The most beautiful jewel of Croatian cultural heritage
The most beautiful jewel of Croatian cultural heritage, the Old City of Dubrovnik, is situated in the extreme south of the sunniest tourist region of Dalmatia – the Dubrovnik Region. The region is made up of the Dubrovnik-Neretva County, which stretches across the coastline. This is where Dubrovnik is the most important, but by no means the only cultural pearl. There is the home of Marco Polo, on the island of Korčula, the green islands of Mljet, Lastovo and Elafiti and their picturesque villages, the Pelješac peninsula with its vineyards and captain's homes, the magic valley of Konavle, and the fertile delta of the Neretva river.
Three major cultural landmarks under UNESCO protection and much more
The largest tourist region of Dalmatia is the part around its largest city, Split, which only includes the Split-Dalmatia County. It is the heart and the centre of Dalmatia, where most of its inhabitants live, and where the main Dalmatian islands and the most beautiful beaches are located. This is also where the most valuable cultural monuments and four of the seven Croatian sites declared as World Heritage by UNESCO are - the historic centre of Split with Diocletian's Palace, the historical town of Trogir, and Starogradsko polje on the island of Hvar. If it is Dalmatia, as many say, which portrays the real pristine Mediterranean, it is precisely its central part around Split that is the heart of the Mediterranean.
Zadar region is famous for its cultural heritage, historic monuments and surrounding islands
The origin of early Croatian culture Dalmatia is the largest and the most famous historic region of Croatia. It occupies the southern part of Croatia and it is an area of sun, warm sea, olives, wine, fish, poems and picturesque villages with houses made of stone – the real pristine Mediterranean. It is culturally the richest part of Croatia, in which five of the six sites are protected as World Heritage by UNESCO. Since Dalmatia is often reached from the north, we are welcomed by the first of four Dalmatian tourist regions, the Dalmatia - Zadar region, which includes the Zadar County.
The wonder of Central Europe and the Mediterranean
Within Croatia, a culturally and naturally very diverse country, one of the most diverse parts is the Kvarner region, which is part of the Primorje - Gorski Kotar County. This region covers the coastal area of the Kvarner Bay along with numerous islands and most of the small historic province of the mountainous Gorski Kotar. It is right here that the warm Mediterranean area, with stone houses and a rich medieval and Renaissance heritage, passes into the cooler central European areas with powerful fortresses, castles and Baroque churches Unlike Istria and Dalmatia, which were under foreign rule for a significant part of History, the area of Kvarner was under Croatian rulers from the early Middle Ages. Therefore, this part of Croatia highlights a number of autochthonous monuments of the Croatian culture.
ISTRIA - The magical country
The Istrian peninsula, located on the Western edge of Croatia, where the Mediterranean Sea most deeply retracts into the European mainland, has always been a special place.
Such is the tourist region of Istria, which has only one county (the Istrian county), and which is by far the most visited county in Croatia. Istrian peculiarity stems from its location and isolation from the rest of Croatia by the high massif of the river Učka. This unique location and the mix of various influences led to the creation of a special culture, landscape, music and gastronomy, because of which many call it the magical land.
The guardian of Mediterranean architecture that marked the world
Starting from Zadar and moving towards the south, we come to the Dalmatia - Šibenik Region, known for its national parks Krka and Kornati. This region, which constitutes the Šibenik-Knin County, also has very valuable cultural heritage. After all, the county itself was named after its two most important historical cities - the capital, and today the more important Šibenik along the Adriatic coast, and the second, but more important in the past, the royal town of Knin in the interior of the Dalmatian hinterland.
An area with a rich warrior past
The region of Lika – Karlovac is the largest of all the regions that lead out to the Adriatic Sea, and it is the biggest and the most sparsely populated part of Croatia. In addition to crude nature, the sparse population of this area has been influenced by its turbulent history, and frequent exposure to a number of wartime devastations, especially in times of battle between the Christian Europe and the Ottoman Empire. Consequently, we can find relatively few historical monuments here, and those which survived are in large part related to the rich military history.