Getting to Croatia by Ferry

Reaching Croatia by ferry is relatively straightforward – as long as you’re travelling from Italy, that is. The only international ferry services to Croatia are from there – no services exist from or to any other European country. (For those looking for the answer to an often asked question – sorry, there are NO ferries between Croatia and Greece.)

Getting to Croatia by Ferry

If you find yourself in a northern part of the Italian coast (say, Venice) and are looking to get to the southern part of the Croatian coast (say, Split or Dubrovnik), we would advise travelling down the Italian side of the Adriatic rather then the Croatian side. This is because you can utilise some of the high(er)-speed train services in Italy (you can look up train timetables on the Trenitalia website) to get to Ancona or Bari to then get a ferry across to Croatia. This would be quicker than travelling from Venice to Croatia, and then taking a slow bus down the Croatian coast.

You can take ferries (or catamarans) from the ports of Venice, Trieste, Ancona, Pescara or Bari to Croatia – which one you travel from depends on your final destination and the time of year. The only route that operates year-round – although it only operates a couple of times a week during winter months – is Ancona to Split with Jadrolinija.

See the following table for route and ferry company website details.

2016
From… To… Months Operated by
Umag July & August Venezia Lines
mid June – early September Adriatic Lines
Porec
end April – early October
mid June – early October Adriatic Lines
Pula June – September Venezia Lines
mid June – mid September Adriatic Lines
Rovinj end April – early October Venezia Lines
mid June – mid September Adriatic Lines
Rovinj
end June – early September
Pula
end June – early September
Hvar Town
end of July – early September
SNAV
(catamaran)
Stari Grad (Hvar)
end of July – early September
SNAV
(catamaran)
Split
All
mid April – mid October Blue Line
end of March – early November SNAV
Zadar June – September Jadrolinija
Stari Grad (Hvar)
mid July – mid August
end July – end August Jadrolinija
July & August SNAV
Dubrovnik
end of March – end of October

 

Getting to Croatia by Ferry – Online Booking

Booking for the above ferry routes to Croatia can be done below:

  • Morgan Allerton-Minnis

    My friend and I are looking to travel to Rogoznica later this year and I’m curious if ferrying from Italy is a viable option or if it’s much better to fly in to Zagreb and drive/bus/train from there? What would you advise to be the most efficient way to get there? Thanks!

    • Would you not be able to fly into Split (the closest airport)? If you were trying to travel from Italy (say, if you were trying to combine an Italy/Croatia holiday), then it would be best to take a ferry from Ancona to Split (see http://www.visit-croatia.co.uk/index.php/getting-to-croatia/travelling-from-italy-to-croatia/travelling-from-ancona-to-croatia/ for options) and then travel up from there. Otherwise, sure, you could fly into Zagreb and then either drive or take a bus from there.

      • Morgan Allerton-Minnis

        Definitely considering Split but the flight seems quite costly. But, perhaps when all the costs were added it would be the same as flying elsewhere and then adding the ferry/bus costs up. I’ll do the math and see what works the best! Thanks for your thoughtful response!

  • Bobbi

    My daughter & I would like to visit Venice and then travel to Dubrovnik in Sept 2016. What would be the best way to travel to Dubrovnik?

    • Depends how long you have! If not much time, then flying – Croatia Airlines and Volotea both have flights from Venice to Dubrovnik (not daily though). If you have a lot of time to travel between the two, then you could travel down the Croatia coastline in a leisurely fashion – with a combination of ferry (catamaran) and buses, and definitely spending a day or two in a few places i.e. not all in one go. Or, alternatively, you could travel down the Italian side of the Adriatic to Bari, and then get an overnight ferry to Dubrovnik…but, again, this isn’t the quickest of options although this could be done in a day (well, a day and a night).

  • geno

    hi there, we are looking to get from bari to dubrovnik around 3rd or 4th September 2016 but are coming up with nothing on any linked website. please can you advise if the route is still operating, when the schedule is likely to be released and how long in advance we can book. many thanks.

  • Ally

    Hi there – we are looking to catch an overnight ferry from Bari to Dubrovnik in mid-April next year (2016). The 2016 schedule isnt available yet, though the 2015 schedule indicates that sailings are 8PM Tue, Thu (and maybe Sat) at that time of year. Do you know if this is the typical schedule ie can we rely on this for 2016? Any idea when the 2016 schedule will become available (and when we can purchase tickets)? Thank you in advance for your help!

    • I can’t say for sure, of course, but it is quite likely that this schedule will be the same for next year. The schedule is usually only announced at the end of this year, I’m afraid! You should be able to buy tickets then (or early next year), but the sailing shouldn’t be too busy in April.

  • GL

    Hi, we are looking to ride motorbike (3 person with 3 bikes) from Rijeka to Split on 12 September 2015. From Split we would like to go to Florence. This route from Rijeka to Split has been highly recommended by a friend. It has the most beautiful coastline.
    Do we need to book in advance? as you mentioned in reply to one of the comments, there are promotions for motorcycle? Could you please share with us the information?
    Thank you!!

