slovenia)

Who are the best car hire rental companies in Croatia?

There are a lot of car rental companies in Croatia but we recommend choosing companies with offices in multiple cities and multiple airports.

Like this you can pick up your car upon arrival and leave it on your departure or half way through your holiday; basically it just gives you more flexibility. Some of the most famous companies in the country are Last Minute rent a car, Oryx and Carwiz.

When you rent a car there a few things that you should know. First is the driving age in Croatia, if you are 18 and you have a valid drivining license you can drive in Croatia but if you want to rent a car more or less all the hire car companies charge extra if you are younger than 22 (usually around 180 HRK); additional insurance is also needed with some companies if you are a senior driver (over 70).

All the companies also charge extra if you want to pick up a car on one location and than leave it at another place (price usually depands on the distance and it can be between 500 and 800 HRK).

ferry boats to brac island

Crossing Croatia’s borders?

They will charge around 375HRK, most companies in their basic offer do not charge extra if you are in transit and going toward Dubrovnik through Neum in Bosnia and Herzegovinia. If you don’t plan to explore neighburing countries you wont need this option. Visiting Mostar ,Sarajevo or Kravice waterfalls in Bosnia and Herzegovinia is definitly worth the additional cost and a simply beautiful day trip. If you take this option you can also stop by in Montenegro and visit Kotor and enjoy the vibe there for a day. Paying cross border fees for countries that are in EU is not necessary, so a visit to Slovenia and Lake Bled for example are great options too.

Other useful Croatian car rental info:

– Mobile hot spot data 45-75 HRK depanding of the company

– GPS will cost you around 60 HRK

– Returning your car after official working hours normally means around 260HRK supplement.

– Insurance from 60-280 HRK per day-depending which insurance you take.

– Credit card payment is mandatory when you rent a car in Croatia and depending which insurance you take (basic,smart or premium) they will autohorise your credit card with a security deposit, it can variey from 7000 to 22000HRK.

– If you take the maximum insurance they will authorise with a smaller coverage of around 1500 HRK (for fuel,parking fines etc.). Taking this additional insurance protects you from any possible damage on the car. When you book just make sure to have enough funds on your credit card.

– Before you pick up the car just make sure to inspect it for any possible damage, check the fuel and all the details that later on might cause an additional cost. When you start your adventure in Croatia you can download an app from Croatian Auto Club (HAK) and check all the road news in the country, they also have web cams and english speaking opereators that you can call on 987.  

– In case of any accidents make sure to fill out a report and save all the possible bills so you can pass that onto your insurance.When you finish with your rental also check the car so that you don’t have any surprises on your credit card.

Below in the chart you can see prices in three different companies in low season and in peak season for the same car, prices are for a basic booking without any additional packages.

Driving in Croatia is quite an adventure because there will be so many things that you will want to see and there wont be enough time to see it all. Just be prepared to make unplaned stops and have your phones and cameras charged for all the beautiful landscapes you will see along your journey. We do hope  that this blog was useful and we would just like to say that you enjoy Croatia; whatever your plans.

Company Economy Limousine Passanger van Luxury  
Last Minute low season Opel Corsa 181HRK           Opel Insignia etc. 438 HRK         Peugot 5008 and Opel Zafira for 7 people 509HRK      Audi A4,Mercedes Benz C-Class 538HRK automatic            
Last minute  season 369HRK 632Hrk   909HRK   1200HRK  
Oryx low season VW Polo 138 HRK Škoda Octavia 249 HRK Renault Traffic 619HRK Audi A6 1099 HRK  
Oryx season 359 HRK 539HRK 1159 HRK 1179 HRK  
Carwizz low season Škoda Fabia 232 HRK VW Golf etc. 292 HRK Renault Traffic 735 HRK Audi A4 Automatic 735HRK                
Carwizz season 389 HRK 563HRK 1325HRK 955HRK
*Important info: 1EUR=7,42HRK by exchange rate when this blog was written; in the summer time it is usually 1EUR=7,5 HRK.

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