Driving in Croatia

Driving in Croatia is relatively easy as roads – including the motorway system – are of a very good standard. Since Croatia gained independence in 1991, there have been vast improvements to the country’s infrastructure (with many of the motorways built since then). Road signage is also very clear, and you shouldn’t have much trouble navigating around.

There are (amongst other routes) now motorways linking Zagreb to Pula, Rijeka, Zadar and Split along the coast and Varazdin in the interior, as well as sections within Istria. The main motorway south – to Dubrovnik – is currently constructed as far as Ploce, which is about 100km north of Dubrovnik (along the coast).

The most picturesque route in Croatia is definitely the Adriatic road (Jadranska magistrala – officially road D8) which connects Rijeka and Dubrovnik. Some people compare this road to the famous Highway 1 between San Francisco and just south of Los Angeles in California.* We would say that ours is prettier!

(*Although the webmaster can personally attest that this is a pretty awesome drive too!)

Driving in Croatia

You are unlikely to encounter any problems when driving in Croatia. Even if you do come into some difficulties, most local people will be more than willing to help you.

You’ll regularly come across petrol stations when driving, which all offer unleaded and diesel as standard.

If you need road assistance, the Croatian Auto Club Emergency Service will help you. Their telephone number is 987.

If you are hiring a car, and intend to do some driving to other parts of the region (or indeed, other parts of Europe!), make sure you check before travelling with your hire company that their car is allowed to go to those countries. If you’ve hired a car in Croatia, you should be allowed to drive into Bosnia & Hercegovina and Montenegro (although do please check); this is unlikely to be the case if you’re hired a car from outside of Croatia (such as Italy, for example).

Driving in Croatia – Regulations

Driving is on the right hand side of the road in Croatia. Overtaking is on the left.

It is compulsory for everyone in a vehicle to wear seatbelts.

Mobile phone use is forbidden when driving. Hands free devices are permitted.

The speed limit on lesser roads is 50 kph, 130 kph on the motorways – however please do pay attention to speed limits, signs and all road markings when driving.

It is against the law to drive with a blood alcohol content of more than 0.5g/l – however, better to be on the safe side and to not drink at all if driving!

You have to be at least 18 years old to drive a private vehicle in Croatia. There is a different minimum age if renting a vehicle – see our guide to Renting a Car in Croatia.

Driving in Croatia – Useful Information

The Croatian Ministry of the Interior have complied a useful brochure (that you may well pick up when driving in the country) on various road rules that also gives assorted tips and advice. You can see the brochure online here.

The Croatian Auto Club (Hrvatski Auto Klub – HAK) have produced an app for smart phones that also seems to be very useful. Available for iOS (iPhone) and Android phones, the app details live traffic conditions, webcam images of important road points, petrol prices, information about nearest points of interest (airports, campsites, ATMs, hospitals, pharmacies, tourist boards) and more. Further info on the app here.

Driving in Croatia – Motorways

As mentioned above, the motorway network in Croatia is pretty extensive and you may well find yourself driving on the motorway if driving down the coast (the motorway is slightly inland) from Rijeka to Zadar or Split or a bit beyond, or from Zagreb to the coast.

Driving in Croatia

On the A1 motorway close to Zadar

Motorways in Croatia operate on a toll system which is very easy to use. Upon entering the motorway, you take a ticket from the toll booth machine. When exiting, you present your ticket (so don’t lose it!) and you pay the person at the toll booth for the distance that you have travelled.

The amount payable is shown on an electric display, although the toll booth operator should speak a little English if you have any issues. Toll fees can be paid in cash (in Kunas, or in Euros if you have any) as well as by debit/credit card.

Toll rates can be found on the Croatian Motorways website. There are different rates for differently sized vehicles, and cars are in category I. Some example toll rates for cars (as of July 2017):

  • Zagreb to Split: 200 Kunas
  • Zadar to Split: 61 Kunas
  • Split to Dubrovnik (as far as the motorway goes!): 56 Kunas
  • Zagreb to Rijeka: 77 Kunas

Toll charges only exist on motorways in Croatia. Driving on all other roads does not incur any charges or payments.

A Croatian Motorways (“Hrvatske autoceste”) toll ticket

There are also frequent rest stops on motorways in Croatia. These can range from a very basic stop to park your can and where you can stretch your legs, to full service areas that will have a petrol station, snack shop, a little restaurant and perhaps even a small playground.

Petrol Stations in Croatia

Petrol stations (or gas stations) are easy to come by in Croatia, and you shouldn’t have any issues filling up your car. Most petrol stations are open from early in the morning to late at night (e.g. 10pm), although some on the motorways are open 24 hours. Debit/credit cards are readily accepted.

There are of course petrol stations on the islands too, although not many. Just be sure that you know where the nearest petrol station is if heading to one of the islands!

One of the largest petrol station chains is INA – you can do a search of stations on the website here.

Electric Cars in Croatia

We doubt you’ll be driving to Croatia with your own electric set of wheels, but it might be interesting to note that there are over 40 locations for charging electric vehicles. Electric car charging points are in locations including Zagreb, Pula, Dubrovnik, Zadar Vukovar, Labin and Lovran. Some charge points are in hotel car parks, and only available to hotel guests.

On a slightly different note, electric car enthusiasts might want to read up about the Rimac Concept One, a high performance electric sports car manufactured in Croatia.

  • I always find the Via Michelin website – https://www.viamichelin.co.uk/ – very useful for route planning. In fact, it estimates petrol costs for you!

  • Diana K Hews

    I would like to estimate driving distance to estimate gasoline use (I have to put together a budget for a trip). Can you recommend an easy to use website?

  • I wouldn’t say it is hard at all! Is there anything in particular you had in mind in terms of it being hard? You can obviously take the pretty coastal road, or take the inland motorway road (as far as it goes!) which is quicker by not scenic. Do note that you will cross a portion of Bosnia & Hercegovina when driving from Split to Dubrovnik – there’s no issue with this at all, but just keep your passport within reach as it will be checked twice when going through this portion of B&H.

  • Emma


    How hard is it to drive between Split and Dubrovnik with a rented car? From what I’ve read, it doesn’t seem too hard for a U.S. passport holder, but just want to confirm.

  • KC

    Thank you so much.

  • Sorry – somehow your reply was marked as spam by our comment system! (??!)

    Slovenia isn’t my area of expertise, but two things I would say are that 1) you’d need to buy a vignette for driving in Slovenia motorways (can be purchased before entering the country) and 2) on your way to Opatija, you might like to stop off here? https://www.postojnska-jama.eu/en/

    The problem with staying somewhere between Opatija and Split is that there are some places of interest near Opatija, and lots near Split…but not that much inbetween. Have you been to other places near Split (not Zadar) e.g. Trogir? Krka? Sibenik? If you haven’t, and you mention you haven’t been to Split itself, I’d almost be tempted to drive down to the Split region and enjoy two days there – even in Split itself. If not, perhaps somewhere inland (but not Plitvice) such as in Lika-Senj county: http://visit-lika.com/en?

    For the return back up the coast after Dubrovnik (in which you have three days, right??)…I’d almost be tempted to just do the drive up the pretty coastal road, taking your time, and stopping at whatever town takes your fancy. There’s places I could suggest but there’s not much point in suggesting too many places in Dalmatia, south of Split, that would then leave you with a really long drive up to Opatija. I think this would be an interesting way of doing things and you have the advantage of the time of year you’re travelling – it won’t be crowded, and you should easily be able to find accommodation wherever you stop.

  • Wow, thank you so much for your kind words! 🙂 I really appreciate it, that’s very nice of you. I hope you have a wonderful time in Croatia!

  • Kathy Apostolakos

    Once again, thank you for your help!! This is such a great service, especially because they have you to do it !! Appreciate your help and Soooo excited to get there and enjoy your beautiful country and people like you !

  • You’ll have a car so as you’re driving you’ll see plenty of guesthouses / B&Bs advertising “Sobe/Rooms/Zimmer”. I’d just stop at any place you think looks nice and there you go, you’ve found some accommodation! 🙂 The time of year you’re travelling – in the approach to off season – means there should be good availability and you shouldn’t have an issue with finding somewhere to stay. If, for whatever reason, you do, you can always head to the tourist office of the place you’re in and they will assist you with finding somewhere to stay. But, as I said, I don’t think you’ll have any problems.

  • Hi Maggie, where have you hired your car from – Croatia? Yes, if you wish to drive north in Croatia from Dubrovnik, you will cross into a small section of Bosnia & Hercegovina. You car hire company (assuming you’ve hired a car in Croatia) should be fine with you crossing into Bosnia. A vignette (which is the system some countries use for payment of motorway tolls) isn’t necessarily for Bosnia – in any case, the road isn’t a motorway there! Croatia does not use the vignette system for its motorways – instead, you get a ticket when entering a motorway and then pay when you exit – how much you pay depends on how far you’ve driven. Slovenia uses the vignette system but you don’t encounter Slovenia when driving from Dubrovnik to Zagreb…

  • Kathy Apostolakos

    You’ve been so helpful already I’m sorry to bother you again but have another question. We have some pre-booked accommodations for our trip next month, but wanted to remain flexible for some of the trip.
    If we arrive somewhere without reservations, what is the best way to find available accommodations? Besides going to booking.com or expedia ?

  • Magieinlondon

    Joining the conversation as I’m looking for some travel information!
    We’ve been travelling through Croatia for over 2 weeks now, from Zagreb and we arrived in Dubrovnik yesterday.
    We’re to drive back to Zagreb and as I’m looking at the different routes, all of them cross some international border.
    The car rental company said there’s. I problem to cross but we need to buy some vignette?

    Could you please kindly advise
    Many thanks


  • Kerrin Cronin

    Thank you for your advice. I should have mentioned that we have been to Croatia before (about 10 years ago). Already organised car pick up in Milan and drop off in Venice for this trip.
    This is where we are up to re our itinerary as we have changed a few things:
    17 & 18 Ljubljana (new experience) – anything to be aware of with this addition to our itinerary?
    19&20 Opatja
    21st (somewhere between Opatja and Split – we have already been to Zadar – can you suggest somewhere else to stay by the coast?)
    22nd Split – haven’t stayed here before
    23-26 Hvar
    27th-30th Dubrovnik (decided not to go to Kotor)
    1st – really after suggestions for the trip back up to Opatja ( we really love the beach/coast)
    4 Oct Opatja
    5 Oct Venice
    Thanks so much for your time on this.

  • Thanks for your kind words! 🙂

    It sounds like you’re renting a car in Italy (Venice) to drive over to Croatia? I don’t know if that’s set in stone/paid for already, because it may be better to head to Croatia first (train from Venice to Trieste, bus Trieste to Opatija) and from there you can rent a car. Your hire car in Italy may not allow you to take your hire car into Bosnia (there is a section of Bosnia you will need to drive through on the way to Dubrovnik, or Montenegro).

    If you hired a car in Opatija/Croatia, you could then do one way travel (and definitely be allowed to enter Bosnia as well as Montenegro) and then give your car in in Dubrovnik. There are then flights from Dubrovnik to Venice (there is on on 5th Oct with Croatia Airlines – http://www.croatiaairlines.com/ ) that would save you considerable time without having to backtrack the way you came.

    Either way…to actually answer your question (!) I would say from Opatija you are very well placed to drive down to the Plitvice Lakes National Park, where I would suggest staying a couple of nights (so you have one full day to visit and explore the Park). Then, I would make the easy drive down to Zadar for one night, and then down to Split for a night – potentially you could pop into Krka NP or Sibenik on the way.

    Five nights in Hvar sounds a little long to me, especially as it’s the time of year when the weather is becoming more autumnal, and tourism (particular in the islands) is switching over to low season. Sure, you may be lucky with the weather and it may be wonderful still (not that uncommon) but if it’s a little colder or greyer and therefore not beach weather, I’m not sure what else you’d do there for that long. (I mean, you can of course explore the island by car, but not sure you can stretch it out for so long!)

    With a car, you would need to go Split – Star Grad on Hvar (drive to Hvar Town if that’s were you meant??) then back to Stari Grad on Hvar to get a car ferry back to Split to then get another to Supetar on Brac to drive to Bol. With a car, it’s tricky (actually, impossible!) to do hopping from island to island – you basically need to go back to the mainland to get onto another island.

    If you’re on Hvar and decide against Bol, you can drive to the east of the island to get another car ferry from here (Sucuraj to Drvenik) to the mainland. And then drive down the coast to Dubrovnik for three/four nights (to include a day trip to Kotor).

    However, you do have a bit of time after Hvar, so maybe you could return to Split to do a bit more sightseeing in that region e.g. Sibenik or Krka (if you didn’t pop in on your way to Split).

    Anyway, hope this has helped provide some suggestions and has not confused you!! If you do have any more questions, do please ask!

  • Kerrin Cronin

    Hi this is a great forum. Great work! We are travelling to Croatia arriving by car in Opatja on 17 Sept and need to have the car back in Venice on 5 Oct. See below our current plan. Would love advice on where to stopover on the ??? nights. We would love to go to Dubrovnik and maybe Bol (and maybe Kotor in Montenegro). :
    17 & 18 Opatja
    ????? 19-23
    23-28 Hvar
    4 Oct Opatja
    5 Oct Venice

  • You’re welcome! Hope you enjoy your visit to Croatia!

  • Kathy Apostolakos

    Thanks again! Really appreciate your time & help!

  • That’s very good to hear! For Zagreb to Venice you would need to first get a bus to Trieste (quickest buses take about 4 hours – you can see bus times on https://getbybus.com/). Then from Trieste it’s best to get a train to Venice – there are numerous trains a day (journey time about 1.5-2 hours) and you can see train times on http://www.trenitalia.com/tcom-en.

  • Kathy Apostolakos

    Thank you so much for your help. After sleeping on it, that’s exactly what I did. Canceled Budget in Venice and did round trip Zagreb rental with Eoropcar. Will fly into London and on to Zagreb, then at end of our 2 weeks or so, will go to Venice. This will be Sept. 27. One more question now please if I could. At that time of the year, which bus company will get us Zagreb to Venice ? Appreciate your help!

  • I’m afraid I wouldn’t know if they make an exception for the Neum Corridor – I would suspect not. Could you maybe ask Budget in the States if they have an email address for the Venice office? I’m afraid I don’t know which car rental company most visitors *starting in Italy* use to visit Croatia. To avoid all these issues, why not take public transport from Venice to Croatia (to Istria e.g. Porec, Rovinj, Pula) – either by catamaran or bus – and then rent a car there instead? You will be allowed to drive in Bosnia/through the Neum Corridor, as well as taking the car onto ferries (should you want to). Potentially, you could drive all the way to Dubrovnik and return the car there, and then fly back to Venice (which would save you time). Croatia Airlines (http://www.croatiaairlines.com/ ) and Volotea (http://www.volotea.com/en/ ) both have twice-weekly flights from Dubrovnik to Venice.

    To answer your last question – a green card is proof of insurance for the car.

  • The slight issue is that there are plenty of interesting towns near to Porec, and likewise plenty of other interesting towns near to Split, but maybe not so many halfway between the two! (Meaning, you might have a very short drive first day before stopping for a night!) But no matter, here are my suggestions:

    1. Drive to Opatija (only about an hour and a half from Porec!) and stay the night there. Then drive to Plitvice – certainly a highlight of Croatia! – to stay a night there. Potentially, you could spend the night and then visit Plitvice (starting early in the morning!) on your third day. Then drive to Zadar and spend your third night there. Depending on how much time you have/when (what time) you need to reach Split, you could also stop in for lunch/a bit of sightseeing in Sibenik on your way to Split.

    2. OR…drive straight from Porec to Plitvice – this is obviously a much longer drive (3.5 – 4 hours). Stay the night here again and again visit Plitvice on day two. You could even potentially stay two nights in the region. Then, again, drive to Zadar to stay night 3 here.

    3. Drive Porec – Plitvice, stay the night. Visit Plitvice on day 2 and this time drive to Krka National Park (approx. 2 hour drive) to visit another National Park! You could potentially stay the night close to Krka, or even do the short drive to Sibenik to stay there. Potentially stay another night there and visit local towns e.g. Primosten during the day.

    I hope this has given you some options. Do let me know if you have any further questions!

