Croatia, with its stunning Adriatic coastline, historic cities, and diverse natural beauty, has increasingly captured the hearts of travellers worldwide over the last decade. Since joining the EU (and the Eurozone at the end of 2022), this enchanting country has firmly established itself on the global tourist map. If you're contemplating a journey to Croatia, one of the key questions on your mind is likely about budgeting for your trip.
Given its growing popularity, the cost of travel in Croatia can vary, largely depending on your travel style and season of visit. Despite its increasing appeal, Croatia still manages to maintain a spectrum of affordability that caters to both luxury and budget travellers.
To help you plan your journey, below is a detailed breakdown of the potential costs for a week-long visit for two in Croatia during the shoulder season. In this budget, we'll cover accommodation, food and drinks, activities, and transportation costs, providing an estimated total for your Croatian adventure.
As always, these are general estimates and actual costs may vary depending on your personal preferences, travel season, and any unexpected circumstances. This budget does not include other potential expenses such as international flights, travel insurance or souvenirs.
Overall, we suggest budgeting around €1500 for a week-long trip for two in Croatia. This includes:
Food and drinks: €600
The above cost is based on staying in good, mid-range accommodation and eating out most of the time. It makes allowances for sightseeing activities and day trips, but doesn’t take into account expensive activities like adventure sports or private tours.
Generally speaking, the longer you travel, the cheaper it costs per day, while fly-in, fly-out trips can be more expensive.
Below is a breakdown of these costs, so you can update your own budget accordingly.
Croatia's accommodation options run the gamut from luxury resorts to cozy bed-and-breakfasts, suiting a wide range of preferences and budgets. For a comfortable double room in a hotel, which generally includes a private bathroom and other basic amenities, you can expect to pay an average of €90 per night. This totals to around €630 for a week-long stay.
However, costs can vary significantly depending on your destination and choice of accommodation. Notably, popular tourist cities, especially during the summer months, tend to command higher prices. For instance, staying in Dubrovnik, renowned for its well-preserved Old Town and city walls, may set you back more than other parts of the country but offers unique historical insights.
For travellers on a tighter budget, consider staying in hostels. Hostels in Croatia are often well-maintained and centrally located, offering dormitory-style rooms for a fraction of the price of hotels. They're also a fantastic way to meet fellow travellers.
Remember that venturing off the beaten path can often lead to not only quieter, more unique experiences but also more affordable accommodation options. Planning ahead and booking in advance, particularly for popular areas during peak season, can also help secure the best deals.
While you’re in Croatia, you’re going to want to try the local food, so this budget assumes you’ll be eating out most of the time (or at least twice a day). There are options at a range of price points in Croatia and we’ve budgeted to eat at a couple of nice restaurants as well as having cheaper lunches on a couple of days.
This is an easy place to cut costs if you're travelling on a budget - just plan on eating cheap meals or cooking for yourself.
Budget meals: If you’re on a budget, you can find a basic lunch for around €7 each. Don't miss out on trying burek, a popular and delicious pastry filled with cheese or meat, often enjoyed as a quick, affordable snack.
Mid-range meals: Expect to pay around €11 each for lunch. If you’re after local dishes, you can try peka, a traditional slow-cooked dish with meat or seafood and vegetables, or pljeskavica, a local version of a hamburger often found in street stalls and casual eateries.
Restaurants: Expect to pay around €50 for a nice dinner with drinks. Meals in fine-dining restaurants will be more expensive.
If you’re planning on drinking alcohol or coffee during your visit, you can expect to pay around €8 for a cocktail, €3 for beers, and €7 for a bottle of wine. Cappuccinos are around €2 each. This budget includes room for daily coffees and a couple of alcoholic drinks, so expect to spend less on food if you don’t drink.
Keep in mind that dining costs can escalate in heavily touristed areas and during peak summer months. To try more authentic and often less expensive food, consider dining out of the major tourist centres.
Navigating Croatia is relatively straightforward with its efficient public transportation. Plan to budget around €100 for the week for transport, which includes travelling between towns and taking a couple of day trips.
Popular destinations and routes may command higher fares, particularly during the summer months.
Intercity travel: For travel between cities, you could use Croatia's reliable and extensive bus network. However, for a more scenic experience, consider travelling by ferry along the beautiful Adriatic coast or by train through the picturesque interior. The average cost for a one-way intercity bus or train ticket is around €15.
Day trips: Expect to pay around €40 per person for a round-trip ticket.
Local transportation: Croatia’s cities and towns are generally very walkable, otherwise public transportation such as trams and buses are an economical choice, with a one-way ticket typically costing around €1.50. Alternatively, taxis and ride-sharing services are widely available and offer a convenient but slightly more expensive mode of transport.
While you’re in Croatia, you’ll want to experience some of its beauty, whether it’s a day trip to see the cascading lakes and waterfalls at Plitvice Lakes National Park (€64) or a Game of Thrones tour in Dubrovnik (€25).
Activities vary in cost, depending on whether you’re just paying an admission fee (often around €10-15) or want to take an organised trip that includes transport to a nearby island (€60). If you are still planning the specific things you’d like to do in Croatia, we recommend budgeting an average of €40 each per activity.
If you’re on a budget, many of the activities are free or cost very little to enter. Wander around a lesser-visited town, go for a hike, or visit one of the historic sites in the country (entry usually around €10). Many attractions also offer reduced prices for students, seniors, and children, so don't forget to bring any relevant identification to take advantage of these discounts.
These estimates don't include extras like international flights, travel insurance, or personal expenditures for souvenirs or additional entertainment. Please note that costs can vary, and prices in tourist-heavy cities or during peak seasons may be higher. Nevertheless, with thoughtful planning, Croatia can be an affordable and unforgettable destination that offers value for every travel budget.
Last Updated 15 August 2023