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Croatia travel guide

About Croatia

Occupying a stunning stretch of the Adriatic coastline, Croatia is one of Europe's top seaside destinations. Boasting more than 1,100 islands, the country is renowned for its limpid waters and picture-perfect scenery.

But Croatia is much more than sea and sunshine – it’s home to historic walled cities and spectacular Roman ruins, as well as imposing castles and unspoiled national parks. The fantastic cuisine, including seafood on the coast and truffles in Istria, fine wines and buzzing café culture add to the appeal.

The capital, Zagreb, can be called quintessentially Central European. Everything from the architecture to the hearty cuisine reflects the region’s centuries-old ties with the Austro-Hungarian Empire. The city also makes a good base from which to explore the historic castles and vineyards of Zagorje.

One thing that has changed greatly in the last decade in Croatia is tourism. The coast was once an undiscovered, undeveloped natural wonder as beautiful as Italy's, but without the fanfare. Now tourists from Britain, Germany and beyond flock to the Dalmatian region, and many have snapped up holiday homes.

The gorgeous seaside cities of Split and Dubrovnik still maintain their charm, but tend to be crowded with tourists during the day. The evenings in these coastal hubs tend to be much quieter, and there are often classical music concerts and other events in the city centres.

Beyond the tourist zones, Croatia is full of isolated places where you can discover more traditional, local life. Head to Plitvice for its amazing, lake-strewn national park, or explore the rugged mountain ranges of Velebit and Gorski Kotar, havens for hiking.

Back on the Adriatic, Croatia offers ideal sailing conditions, scuba diving and sea kayaking. And of course, those in search of a more restful holiday can enjoy hours of sunshine on the beach. As Europe's top naturist destination, Croatia is also a place where you can even get that all-over tan.

Clothing is advised if you’re planning to explore the country’s seven UNESCO World Heritage Sites, world-class museums and festivals, which come thick and fast throughout the summer.

Key facts


56,542 sq km (21,831 sq miles).


4,218,584 (UN estimate 2016).

Population density:

79 per sq km.





Head of state:

President Zoran Milanović since 2020.

Head of government:

Prime Minister Tihomir Orešković since 2016.

Travel Advice

Before you travel, check the ‘Entry requirements’ section for Croatia’s current entry restrictions and requirements. Due to COVID-19, these may change with little warning. Monitor this advice for the latest updates and stay in contact with your travel provider.

If you plan to pass through another country on your journey, check the travel advice for the country you’re transiting.

It is more important than ever to get travel insurance and check it provides appropriate cover. See the FCDO’s guidance on foreign travel insurance.

There are rules about taking food and drink into the EU. See Taking food and drink into the EU for further information.

Approximately 727,555 British nationals visited Croatia in 2022. Most visits are trouble-free.

If you’re living in or moving to Croatia, visit our Living in Croatia guide in addition to this travel advice.

If you’re travelling to Croatia by road or rail, you can find information on road border crossings and international rail journeys on the Croatian Automobile Association (HAK) website.

Carry your passport with you at all times. You must be able to show some form of identification if required, including when checking into hotels. See Local laws and customs

Land mines are still a danger in some isolated areas. See Safety and security

Terrorist attacks in Croatia can’t be ruled out. See Terrorism

You should take out comprehensive travel and medical insurance before you travel. For information on the European Health Insurance Card, see Health

If you’re abroad and you need emergency help from the UK government, contact the nearest British embassy, consulate or high commission.

The Overseas Business Risk service offers information and advice for British companies operating overseas on how to manage political, economic, and business security-related risks.

Coronavirus travel health

Check the latest information on risk from COVID-19 for Croatia on the TravelHealthPro website.

See the TravelHealthPro website for further advice on travel abroad and reducing spread of respiratory viruses during the COVID-19 pandemic.

