Traveling by ferries in Croatia is sometimes only and the most common way to access Croatia’s islands and coastal town.
With 1185 islands along the coast, Croatia ferry network is a cheap and well organized way to get around all major inhabited islands from Northern Adriatic to the southernmost part of the Adriatic coast.
Ferry or catamaran travel is a way of life on Croatia’s coast. Practically it’s the only way to get to the islands, apart from Pag and Krk islands, which are connected to the mainland by bridges.
Discussing the connections by sea from the mainland to the islands, it's important to distinguish three types of vessels.
The most numerous are ferry ships (carrying cars and passengers), catamaran a fast boat with twin hulls in parallel (only for passengers) and motor ship for short distances to a destination where the car traffic, is prohibited or not advisable.
Planning your travel by a ferry in Croatia, it's also important to distinguish the sailing schedule that differs by tourist season, usually by low and high season. The low season covers period from January to the mid of May and from mid October to December 31. In this period the number of ferry's crossing is rather reduced.
In the high season (from mid May to the mid of October), vessels connections are more frequent and sometimes even their number increases. (e.g Split - Supetar ferry, Split - Stari Grad (Hvar) or Brestova (Istria) - Porozina (Cres island).
To help you find all ferries in Croatia along the Croatia's Adriatic coast, I've added some maps with all ferry connections between the mainland and the islands, starting from North Adriatic (Rijeka district), Zadar and Sibenik (Northern Dalmatia), Split (Central Dalmatia) to Dubrovnik (South Dalmatia).
Krka National Park Full-Day Tour from Zadar - Discover the natural beauty of the Krka National Park.
This state owned company is the biggest with almost 95% of ferries in Croatia. Founded in 1947 with a name of Jugolinija (Ex Yugoslavia) today has 500 daily departures in the high season that are cut in half in low season.
All local and international car ferries and local catamarans can now be booked online. Click here for online Jadrolinija booking in four languages (Croatian, English, Italian and German. There are Jadrolinija offices in all coastal and island towns that have a ferry connection.
This small privately owned shipping company is famous for its excellent fast catamaran connections. Since Jadrolinija in 2014 has abolished Rijeka to Dubrovnik ferry, this small company has introduced very popular (in this moment the only connection), route from Split to Dubrovnik (only passengers).
Starting from 2nd May 2016 there is a new tourist high-speed catamaran line Split-Brac (Milna)-Hvar-Korcula-Mljet-Dubrovnik and return. You can check their new sailing schedule, points of sale and ticket prices here! Booking online is also available! Read more why this line is perfect for Central Dalmatia islands hopping enthusiasts!
When planning your ferries in Croatia trip whether on international or local crossings you should calculate two important factors: