1492 Cocktail Bar
D Dokule, (051 724 196/hr-hr.facebook.com/pages/1492-Cocktailbar-Rab/120455027982739) Open 6pm-2am daily. No credit cards.
Next door’s Santa Maria restaurant is behind this slick cocktail bar with great service and music ranging from Latin to electronic. The name and decor continue the restaurant’s Columbus theme. There are over 50 cocktails on offer, frozen, champagne-based and sours, averaging at 45kn. During happy hour from 6pm, several go for 30kn.
22,000 milja pod morem
Frankopanska 22 , (01 481 7007/www.22000milja.com/) Email email@example.com, Open 7am-2am Mon-Sat. Credit DC, V.
An unexpected find in an unpromising courtyard, “22,000 Leagues Under the Sea” is very much a Zagreb one-off, decked out in wood paneling, metal rivets, and several clusters of dials that look like the kind of pressure-gages you might find in a submarine. It’s a wonderful piece of steampunk-influenced design, and is very popular with young locals – it’s the kind of place that might be full on a Tuesday in February when all other bars in the neighbourhood are empty. It’s also one of the few central pubs that serves bottles of San Servolo beer (25kn/half litre), the malty boutique brew from Istria.
Sv Dominika, (020 322 222/www.360dubrovnik.com) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open Noon-midnight daily. Closed Jan-Feb. Credit V.
Headed up by Jeffrey Vella, former chef at Zagreb’s Hotel Esplanade, 360 degrees offers both a top-drawer setting in the Sveti Luka bastion, and top-drawer cuisine the melds the best of contemporary Mediterranean cuisine with Croatian tradition. Meticulously sourced food is painstakingly created and immaculately presented, with stand-out mains including sea bass with confit of artichokes and asparagus, steamed turbot with apricot puree, rabbit and pigeon. It also boasts what is quite possibly Croatia’s longest (and most expensive) wine list, including a whole page of champagnes. The terrace bar has the best cocktails in town. They don’t take reservations (unless you are a VIP) and treat customers on a first-come-first-seated basis. If you can, beg for a booth in the gun chambers close to the sea.
360 degrees: cocktail bar
Sv Dominika, (020 322 222/www.360dubrovnik.com) Email email@example.com, Open Late Mar-Dec 7pm-midnight daily. Credit V.
Jeffrey Vella’s high-end restaurant also has a cocktail bar set high on the ramparts of this medieval-fortress location. The strong selection starts with the standards in the 70kn range (Cosmopolitans, White Russians and so on), moving on to White Ladies, Gin Fizzes and powerful Mojitos. With views of the old port down below, this is one of Dubrovnik‘s finest venues for an intimate drink.
Palmotićeva 13, (01 8897 999) Email www.4citywindows.com, Rates Doubles 580-690kn; single occupancy 440-530kn. Credit V.
A converted ground-floor flat mere minutes from the main square is the venue for this chic, welcoming and intimate B&B venture. Rooms are small but all are ensuite and come with a lot of character: one is themed around the local animated-film tradition; another (the ‘Art Room’) is crammed with pop-arty works by Nikolina Ivezić and Tatjana Politeo. There’s more artworks by Ivezić and Politeo in the exposed-brick breakfast room, where you get a decent buffet choice in the morning and the chance to help yourself to tea and coffee throughout the day. Parking is available if you reserve in advance.
Dukljaninova 1, (01 4616 654/petacetvrtina.com/en/) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Marketing email email@example.com, Rates Noon-3pm & 7-11pm Mon-Sat. Credit V.
The latest venture from Dino Galvagno (the power behind highly-praised eatery Prasac), 5/4 or ‘The Fifth Quarter’ opened in 2013 and established itself almost immediately as Zagreb’s latest must-eat culinary sensation. It’s certainly a unique place to dine: with twigs and leaves stuck to the wall, the interior looks like a cross between a contemporary art installation and a forest hut. The menu changes daily and basically represents what the chef found at the market and what he feels like cooking; expect an individually crafted selection of European-Mediterranean dishes, with Adriatic fish and at least one mainstream meat dish always featured. The smaller dishes and starters are delights in themselves, and it pays to order several if you want to experience the breadth of 5/4’s cuisine: the 5-, 7- or 12-course tasting menus (for 290Kn, 410Kn and 570Kn respectively) come highly recommended.
Gundulićeva 19, (01 48 73 524/www.amarie-fashion.com) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open 9am-8pm Mon-Fri; 9am-3pm Sat. Credit V.
Croatian Ana Marija Brkić established her own fashion label for womenswear in 2002, quickly establishing a reputation for understated glamour and subtle chic. She is also one of Croatia’s leading designers of spectacles and sunglasses. You can see her creations in her tiny but elegant, white-walled shop just a few blocks south and east of the main square. Alongside the current season’s collection of casual and eveningwear, there are also handbags, belts and bracelets on display.Croatian Ana Marija Brkić established her own fashion label for womenswear in 2002, quickly establishing a reputation for understated glamour and subtle chic. She is also one of Croatia’s leading designers of spectacles and sunglasses. You can see her creations in her tiny but elegant, white-walled shop just a few blocks south and east of the main square. Alongside the current season’s collection of casual and eveningwear, there are also handbags, belts and bracelets on display.
Academia Ghetto Club
Dosud 10, (021 346 879) Open 9am-midnight Mon-Sat. No credit cards.
The most bohemian of the bars in the palace, the AGC comprises a front courtyard, a small bar leading to a muralled main room with a vaguely erotic theme (‘Welcome to the House of Love’), and an upstairs gallery, open according to event. Arty locals mingle with tourists happy to hear reliably good music. It forms one end of the narrow, stepped Dosud bar run.
Sv Roka 2, (020 711 253/www.konobaadiomare.hr/) Email email@example.com, Open Apr-Nov noon-midnight Mon-Sat; 6pm-midnight Sun. Credit V.
A bit of an institution, Adio Mare is Korčula town‘s oldest-family run restaurant and little has changed since it opened in 1974. It’s a friendly, buzzy, hearty Dalmatian restaurant showcasing tradition rather than innovation. Book a table on the shaded terrace upstairs and enjoy the brodet fish stew with polenta, the grilled meats or the pasta with beans. There’s a decent enough selection of local wines. Baby-seats are available if needed.
Admiral, Marina Frapa
Uvala Soline, Rogoznica, (www.marinafrapa.com) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open May-mid Sept midnight-4am daily. No credit cards.
Marina Frapa is Croatia’s classiest marina, with entertainment in a big complex near Rogoznica, a short drive from Primošten. Its nightclub, Admiral, shed its risqué image after being taken back into direct management. Now locals join sailors who moor up overnight. With space for 500, Admiral stages a live act each night, with dancers and resident MC DJOJ while bartenders juggle bottles and throw fire.
Obala Fabrika 28, 21450 Hvar, (021 750 200, +38 521 750 555/www.suncanihvar.com/) Email email@example.com, Rates €159-€312 double. Credit V.
This four-star Sunčani makeover overlooking the yacht harbour is small enough to retain an intimate boutiquey feel but boasts serious amenities: a big spa complex with all the treatments and programmes (including yoga); a rooftop terrace with heated swimming pools indoor and out; and a panoramic bar. Rooms come in shades of lavender-purple in tribute to the island’s most famous herb crop; those with sea views come with excellent views of the old port. The Adriana is one of the Sunčani Hvar hotels earmarked for all-year-round opening.