If you test positive for COVID-19 whilst you are in Croatia you should follow advice from the local authorities and get in touch with the local epidemiologist. Call 113 (from a Croatian number) for general advice about COVID-19. Arrangements for self-isolation and the associated costs may vary, but you should be prepared to make your own arrangements for self-isolation and bear any related costs. If you test positive for COVID-19, do not attempt to check in for your flight, as you may be subject to a fine from the Croatian Police.

International travel

You should follow the advice of the local authorities in the most appropriate way to protect yourself and others, including any measures brought in to control the virus. These measures may change at short notice either at national or at local level. You should check local guidance for further information and details about restrictions in Croatia.

Be prepared for your plans to change

No travel is risk-free during COVID-19. Countries may further restrict travel or bring in new rules at short notice, for example due to a new COVID-19 variant. Check with your travel company or airline for any transport changes, which may delay your journey home.

If you test positive for COVID-19, you may need to stay where you are until you test negative. You may also need to seek treatment there.

Plan ahead and make sure you:

  • can access money
  • understand what your insurance will cover
  • can make arrangements to extend your stay and be away for longer than planned

Travel in Croatia

There are no restrictions on regional travel within Croatia.

Face masks

Whilst it is no longer a requirement to wear a mask in indoor settings, or for large gatherings, it is still a requirement in pharmacies and medical facilities. You should follow the guidance of your airline or transport provider as some may still require you to wear a mask.

Public places and services

If you need to demonstrate vaccination status whilst in Croatia, the UK’s proof of COVID-19 recovery and vaccination record and proof of COVID-19 vaccination issued in the Crown Dependencies are recognised. Your final vaccine dose must have been administered at least 14 days previously. Your NHS appointment card from vaccination centres is not designed to be used as proof of vaccination and should not be used to demonstrate your vaccine status.


If you feel that you have symptoms of coronavirus, you should contact the Croatian government’s COVID19 hotline on telephone number 113. Alternatively, you should contact the nearest specialist clinic – the contact details according to county, can be found here

Information on testing facilities throughout Croatia can be found on the government website. You should check that the test result can be provided in the correct format and language.

For contact details for English speaking doctors visit our list of healthcare providers.

Your emotional and mental wellbeing is important. Read guidance on how to look after your mental wellbeing and mental health.

View Health for further details on healthcare in Croatia.


For information on financial support you can access whilst abroad, visit our financial assistance guidance.

Further information

The Croatian Government Office for Public Health publishes updates and advice (in Croatian, with some information in English).

There have been a number of hoax bomb threats against shopping centres and other sites in Croatia, causing disruption, including to transport. You should keep up to date with local developments and follow the advice of local authorities.


Crime levels are low and violent crime is rare.

Some tourists have been the victims of overcharging in so-called ‘Gentlemen’s Clubs’, sometimes amounting to thousands of Euros. Victims can be threatened with violence if they refuse to pay.

Take care in busy tourist areas, where pickpockets are known to operate. Avoid carrying large amounts of cash. Don’t leave valuables unattended, particularly on the beach. Use a hotel safe if possible.

Report all incidents of crime to the local police station and get a police report.

Local travel

If you’re planning to travel outside the normal tourist resorts, beware of unexploded mines in previously war-affected areas like Eastern Slavonia, Brodsko-Posavska County, Karlovac County, areas around Zadar County and in more remote areas of the Plitvice Lakes National Park. For more information about mine-affected areas visit the Civil Protection website (in Croatian only) or contact the Civil Protection offices.

If you’re travelling in these areas, avoid leaving cultivated land or marked paths. If in doubt seek local advice.

If you’re hiking in the mountains, seek expert advice from local guides, however tame the mountain might seem to you. The weather in the Croatian mountains can change quickly, even in summer and temperatures can get very low overnight. There have been reports of hikers getting lost in the mountains when they have gone out alone and left marked paths. You can find tips about mountaineering on the Croatian Mountain Rescue page and on Twitter HrvatskaGSS, as well as their maps. If you get into trouble, call the emergency number 112 and the Croatian Mountain Rescue Service will help you as best they can.

