The Times Lists Top 12 Croatian Beaches

Lauren Simmonds

croatian beaches

July the 8th, 2023 – Croatia has been in all the international press as the summer tourist season gets into full swing. The Times is the latest to shine the spotlight on this country, showcasing the top 12 Croatian beaches.

While we might pick out some slightly different Croatian beaches, and some of these are definitely overrated (and perhaps a little over-saturated), it’s worth seeing just how well the beaches in this beautiful country do when it comes to attracting foreign tourists, and sometimes its best for some beaches to remain secret for as long as possible. How many on The Times’ list have you been to?

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, we all know that Croatian beaches are absolutely second to none, and The Times has singled out some that they think are the best to visit.

Zlatni Rat (Golden Horn) – Brač island

Zlatni Rat on the Central Dalmatian island of Brač can be crowded with people, but it’s worth putting up with because this is one of the most beautiful pebble beaches in Croatia, according to The Times. The white pebbles on the southern side of this island are covered with sparkling clear blue water, ideal for surfers and diving enthusiasts.

It is almost a kilometre long and is one of the most popular Croatian beaches for windsurfing. When you’re done diving, you can relax in one of the many beach bars.

Punta Rata – Makarska Riviera

This is another pebble beach that charms many. Part of the Makarska Riviera, Punta Rata ticks all of the boxes for enjoying romantic moments by the sea, as well as family gatherings at the beach bar.

Pay attention to the huge rock with a pine forest standing on the west side of the beach – Brela.

sakarun – Dugi otok

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If you want a beach that sparkles with colours, visit Sakarun, a beach hidden on Dugi otok. A dark green belt of pine trees borders the beach, where the gleaming white pebbles provide a brighter contrast.

The sea in that part is shallow, so it is suitable for families, and as for the colour, there are different shades of turquoise, depending on where the sun is sitting in the sky.

Bačvice – Split

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This lively sandy beach is only a ten-minute walk from the centre of Split. The sea is shallow, and after swimming you can settle down for a drink at one of the many bars on the beach. The Times also recommends joining the locals who often play picigin (a traditional Dalmatian game) on this beach.

Šunj – Lopud island

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Pine trees provide shade and protection over this sandy beach located on the island of Lopud near Dubrovnik.

Grab a coffee or beer at the beach bar, before stepping out into the shallow sea, which is widely known for its cleanliness. It is the perfect place for daydreaming or a break from the hustle and bustle of Dubrovnik, claims The Times.

Kraljičina plaža/The Queen’s Beach – Nin

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This is one of the longest beaches in all of Croatia. There are no white pebbles, but instead you’ll find soft sand, which makes this place ideal for families with children.

Shade is provided by pine trees, and near the beach there is also the largest known locality of healing mud in Croatia.

Uvala Lovrečina/Lovrečina Bay – Brač


This small, sandy beach is located in a cove and is perfect for sunbathing or paddling in the shallow turquoise waters before heading to the beach bar to quench your thirst.

You’ll also find the ruins of the ancient basilica of St. Lawrence and a shadowy halo of pine trees.

Banje – Dubrovnik

This beach offers a mixture of pebbles and sand, and is located in Dubrovnik. Considering its popularity, it is best to go to the beach in the early morning or during the evening hours.

Dubovica – Hvar island

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Dubovica is ideal for relaxing and watching the soft, gentle waves. Crystal clear water awaits you there, and the bay is home to many boats.

In the local restaurants, you will find locally caught fish on the grill.

Kolovare – Zadar


If you like swimming, this is the place for you because the sea here is quite deep. A good selection of beach bars and restaurants surround this area, but families should perhaps choose another location, precisely because of the depth of the sea, as well as the abundance of pebbles.

Kupari – Župa Dubrovačka/Dubrovnik Parish

Kupari located in Dubrovnik (it isn’t actually in the city, but it’s close enough), where you will find locations that were used to film scenes for the Game of Thrones series. Kupari is a delightful sandy beach which used to be a resort for the Yugoslav Army (JNA), but was destroyed during the 1990s. The eerie backdrop is a surreal addition to the many sunbathing locations.

Sveti Ivan – Cres

A young griffon vulture on Cres – Copyright Romulic & Stojcic

Griffon vultures hover over this isolated beach on the western side of Cres. You will have to take a picnic with you as there is no beach bar.


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