Kornati Islands Escape

The Kornati Islands form the archipelago that lies between Pag (in the North) to Sibenik in the South, including the beautiful Kornati National Park. With hundreds of islands to explore, this area offers a chance to eschew technology and truly get off the grid – in some of the more secluded areas you could go a whole day without seeing another soul, a real escape from reality!

These islands of the National Park have some fantastic marine life (if that’s what you’re into) and since many of the islands aren’t inhabited you may well feel like an explorer discovering a new world!

What’s the weather like?

The weather is a great pull for Croatia, with low 20’s in May and October and a lovely 30 degrees plus in peak summer. The prevailing wind in Croatia is a north westerly, with an average of a force 4 to 6. A wind to keep an eye out for is, the ‘Bora’ which is a north easterly that can be a surprise for those who’ve not checked their forecasts.

National Park Fees

Along with the perks of the National Park there is a fee to pay which you can read more about here. Please do also be aware that you will be required to pay marina and port fees. These fluctuate depending on the size of the yacht and location, but can be anywhere from £20 to £80 per night. The facilities in Croatia are, in general, very good with showers and shore power widely available.

Days 1 – 2, Arriving at the base

Once you’ve arrived at the base be it Sukosan or Biograd (or Sibenik if you’re starting your sail from further south) then you’ll be met by the charter company who will handle your check-in. Once all the paperwork is filled in they’ll show you to your boat and give you a briefing and then it’s over to you! Time to relax and unwind on your first night, in all of our starting bases there’s plenty to see and some great restaurants for a traditional Croatian meal.

A good first sailing destination is Vrgada. Vrgada is famous for sandy beaches popular among the naturists. Pebbly and sandy coves, pleasant pine groves and Mediterranean vegetation will delight any visitor in search of a peaceful holiday.

Another great option is to sail southward to the island of Murter. Dock in one of the Marinas in Murter or anchor off in the bay for a night under the stars. Murter is a great stop over as there’s plenty of restaurants and shops if you want to provision – why not pick up some of their famous olive oil! There’s also a few nightclubs for those wanting to put their dancing shoes on and even an outdoor cinema.

Murter Island Beach Yachts  Biograd Panoramic  Marina Dalmacija Sukosan  Vrgada
Murter                                  Biograd                                Sukošan                              Vrgada

Days 3 – 6, Venture to Vodice & beyond

Further to the south you can reach Vodice and participate in its rich nightlife or continue through the Šibenik Canal to the Marina Skradin. The following morning you can tour the Krka Waterfalls, one of the most beautiful Croatian National Parks.

At this point on your trip we’d recommend starting to sail back to base. Head towards the Kornati archipelago and choose among the many bays and two Marinas – Piškera and Žut – your home for the night!  Piškera is a particular favourite amongst boaters because it is located halfway through the Kornati National Park, and is surrounded by a mosaic of islands and islets, rocks and lighthouses. Although Zut island is uninhabited, in peak season there’s a marina with facilities making it a good stop. The island is nicknamed the yellow one and is the second largest island in the Kornati’s.

Skradin aerial      Murter Island Beach Yachts  Zut  Vodice  Piškera
Skradin and the Krka Falls   Murter                                  Zut                                        Vodice                                  Piškera

Days 7 – 8, The return leg

After Zut, it’s best to begin your return leg heading back north through the islands. You have one full day to examine the islands of Ugljan and Pašman. Choose your route to Sukošan northward around Ugljan, southward around Pašman or through Ždrelac pass (if your mast isn’t too tall)!

Since it’s the last day it’s time to return back to your base, charter companies usually expect you to be back in between 4-6pm the evening before the day of departure. Make sure you leave enough time to refuel and have the boat ship-shape before handover.

Marina Dalmacija Sukosan

Days 1 – 2, Arriving at Sukošan

Once you arrive at the base and have checked-in with the charter company they will show you to your yacht. Here you’ll have a briefing about the boat and then it’s over to you to relax! We advise a cold beer!

Now since you don’t board your boat until the afternoon it’s time to explore Sukošan and see what it has to offer.

Marina Dalmacija Sukosan

Days 3 – 6, Cruising down the Croatian Coastline

A great starting point out of Zadar is to head south down the coastline exploring stops on your way down and inland to the renowned Krka Falls.