Road travel

In 2021, there were 291 road deaths in the Croatia (source: Department for Transport). This equates to 71 road deaths per 1,000,000 of population and compares to the UK average of 23 road deaths per 1,000,000 of population in 2021.

If you are planning to drive in Croatia, see information on Driving Abroad.

Licences and documents

UK driving licence holders may drive in Croatia on their UK licence for a period of up to 12 months. An International Driving Permit is not required.

Authorities may ask you to provide proof of ownership if you bring your own or rented vehicle into the country. Proof of ownership can de demonstrated by presenting a V5 log book both at the border or while driving. If you fail to produce this when asked, you will be refused entry or authorities might impound the car until you can prove ownership. Contact the Croatian Embassy in London if you have more detailed questions about bringing a vehicle in to the country. The British Embassy is unable to help individuals attempting to bring vehicles into Croatia and do not have the correct documents.

If you’re driving to or through Bosnia and Herzegovina, including the 20km strip of coastline at Neum on the Dalmatian coastal highway, make sure that you have the appropriate paperwork for your vehicle “Zelena karta” Green card that includes cover for Bosnia and Herzegovina. You can’t buy insurance for Bosnia and Herzegovina at the Neum border crossing.

Since July 2022 it is possible to travel between Dubrovnik and the rest of mainland Croatia over Pelješac Bridge, without traveling through Bosnia and Herzegovina.

If you’re living in Croatia, check the Living in Guide for information on requirements for residents.

Driving a British car abroad

You may need a UK sticker to drive your car outside the UK. From 28 September 2021 UK stickers have replaced GB stickers. Check the GOV.UK Displaying number plates website for more information on what to do if you are driving outside the UK.

Road safety

Take care when overtaking and be wary of other road users unexpectedly overtaking in slower traffic. Minor roads are usually unlit at night.

Emergency road help (HAK) may be reached by dialling (+385 1) 1987. English speakers operate this service. Traffic information in English is available on 98.5FM during the tourist season only.

Driving regulations

It is illegal to drive with more than 0.05% of alcohol in the blood system.

You must drive with dipped headlights until the 31 March, even during the daytime. You must have winter tyres on your vehicle between 15 November and 15 April. You must not use a mobile phone whilst driving.

It’s obligatory to carry a fluorescent vest in your car whilst driving in Croatia. You must keep the vest in the car and not in the boot. You should wear the vest while attending to a breakdown. All passengers must wear seat belts and special seats are required for infants. Children under the age of 12 must not sit in the front seat.

See the European Commission,AA and RAC guides on driving in Croatia.

Rail travel

Take care to guard valuables, especially at night.

Sea travel

There is zero tolerance on alcohol consumption if you are in charge of a yacht or boat. There are heavy penalties for being caught drunk in charge of a boat. Authorities can arrest yacht/boat skippers for entering a non-designated entry port without informing the authorities. If you are sailing to Croatia, enter only at a designated port/harbour. If this is not possible, contact the local harbour master or the police before entering.

The Croatian Government requires all skippers to have an International Certificate of Competence (ICC). The recognised body for the issue of ICCs in the UK is the Royal Yachting Association (RYA).

Terrorist attacks in Croatia can’t be ruled out. Attacks could be indiscriminate, including in places visited by foreigners.

UK Counter Terrorism Policing has information and advice on staying safe abroad and what to do in the event of a terrorist attack. Find out more about the global threat from terrorism.

There’s a heightened threat of terrorist attack globally against UK interests and British nationals, from groups or individuals motivated by the conflict in Iraq and Syria. You should be vigilant at this time.

This page has information on travelling to Croatia.

This page reflects the UK government’s understanding of current rules for people travelling on a full ‘British Citizen’ passport from the UK, for the most common types of travel.

The authorities in Croatia set and enforce entry rules. If you’re unsure how Croatia’s entry requirements apply to you, contact its UK embassy, high commission or consulate.