  • Kathy Apostolakos

    We have the very same issue as Thais Penalber. Budget Rent A Car in the. States told us to call the rental location in Venice, but I never could get through on endless long-distance hold. I do know we can not put the car on a ferry, one of the only clear conditions. Bosnia is not listed as a country where we can take the car, but wonder if there is an exception for just that Neum Corridor. We cannot be first to want to go Venice to Dubrovnik and back. Do you by chance know of the most predominate car rental company used by Croatia visitors? Also, what is the green card ? Thank you in advance.
    Kathy A

  • Annette Lehane

    We are driving from Porec to Split in September 2017.. Have 3 nights to get there. Where should we stop along the way and what activities do you recommend along the way. Once in Split we are doing a 7 night cruise

  • You’re welcome. Yes, no bad thing leaving some places for a second visit! 🙂

  • Mina

    yeah maybe too ambitious! Might need to leave some stuff for a second visit! Thank you so so much! 🙂

  • Thanks for your kind words! 🙂

    Well, you’ve named six places (or eight, if you include the two island maybes) which is a lot for 7 to 9 days – you’ll basically be moving all the time and not really seeing! I’d definitely scale back quite a bit, and probably skip the islands especially as you’ll have a car so will be reliant on particular routes (and slower car ferries) for getting onto and off islands. I would probably do something like this: 2 nights in Dubrovnik, then drive to Split and spend three 3 nights there (include a day – quite a busy one! – visiting both Krka and Sibenik; potentially could also do a day trip to a local island but you may wish to leave your car behind in Split), then up to Zadar for 3 nights there, and do a day trip to Plitvice and also Sjeverni Velebit (not on the same day!). So that totals 8 nights and it’s quite a packed itinerary…but I as long as you’re prepared for that then it should just about be do-able!

  • Mina

    Coming to Croatia on September for about 7 to 9 days (we are starting in Dubrovnik but we don’t know where to end and when!). Group of 3, planned so far to rent a car and do Dubrovnik (+ maybe an island), Split + Sibenik (maybe an island too), Krka, Plitvice and Sjeverni Velebit. We are more the nature and hikes type than the towns/cities. Any recommendations to add to our itinerary? We will fly back from either Zadar or Zagreb depending on the route. PS: this forum is amazing!!!!

  • You’re welcome! Hopefully it is useful and not too much waffle! 🙂

  • Sandra Evans

    Thank you for your advice- very helpful!

  • Are you asking whether an International Driving Permit is required? There is unclear advice about whether this is actually required – normally, this may help if your home license is not in English, but may times this is never asked for when renting a car. You may wish to get one just in case as they’re not expensive.

  • You’re right, there are frequent buses from the airport to the main bus station in Split. There are also some local bus lines (which start at the *local* bus station – not the main one) which go to Kamen – there’s this one – http://www.promet-split.hr/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=72&Itemid=103 – which isn’t very frequent! (The times you see at the only times it runs i.e. 6.45, 9.20, 11.15 etc. I believe bus number 25 also may sometimes also go to Kamen from the main bus station – http://www.promet-split.hr/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=70&Itemid=101. Are you staying in an apartment? I would ask them the best way of getting to their place from the airport (or even just from central Split) as they would be able to advise you best on bus lines. In terms of renting a car – a) will you have easy parking where you’re staying and b) how much exploring in the region will you be doing to make your car worthwhile? I wouldn’t rent a car just for getting to the airport to the place you’re staying – I’d most likely then just get a taxi!

  • kenneth


    I have a valid Jordanian driving licence.

    Will I be able to use it in Split and Hvar?

    Thank you

  • Sandra Evans

    Hi, I will be staying at Kamen on the outskirts of split and flying into split airport. Not sure if I should rent a car or not. Have seen that there are plenty of buses from the airport to split, but how are the buses or taxi service to kamen? Very grateful for any advice. many thanks Sandra

  • Priyank

    Hi Aayush, me and my wife are also traveling in sep (1st week) and were checking on IDP requirement

  • Hmm, that’s not very clear at all! To me, ‘authorisation’ is given by the company hiring out the car – surely they let you enter Bosnia or they don’t? It may be that they’re referring to the Green Card – I’m certainly not aware of any document that gives you ‘authorisation’ aside from your car hire contract which would state which countries you can (and can’t) go into. If you did want to get a Green Card, you can do so at the Metkovic border crossing, which is not too far from Neum.

  • Thaís Penalber

    Thank you very much for your reply. Unfortunately the car company has not given us clear information over the phone, and we do not live in Italy. They merely said that the we won’t have a document that authorizes entering Bosnia, so if the border control asks for the document we could not enter. And then started talking about our responsibility if something happened to the car, that there are too many thefts in Bosnia,, blablabla. So we’re wondering whether we are actually prohibited from entering or if they are just saying that because they fear that something will happen with the car. Would you know anything about that authorization document that they mentioned?

  • Well, I would go back to the car hire company and ask them if they would let your travel through this small portion of Bosnia (a transit route, essentially). If they won’t let you travel through it, then you may have to take a a car ferry route bypassing the Neum corridor – there is a ferry from Ploce to Trpanj (http://www.jadrolinija.hr/docs/default-source/2017-red-plovidbe/633-en.pdf?sfvrsn=2 ) on the Peljesac Peninsula, from where you can drive down to Dubrovnik. (Btw, It is not possible to buy a Green Card at the Neum border.)

  • There are buses that travel from the airport (after 8pm, these are timed to coincide with flight arrivals) to the main bus station in Zagreb. You could take this and then take a taxi(s) from the bus station to your apartment, which shouldn’t cost that much as I’m sure the distance wouldn’t be far. I’m not sure if there would be a large enough taxi at the airport for all of you – there might or might not, which would mean you would have to take two taxis. If you want to guarantee a large people carrier, you may have to pre-book a taxi.

  • Thaís Penalber

    Hello, I’ll be visiting Croatian cities along the coast, and my family will have a rental car rented in Venice. The rental company said we could not travel to Bosnia with the rental car, but does that mean we cannot travel from Split to Dubrovnik? I could not find clear information on this regard, and if we need to buy a green card at the border, how much would that be? Thank you!

  • Vesta

    Hi I have a group of 5 adults arriving at Zagreb airport around 2230 hrs. Pls advise the transport options to take from airport to city centre. Would there be taxi that can take 5 adults with luggages ? thank you

  • Vesta

    Hi I have a group of 5 adults arriving Zagreb airport around 2230 hrs. Please advise what are the transport options available to take from airport to rental apartment in city centre. Would there be taxi that can take 5 adults w luggages?

  • This is a fair amount to cover in 8 days, but as long as you’re okay with moving around so much then I suppose it is okay. (It is low season so you won’t be affected by holiday crowds and too much traffic on the roads.) I would probably hire a car for the initial portion (Zadar to Split) and give it in in Split as it’ll be difficult to easily visit several islands on the way to Dubrovnik in such a short period of time.

    So day 3 you could visit Krka National Park on your way to Split. Day 4 you could head to Brac (to Milna) with this catamaran – https://www.krilo.hr/en/sailing-schedule/split-dubrovnik/. (It would be hard to include Bol, where Zlatni Rat is, in this itinerary as in late September there are no longer catamarans running Split – Bol – Hvar Town – Dubrovnik.) Day 5 would be Hvar (use same catamaran as mentioned) and then day 6 & 7 would be Dubrovnik (same catamaran).

    Btw, do note that the islands will be pretty quiet at this time of year as it’s off season, but there’s still things to see!

  • Divya Swarup

    Hello, My husband and I are traveling to Croatia end of September, for a week. We land in Zadar and fly out of Dubrovnik. We are looking at covering the following – Zadar, Pltvice Lakes, Krka national park (if possible), split – along with some island hopping to Hvar, Brac and Zlatni Rat (how many ever possible) and a day atleast in Dubrovnik before we fly out on day 8 late morning. We planned to hire a car for the week however I see it’s quite tricky in terms of length of time driving between the places and hard to plan – we are quite flexible on this. We thought of doing Zadar on day 1 and Pltvice lakes on day 2. Would you be able to suggest a feasible itinerary for the days 3-6 covering as much as possible from the suggested list of places, please? Day 7 I presume we’d be best off at Dubrovnik without missing it prior to flying out on day 8. Thanks in advance!

  • Yes, I think it would absolutely be best to rent a car to get to Orebic – there’s not all that many buses any time of year, and there won’t be any going late at night. October is off-season, so I would suggest a car would also be (as you say) a sensible idea for exploring the region. (Easy to do without the summer crowds!)

  • Natalie

    We are planning a short trip to Croatia from 7th October. We are flying into Dubrovnik and staying in Orebic. Can you suggest the best option for traveling out of season? Would it be easier to rent a car, especially for a late flight arrival?
    Also is there likely to be much happening in the resort this time of year or will we be thankful for a car to go exploring?

  • Hmm, good question – I’m afraid I have no idea. You’d have to ask at an agency when there to see if they would rent one to you!

  • mathias

    Hi im 16 and are traveling to croatia in one week. I have the licence for scooter in norway but does that licence work in croatia aswell? 🙂

  • Sure, most of the large towns / cities will have agencies from where you can rent bikes. Certainly mainly of the islands will too – a great way of exploring the islands.

  • Supriya Dsouza

    Hi.. We are a couple from India and we don’t drive.. We are planning to use the bus or fly from city to city but wondering whether we can rent bikes to get around each city to explore..

  • I would suggest:
    1. Definitely Airport transfer bus – easy to do, you will see the bus waiting outside the terminal building and it takes you direct to the Old Town. Much cheaper than taxi.
    2. Catamaran is the only way of going from Dubrovnik to Hvar Town direct – either with http://www.jadrolinija.hr/en/sailing-schedule/local-lines-2017 or with https://www.krilo.hr/en/sailing-schedule/.
    3. Catamaran again – with the above companies again
    4. 5. Where are you going to on Pag? Pag Town? There are only a couple of buses a day between Split and Pag. And then to go to Plitvice, you would need to first get a bus back down to Zadar to then head up to Plitvice. Is Pag definitely set in stone? (What are you doing there?) If so, I guess hiring a car for this portion would be easiest because it’s tricky otherwise.

    Not sure about the comment ‘not missing out on a good drive’ – sure, you could hire a car in Dubrovnik, drive it up the coast to Drvenik, take a car ferry over to Sucuraj on Hvar and then drive over to Hvar Town but this all adds in extra hours (and the issue of hiring a car). Then to get to Split, you’d need to drive to Stari Grad to get to the car ferry. Sure, the coastal road on the mainland is very scenic, but also very clogged with traffic in August! Not sure the hassle of all of this is worth it just for a ‘good drive’ – I’d rather the catamaran option detailed above!

  • As far as I am aware, as long as your license is in English, you don’t need to obtain an IDP. But you may wish to double-check the requirements with your chosen car hire company.

  • udit lekhi

    Hi, We are travelling in croatia in Aug. Our itinerary looks like:
    Dubrovnik 12th Aug 17 to 15th Aug 17
    Hvar 15th Aug 17 to 17th Aug 17
    Split 17th Aug 17 to 18th Aug 17
    Pag Island 18th Aug 17 to 19th Aug 17
    Plitvice 19th Aug 17 to 20th Aug 17
    I wanted to know reasonable (without missing out on a good drive ) transportation options for each city:
    1. Dubrovnik Airport to Old Town
    2. Dubrovnik to Hvar
    3. Hvar to Split
    4. Split to Pag
    5. Pag to Plitvice
    6. Pltvice to Zagreb
    What do you recommend (rental cars, ferry, train or cabs) for each of the intercity travel?

  • MeiPeng Lee

    hi there, i’ll be renting a car to drive in Croatia, most likely cross borders to Slovenia as well as Bosnia. My driving license (from malaysia) is in English. So do you think I will need the International Driving Permit? Thanks!

  • Thanks for your kind words! 🙂

    Your itinerary is a little on the packed side, but you do have three weeks and you’re also doing most of this in off season so won’t get caught up in summer holiday traffic. On the whole, assuming you are okay with doing this much, I’d say that the itinerary is great. In terms of renting a car only for some sections, well… I’d say having a hire car would, on balance, be easier for Zagreb – Rovinj and then definitely Rovinj – Zadar (otherwise it’ll take much longer by bus). At that time of year, heading to Krka would probably also be better by hire car so you’re not at the mercy of bus times in terms of how long you can spend in the park, and then also because you want to head down to Split from Krka. What you potentially could do is to then give in the car in Split, spend time there and then get this catamaran – https://www.krilo.hr/en/sailing-schedule/split-dubrovnik/ (which will still be operating daily) – over to Korcula, and then also down to Dubrovnik. But then from Dubrovnik, it would once again be better to hire a car. The part into Bosnia, then to Croatia, then to Slovenia, I can’t really advise on (I mean the non-Croatian parts) – I’m a little concerned that you’ll be faced with a pretty long drive from Sarajevo to Plitvice (and possibly even the Dubrovnik – Sarajevo bit, because you want to spend some hours in Mostar along the way) – is Sarajevo a must? Also, you’d need to give your car into somewhere (Zagreb, I guess) before heading to Slovenia so as not to encounter very high cross-border car hire fees. So the last part I would look at again to see if you definitely want to do all these parts – and specifically to consider how you will get from Plitvice to Ljubljana.

    Do let me know if you have any more questions!

  • Manju Mohotra

    We were fortunate to discover your informative page.
    We are planning a 21 day trip primarily to Croatia as per the itinerary pasted below. We are two couples in our early seventies, late sixties.
    Please do advise on the itinerary, add or subtract so that we get the best out of our visit.
    We were planning to rent a car ex Zagreb and drive all along. However we came across a few suggestions advising use of public transport rather than hiring a car. Undoubtedly, we will miss out on places that are off the beaten track.
    Please do advise on renting a car vs public transport. Could we let go rented car in a couple of sectors and opt for public means of transportation?
    23 Sep – Arrive Zagreb : 1230 hrs
    23 & 24 Sep – In Zagreb
    25 Sep – Zagreb to Rovinj
    25 Sep, 26 Sep, 27 Sep – In Rovinj – Explore peninsula – day trip to Porec & Pula
    28 Sep – Rovinj to Zadar
    28 Sep, 29 Sep – In Zadar
    30 Sep – Zadar to Krka falls
    30 Sep Oct – Krka falls to Split
    30 Sep & 01 Oct – In Split
    02 Oct – Split to Korkula (ferry crossings at Police and Orebic)
    02 Oct, 03 Oct, and 04 Oct – In Korcula island
    05 Oct – Korcula to Dubrovnik (ferry crossing at Domince to Orebic)
    05 Oct, 06 and 07 Oct – In Dubrovnik
    08 Oct – Dubrovnik to Sarajevo via Mostar
    08 Oct and 09 Oct – In Sarajevo
    10 Oct – Sarajevo to Plitvice
    10 Oct & 11 Oct – In Plitvice
    12 Oct – Plitvice to Ljubljana
    12 Oct and 13 Oct – In Ljubljana
    14 Oct – Fly back from Ljubljana:1140

    Thanks and regards,
    Manju Mohotra

  • 1. As far as I am aware, if you license is in English (which, as you say, it is) this would suffice. Yes, road trips in Croatia are perfectly safe – many, many travellers do road trips each year!
    2. I’m afraid I don’t have any car hire company recommendations – you can find plenty of reviews online e.g. TripAdvisor. I normally suggest to use a booking comparison site (Kayak, AutoEurope, Holiday Autos) to try and get the best deal.
    3. Well, sure, you can certainly cover a reasonable amount in 8-9 days! It just depends on what you actually mean by ‘major parts of Croatia’. There’s lots that you wouldn’t cover in that time (e.g. assuming you’re heading to Dalmatia, I wouldn’t also cover Istria). You trip can be as crammed or uncrammed as you make it – what were you hoping to see?

  • Aayush Kumar


    Me and my wife are planning a trip to Croatia (from India) in early September. A couple of questions:
    1. We were planning to do a road trip and rent a car from Zagreb airport. Would you know if an Indian driving license (which is in English) would work, or if we would need something like an international driving permit? Also, is a road trip in Croatia safe?
    2. Which car rental company would you recommend?
    3. We were planning to do an 8-9 days trip. Do you think that would good enough to cover major parts of Croatia, or would it be too crammed?

    Many thanks in advance!

  • Thank you for your kind words!