  • Kingannoy

    Will the costs of the ticket go up if we book last minute?
    I’ll be going from Zadar or Split to Ancona somewhere between 18 and 28 july but would rather keep the dates nice and open. I’ll be traveling with two persons and one (small) car.

    • Some of the ferry companies do have occasional promo offers but I don’t see any special fares currently (for what you’re looking for i.e. there’s an offer if you have a motorbike!). So no, it wouldn’t be the case that it’s more expensive if you book closer to the time.

  • Lerna

    Do you know if any of these ferries offer car transport services? I will have a car in Italy and need to get it to Split or Dubrovnik

    • You can take a car on board all of the above-mentioned Ancona-Split ferries (run by SNAV, Jadrolinija and Blue Line) and the Bari-Dubrovnik ferry (Jadrolinija).

  • Diane

    Hello! We would like to take a ferry from Dubrovnik (first choice) or Split to Venice on either Friday, June 12, or Saturday, June 13, 2015. Is there such a ferry? How long is the ferry ride? How far is the ferry terminal from Marco Polo Airport in Venice? We need to catch a flight at 11:40 a.m. What are the terminal names in these cities? Thanks so much for your help!

    • There are no ferries from either Split or Dubrovnik to Venice – sailings only exist from Istria (the northern bit of the coast) in Croatia to Venice.

      If you need to get from either of these two places to Venice relatively quickly, I’d suggest flying. There *are* flights from both, but they’re not daily…and I’m afraid there’s no flights on either 12th or 13th June from either Split or Dubrovnik to Venice.

      There’s a flight from Split with Volotea (http://www.volotea.com/en/ ) on Thurs 11th, as well as a flight from Dubrovnik that same day with Croatia Airlines (https://www.croatiaairlines.com/Plan-Book/Book-a-flight ).

      The alternative would be to sail from Split across to Ancona in Italy (see ferry company details above) and then take a train from here to Venice. It’s around 4 hours by train from Ancona to Venice, involving a relatively straightforward change in Bologna. There’s a shuttle bus close to Venice Santa Lucia station that takes you to the airport. However, again, you’d have to travel on Thursday 11th June as the overnight ferry on the 12th to Ancona + train up to Venice won’t get you there in time for a 11.40am flight on Saturday 13th…so you might as well fly on 11th June!

      • Diane

        Thank you SO much for responding to me so quickly. Now we are wondering whether there are some regional airlines that fly direct from London to Dubrovnik or Zagreb or somewhere else near Herceg Novi, Montenegro, our base for traveling around the region? When we google “LHR to Croatia or Montenegro” we only get the big airlines like British Airways. We are able to find flights from the US to London that we like but are having trouble with the rest of the journey. Are there regional airlines that fly this route? We will be traveling in June. Again, thanks so much for your help!

        • You’re welcome!

          There absolutely are flights from London to Dubrovnik (and Zagreb), as well as cities in Montenegro. I would suggest flying to Dubrovnik as it’s close to Herceg Novi and you’ll have lots of choice.

          You can see which airlines fly from London (Gatwick) to Dubrovnik on our website here – http://www.visit-croatia.co.uk/index.php/getting-to-croatia/flights-croatia-destination-airport/. British Airways and Easyjet are the only ones that fly daily during summer – the other airlines listed might also work for you depending on what day of the week you want to fly to. To be honest, I wouldn’t necessarily discount British Airways – some of the other airlines (Easyjet!) charge extra for baggage, so by the time you add on those costs, you might find the price is very similar!

          I believe that Montenegro Airlines (http://montenegroairlines.com/) fly from London Gatwick to Tivat on Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays (although, oddly, only Tivat to Gatwick direct on Fridays?) so this might also be another option for you to look into. Equally, you could also fly out with one airline and back with another – it depends on your plans in the region!

  • Nick

    Hi there,
    I need to get from Pula to Venice on 29th June; we had to book our hotels prior to the ferry schedules being released, and from what I can tell we’ve not been lucky now it has been released? I can’t see any ferries on a Monday, even from one of the other Istrian ports? Although the Adriatic-lines website isn’t working well for me, so maybe they are running a service?
    As this is part of our honeymoon I want to try and keep travelling as easy and stress free as possible, otherwise she might file for divorce before we’ve even got going!
    Any help would be great
    Thank you
    Nick

    • Hi there, you’re right – there’s no Venezia Lines sailings on Mondays in June from Venice to…anywhere! Adriatic Lines *do* show a service on their website on Monday 29th – if you’re having trouble with their site (and, admittedly, it does seem a little glitchy at present), I would suggest contacting their booking email enquiry address – booking.venecija@atlas.hr. Hope you enjoy your honeymoon!

      • Nick

        Hi,
        Many thanks for the reply!
        The website is displaying better now; I can see a sailing from Porec at 0730 or Rovinj at 0800?
        So my next question is how would you advise getting from Pula to Rovinj to make the 0800 sailing?
        Many thanks again
        Nick

        • Oops, sorry – I accidentally read you were going in the other direction! Anyway, no matter… There’s some early morning buses that you can take from Pula to Rovinj which take about 40-50 minutes.