All travellers

All travellers should familiarise themselves with the entry rules for Croatia before travel.

Travellers are no longer required to complete an online entry form before arriving in Croatia. However, all third country nationals (including British citizens) must register their arrival in Croatia via their accommodation provider within 1 day, or with the police within 48 hours of arrival. This can be done at a police station using the form obrazac 16 a.

Third country nationals are also responsible for registering any change in their accommodation during their stay, unless they are staying at a hotel/hostel/private accommodation that would register this for them.

Travellers are not required to show a COVID-19 vaccine certificate, proof of a negative test, or a certificate of recovery to enter Croatia.

If you’re fully vaccinated

Entry requirements for Croatia are the same for all travellers, regardless of COVID-19 vaccination status.

Proof of vaccination status

You don’t need to provide your vaccination status for entry to Croatia.

If you’re not fully vaccinated

Entry requirements for Croatia are the same for all travellers, regardless of COVID-19 vaccination status.

If you’ve had COVID-19 in the past year

Entry requirements for Croatia are the same for all travellers, regardless of whether you have tested positive for COVID-19 in the past year.

Children and young people

There are no specific requirements for children and young people.

If you’re transiting through Croatia

Transiting is when you pass through one country on the way to your final destination.

Transiting through Croatia is permitted.

If you are travelling to neighbouring countries you should check the travel advice for the latest information on entering those countries. See travel advice for Hungary, Italy, Montenegro, Serbia and Slovenia.

Check your passport and travel documents before you travel

Passport validity

If you are planning to travel to an EU country (except Ireland), or Switzerland, Norway, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Andorra, Monaco, San Marino or Vatican City, you must follow the Schengen area passport requirements.

Your passport must be:

  • Issued less than 10 years before the date you enter the country (check the ‘date of issue’)
  • valid for at least 3 months after the day you plan to leave (check the ‘expiry date’)

You must check your passport meets these requirements before you travel. If your passport was issued before 1 October 2018, extra months may have been added to its expiry date.

Contact the embassy of the country you are visiting if you think that your passport does not meet both these requirements. Renew your passport if you need to.


As of 01 January 2023 Croatia is part of the Schengen area.

You can travel to countries in the Schengen area for up to 90 days in any 180-day period without a visa. This applies if you travel as a tourist, to visit family or friends, to attend business meetings, cultural or sports events, or for short-term studies or training.

If you are travelling to Croatia and other Schengen countries without a visa, make sure your whole visit is within the 90-day limit. Visits to Schengen countries within the previous 180 days before you travel count towards your 90 days.

To stay longer, to work or study, for business travel or for other reasons, you will need to meet the Croatian government’s entry requirements. Check with the Croatian Embassy in London as to what type of visa and/or work permit you may need.

If you are travelling to Croatia for work, read the guidance on visas and permits.

If you stay in Croatia with a Croatia residence permit or long-stay visa, this line does not count towards your 90-day visa-free limit for Croatia.

Passport stamping

Check your passport is stamped if you enter or exit the Schengen area through Croatia as a visitor. Border guards will use passport stamps to check you’re complying with the 90-day visa-free limit for short stays in the Schengen area. If relevant entry or exit stamps are not in your passport, border guards will presume that you have overstayed your visa-free limit.

You can show evidence of when and where you entered or exited the Schengen area, and ask the border guards to add this date and location in your passport. Examples of acceptable evidence include boarding passes and tickets.

You may also need to:

  • show a return or onward ticket
  • show proof of accommodation
  • show you have enough money for your stay

If you have a Withdrawal Agreement residency document for another country, your passport might still be stamped if you are a visitor to Croatia.

If you are resident in Croatia, read our Living in Croatia guide for passport stamping information.

UK Emergency Travel Documents

UK ETDs are accepted for entry, transit and exit from Croatia.

We recommend that you carry your passport (or, if a resident your Croatian ID card) at all times. They are the only officially recognised form of identification in Croatia.