    It depends on what plans you have for your nine days in Dubrovnik! What are you planning to see, and how far are you planning to go? Or are you perhaps going to be making trips to the islands, where a car may be more hassle than help? (In terms of requiring car ferries.) I’m sure a ‘downtown’ location of a car hire company would be able to arrange the car you require, so you wouldn’t have to go to the airport. Have you looked into how much a car would be for the nine days? What would be the price comparison of nine days of car hire, versus a few days of car hire + 90 Euros in transfers?

  • Chris Stead

    Hello. What a wonderful forum.
    We are a family of four, arriving in Dubrovnik in July and staying there for nine days. We can arrange transfers to and from our apartment for 45 euros each way and we have an allocated parking space at the apartment. Do you think we would be better off hiring a car for the whole nine days or perhaps just a few days and if so, is it easy to hire a car in Dubrovnik rather than at the airport.

  • Well, a lot of places have good transport connectivity – depends on what you’re planning to do/where you’re planning to go! But I guess I’d say Split – great transport connections (bus, train, ferry, air) to many places in Dalmatia and elsewhere in Croatia.

  • As far as I am aware, as long as your driving license is in English that should be fine. However, it may be best to ask the car hire company you’re planning on getting a car from as they would be able to advise you best (on whether *they* require one).

  • nidhi

    hi ,we are travelling to croatia next week and planning to rent a car. do we need IDP or our indian or qatar driving license valid to drive in croatia.

  • nidhi

    hi , we will travelling to croatia next week. we are planning to hire a car and having qatar and indian driving license. do we need international driving permit or can we drive with qatar or indian driving license.


  • Yes, the distances seem fine, although have you missed out some days (you mentioned visiting Croatia for week). I’m also not sure about when you’d be doing a day trip to Cres as you mention reaching Krk, staying there, and then needing to return to Pula Airport – will you going direct Krk to Pula Airport? As for somewhere to stop at – if you stick to the motorway route towards Pula (largely the A8 motorway), there are some small towns not too far off the motorway that you may like – in particular, what about Hum, the smallest ‘city’ in the world? http://www.coloursofistria.com/en/destinations/istria/hum-the-smallest-city-in-the-world. Other alternatives would be Buzet (quite close to Hum), or Pazin (but a little less interesting) which is in fact the administrative centre of Istria.

  • Cherry Prendergast

    Hi, currently planning a week to Croatia in September. There are 4 of us flying to Pula, staying 2 nights, then driving to Opatija for 2 nights. We are then thinking of going to Krk for a night and taking a day trip to Cres to hopefully catch sight of a griffon. We will then need to get back to Pula to catch a return flight. The distances seem okay but we haven;t driven in Croatia before, does this seem doable in a week? We like to visit places off the beaten track, could you recommend a good stopover village (authentic local food/wine) when returning to Pula? Thank you in advance.

  • Thanks very much indeed for your kind words – they mean a lot to me, and definitely keep me motivated to answer everyone’s questions! 🙂 And there is no such thing as a silly question, in fact I found your question very interesting to answer! I hope you and your family have a lovely time in Croatia.

  • kelly

    thank you very much, your response has put my mind at ease already 🙂
    i have to add i am very thankful for this site (as the first time i visited it was luck i stumbled across it)
    i have read through many of the questions and answers you have here and its great how people like yourself take the time to answer everyone with as much helpful information as you do, even if some of our questions may seem silly (as im sure mine do lol). until my next query, take care 🙂

  • Both Plitvice and Krka are certainly possible as day trips from Zadar by public bus. (See https://getbybus.com/en/ for timetables.) If you don’t mind driving, however, I would probably take that option as you have the most flexibility in terms of how long you can spend somewhere (whether you choose to leave early or stay longer!) and you won’t be tied to bus times.

    Yes, both of those two other places are certainly good choices for day trips! Actually, we have a page on day trips from Zadar here: http://www.visit-croatia.co.uk/index.php/croatia-destinations/north-dalmatia/zadar/day-trips-from-zadar/. I’d certainly consider an (organised) trip to the Kornati islands. How about seeing what you feel like doing (or not…maybe you prefer to just relax!) when there?

  • Hi there, glad to have helped in the past!

    I’m not a customs expert…however, this is how I see it. Croatia is in the EU and you’re travelling from one EU country (Germany) to another (obviously, through other EU countries!). There are no customs controls *within* the EU (as long as the items you are bringing are for your own use – and they clearly are), and you shouldn’t have to declare anything. Take a look at this page from the European Commission website – https://ec.europa.eu/taxation_customs/individuals/travelling/within-eu_en which explains it a bit more. I don’t think they would care about any of the stuff you’re bringing; the one thing they may look out for from any traveller would be excessively large amounts of alcohol (and cigarettes) that are clearly not for personal use i.e. far too much for a person/family to consume themselves, instead an amount that is clearly intended for selling.

    Really, you shouldn’t have to declare anything as you’re travelling with in the EU. If for some reason you’re stopped at the border, most of the stuff you mention (tools, arts and crafts stuff, kitchen stuff, laptops, bathroom things) is clearly your own and for your own use. Even the food and alcohol should be fine (explain you’re coming for three months) – it is not uncommon for many European families to drive to Croatia for the summer with the cars filled to the brim with food/alcohol/personal stuff as they prefer to bring their own things than buy locally!

    Perhaps you could print out the page from the European Commission website? But in conclusion, I think you will be absolutely fine!

  • Thanks for your kind words! 🙂

    1) We are now in the peak summer season, so accommodation is definitely getting booked up. *However* you will still be okay to turn up and find accommodation when you’re there. Hotels may be booked up, but there will be private accommodation – you’ll see people offering private apartments (or even just rooms) at places of entry in towns/cities (e.g. bus stations, ports etc). If you have trouble finding something, you can always pop to the local tourist office and ask for help. But some of these places may be a bit basic – as you say, a place to sleep and freshen up – and may be low on facilities (TV, wifi etc). You can always ask to inspect a place before agreeing to take it.

    2) and 3) Where’s the non-commercial sea-side in Croatia in summer?! 🙂 Most places will be busy…but there are some locations that are a bit more off the beaten track (but not empty!). In my mind, I think having a car would actually assist you more – that way you can be totally free in terms of places you want to go to. If you didn’t have a car, sure, you could stick to buses but then these go from one large town to another. There’s local buses too, of course, but these may not be as frequent as you like, or you’d have to start planning your trip very carefully in terms of where exactly you could go. Having a car means you can go wherever!

    For places to explore – how about Nin (to the north of Zadar) which does actually have sandy beaches!! (And quite shallow ones, too.) There will be other vacationers there, of course, but it’s quite a long stretch of beach so I wouldn’t say you’d be fighting for space at all. Then other possibilities – there’s some islands off Zadar that you may also like to explore, such as Dugi Otok. These are ‘lesser known’ (certainly far less so than the famous Dalmatian ones of Brac, Hvar etc) so will be far quieter. However, it’s quite hard to get around these islands, so it would be best to have a car. Then, after these islands, you could drive down the coastal road to Split, perhaps stopping at some along the way.

    From Split, you could in fact give your car in (if you wanted to). Vis island may be a nice place to do a final visit – although it’s one of the larger islands, it’s the furtherest out from the mainland and was closed to foreigners until 1989, so tourism has developed different there.

    I don’t know much about naturism in Croatia, so can’t really help you on that point. However, this site (although it’s a bit old/not been updated for a while) lists some of the naturist beaches in the country – http://www.cronatur.com/beach.htm.

    I hope this helps. Do let me know if you have any further questions!

  • I’m not personally been there but have holidayed in Medulin “next door” and very much enjoyed my time there! Yes, I think Liznjan is definitely okay as a base, and by having a car, you also have the option of visiting other places. If you do get a car, I would recommend visiting Kamenjak Nature Park for a day – http://www.visit-croatia.co.uk/index.php/croatia-destinations/istria/cape-kamenjak/. (Obviously plenty of other things to visit/do in Istria too!)

  • Emma Connett


    My partner and I are flying to Zadar next week for a 7 night stay. We will be based in Zadar for the week but I am keen to see the lakes at Plitivice and Krka whilst we are there – would you recommend hiring a car or are buses suitable for day trips?
    Also, do you have any advice for other day trips from Zadar? I’m thinking about visiting Nin for a day, then there’s Pag, not to mention the islands to consider!! Too much choice!?!

  • kelly

    hello, this is the second time i have turned to this site for help/information, as the first time i was very grateful for the information i received 🙂
    we are a family of 5, 3 adults and 2 children preparing to traveling to croatia from Germany for 3 months with a car and caravan.
    i was wondering how i can find information on what i can take through the border and limits of items as i was stocking up on food and alcohol, shampoos conditioners (many bathroom items). many tools (hammer/saw/screwdrivers/nails/screws ect…), as i like to do my own DIY (Do It Yourself) on the caravan. our childrens arts and crafts gears (carving tools, hot glue gun, craft knife, scissors, ect…), alot of cutlery, knives/forks/spoons, pots/pans ect). laptop, kids tablets. we are basically traveling with our home as we are currently traveling indefinitely.
    while trying to stock up on more food i was recently told i would need to declare everything i am traveling with and there are limited amounts of things i can take through…. (everything would be meaning???? limits on??? how can i find if the items we are traveling with (everything in our home) will be ok to take through as i would hate to have everything we have been collecting through our travels to be taken from us. thank you for reading i look forward to your reply.

  • Aditya Singh

    Hi! I am so glad i came across this informative page where such good and personalized insights are being given. I have 9 night trip in Dalmatian region landing in Zadar on 17th June morning and flying out of Split on 27th June…We haven’t really been able to chalk out an intinerary yet and/or make any stay reservations. (1.) We basically intend to explore at a slow pace and soak in the local vibe (on a budget)…Is it easy and advisable in Croatia to get B&B’s or decent accommodation at last minute without paying huge money (since we would basically be turning up at the doorsteps of a random new hotel/apartment door almost every evening looking for a place to sleep). We are not fussy about accommodation and just need a place to sleep and freshen up in the morning.
    (2.) Any recommendations for the itinerary or the road trip. We do intend to stay away from the package tour route and stick to the non-commercial sea side and perhaps be able to chill on a shallow/sandy beach (i know its a rarity in croatia!) without fighting for a beach space with fellow vacationers. We dont mind doing island hopping from day to day and perhaps be able to explore some hidden naturist beaches. Intend to exclude Dubrovnik, Rijeka, Zagreb areas for this time. (3.) Would a car be really necessary to take for the complete part of our trip or perhaps we can manage to do it with hiring it only for a few days while travelling between coastal towns to be able to explore hidden sights and villages. Thanks a ton in advance for your tips and keep up the brilliant work that you’ve been doing to help people like me explore Croatia like a local!

  • Verity thornhill

    Thank you 🙂 Do you think Liznjan is ok as a base? I ‘walked’ round it on Google Maps and it looks nice.

  • Assuming that you’ll be wanting to see some of the sights of Istria rather than just wanting to stay put in Liznjan, I would recommend hiring a car, yes. Otherwise you’d most likely have to always travel to Pula first and then travel on to other places, which may be a hassle.

  • Verity thornhill

    We’re thinking about staying in Ližnjan for a week with our two children. Do you think it would be best for us to hire a car rather than rely on public transport?

  • Sure, there are plenty that have multiple locations in Croatia and will let you easily do one-way car hire. I’d suggest checking a travel search comparison website (e.g. Kayak, Holiday Autos, Auto Europe) to get the best price.

  • Steven Storey

    Hi. Myself, partner and a couple of friends are flying into Dubrovnik on 22nd June, we are staying in the area for five nights than driving up to Split for 6 nights to visit the lakes and Islands. My question is are there car hire company’s where you hire a car from Dubrovnik and leave it in split as we are flying into Dubrovnik and flying out from split

  • This is a lot to cover in just one week – you’re planning a lot in just six days (day seven is flying home?). You’re planning 2 nights in Dubrovnik, but want to see Kotor, Mostar and some islands – this would all take one day each. (And you need some time to see Dubrovnik, no?!) Zagreb to Split is approx. a 5 hour drive – so I don’t think you’ll be able to see much of Zagreb as well as flying in that day and then driving down to Split. Truthfully, as I said, it’s a little hard to give advice as this is a very crammed itinerary…do you definitely need to head down to Dubrovnik? How about only going as far as Split and maybe visiting an island there, or doing something like visiting Plitvice on your way to Zadar/Split?

  • This should be a relatively straightforward route for you. It’s best to look up exact route details on something like the excellent https://www.viamichelin.co.uk/ route planning website. I can’t really answer about much to do with driving in Italy, but for Slovenia you will need to buy a vignette to drive on their motorways. This costs €15 for a one-week vignette (there is nothing of a shorter time frame) – do make sure to buy it at the border or before, as you could be fined immediately if you drive even a bit on the motorway without it. You will continue on the motorway once you cross the Croatian border – carry on on this road until it basically runs out (past Rijeka) after which you can continue heading south along the coast on the famous D8 (E65) coastal road. You’ll take this as far as Prizna, where you can take a ferry to the island of Pag (to Zigljen) – timetable here: http://www.jadrolinija.hr/docs/default-source/2017-red-plovidbe/335-en4651EF1E2E03FE366548405B.pdf?sfvrsn=2. The ferry costs 96 Kunas for your car and 17 Kunas for each person. Then it should be a short drive to your festival location!

    (As an aside – I assume you’re heading back to Venice Treviso/Italy after Pag? Otherwise you’ll encounter very high cross-border one-way car hire charges.)

  • Jamie Chan

    Hi there,
    My husband and I are travelling to Croatia 2nd week July and we plan to rent a car and drive down from Zagreb to Dubrovnik. Our flights and days are fixed, so we have to plan around these fixed days.

    Here’s our rough itinerary:
    Day 1: Zagreb to Split (2 nights in Split)
    Day 2: Split, Zadar
    Day 3 Split to Dubrovnik (stopped by Ston)
    Day 4: Dubrovnik (planning to go Kotor, Mostar, go out for island hopping – but unsure which islands are worth going to)
    Day 5: Dubrovnik (2 nights in Dubrovnik
    Day 6: Not sure where we can go as we plan to take a flight back to Zagreb for our flight the next day and we have already covered Zagreb prior to these days
    Day 7: Fly home from Zagreb

    I would really appreciate if I can get some advise if the itinerary make sense and where else can I explore on my extra day


  • Meshach McDonald

    Hello, me and a group of friends are traveling to the Island of Pag this summer for a festival, we will be flying into Venice Treviso, renting a car and driving through Italy and Slovenia to Croatia and finally to the Island of Pag. Can you give any advice on best routes, toll charges, ferries and anything else to know for making this journey?

    Really appreciate any advice…

    Thank you,

  • You’re welcome! Hope it wasn’t confusing! 🙂

  • FrankieM

    Thank you very much for the advice!

  • The itinerary looks good! However, two things I would say are that it looks a little Split heavy – you’re spending five nights there (I appreciate you’re making day trips whilst there!) versus two in Dubrovnik. Also, do you definitely need a car for the whole time? You’ll probably find it most flexible to visit Plitvice with a car, I agree, but you don’t seem to need it for much else. (Unless you definitely want to do the drive Dubrovnik – Split! You could otherwise take a bus, or even travel by catamaran between the two. If you did the latter, you could in fact go Dubrovnik – Hvar – spend a night there – Split and therefore visit Hvar in this way.) You could rent a car just for a day from Split to visit Plitvice. But these are all minor points, maybe I’m overthinking things. 🙂 As I said, your itinerary looks fine as it is!

  • FrankieM

    Hello, me and my girlfriend are visiting in June are were thinking of the following itinerary. Does this sound reasonable?

    Day 1: land early in Dubrovnik, explore
    Day 2: another day in Dubrovnik
    Day 3: drive to Split in morning, day in Split
    Day 4: drive to Plitvice lakes
    Day 5: Explore Split
    Day 6: Trip toHvar
    Day 7: relax in Split
    Day 8: Fly back

    Thanks for any info!

  • You could ask Dubrovnik Tourist Office (http://www.tzdubrovnik.hr/ ); they also have a list of travel agencies (not all are car hire firms) at http://www.tzdubrovnik.hr/lang/en/news/gm_putnicke_agencije/index.html, but this is literally a list of agencies – their list of car hire firms may be the same. However, of those you have found online, I am sure some must be okay! What names have you come across? I sometimes suggest checking on a travel price comparison website (e.g. Kayak, Holiday Autos or Auto Europe) – these will also list the major international car hire firms based in Dubrovnik which you may prefer to go with.