Obala hrvatskog narodnog preporoda 8, (021 340 000/www.hotel-adriana.com) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Rates 400kn-750kn single; 600kn-1100kn double. Credit V.
The 14 well-priced three-star rooms above this waterfront restaurant offer a simple, comfortable stay within an easy walk of the harbour. Some are quite small – choose if you can. Terrace breakfast is included in the price.
Uvala Baluni, (021 398 560/www.adriaticgraso.com/) Email email@example.com, Open noon-midnight daily. Credit V.
Occupying a raised promontory just above the ACI marina, this glass-enclosed pavilion offers superb views of the Adriatic, with outdoor tables stretching along the promontory towards the south. The main, formal part of the restaurant occupies the western side of the building: here the menu concentrates on classy Dalmatian fish and seafood dishes, prepared with a haute-cuisine focus on originality and attention to detail. On the eastern side of the building is the Adriatic Grašo pizzeria – a relaxed and inexpensive place to sample good food and enjoy splendid views. Owner Zoran Grašo is an ex-basketball star and his son Petar is a well-known singer, so it’s no surprise that this place is popular with Split society.
Adriatic Kayak Tours
Zrinsko-Frankopanska 6, (020 312 770/www.adriatickayaktours.com) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open according to programme. Credit DC, V.
A range of outdoor activities, including sea kayaking for beginners, is run by American expat Tamsen Resor, who set up outdoor adventure firm Adriatic Kayak Tours in 2005. Resor had been exploring the coves, caves and coast since 2002, the same features she and her seven-strong experienced international team now take small groups to. For sea kayaking beginners only need turn up, go through a few paddling techniques in shallow, protected waters, before heading to Lokrum island for lunch. The calm waters from the Pile Gate to the verdant, car-free island of Lokrum is, under guidance, a doddle. AKT also offer sunset paddles, with wine and cheese thrown in. Children aged eight to 16 are welcome but must be accompanied by an adult. AKT run full-day and customised group tours too – and, despite the name, not just sea kayaking. You can go white-water rafting in Montenegro’s Tara River Canyon, mountain biking in Konavle and Istria, enjoy three days of kayaking and snorkelling around the Elafiti islands, and, in winter, try winter sea kayaking in the Bay of Kotor, Montenegro.
(0 91 526 3813/www.adventuredalmatia.com) Email email@example.com, Open Summer from 11am Mon; from 9am Tue, Thur, Sat; from 4pm Wed, Fri. No credit cards.
Sea-kayaking for beginners, given brief instruction from an experienced guide before taking off for half-a-day’s adventure around the calm waters of Lokrum island. Lunch is included. Groups depart near the Lovrijenac fortress. Adventure Dalmatia also lays on longer tours, night kayaking and snorkelling. Its main office is in Split – book on the website or call the mobile.
Soboli 53 - Grobnik Sports Airport, (051 250 193/www.grobnik.hr/offerta-speciale/Restaurant-AEROSTEAK.en.html) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open 8am-11pm daily.. Credit V.
This restaurant is set behind the pit-lines of a popular racetrack and close to a small airport. Although local meat is the highlight of the menu, it also offers a range of cuisines, from Greek to Italian, whatever takes your fancy as you watch (or take part) in the races.
Vetranićeva 3, (0 98 854 954) Open 5pm-1am daily. No credit cards.
One of the busier spots come midnight in the Old Town, Africa attracts a young crowd who squeeze into a compact, colourful space of well conceived murals, wood carvings of thin faces and bar tables topped with maps of the continent concerned. Nothing much African on the menu, though – just 50 odd cocktails, shooters, short and long drinks, plus Karlovačko and Heineken on draught. Watch out for darts flying into the machine board by the bar. Under the same umbrella as the nearby nightlife hub, the Casablanca.
Tkalčićeva 39, (01 48 29 826/www.restaurant-agava.hr) Email email@example.com, Open 9am-11pm daily. Credit DC, V.
The brightest spot on the gentrifying Tkalčićeva thoroughfare, Agava offers a professional and cosmopolitan approach to dining. It comprises a cabin-like main interior and the terrace below. The menu features starters such as mushroom carpaccio at 45kn; a good choice of pastas and risottos from 70kn, and a dozen or so mains (baked octopus 90kn; roast duck breast 105kn). Before your dish arrives, a side basket of warm focaccia bread sprinkled with rosemary keeps hunger at bay. A fair selection of Istrian and Slavonian wines may complement the meal; plums in red wine (30kn) provide a suitable dessert.
Masarykova 12, (092 171 1030/aha.hr) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open 9am-8pm Mon-Fri; 9am-2pm Sat. No credit cards.
Imaginative toys for children and adults, many made out of wood.
Bogovićeva 3, (01 563 5483/www.akamaru.hr) Email email@example.com, Open Open 10am-midnight Mon-Thur; 1oam-1am Fri & Sat; 10am-11pm Sun. Credit V.
It’s all change at Bogovićeva 3, the prominent restaurant location previously occupied by folksy Adriatic eatery Tratoria al Pittor. Dark woods, low tables and paper-screen partitions bring a touch of Far-Eastern authenticity to this new Japanese-themed venture. As expected, sashimi and sushi are the main stars of the show; ramen noodle soups, yakitori grilled meats, and a few Oriental-Adriatic fusion dishes help to fill out the menu.
Pierottijeva 11, (www.pierottijeva11.org) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open According to events schedule, usually until late. No credit cards.
Still going strong despite the municipal authorities’ threat to dramatically raise the rent, this shrine to all things alternative grew out of Zagreb’s anarchist movement and is still run as a non-profit-making collective. A courtyard decorated by some of Zagreb’s best street artists has a café-bar on one side, and a concert venue-cum-club space on the other. Events range from anarcho-punk gigs to dub reggae DJs and cutting-edge dance music, with all kinds of other styles thrown in for good measure. Visual arts association Otomptom throw impromptu film evenings screening animation and shorts. Popular with a broad spectrum of Zagreb’s club-hungry youth, Medika is much more than just a gathering point for the grungey underground.
Obala maršala Tita 33, (052 441 001) Open 6am-1am daily. No credit cards.
Al Porto is part ice-cream parlour, part cake shop and part café-bar. It offers 48 different types of ice-cream (plus six diabetic choices) and a mind-boggling array of sundaes, complete with paper umbrellas and lashings of whipped cream. The decor is upmarket rustic with comfy tub chairs and low tables. The terrace is right on the quayside where the fishing boats moor – a prime location during ‘Fishermen’s Fests’ – and the main reason it opens so early in the morning. If the weather is bad don’t be surprised to see the place filled with card-playing sea salts.
Preradovićeva 12, (091 521 3703/alcatraz.pondi.hr/) Open 7am-4am Mon-Sat; 9am-4am Sun. No credit cards.
This place has been around for a few years and it’s a real locals’ hang-out. The interior of Alcatraz is crowded with American number plates, beer flags, and mannequins – one of which wears a Mick Jagger mask and seems to be a part of the party. The weekends see it packed with locals, who stop by for a myriad of bottled beers – loads of Belgian speciality brews alongside the excellent local Velebitsko – and the DJs jamming rock and dance tunes. There are also a slew of home-made rakijas (grappas) such as honey, cherry or blackcurrant.