Keep a photocopy of the biographical details page in a safe place, including details of your next of kin. If your passport is lost or stolen, you should report it to the police and get a police report. You need to do this before applying for an Emergency Travel Document; advice on how to apply can be found online

You should respect local laws and customs at all times. In some Croatian town centres, authorities may issue on the spot fines for inappropriate behaviour, such as walking through towns shirtless or in swimwear, wearing clothing that promotes drug use, or sleeping in public areas. Most towns have signage to advise about actions that are prohibited by local law. You should take notice of your surroundings, including signage, and take local advice if unsure.

Drug related offences are punishable with fines and jail sentences.

Taking food and drink into the EU

You cannot take meat, milk or products containing them into EU countries. There are some exceptions for medical reasons, for example certain amounts of powdered infant milk, infant food, or pet food required for medical reasons. Check the rules about taking food and drink into the EU on the European Commission website.

If you have a health condition, or you are pregnant, you may need specialist healthcare abroad. Check whether your destination country can provide the healthcare you may need and ensure you have appropriate travel insurance for unexpected medical evacuation or local treatment.

See the Coronavirus travel health and Healthcare sections in the Coronavirus page for COVID-19 health information.

At least 8 weeks before your trip, check the latest country-specific health advice from the National Travel Health Network and Centre (NaTHNaC) on the TravelHealthPro website. Each country-specific page has information on vaccine recommendations, any current health risks or outbreaks, and factsheets with information on staying healthy abroad. Guidance is also available from NHS (Scotland) on the FitForTravel website.

General information on travel vaccinations and a travel health checklist is available on the NHS website. You may then wish to contact your health adviser or pharmacy for advice on other preventive measures and managing any pre-existing medical conditions while you’re abroad.

The legal status and regulation of some medicines prescribed or purchased in the UK can be different in other countries. If you’re travelling with prescription or over-the-counter medicine, read this guidance from NaTHNaC on best practice when travelling with medicines. For further information on the legal status of a specific medicine, you’ll need to contact the embassy, high commission or consulate of the country or territory you’re travelling to.

While travel can be enjoyable, it can sometimes be challenging. There are clear links between mental and physical health, so looking after yourself during travel and when abroad is important. Information on travelling with mental health conditions is available in our guidance page. Further information is also available from the National Travel Health Network and Centre (NaTHNaC).


You should apply for a free UK Global Health Insurance Card (GHIC) or European Health Insurance Card (EHIC) before leaving the UK. If you already have an EHIC, it will still be valid as long as it remains in date.

GHIC or EHIC cards entitle you to state provided medical treatment that may become necessary during your trip. Any treatment provided is on the same terms as Croatian nationals. If you don’t have your EHIC with you or you’ve lost it, you can call the NHS Overseas Healthcare Team on +44 191 218 1999 to get a Provisional Replacement Certificate.

It’s important to take out appropriate travel insurance for your needs. A GHIC or EHIC is not an alternative to travel insurance and you should have both before you travel. It does not cover all health-related costs, for example, medical repatriation, ongoing medical treatment and non-urgent treatment.

Read more about what your travel insurance should cover.

If you are resident in Croatia, you can also find more information on healthcare for residents in our Living in Croatia guide.

Croatia does not recognise UK prescriptions. You should ensure that you bring sufficient supplies of medication with you, and if you need medication while travelling, you should speak to a pharmacist who will tell you if you need a prescription from a local GP.

If you need emergency medical assistance during your trip, dial 112 for an English speaking emergency service and ask for an ambulance. If you are referred to a medical facility for treatment, you should contact your insurance/medical assistance company immediately.