  • Emi

    Thanks for your reply

  • Jason Dwarika

    Thanks,I have already read quite a few and cant find any that are good. I guess people are prone to review when they have a bad experience :(. I have however found that on other travels the tourism info/office sometimes have a list of rentals and tour operators hence why I asked.

  • Sorry, there’s no car hire agency I can personally recommend in Dubrovnik but you can definitely find plenty of reviews online!

  • Don’t worry, there is a *normal* petrol station on Vis, in Vis Town. I say “normal” as it’s run by one of the major companies in Croatia, INA, but it’s a very small station, as you can imagine – a little hut with a few pumps! But obviously it works the same as anywhere else. You can in fact see prices of fuel here: http://www.ina.hr/petrol-station-search/10012?benzid=246 – currently 8.46 kuna/litre for unleaded.

  • Jason Dwarika

    Hi there, I am travelling into Dubrovnik for 5 days at the end of this month and looking to rent a car. I would prefer to pick up and drop off at the airport but my main criteria is a recommendation for a Reliable and Honest agency. If you can help I would be very grateful!

  • Samantha Woods

    Hi there- I am a part of a team that will be traveling to Vis for two weeks for work, we are renting a car to bring over but and curious about how to refuel on the island and about how much it would be costing us. Any information would be greatly appreciated!!!!!

  • Yes, there’s definitely a good local bus service from Mokosica into Dubrovnik, right to the Old Town in fact. From Dubrovnik, you can easily visit the local islands of Lokrum (from the Old Town harbour) as well as the Elafiti islands (with Jadrolinija ferries – http://www.jadrolinija.hr/en/sailing-schedule/local-lines-2017 ), Mljet (with this catamaran – http://www.gv-line.hr/raspored1.php?linija=3 ) and Korcula (with this catamaran – http://www.jadrolinija.hr/docs/default-source/2017-red-plovidbe/9811s-en.pdf?sfvrsn=2 – although it would be quite a long day for you!). Alternatively, Elafiti islands/Mljet/Korcula can also be visited with on an excursion (obviously separate ones, not all in one day) – these can sometime be fun as well because some of the ships they use are special, or they serve lunch/a drink on board as well. As you have two weeks, a car might indeed be nice to explore a bit further afield for a few days – I’d suggest Cavtat (south of Dubrovnik) and the traditional towns of the Konavle region down that way; in the other direction you have Ston (famed for walls that rival Dubrovnik’s, plus oysters too!) and the Peljesac Peninsula, with its wineries. With a car you *might* even consider hopping over a border into either Bosnia & Hercegovina (Mostar) or Montenegro, but OTOH you may not wish to drive all that much in one day.

  • I feel that renting a car would be better for you if wishing to reach these places – you can visit Krka on an excursion, or take a public bus to Split, for example, but you’re at the constraints of the timings of these things (e.g. an excursion to Krka may leave early in the morning and last all day, which may be a bit much for your kids). For visiting Brac, I’d say you have two options – either a local excursion/boat transfer (ask locally to book, find out where on Brac they go) OR make the short drive to Makarska and get this ferry – http://www.jadrolinija.hr/docs/default-source/2017-red-plovidbe/638-enAAB0C2111A087BD8F2391441.pdf?sfvrsn=2 – over to Sumartin on Brac. I would explore consider exploring some of the other towns in the region e.g. Makarska, and also Omis which is further north along the coast towards Split.

  • Caroline

    Hi from Ireland, we are visiting Dubrovnik for two weeks in early june and are not sure if we should hire a car for part of our holiday, maybe 5 days to sight see or can we do enough without a car by visiting some of the Islands within easy access to Dubrovnik. We are staying slightly outside in Mokosica and there seems to be a good bus service from there into the City. We would love your advise on where to visit during our holiday.

  • Emi

    Plan to fly from/out Split at the end of May for 7 nights with husband and 2 kids(3,5 years old). Staying Tucep. I’d like to visit Krka national park, split and Brac. Could you tell me whether I should rent a car to travel these areas? Is there any other area would be good with kids? Thanks

  • I believe both of these licenses should be fine to use as long as they are in English (and I believe they are?).

  • Erwin Ubay Esquivel

    Hi, I’m planning to rent a car for a 6 days drive from Zagreb to Dubrovnic; I’m a holder of both Qatar & Philippines driving licenses; I’m I allowed to drive in Croatia? Hoping for your reply Regards

  • Aside from Dubrovnik itself, of course, you could visit the Konavle region (from Cavtat south) such as the traditional village of Cilipi, the pretty town of Cavtat, and then in the other direction, Ston and the Peljesac Peninsula (famous for its wineries). None of these places are far from Mlini at all so wouldn’t require a long drive.

  • Okay, at the end of this month the traffic/border shouldn’t be too bad. Skipping something in your itinerary would give you more breathing space, although then that means a drive from Dubrovnik to Zadar which is also pretty long!

  • Mick Dally

    I am arriving in Dubrovnik on 23 May and staying at Mlini. I have a car for a week and want to see some local life. I don’t want to be driving all day or every day. I would be grateful for some suggestions of places to go? Many thanks. Mick.

  • Pawan Thatal

    Thank you! I am visiting end of this month. I really want to see Dubrovnik and willing to waste driving one day but I will consider staying 1 additional night in Dubrovnik and skip Split

  • The main issue I have with this is the inclusion of Dubrovnik – it’s a *long* way from the Plitvice Lakes to Dubrovnik just for one full day there and then it’s a not too unsubstantial drive from Dubrovnik to Split. So of your 8 days, two are basically going to mostly be used for driving! Would you not prefer to use these days to visit places instead? I would skip Dubrovnik (I wouldn’t recommend both Plitvice and Dubrovnik for only a week’s visit) and head to the Split region after Plitvice. You could visit that city and region, and perhaps even head to an island? Also, what time of year are you travelling? Don’t forget issues such as traffic, or delays at the border (you cross a part of Bosnia when heading from Split to Dubrovnik or vice versa) if you’re there in peak season.

  • Pawan Thatal

    Hello, I have planned a cramped 7 nights in Croatia and wanted your advice if I have been greedy in trying to fit everything in.. Cannot change the flights but would be able to change the accommodations. Any advice is wholeheartedly welcome.
    Day 1 : Arrive in Zagreb early morning.
    Day 2: drive to Plitivice
    Day 3: See the lakes
    Day 4: Drive to Dubrovnik
    Day 5: Dubrovnik sightseeing
    Day 6: Drive to Split, overnight stay
    Day 7: Afternoon drive to Zadar
    Day 8: Late night 23:00 flight back home from Zadar

  • Jadrolinija run the car ferry routes from Split to Hvar and Korcula, but they don’t have one route from Split to Hvar to Korcula to Split – it’s either Split to Stari Grad (Hvar) or Split to Vela Luka (Korcula), meaning you’d have to return to Split if you wished to see both islands. Take a look at this map – http://www.jadrolinija.hr/docs/default-source/ostali-dokumenti/spl-en.pdf?sfvrsn=2 – to see the car ferry routes (the blue lines). Timetables can be found here – http://www.jadrolinija.hr/en/sailing-schedule/local-lines-2017 – and you can see prices on the link on that page depending on whether you are travelling in low or high season.

  • kate


    Can you advise information about taking a car on the ferries from Split to HVAR and KORKULA?
    Which ferry companies allow cars and how much is a round way ticket?


  • If it’s possible, I always recommend flying into once place and out of another so you can do a one-way route in Croatia and cover the most ground. If that is possible to you, I would suggest flying into Zagreb and out of Dubrovnik. If not and you need return flights to/from the same place, I would say Split is the best place to fly to – lots of places are reachable from Split (great transport connections). By and large you should be fine finding accommodation on a day to day basis in May as that’s still early season so it shouldn’t be that busy…as long as you’re relatively flexible in the kind of places you stay in. (Not that I’m saying places will be bad/poor quality, but some travellers might say ‘We have to have a pool, we have to have sea views, the room has to be large with contemporary furnishings’ etc!)

  • Penny Williams

    Hi: my husband, daughter and I will be visiting Croatia in May for 20 days. As we do everything on the fly and at the last minute, I will be booking our flights in the next day or so. Where would you recommend we fly into to be able to cover the most territory? We like to plan as we go, so how difficult would it be to find accomodations on a day to day basis? Or would you recommend we try to book rooms in advance for the entire trip? Thank you

  • First thing I’d point out is that you’d need to find somewhere suitable to park your car outside the (fully pedestrianised) Old Town – I would in fact recommend asking your accommodation about this, as they would be able to advise the best parking spot/garage etc based on where in the Old Town they are located.

    In terms of the motorway and tolls – the motorway works that you get a ticket when you enter the motorway which you present at the toll when you exit the motorway; the amount is calculated based on how far you’ve travelled. (So you wouldn’t be going through many tolls, just the one when you exit the motorway.) I believe you’d take the motorway as far as the Posedarje exit (the closest to the island of Pag) so the total you’d pay would be 112 Kunas. If you headed properly off the motorway (not just at a rest area) for a rest/food/sights, then you’d obviously pay as far as you’d travelled (e.g. to Split the toll should be 50 Kunas), then get another ticket when you rejoin the motorway and pay the remainder (i.e. 62 Kunas) at the Posedarje exit. I think heading off the motorway might add up the hours onto your drive – why not by and large stick to the motorway and then on your return journey to Dubrovnik, drive (at least some of) the coastal road? Then you can really see some sights/try some nice restaurants etc. For actual rest areas on the motorway, the one near Skradin (called ‘Odmorista Krka’ = ‘Rest area Krka’) has some spectacular views.

    There’s no issue with driving with a UK license, but you might like to peruse the advice from the RAC (http://www.rac.co.uk/drive/travel/country/croatia/ ). However, you’ll see there’s nothing out of the ordinary.

    The one thing I’d point out is that to get to the motorway from Dubrovnik, you pass a small bit of Bosnia & Hercegovina (the ‘Neum corridor’) so keep your passports to hand to show at border control. But the actual border crossing is no issue, and hopefully the actual crossing won’t be too busy. If you have time, why not stop in this bit of Bosnia to take some photos!

  • Craig McFadzean

    Hello, my wife and I are visiting Croatia at the end of June. We are flying into Dubrovnik Airport where we will hire a car before driving into Old Town to stay the night,. We then plan to drive to Gajac using the E65 route. Could you possibly advise on how easy this route is to drive and how many tolls we are likely to pass incl. how much the tolls would be? We are then going to Hideout Festival and then will drive back up to Dubrovnik on the 1st July for our flight. Also if you could offer any advice on driving in Croatia with a UK passport hat would be much appreciated. Thanks in advance

  • You shouldn’t have any issues with taking a hire car from Croatia to Italy, but I would suggest that you mention this to the car hire company at the point of booking just in case. Do note that you’ll have to drop the car off in Croatia (and it sounds like you’ll be doing this anyway) as otherwise you’ll encounter a very hefty one-way fee if dropping it off in another European country. As far as I am aware, your Indian license is fine for Croatia (you would have to check with others that know more for Slovenia and Italy!) – I understand Indian driving licenses are in English, yes? (If not in English, an International Driving Permit is recommended.)

  • If you’re planning on mainly doing day trips to the islands (and sightseeing in Dubrovnik itself) then you obviously won’t need a car, but if you’re thinking on heading further down the coast (e.g. a day trip into Montengro) or up (e.g. visiting the Peljesac Peninsula – home to Ston and wineries) that a car would be helpful/flexible! (Although obviously you could join organised day trips too, but maybe that doesn’t sound like the kind of thing you’d like to do on your honeymoon!) I’d suggest a few hours on the island Lokrum (very easy to visit from Dubrovnik’s Old Town) and the tranquil Elafiti islands. Mljet – part of which is one of Croatia’s eight national parks – would be a great place to visit too (although at this time of year, it would have to be on an organised trip, and the same goes for Korcula. However, if you had your own car, you could potentially head onto these islands by driving up to the Peljesac Peninsula and then getting car ferries across to them…but all of that might be a quite a lot to do in one day (and as you say, you’re also there to relax!). Anyway, hope this has given you some ideas!

  • Do you mean what items are you required to have in your car in case of breakdown etc? Oddly, I can’t find a suitable list from the Croatian Autoclub website, but there’s some info from the RAC: http://www.rac.co.uk/drive/travel/country/croatia/.

  • Ambika Pratiyush Swain

    Hello! I am in Zadar (Croatia) for two days, from where I plan to hire a car and drive to Trieste (Italy) through Solvenia and then go fromm Trieste (Italy) to Zagreb (Croatia) – CAN I TAKE THE HIRED CAR FROM CROATIA TO ITALY? Also, I have a Driving License from India – WILL THIS WORK in CROATIA, SLOVENIA and ITALY? Thanks in advance for the answer!

  • Susan Kuruc


    My husband and I will be arriving in Dubrovnik May 2 staying through May 7. What are the best day trips and/or islands to visit? This is our honeymoon so we want to see a lot but also want to relax and enjoy. Do you recommend renting a car (we have a parking space at our apartment).

    Thank you in advance!

  • Edward Sims

    I am hiring a car in Pula . What are the compulsory items I need to check .
    Examples: high viz jackets, first aid kits etc.

  • To answer your last question first – it’s every easy to travel by bus between all these places, and because you have quite a short period of time, that might be better. (To avoid hassles with a car such as parking. Also, when *in* these cities, you don’t need a car to get around, really.) This is a little bit of a cramped itinerary, tbh…I would suggest – if you didn’t mind all this travel in one day – to head out of Dubrovnik the same day as you land. (Or, any chance of changing your flight to arrive in Split or Zadar?) I would go as far as Split and then spend a few days there. From Split you can easily visit Krka on a day trip (by public bus). For Zadar, hmmm… It’s 2.5/3 hours from Split to Zadar each-way, so quite far for a day trip. Or if you travelled up to Zadar, stayed there and then returned straight to Dubrovnik, that’s about 6.5-8 hours by bus! I would suggest skipping Zadar for this trip (unless you can change your flights) and only doing Dubrovnik and Split (and easy day trips). You could take a bus up from Dubrovnik to Split, and then maybe do the return by catamaran (maybe stay a night on one of the islands) for the return journey for something a little different?

  • Some of these places can be very easily reached from Sibenik, so I would say that hiring a car would only be better for you if you wanted to be really flexible (in the times you get to places/leave places; how long it would take to get to these places – buses obviously make stops!; and maybe if you wanted to stop off somewhere a bit different along the way etc). For example, Krka is very easy to reach from Sibenik – there are direct buses to its entrances: https://getbybus.com/en/blog/bus-krka/. There are also many, many buses a day from Sibenik to Split, look up timetables on https://getbybus.com/en/. To Hvar you would first need to get a bus to Split and then a catamaran (it takes 1 hour) to Hvar Town – see http://www.jadrolinija.hr/en/sailing-schedule/local-lines-2017 for timetables. To Plitvice I would say having your own car *would* be easier as the buses aren’t well timed for a day trip – or you could join an organised excursion, of course. Final comments – are you based right in Sibenik, or is your accommodation on the outskirts? Because it might be a bit more complicated to travel into town to the bus station to then travel out. Secondly, does your accommodation have parking? If so, great, if not then having a car might be a hassle. On balance, I feel you may be happier having a car to do your day trips.

  • Natasha Jelley

    I am booked to go to Croatia for 7 nights, originally i was planning to stay in Dubrovnik for the duration but am now really wanting to do a little bit of travelling round and exploring. I land into Dubrovnik at 11am on 30th
    May and fly out around the same time from Dubrovnik on 6th June. My plan was to spend 30th-1st in Dubrovnik then to see Split on 2nd and try to fit in seeing Zadar morske orgulje and Krka national park before travelling back down to Dubrovnik on 4th or 5th. Firstly does this sound realistic and do-able? Secondly I am stuck on my decision of how to travel renting a car is looking like a good choice price wise but i am a little nervous to drive a car for that distance in another country would i be better off traveling by bus between them all?

  • Steph

    Myself and my husband are staying in Sibenik in June for 9 nights….how would you suggest is best for us to see some of the sights (day trips), would it be best to hire a car? Ideally we would like to go to Hvar, Split, Krka National Park and possibly Plitvice Lakes National Park.

