Meandering effortlessly between over 1,000 dazzling islands with pink sunsets, sun-kissed pebble beaches, breathtaking coastal views and ancient ruins are the winning holiday combination that currently draws stars such as Nicky Hilton, Norah Jones and Ralph Lauren.
Jumping on board a sailing boat is the best way to explore the coast of actor Eric Bana's and Goran Ivanisevic's ancestors. You can grab some mates and hire a yacht, or for people travelling alone a great way to meet new friends is through Sail Croatia's weeklong organized group island hopping trips. On this trip you sleep on a traditional boat at night, wake up on the water and swim or sunbathe on your way to a new island each day.
And the islands are so close you can discover a new one each day very easily. There are exactly 1,185 islands to explore - famous for their brightly coloured flowers, dramatic cliff-lined coastlines, vineyards and olive groves, lavender oil and quaint fishing villages. You won't be bored in Croatia.
If you're not booking a tour with a sail company then catch a ferry from Split to the nearby island of Brac, Hvar and Vis. Brac boasts Croatia's most famous beach Zlatni Rat, with its 500-metre-long shingle near the town of Bol. Hvar is an up market party island with a pretty Venetian Harbour.
The Southern Islands of Korcula and Miljet have a more relaxed vibe. Korcula is an ancient walled town where it's believed the 13th Century Venetian explorer Marco Polo was born. Mljet is dominated by national park with pine forest covering more than 70 per cent of the island.
It's well worth stopping at one of the Brijuni Islands for a day, where you'll surprisingly find a collection of exotic animals roaming around. Zebras, horses and ostriches roam together in a big national park, which also contains dinosaur footprints. The Island once belonged to former Yugoslavian dictator Josip Broz Tito, who used it as a playground for which to entertain the rich and famous. You'll also find a gothic church, roman ruins and a golf course, plenty to do and see in a day!
The Best Souvenirs
The islands are full of funky art jewellery. Snap up a hand-crafted necklace pieced together from the ocean's brightest coral, or get your hands on a piece of Croatia's famous marble, like the island Brac's marble - which was used to build the White House in Washington, D.C.