The island of Ciovo is a popular holiday destination, located very close to the mainland and Split Airport (and of course, Split itself). Although it’s an island, Ciovo is in fact connected to the mainland by a small bridge – technically two, in fact, as there’s one from the mainland to Trogir and then another from Trogir to Ciovo.
The main places to stay on Ciovo are Slatine, Okrug Donji and Okrug Gornji and Arbanija.
Slatine is located on the northeastern edge of the island. As with many places on Ciovo, there are a small number of bars/cafes, beaches and restaurants in Slatine, as well as an ATM, a small shop and a bakery. There’s also a little playground should you have little ones in tow.
There’s a boat connecting Slatine with both Trogir and Split, providing a very easy and relaxing way of getting to either (particularly to Split). You’ll also see excursion booths offering trips to the local area e.g. to some of the other local islands.
Recommended restaurants in Slatine include Mali Porat, right by the beach, Restoran Neverin and the laid-back Konoba Pizzeria Dida.
Arbanija is home to a couple of mid-sized Tommy supermarkets, which should have everything you need for your holiday. There’s also a few beaches, plus restaurants and cafes. Arbanija is also home to the St Cross Monastery.
Okrug Gornji and Okrug Donji
Okrug Donji is the most westerly village on the island of Ciovo, whist Okrug Gornji is central on the island. This is probably the more lively end of the island – there are a number of restaurants and cafes – but that’s not to say it’s a party destination with thumping music all night!
There’s a 2km long stretch of pebble beach and promenade on this side of the island which has plenty for holidaymakers to enjoy during the day and in the evening. Okrug is also home to the Fisherman’s Festival (mid-August) and Okrug Summer Nights (mid June to early September) which includes live music and dance.
More on Okrug on the Okrug Tourist Board website.
What to do on Ciovo
By and large, you’ll be kicking back and relaxing if holidaying on Ciovo! There’s not too much to do on the island in terms of sightseeing, so you’ll spending your days hitting the beach, enjoying meals out (and plenty of ice creams) and maybe some drinks in the evening!
You’ll see plenty of families holidaying on Ciovo, so it’s certainly a family-friendly place. Some beaches have large ‘inflatable’ fun parks for older kids to enjoy.
For sightseeing, Trogir is ideal and of course easily reachable. Split, too, isn’t far away – if you can (depending on where on Ciovo you are), we’d highly recommend getting to boat to Split; it sails from Trogir and Slatine on Ciovo.
Getting to Ciovo
The nearest airport to Ciovo is Split Airport – and it’s very close indeed. It’s only about 20 minutes by road to Ciovo, and then obviously more to your final destination on the island. If you’re wishing to make use of public transport, take bus number 37 (which runs on the main road outside the airport) to Trogir, and then another bus on to your destination. However, you may like to enquire with your accommodation about the possibility of a transfer – as it’s so close, it shouldn’t cost much.
If you travelling by bus from elsewhere, you’d first need to reach Trogir Bus Station. This is the case whether you’re on an intercity bus, or perhaps the local bus number 37 from Split. From Trogir Bus Station there are then buses to several destinations, including Slatine, Okrug Donji, Okrug Gornji and Arbanija. You can see the timetable here (click on one of the PDF links).
As mentioned, Ciovo is connected to the mainland by road. If you’re driving you should easily see the turning for Trogir – then just continue over the second bridge to reach Ciovo.
Do be aware that Trogir/Ciovo does unfortunately suffer from traffic issues in the summer. The small bridges connecting Trogir and Ciovo to the mainland mean tailbacks in both directions (heading onto or off the islands) are a frequent occurrence. Try to factor this in when moving around – either travel early or later on in the day. Or use the boat (see below)!
There is a new bridge being built to Ciovo directly from the mainland (bypassing Trogir entirely). It was due to be completed by the end of 2016, then for summer 2017. It still isn’t complete…here’s hoping it will be one day!
Bura Line operate a boat service that runs from Trogir to Slatine on Ciovo and then on to Split. You can see the timetable on their website – services run more frequently during peak summer months. It’s about half an hour from Trogir to Slatine, and then another half hour from there to Split. The boat is a wonderful way of easily reaching Split from Ciovo!
Getting around Ciovo
On the Promet Split website, you can see details of bus lines running from Trogir Bus Station to locations across Ciovo. Check locally for bus times from places on the island.
Accommodation on Ciovo
As it’s something of a holiday destination, accommodation is plentiful. There’s a large variety of holiday apartments with something for all budgets and tastes.
We can personally recommend the Villa La Piedra in Slatine. Gorgeous views out to sea and over to Split, a small pool and easy walking distance to the beach – plus a friendly host, and very comfortable and stylish furnishings!
Day Trips from Ciovo
There are also a number of boat excursions you can enjoy, which you will see advertised locally. One of the best is the Blue Lagoon trip in which you can enjoy the crystal clear waters between Drvenik and the tiny Krknjasi islands. Bring your swim suit!