Gajeva 1, (01 488 1555/www.algoritam.hr) Open 8.30am-9pm Mon-Fri; 8.30am-4pm Sat; 9am-2pm Sun. No credit cards.
The flagship of a leading chain of bookstores across Croatia, Algoritam (situated by the main square) stocks a surprising amount of foreign-language material, novels, guides, phrase books and the latest magazines from the UK and the States.
Stradun 8, (020 322 044/www.algoritam.hr) Email email@example.com, Open 9am-8.30pm Mon-Fri; 9am-3pm Sat; 10am-1pm Sun. Credit DC, V.
If you’ve lost, forgotten or galloped through your holiday reads quicker than anticipated, this bookshop is a boon. Half the store is dedicated to English-language publications: from travel guides to bestsellers, classics to heavyweight volumes on politics, history, art and design. Also has an impressive stock of two dozen (pricy) English magazines (Q, Arena, Vogue), postcards, CDs and glossy photographic album histories of Dubrovnik.
Dolac, (021 742 797/www.hvar-alviz.com) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open May-mid Oct 6pm-midnight daily. Credit V.
Something of an upscale pizza and pasta joint beyond Hvar town’s car park and bus station, Alviž also serves first-class fish and risotto with shrimp and-curry sauce. Find a table on the back patio under the 80-year-old grapevine that winds its way above your head and still provides grapes, used by the family for the restaurant’s fruit, wine, dessert wine and grappa. Friendly, welcoming and down-to-earth, with a laid-back atmosphere – and the best pizzas in town. It’s open all-year round.
Monsena bb, (052 800 250/www.maistra.com/Amarin_Rovinj) Rates Studios from 1150Kn. Credit V.
Six kilometres north of Rovinj, the Amarin resort comprises an attractive cluster of 2-person to 6-person apartments situated on a green slope overlooking the sea. Two thirds of the apartments are renovated units originally built in the Seventies, while the other third are completely new, designed by 3LHD, the Zagreb-based architecture practice responsible for the nearby Hotel Lone. A contemporary-Croatian design theme runs throughout the resort, with furniture by NumenforUse, Bratović & Borovnjak and Grupa: signage by Lana Cavar, and graphic art inside the rooms courtesy of street artist Oko. Famous for drawing phantasmagorical creatures with the heads of animals, Oko was inspired by the local Istrian fauna (sheep, donkeys, boškarin cattle) to create the playful images that adorn the apartments here. Amarin also offers a well-shaded campsite, two pools between the accommodation units and the beach, tennis courts, entertainment for kids, restaurants and bars.
Vlaška 6, (01 55 83 360/www.slasticeamelie.com) Email email@example.com, Open 8am-10pm Mon-Sat; 9am-10pm Sun. No credit cards.
With a mixture of old wooden chairs and modern cast-iron affairs upholstered in pale blues and pinks, this delightfully twee, Frenchy-flavoured little place is the ideal spot to sip tea and munch your way through some of the Croatian capital’s best lemon-meringue pies, cheesecakes and quiches. There’s invariably a strong showing of different cakes in the glass display cabinet, rendering the selection process tantalizingly difficult.
Savudrijska cesta bb , (095 904 8583/www.facebook.com/americanbar.umag) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com , Open 10pm-6am daily. No credit cards.
Breaking the monotony of tourist-trap commercial bars in Umag, American Bar is an interesting one. With live music at least once a week – anything from rap to blues to rock to dubstep – and DJ’s on other nights, it’s a cheap American-themed bar with a semi-open terrace and small stage. Staff range from an unfriendly older female biker to young, enthusiastic students in their twenties. Right on the car park, its clientele vary from teenagers cheaply pre-drinking for Planet and Jimmy Woo opposite to those in their thirties and forties having a cheap beer or two. Live music nights are packed; the bar is decorated with photographs, old cigarette adverts, money from around the world and jokey newspaper articles, and toilets, it must be said, are horrific after 9pm. Next door is a small fast-food place for those who need a burger to soak up the beer.
Amfiteatarska, (052 375 600/www.hotelamfiteatar.com) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open 11am-midnight daily. Credit V.
With culinary star Deniz Zembo (owner/chef at Le Mandrać in Volosko) overseeing the menu, this recently opened venture aims to deliver traditional Mediterranean-Istrian cooking – at affordable prices but with contemporary panache. The setting is certainly a statement in itself, with furniture, tablecloths and napkins all coming from the ‘you-can-have-any-colour-you-like-as-long-as-it’s matt-black’ school of modern design. The daily three-course menus are a steal (there’s a choice of three priced between 50kn-100kn, including at least one vegetarian selection), while the à-la-carte menu has plenty in the way of pastas and risottos and a good choice of mid-price pork and chicken. Desserts are first class and prices throughout are more than tempting: the grilled fresh fish is the only item that breaks the 100kn barrier.
Hvar town, (021 750 300, 021 750 555/www.suncanihvar.hr) Email email@example.com, Open Apr-Oct. Rates €95-€242 double. Credit V.
The Amfora reopened its doors in the summer of 2008 as a swish four-star holiday hotel that also has the best conference facilities on the island. Set in pine trees a ten-minute walk from the main square in Hvar town, the Amfora is Hvar’s largest hotel, its sweeping concrete wings perched above a cascading pool ideal for padlers, and a crescent of pebbly beach on the seafront below. The exclusive Bonj/Les Bains beachhouse and lounge bar is a few steps away, as is the Splash bar, for après-beach DJ parties. Rooms are decked out in pristine whites and feature well-chosen contemporary furniture. Classic views of the Pakleni islands open up from the sea-facing doubles. There is a gym on the top floor, and free Wifi throughout.
Donja Kola, (021 765 479) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open Feb-Oct noon-3pm, 6pm-1am daily. No credit cards.
The heart of a growing funky scene in Stari Grad, Antika is part traditional, part laid-back modern. A hodgepodge of dining-room furniture crowds pine floors upstairs and stone tiles below; candlesticks overflow with years of coloured wax under wooden beam ceilings; and plaster walls with framed photos and faded paintings fill a house built in 1566. Outdoor tables line the alley and piazza round the corner. The food veers from grilled fish fare without subjecting you to pizza. Starters include tuna carpaccio and chicken breast salad; mains (45kn-85kn) shark in a sour cream and chives sauce, and made-to-order steak in a garlic, green pepper or stroganoff sauce. Opposite, Antika’s café-bar serves cocktails (25kn-35kn); White Russians are the speciality. Pull up a converted tractor seat downstairs or have the friendly staff pulley up your drink to the breezy terrace as you lounge on the faded orange cushion of a brown wicker couch.
Draznikova 15, (023 265888/www.lekavski.de/en/) Email Hotel@Lekavski.de, Rates €50 - 95 rooms; €80 - 185 suites. No credit cards.
Located in the picturesque Dalmatian village of Zaton, between Nin and the port of Zadar, Aparthotel Lekavski is a cosy, modern family hotel. Offering a range of amenities including a lovely cafe-bar terrace and swimming pool, Aparthotel Lekavski also organises entertainment; cocktail parties, candlelit dinners and dancing feature in their program, as do excursions (not included) of the nearby national parks.
Šetalište kralja Petra Krešimira IV 5, Baška Voda, (021 620 644/www.hotel-milenij.com) Email email@example.com, Rates Varies. Credit V.