Small tremors are recorded several times a month throughout the year. Most pass without consequences. To learn more about what to do before, during and after an earthquake, visit the website of the US Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Earthquakes in Croatia can be strong and can cause damage to infrastructure and loss of life. In March 2020, a magnitude 5.3 earthquake hit Zagreb and in December 2020 a magnitude 6.4 earthquake hit the region of Petrinja near Sisak, in central Croatia. Both caused extensive damage to buildings and infrastructure and there were eight confirmed deaths in total. Common sense should be used around damaged buildings, which may not always be signposted, to avoid any falling brickwork.


Fires are common during Croatia’s hot and dry summers. Take care when visiting or driving through woodland and forest areas. If you see a fire, call the emergency services on 112. If affected, follow the advice of the local authorities.

In summer months, there is a ban on outdoor fires, and barbecues outside of designated areas. Properly extinguish cigarette ends, do not light barbecues outside of designated areas and do not leave any rubbish, particularly empty bottles behind, as these are known to start fires. Intentionally causing a fire is considered a criminal offence in Croatia and can result in a prison sentence. There can be large fines for unintentionally causing a fire.


Flash floods can occur with very little warning and can lead to dangerous water flows and disruption to transport and other networks. You should keep a close eye on weather forecasts and follow the advice of local authorities.

Monitor media reports and follow the advice of the local authorities if a forest fire, earthquake, floods or other natural disaster occurs in your area.

As of 01 January 2023, the currency of Croatia is the euro. Croatian kuna will still be accepted until 15 January, but can be exchanged for euros at Croatian banks until the end of 2023.

Major credit and debit cards are accepted in most banks and hotels. Most ATMs accept standard international credit and debit cards.

Pounds sterling and US dollars are easily exchanged for euros. Only exchange money at reliable places such as banks and currency exchange bureaux.

If you’re abroad and you need emergency help from the UK government, contact the nearest British embassy, consulate or high commission. If you need urgent help because something has happened to a friend or relative abroad, contact the FCDO in London on 020 7008 5000 (24 hours).

Foreign travel checklist

Read our foreign travel checklist to help you plan for your trip abroad and stay safe while you’re there.

Travel safety

The FCDO travel advice helps you make your own decisions about foreign travel. Your safety is our main concern, but we can’t provide tailored advice for individual trips. If you’re concerned about whether or not it’s safe for you to travel, you should read the travel advice for the country or territory you’re travelling to, together with information from other sources you’ve identified, before making your own decision on whether to travel. Only you can decide whether it’s safe for you to travel.

When we judge the level of risk to British nationals in a particular place has become unacceptably high, we’ll state on the travel advice page for that country or territory that we advise against all or all but essential travel. Read more about how the FCDO assesses and categorises risk in foreign travel advice.

Our crisis overseas page suggests additional things you can do before and during foreign travel to help you stay safe.

Refunds and cancellations

If you wish to cancel or change a holiday that you’ve booked, you should contact your travel company. The question of refunds and cancellations is a matter for you and your travel company. Travel companies make their own decisions about whether or not to offer customers a refund. Many of them use our travel advice to help them reach these decisions, but we do not instruct travel companies on when they can or can’t offer a refund to their customers.

For more information about your rights if you wish to cancel a holiday, visit the Citizen’s Advice Bureau website. For help resolving problems with a flight booking, visit the website of the Civil Aviation Authority. For questions about travel insurance, contact your insurance provider and if you’re not happy with their response, you can complain to the Financial Ombudsman Service.

Registering your travel details with us

We’re no longer asking people to register with us before travel. Our foreign travel checklist and crisis overseas page suggest things you can do before and during foreign travel to plan your trip and stay safe.

Previous versions of FCDO travel advice

If you’re looking for a previous version of the FCDO travel advice, visit the National Archives website. Versions prior to 2 September 2020 will be archived as FCO travel advice. If you can’t find the page you’re looking for there, send the Travel Advice Team a request.

Further help

If you’re a British national and you have a question about travelling abroad that isn’t covered in our foreign travel advice or elsewhere on GOV.UK, you can submit an enquiry, or contact us on Twitter or Facebook. We’re not able to provide tailored advice for specific trips.

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