  • Thanks for your kind words! Pula is a bit of a ‘blip’ in your trip (in the sense that it’s not really near anything else/is a bit of a detour) so I would miss it out (if you have only 10 days), as nice as that place is, and spend more time in Dalmatia. Hmmm, when you say missing out, do you mean missing out on places to stop at/visit, or just missing out on the view from the drive? I wouldn’t say you’d be missing out by taking the catamaran route instead as you’d be visiting the gorgeous islands instead! You could perhaps visit another island as well as Hvar on your way to Dubrovnik.

  • Lauren

    Hi, I love all of your tips! I am flying into Zagreb in June and plan to spend a few days there before renting a car to drive around the country. I definitely will stop at Plitvice (and stay the night so I can see it in the morning without crowds, as you suggested to others). I’m undecided if I should drive all the way out to Pula. What do you think? I will make my way down to Split, as well as head out to Hvar. IF I take the catamaran to Dubrovnik, and turn my car in at Split, will I be missing a lot by not continuing to drive down the coast? I haven’t booked a flight out of Dubrovnik yet, but I’m thinking of having 10 days in the country.

  • I’d suggest just staying in the Dubrovnik region, really. A couple of days for enjoying Dubrovnik itself, and then the rest of the time making a few trips to other places nearby. Certainly a few of the islands would be great – Korcula or Mljet, or perhaps the Elafiti islands too. As you’ll have a car, you could hop over the border to Montenegro, or possibly even to Bosnia (Mostar). Heading up the coast to the Peljesac Peninsula, home to Ston (famous for *its* town walls, plus oysters!) and a number of wineries would also be a very suitable day trip.

  • Tariq al nahari

    Hi , we are visiting Croatia next week for five days. Our flight will land in/ leave from Dubrovnik and we are renting a car. How would you recommend we spend these five days?

  • You’re very welcome, thank you for your kind words. I hope you have a wonderful time in Croatia!

  • You’re very welcome, thank you for your very kind words! Hope all goes very well on your trip, and hope you have a wonderful time!

  • Mandreo

    Thanks thanks thanks!
    Not only have we rounded our trip plans in Croatia but were also able to but ferry tickets online thanks to your invaluable help! Superb. We’re all set now!

  • Laurel Bonfiglio

    Thank you for your humble advice! We are visiting Medjugorje as part of a religious pilgrimage. I was also thinking (since we will be in B&H) that we can spend a few hours in Mostar as well – kill two birds with one stone! I feel much better knowing that we won’t be kicking ourselves for not going to Krka (if that indeed does not end up happening). All-in-all, I’m feeling much better about the trip we have planned. I cannot thank you enough for your suggestions, honesty and astuteness! I really think with your suggestions and perhaps a bit of last-minute flexibility it will be a fantastic trip! Thanks again!

  • These four ‘locations’ are just about doable in 9 nights without it feeling like you’re just travelling the whole time, so it should be okay, as long as you do ‘one way’ travel (fly into one place and out of another). If you want to see Zagreb, you really would need (I believe) to fly into there (or out of there, I suppose, if you did the reverse of the following itinerary) as it doesn’t make sense to head there and then backtrack down to the coast to continue your holiday. So an itinerary would look something like this: fly into Zagreb (1 or 2 nights, depends on what time your flight gets in) – Plitvice (2 nights – might be worth it, so you can get to the park early on one day to explore before it gets too crowded) – Split (1 night) – take this catamaran over to an island: http://www.krilo.hr/en/sailing_schedule.html, perhaps Hvar? (2 night) – continue with same catamaran to Dubrovnik (2 nights) – fly out of Dubrovnik. You can adjust the nights a bit, perhaps take one out of the early part of your trip and allocate it to later on. Let me know if you have any further questions.

  • Andrea Burke

    hi, we’re looking to visit Croatia for 8 days (9 nights) starting May 27th. Our goal is to see Zagreb (just as part of a travel day), Plitvce lakes, Dubrovnik and visit an island. Is this too much? If not, how would you recommend we structure our trip? we don’t have any flights booked yet so we are flexible on where we fly in/out.

  • Truthfully, if you don’t think you’ll be back in Croatia anytime soon then yes, I think you will feel that you’ve missed out by not visiting Dubrovnik. Sure, absolutely, I don’t think it’s a problem at all to forgo Krka – you can’t do it all! But the drive from Plitvice to Dubrovnik is pretty far and will take up quite a lot of that day, so then I’m not sure about having just 2 nights for Dubrovnik (as one of those days will just be travelling). What is your reason for visiting Medjugorje? I don’t think it’s of that much interest to most travellers, really only to religious visitors. (Sorry – maybe that’s why you’re going?) But yes, you could then up to Bosnia after Dubrovnik and then head over to Split. Perhaps you could play it by ear as to whether you’ll have enough time to visit Krka when in Split.

  • Laurel Bonfiglio

    Boy… I am sure suffering some internal conflict about this one… Dubrovnik was high on my list 🙁 We don’t really mind driving that much (hence why we were happy to rent the car), but do you think that we will feel slighted having missed Dubrovnik. It was a destination that came highly recommended in all travel blogs/ forums/ books that I used. Would it even be substantial (though not ideal) to cut out Krka National Park in exchange for spending time in Dubrovnik? I know it’s far south, but the walls are something I was greatly looking forward to exploring. My thought process is that since we are already seeing one spectacular national park (Plitvice) that maybe we could (?) forego Krka? I’m sorry for my indecisiveness. I’m just not sure if we will be back in Croatia and I don’t want to miss the best of the best!


    We head out of Dubrovnik and hit Medjugorje/ Mostar and then head out to Split (to avoid having to come back south again after driving back to Split) Then maybe Krka would seem more feasible?

  • Does it come up with an error when you try to buy on the Jadrolinija website? That’s the only place online where you can buy their tickets for local routes. If it doesn’t work, you can buy tickets once in Croatia at any Jadrolinija office (see http://www.jadrolinija.hr/en/sales-points/croatia ) – perhaps when in Split or when you reach Brac? It should be fine to do this a few days in advance – and June isn’t absolute peak season yet.

  • Hmm, I’m still thinking this is far too much., not to mention that there’s lots of zig-zagging up and down (well, north to south and back etc) meaning you’re adding on boring hours of travelling by going back and forth. I would suggest skipping Dubrovnik – as great as it is – because it now seems to be a point in your itinerary that’s a lot further south/far away from everywhere else you want to go to. Yes, you’ll just have to come back another time! Also, the reason I suggest two nights in Plitvice is that in summer the park gets very busy. Getting there in the afternoon means you’ll almost certainly be stuck in queues to get in/get around; if you get to the region, stay the night, and then get to the park early (as soon as it opens) the next day, you’ll miss a lot of this. I suppose that same day that you visit Plitivce, you could then move on to the next point on your plan (not Dubrovnik!) if it’s close (e.g. Zadar?), so you wouldn’t need to stay a second night in the area. By missing out Dubrovnik you could add on something else in the north Dalmatia region, perhaps another island, or somewhere like very pretty Zadar.

  • Mandreo

    Thank you! Since our schedule is tight, I’m trying to book and buy car ferry tickets for car + passengers from Sumartin to Makarska on June 13, at 11, but I can’t do it online from Argentina. Is there any chance of doing this online in advance?

  • Laurel Bonfiglio

    Yikes! I had a feeling I had planned too much. We already booked flights into Zagreb (it was cheapest to fly in there from Cairo) and out of Split (to Florence). Perhaps we could amend to this:
    Day 1: fly into Zagreb/ explore city
    Day 2: we pick up the car at noon in Zagreb, explore Zagreb in the AM/ drive to Plitvice lakes in the afternoon
    Day 2/3: Plitvice Lakes (do I need two days for this?)
    Day 4/5: Dubrovnik
    Day 6: Krka National Park (stay in Split)
    Day 7: Medjugorje/ Mostar (we return the car this evening in Split)
    Day 8: Split/ Hvar
    Day 9: Split….
    Does that sound better? I adjusted as much as I could with everything that we already have booked :/
    I guess this just means we’ll have to take another trip back to Croatia sometime soon!

  • Yes, this is far too much for 8 days – you’ll basically be travelling all the time and seeing hardly anything! Also, how come you end in Split (rather then just heading all the way down to Dubrovnik) – do you already have return flights from there? And are your flights to Zagreb already booked? (Perhaps you don’t need to start there?) Also, in what month are you travelling?

    I would amend as follows: Zagreb (1 night) – Plitvice (1 night, but preferably 2 so you can enter the park early the second day) – Krka – Split (2 nights). From here, I would suggest either Bosnia OR Hvar on your way to Dubrovnik – I am struggling to see how you can do both. If you chose Hvar, you could actually give your car back in Split and then take the catamaran from Split to Hvar, then Hvar to Dubrovnik. Then Dubrovnik at the end, I would normally suggest at least 3 nights there but I suppose you could get away with 2. Even just this plan is a lot for 8 days, I have to say!

  • Laurel Bonfiglio

    Hello! We have an action-packed 8 days planned! Let me know if this does not sound feasible (I have a feeling it may not….)
    Day 1: Fly into Zagreb, explore Zagreb
    Day 2: Rent car midday and drive to Istrian Peninsula (perhaps closer – Rijeka – if Rovinj and Pula seem to far?)
    Day 3: Plitivce Lakes
    Day 4: Krka National Park/ Head to Dubrovnik
    Day 4: Dubrovnik
    Day 5: Pelijesac Peninsula (or Dubrovnik)
    Day 6: Medjugorje/ Mostar (in Bosnia & Herzegovina)
    Day 7: Hvar (Island/ Town)
    Day 8: Split
    Let me know what could/should be extended or shortened or if it sounds just right!
    Thanks again for your wealth of knowledge!

  • Yes, there are buses from both Split and Zadar to Plitvice (and back again, of course). There are some accommodation options very close to the park itself, or additionally some accommodation owners (of places further away) can drive you to the park (and pick you up as well).

  • The advice given by the tourist board is that International Driving Permits are required to rent cars in Croatia. However, I would say that as your license is in English, you’ll be fine – I’ve rented cars in Croatia with a UK license and have not been asked for an IDP or even had one, and likewise many travellers also don’t bother with getting one.

  • Carling

    Hi There!
    Is there public transportation from Split and/or Zadar to Plitvice National Park? And then from Plitvice to Zagreb? My main concern is travelling around the National Park to get to our accommodation without a rental car. Any insights would be greatly appreciated 🙂
    – Car

  • Shelley Wiebe

    Do I need a International license to rent a car. Or is my Canadian License O.K.

  • I would drive to Sumartin on the east side of the island of Brac, take the car ferry from there to Makarska (http://www.jadrolinija.hr/docs/default-source/2017-red-plovidbe/638-enAAB0C2111A087BD8F2391441.pdf?sfvrsn=2 ) and then drive down the coast to Dubrovnik. So no, you wouldn’t have to return to Split.

  • This would be very feasible, many people travel the gorgeous coastal road between Split and Dubrovnik! It’s around a 4-4.5 hour drive, assuming the traffic is not that bad. However, I would not advise trying to drive there and back in one day (not sure if that’s what you were intending?) as that would be quite tiring/not leave much time for Dubrovnik.

  • Mandreo

    I didn’t mention that we’ll be leaving Brac (Bol) on June 8, 2017.

  • Mandreo

    Back again! We will be staying 3 nights in Brac Is. (Bol) and then drive to Dubrovnik. What is the best route to take? Do we need to pass through Split again? We’d like to take the simplest option.

  • SF MakeUp Chick

    Hello –

    I’m planning on being in Split in June and want to know how feasible it will be to drive by myself to Dubrovnik. I want to be able to stop in various towns at my leisure. I am from the US so at least we drive on the same side of the road.

    Thanks in advance!

  • You’re very welcome!

  • Mandreo

    Right you are! Thanks a lot for your reply and reassurance!

  • Okay, I see – thanks for the clarification. This is still quite a lot to cram even in this time, I would say. I would suggest these alterations to your itinerary (I won’t comment on the Slovenia bit – best to ask a Slovenia expert!): a) I would drop Rovinj. It’s a wonderful town, but that’s a lot of travelling to this part of the Croatian coast (and then back inland) just for one day in Rovinj. That doesn’t make sense to me. b) From Ljubljana, I would then go to Zagreb and spend your sightseeing/visiting time then. c) From Zagreb, head to Plitvice – two nights there is great. d) From Plitvice, then head to Zadar; again, two nights is good there. e) Then to Sibenik – 1 night fine. f) Then on to Dubrovnik (return your car – you won’t need it in Dubrovnik). I would use three nights there, two is a little short for this amazing place. g) Then fly back from Dubrovnik to Zagreb with http://www.croatiaairlines.com/ – there is an early morning flight on the 7th – would this get you back to Zagreb in time for your flight out?

    Additionally – as you now have an extra night – why not stop in Split and see the amazing sights there?

  • I don’t think you’ll have any issue with the traffic signs! They are all very easy to understand – I think both your English and Spanish may come in hand (you might notice a few words/phrases similar to Spanish e.g. Centar for the centre of a town), and globally recognised symbols are also in use (e.g. P for parking). If you have GPS with your car, that’s great, but you may like to also use your smartphones…I’ve found that if I look at/download a map when my phone is connected to wifi, it that stores that map even if I don’t have a data connection, and I can still use it.

  • Poonam Kashelkar

    Flying into Zagreb on the 15th but have a week planned in Austria so v will b in Bled on 22nd, 23rd &24th Ljubljana, 25th Rovinj, 26th & 27th Plitvice, 28th Sibenik, 29th, 30th n 1st of May Dubrovnik, 2nd n 3rd Zadar, 4th, 5th 6th Zagreb. On the 4th we would be siteseeing n reaching zagreb only by late evening…we fly out from Zagreb on 7th morning

  • Mandreo

    Hi, here I am again!
    It’s about driving and language! We wonder about traffic signs in Croatia, do you think we’ll manage speaking Spanish and English? We have rented a car through Rentalscars and expect to have it with GPS for a more relaxed driving. But still, we’re concerned about getting into and out from towns like Sivenik or Zadar! Thanks in advance for your comments and/or suggestions!

  • This isn’t really an itinerary I would suggest – it involves a lot of travelling when time could be better spend enjoying! Where are you flying in and out of – Dubrovnik? Are you needing to get back to Dubrovnik after visiting Ljubljana? Are there reasons that you’ve picked these places and the amount of time in each – 3 days in Zagreb is quite a lot given the total amount of time you have.

  • Poonam Kashelkar

    Planning to come to Dubrovnik in early May. We are a family of 5 n are driving around. Can u suggest a good itinerary for 2.5 days in Dubrovnik, 3 days in Zagreb, half a day in Sibnik n 1 n half day in Ljublijana

  • Whether or not Zagreb is a good place to fly in and out of depends on where you’re planning to explore! However, for shortish visit of 8 days, it would be better to fly out of somewhere else e.g. Split or Dubrovnik if possible. If your license is in English, then you should have no issue with using it to rent a car in Croatia.

  • Tapish Agarwal

    I am planning to visit Croatia for 8 days in September end. I have a few questions. Is it ok to fly in and out of Zagreb? Is the Indian driving license valid in Croatia?

  • Whereabouts exactly are you planning to explore? I’m not sure I’d recommend travelling all that far by motorbike or scooter, unless you’ve a lot of experience with these (perhaps you have!), certainly along the main coastal road which will be very busy in July with holiday traffic. My preference would be car, even with parking considerations. But as I said, what is your itinerary? Could you also consider not renting anything and travelling by public transport?

  • Bim

    my girlfriend and i are heading over for the month of july, staying in podstrana. we’re planning on going to ultra festival and travel around the coast.

    would you advise we hire a motorbike, large scooter or car?

    i’ve read that scooters are free parking and easier when in the cities. but obviously cars are quicker. what would you advise?


  • Thanks for your kind words, glad you’ve found the info helpful! Yes, this does look much more manageable. I think you’ll have a great time!

  • Mandreo

    Thanks a lot! You’ve answered all our questions so far and helped us make decisions. Your advice was superb! We will fly Volotea Venice-Split, From Split we’ll drive to Zadar, Sibenik and Plitvice (3 nights) and back to Split to use a catamaran for a 2-night-stay in Brac and then a 3-nights-stay in Dubrovnik. It looks more sensible, doesn’t it?