The Aparthotel Milenij has 27 four-star apartments spread over five floors, from small to spacious. There’s 24-hour room service, a restaurant, two cocktail bars (one on the beach), a TV lounge with a pool table, gym, sauna, outdoor pool and an underground garage.
Rupe 24, (022 570 533/www.hotelsilvija.com) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Rates €45-€146 double. Credit V.
For unobstructed sea and Old Town views, book one of the 11 well-equipped suites inside this white modern structure, a ten-minute walk uphill from the busy main road. Don’t expect villa-like luxury, but you can count on balconies, kitchenettes and air-con in most of the units. There’s a cleaning fee slapped onto the bill at the end, usually around 120kn.
Crnica 1, 22202, Primošten, Croatia, (022 570 380/www.apartmani-jerko.hr) Rates €50-€80/Apartment. No credit cards.
Jerko is open all year round, although the restaurant is closed in winter and has been sub-let to new managers. Run by a young couple who have restored this family house in a fine location, the four apartments on the first floor are individually accessed from the external stairs, overlooking the terraced restaurant area. Each air-conditioned unit contains a convenient kitchen area and a dining room looking out over the Adriatic. Unfortunately they do not also feature balconies but you’ll find that the beach is just in front of you.
Ilije Sarake 4, (020 324 005/www.dubrovnik-amoret.com) Email email@example.com, Rates €60-€140 2-person apartments, extra beds by arrangement. No credit cards.
Thirteen wonderfully decorated apartments at three different locations in the Old Town. All apartments come with kitchenette, TV and free wifi. In summer, stays of under four nights will be subject to a slight surcharge, but prices are still very good for the quality of the accommodation and the location.
Nikole Boždarevića 7, (020 323 181/www.dubrovnik-palace.com) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Rates €50-€120/apartment. No credit cards.
Handy lodgings in the Old Town, each with a kitchen, fridge and washing machine. No arguing with the price, especially out of season; the facilities and furnishings have been improved.
Šubićeva 5, (021 332 549/www.apetit-split.hr) Email email@example.com, Open 11am-midnight daily. Credit V.
This splendid new venture from a Croatian who has spent many years in Berlin, lies on the western boundary of Diocletian’s Palace, near the Riva, and shares an old building, smartly done up. Green partitions, stone walls, bright art and simple furnishings make this a great place for an upmarket lunch. The traditional Dalmatian menu features home-made elements such as pasta and bread, includes a veggie corner plus plenty to appeal to meat and fish lovers. Round it off with home-made chocolate cake.
Obrtnički prolaz 7, (01 48 11 077/www.apetit.hr) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open 12:00 - 24:00 Mon-Thur; 12:00 - 02:00 Fri & Sat. Credit V.
Having spent several years building a solid culinary reputation in Zagreb‘s northern suburbs, the Bistro Apetit team have opened a branch in the centre. Bustling, busy but also moderately smart, Apetit City is intended for lunching city folk as well as more romantically inclined evening diners. The menu charts a course between modern European and traditional Croatian cuisine, including much that looks deceptively simple or old-fashioned – the fried calf livers with gorgonzola (85kn) are superb. Steaks and fillets of fish also feature on a list of mains that hover in the 90kn-145kn range.
Dragutina Domjanića 39, (01 204 3014/www.aquaparkadamovec.hr) Email email@example.com, Open 8am-10pm daily. Rates Day ticket 60Kn Mon-Fri, 70Kn Sat & Sun; 3-hour ticket 50Kn Mon-Fri, 60Kn Sat & Sun. No credit cards.
In the village of Belovar east of Zagreb (about 25 minutes drive, just off the main road to Varaždin), this privately-owned aquapark comprises indoor pool with geyzers and kiddies’ areas; outdoor pool surrounded by lawns and deckchairs; plus massage, fitness and wellness facilities.
Aleja Matije Ljubeka, (01 36 40 231/www.aquarius.hr) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open Café 9am-9pm daily. Club 10pm-6am daily. Credit V.
The one club on the Jarun lakeside to be open 12 months a year, this 2,000-capacity, two-floor venue, which opened in 1992, is still ahead of the field. This is largely due to its commitment to mixing danceable beats with innovative DJ styles, augmented by a regular agenda of live music (with international rock and world music predominating) and Dj sets by international big names. The two floors – Aquarius 1 and 2 – pump different sounds but do, on occasion, come together. Friday might feature anything from Goa Trance to RnB (check the website), while Saturdays usually see an eclectic mixture of cutting-edge House and electro presided over by chief resident DJ Martyn Negro. In summer, Aquarius opens its beach branch at Zrće at Novalja on Pag. Entrance fees range from 30kn for club nights to 120kn for gigs.
Kamenica beach, Komiža, (095 902 7701/www.facebook.com/aquarius.komiza) Email email@example.com, Open July, Aug 24hrs daily. No credit cards.
A real place to party on Vis island, Aquarius is an oasis where traditional island life and big-city rave intersect, by Kamenica beach just south of the town. The husband-and-wife team of Tomislav and Marcela are Split natives who fell in love with Komiža and were determined to bring something special to this quiet fishing town. Projections beam in the sea while foreign acts and DJs turn this beach disco into an all-night jamboree lasting long past the break of day. A younger crowd is peppered with up-for-it boating types and occasional celebrities, who stick around after the music for a reviving coffee while overlooking the waves. The thatched roof bar, canvas sheltered dance floor and low beach furniture help make sure that the lively atmosphere can also be relaxed when the music starts to fade.
Archaelogical Museum of Istria
Carrarina 3, (052 351 300/www.ami-pula.hr/) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open Summer 9am-8pm Mon-Sat; 10am-3pm Sun. Winter 9am-3pm Mon-Fri. No credit cards.
Many local Illyrian and Roman finds are on display here, a three-storey museum with English-language documentation. You’ll find jewellery, coins and weapons from Roman and medieval times, ceramics and fossils from pre-history, mosaics and sarcophagi.
Zrinjevac 19, (01 48 73 101/www.amz.hr) Email email@example.com, Open 10am-6pm Tue, Wed, Fri & Sat; 10am-8pm Thur; 10am-1pm Sun. Rates 30kn. No credit cards.
Established in 1846, the Archaeological Museum‘s extensive and well-labelled collection covers three floors, beginning with the Early Stone Age. The section on ancient Egypt includes sarcophagi, statues and jewellery: the 4th-century-BC Zagreb Mummy, wrapped in a shroud bearing rare Etruscan texts, is the museum’s coup de grâce and shouldn’t be missed. Other highlights include the Vučedol Dove, a 4,000-year-old ceramic vessel found near Vukovar and a symbol of peace in recent times; Greek and Roman artefacts; and coins through the ages. There are also continually changing temporary exhibitions.
Zrinsko-Frankopanska 25, (021 329 340/www.mdc.hr/split-arheoloski) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open June-Sept 9am-2pm, 4-8pm Mon-Sat. Oct-May 9am-2pm, 4-8pm Mon-Fri; 9am-2pm Sat. Rates 20kn. No credit cards.
On the other side of the National Theatre stands the Archaeological Museum where key historical finds from the nearby Roman capital of Salona are the main draw: mosaics, sarcophagi and such like. The displays cover the Greek and Roman periods, as well as pagan and medieval. All in all, a worthy attraction a shortish walk from the city centre.
