Trains in Croatia

Train is a popular mode of transport in Croatia, although the train network isn’t that extensive – trains in Croatia generally feature most within the country’s interior, and far less so along the coast. Zagreb is, of course, the central hub of the train network, and within Croatia there’s a high frequency of routes to and from the capital. The two most useful coastal destinations connected to Zagreb by train are Rijeka and Split.

In comparison with Western Europe, tickets are inexpensive. There have also been upgrades of some of the track in recent years to improve journey times; for example, on the Zagreb to Split route and in areas just outside Zagreb as well.

Trains in Croatia - Zagreb Glavni Kolodvor

Glavni kolodvor – the main train station – in Zagreb

Funnily enough, the upgrade of Croatia’s road system and the construction of motorways has seen some train services reduced in frequency, as journey times by road have also been reduced! For example, the Zagreb – Rijeka train route, previously one of the busiest, has suffered in popularity as the relatively new motorway has reduced bus journey times to only 2 and 1/2 hours – the train takes 4 hours.

Overall, you will probably have more more options in Croatia if travelling by bus as the bus network is far more extensive. This is certainly the case if you are intending to travel along the coastline for there are hardly any routes along it – alternatively, for a much more leisurely option in this case, take a ferry.

One more thing – to answer one of the more frequent questions that we receive, there are no train services to Dubrovnik! (The town does not have a train station.)

Trains in Croatia – Ticket prices

Here are the journey times for the more popular train routes in Croatia (these are all for second class travel):

From…To…Price(Kuna)Journey Time
ZagrebRijeka96 – 1124 hours
ZagrebSplit165 – 1816 hours or 8/8 hours 20 mins depending on the train
ZagrebVarazdin56 – 723 hours
ZagrebOsijek114 – 1304 hours 30 mins
ZagrebVukovar114 – 1304 hours
RijekaOsijek195 – 2119 hours

Prices vary depending on the type of train you take – inter-city (ICN in Croatian), fast (brzi) or passenger (putnicki) train. Some train tickets have an additional supplement that needs to be paid (6 or 16 Kunas, again dependent on the type of train) although these have been included in the prices listed above. ICN trains are the fastest and therefore the most expensive, but not all train types operate on all routes.

Some discounts are also available, such as 25% off prices for those with ISIC or Euro 26 cards. Always ask if you can receive a discount (provided you have one of these cards!) when buying your tickets.

Trains in Croatia – Useful websites

Route, timetable and price details can be found at the following websites.

  • Croatia Railways
  • Die Bahn Useful timetable info from German Railways for both train journeys within Croatia and to Croatia, as well as routes across Europe

Booking train tickets in Croatia

The Croatian Railways website does not offer an online booking facility, although you can purchase tickets online on the Voyages Sncf UK website for tickets at least 7 days in advance of travel. You can use the search box below to look at timetable and pricing information, as well as making bookings:



Alternatively, you shouldn’t have any problems simply turning up on the day of travel and purchasing your ticket beforehand. You can also do this a few days in advance of your journey if you want to be on the safe side and guarantee a seat on a particular train.

  • You’re welcome! Hope you find a suitable route.

  • Dd

    This is really helpful! I’ll be going to Split on July 8 from Ventimiglia

  • Well, ferries direct to Split only leave from Ancona (see http://www.visit-croatia.co.uk/index.php/getting-to-croatia/getting-to-croatia-by-ferry/ for details of which companies operate this route) and to me it looks like a looong journey from Ventimiglia to Ancona (about 8 hours, at least one change) – http://www.trenitalia.com/tcom-en. In what month are you travelling? I would say flying from somewhere to Split would be better, but you probably known better than I do as to how suitable it is to get to these places from Menton/Vetimiglia – Volotea (http://www.volotea.com/en/ ) have flights from Marseille but only twice a week in summer; Easyjet (https://www.easyjet.com/en ) have flights from Milan several times a week, but only in July/August; Vueling (http://www.vueling.com/en ) only once a week from Florence; there’s a few flights a week from Lyon with Croatia Airlines and Easyjet.

  • Dd

    Is there a way to get from Ventimiglia or Menton to Split? Train + ferry?

  • Yes, you should be fine to buy tickets for a Zagreb – Budapest train at any train station.

  • Jacqueline Hooke

    Hi there
    I want to buy zagreb-budapest train ticket. Can I buy it from any station? Or does it have to be zagreb? Time will be short and I will have several days in slavonski brod before hand. Thanks!

