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In the northern part of Kvarner Gulf lies Cres, a Croatian island that can be easily reached by ferry from Rijeka or the island of Krk. Covered with dense primeval forests, the island of Cres boasts a wild, natural allure of hidden coves, soaring cliffs and ancient hilltop towns. Low-growing vegetation covers the western part of the island, while the eastern side is rich in deciduous trees. We’ll cover things to do, beaches to visit and where to stay on one of the best islands in Croatia, Cres! 

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Best Things To Do in Cres

Cres has several villages worth the visit. All of them are connected by a road that runs down the island. Here are the most interesting ones:

  • Lubenice – a historic village located on a 378-meters-high cliff that offers stunning panoramic views. With its beautiful architectural examples, pebble beaches, and plenty of chapels, Lubenice is a must-visit. During summer months, you can enjoy weekly music concerts under the open sky. 
  • Valun – a picturesque fishermen village located between two pebble beaches surrounded by pine forests (Valun beach is a recommendation!). The village is only accessible by foot but full of bars, shops, and houses leaning on each other. 
  • Osor – an ancient village founded by the Romans. During the summer months, the whole village is marked by art events and music festivals. Today, due to its protected harbor and small bays, Osor is an important location for seafarers. Moreover, from here you can reach the island of Losinj via a moving bridge.
  • Punta Kriza – a small village located far from the main road but with beautiful sea views. It is only accessible by a narrow road, so if you are looking for a spot to escape the hustle and bustle of the cities, this is a place to be. Enjoy nature, find peace in oak forests or observe wild animals. A naturist Camp Baldarin is located 3 km from the village.
  • Martinscica – a popular vacation complex full of beach bars, café bars, and beaches. Here you can also find Camp Slatina, a camp that has several times been awarded as the best campsite in Croatia. 

The island of Cres has several attractions worth putting on the itinerary such as:

  • Museum of Cres – Ribarska ulica 7, 51557, Cres, Croatia
  • Venetian towers from the 15th century – Melin V 8, 51557, Cres, Croatia
  • Remnants of the city walls
  • The only Roman bridge on the east coast of Adriatic
  • Lake Vrana – A fresh water lake located in the middle of the island, it is the largest Croatian lake by volume and one of the deepest freshwater lakes in Eastern Europe

The island of Cres has several attractions worth putting on the itinerary such as:

  • Museum of Cres – Ribarska ulica 7, 51557, Cres, Croatia
  • Venetian towers from the 15th century – Melin V 8, 51557, Cres, Croatia
  • Remnants of the city walls
  • The only Roman bridge on the east coast of Adriatic
  • Lake Vrana – A fresh water lake located in the middle of the island, it is the largest Croatian lake by volume and one of the deepest freshwater lakes in Eastern Europe

Interesting fact: the island of Cres and the neighbouring island of Losinj once used to be one island, separated by an 11-meter-wide channel. Today, a swing bridge connects Losinj and Cres, so if you have time hop over the bridge and put another island on your Croatia island hopping tour.

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Best Beaches in Cres

When it comes to beaches, the island of Cres offers various ones: 

  • Slatina beach is one of the most popular and beautiful beaches on the island. With all necessary facilities such as restaurants, cafes, beach bars, Slatina also has a diving center, water aerobics sessions, as well as kayaks and boats for rent. 
  • Kovacine is a popular beach among families with children. Surrounded by steep cliffs, Kovacine is a pebble beach that has a shallow water and all the basic amenities. In addition, it offers fun activities such as beach volleyball, tennis, fly boards, and renting pedal boats. 
  • Meli – a beautiful sandy beach with crystal clear sea. However, keep in mind that there is no vegetation so you won’t be able to find a shady area to escape the sun. 
  • St Ivan’s Beach – a white sand beach with intact nature and Mediterranean luscious vegetation. Nearby you can find a sea cave called Plava Grota. 
  • Stara Porozina – a wild pebble beach completely crowd-free is perfect for romantic couples, adventure seekers and those searching for solitude.

Check out my travel vlog on Island Hopping in Croatia below!

Where to Stay in Cres

Want to stay for awhile on one of the best islands in Croatia, Cres? Check out my accommodation ideas below: 
 
Best Boutique Hotel in Cres –  Bed & Breakfast Palac: This quaint B&B offers great breakfast and a superb location in the heart of Cres. 
Best Luxury Villa in Cres – Villa Antiqua – Roman & Venetian Heritage: How about a beautiful private villa for you stay on the island? With a private pool, hot tub, garden and 3 bedrooms to yourself, it’s sure to be a relaxing stay. 
Best Budget Hotel in Cres – Rooms Piazzetta: Located in the heart of old town Cres, this budget stay is a great option. Clean, updated and steps to restaurants and bars. 

Let me know in the comments if you plan to visit one of the best islands in Croatia, Cres!

Disclosure:  Please note that some of the links above are affiliate links, and at no additional cost to you, I earn a small commission if you make a purchase.   I only recommend products that I personally know and use, and the income helps to keep this site updated and free for everyone.

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