Trg opatice Čike 1, (023 250 516/amzd.hr) Email email@example.com, Open July-Aug 9am-10pm daily. Rates 30kn. No credit cards.
Founded in 1832 but since rehoused in a modern building by the Forum, this museum is arranged over three floors. At the top is a prehistoric section of ceramics and weaponry; below is a Roman and Liburnian floor, including a model of how the Forum would have looked; and the Middle Ages are displayed on the ground floor, with beautifully carved stone panels and bizarre local gravestones. A new exhibition of antiques opens in June 2014.
Branimirova 29, (01 46 96 000/www.arcotelhotels.com) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Rates €94.50-€133.50 double. Credit V.
Owned by an Austrian chain, this was Zagreb‘s first designer hotel when it opened in 2003. The marble-clad lobby, with an aquarium and colourful fish, gives access to Joe’s Bar and the Mediterranean-themed Radicchio restaurant. The 151 uncluttered rooms come with good soundproofing, pine furniture, funky fabrics with portraits of celebrities (Kahlo, Picasso and Kafka) and DVD players. Look out for the world map, with a red dot marking Zagreb, on the blue carpets in hallways and rooms. The top floor has a sauna and gym, and rooftop views. Ask about weekend rates. It’s convenient for the city centre, the train station and the bus station – and therefore the airport.
Lanište ulica 32, ( 01 666 1411/www.arenacentar.hr/en/) Email email@example.com, Marketing email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open Shops are open Mon - Fri 10am-9pm; Sat & Sun 9am-9pm. Hours vary for other amenities.. No credit cards.
This huge shopping centre in south-west Zagreb is home to over 200 shops and kiosks, and features some big brands (H&M, Mango, Zara) as well. The large hypermarket, the international food court and various cafes are your options if you’re hungry; if you’re looking for entertainment, there’s bowling, the Game World Casino and the Cinestar Multiplex Cinema offers 3D, IMAX and Samsung 4DX screenings. There are allocated play areas for children, and around three thousand parking spaces; the centre also runs its own free bus service and is easily accessible by public transport.
Trg tri Bunara 1, (023 253 821/www.arsenalzadar.com) Email email@example.com, Open 9am-2am daily. Credit V.
Set in an expansive renovated 18th-century warehouse, Arsenal is unique in Croatia, in terms of size, ambience and the sheer variety of events and attractions. These include a gallery, cocktail bar and a popular à la carte restaurant upstairs. The spacious stage hosts world music, local klapa choral singing, name DJs and local bands. The sound is superb, thanks to installation by the Garden crew, and there’s a show of some kind most evenings. Tables between the stage and the bar allow for lounging, sipping and snacking from the extensive menu – the space is cleared for gigs and dancing.
Rampada 1, (020 711 720) Open 7am-midnight daily. Credit V.
Some of the best local food is to be found at Arsenal. This is the kind of place where locals flock, year-round, drawn by good inexpensive lunches. Arsenal’s Žrnovski makaruni, smothered in meat sauce, are something of a legend. Located to one side of the Old Town’s main gate, it enjoys a great position, although it’s a shame that outdoor tables are limited to a handful. The interior has a cosy village feel, with a semi-open kitchen behind the bar.
Branitelja Dubrovnika 25, (0(20) 311097) Open 10am-2am daily. No credit cards.
Something of a local favourite due to its outside-the-Old-Town location, this pop-art masterpiece boasts psychedelic comic-book murals, glow-in-the-dark tables and gaudily coloured bar stools. Out on the wedge-shaped terrace, settees made out of bathtubs provide the perfect place to relax over a choice of rakijas (13kn) and a long menu of smoothies (25-30kn).
Art Hostel Like
Vlaška 44, (01 461 6610/www.likehostel.hr) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Rates Dorm beds 140-200kn, doubles 380-690kn. Credit V.
Not so much a backpacker joint as a budget design hotel, Like stands out in the Zagreb hostel scene on account of the high number of doubles and family rooms in relation to bunk-bed dorms. Located on the second floor of a reasonably central block, rooms are decked out in minimalist white with flat-screen TVs and abstract art on the walls. Some come with a mezzanine floor onto which a couple more mattresses can be squeezed; perfect for groups of friends or families. Breakfast costs a few kuna extra and is served in an equally well-designed red-black lobby area, where there is also a bar.
Ulica Slobode 41, (021 302 302/www.arthotel.hr) Email email@example.com, Rates €90-€165 double. Credit V.
Opened in 2005 in a tastefully renovated factory building and now part of the Best Western group, the four-star Art offers 36 spacious rooms, large beds and modern facilities including a gym. There is a small gym and a wellness centre featuring sauna, steam bath and massage treatments.
Art Hotel Kalelarga
Majke Margarite 3, (023 233 000/www.arthotel-kalelarga.com) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Rates €130-€205 double. Credit V.
Opened in 2012, this ten-room boutique hotel occupies the laboriously renovated interior of an old stone house on Široka ulica – the main street popularly known as Kalelarga. Rooms feature exposed stonework, natural wood floors and furnishings, and a palette of soothing ochres and pastels. Moody lighting and smart modern bathrooms provide the requisite aura of cosy luxuriance. The chic top-floor apartment is snug under attic windows. Breakfast offers a broad choice of cold treats and the hotel’s cafe-restaurant is already hugely popular on account of its superb range of own-production cakes and sweets.
Art Lounge Bar Closed
Šubićeva 3, Open 8am-midnight Mon-Sat; 10am-2am Sun. No credit cards.
Bringing the outdoors indoors is one way of describing this enormous space. In effect, it’s a courtyard, with parts of the buildings that used to face it used as extra gallery space, The overall effect is impressive. From the orange-themed upper floors you can sit and enjoy your coffee or cocktail looking through the chrome railings over the ground-floor tables. From the ceilinged courtyard, you can sip while gazing up at flower-decked balconies, or look through the glass door to the bookshop next door. The additional space comes into its own at weekends when live DJs attract a cool Split crowd who may have treated themselves to an upscale dinner at Apetit.
Trg kralja Tomislava 22, (01 48 41 070/www.umjetnicki-paviljon.hr) Email email@example.com, Open 11am-7pm Tue-Sat; 10am-1pm Sun. Rates 30kn; 15kn reductions. No credit cards.
Created for the Millennial exhibition in Budapest in 1896, this impressive, iron-framed building was then shipped back to Zagreb, where it centrepieces Tomislav square facing the train station. It still regularly hosts major art exhibitions.
Art Public Bar
Carrera 88A, (091 519 1340/www.artpublicbar.com) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open 11am-midnight daily. No credit cards.
There’s a sign reading ‘Irish Pub’ over the arched alleyway that leads to this nugget of a bar, although everyone in Rovinj knows it as ‘Art’. A good place for a quiet drink on weekdays, when it fills up with customers from across the age spectrum, and good-naturedly rowdy come the weekends, it’s the kind of place that’s popular with locals all year round and pays little heed to the seasonal ebb and flow of that tourist trade. The recipe is very simple: Guinness and Kilkenny on draught, Irish whiskeys lined up behind the bar, live (usually acoustic) music on Thursdays, and DJ parties on Saturdays.
Artatore 132, (051 232 932/www.restaurant-artatore.hr/) Email email@example.com, Open 10am-midnight daily. Closed Nov-Feb.. Credit DC, V.