          There’s a bus at 6.50am (arr. Rovinj at 7.30am) with Autotrans – https://www.autotrans.hr/. If you don’t want to cut it that fine (the bus station is about a 10 minute walk from the port) they have an earlier bus at 5.45am (arr. 6.30am). AP Varazdin also have a bus at 6am (arr. 6.45am) – http://www.ap.hr/?gid=13&aid=108 (website isn’t in English! But the timetable should make sense; the text below the times says “regular line runs daily throughout the year”).

          I’d probably suggest popping by Pula bus station and getting your tickets the day before – you can also ask then if there’s *another* bus around that time that might also work for you.

  • Clubcoco

    Hello, visiting Venice & Croatia in late April. Will there be a ferry running from Venice to Rovijn at this time. Thinking Bus from Rovijn to Zadar, few days. Then bus to Split for few days. Do you think this will work? (Travelling with a 3 yr old!!!)

    Cheers!

    • The Venezia Lines 2015 schedules are due to be announced any day now – but we can guess that they will be pretty similar to last year’s (see http://www.venezialines.com/schedules ). So, technically, there is a catamaran from Venice to Rovinj at the end of April…but it’s only once a week!

      Additionally, Rovinj to Zadar by bus is far (8 hours) and there’s not too many places along the way where it would make sense to stop and break up the journey. (There are of course plenty of interesting towns in between, but they’re generally too close to either Rovinj or Zadar to make sense stopping there for the purpose of ‘breaking up the journey’.)

      As an alternative, you could travel down the Italian side of the Adriatic – take a train from Venice to Ancona (journey time 4 hours, involving an easy change at Bologna). There are then overnight ferries to Split (unfortunately not to Zadar at that time of year) – see http://www.visit-croatia.co.uk/index.php/getting-to-croatia/travelling-from-italy-to-croatia/travelling-from-ancona-to-croatia/ for details, as there’s several companies that operate service.

      I guess it depends what you were planning overall from your trip, and what travel commitments you might (e.g. flying out of Split?)… You could easily just spend your time in the region of Istria which is beautiful! You can travel from Venice to Istria by bus – see http://www.visit-croatia.co.uk/index.php/getting-to-croatia/travelling-from-italy-to-croatia/travelling-from-venice-to-croatia/.

      Hope this helps!

  • j c s

    Travelling to hideout festival from venice end of june, what ferry route would be the best for this?

    • Well… There are only ferry/catamaran routes from Venice to Croatia are to ports in Istria with http://www.venezialines.com/ (2015 schedules not released yet, but likely to be very similar to 2014.) You could certainly use this to start your journey, but sailings *to* Croatia are in the late afternoon/evening, so most likely wouldn’t be able to continue your journey to Novalja for Hideout that same day.

      What would be better (although this depends on what time you arrive in Venice…assuming you are flying in!) would be to take a train from Venice to Trieste – see schedules at http://www.trenitalia.com (try and get one of the faster 1h 48min or 2h 5min trains!)…

      Then, from Trieste, take a bus to Rijeka – bus times at http://www.autostazionetrieste.it/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=19&Itemid=0

      …and then, hopefully, you will have made it to be in Rijeka by 5pm as there’s a direct catamaran to Novalja – http://www.jadrolinija.hr/docs/default-source/red-plovidbe/2015/9309-ljeto-2015-en.pdf?sfvrsn=2.

      There is also a daily, early evening bus from Trieste that goes to Zadar (arriving at 0.55am!). From Zadar, there are then buses up to Novalja but you would need to stay the night in Zadar and get these the next day. (Well, technically later the same day!)

      Hope this helps! Please do ask if you have any further questions.

  • ronaldo

    We need to travel in JUN 2015 from Italy to Split. I cannot seem to get booking information that far out. Are there ferries running from Ancona to Split in JUN?

    • There are ferries from Ancona to Split all year round (higher frequency in summer) although schedules for 2015 haven’t been released yet. Check again early next year!

      • ronaldo

        Thank you! Yes, I finally figured out the 2015 schedules were just not released yet. Looks like we will be heading to Ancona! Thanks again.

  • Berndt

    Is there any ferries from Italy to Croatia end of October and back to Italy November 5th?

  • zadranka

    Just be forewarned, Italian’s speak NOTHING but Italian. This is perfectly acceptable unless you are a port town that deals with tourists. We found this out the hard way trying to get from Ancona to Zadar. Brush up on your Italian, no matter how limited it’s almost guaranteed to be better than their English.

  • diane

    hi is there a car ferry service from venice to pula in the month of may

    • I’m afraid there isn’t a car ferry any time of year! The only ferry (actually, catamaran) routes from Venice are as detailed above, and the one to Pula only starts in June. However, the drive shouldn’t take too long – around 3 to 4 hours.