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About Croatia

The Mediterranean as it once was ...

    ... according to the Croatian National Tourist Board. And how right they are! Ask any Croatian to describe their country and they will say things like "laid-back, friendly, good food, great sea-food!, sun, crystal clear waters, beautiful islands, and wild natural landscapes". Ask any non-Croatian visitor and they are likely to say "all of the above The Opera House in Zagreb, Croatiaplus a cross between Italian coffee bar culture / fashion and Austrian "kavana" - meaning grandiosity. 

These two extremes perfectly describe Croatia - illustrated by the imposing architecture to be found in Zagreb,  (designed and built in the 19th century by  the same architects who designed the grand buildings to be found in Vienna and Budapest), through to the rugged and picturesque  coastlines and crystal clear waters found in the Kvarner Gulf along the Adriatic coast.   

Situated in Central Europe, Croatia borders Hungary to the north, Slovenia to the west, Serbia to the east and Bosnia / Herzegovina to the south.  With Italy only 17 miles from the Croatian border, the canals of Venice are less than 3 hours away whilst Vienna can be reached in about 4 hours by car. 

The majority of the 4.9 million population are of Croatian descent and follow the Roman Catholic religion, with the remainder descended from Serbian, Bosnian, Hungarian and Italian roots.  As far as climate is concerned, on the coast its very definitely Mediterranean.  With an average of 2,600 hours of sunshine each year, the Adriatic is one of the sunniest coastlines in Europe where the sea temperature can reach 27C during summer.  Inland its more of a continental climate with warm summers and colder winters.


The Kvarner Gulf

Located in the north-west of Croatia, and adjacent to the Istrian peninsula, the Kvarner Gulf is easily accessible from all Mediterranean and mid-european countries. It stretches from the Opatija Riviera in the northwest to the island of Pag in the south and encompasses the islands of Krk, Cres, Losinj and Rab. Being a very deep gulf means that the city of Rijeka at the northernmost point of the region is a bustling sea port that can handle the largest ships and tankers. You can find an aerial map of the Kvarner Gulf here.

With more than 2,100 hours of sunshine annually in Rijeka, and as much as 2600 hours in Rab, the Kvarner region truly belongs to the sunny Mediterranean. Snowfall is extremely rare, especially on the islands. Thus it is not uncommon to find hotels offering free accommodation in the unlikely event of snowy weather during your stay - and as the hotel owners know full well, it's a pretty safe gamble on their part!

The Kvarner Gulf is rich with a variety of fish. Typically there is a prevalence of blue fish such as sardines and mackerel. However a wide variety of quality white fish such as hake, bass and skate can also be found. The waters of the gulf are particularly good hunting grounds for squid and octopus, many of which find their way to the tables of the numerous coastal restaurants.



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