Restaurant Artatore, located in a pine forest a short walk from the sea, opened in 1972. Awards and acknowledgements include “The forgotten tastes of our fathers” project and 3 stars from local newspaper Vecernji list. From shellfish prepared any way you like, to fish and meat baked in a bread oven, there’s plenty to choose from.
Široka, (020 323 773) Open 9am-1pm, 5-7pm Mon-Fri. Credit DC, V.
This little gallery puts on regular exhibitions by local artists, as well as art workshops. The gift shop sells tasteful souvenirs, jewellery and albums related to Dubrovnik. Look out for books by Italian cartoonist Osvaldo Cavandolli. His drawings found inspiration in Dubrovnik thanks to gallery owner Tea Batinić, who invited him here a few years ago. The result was ‘Dubrovnik’, 35 stories written by Batinić, illustrated by Cavandolli.
Zelengaj 2A, (01 46 09 222/www.hotel-as.hr/restoran.php) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open 10am-midnight daily. Credit V.
Opened in the 1970s in Zelengaj Park and in the woods, AS is a pillar of the seafood dining scene in Zagreb. The interior is quite ornate, with white-linen tablecloths, oil paintings and a marble fireplace. In summer, diners clamour for the leafy terrace. The menu choices – top-class white fish from the Adriatic, lobster, octopus, squid – are always fresh. There’s also an extensive wine selection with a heavy emphasis on Croatian labels.
Trg Municipium Arba, (051 774 844/www.astoria-rab.com) Email email@example.com,firstname.lastname@example.org, Open May-Nov noon-3pm, 6-11pm daily. Credit V.
Attached to a small, family-run apartment hotel is this professional restaurant. With fine food, considerate service and an upstairs terrace overlooking the main square and harbour, this is one of the best choices in town. Top-quality monkfish and bass lead a dependable line-up of seafood, with steaks and vegetarian dishes too. Snappy table settings add a touch of class.
Grisia 13, (052 815 919) Open Summer 10am-10pm daily. No credit cards.
Set in a lovely, late Renaissance palace from the 17th century, this is where artist Dean Devescovi sells paintings with jazzy influences, a stand-out among Rovinj’s numerous galleries.
Don Ivan Matijaca 147, (020 715 882/.www.sylviagottwald.com) Email email@example.com, Open Summer only; only by request. No credit cards.
Highly individual, limited-edition jewelry by architect and designer Sylvia Gottwald, utilizing pearls, shells and other salvaged seashore materials, artfully juxtaposed with metals and rubber.
Kunićeva 2, Open Summer 9.30am-midnight daily. Winter 9.30am-4pm Mon-Sat. No credit cards.
Intriguing but affordable locally-made accessories, including necklaces and earrings fashioned from Adriatic coral, and bauble-like pendants made to traditional Dubrovnik designs.
Vrata pod Zidom 2, (091 732 9164 /www.ateliersottomuro.com) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open Summer 10.30am-10pm daily. No credit cards.
In this super little gallery, UK-raised Jan Ejsymontt purveys her acrylic paintings and jewellery.
Atelijer Galerija Brek
Fontica 2, (www.djuvedj.com) Email email@example.com, Open Varies. No credit cards.
A purveyor of quirky accessories and objets d’art, including earrings and brooches made by Zagreb designer Đuveđ from recycled electronica.
Trg Korčulanskih klesara i kipara 2, (099 232 7890) Open June-Sept noon-3pm & 6-11pm. No credit cards.
Known to Korčula regulars by its original name of U Maje i Tonke, this kooky and creative restaurant was re-launched as Aterina in summer 2014. The recipe for success remains the same: inventive use of local ingredients, married to modern, bistro-style presentation. The only potential drawback is its popularity – come here in August and you might have to wait for a table. The konoba built its reputation on cooking up Mediterranean main courses and nibble-food (‘Dalmatian tapas’ is the way they describe it) with anything that can be locally grown, caught or picked. Soups of the day, marinated fish, aubergines with goat’s cheese, pasta dishes with home-made pesto and creative cakes are among the treats in store. There’s a fantastic outdoor terrace with views of the swaying palm tops along the harbour.
Ulica Jurja Barakovića 6, (023 316 424/www.atrijzadar.com/) Open 08:00 - 01:00. No credit cards.
A stone’s throw from main street Kalelarga, Croatian Master Chef judge Mate Janković serves up fresh local ingredients in small delicious dishes; the wine selection is impressive and can be ordered by the glass. Decorated tastefully in a modern style that respects the building’s age, it also has a small terrace shaped like a wooden boat in two halves. After nightfall, Atrij becomes an intimate jazz bar with the odd soul performance.
Domovinskog rata 49A, (021 200 000/www.hotel-atrium.hr) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open 11am-midnight daily. Credit V.
The Hotel Atrium’s big ground-floor restaurant is increasingly recognized as one of the city’s prime culinary destinations. Here the traditional Dalmatian repertoire is jazzed up with an injection of modern European attitude. The kitchen sticks to a handful of top-notch dishes rather than attempting to cook up every Adriatic recipe under the sun: fishy mains are limited to fillets of sea bass served in inventive combinations of sauce and garnish, while there is at least one classic game, fowl and steak dish on the menu too. The risotto with spinach and asparagus is the perfect choice for a light and delicate lunch; while the Atrium’s take on Dalmatia’s favourite stew (pašticada) delivers satisfyingly generous portions of succulent meat.
Domovinskog rata 49A, (021 200 000/www.hotel-atrium.hr) Email email@example.com, Rates €96-€175 single; €100-€330 double. Credit V.
Located a brisk 15-minute walk north of the Old Town, the sleek hotel Atrium is set almost next door to the not-as-funny-as-it-sounds Joker Centre, Split’s leading shopping mall and a growing hub for cafés and restaurants. Behind a dark-glass exterior (look out for the remains of a Roman aqueduct in the lobby gallery), a seven-floor interior contains 124 large rooms and four suites, all done out very elegantly in wood and marble. It’s a great place to relax and decompress, with muted and soothing colours on the walls, a few good spots for a quiet drink, and staff who are helpful without straying into over-attentiveness. The Wellness centre offers superior saunas (infra-red and Finnish), a pool, jacuzzi and gym, the ground-floor restaurant is in the gourmet class and their Platinum Casino is the largest live gambling spot in Dalmatia.
Atrium Residence Baška
Emila Geistlicher 38, (051 656 111/www.hotelibaska.hr) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open Apr-Oct. Rates €70-€226 double. Apartments €80-€513. Credit V.
The most luxurious lodging in Baška. As close as you can get to the water without swimming in it, this quality establishment offers quiet rooms to the rear and five-star ones facing the sea. Most units are fixed up as studio apartments or suites, with kitchenettes and varying degrees of luxury. The best have more than 100 square metres of space, in-room saunas and outdoor jacuzzis on spacious private balconies.
Magistrala, (0(0) 98 9201964/www.auroraclub.hr) Email email@example.com, Open June-Sept 8pm-4am daily. No credit cards.
