If you are planning to visit Croatia, you may wonder if is worth the costs and challenges. Visiting another country (read Croatia or Hrvatska) can reward you in many ways but you will definitely run into situations you would not face at home. This specially regards USA tourists.
Here are some points to consider when you think about visiting Croatia:
What is there for me?
There is always something special to visit a country where history happened and left the deepest traces. Croatia is definitely the country where history has preserved many Greek and Roman ruins like famous Diocletian palace in Split or Pula amphitheater, medieval walled cities like "eternal town of Dubrovnik or Korcula town on the same name island.
Some travelers prefer to immerse themselves in another culture, trying everything from local foods, visiting local grocery, open-air markets, take walks in unusual places, experience festivals or local traditional ceremonies. Croatia is the right place for this, just to mention Split town fish market or one of the many local summer fruits and vegetables markets on one of the many islands. Don't miss Split and Dubrovnik summer festivals or famous "Moreska" battle game on Korcula town.
For some vacationers, it's all about the food. You might want to sample all the dishes you have seen or you have heard. I am sure you will like the Croatian cuisine, specially the one along the coast, a typical Mediterranean, very similar to Italian with one exceptions: Pasta is not the first and the most important meal. Fresh fish, fresh vegetable, lamb meat (try the island Pag lamb), smoked ham, Pag island cheese and very good local red and white wine.
Perhaps Croatia has not jet become your dream destination but if you want to visit a "New Tuscany" or a "Small Venice" on the other side of the Adriatic Sea than you should visit Hrvatska.
Combining travel with learning experiences can keep your brain as healthy as the rest of your body, and it will be a fun to find out that Croatia is the country where "the necktie or kravata" has been introduced for the first time. Did you know that Croatia is the homeland of the first fountain pen, invented by Slavoljub Pankala. You will find out that the parachute was invented by Faust Vrancic …….
Wonders of the World
Visiting Croatia you will not see any of New 7 Wonders of the World but you will be definitely delighted by Croatia's Wonders like Dubrovnik "The pearl of the Adriatic", Diocletian Palace in Split, Trogir and Sibenik cathedrals, Pula's amphitheater, Saint Donate in Zadar .
Many travelers decide to visit their ancestors' homeland on their first trip abroad. Genealogy is an extremely popular hobby, and there's nothing quite like doing your research on-scene. You might see the buildings your ancestors lived and worked in. Perhaps you'll meet a distant cousin. Finding new information about your ancestors and immersing yourself in their culture will add new dimensions to your family history research.
What problems could you encounter?
Learning a few words in Croatian language can be a intimidating experience. But you should not worry because English language is very common in Croatia specially in hotels. If language barriers bother you, but you'd still like to visit Croatia, consider traveling with a tour group.
Croatia is not expensive as other tourist destinations like Italy, France or Spain. The capital city, Zagreb, is equally expensive for lodging and parking as any other EU capital. Food is still cheaper then elsewhere and better than most. You will find that rates for a holiday in Croatia are very reasonable and more economical at this time than in other places in the world.
It is quite safe to travel all over Croatia and mugging and thefts are not a problem. You can safely walk in any town at night, but use your common sense, as always.
You do need a passport to enter Croatia but you do not need entrance visa.