Before Setting Sail: Split
When starting your yacht charter in Croatia, you will most likely fly into Split Airport, situated in Kaštela only 12 miles from Split. On touch down, you’ll already find yourself right in the heart of Croatian yachting, surrounded by the most reputable marinas and charters all within a 12-mile radius of the airport. The majority of these marinas are located to the west of the city of Split, including charter-specialized marinas such as Marina Baotić, Marina Agana, and ACI Marina Trogir. An easily organized transfer can swiftly take you to your chosen marina.
For those who would like a taste of the Mediterranean city vibe, ACI Marina Split, located right at the city’s seafront promenade, might be the preferred choice for setting sail. Here it is only a 20-minute stroll to the fashionable “Riva”, a waterfront boulevard buzzling with posh mediterranean-style cafes, where nicely dressed locals enjoy one coffee after the other.
Founded in the 3rd century, Split was originally a Greek colony, today it is the second largest city in Croatia. The famous Diocletian’s Palace, the original center of Split, is a UNESCO World Heritage site and one of the world’s best-preserved monuments of Roman architecture. The Cathedral of Saint Domnius, with its impressive bell tower, has gained worldwide fame as a wedding venue. These monuments are built from stone sourced from the island of Brač -your first cruising destination after setting sail from Split.
Day 1/Saturday: Trogir or Split – Milna Brač
On the first day, we’ll set our course towards Brač, the largest island in Dalmatia, and a true paradise adorned with picturesque vineyards and olive groves. Traditionally the locals of Brač traded limestone to the mainland and the surrounding islands. It is from this stone that the Diocletian Palace in Split was built. It is also rumored that limestone from Brač was used in part of the White House in Washington.
Our destination on Brač is on the west coast in the charming, small village of Milna, nestled deep within a bay which forms a perfect natural harbor. Milna has two marinas—ACI Marina, known for its first-rate services, and the more authentic Village Port. Alternatively, you can also choose to drop anchor at the neighboring bay Bobovisca and enjoy the tranquillity of nature.
But an evening stroll through the streets of Milan is a must. Appreciate the beautiful stone architecture and listen to the talented street musicians who play in front of the baroque church. With its rich history, impressive architecture, and warm hospitality, Milna is a delightful stop on your journey along the Adriatic coast.
Day 2/Sunday: Milna Brač – Hvar (Palmižana)
Our next destination is the famous island of Hvar, often regarded as the Croatian equivalent of L.A. This island, known for attracting the rich and famous, offers the opportunity for a bit of celebrity spotting. Hvar gained international recognition in the 20th century when Orson Welles spent several weeks in Hvar Town in 1967 while filming ‘The Deep’.
Hvar is renowned for its many historical buildings, such as the impressive fortress looming high above the town. But many are also located just around the main square, which is known to be the largest in Dalmatia. This is a wonderful place to enjoy a coffee and appreciate the surroundings which rival the experience of being in Venice.
For those choosing to stay overnight in Hvar, dance the night away at Hula-hula Beach Bar located in the neighbouring bay only a 15-minute walk from Hvar. Or if you prefer a quieter overnight spot, you can drop anchor in a more secluded bay in the Pakleni Islands archipelago, situated not far from Hvar. The crew will find the perfect spot to chill.
A recommended place among the isles is ACI Marina Palmizana, situated in an idyllic bay surrounded by a pine forest on the island of Saint Klement. A short walk along a magical forest path brings you to the other side of the island. The bay of Vinogradisce on the southern side captivates with its clear turquoise water. Here you will also find many excellent restaurants and bars hidden among the pine trees. We highly recommend the Laganini restaurant, even praised by U2 frontman Bono.
A secret for those who like to party: Carpe Diem Beach on Stipanska Island hosts a raving Full Moon party, offering a perfect fusion of nature, music and celebration.
Day 3/Monday: Hvar – Korčula (Badija)
As you leave the Pakleni Islands, you’ll cruise by the charming island of Scedro—a serene spot nestled between Hvar and Korčula, and a perfect spot for a refreshing swim. This almost uninhabited island presents an authentic culinary experience at Restaurant Kod Ive, situated right next to a 16th-century Dominican monastery ruin. Indulge in delicious fish, lobster, and langoustines on the restaurant’s terrace built directly on the beach.
