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Advantages of a Small Ship Cruise in Croatia

If traveling on a huge ship jam-packed with countless others isn’t your idea of a pleasant vacation, a small ship cruise in Croatia might be the perfect alternative. Not only is the country one of the most sought-after destinations in Europe, but sailing on a more intimate vessel is much more comfortable and allows for a more authentic experience. The trips tend to be more personalized too, with local crew who can get to know every passenger by name and provide more attentive service due to the smaller number of people onboard. That’s just a brief look at the reasons so many love this mode of travel – here’s all you need to know about the advantages of a small ship cruise in Croatia.

Personalized Service

My Wish at anchor
View of Jacuzzi and sun loungers on My Wish

As noted, one of the big pros of a small ship Croatia cruise is the personalized service. With just 36 to 38 passengers on board and a crew-to-passenger ratio of 1:4, it’s much easier for the staff to get to know everyone on a first-name basis. The large, leading cruise lines often talk about providing exceptional service, but with thousands of guests on a huge vessel, remembering everyone’s name is pretty much impossible. On the contrary, small ship cruises mean that the crew will not only often address you by name, but also get to know your particular likes and dislikes for the utmost service. Plus, you’ll also get some great insider tips as most have in-depth local knowledge.

Expert Local Guides & Crew

St Blaise Church Dubrovnik
Aerial view of Korcula Old Town

Speaking of local knowledge, your Croatia vacation on a small ship cruise is enhanced even more by expert local guides and crew. That means whether you’re onboard or off, you’ll enjoy a personalized learning experience from the crew and tour guides. Tours are enjoyed in small groups which make it easier to interact with your guide, including asking questions while you explore. The knowledge that a local crew offers is sure to enhance your time discovering each destination. Passengers often learn a great deal about the places they’re visiting this way. Plus, the staff can provide recommendations for lesser-known attractions to enjoy during your leisure time, as well as fill you in on the local favorites for dining, shopping, and more.

Authentic Croatian Cuisine

Peka Croatia

One of the best ways to get to know any destination is through its food. One of the advantages of a small ship cruise in Croatia is that you can do just that. Guests enjoy breakfast and lunch onboard with evenings free to sample authentic cuisine in the local restaurants. While it may be a small country, Croatia boasts an unusually rich gastronomic scene with dishes significantly influenced by Italian, Austrian, Greek, and Hungarian culinary traditions. While some dishes can be enjoyed throughout the country, each region has its own unique dishes. In the islands and mainland seaside villages you visit, you’ll find lots of fresh-caught seafood and fish served alongside high-quality farm produce and regional or even locally produced wines.

Visit Secluded Locations

My Wish at anchor
Pakleni Islands

On a big cruise ship, the trips tend to be more about spending time on the vessel. One of the many advantages of a small ship cruise in Croatia is that the experience is more about the destinations. Those larger vessels simply can’t navigate to the same places the smaller ones can, which means you’ll have a much more well-rounded itinerary. They can dock at the smaller ports closer to town and tend to stay longer, giving you more time to explore. This makes for a more authentic experience that delves more into the local culture and way of life. Plus, during the daily swim stops, they can anchor in secluded bays or near hidden beaches for more memorable, uncrowded dips.

Included Excursions

Dubrovnik aerial
Krka Waterfalls

Not all small ship cruises are all inclusive but typically there is more included on a small ship cruise compared to the mainstream mega cruise ship. At Cruise Croatia, there are a range of activities and tours included in every cruise. The diverse array often touches on everything from nature and history to food, wine, and outdoor adventures. You might hike the scenic paths showcasing waterfalls and lakes in stunning Plitvice National Park or embark on a thrilling whitewater rafting excursion on the Cetina River. Perhaps you’ll travel back in time, following a local guide through ancient streets lined with incredibly well-preserved Roman architecture in Split. Wine-tasting experiences, food tours, and even cooking classes are sometimes included too.

More Sustainable

Croatia beach
Memories Ship

Those sprawling ships are typically powered by huge engines that emit dangerous levels of sulfur dioxide on top of the sewerage from thousands of passengers every single day. This contributes to air and water pollution, putting the environment, climate, the public health of coastal communities, and the health of fragile marine and coastal ecosystems at risk. A small ship Croatia cruise is much less damaging and can even help support local communities. Passengers spend more time in independent shops, eateries, and the like, for a win-win situation. Plus, with Cruise Croatia, when dining onboard, meals feature organic, locally sourced ingredients as often as possible. And, the vessels don’t sail for longer than four hours on any given day, using significantly less fuel. 

Make Lifelong Friends

My Wish swim stop
Restaurant tables on street in Dubrovnik

With such a small number of passengers on a small ship Croatia cruise, it’s much easier to get to know those who are traveling with you. The fact you’ve decided a small ship cruise is for you means that you’re likely to meet many passengers with common interests. Cruise Croatia in general tends to attract a lot of like-minded guests which is probably why so many have stayed in touch and sometimes even travel together on future trips. You can get to know your fellow passengers when you’re enjoying the various tours and activities together, or just hanging out on the sundeck. Guests often enjoy this social hub which has shaded lounging areas, spaces for sunbathing, and frequently, a Jacuzzi.

Hassle-Free Travel

Riva Promenade at sunset
My Wish Balcony Cabin

Last but not least, one of the top advantages of a small ship cruise in Croatia is that you’ll be able to visit multiple destinations without having to organize it yourself. It eliminates the stress of having to rent a car and navigate unfamiliar roads in a foreign country or researching other ways to get from point A to B to C. There’s also no need to constantly unpack and pack again throughout your trip. You’ll have plenty of activities and excursions to take part in that allow you to get to know the destinations, but you won’t have to sacrifice freedom with leisure time to explore on your own too. All that, plus insider tips from the knowledgeable, local crew.

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