Quaint towns hugging the shore gaze towards the Kvarner archipelago with its stunning sunsets coloring sea and sky alike in colors that no picture can give justice.
The variety here is simply stunning. Glittering Saphire of the crystal clear sea. Pebbly and rocky beaches made golden by the summer sun. Emerald hues of the lush Mediterranean vegetation. And behind it all, protecting this natural treasure is the rugged and majestic terrain of continental Croatia.
History and Culture
The roots run deep here. People have lived, loved, and toiled on this land for more than 30 centuries. The first traces were left by the ancient Illyrian tribes, but it was the Roman conquerors that laid the first bedrock for a settlement that would one day become Crikvenica.
They chose the spot where the Dubračina river flows into the Adriatic Sea to build a road station and named it Ad Turres (by the towers).
Croatians later localized the name of the hillside settlement into Kod tor (by the towers), which soon become Kotor. Kotor was devastated by fire in the 18th century, and its residents migrated a bit closer to the sea, nearer to the church (crikva) that gave the modern settlement its name - Crikvenica.
During the middle ages, a noble Croatian hose Frankapan ruled these lands from their seat on Krk island. Their reign lasted for almost five centuries.
All of the cultures settling this land left a mark on its tradition, customs, gastronomy, and way of life, making it wonderfully rich and diverse.
Sport and recreation
Crikvenica Riviera offers a variety of opportunities for activity and recreation. Whether you are a professional athlete or simply looking to spend an active vacation, you would be hard-pressed to find a better spot.
While enjoying your time in Crikvenica Riviera, you might:
- Go for a morning jog, basking in the most beautiful sunrise
- Go for a bike ride and explore the variety of trails of differing levels
- Cast a line and try to catch some fresh fish for dinner
- Go for a romantic walk along the waterfront with your loved one
- Enjoy some friendly competition at tennis, mini soccer, or basketball
- Try to get a hole-in-one at the putt-putt course
- Go paragliding and look upon the riviera from the skies
Or, as an athlete seeking a bit more challenge, you might:
- Enroll in a regatta and test your mettle against the other crews
- Take part in a Šilo-Crikvenica swimming marathon
- Get into a regimen and prepare for the next championship season
Bays and Beaches
Some are romantic, some lively. Some are secluded and some brim with people. Some are perfect for families, and some are pet friendly. The choice is vast, but all of them share the same crystal clear sea, enticing views of Kvarner bay, and offer easy access to the sea for all the family members. We will let you enjoy the discovery of your perfect spots on your own, while only slightly nudging you towards the three we believe you should not miss during your time here.
Crikvenica City Beach
A multitude of tanned holiday-goers makes this mile-long pebbly strip a great setting for a fun-filled day. A proud owner of a blue flag for its pristine sea, the City beach is a favorite destination of locals and visitors alike. The offer of cocktail bars, cafes, snack bars, and restaurants all just steps away means you need not stray far until the sun sets.
A pebbly strip shaded by pines, with a backdrop of an old monastery turned into a beautiful hotel is sure to get you inspired during your day at the beach. This is after all the birthplace of Crikvenica, by the church at the mouth of the Dubračina river, from which this fantastic holiday destination grew.
Monty's dog beach
Family members of the four-legged variety also deserve a holiday filled with sun, sea, and fun. Monty's just outide Podvorska marina is a lovely dog-friendly beach in the center of Crikvenica. After enjoying your time in the sea, cool refreshments and snacks await in Monty's dog beach and bar, where humans are also welcome.
Located directly beneath Hotel Slaven in Selce, this gorgeous sandy beach is a must visit for some great family time. Relax under a parasol or visit one of the nearby bars and cafes to escape the heat. Take a dip in the pristine sea of the Blue flag awarded Rokan beach, while your kids enjoy the aqua park, water slide, trampolines and many other fun activities.
Place your towel on the warm pebbles or the smooth sundeck and bask in the summer day in Dramalj while your kids enjoy a variety of activities this beach offers. Those include a playground, paddle boats, sports courts, and an aquapark, so there is always something fun to try out.
With its centuries-long tradition of winemaking, agriculture, animal rearing, and fishing, Crikvenica Riviera was destined to become a gourmet destination second to none.
Rich soil, perfect conditions for winemaking, as well as the plentiful bounty of the sea all contribute to the superb taste and quality of the local ingredients. Chefs at local restaurants, taverns, and gastro hot spots generously pour love and care into the preparation of each dish, using traditional methods combined with modern cooking techniques to make every meal an experience for all the senses.
If the old saying that love comes through the stomach is true, you are sure to fall in love with Crikvenica during your visit.
Here are some suggestions for unmissable Crikvenica treats:
Sip the nectar of the gods
Vinodolska Žlahtina - Winemaking in this region dates to the Roman population, and no varietal is more popular here than the indigenous Žlahtina (meaning noble) - from which a soft, round, fruity white wine is made.
Taste the noble treat
Frankopan cake, a well-kept secret recipe dating to 17. century, was named after the noble house that ruled the Riviera for half a millennia. Visit Kavana Inter and seize the opportunity to indulge in the crunchy, creamy, rich, and delectably sweet delicacy with hints of delicious peach flavor, as it cannot be found it anywhere else in Croatia or the world.
Enjoy the freshest fish specialties
Fresh and delicate, most often prepared simply and traditionally, over a woodfire grill, Adriatic fish is the most delicious taste of the Kvarner cuisine. Enjoyed with some divine local olive oil and herbs, accompanied by a glass of Žlahtina.
Visit one of the choice restaurants along the Crikvenica Riviera that are a part of the exclusive Blue Fish Road. A go-to destination to treat yourself to a tasty seafood feast, especially if you visit in September when the Month of the blue fish festival is in full swing.
Do not miss
Immerse yourself in the culture
Visit the Crikvenica Town museum and discover the artifacts left by centuries of inhabitants. The museum documents life in this region from prehistoric times to this day. Paleontologic and archaeologic finds, period documents, postcard and photography collection, numismatics and phaleristics collections, everyday objects display, and the collection of copies are all a part of this deep dive into history.
Conquer the mighty Badanj Fort
Visit the ruins of the fort that once guarded the mouth of the Dubračina river and explore the oldest surviving medieval fortification in the area. The fort was abandoned after the great earthquake in the 14th century, but its remnants, including the bricks dating to the antiquity still stand silent watch.
Badanj is located on the Love path trail, just 2 km outside Crikvenica, making it a great opportunity for a day trip filled with hitory and natural beauty.
Take your loved one on a beautiful stroll on the enchanting Love Path
The most beautiful trail of the Riviera is a place where many a love story had begun. While strolling its 8 km length, it is easy to see why. Even the stoniest of hearts will melt at the sight of incredible nature, dotted with the remains of cultural heritage along the path.
Explore the depths
The diverse and beautiful aquatic world of the Riviera rivals the gorgeous vistas seen above the waves. Sign on for one of the many tours catered both to beginners and seasoned divers and explore the underwater world.
Find Nemo in the Aquarium
There is no better way to explore the diverse aquatic flora and fauna than by making a tour of the 30 tanks of the Aquarium in the center of Crikvenica. Each tank is designed to mimic the natural habitat of its inhabitants that include the Adriatic species, as well as tropical and freshwater fish.