Croatia is a very diverse country, both culturally and geographically. At the moment it is one of the top tourist countries in the world, especially cities such as Dubrovnik, Split, islands Brač and Hvar, and national parks like Plitvice Lakes and Krka. These are probably the top destinations, but there are many more hidden gems both on the coast and in the inland of the country.
Firstly, Croatia is one of the countries situated on the 45th parallel north, which is the halfway point between the North Pole and the Equator. It is said that this position would give it a “perfect” climate, where all four seasons are experienced every year. Speaking of climate in Croatia, spring comes in March or April, which is followed by summer starting in June. Summer weather then lasts until the end of September. October gets colder, and sometimes in that month the rainy season already hits Croatian, but that would happen more commonly in November. The rains generally stop in December when the weather gets significantly colder, which is then followed by snow and winter that lasts for several months, up until March. This is a typical continental climate that we experience in the inland. The coast of Croatia, particularly Southern part, on the other hand, enjoys Mediterranean climate, which gives nice weather year round, without snow.
Secondly, history in Croatia goes back far back into the past, starting from over 100 000 years ago when Neandhertals lived in the area of Northern Croatia, remnants of which can be seen in museums such as in Krapina town. The latter also hosts the Museum of Evolution, a high tech museum depicting development of the Universe and humans, based on a theory of evolution. It is also possible to visit the caves where Neandhertals actually lived in the Northen Croatia, places such as Husnjakovo and Vindija cave. The history continues to cultures that lived in the Eastern Croatia from the 4th millenia BC to Indoeuropean settlers in the 2nd millenia BC, to Ilirian tribes and the Kelts, the Romans and finally to Avars and Slavs that came during the Great Migration Period in the 6th and 7th century BC. Most of these tribes and nations have left remnants behind them, such as pottery items, jewelery, glass, as well as the ruins of the whole cities and temples! If you like archaeology, such sites can be visited and explored.
Geographically speaking, Croatia has a lot to offer. Many people have heard that Croatia is the country with many islands, but did you know that, together with Greece and Norway, Croatia has the largest number of islands in Europe? It is known as a land with over one thousand islands, the biggest of which and most popular are Krk, Cres, Hvar, Brač, Lošinj, and Vis. And even though islands are amazing in themselves and a great choice to spend time at while in Croatia, there is much more to see.
Going further inland, there is Velebit mountain, which is part of Dinaric Alps, and with its 145 kilometers it is the longest mountain in Croatia. It offers wonderful hiking area, with surreal scenery that includes both lush vegetation and scarce Mediterranean vegetation on a karts mountain grounds. One of the prettier hiking place there is called Premužić trail, which is part of the Northern Velebit National Park. Speaking of the latter, there are eight National Parks in Croatia, and eleven Parks of Nature. They say the beauty is in the eyes of the beholder, but perhaps the most representative of these are Brijuni islands, Kornati islands, Mljet island, Velebit mountain, Plitvice lakes, and Krka.
A great number of sites and activities are there to see and explore in all Croatian regions – the gentle hills and forests in the Northern Croatia with its famous vino and medieval history, the capital city Zagreb, the flatlands of Slavonia where sky meets the earth, the central parts of Lika and Gorski Kotar with their vast natural horizons and landscapes, the Istria peninsula where you can still feel the time of the ancient Roman Empire and taste the best olive oil in the world, the central coast of Croatia with its main port Rijeka and nearby islands, and finally the Dalmatian coast with its many islands and diverse history.
In short, there are many reasons why to visit Croatia. However, besides the main sites that most of the visitors go to, it is possible to explore even more hidden gems, and truly feel like being in a paradisical land of mystery.