  • That sounds like a good plan indeed! You’re very welcome but I think you came up with the appropriate plan more than I did! 🙂

  • Biswajit Chakraborty

    Thanks for your reply. We have reverse engineered our trip and instead of :
    Zagreb – Plitvice – Split – Dubrovnik – Zagreb, we will do
    Zagreb – Dubrovnik – Split – Plitvice – Zagreb

    We will take the flight to Dubrovnik on our way down south, while we plan to drive back up on our way back for this leg :
    Dubrovnik – Split – Plitvice – Zagreb.

    This drive should be manageable. And fortunately flights are available from Zagreb to Dubrovnik when we start the trip.

    Thanks for your responses. It really helped.


  • Aha, I see. And yes, 11pm is a pretty late arrival, so the hotel airport makes sense now!

    Indeed, there’s not many other options for getting back from Dubrovnik to Zagreb – train isn’t an option, and bus wouldn’t be any quicker (actually, it’s slower) or more convenient with kids! So unfortunately you might have to get an early morning flight…

  • Biswajit Chakraborty


    Thanks for your reply. To answer your few questions –
    Before we came with option 2 we had the idea to fly to Dubrovnik from Zagreb and back after covering plitvice. But now tickets aren’t available for a large group as ours. So we came up with option 2 to break our journey to Dubrovnik. And splitting that drive seems to be a good option now.
    On our way back yes we do have to take our flights back to U.K. From Zagreb. The drive from Dubrovnik to Zagreb is rather too long to do at a go with children so we do have to think about flying from Dubrovnik to Zagreb. The only problem with that is the flight timings which as you said are early morning or late night!
    Lastly the only reason we are putting up in the airport hotel on our night of landing is because we are reaching quite late in Zagreb around 11pm.

    Thanks for your response. We will try to see how we do our journey back to Zagreb without driving. But option 2 definitely seems a better one.


  • Thank you, I hope to help you too!

    Of the two, I would definitely pick option 2 as this itinerary is broken up a bit more (meaning, there’s not too much driving in any one go) and you get to see more of Croatia. The one thing I would normally suggest would be to look into flying back to Zagreb from Dubrovnik as the drive (IMO) is just too much to do in one go – and the flight is so much quicker (obviously!). However, I don’t think there are any flights (with Croatia Airlines – http://www.croatiaairlines.com/ ) that would suitable for you as they are either very early in the morning or late at night.

    Have you checked out all flights to Croatia for around that time? You can take a look at our page here – http://www.visit-croatia.co.uk/index.php/getting-to-croatia/flights-croatia-destination-airport/ – to see who flies where and when the routes start. I would check out if you could get flights instead to Split (some of the routes start in early April) if not Dubrovnik. From Split you can still visit Plitvice…and it seems like you’re only flying to Zagreb because that’s where you can get flights to. Or fly into one place and out of another? (You can do one-way car hire in Croatia.)

    Finally, if you still do end up flying to Zagreb, does your flight arrive late? If not, could you not drive to Plitvice the same day? (It’s a 2/3 hours drive.) I think staying in the airport hotel would be…rather boring! You could also make more of the day at Plitvice that day.

  • Really the only public transport route available to you would be to take a bus from Pula Airport to the main bus station in Pula, then a bus from here to Rijeka (many buses per day) and then another from here to Mali Losinj. There are a couple of buses for the latter leg, run by Autotrans: https://www.autotrans.hr/en-us/home.

  • Biswajit Chakraborty


    I am tempted to post my query on this forum after seeing so useful responses from Visit Croatia. We (2 families with 3 kids) are planning for a 10 day trip in Easter and we have the following options –

    Option 1:
    · Fly from UK to Zagreb on 07/04 night and stay at the airport Hotel
    · Next day drive to Plitvice for 2 nights
    · 10th morning drive to Dubrovnik(6 hours?). Flights are not available now or are really expensive(£1200 for 3 peopleL)
    · Stay in Dubrovnik till 16th morning and make day trips to local islands/places of interest
    · Drive back to Zagreb by 16th evening for an evening flight to UK

    Option 2:
    · Fly from UK on 07/04 night and stay at the airport Hotel
    · Next day drive to Plitvice for 2 nights
    · 10th morning drive to Split(3 hours?) and stay there for 2 nights and make day trips to Hvar etc.
    · Drive to Dubrovnik on the 12th morning(2-3 hours?)
    · Stay in Dubrovnik for 4 days and go to Korcula etc.
    · Drive back to Zagreb by 16th evening for an evening flight back to UK

    We are obviously tempted to go for Option 2 as it covers most of the places we want to visit in this trip. What would be your thoughts on this please and which one would you think is prudent?


  • LL

    Hi, I am traveling to Croatia on the 9th of April. I am flying to and from Pula (PUY) airport. My destination is a hotel in Mali Losinj. I was wondering what were my transfer options? To get a taxi will cost me 400 euros return and to hire a car for the whole ten days of my stay will be £150. Is there any means of public transportation to the island? Thanks in advance

  • nidhi

    hi ,
    Can you please name few good car rental companies in croatia


  • The route isn’t mountainous at all! I don’t know the UP too well, but I think it’s okay for motorways (I mean any motorways, not Croatian ones in particular). About a third of the route is also on a two-lane road once you get off the motorway. Overall, I think it will be fine!

  • Maria

    Here I am again! This is about highways in Croatia. We are renting an UP (WV) car. How suitable is it for driving in Central Croatia highways (from Zadar to Plitvice lakes)? Are these in mountains. Will this car be fine? Thanks

  • You’re welcome! Yes, please feel free to ask me any more questions.

  • Mandreo

    Thank you so much. I needed a knowledgeable opinion to make decisions! I might reframe our trip and consult you again!

  • As you’ve said, this is very ambitious! I would go back over the list of places you mentioned and cut it down by at least half – which places do you really, really want to see? Which can you do without? I would suggest either visiting the northern part of Croatia’s coast (Istria – Rovinj, Pula; Opatija, Krk) plus Plitvice (and you’d need a car to get from Istria to Plitvice) OR the southern part, Dalmatia (Zadar, Sibenik, Split, Brac, Hvar, Dubrovnik), NOT both…it will just be too much. As you’ll be in Trieste, you could hop over to Venice and take a flight down to Split with Volotea (http://www.volotea.com/en/ ). There is unfortunately no flight on the 7th June, but there is one on the 8th. From Split you can visit Zadar, Sibenik and Plitvice (car would definitely give you more more flexibility)…obviously not all in one day! Then from Split you can use catamarans to travel to Brac, then on to Hvar and then Dubrovnik. I’d said Sarajevo would be just too far to include in your plans (it’s not really advisable as a day trip) unless you were able to devote more time to it.

  • Mandreo

    We’re to senior ladies planning a 10-day trip to Croatia from June 7-16, from Trieste (Italy) to Dubrovnik. Hiring a car and dropping it in Split or Dubrovnik is a possibility, as is riding buses. We’ve picked some places like: Rovij, Pula, Opatija, Krk Is., Plivitce Lakes, Zadar, Sibenik, Split Brac or Hvar Islands, Sarajevo, Dubrovnik. We know it’s very ambitious and wonder if you can help us with this. Suggestions would be appreciated as to: Is the car really necessary? What places make the car unnecessary? Which islands are worth picking in such a short lapse? What about including Sarajevo in our tour? Many thanks! Maria

  • Cross-border car hire in Europe (meaning, picking up a car in one country and dropping it off in another) is very, very expensive (or not even allowed by some car hire companies!) so this is the issue that you’re running into. There’s absolutely no issues with hiring in Italy, driving to Croatia and then returning to Italy and this would definitely be a sensible solution for your travel plans. (The alternative would be to take public transport – bus, catamaran – from Italy to Croatia and then hire a car there…but you would have drop it off in Croatia as well if you were planning to return to Italy.) Yes, vignettes are required for driving on motorways in Slovenia (you could obviously drive on smaller roads to avoid paying for a vignette, but it’s not really worth the hassle!) and they can be bought at the border. Here’s some useful info on them: http://www.dars.si/Dokumenti/Toll/Methods_of_payment/Vehicles_up_to_35_t/Vignette/Questions_and_answers_about_vignette_312.aspx. A vignette that is valid for a week costs €15.

  • Pauline Crossen

    I am planning a trip to Lido de Jesolo, Italy at the end of June staying for 5 nights and then would like to drive to Pula and stay a further 5 nights. I am having problems trying to get a quote to hire a car picking up at Treviso airport and dropping at Pula airport. Do you know if there are any restrictions preventing me from being able to hire and drop off at a different airport location. Alternatively I might consider driving back to Treviso but would it be legal to drive into Croatia from Italy and back again to Italy? Also I have seen some discussion about a blue card for the drive through Slovenia on the way to Croatia and possible the return journey.
    Many thanks Pauline

  • Yes, you can definitely hire a car at Zagreb Airport. I would absolutely pre-book a car so you can get the type (make/model/size/transmission etc) of car you want – try one of the price comparison sites to get the best price. Wow, big question! I mean, yes, Dubrovnik is absolutely gorgeous and the ‘jewel of the Adriatic’ but you won’t be able to include it in your time-frame (unless you skip something else – Plitvice?) but in addition to that, it’s not really so convenient if you’re tied to flying in and out of Zagreb. I would also usually recommend at least three days for Dubrovnik. Why not come back to Croatia another time?

  • nidhi

    Thank you so much.
    Returning the hire car in split makes sense. maybe we can see more of zadar.
    can we hire car in zagreb airport and if yes,do we have book in prior
    Are we missing something by skipping dubrovnik

  • You should be fine renting a car with any valid license. There are a few sailings to Brac from Split – this catamaran to Milna (so, without your car) goes in the morning and returns in the evening: http://www.krilo.hr/en/sailing_schedule.html or you can use this car ferry to Supetar: http://www.jadrolinija.hr/docs/default-source/2017-red-plovidbe/631-en.pdf?sfvrsn=2. There are no morning sailings to Bol; you could get there by an organised excursion instead. This is quite a rushed itinerary overall – looks like you won’t have much time for visiting Zadar at all! (Why not skip it, in that case?) Also, could you not fly from Split to Zagreb at the end of your trip to save loads of time instead of having to drive back? (Return the hire car at Split Airport.) Not to miss – well, the main sights! Lots of amazing sights in Zadar (if you get the chance to visit!) including the main thoroughfare Kalelarga, the Forum, Greeting to the Sun and Sea Organ (latter two best at sunset/night); for Split, the Diocletian’s Palace area!

  • You can check out the route on Google Maps or Via Michelin (https://www.viamichelin.co.uk/) – basically, you’ll be driving down the (tolled) A1 motorway in Croatia practically as far as it goes and then crossing over into Bosnia at that point. It’s only about 40km of driving in Bosnia, you shouldn’t find any issue at all with roads there.

  • nidhi

    we are planning 6 days trip to croatia in 25th june 2017 and planning to hire a car from zagreb near airport. Following is what we have plannned

    day 1 and 2- 25th and 26th june-plitvice
    day 3- 26th june – plitvice to split via zadar
    day 4 -27th june- day trip to brac island from split
    day 5-28th june – in and around split
    day 6 29 -back to zagreb

    few questions:
    -how do we hire a car for self driving near to zagreb airport. Are other countries( indian or qatar) licence valid to drive in croatia
    -ferry timings to brac island fron split( morning) to brac and return to split (evening)
    what do you suggest?

    anything specific which shouldnt be missed in zadar and split

    thank you

  • Jack

    Im planning on hiring a car for 3 days in April to drive from split to Mostar. What is the route for this journey like and are Bosnian roads okay? Thank you! Jack

  • Yes, this seems much better. I would suggest as full a day as possible at Plitvice (plus driving back to Zadar) – perhaps I misunderstood your first message, but it sounded like you were going to spend just a morning in Plitvice and then still doing some sightseeing etc in Zadar that same day. Additionally, Trogir would be more easily combined with Split as it’s a very short distance away from that city.

  • Car hire in Croatia isn’t especially cheap (compared to some other popular destinations), no. If you took the inland motorway route (well, as far south as the motorway exists!) it would take about 3-3.5 hours; on the gorgeous coastal route it normally takes about 4.5 hours but with the July holiday traffic it might take upwards of 5. I wouldn’t really recommend a day trip to Dubrovnik from Split (especially in the peak of summer – Dubrovnik will be packed during the day); I’d suggest doing an exciting day trip closer to Split instead e.g. Krka National Park, or one of the islands.

  • Bobby

    Hi, me & 4 friends are coming to Split in July for 4 nights & are thinking about driving to Dubrovnik for the day, couple of questions:

    Is car hire reasonably cheap
    How long would it take us to drive from Split > Dubrovnik


  • Hinesh Mehta

    Thanks a lot for your reply. I think you are right regarding the car being more hassle! We will take the catamaran from Split to Hvar OR Korcula and then onto Dubrovnik which allows more time in each place as well. Plitvice – only planning a day trip but would you recommend more time there? So it would be something like this which is hopefully sensible!

    Day 1 – Zadar
    Day 2 – Plitvice
    Day 3 – Zadar and Trogir
    Day 4 – Split
    Day 5/6 – Hvar/Korcula
    Day 7-9 – Dubrovnik

  • Yes, it will be more hassle having a car and trying to get onto those islands, as there are very few car ferries that go from one island to another – most go from the mainland to an island. You would have to do something like Split to Stari Grad on Hvar, then either return to Split and drive down the coast OR drive across Hvar to Sucuraj to get the car ferry to Drvenik on the mainland, then drive down the coast and up the Peljesac Peninsula to Orebic to get the car ferry to Korcula, then back to Peljesac and drive down to Prapratno to get the ferry to Mljet, then back on the same ferry to drive down to Dubrovnik. Phew! (Here’s a map of car ferries – http://www.jadrolinija.hr/docs/default-source/ostali-dokumenti/spl-en.pdf?sfvrsn=2 – the blue lines.) If you really wanted to visit all these islands, much better to use this catamaran from Split that calls at Hvar, Korcula and Mljet on the way to Dubrovnik – http://www.krilo.hr/en/sailing_schedule.html (2017 schedule should be same as 2016). BTW, this sounds like a very packed holiday – it seems like you’ll be doing a lot of travelling and not much actual enjoying of places! (Only a few hours for Plitvice?)

  • Galina

    Yes, just visiting for a week. Thank you for the reply!

  • Hinesh Mehta

    I’m planning to hire a car at Split Airport on a Monday afternoon in early June, drive straight to Zadar and the next day in Plitvice followed by another half day in Zadar before returning to Split (maybe via Trogir). I know the car won’t be much use for Zadar town itself but is preferred for Split-Zadar-Plitvice-Zadar-Split. I then plan to spend a day in Split before heading onto Dubrovnik via 3 days in Hvar/Korcula/Mljet. I want to know how easy and necessary it is to keep the car from Split to Dubrovnik (one-way fee will apply) and travel with it by car ferries to the islands and Dubrovnik. Is it more hassle with the car? Do I need to book these car ferries well in advance? Is it really needed?
    Thanks for your help!

  • Do you mean just to visit Croatia? (As opposed to moving to Croatia and registering your car in the country?) I don’t believe there are any restrictions on age (and 2001 isn’t that old a car!) for visiting with your own car. Diesel is regularly available at all petrol stations.

  • Galina

    We are coming to Croatia with our own car, Opel Zafira, diesel, model year 2001. Are there any restrictions for the age of the car or the fuel it runs with?

  • If you took the A1 motorway from near Split (Dugopolje entrance) to as far as it goes (the motorway ends near Ploce! You then need to switch to the coastal road) then the toll costs 49 Kunas for a standard car. If you drove on the coastal road between Split and Dubrovnik, then there are no tolls to pay.

  • Derek

    my family is arriving in Dubrovnik and spending a week in Split before returning to Dubrovnik for 7 days (July 2017).

    What is the cost of tolls on the roads to and from Dubrovnik/Spli?

  • Bus links from Split are great! Unless you were planning on visiting somewhere that’s quite off the beaten track (meaning car would be easier), I would stick to buses. (And ferries/catamarans too if you’re visiting the islands?)

  • Mike

    Am staying near Split for 6 days – would I need a car to get around that area or are their good bus links around

  • I think it would be quite difficult for you to find a car to rent – more agencies ask for drivers to be at least 21 and having held a license for at least 2 years. You would need to contact specific agencies to see if they would let you rent a car from them. But it’s quite easy to get around using public transport!