  • You can see train times and prices on the Croatia Railways site http://www.hzpp.hr/en – select a route from Split to Zagreb Gl. Kol. (Zagreb Main Station). There’s a train at 2.35pm that takes 6 hours 15 mins. (Bus will be quicker, by the way). You can’t book online; you can book in advance while in Split (say, the day before) if you want.

  • Shailesh Barot

    I want train times from Split to Zagreb on 24th Sep’16 around midday, what is the best way to book this? How long does it take on direct trains? how much is the cost in economy and first class?

  • chan

    Hi, I am going to Split on 5th June and leaving Split to Zagreb on 9th June and will use a train to move. I was going to buy a ticket via Voyage but it said price would be 47 pound but when I saw HZPP site, it said 208 kuna ( about 21 pound ) so I decide to buy a ticket at the Split station. Now there’s a question, Is there enough tickets left if I buy a ticket 2-3 days before I leave Split? I worry if there isn’t tickets anymore on that day, I should be in trouble.

    • I’m 99% certain you’ll have absolutely no problems buying a ticket in this way (I can’t say 100% because what’s ever 100% certain? :)). Remember, it’s not really possible to buy tickets in advance online so everyone is in the same boat as you. Should you have any trouble, there’s also plenty of buses going from Split to Zagreb – I appreciate you want to take the train, but this can be a ‘just in case’ option.

  • KM

    This summer we plan to travel from Plitvice Lakes to Lake Bled. We plan take a bus from Plitvice Lakes to Zagreb and then catch the train from Zagreb to Bled Jezero. Do you know if advance train tickets are recommended for this route? If so, where can we purchase train tickets online prior to our trip?
    Thanks!

    • I believe it’s better to go to Lesce-Bled station as there are direct trains from Zagreb to there, and that means a shorter overall journey time. It’s not possible to buy tickets online, and I don’t think there’d be any issue with just turning up and buying tickets there and then – I can’t imagine it will be sold out. (There’s several trains a day, in any case.)

  • eeeer

    This summer we plan a bike trip from Perkovic to Zadar/Dugi Otok and we would like to take the train from Zadar to Knin. Do you know if it is possible to take bikes on the train in this route? The question is the same from Knin to Vrhovine. Thanks for answer!

    • I don’t believe the trains on either of these two journeys have a special bike wagon/car, as some of the trains in Croatia do. Here’s the Croatian Railways page on travelling with bikes – http://www.hzpp.hr/en/transportation-of-bicycles?m=378&mp=88 – which makes mention of the fact that on trains without a special bike wagon, bikes must be ‘packaged’ as luggage. You *might* get away with just taking your bike on the train as is…but there’s no guarantee of that… Perhaps contact Croatian Railways (info@hzpp.hr) to see what they say?

      • eeeer

        Thank you for helping! I will contact them 🙂

        • You’re welcome. Hope you have a good cycling holiday in Croatia!

  • Brian Edwards

    In May, I want to travel from Zagreb to Split by train during the day, one day after I arrive in Zagreb by air. I will be in Split earlier in the year (Feb and April) and could buy a ticket at Split. Is such a purchase possible in advance? I am 66.

    • I believe that you’ll be able to buy a ticket in advance in this way, you shouldn’t have a problem to do so.

      • Brian Edwards

        Hi and thanks for very helpful advice. It is important for me that I arrive in Split on the day I should leave Zagreb. A difficult question follows (forgive any apparent impertinence-UK railways are NOT wonderful) is the Hvratski train as reliable as (say) bus? I would like to go by train as I have heard many good things about the journey?

        • Trains are relatively punctual…although you may experience a bit of a delay, nothing too bad. I’m sure you’ll enjoy the journey, yes; however there are far more buses per day on this route (so times may suit some travellers better), and in some cases the bus may be faster.

          • Brian Edwards

            Hi. Thanks for all this help. Hvala tebe. I am coming up against another concern. I need to travel from London to Split in the winter as well as in the summer. There are no direct flights in the winter…options seem to hinge on routing via Zagreb (or Frankfurt or Munich.) To be honest, I was very happy with Croatia Airlines and was put off of Lufthansa because of their industrial problems…I had to spend a lot of extra money because of that. The concern with Croatia Airlines is that the connecting time in Zagreb is tight (30 minutes when I next am due to go), and the flight from Heathrow is often delayed because of the complexities at that airport. I used Croatia Airlines recently and the flight from Heathrow was 1 hr late because of weather. The airline did well by holding the connecting flight (connection time 1 hour on that occasion) but of course this cannot be guaranteed. If there is space on the next flight to Split from Zagreb, they say they will put me on that but it means a long wait at Zagreb (6 hours) and, again, no guarantees. When I next travel to Split, I will want to complete the trip in one day, and so become dependent on making that connection in Zagreb. Do you have any advice or suggestions additional to what the airline itself has told me? Thanks in advance for your further help.

