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Croatia's Regions

For those who didn't know, Croatia (Hrvatska), is in the Balkans in Central Europe. It is a fascinating country, a bridge between the East and West, and a cross roads of many cultures and influences. It was colonised in ancient times by the Illyrians, Greeks and Romans, followed by the Celts, Croats (of course!), Venetians, Italians, Ottomans, Hungarians and Austrians, all of whom have left their mark (some of the best preserved examples of Roman architecture can be found in Croatia). From this melting pot of civilisations has developed a country with a character all its own.

Croatia is made up of five provinces: Slavonia, the furthermost inland, Central Croatia, the largest province, and Istria, Kvarner and Dalmatia, the coastal provinces, which include 1,185 islands on the Adriatic. The five insignia on the Croatian flag, incidentally, correspond to the five provinces.

Croatia can also be divided into geographical areas; continental, mountainous and coastal. These largely determine the climate, which can vary quite considerably across the country. Northern Croatia has a continental climate, Central Croatia has a semi-highland and highland climate, while the Croatian coast has a Mediterranean climate. Winter temperatures range from -1 to 3ºC in the continental region, -5 to 0ºC in the mountain region and 5 to 10ºC in the coastal region. Summer temperatures range from 22 to 26ºC in the continental region, 15 to 20ºC in the mountain region and 26 to 30ºC in the coastal region. Of course, in the mountains along the coast one can expect the temperature to be cooler. In fact, you can be sitting in a cafe on a sea front in Dalmatia during Spring, dressed in just T-shirt and shorts, and the mountain peaks behind you could be capped with snow! It's a very beautiful sight.

Most holiday makers will be going to Croatia for the sea, sunshine and beaches but one mustn't forget its inland attractions. Croatia, for instance, has 8 National parks overflowing with fauna and flora, forests, cascading waterfalls, rivers and deep blue lakes. Four of the parks are in the mountainous region (Risnjak, Sjeverni Velebit, Paklenica and Plitvice Lakes), and four are in the coastal region (Kornati, Mljet, Brijuni and Krka). There are about 450 000 hectares of protected natural assets (national parks, reservations, natural monuments, nature parks) in Croatia and 44 herbal and 381 animal species are protected. Over 400 bears roam wild in the mountain forests and wild sheep, mountain goats, wild cats, wolves and an abundance of lynx live happily here. The amount of bird life is too vast to mention! Of course, there are the various geological phenomena too - mountains, valleys, canyons, sinkholes, ravines, springs, gorges and caves, some unexploited.

Click on a region below to find out more:

Regions of Croatia - Istria


The province of Istria, known locally as Istarska Zupanija is in the west of Croatia on the Adriatic, on a peninsula shaped very much like India. The flavour of Istria is a mixture of Italian with the particular charm of the Croatian Adriatic. A green countryside of vine groves...

Regions of Croatia - Central Dalmatia

Central Dalmatia

This area, known locally as Splitsko-Dalmatinska, extends from Trogir to Ploce in the southeast on the mainland. It also covers the islands of Solta, Brac, Hvar and Vis.
This is one of the most popular tourist areas on the Croatian coast, so, for convenience...

Regions of Croatia - Kvarner


The area consists of three geographic regions - the Croatian Coast (the coast under the Velebit range), the Kvarner bay islands of Krk, Rab, Losinj and Cres and north-eastern coast of Istria, and the hinterland mountainous region of Gorski Kotar. It also includes the north part...

Regions of Croatia - South Dalmatia

South Dalmatia

It hardly needs introducing, as Dubrovnik is probably the most well known place in Croatia, and not without reason. But there is more to the region; it also includes the Peljesac Peninsula, the islands of Korcula, with the beautiful town of the same name, and Mljet...

Regions of Croatia - North Dalmatia

North Dalmatia

Known locally as Zadarska zupanija, Zadar county is the northern most region of Dalmatia. It includes the southern part of the island of Pag and has several national parks and natural areas, most well known being the Paklenica National Park situated along two impressive...

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