Last Updated on November 5, 2023
Looking for destinations that are great for solo travellers? In this post I share 6 reasons why you should solo travel Croatia! I have been travelling solo since 2010 and I love it, it’s one of my favourite ways to travel. I spent 7 days exploring Dubrovnik and the surrounding area by myself and now I’m sharing my tips, tricks and reasons why this Balkan country is great for solo travel!
Disclosure Pr Event: This post is in collaboration with Jet2Holidays and their #jet2goingsolo campaign, however all opinions are my own. For more information visit the Privacy & Disclosure Policy.
Solo Travel Croatia
1. Croatia has something for everyone
⭐️First time solo travel tip: Rather than try and see everywhere in the country, pick a ‘base’ and explore the surrounding area.
Regardless of the type of travel you enjoy. Croatia has something for everyone. From cities, to nature, islands, adventure and good food/drink.
Some of the major cities in Croatia are Zagreb, Zadar, Split and Dubrovnik. Zagreb is the capital city and is in-land, however the others are on the coast.
Krka National Park is a hot spot for nature lovers, which is located between Zadar and Split.
Dubrovnik sits at the southern tip of the country. Bosnia & Herzegovina actually divides Croatia in two. If travelling by road from the northern cities, you’ll have to pass through Bosnia first before you reach Dubrovnik!
Cable Car above Old Town Dubrovnik with Lokrum Island in the distance
Here are some of my recommendations for the Dubrovnik area based on different travel styles:
🌆City lovers: Old Town Dubrovnik is small, very walkable and photogenic. Make sure to do the city wall walk around the edge of the Old Town.
🌳Nature/Islands: Take a boat trip from Dubrovnik Old Town Harbour to Lokrum Island. This island is a nature reserve with no cars or overnight stays. It’s great for walking, swimming and seeing wildlife (peacocks and giant rabbits!).
🚠Adventure: Take a ride up the cable car that overlooks the city. Since my visit there is now a bicycle zip line, which looks AWESOME. Kayaking is also a popular water activity.
🍹Food & Drink: There are a couple of unique bars in Dubrovnik. Buza Bar clings to the edge of the rock, outside of the city walls. It has great sea views and is a good place to relax with a cold beer.
Solo travel ‘self timer’ photo at Buza Bar rock beach in Dubrovnik
2. Good introduction to island hopping/cruising
As well as the mainland, Croatia has 1244 islands! Only 48 are inhabited, but they give lots of opportunity for exploration, either via ferries or as part of day trips or cruises.
As mentioned above, Lokrum Island is super simple to visit from Dubrovnik Old Town, but if you wanted to go further afield, there are plenty of other options.
Dubrovnik to Lokrum Island ferry
Jet2Holidays Discover More have a couple of small scale Croatian cruises that depart from Split. They stop at ports of call such as: Hvar, Vis, Mljet, Rab and Dubrovnik.
These could be a great choice for solo travellers to see several locations on one trip. Especially those that would prefer a boat with a smaller capacity to meet other travellers, but still have the privacy of private rooms as well as guidance/guides.
Dubrovnik cruise port
3. Great weather during the shoulder season
⭐️First time solo travel tip: My favourite time to explore a city is EARLY in the morning when the streets are empty!
Peak travel for Croatia is during the summer months of June, July and August. During these months the crowds are obviously going to be bigger (especially when large cruise ships are docked) and the weather is going to be hotter.
But the shoulder season months of May and September still have beautiful weather and are great times to visit Croatia as a solo traveller. I visited at the beginning of May and it was sunny and warm every day (low to mid 20s).
Lokrum Island’s amazing sea colour during the May shoulder season travel
I even went swimming in the sea a couple of times. The sea temperature in Dubrovnik in May averages 18c, so it is quite cold, but not terrible!
When visiting beaches and solo swimming in shoulder season, there’s often more space to leave/hide unattended belongings and less people to try and swipe them! (Items are left at your own risk, but you find ways to make it ‘work’!)
Although it can still be busy, it didn’t feel as overwhelming like some of the larger cities in other countries can be.
4. Croatia is quite an ‘easy’ travel destination
⭐️First time solo travel tip: If in doubt, grab an eSim to still have a phone data plan while travelling.
In terms of travel, Croatia is quite an ‘easy’ travel destination for several reasons. Almost everyone I met could speak very good English and all signage/menus etc were written in English too.
I found it easy to get around by walking or using the local bus networks or taxi.
Direction sign on the ground, guiding the way from Lapad to Dubrovnik Old Town
Croatia is also part of the European Union and it recently adopted the Euro as its currency. For those that have EU data roaming plans, this means that you can continue using your phone in Croatia.
I live in the UK and my phone plan does still cover EU travel. Alternatively if you don’t have an international travel data plan, you can get an eSim from Airalo. This is good if you didn’t want to rely on WiFi.
5. Lots of accommodation options
⭐️First time solo travel tip: I have always preferred private rooms to hostel dorm rooms, it can be quite overwhelming to share a room with strangers!