Set 2km (1.25 miles) south of town, Aurora was opened just as war was breaking out in May 1991. It has spanned many trends in dance music and hosted almost every known domestic DJ, plus international monikers. The first floor, containing a cocktail bar, steakhouse and pool tables, is open by day; after 11pm the second level swings into action: three dancefloors, an open-air palm-fringed area, six bars, pool and a chill-out lounge zone, all open till 4am. Carl Cox, Laurent Garnier and Roger Sanchez have all spun here. Expect foam parties, retro nights, R&B and hip hop, and a crowd of anything up to 3,500.
Uvala Oskorušica, (020 710 897/www.oskorusica.com) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, No credit cards.
Eight kilometres out from Korčula, this family-run site occupies an idyllic spot just east of the village of Kneža. It is shaded by olive, fig and carob trees, and near to a shingle beach.
Mokalo bb, (0 20 713 104/www.ponta.com.hr) No credit cards.
A small, friendly, family-run site on terraced ground, well-shaded by olives, pines and tamarisks. Pitches directly above the shore are reserved for tents.
Rodrigina 4, Open 8am-midnight Mon-Thur, Sun; 8am-2am Fri, Sat. No credit cards.
Excellent funky little bar, this – if you can find it. Rodrigina is the narrow street in the north-west corner of the palace. Either cut through the faux-Roman Divus bar on busy Bosanska, whose back door leads to Rodrigina, or turn left at the end of Majstora Jurja. Boutique and arty, with unusual pictures of fish on the walls, Ave attracts a varied but interesting crowd and offers a different take on the get-trashed-quick approach of most bars in the immediate vicinity. You can spy on courtyard bar action in the Majstora Jurja bar hub from the dinky back room.
Pobijana 10, (099 219 4385/www.azurvision.com/#!dubrovnik/crrl) Email email@example.com, Open Noon-midnight daily. No credit cards.
This superbly located newbie sits by the entrance of Buža II, and quickly went to number one on TripAdvisor in its very first season. Here you can tuck into a reasonably priced, Med-and-Asian-influenced main here – fragrant meatballs in a chicken-coconut broth, perhaps, or Adriatic prawn pouches on grilled aubergine in a red-curry-and-coconut sauce – before an afternoon’s sunbathing or nightcap overlooking the waves. Starters include mussels in beer butter and chili, and Dalmatian tom yum soup.
Korzo hrvatskih branitelja 23, (051 244 416) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open 9am-midnight daily. Closed Dec-Feb.. Credit V.
On a main street, opposite a souvenir shop, sits Azur’s terrace. Dishes include fuži pasta with octopus, risotto with nettle and škripavac cheese, ﬁgs in red wine with cinnamon and cloves and are reasonably priced; an appetizer, main course and dessert should cost you between 120-150kn.
Vetranovićeva 3, Open 7.30am-2am daily. No credit cards.
A side-project of the Revelin nightclub, this minimalist matt-grey café-bar just off the Stradun is the ideal big-night-out warm-up venue, with dance music on the sound system and disco lights casting shifting pools of colour across the ceiling. Graphics on the back wall present a traditionalist counterpoint to all this stylish modernity, with portraits of the Zelenci (‘Greenies’) – the weathered bronze figures that used to strike the bell of Dubrovnik’s main city clock.
Obala sv Nikole 89, Baška Voda, (+ 385 21 695 195, 021 695 190, + 385 21 604 890/www.hotel-bacchus.hr) Email email@example.com, Rates From €100/half-board per person. Credit V.
Near the beach and the centre of Baška Voda, the Bacchus is a renovated four-star whose rooms, suites and apartments contain king-size beds. Rates vary wildly; April and October are half the price of July. On site are a restaurant with a sea-facing terrace, an indoor pool and a sauna.
Bacchus Jazz Bar
Trg kralja Tomislava 16, (098 322 804/hr-hr.facebook.com/bacchusjazzbar) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open 11am-midnight Mon-Fri; noon.midnight Sat. No credit cards.
Just off the first square as you walk up from the station, the Bacchus Jazz Bar is an ideal place to meet friends, listen to jazz and either have a civilised party evening or get revved up for what’s to come. Relaunched as a jazz bar in 2008 after several years on the social margins, the bar exudes a homely Dalmatian feel: the owner is from Split, and there’s a fig tree next to the terrace, which is tucked into a passage off the street. Inside you’ll find a hodgepodge of wooden furniture: a 1960s-era television and telephone, and wooden-plank floors under a brick ceiling. It’s almost always busy, so tables will be at a premium. Wines, mainly Dalmatian, have been chosen to suit the mood. There are cocktails too, but few seem to be paying them much attention. Live poetry or spoken-word on Wednesday nights, live jazz or soul on Friday and Saturday.
Polačišće ulica 9 , (+ 385 23 779 042) Open 07:00 - 24:00 (Closed on Sundays and between 01.07 - 01.09 2014). No credit cards.
Back-Door Bar, as its name suggests, is a tiny, intimate bar with just enough space for a few people to squeeze in and enjoy the cosy atmosphere. With a 1920’s feel and red-brick walls, it’s particularly warm and inviting. Back-Door offers a selection of homemade rakija, beers, coffee, cocktails and local wines from the islands. Music tends to be jazz, bossa nova, soul, downtempo, lounge or blues; the staff are friendly and polite, another reason why it’s so hard to find a seat here. Reserved seats are available in advance – reserve a seat and settle in with a bottle of top-quality wine.
Badija Island, No credit cards.
An easy day trip, from Korčula town’s smaller east harbour, is the quick, regular taxi boat to Badija. This lovely pine-forested island, with its 14th-century monastery, is a haven for deer and naturists. If you take the regular 15-minute taxi boat to this pine-forested island, round the corner from the quay in front of the 15th-century Franciscan Monastery, paths lead to pebble beaches and hidden coves. Friendly deer roam free since being introduced a few decades ago, and are fed by visitors.
Angeli Radovani 5, (020 754 720/www.bakus.hr) Open 9am-midnight daily. Credit V.
Very much a Ston culinary landmark, Bakus serves some of the best fish and shells in the Adriatic and never goes overboard with its prices. Centrepiece of the menu is fine fish (290Kn/kg) cooked any way you like; but there’s a great deal more to choose from; dishes such as green pasta with seafood, baked shrimps, and black quid risotto all make excellent main-course choices. The broad-based wine list covers Pelješac’s best labels and a lot more besides.
Nova Ves 4, (01 46 66 999/www.restoran-baltazar.hr) Email email@example.com , Open noon-midnight Mon-Sat; noon-5pm Sun. Credit V.
This rustic-style restaurant attracts an upmarket clientele to its little Kaptol courtyard with its international offerings, traditional grills, seafood and regional meats from Zagorje and Slavonia. Duck, lamb and turkey are also featured. Service and presentation are impeccable, allowing the bill to creep up to 300kn a head with wine, but carnivores won’t begrudge it in the slightest. In summer a pretty terrace comes into its own. In the same courtyard, the Baltazar’s twin restaurant Gašpar is one of the best places in Zagreb to enjoy seafood, with fresh Adriatic fish grilled to perfection, and classic dishes like škampi na buzaru (whole unpeeled scampi in wine sauce; 220kn for a half-kilo portion) prepared and served with real panache.
Banova Vila Beach Bar
Šetalište fra Odorika Badurine, (098 442 038) Open 6pm-2am daily. No credit cards.
