This year we want to spend our summer holidays in Croatia. The country is beautiful and absolutely on the advance of family-friendly travel. There is also sunshine, the sea is turquoise and the food is delicious. Lena was in Croatia 2 years ago and told me so much about it that the decision was not difficult for us. Therefore there are a few tips from Lena today on how to travel to Croatia with a child in summer.
The way to Croatia – by car, train or plane?
Croatia is unfortunately not just around the corner, but a few kilometres away. So it makes sense to think about how you want to get there. If you have a lot of time and 2-3 weeks vacation, it makes a lot of sense to drive your own car with Baby. Here you can pack everything you need, you are flexible and you can also travel at night when the children are asleep. So you probably make it easy for all around it in the best case there are no complaints from the back seat. Another advantage is that you can just drive around the place as you like and maybe even get to beaches that are not so heavily frequented. On the way there, one can make a stopover in Austria and thus the trip is not quite as long in one piece. As a child I even went to Croatia with my parents and remember the long trip very well. But at that time we had a VW bus and a lot of space to sleep and play.
In fact, our trip two years ago went there by train and back by plane. For 39 € we went via Salzburg and Villach to Rijeka, a spot price and the train ride was super pleasant. From Salzburg the trains were totally empty, very clean and you often had a whole compartment for yourself. The baby or toddler can also sleep there. A real alternative for me if you want to travel ecologically and don’t have your own car. In Croatia itself you can take a rental car or take the bus everywhere. A disadvantage for travelling with a child could be the inconvenience of having to change with a child and a skittles.
This is certainly the fastest and perhaps also the most relaxed solution if you know that you can fly with your child or baby. You can fly from Germany to countless places in Croatia, such as Pula in Istria, Zadar, Split or Dubrovnik. On the spot you can rent a car or take a shuttle to your hotel. For all-inclusive holidays, this is the best choice anyway. But the topic flight with baby is an own for itself. K’s first flight this year was to Barcelona in January and there will certainly be something to read about it soon.
Where to in Croatia – Istria or further south?
If you come by car, it is a good idea to spend the first part of your trip in Istria. 2015 we were in Rovinj and we liked it very much. The small town is picturesque and can be explored very well with kids. Also with the baby carriage or the stretcher no problem at all. There is ice cream and very good food. My tip: If you walk further to the left at the harbour, you will get to some very expensive hotels. They have great (gravel) beaches, but they are great to use with bathing shoes. Especially in front of the Hotel Lone there is a super nice lawn, which is also very shady and can be populated with children. And now my insider tip. The Hotel Lone has a huge pool and with a little courage you can use it without being a guest. Just walk through the garden and splash around in the saltwater pool.
The city of Porec is also great. I was there with my parents as a child and also remember it as a super child-friendly city. There were also only stone beaches, but many shady places and also great stairs over which you could go with baby into the water. We had a whole holiday home there, which is available in Croatia at great prices.
Croatian islands – where is it beautiful?
After our stop in Rovinj we went on to the island Mali Losinj, which I would like to recommend to you. However, my tip is not necessarily a long ferry trip, but to travel by car over the island of Cres. You only have to drive a very short ferry and you can also stop on Cres on the way. Mali Losinj is fantastic and really great for families. We spent our week there in the family hotel Vespera. The hotel is big, but very quietly situated in the middle of pine forests, with great food for children, a pool, lots of shade and also a great children’s program with great animation. The sea there is turquoiser than turquoise and so beautiful to swim. You can also walk 20-25 minutes into the city with ice cream and great restaurants. There is also a Lidl, for the supply in between. The hotel is located on Cikat Bay – a beautiful stretch of coast where you can swim very calmly and sometimes even see dolphins. Who has time and desire, runs after Veli Losinj, from the city Mali Losinj leads a small coast/sea way there, which can be mastered also with baby carriages. On the way, one can often swim very well.
Croatian cities – Zadar, Split or Dubrovnik?
Our flight home was from Zadar, that was uncomplicated, but the city doesn’t seem so beautiful to me that I want to recommend it to others. There was nice food and you can certainly spend a day there, but you don’t have to look for accommodation there. The southern cities of Split and Dubrovnik are said to be beautiful, but we didn’t make it there. If one wants to have a look at the cities, a flight is really recommended, as it would be much too far for the little passengers to go by car without a bigger stopover.
Holidays with a toddler in Croatia – what to pack?
We spent the first two weeks of June in Croatia and had well over 30 degrees every day. So it was very hot and we used a lot of sun cream. There one should reach for a strong cream and absolutely also water shirts with sun protection, since the small ones want to splash there really much. You also need bathing shoes, because there are almost only gravel and stone beaches. I recommend you some kind of diving shoes, we had them too and they were super good. They are available in all sizes from mini child to adult size. Since you can’t lie so soft in the sand, soft, padded beach mats are a good choice. We have moaned a few times about the hard lying. It goes without saying that swimming wings or a great air mattress should not be missing. Otherwise, you can find food for children there without any problems – lots of delicious fish and a normal drink everywhere. I think it is very easy to travel with a child in Croatia.
We also had a travel guide of Croatia* with us, the edition of Lonely Planet has and often helped.
There will be more about Croatia after the summer, when Annina spent her holidays there with K and Mann. What do you say, do you like Croatia and perhaps have some tips for us and our readers? We are happy about everything about this topic in the comments.
The links marked with * are affiliate links. If you buy the item through my link recommendation, I will receive a small commission. Of course the price does not change for you.