  • Hiu ming Chan

    hello im 20 from hong kong and holding a probitionary driving license for 8 months. can i drive in croatia ? thanks!

  • I would suggest that it would be trickier to rent a car because of your ages – it would still be possible, but you will have to pay a higher fee (as you say) because you are under 21. I wouldn’t imagine that your age would affect you being allowed to take the car to Italy (I mean, you should be fine to take it to Italy) but you would have to double-check the rules with the agency you choose to hire with. An Ecuadorian driving license should be fine to rent a car with. The International Driving Permit for Croatia is a tricky one – some say it is required for car rental in Croatia, but plenty of people (myself included) have a hired a car without ever been asked for one. You may wish to obtain one to be on the safe side as it’s not so expensive. Finally, what are your travel plans – do you definitely need to hire a car?

  • Carlo Banchón

    Hello, my friends and I are students from Ecuador studying in UK (our residence permits expire in August 2017) and we would like to rent a car for two weeks in Croatia in April 2017. Currently, we do not own a UK driving license although we have ours from Ecuador. I should mention our ages are between 19-20 years old, and we had had our licenses for more than a year. Will we be able to rent a car? Do we need a International driving permit or to obtain the UK driving license? We are aware of the young driver tax. Also, we would like to go if is possible to Italy with the car and return to Croatia with it. Is it possible? Are there any limitations because of our age?

  • This isn’t something I know much about, but perhaps try the companies http://www.gear.hr/en/, http://www.rent-a-gs.com/index.php/en/ or http://www.brabel.hr/en/. Good luck!

  • Finecitygirl

    Hello there, we are two, experienced, international motorcyclists who will be visiting Croatia next Spring. We are looking to hire two, small, motorcycles maybe 300-600cc ( not scooters, or, big heavy bikes). Please could someone sign post up to a local motorcycle hire place around Dubrovnik, or Split? Many thanks

  • Janet Silcock

    What car company charges £100 for the week please ?

  • Well, Split has excellent transportation links to some many places (by bus and ferry/catamaran, and also by train although this isn’t a useful way of getting around) so whilst you might want to spend 2/3 days for Split itself, you could stay longer if you wanted to do lots of day trips by public transport. (Organised day trips to islands/national parks are also of course possible.) Likewise, I’d say about 3 days for Dubrovnik, longer if you wanted day trips. You could then make your way between the two places either doing an island route (likely, via Hvar and Korcula) or just on the mainland. I’d say you have enough time to make a day trip to Plitvice from Split (by organised tour, or with your own car), and you could also visit Krka. From Dubrovnik, you could also visit Mljet (or stay a night along the way). You probably wouldn’t need to hire a car (unless you were keen to visit Plitvice or Krka by driving yourself) – certainly, if travelling via the islands, it’s better not to hire a car as it’s quite hard to get from island to island via the car ferries.

  • Mika

    I am thinking to visit Croatia. Priority will be to see Split and surroundingsand then head to Dubrovnik. If we have about 2 weeks and like to take our time to stroll cities, nature and get a taste of life there instead of focusing only the sightseeing-part of it all, what would you recommend? I would be curious for example to hear how long to spend in the city Split, Dubrovnik and if a car or local transportation is the smarter way to go.

  • Well, three weeks is a wonderful amount of time in Croatia! So if you’re starting in Zadar (and I’d certainly spend a few days there at the start – probably car-less, as there’s no need to have one in Zadar) I’d head up to Plitvice first and spend a couple of days there. You may want to consider visiting Zagreb as well, seeing as you have the time (about 2 hours north from Plitvice). Post Plitvice (or Zagreb), I’d then head over to Istria and base myself there for a good portion of the holiday – there are many towns and resorts to choose from (Pula, Porec, Rovinj, Medulin, Vrsar…) and you can then spend a good amount of time exploring this area, including the pretty countryside. (Istria is also well known for its wine and food, so you can certainly visit vineyards.) After Istria, I’d travel down the coast, stopping off to take a look at Rijeka and Opatija, and then continuing further in the direction of Zadar. In this region you also have the Northern Velebit and Paklenica National Parks, both quite mountainous. You could potentially stop off at the island of Pag (if you haven’t visited before) to check out the unusual landscape and also their famous cheese! (There’s a short car ferry over to the island, and then a bridge and the southern end.) In this region (on the mainland). Heading back along the coast, you can then head to Krka National Park, and then on to Split, before heading back to Zadar.

  • Andrea Jepson

    We have just had a very enjoyable holiday island hopping from Split and would now like to see more of Croatia, We intend flying into Zadar then picking up a car to drive to the national parks and maybe as far as Split before returning to Zadar. We would appreciate any routes which would take up to 3 weeks.

  • No, it’s a very easy crossing to go through (unless there are queues…depends on the time of year) and there’s nothing in particular to watch out for.

  • David Wood

    Besides paying the rental car agency a fee, are there any other complications to crossing the border(s) on the way from Dubrovnik to Split and back? Thanks.

  • Sorry, I don’t – although I have heard before Sixt don’t charge as much. Hope you are able to find a suitable company.

  • Jon Heyes


    Do you know which car hire companies do not charge for cross-border driving? We’re driving through Bosnia and Herzegovina on 3 of our 6 days here and most companies are wanting to charge us anything from €8/day (Sixt) to €75 for the whole trip (Avantcar)!


  • Opatija (close to Rijeka) is a very pretty place to stop for a few hours. Rijeka itself is bit more of an industrial city, but it’s still interesting for a walk around, a place to have lunch etc. I’d probably choose Opatija, howver.

  • Nutwerlal

    Hi…We are planning a trip to Croatia and I am planning to drive from Zagreb Airport to Umag…I know it takes around 3 hours via Rijeka so just wondering where would be a good place to stop/visit on the way to Umag

  • Sounds like a good plan! Thanks for your kind words – glad you’ve found the site helpful! Have a good trip.

  • Zahara

    Thank you so much! I think we will hire one to travel around, but then just walk around Dubrovnik. This is such a useful website and forum. Thank you!

  • Well, it’s easy to get from Zaton to Dubrovnik by local bus; this – http://libertasdubrovnik.com/wp-content/uploads/prigradski-zapad.pdf – shows you the local bus routes (map at the bottom of the page) and bus times. I’d say a car isn’t necessary for visiting Dubrovnik, especially as you’re then left with the hassle/cost etc of parking (and it can be a bit of a hassle in Dubrovnik sometimes!). Taxis from Zaton would most likely have to be called. But for exploring the rest of the region, such as Peljesac, Konavle, and going over the border to Montenegro would undoubtedly be easier with a car. £100 for a week doesn’t sound too bad!

  • Zahara


    We are going to Dubrovnik for 7 days next week and as well as exploring Dubrovnik, we would like to tour around and perhaps visit Montenegro too. We are staying in Zaton; Would it be worthwhile hiring a car, or are taxis and buses convenient and economical? It would cost us £100 to hire a car for the week…


  • It would be a pretty long day but technically do-able. If you use the motorway (or the motorway where it exists! Starts near Ploce above the Neum Corridor from Mlini) rather than the coastal road this will of course be quicker. I would estimate it would be 3-4 hours each way. I’d personally use the day to visit something closer to Dubrovnik/Mlini!

  • Pat

    We are coming to visit Croatia on our Holidays in September and are staying in Mlini in Dubrovnik, if Hiring a car how long would take to drive to split? Could it be done in a day and back?

  • That’s good to hear!

  • You’d really have to ask the hire company as they’re the ones that would (possibly) prevent you (or not) from renting a car because of this!

  • Cheung

    Hi! I have a HK licence and it is written in English. However it only shows expiry date but not when the licence was issued. I am wondering if it works for car rental in Croatia where 2-year driving licence is required? Or this 2-year rqeuirement is not strict at all?

  • I drove around 1000km/620mi on croatian roads this summer.

    Never found a single pothole.

  • I drove around 1000km on croatian roads this summer.

    Never found a single pothole.

  • I would suggest Dubrovnik to Split along the coastal road – take your time and enjoy the scenery! – then up to Zadar. Then from Zadar cut inland towards Plitvice Lakes National Park, and then finally to Zagreb. Does your 6 days *include* the time spent visiting both Dubrovnik and Zagreb, or do you have additional days for these places? If it’s the former (that’s a little crowded!), I might leave out Zadar and then just go Split to Plitvice direct.

  • Jitu

    I plan to visit Croatia in September and travel by car from Dubrovnik to Zagreb for about 6 days.
    Can you suggest a road route?

  • Ronak Doshi

    Hi Nitish,

    Couldnt reply earlier .. Just got back. The car rental company asked only for my Indian driving license however I had carried my IDP along. The license wasnt checked otherwise at any point, so Im unsure if thats sufficient.
    I would recommend taking the IDP – its quite easy to obtain one, at least in Mumbai.


  • The IDP is one of those grey areas – it is suggested that one obtain one for Croatia, but many people are able to rent cars without ever being asked for one. I have rented a car on an UK license (obviously in English) and was never asked to show an IDP. I don’t believe it is possible to obtain one in Croatia; I would ask your hire company about renting with just your Indian license.

  • Anuj Mittal


    I am travelling to Croatia from 26th July to 3rd August.
    I have a valid Indian Driving License in English.

    Unfortunately, i will not have enough time to get the IDP.
    Is it possible to get the IDP in Croatia or rent a Car with the Indian Driving License?
    Is International Driving Permit required for Indian Driving License?


  • Tim

    Thanks for you reply 🙂

  • You should be absolutely fine, especially as your (home) driver’s license is in English. Feedback is that many drivers never get asked to produce the IDP when renting a car; I’ve rented a car in Croatia (on a UK license) and wasn’t asked for one. (Just as well as I didn’t have one!)

  • Tim

    Hi, is an international driving permit required for New Zealand driver’s licenses? I can’t find this information anywhere. I actually don’t have time order one before we come 🙁

  • I think you’ve got lots to see! Struggling to add anything to your plan, really…! (I thought about potentially visiting an island in the Zadar region, but the car ferry will take too long for a day trip.) Anyway, enjoy!

  • DariusK

    Thank you for the suggestion, looks great! Yes we are not set on the route just planed out the general direction. That is why we thought to write here and get some suggestions what to visit. So any other suggestions would be appreciated ;]
    Thank you again for the input! We really want to make the most of the trip.

  • DariusK

    Thank you for the suggestion, looks great! Yes we are not set on the route just planed out the general direction. That is why we thought to write here and get some suggestions what to visit. So any other suggestions would be appreciated ;]
    Thank you again for the input! We really want to make the most of the trip.

  • DariusK

    Thank you for the suggestion, looks great! Yes we are not set on the route just planed out the general direction. That is why we thought to write here and get some suggestions what to visit. So any other suggestions would be appreciated ;]
    Thank you again for the input! We really want to make the most of the trip.

  • DariusK

    Thank you for the suggestion, looks great! Yes we are not set on the route just planed out the general direction. That is why we thought to write here and get some suggestions what to visit. So any other suggestions would be appreciated ;]
    Thank you again for the input! We really want to make the most of the trip.

  • DariusK

    Thank you for the suggestion, looks great! Yes we are not set on the route just planed out the general direction. That is why we thought to write here and get some suggestions what to visit. So any other suggestions would be appreciated ;]
    Thank you again for the input! We really want to make the most of the trip.

  • DariusK

    Thank you for the suggestion, looks great! Yes we are not set on the route just planed out the general direction. That is why we thought to write here and get some suggestions what to visit. So any other suggestions would be appreciated ;]
    Thank you again for the input! We really want to make the most of the trip.

  • DariusK

    Thank you for the suggestion, looks great! Yes we are not set on the route just planed out the general direction. That is why we thought to write here and get some suggestions what to visit. So any other suggestions would be appreciated ;]
    Thank you again for the input! We really want to make the most of the trip.

  • DariusK

    Thank you for the suggestion, looks great! Yes we are not set on the route just planed out the general direction. That is why we thought to write here and get some suggestions what to visit. So any other suggestions would be appreciated ;]
    Thank you again for the input! We really want to make the most of the trip.

  • DariusK

    Thank you for the suggestion, looks great! Yes we are not set on the route just planed out the general direction. That is why we thought to write here and get some suggestions what to visit. So any other suggestions would be appreciated ;]
    Thank you again for the input! We really want to make the most of the trip.

  • Okay…well, sounds like you’ve got quite a detailed route and have the flexibility of a car so can go wherever you like; I would just not be *too* attached to the plan just in case! (e.g. as mentioned, summer traffic causes delays) As for day 5 – seeing as you’ll be in the area, why not consider Biokovo? http://www.pp-biokovo.hr/en/20/home

  • Nitish

    Hi Ronak, is it possible to rent a car on Indian Driving License in Croatia? Or does one need an International Driving Permit?

  • Nitish

    Hi Ronak, is it possible to rent a car on Indian Driving License in Croatia? Or does one need an International Driving Permit?

  • Nitish

    Hi Ronak, is it possible to rent a car on Indian Driving License in Croatia? Or does one need an International Driving Permit?

  • DariusK

    Thank you for your input. Well we like to drive and just get off on random beautiful spots look around and just drive to the next point. So that is why we are looking for more scenes routes, we don’t mind drive all day if we see beautiful nature ;] As for Ploce we just thought route 8 by the coast could be interesting, but basically we are not sure what to do on Day5 😀

  • This is a very detailed plan! I wouldn’t worry too much about trying to always make your route as scenic as possible, as you’ll end up spending a lot of time in your car at the expense of actually enjoying Croatia. Certainly on day 3 I’d just head the most direct route to Zadar; perhaps you could sightsee a little in the Plitvice area (I mean outside the park) if you wanted to do something else that day. (Although, really, I’d just drive straight to Zadar.) Also not sure what you’re planning on day 5 – why are you heading to Ploce? Overall, this seems like a lot of driving around, although it depends on what you’re planning for the rest of your stay (you mention visiting the islands). Don’t forget that July is peak season – the coastal road (as scenic and lovely as it is to drive on) can get very busy, so expect delays because of traffic…

  • DariusK

    We are planing a trip next week through Croatia by car. And would be interested in advise on routes, maybe there a re more scenic routes to take? This is what we have planed so far:
    Day1 – Pula to Samobor (E751 and then to E65)
    Day2 – Samobor(Slani Dol) to Plitvicka (Taking route through Mali Lipovec, Route1, day in the park)
    Day3 – Plitvicka to Zadar (Zemunik Donji) (Route53 to Senji, Route E65 to Trajektna luka Prizna ferry, Route106 and then through Krneza, Brisevo, Smokovic)
    Day4 – Zadar to Podstrana (Costal road Jadranska magistrala to Lozovac(day in the park) then to route33 toward the coast to route8)
    Day5 – Podstrana to Makarska (Route8 to Omis, then route on the right side of the river towards Kucice and to Zadvarje, Route39, Route60 to Imotska (short stop), Route60 to Route76 to Zagvozd, Route62 to Ploce, Route8 by the coast)
    Day6 – Makarska to Split (Route8 to Split airport to drop off the car before going on to islands (Brac, Jelsa, Starigrad, Hvar, Vis, Korcula, Pomane, Dubrovnik)
    Would be very thankful for the advice on this trip. We are also interested in visiting some vineyards along a way and other interesting places. We like nature over Cities so our trip is more nature based I guess ;]
    Thank you.

  • Hmm, I would take estimates from Via Michelin and then perhaps add on a bit too…! For Pula – Plitvice, I would suggest A9 motorway towards Rijeka, then A6 in the direction of Zagreb, then A1 in direction of Split, then take exit 7 to get on the D42 towards Plitvice. For Plitvice – Zadar: D1/D522 until you get to A1 motorway; take this south until exit 17 for Zadar.

  • Ronak Doshi

    Thanks a lot for the prompt reply.
    We took travel time estimates from viamichelin and google and thought that this will be a bit of a stretch but doable.
    Let me see what I can re-work.

    Any suggestions on what route is recommended for Pula to Plitvice and Plitvice to Zadar.