On the seaside walkway beneath the spot where Komrčar Park meets the Old Town, Banova Vila may not be paradise but get the right sunset with the right someone, and this little beachside bar will be damn close. A thatched roof and 25 types of cocktails, averaging around 30kn, help things along nicely. Everyone, the staff included, seems young and good-looking, and you can sip drinks by the sea until 3am.
Nikole Božidarevića 10, (020 323 160) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open 8.30am-12.30am daily. Credit V.
In business since 1979, this is the city’s most revered, and one of its cheapest, pizzerias. Set just off Stradun, it also serves pastas (lasagne, spaghetti), salads and breakfasts.
Barbat 366, (www.hotel-barbat.com) Email email@example.com, Open 12pm-11pm daily. Closed Jan-Feb & December.. Credit V.
The star of this hotel restaurant is it’s beautiful alfresco dining; a deserved winner of “best terrace” on several occasions thanks to the fine view and Mediterranean vegetation. It’s a great place to try traditional Rab Island dishes. You’ll also find a tank of lobsters, a display of prosciuttos and a museum of olives.
Podsolarsko 24, (022 350 666/www.apartmani-villa-barun.com) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open Summer 11am-11pm daily. Winter 11am-11pm Mon-Sat. Credit V.
Some 4km (2.5 miles) out of town, on the road to the Solaris hotel resort, family-run Barun has long been a favourite with locals out to impress their new date/in-laws/business associates. Located in a large modern house that is also a hotel, the first-floor dining room has a fantastic view over cultivated fields and offshore islands. The interior is as classy as the view – antique chairs, smart tablecloths and plenty of greenery. Established for over 20 years, Barun has a menu best described as upmarket traditional, with Italian and French influences well to the fore. A popular choice is steak: châteaubriand for two or biftek café de paris. Eight apartments are for rent too.
Na K Tomislava 2, (051 856 052/www.akvarij-baska.com.hr) Email email@example.com, Open Apr, May, Oct 10am-3pm daily; June-Sept 10am-9pm daily. No credit cards.
Below ground near the bus station, the recently opened Baška Aquarium comprises some 20 tanks containing more than 100 species of fish, as well as one of the richest collections of shellfish and snails in Croatia.
Baška Folk Museum
Kralja Zvonimira 28, (051 856 817 /www.tz-baska.hr ) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open Summer: 5-10pm. Rates 10 Kn adults; 5Kn children and groups. No credit cards.
Showcasing the region’s artistic and ethnographic treasures including original folk costumes.
Baška Glagolitic Path
No credit cards.
Dedicated to the ancient language of glagolitics and it’s writers, this meandering pathway will, when complete, end at Baška harbour’s old pier. Before which you’ll pass 35 stone sculptures, historical landmarks and significant natural areas.
Širolina 3, (099 831 9051/en-gb.facebook.com/pages/Caffe-bar-Bass/174073889307757) Email email@example.com, Open Summer 8am-midnight Mon-Thur; 8am-1am Fri, Sat; 10am-midnight Sun. No credit cards.
A great bar set between town and Verudela, Bass has a slew of beers, reasonably priced cocktails, sangría and rakija brandies. On the huge covered terrace are wooden benches aplenty, wicker, teardrop-shaped chairs and the rocking variety. Wifi is free. DJs play funky rock on Fridays.
1 Svibnja 1, (052 776 370) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open Summer 8am-midnight daily. Winter 10am-10pm daily. Credit DC, V.
Under the church tower, this large, imposing traditional restaurant is the main one in town. Fabulous local dishes include home-made sausage, rumpsteak with truffles and twisted pasta ties (fuži) with wild game. There’s a little bar with a piano in the back, and a few rooms to rent.
Obala P Budičina 2, (052 812 593/www.batana.org) Email email@example.com, Open June-Sept 10am-2pm, 7-11pm daily. Oct-Dec, Mar-May 10am-1pm, 4-6pm Tue-Sun. Jan, Feb by appointment only. No credit cards.
This is surely the Mediterranean’s first multimedia museum dedicated to a fishing boat. The vessel in question is the batana, the traditional, flat-bottomed wooden boat of the Rovinj region. Still very much in use today, the batana is a living symbol of Rovinj culture. A modern exhibition, the museum uses film, music and interactive exhibits. It provides a taste of the local lifestyle with guides in traditional costumes and creative workshops where you can try your hand at making fishing nets or demijohns.
Ćimulje 25, Banjole, (052 573 767) Open 5-11pm daily. No credit cards.
Out of town in Banjole, at the base of the Premantura peninsula, is this absolute gem of a seafood restaurant. Batelina is run by the friendly and welcoming Skoko family – who between them catch, cook and serve the food here – and the menu revolves around whatever is in that particular day’s catch. First courses are a particular highlight and might include dishes such as conger eel mouse, grilled scallops, steamed crab meat served in its shell, seared tuna steak, marinated sardines, and delicious anchovies and olives, all served with crusty home-made bread and the finest local olive oils. The mains centre on impeccably grilled fish – perhaps sea bass, perhaps monkfish – after it has been brought to your table for you to select. There are also home-made pasta dishes; an excellent, well-chosen wine list; and to round things off, a selection of mouthwatering home-made desserts (such as chocolate-and-chilli cake) and a clutch of local and home-made spirits, from grappa to biška, the latter deceptively strong but with the edge tempered by a touch of honey. Superb food and excellent service in an intimate setting all add up to one of the most memorable dining experiences in Istria.
Hotel Riva, (021 750 750) Open 11am-1am daily. Credit V.
In tune with Hvar town’s new cosmopolitianism, the BB Club appeals to the party-minded fraternity whose yachts gently rock on the bobbing waves in the harbour outside the restaurant door. A DJ spins on the waterfront terrace while mixologists fix quality cocktails – note the Hvar Rose Martini of vodka, Vermouth, grenadine and orange bitters. There are burgers, club sandwiches and Mexican dishes too.
Beach Bar Mate
Pupnatska Luka, Open July to mid-Sept 9am-10pm daily. No credit cards.
Located right behind one of Korčula’s best beaches, Beach Bar Mate augments the usual selection of cold drinks with some highly welcome extras, including home-made herbal syrups, Dalmatian pršut snacks, sandwiches made with home-baked bread, and Mate’s own wine.
Beertija & Klub
Slavka Krautzeka 12, (051 452 183/www.facebook.com/pages/The-Beertija-Rijeka/401627149938396) Email firstname.lastname@example.org, Open Open 8am-midnight Sun-Thur; 8am-4am 8am-4am Fri & Sat. No credit cards.
Uphill from the centre in Trsat but well worth seeking out, this Rijeka branch of Zagreb’s Beertija bar sticks to the same formula – a superb range of bottled beers from all over the world, and well-chosen weekend DJs. “Mingling”, Thursday’s eclectic-indie night, is one of the best pre-weekend nights out in the city. The next-door Klub (part of the same business but with an entrance fee) has live music 4-5 nights a week.
Belgian Beer Café Brasserie
Trg republike Hrvatske 2, (051 212 345/www.belgianbeercafe.com/doorpage?destination=bars/as/profile) Email email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, Open 6am-1am Mon-Thur, Sun; 6am-2am Fri, Sat. Credit V.
There’s a real brasserie atmosphere at the BBCB, located so close to the harbour you can see ships passing from the handful of tables outside. Inside is wooden, with Flemish inscriptions on the walls and almost authentic pissoirs. The Belgian dishes are hearty and the selection of compatriot brews have improved of late.