Spend a night in Biograd, which in Croatian means ‘white town on the sea’. Here you’ll find a delightful promenade to take a moonlit stroll with some fantastic food to try out.

After this you could continue south to Murter, a small island separated from the mainland by a small channel (this channel has a bridge which moves to let yachts through but it only opens for 30 minutes each day at 9am and 5pm in peak season, so make sure you plan ahead!). Here you can sample some of the islands incredible homegrown olive oil and there’s also often an open air cinema which can be a nice alternative evening experience.

Further south still from Murter why not sail down to the island of Kaprije. Here there’s a lovely harbour to moor overnight in and a nice touch is that every morning the fresh bread arrives on the quay at 9am.

Our next recommendation is to head inland and sail up the inlet towards Skradin and the Krka Falls. These famed falls are a wonder to the eye and are well worth a visit, their beauty can be seen from many walking routes.

Skradin aerial       Kaprije Marina  Murter Island Beach Yachts  Biograd Panoramic  Zadar
Skradin and the Krka Falls  Kaprije                                  Murter                                  Biograd                                Zadar

Days 7 – 8, Sail to the southern tip of the Kornati’s

If you ventured up the channel to Skradin then a great stop on your way out is Zlarin. Zlarin is known as the ‘Golden Island’ because of its untouched beauty. The island is tiny and only has one small village and the fishermen here can often be seen diving for coral.

After this we recommend heading the most southerly point you can reach in two weeks, Primosten. Primosten is a magical spot on the Adriatic coast. The town is famous for three things, its vineyards, one of its beaches, Mala Raduca and its nightlife.

You’d be surprised that this little town, with small quay and nice waterfront restaurants, comes alive in peak season with the club Aurora which is set at the top of hill being a popular drinking hub.

Zlarin  Primosten Sunset
Zlarin                                    Primosten

Days 8 – 11, Island hopping for days

Leaving Primosten you can either stop off on the island of Zirje or you could head further afield, around a 25 mile sail up to Gustac. Here you’ll find nothing but you, the islands untouched beauty and the ocean. If you fancy a night under the stars and being the only boat in the bay then this is a great stop. Just make sure to stock up before you go!

From the peaceful and uninhabited Gustac a short sail over to Zut is a great idea, now this is another uninhabited island so you’ll need to provision for two days of the route. Katina on the island of Zut is another untouched beauty. It’s good to note here that the passage between Katina and Dugi Otok is only 100m wide and 2m’s deep whereas if you enter on the south side of the island through the Vela Provesa channel it’s 500m wide and much deeper!

After these two peaceful days it’s time to see another soul (and restock on provisions!), we suggest the very short hop over to Sali. Here you’ll be able to not only stock up on food but there’s also shore power and water available and there’s a cocktail bar that’s worth a visit! The picturesque Telascica Nature Park is also here if want to get some great shots for the holiday album.

Sali  Zlarin Red Coral  Generic Yacht Sailing Croatia  Central Dalmatian Islands
Sali                                        Katina                                  Gustac                                  Zirje

Days 12 – 15, Last few days, last few bays

For the last few days we advise continuing north hopping between Veli Liz, Brbinj and Soliscica before heading back to Sukošan for your final night.

Take your pick or visit all three if you have time, Veli Liz is a great one if you’re looking for those picture perfect beaches Croatia is famous for and the island is home to some of Croatia’s unique pottery.

Brbinj is less than a 10 mile sail from Veli Liz and this quaint little town has just three traditional restaurants to choose from but it also has some ancient ruins to explore.

After this if you’ve got time and would like one more night of peace and quiet, why not sail further north on Dugi Otok island up to Soliscica. You’ll find little here so provisioning is a must but who wouldn’t want to spend their last night under the stars surrounded by this beautiful landscape.

On your last day it’s time to return to your base, be it Sukošan, Sibenik or Biograd. Most charter companies like you to be back the night before between 4-6pm which gives you one last evening to explore the town and soak up all that Croatia has to offer before your flight home the next day.

Soliscica  Brbinj  Veliz Iz Panoramic  Marina Dalmacija Sukosan
Soliscica                              Brbinj                                    Veli Liz                                Sukošan