  • I’m afraid this seems far, far too crowded a plan – you basically want to do Opatija – Pula – Plitvice – Zadar – Split in 48 hours? Pula is the ‘opposite’ direction from Plitvice if setting off from Opatija; I also don’t think you’ll have any time (or much time) to visit Zadar after spending the day at Plitvice and then driving down. July is peak season so places such Plitvice will be very busy; likewise you might find some issues with traffic on smaller coastal (but very scenic) roads. They are wonderful places but I would skip both Pula and Zadar and drive Opatija – Plitvice; then after Plitvice I would drive to Split. Quite a bit of this driving involves motorways, so traffic should be fine. http://www.viamichelin.com is a good site for planning driving routes; I think you’ll be fine with a left hand drive car, just take it easy and you’ll get used to it in no time. Finally, can you not arrange to drop the car off in downtown Split rather than having to drive to the airport? (As it doesn’t sound like you’re ending your Croatia trip here…)

  • Ronak Doshi

    Hi Team VisitCroatia,

    I will be visiting Croatia and driving a bit in July second week.

    1) will be taking the car from Opatija around 8am.
    2) head to pula to see the amphitheatre
    3) then from pula to plitvice and rest at the apartment for the rest of the day
    4) will visit plitvice national park the next day
    5) after visiting the park, head to zadar
    6) do local sightseeing in zadar and rest for the day
    7) next day, head to split, offload luggage at our apartment and return the car at split Airport

    Need advise on this plan and the routes – opatija to pula, pula to plitvice, plitvice to zadar and zadar to split.

    Also, I’m coming from a right hand drive country and it will be my first time with left hand drive! A bit anxious about that too!

    Regards from India,

  • Ronak Doshi

    Hi Team VisitCroatia,

    I will be visiting Croatia and driving a bit in July second week.

    1) will be taking the car from Opatija around 8am.
    2) head to pula to see the amphitheatre
    3) then from pula to plitvice and rest at the apartment for the rest of the day
    4) will visit plitvice national park the next day
    5) after visiting the park, head to zadar
    6) do local sightseeing in zadar and rest for the day
    7) next day, head to split, offload luggage at our apartment and return the car at split Airport

    Need advise on this plan and the routes – opatija to pula, pula to plitvice, plitvice to zadar and zadar to split.

    Also, I’m coming from a right hand drive country and it will be my first time with left hand drive! A bit anxious about that too!

    Regards from India,

  • What sort of special permit? As long as you have insurance for driving in Europe, you should be fine.

  • John Roberts

    we are planning a driving trip next year to Croatia do we need a special driving permit to drive from England?

  • Lou Scott-Attrill

    Hi we are driving from the UK to Croatia this weekend, is there any advice? Also we are staying in the Vrsar area and I wondered if there is anything you could advise that would be suitable for a 10 year old to do. (apart from the beach). Thank you in advance 🙂

    • No particular advice apart from general stuff such as having your route planned well and not driving for too long a stretch…and getting vignettes for the countries that require them! (Austria, Slovenia) Here’s a good round-up of kid-friendly things to do in Istria from their tourist board: http://www.istra.hr/en/attractions-and-activities/children-and-family/entertainment. There’s an aeropark in Vrsar and you’re pretty close to both of the waterparks, although unfortunately Istralandia is only open on the 10th June. Perhaps the submarine (in Rovinj) might be fun too? I’d also recommend a boat trip excursion (just ask locally, or you should see them advertised) which should be fun for the whole family!

  • Traveller

    Hi! We are driving from Split (airport) to Brela during night time (leaving the airport around 9pm). Taking this time of the day into consideration, do you recommend taking the coastline road (Ivana Pavla II, according to Google maps) or the highway E65? We are not in a hurry (and would like to see some beautiful scenery) but do not wish to take a difficult route as a first driving experience there, either.

    • If you have the time, I’d always go the coastal route – definitely more enjoyable, even if you’re travelling at night (and can’t see the scenery as much)! It’s not a difficult driving experience, don’t worry (and your route isn’t a particularly long one in any case).

  • Jack Herron

    Hi Visit Croatia team,
    We are touring Croatia by car in August and one of our trips will be driving from Dubrovnik to Rijeka in one day on our way to Venice. Are there many places where we can stop to rest and eat on the motorway along the way and how long do you estimate this drive will take?
    Jack Herron

    • Yes, there are plenty of rest stops ranging from basic toilet/picnic area to a stop with a full restaurant, shop and perhaps even a little playground! You can actually see details of these stops on this map – http://hac-onc.hr/interaktivna-karta-autocesta- – not sure why there’s no English version! But click on the road you want under ‘Autoceste’ (Motorways), then where it says ‘Odmorista’ (Rest areas) click to expand that and then select ‘Prikazi sva odmorista’ (Show all rest areas) – or just click on the symbol for the rest area type you want. It’s not a route I’ve driven myself, but I’d estimate it to be 7-8 hours. It’s largely motorway, which shouldn’t be too busy even though it’s August…although the road from Dubrovnik to Ploce (and the border controls for Bosnia) will likely suffer from the usual holiday traffic.

  • Terence Lai

    Hi visit Croatia team,

    I am Hong Kong residence, and have International driving license. I will have a trip to Italy and Croatia for 2 weeks in May. My plan is to rent a car from Florence, and then take a cruise trip (together with the rental car) to Croatia, and then go back Italy at the end. Is there any problem? When I apply my IDP, I saw that Croatia is Not party to 1949 convention, International Driving Permit honored. Thanks for the reply in advance!

    • If you hold an international driving permit, then I would definitely bring it along when visiting Croatia! It is not normally asked for, but it wouldn’t hurt to have it with you. (IDPs are most commonly asked for if you’re home license is not in English/Latin script…sorry, I don’t know about the Hong Kong license?) I would let the Italian car hire company know that you’re taking the car to Croatia – they will let you do this, but it won’t hurt to tell them.

  • Jeffrey

    Hi visit Croatia team,

    I will be visiting Croatia for two weeks in early May. I applied for an international driving permit (with photo) but then not sure if Croatia is on the list of countries (it does not seem to be in the documents that I looked at). I do have a Hong Kong driving licence (with no photo), could you please advise if I am eligible for car rental?

    Are you aware of any issues with insurance?

    Thanks in advance.

    • An international driving permit would normally be required if your home driving license does not use the Roman alphabet. But if you have already applied for the international permit, why not bring that along too! Not aware of issues with insurance – what did you mean?

  • Syman

    Hi visit croatia,

    I will be traveling with a few friends soon to dubrovnik and we will end our stay in zadar. I am to understand that the travel is 8 hours by bus, so we were thinking about a car hire. However, my friend has a US driving license. I was wondering if it was possible to drive with this or if there is something we could apply for. We will travel in a ten days.

    • It’s no problem to hire a car in Croatia with a U.S. driving license.

  • Serg Alif

    I usually used this company http://naniko.com.am/en/car-hire-sarajevo-airport/
    They have low rates and new cars

  • Carmel Cuyler

    We will be spending a few days in Venice and then (maybe via Trieste) 4-5 days on the Istrian peninsula. We wonder about the benefit of having a car to do some exploring there, and also the possibility of driving to Plitvice Lakes for a day or overnight. We would then drop the car at the same place and ferry to Losinj to visit family after that. Does it make sense to have a car for a few days to explore? If so, how to we find and arrange a car beforehand? (Don’t want to reserve a car if it doesn’t make sense) Thank you.

    • Renting a car to explore Istria is a wonderful idea! There’s plenty to see in the area – as well as the famous coastal towns, the Istrian countryside is also very pretty and definitely worth exploring…and that’s really best/easiest done so by hire car. Additionally, it’s quite tricky to visit the Plitvice Lakes from Istria by public transport (although you could join an organised excursion), so driving there yourself would undoubtedly be much easier.

      In terms of arranging a car beforehand – see our page at http://www.visit-croatia.co.uk/index.php/travelling-around-croatia/driving-in-croatia/renting-a-car-in-croatia/ for a list of agencies. Or many major car hire agencies (Hertz, Avis etc) have offices in Croatia; alternatively, check out a price comparison site such as Kayak, Auto Europe and so on.

  • Moez Abdu

    A few friends and I are looking to rent a car for the day in Zagreb, but all of us have held a licence for less than a year despite being 18. Would this be a problem?

    • I think you will have a problem, yes – as far as I’m aware, agencies require drivers to be over 21 and having held a license for at least 2 years. Where are you trying to get to from Zagreb? You should be okay with public transport (bus).

  • Jack Hewison

    I have 5 points for a CD10 (careless driving) offence from this year. Would I be allowed to hire a car in Croatia? I cannot find any information online and I travel in 3 weeks to Croatia.

    • That’s probably a question for your car hire company as they would be able to say whether or not they would rent a car to you; I am not aware of any general restriction in Croatia that wouldn’t allow you to rent a car. Drop the comapny a line and see what they say.

  • wali


    Is it possible for a 19 year old to rent a car, who had his full UK license for 8 months?

    • Most companies require the driver to be at least 21 years old, and have held a license for at least 2 years. I am sure that you could pay an additional fee for being under 21, but I would imagine they’d still want you to have held a license for that amount of time. (Or, at the very least, one full year.) I suppose it wouldn’t hurt to contact a company or two direct to see what they say.

  • Dipak Khule

    Hi, I am planning to visit Croatia in 1st week of July. I have a valid driving license of India, but dont´t have international driving license. Will I be able to drive the car in Croatia ?

    • This is an odd one – as per the advice from the Croatian National Tourist Office, you do need an International Driving License to rent a car in Croatia. (See http://croatia.hr/en-GB/Journey-through-Croatia/Arrival?cFwyOTk%3d )

      In practice, you are very unlikely to be asked for it when picking up your car (obviously you will be asked for your normal driving license!), or – e.g. – if you happened to be stopped by police when driving. Many travellers to Croatia don’t obtain one before going and don’t have any problems.

      However, you may prefer to get one just to be on the safe side.

  • julie

    I’ve just booked a car from sixt car rental at pula in Croatia for September. We planning to drive into Slovenia for the day. was told we need a permission letter to do so and a surcharge of upto 15 euros. We also through Bosnia Herzegovina from split to dubrovnik, I’ve informed them about this but they haven’t mentioned anything about this. Do we need anything to drive through Bosnia Herzegovina or not, of course besides our passports. We have UK ppassports and UK drivers licence

    • The route through Bosnia & Hercegovina for those travelling down to Dubrovnik is via what’s called the ‘Neum Corridor’ – basically the little sliver of that country that gives it a bit of access to the coast.

      This corridor is essentially a transit route so you’ll be absolutely fine just driving through. (i.e. As long as you stick to this route and don’t travel off into other parts of B&H!)

  • Yukichi Ogata

    My friends and I are planning to visit Croatia and Slovenia next month for a week, I have a UK driving license and I’m 23 (I understand some companies charge differently for younger drivers). We’re on a budget and the cheapest option we found so far is a company called avantcar (£80 for the week) where we can pick it up from Croatia and return it in Slovenia. Was just wondering if you have any suggestions and recommendations for other companies worth considering? And anything worth noting when driving in these 2 countries? GPS rental also costs quite a bit….are there any SIM cards that can work in these countries and provide unlimited, reliable internet for gps instead? Thanks!

    • £80 for a week sounds like an amazing price, actually – I would have expected it to be much more expensive because of the one-way, cross-border car hire that you’re doing! (And, I suppose, because you’re a ‘young driver’). I had always found that one-way car hire across a border from Croatia (and some other places in Europe) was so prohibitively expensive as to not to bother with it!

      I guess a way to lower it further would be to rent a car (one-way) in Croatia, but drop it off there and then cross over into Slovenia using bus (or train)…but this all depends on what your plans are for the week.

      We have a list of some agencies here: http://www.visit-croatia.co.uk/index.php/travelling-around-croatia/driving-in-croatia/renting-a-car-in-croatia/ – although I’m sorry, I don’t know personally know if they’d let you do one-way car hire.

      Do you mean a sim card for your own GPS that you’d bring? (Or a sim card for a phone?) Sure – you could pop into any mobile phone store and ask them for a pay-as-you-go data sim (e.g. http://www.vipnet.hr/mobilni-internet/tarife-na-bonove; this one is one for phones that includes calls – http://www.tele2.hr/privatni-korisnici/welcome-to-croatia/?docid=224). They’ll speak English and be able to help you okay.

      However, you’ll be in two different countries (of course!) so you’ll have to do this twice…

      You’re UK-based, right? I think it would be far easier to sort out some kind of roaming sim in the UK that would work in Slovenia & Croatia – should be easy, as they’re both in the EU. Or, alternatively, you could just use your phone as a GPS – depending on what network you’re on, it can be pretty cheap (although you might have to call your network and set that up). I’m on O2 and last September in Croatia, I was only charged £2 a day (on the days I used it) for data on my phone, and I had unlimited usage (within reason, I’m sure!). Worked out great!

      The roads are of good standard in Croatia, particularly motorways which are all pretty new. They do operate a toll system (in most places – pick up a ticket when you enter, and then pay depending on how much of the road you’ve driven down). For the most part, signs are all pretty clear – it might just be once you get near a particular location that you’ll need GPS to actually find your destination. As you’re there in May, you shouldn’t have any bother from ‘holiday’ traffic which can be pretty bad during peak season (July/August).

  • Rachel

    We want to hire a car in porec/pula, but want to drive to Slovenia and Venice. But return the car to Croatia.
    Would this be possible?

    • It should absolutely be possible! Just do make sure your car hire company do let you drive the car into Slovenia & Italy – there’s absolutely no reason why not, but it’s always best to check that you have permission. Also, do drop the car back in Croatia (which you’ve said you’ll do anyway) as cross-border one-way rental, when allowed, is ridiculously expensive.

  • JC – US

    We are planning to fly into Austria, pick up a car rental and cross into Croatia to fly home from Split. Will it be difficult to cross countries with a rental car? We plan to get an IDP.

    • There shouldn’t be an issue with renting a car and driving it into (Slovenia first! And then) Croatia, but ultimately you would need to check with the car hire company to make sure they do allow the car to be taken into these two countries.

      What you’ll definitely have trouble with is one way car hire – they definitely won’t let you pick up a car in Austria and drop it off in Split/Croatia. You would need to return back to Austria to drop off the car.

      You can obviously use buses/trains to travel from Austria down to Croatia. You could do this to travel to Zagreb, for example, and then pick up a car here. (One-way car hire *within* Croatia is allowed.)

  • teoh

    we are coming from Singapore and both of us have Singapore driving license and Malaysia driving license. can we just use either of the driving license or we would need an international driving license?

    • This is one of those questions for which there seems to be so much conflicting advice – for both Croatia and other countries! I believe both of these licenses would be photocard ones and in English, and they would be fine to rent a car in Croatia. (You may wish to seek advice from the car hire company you are intending to rent from – I would imagine they would say your ordinary licenses would be fine.) I know some travellers get an IDP just for peace of mind, especially because it doesn’t cost too much.

  • Walt

    With a rental car, is an international drivers license required? I am from the US.

    • As far as I am aware, you do not need an International Drivers License to rent a car in Croatia if you have an U.S. license, and you won’t be asked to present one when renting/picking up your car. I have heard advice, though, that these come in handy should you – in the unlikely event – be involved in any kind of incident. (As in, having one means the paperwork etc will be processed quicker.)

      But many people come to Croatia and rent cars without having an international drivers license, so it is up to you!

  • Stephen

    Hi, looking for a bit of advice! Travelling from Split to Dubrovnik in August so considering wether to hire a car or go by bus? Would it be a lot more expensive for two people to hire a car? Also, if going by car is it better to book in advance (online as I’m in the Uk) or just waiting until we arrive in split? Any advice would be much appreciated!

    • It would be a bit more expensive, yes, and if you look up prices online, you might find that some agencies will charge you more if you’re picking up a car from a “downtown” location (instead of the airport) – I’m not sure if you’re literally flying into Split and then going on to Dubrovnik or not. Adriagate (http://www.adriagate.com/Croatia-en/Rent-a-car-Croatia ) is one company that seems to be priced the same regardless of airport/downtown pickup. Compare the prices on that site versus a bus ticket – it’s around 130 Kunas per person, one-way.

      If you’re literally just planning to go from point A to point B (Split and Dubrovnik!) then I’d say going by bus is easier and less hassle. Sit back and relax, take in the surrounding scenery and let the sounds of the Croatian radio station the bus driver has chosen to play wash over you. 🙂

      If you were planning on doing a bit of exploring and making some stops along the way, then of course renting a car is a better solution.

      If you do decide to go for a car, I’d suggest pre-booking as the summer months can get quite busy and you don’t want to turn up and find there’s no cars available! (Or only some really expensive people carrier!)

      • Stephen

        That’s great, really helpful! Thanks!