Croatia is one of the most popular tourist destinations in Central Europe because of its amazingly affordable prices, wonderful beaches, and interesting historical spots. These are some of the reasons more than 19 million tourists chose to spend their vacations in Croatia in 2019, and now, post-pandemic, even more vacationers are considering this intriguing hot-spot for both short and long holidays.
But if you’re planning to explore this country, you’re probably asking yourself a few questions that will help you plan your trip better. So, what is the best time to visit Croatia? What is the weather like, and what are the suitable activities you can do each month?
You’re at the right place because we’ll answer all your questions in this article. So, keep on reading.
The Best Time to Visit Croatia
Croatia is a Mediterranean country with coasts along the Adriatic Sea, which means that this country has the best weather in summer. However, summer is fully packed with tourist cruise ships, and the prices usually go up.
The peak season for Croatia in general, and Dubrovnik in particular, begins in mid-June and ends by mid-September. However, prices are too high, and you might face difficulty booking a spot at your favorite restaurant or bar.
This is why the best time to visit Dubrovnik, the capital of Croatia, is between mid-September and mid-October. The big cruise ships leave by that time, and the water is still warm for various water activities. Moreover, with an average temperature between 60 and 75 degrees Fahrenheit, you can spend hours in the water without feeling cold.
The coastline of Dubrovnik offers various beach options, from the rocky ones for adventure lovers to calm waters where you can swim or meditate. During this period, you can also go island hopping, visit the 1244 islands found along the coast, enjoy the best restaurants, and chill at bars and clubs.
If you wish to visit Croatia earlier, you can plan your trip between mid-April and mid-June. The weather begins to get warm so going to the beach will be possible. At the same time, there won’t be a lot of tourists, so the prices won’t be that high.
Best Time to Visit Dubrovnik: What to Expect in Each Month
Although we talked about the best time to visit Dubrovnik, you can expect to find tourists throughout the year, as Croatia continues to establish its status as one of the most affordable and desirable European destinations.
So, what if you decide to visit Croatia in the winter or fall? In this section, we’ll talk about what to expect during each month of the year to help you plan your upcoming visit.
January is the coldest month of the year, with an average temperature of 48 degrees Fahrenheit in Dubrovnik. As a result, some hotels and vacation rentals will be closed after the New Year’s celebration, but this doesn’t mean that it’s not a good choice for vacation.
The Winter Festival takes place from the 2nd to the 6th of January, and you can watch several performances as well as enjoy local food. You can also enjoy a free museum visit on the 26th when all museums open their doors for free. You can definitely take landscape photos without too many people around, and if you’re lucky, you might be able to catch some snow.
February is still cold, and you can expect some rain, but Dubrovnik starts to recover after the holidays. During this month, you can attend St. Blaise Day, patron of Dubrovnik, and enjoy the celebrations, although the rest of the country might not feel as festive.
Although some spots will still be closed, you can enjoy your time in malls, town halls, and most restaurants and bars.
The weather starts to improve in March, although you can still expect some rain. More hotels, restaurants, and other venues will start to open as Croatia receives the first groups of tourists.
On the 21st and 22nd of March, you can celebrate the St. Joseph Festival, which is also the date of the Oyster Festival. This is a great chance to taste the oysters in Pelješac along with some tasty wine.
Although you can expect some rain in April, the weather begins to improve significantly. The average temperature is 59 degrees Fahrenheit, and all the hotels, restaurants, and bars are open and ready for tourists.
The Wine Festival takes place between the 16th and 22nd of April, and many restaurants offer special menus. You can also enjoy the performances of the Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra in the Dubrovnik Musical Spring.
May marks the best season for visiting Croatia, as the weather will be more stable. The temperature is around 63 degrees Fahrenheit, which might still be too cold for swimming. There might be some rain, but all the restaurants, clubs, and pubs are open and operating.
The prices won’t be soaring during this period, so it’s a good time to visit the islands or take a coach tour.
The weather is warmer and more stable in June, so it’s the perfect time to explore the beach towns of Croatia. With an average temperature of 70 degrees Fahrenheit, this is the right time to go island hopping and horseback riding. In addition to swimming, most tourists engage in other fun water activities like jet skiing, sea kayaking, and flyboarding.
Cruise ships start to arrive in June, so Dubrovnik is likely to be more crowded. However, you can also enjoy a lot of cultural events and festivals like the Midsummer Scene and the International Operas Arias festival.
This is usually the hottest month in Dubrovnik, and you can expect to see more cruise ships and tourists. As a result, hotel and accommodation prices increase significantly. With an average of five cruise ships visiting Dubrovnik and as many as 10,000 people tour the city daily.
It’s a great time to visit the islands, engage in water activities, or simply chill by the beach. This month also marks the beginning of the Summer Festival, which starts on the 10th of July and ends on the 25th of August.
Just like July, August is another hot month where you can expect to see thousands of tourists in Dubrovnik. All the restaurants, pubs, and other venues are functioning at their full capacity, but you can expect to see queues wherever you go, so making reservations will be a smart move.
You can still enjoy the Summer Festival, or go to the beach and visit some islands.
As September begins, the crowds disappear, although the weather is still great. This is why it’s one of the best times to enjoy Dubrovnik and Croatia in general. The water is warm, and the weather is dry but not scorching hot.
This is an excellent chance to take part in the Ston Wall Marathon. In addition, you can also enjoy the International Late Summer Music Festival.
In October, the temperature drops to 65 degrees Fahrenheit, so water activities might not be possible. However, the weather is still warm enough for day trips and visiting other attractions and venues. You can explore the city, go on multiple-day trips in Korcula and Montenegro, or just enjoy the museums.
There are some cool events that you can attend in October, like the Good Food Festival, which focuses on local specialties and wine. You can also join the Dubrovnik Triathlon.
The days start to get shorter, and the temperature drops in November, so you can expect to see fewer tourists. In addition, many hotels are starting to close, although you can still expect to see some cruise ships.
Although beaches, restaurants, and bars start to close, museums and city halls still function according to a shorter schedule. This is a good time to spend your vacation in a luxurious hotel because the prices drop significantly.
It’s quite rare to see any cruise ship in Dubrovnik in December, so this is an excellent time to enjoy the city if you prefer peace and quiet. In addition, the weather is cold, and rain is expected, so there’s a big chance of enjoying outdoor activities.
But the city starts to come to life one more time as Christmas and New Year’s celebrations approach. You can visit the Christmas market and enjoy some of the tasty food and wine with the locals.
The best time to visit Croatia is in the fall or in the early summer. The prices won’t be too high, and the weather will be warm enough for most activities. Nevertheless, you can still enjoy your stay in Dubrovnik if you visit it during any other month.