You have the option to spend the night on anchor here and enjoy the peaceful surroundings. Alternatively, you can aim to reach ACI, your next stop 22 nautical miles to the East. Be on the lookout for windsurfers and kiteboarders as you navigate the narrow channel between the Peljesac peninsula and the northeast end of Korcula. This area, known for its consistent northwest wind called Maestral, is a popular spot for water sports enthusiasts.
The town of Korčula, often referred to as “small Dubrovnik,” unfolds around the old medieval city on a small oval peninsula, enclosed by medieval city walls. Once safely moored in ACI Korčula, immerse yourself in the charm of the town’s stone buildings, and street music, and explore the many galleries and jewelry shops.
Day 4/Tuesday: Korčula – Lastovo
Before heading south, there is the option of stopping for a quick, refreshing swim at Badija Island, located next to Korčula and renowned for its 15th-century monastery.
After a 20-nautical mile cruise, you’ll arrive at Lastovo, one of the remotest islands in the Adriatic. Lastovo is known for its beautiful 15th and 16th-century Venetian architecture. We recommend staying in the naturally protected bay of Zaklopatica on the northern part of the island. All restaurants in this bay offer free moorings, and Augusta Insula is a very popular choice for a reason. Their cuisine features organically grown ingredients from their family garden, with their highly recommended dish the lobster “Buzara”.
From Zaklopatica it is only a 30-minute walk to Lastovo town located in the town interior. Due to its great distance to the mainland and limited local light pollution, this is the perfect place to enjoy star gazing.
Alternatively, consider berthing at Porto Rosso restaurant in the hidden bar of Skrivena Luka on the southern side of the island. This restaurant offers a magical stay with a view of the blue horizon towards Italy. Try their recommended dish: Pasta with lobster.
Day 5/Wednesday: Lastovo – Vis
As you approach the island of Vis, you have the option to choose between the southern and northern parts. On the southern side, facing Italy, lies the charming fishermen’s settlement of Komiža—a picturesque place protected by a long dock. Komiža provides a great hideaway from the Bora wind, especially now that you are far from the mainland. It’s advisable to enter Komiža before noon if adverse weather is common late in the day.
On the northeastern part of Vis, you’ll find the town of Vis, offering a stark contrast to Komiža with a more modern and aristocratic ambience. With historical significance dating back to 400 B.C., Vis Is full of impressive stone buildings, reflecting architectural influences from Italy.
After five days on the move on the water, you might be ready to spend a little more time on land. Consider taking a tour around the islands, with a military tour offering glimpses of catacombs and other army structures scattered across the island. This tour is available from both Vis and Komiža. Ask the guide to take you to a hidden restaurant serving delicious “Peka”—a must-try traditional Dalmatian barbecue dish featuring a combination of vegetables and meat (or octopus) prepared in special pots under a bell. One highly recommended spot is “Roki’s,” where you can also indulge in exquisite wine tasting. The family takes pride in their organic grape production.
Day 6/Thursday: Vis – Šolta
After exploring Vis, it’s time to accept that your journey is leading you back to the mainland. However, there’s still beauty to discover as you head back via the island of Šolta. Positioned in front of Split, you passed it from the northern side on the first day en route to Milna. The northwest end of the island offers several appealing options for your last night.
For those who enjoy anchoring, Šešula Bay is likely to be a preferred choice. Nestled among pine trees, this bay hides a few delightful restaurants reachable by dinghy or using their buoys. A 10-minute walk will take you to Maslinica, a village home to a modern marina, which provides protection from all winds. In this bay, you’ll find Martinis Marchi, a mansion with an excellent restaurant offering a fine dining experience with a great view. Alternatively, explore the charming village to discover other authentic restaurants and pubs. Don’t miss the must-see sunset from the marina’s dock.
Day 7/Friday: Šolta – Trogir
Upon reaching Maslinica, you’re merely 7 nautical miles away from the marinas of Trogir and Split. Trogir, often referred to as the Little Venice of Dalmatia, is especially known for its well-preserved medieval architecture and has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Trogir’s historic core is a labyrinth of narrow streets and squares, echoing the footsteps of ancient civilizations.
At the heart of this enchanting town stands the Cathedral of St. Lawrence, an architectural marvel showcasing a blend of Romanesque, Gothic, and Renaissance styles. Kamerlengo Castle, perched on the edge of the historic core, provides a stunning panoramic view of Trogir and the azure Adriatic Sea.
The town’s cultural vibrancy comes to life through frequent events like music festivals and art exhibitions, creating a dynamic atmosphere. This is a great place to end your epic charter vacation.