Traveling Croatia with a dog
Croatia is one of my favorite countries in the world, but I have no doubt that it is the favorite of my dog, Enzzo. He’s had some of the best adventures of his life in the country, and since swimming non stop is his most beloved activity, there is no better place closer to home to be than at a beach in Croatia.
We’ve been to Croatia a few times, each time we visited different places and our road trips lasted at least one week. We’ve always had a wonderful time together while there, and it’s one of the main reasons why we keep going back every other year. Since our first visit, in 2012, we discovered and experienced many things when it comes to traveling Croatia with a dog, and if you’re thinking about taking your furry friend too, here is what you need to know to enjoy your trip together:
Is Croatia pet friendly?
Even though if compared to Germany Croatia isn’t as pet friendly, it is still one of the best countries to travel with a dog that we’ve been to. People are very receptive and friendly with dogs, and sometimes in places you don’t even expect. I can’t say from the point of view of someone who lives there, but as a traveler who takes her dog along, Croatia is no doubt our favorite country for a summer vacation with our furry friend Enzzo.
As in all European countries (I guess I can say that after planning so many trips with a dog around the continent), Croatia does have many options when it comes to pet friendly accommodations, so this is something you don’t need to worry about. From rented apartments and houses, to hotels and guesthouses. Some accommodations charge a cleaning fee (a fixed one for the entire stay or per day), others won’t ask for anything and will still make sure your pet is happy during his/her stay.
On the streets
People are very friendly with pets on the streets in Croatia, it might be Enzzo’s charm, but everyone loved him, offered water or snacks and even asked to take a pictures of/with him. An important point is to keep your furry friend on the leash, but this is a tip for every trip you take together, and it’s mainly for his/her safety.
Restaurants and shops
In general, taking your dog to a restaurant in Croatia is not a problem, but it’s important to ask before you enter if it’s ok, or pay attention to any sign that indicates whether your dog is welcome or not. As for shops, most of them don’t allow pets, but it really depends on the administration, asking is always a good idea. Bakeries and supermarkets do not allow pets, but that’s the normal rule for basically every country.
Going to the beach
If you’re going to Croatia there are high chances you will be heading to the beach, in our case, the beach is always our main reason to visit the country. But, what about your furry friend? Will he/she be able to spend time on the beach with you too?
One of the main reasons why I got inspired to write this post, was the topic taking your dog to the beach in Croatia. Enzzo is crazy for water, and for him, Croatia is paradise, and we do love having him with us when we’re on the beach. However, unfortunately not all beaches allow dogs. How do you know which ones you are allowed to take your pet? The first simple rule is, there will be a sign indicating that dogs are not allowed.
Also, in Croatia there are ‘dog beaches’, reserved especially for dogs. The idea is amazing, imagine being able to enjoy the beach with your dog without people getting upset with all the mess he/she makes entering or coming out of the water? The only problem with most dog beaches in Croatia is that they aren’t always the best or the easiest to get in. We had a great experience with a dog beach in Baska, Krk Island, but a terrible one on Brac Island, which had very difficult access to the water because of many stones and holes, even a bit dangerous to be honest.
Another important thing to know is that in more secluded beaches people won’t actually care if your dog is there, and in those, normally you won’t find any sign indicating whether your dog can or cannot be on that given beach. If there are a few people around, it’s always polite to ask if it’s ok with them. No one ever complained or denied our request for enjoying the beach with Enzzo.
The tricky part is knowing beforehand which beaches allow dogs or not, in many occasions we decided not to take Enzzo because we weren’t sure if he would be allowed. There is a website with a list of beaches that allow dogs in Croatia, but it’s not a complete list, many beaches you won’t find there, though it’s already useful. Another tip to discover this kind of information is by asking the locals.
Good to know: there are no fences separating the dog beaches, which means you need to keep an eye on your furry friend at all times.
On a boat/ferry
We’ve been on board a boat that took us from Pula to Brijuni once, then we had two rented private boats on Brac and Hvar islands, and we also traveled with Enzzo on a ferry from Split to Brac and Hvar. People were always surprisingly friendly on all occasions we asked if Enzzo was welcome aboard, and we never had to pay extra fees for taking him along. Cool isn’t it?
Not only on the beach…
In Zagreb we discovered that it is even possible to take him to the Museum of Broken Relationships, and yes, they are allowed on the public transportation. At the famous Plitvice Lakes dogs are also allowed, though should be kept on the leash and are not permitted to enter the water, they are also welcome on the boats that take you around the park, as well as the buses.
If you’re planning a trip to Croatia with your dog and need some more tips or have any questions, feel free to leave a comment below or contact me directly and I will be happy to provide more information.
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The information on this post was a result of our trips to Croatia between 2012 and 2016, when we visited Pula, Brijuni, Krk Island, Zadar, Brac and Hvar Islands, the Plitvice Lakes and Zagreb.