Croatia vs Greece, which is best for a summer vacation?
Croatia vs Greece, which should you travel to this summer? Both nations are known for sun-drenched beaches, incredible Mediterranean food, centuries long history and beautiful culture, so how do you choose?
Best destination for a city break – Croatia
Croatia wins this one for me. Whilst Greece is home to Athens, one of Europe’s most historical cities, I think Croatia offers more options in terms of towns and cities.
Dubrovnik is the obvious choice here and perfect for fans of Game of Thrones. Dubrovnik is very much a lived in city but relies heavily on tourism so is set up perfectly to welcome tourists each summer. The city is a maze of marble streets, narrow alleyways and boasts some awesome beach clubs, particularly BOWA.
Find places to stay in Dubrovnik here.
Founded in the year 200 A.D, Split has become the tourist hub for island hopping in Croatia. The city offers bustling cafes, a seafront promenade for strolling or people-watching, renowned restaurants serving an array of fresh dishes, popular beaches, historic hotels, and intimate wine bars.
Find places to stay in Split here.
If you are looking for a short city break in Croatia then don’t overlook Rovinj, a historic seaside town with so much to offer! Cobblestone alleys weave their way through colourful houses and gorgeous town squares, lined with cosy restaurants and souvenir shops.
Find places to stay in Rovinj here.
Best destination for island hopping – Greece
If you are searching for an island hopping holiday in Europe then I truly believe Greece should be top of your list. There are 6000 islands in Greece, 227 of which are inhabited, compared to just over 1000 in Croatia.
The most iconic and elegant island in the Aegean, Mykonos has been welcoming tourists from around the world for decades. The island welcomes everyone with open arms, so travellers, families, couples, party animals, there is something to suit everyone.
Find places to stay in Mykonos here.
A fascinating island with a host of things to do, Corfu is a truly underrated island filled with pretty Venetian towns and oozing in natural beauty. Corfu has been reborn and successfully moved away from its original label of a package holiday destination.
Find places to stay in Corfu here.
I couldn’t leave out Crete, it is the largest island in Greece after all. There are so many things to do in Crete, making it ideal for all sorts of traveller. Crete offers a unique natural beauty which is best seen from the sea itself so why not take a boat trip and do some snorkelling and paddle boarding whilst you’re at it?
Find places to stay in Crete here.
Best destination for history – Greece
It’s no surprise Greece wins best destination for history when up against Croatia, despite both countries have a long past. Greece is the birthplaces of Western civilisation and the home to democracy, it is where the Olympics started and has given the world Greek mythology.
Athens is Europe’s most historic capital city, dating back to the 5th century BC. There is a huge amount of culture and architecture relating to Greek Mythology there is no way anyone could possible get bored here!
Find places to stay in Athens here.
If you are interested in the world’s most famous sporting event then you need to visit Katakolothe gateway to the Ancient site of Olympia, dating all the way back to to 700BC! It is here that the t’s here that the Olympic torch relay starts every 4 years to signify the coming of the games.
Find places to stay in Katakolothe here.
Best destination for food – Greece
Gosh I love Croatia so I apologise that Greece keeps coming out on top here, but Greek food is renowned world wide for a reason! Traditional Greek food is healthy and flavourful, even if you turn up at a tiny backstreet taverna you know you will find something delicious on the menu.
The island of Crete is known to be one of the best foodie destinations in Greece. Its incredible climate produces the juiciest tomatoes you will ever taste! Thanks to its local history and Venetian and Ottoman influences, traditional Cretan food has created a special cuisine filled with fresh fruits and vegetables mixed with olive oil, herbs, fish and seafood, not to mention the its lamb!
Find places to stay in Crete here.
Food in Sifnos is as standard a greeting here as a “hello” or a handshake and that is why it has been voted as one of Greece’s top islands for food. There are fewer than 3000 but what they lack in population, they more than make up in quaint tavernas offering fresh, seasoned food cooked with the most delicious local produce.
Find places to stay in Sifnos here.
Best destination for a road trip – Croatia
Croatia has a one of Europe’s best coastlines and it lends itself perfectly to a summer road trip. The Adriatic coastline spreads 1100 miles from north to south, winding through mountains, beaches, coves, medieval hilltop towns and UNESCO rich cities.
Due to the huge variety in Croatia’s landscape there are a multitude of road trips to experience. Unless you have weeks on end, it’s best to focus on one thing or another, whether that be breathtaking national parks, world-famous beaches, or sticking to rugged mountains.
If you are interested in national parks, make sure you take in Plitvice Lakes National Park before driving down to Krka National Park. Allow 5-7 days for this 220 mile road trip, uncovering 5 beautiful national parks.
Food lovers should road trip around the Istrian Triangle, a heart-shaped peninsula filled with gastronomic riches. Truffle laden forests surround fascinating towns such as Opatija and Motovun. This tour will take you to Rovinj, one of the most charming cities in Croatia filled with cobbled streets and colourful fishing houses before finishing up in Pula, known for its historic sites.
If you are wanting to visit the amazing beaches in Croatia then head to the southern Dalmatian Coast. The route between Split and Dubrovnik is well set up for tourists and offers chances to visit the islands of Brač, Vis and Korcula (the latter being a favourite of mine!).
Best destination for beaches – It’s a tie
You can’t say Croatian beaches are better than those in Greece, and vice versa. Both Greece and Croatia benefit from crystal clear water, great swimming opportunities, and gorgeous sandy beaches.
For an incredible unique beach experience get yourself to Milos. Flying into the island you are treated to a birds eye view of the surrounding turquoise waters of the Aegean Sea and the sandy beaches that line the shores. But these aren’t just any beaches, they are all different, and I often felt like I was walking on the moon rather than on earth…
Find places to stay in Milos here.
Zlatni Rat on the Croatian island of Brač is probably one of the most iconic in the country. This 1,476ft fine-pebble spit is constantly changing shape thanks to the ever changing winds and sea currents.
Find places to stay on Brač here.
Croatia vs Greece – Conclusion
Can you really say one is better than the other in this instance? I don’t think so, I would recommend visiting both.
Depending on the type of holiday you’re looking for, one may be more suitable than the other. For example, if I was looking to take an epic road trip I would 100% pick Croatia, but if I was purely looking to island hope, Greece would be my winner.
Croatia and Greece are pretty close by when you look at the whole of Europe, so why not visit it as a twin centre holiday and enjoy the best of both!?