For Croatia solo travel, there are lots of different accommodation options available, especially in the cities.
I love to have a balcony when I travel – Sea view room in Lapad Dubrovnik
My personal solo travel style is to stay in hotels/private rooms. I’m not a fan of dorm rooms, or overly social accommodation options and that’s totally fine. There is no right or wrong way to solo travel, everyone has their own comfort zones.
I found Croatia to be very reasonably priced. Accommodation in Old Town Dubrovnik is a little more expensive, especially if you want a private room. However the Dubrovnik district of Lapad is a quick bus ride away or a 45 minute walk from the Old Town and has lower priced options.
Hotel Uvala swimming pool in Lapad (Jet2Holidays service this hotel)
There are a range of larger hotels dotted around a bay with a rocky beach and more restaurants and bars.
Solo Package Holiday
⭐️First time solo travel tip: Package holidays can handle all the logistics of a trip!
If you are new to solo travel and want to ease in gently, package holidays can be a great option. This way the flights, airport to hotel transfers and accommodation are all included. Plus you often have in-resort contacts.
Even after 13 years solo travelling I sometimes book myself a solo package holiday, just for hassle free travels. You don’t have to worry about inconvenient flight arrival and depart times, as you are collected from the airport and picked up from the hotel on departure.
As a solo traveller when travelling independently I always try to arrive in daylight hours. With a package holiday I don’t have to worry about this.
Jet2Holidays have flights into both Dubrovnik and Split, and accommodation options spread across 36 resorts in Croatia (including Lapad Dubrovnik). Solo travellers receive a £30 discount when using the code SOLO30.
Some of the hotels also have solo occupancy rooms, which is cheaper than having to book a standard double room for one person.
⭐️First time solo travel tip: Try a half board basis if you are worried about going in and eating in busy restaurants alone.
Package holidays are also a good way of finding accommodation that has different board options. These are:
Room only/self catering
Bed & breakfast
During my solo trip to Croatia, my hotel was half board. This meant that breakfast and a dinner buffet was included in my room rate.
If you are nervous about eating alone as a solo traveller, I find that eating within the accommodation is less ‘awkward’ than having to walk into and eat alone at a restaurant. Often other guests may be travelling solo too.
The restaurant in my hotel had an awesome sea view across Lapad!
Buffet service restaurants also mean that you don’t have to stare into space while waiting for food to arrive. You can simply grab your food and start eating it right away.
I usually take a hoodie or a jacket to leave over the back of a chair and my business card doubles up as a ‘this seat is taken’ card, which I leave on the table, while getting my food.
Staying on a half board basis still gives you the opportunity to visit cafes and bars for lunch and drinks etc. You don’t even have to have the evening meal if you don’t want to, but the option is there if you do want it.
Ice cream in Lapad Dubrovnik.
6. Croatia is a good base for exploring other Balkan countries
⭐️First time solo travel tip: Book small group day tours to meet other travellers.
While I was in Croatia, I went on two day trips, one to Bosnia & Herzegovnia and another to Montenegro. Because I prefer hotel stays over hostels, as a solo traveller, day trips are a great way to meet other travellers.
I prefer small group mini bus tours, to the larger coach trips. When there are less people, you tend to speak to each other more. Even if you don’t explore the stops with the other travellers, it’s nice to catch up on the bus and sometimes groups will sit together at lunch stops.
For solo travellers that might be nervous at using public transport alone, day tours can be a great way to get an introduction of a slightly harder to reach destination.
Bosnia & Herzegovina
From Dubrovnik the day tours were extremely long, from early morning until late in the evening. The main stop on the Bosnia day tours is to Mostar. Here you’ll see the famous Stari Most bridge, maybe see some of the professional bridge divers and have time to wander the cobble streets. Počitelj was another stop that I enjoyed.
Day Trip: Dubrovnik to Bosnia
I actually returned to solo travel more of Bosnia (Sarajevo) a couple of years after my Dubrovnik to Bosnia day tour!
The Montenegro tours stop at Perast, Kotor and Budva. For me, the main reason for going on the tour was that I wanted to do the Kotor city wall walk. A down side to day tours, is that they are often rushed and I literally had to run up the 1300 stone steps to get to the top!
Day Trip: Dubrovnik to Kotor – Solo Selfie!
It was worth it though, I’m glad I saw it and the day tour took away any stress of getting there in dependently.
Final Thoughts for Croatia Solo Travel
I loved my time solo travelling in Croatia. I felt very safe throughout my stay and never received unwanted attention, which is sometimes present in other countries. It’s a great warm weather destination for those that might be wanting something different from the likes of Spain or Italy!
About the Author – Kylie
My travels have taken me to over 40 countries worldwide (& I lived in USA for 4yrs). I hold a BTEC National Diploma in Travel & Tourism (triple distinction) and have been writing on Between England & Everywhere since 2015.
Expert in: Adventure travel🎢, beach destinations🏖️, and packing light (mid-budget backpacker)🎒