  • Sharan

    Can I purchase Zagreb-Budapest tickets at any train stations in Croatia? I will be travelling from Split to Zagreb by bus to catch the train. There is only an hour between our bus arrival and the train departure. in Zagreb. So hoping to buy the tickets beforehand.

  • Iñigo

    I´m visiting Croatia in 27th of June, do I need to book a train ticket if I`m going from Split to Zagreb during the night?

    • If you are in Zagreb for a day or two before travelling to Split, I would recommend popping by the train station and pre-booking your ticket in this way.

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  • Orla

    How long would it take me to get from Varazdin to Budapest by train in August, trying to catch a 5pm flight to Dublin. I assume I need to go Varazdin-Zagreb-Budapest? Many thanks,

    • I’m afraid Varazdin to Budapest seems to be surprisingly non-straightforward, despite the two places not being all that far airport!

      However, you won’t have to travel via Zagreb (as you said in your comment on the Visit Croatia site). There is a town called Koprivnica that is about 50km southeast of Varazdin. The trains from Zagreb to Budapest pass through/stop in Koprivnica, so there is no need to travel from Varazdin to Zagreb.

      I am afraid it looks like you will have to travel the day before to Budapest, as there’s no train that will get you there for 3pm. There is a 16.15 direct train from Koprivnica that will get you in to Budapest for 21.14. (So, 5 hours journey time.) I believe this costs 248 Kuna one-way.

      You can get the train down from Varazdin to Koprivnica – this takes 45 minutes and costs 30 Kunas. There is a train 14.26 that will get you in to Koprivnica at 15.10; a bit of a wait until the train to Budapest.

      You can see details of all these trains times on the Die Bahn website – http://www.bahn.de/i/view/GBR/en/index.shtml.

      (I know we’ve communicated via email, but I’ve replied to this comment too in case anyone else is planning the same trip!)

  • graham

    we are travelling from Budapest-Sarajevo-Split-Zagreb by trains can we take our bikes with us

    • I don’t see that there should be any problems with taking your bikes on board, although only some of the Zagreb-Split (or vice versa) trains have special ‘bike’ wagons where you can properly store your bikes.

      Btw, the route you mentioned – you’d have to go via Zagreb to get to either Split or Sarajevo from Budapest. Either Budapest-Zagreb-Split or Budapest-Zagreb-Sarajevo is relatively straightforward; Split to Sarajevo looks like it requires travelling *back* via Zagreb…!

  • Martin

    can we have bicycle in the bus from rijeka to zagreb ?

    • I am sure that your bikes would fit in the luggage compartment of a bus, but it would most likely depend on how busy the bus was (which would depend on time of year, time of day…) as to whether or not the bus company would allow you to put them there. You might like to ask Autotrans (https://www.autotrans.hr/) this question – they’re one of the largest bus companies in Croatia, and are based in Rijeka. (And run many, many buses on the Rijeka – Zagreb route every day.)

      You might like to know that there’s two trains a day from Rijeka to Zagreb, and both have allocated bike compartments. The train is slower than buses (takes about an hour longer), but this would be a very suitable alternative if you have trouble travelling with your bikes by bus.

  • con

    need information for a train to budapest on sunday 5 october from rijeka,what are my options

    • You would have to first travel from Rijeka to Zagreb and then take another train from there to Budapest. In actual fact, it would be better to travel from Rijeka to Zageb by bus – there are many buses per day (and not that many trains) and the journey time is shorter (can be from 2 hours 20 to 3 hours, depending on which bus you take). You can look up timetables on the Zagreb Bus Terminal website at http://www.akz.hr/default.aspx.

      From Zagreb, there are then two trains a day to Budapest, one at 09.57 and one at 14.34. You can look at schedules on the Die Bahn website at http://www.bahn.de/p_en/view/index.shtml. Journey time is around 6 hours 40 minutes.

  • TheUninformedtraveller

    How much would train ticket prices be from Split to Dubrovnik and back?

    • Dubrovnik has no train station, so you wouldn’t be able to travel by train! Bus would be the best option to travel between the two cities as there’s so many buses operating per day. (See timetables on http://www.ak-split.hr/ )

      A return ticket would be about 200 – 260 Kunas, depending on which bus company you went with. However, seeing as it’s around 4.5 hours each way, I don’t think I’d really like to do the trip in one day!