Is Croatia Expensive? Typical Prices for Food, Drink & More

As well as being one of Europe’s finest travel destinations, we’re delighted to report that Croatia is also truly excellent value. 

Croatia (for now) sits outside the Eurozone – still using its own currency, the Kuna. As such you’ll like-for-like costs a lot more competitive than near neighbors, and more established destinations, such as Greece, Italy, and Spain. 

In this guide, we run through your typical travel budget when traveling to Croatia: what you can expect to spend on hotel accommodation, shopping, travel, drinks, and food. 

Money in Croatia

Croatian currency Kuna
ATM

Croatia’s Kuna currency is used for most purchases throughout the country, including on-board our small ship cruises. In larger hotels, restaurants in established tourist towns Split and Dubrovnik, and when making large souvenir purchases, both Euro and Kuna can be used interchangeably. 

Nonetheless, we still recommend exchanging into Kuna for the bulk of your spending. As a relatively ‘exotic’ currency, you’ll always get better exchange rates converting to Kuna once in-country, rather than at home before you travel. Note that money changers will charge a small commission to exchange – you’ll find the best rates in established banks in major towns and cities. 

In Zagreb, Split, Dubrovnik, and Hvar you will have the opportunity to use your credit cards and also withdraw funds from ATMs. Outside of these locations ATMs are less frequently found and can also be unreliable in accepting foreign cards. 

 

Accommodation Costs in Croatia

Esplanade Hotel, Zagreb
Table setting overlooking Dalmatian Sea

Accommodation in Croatia is also generally good value compared to popular nearby destinations such as Italy and Greece. 

Accommodation costs are highest in Dubrovnik and Split – the two most popular tourist destinations in Croatia. Here you’ll find rates of around USD 200-350 per night for a high-end 4* or 5* hotel. A decent quality mid-range hotel or Airbnb can be as little as USD 100 per night. 

While in Croatia’s islands, national parks, or other major cities you can expect to pay around 10-15% less than this. Prices then come down considerably if timing your trip to Croatia during the off-season winter months, or shoulder season early Spring or late Fall.

 

Costs of Food and Drink in Croatia

Cocktail - generic
Seafood in Croatia

Croatian food is both delicious and, in most places, excellent value. 

In the very best restaurants of major tourist destinations Dubrovnik, Split, and Hvar, a two-course dinner excluding drinks and tips will be around US$80. At the opposite end of the scale, a similar meal in a mid-range restaurant will be around US$40. For context, a meal in a typical fast-food restaurant will be around US$7-8. 

Average prices for restaurant and bar drinks are equally competitive. A 500ml glass of draught beer will be around US$5. A 330ml bottle of imported beer is similar. A bottle of mid-priced wine will be around US$30. 

A 1L bottle of mineral in a restaurant will be around US$4; in a local supermarket around US$1.50. A cappuccino in a cafe or restaurant is around US$3-4. A cocktail, or spirit and mixer, around $6-8. 

Tipping is usually around 10-15% as standard in restaurants and bars. Hotel porters or taxi drivers might appreciate US$1-2.

 

Transport Costs in Croatia

Coastal road down to Adriatic Sea
Tram in Zagreb

During our bespoke tours of Croatia, you’ll typically be provided with fully private transport services throughout – including all airport transfers, and road journeys between destinations. All your internal transport will be built into the price and taken care of, so you have nothing to worry about! 

Independent travelers however should be aware that public transport in Croatia is generally very good. There are just a few major train lines, connecting for instance Zagreb and Split, but prices are keen and comfort levels high. An intercity bus network is also comprehensive and will get you to all corners of Croatia. 

Intercity transport is mostly by bus. Single journeys in Zagreb, Split, or Dubrovnik, are typically priced at US$1-2. To save money in the capital city, 24-hour public transport passes can be bought for around US$5. This gives you access to buses, trains, and trams; signage is in both English and Croatian. 

Croatia’s road network is comprehensive and of excellent quality, so many visitors choose to rent a car to get around the mainland. A popular route is from Zagreb down to the coast, stopping in at Plitvice Lakes National Park en route. The coastal roads are also gorgeous. Rental car prices are usually around US$8-120 for a four-day rental, excluding insurance and fuel.

 

Sightseeing Costs in Croatia

Dubrovnik city walls
Yacht off Hvar

Any tours or attractions including in your small ship cruise or tailor-made tour will all be included in our package price – so these costs do not need to be considered.

Should you be visiting Croatia independently, costs for sites and attractions are generally pretty keen. A tour of Dubrovnik’s city walls is priced at around US$10; while a private boat ride to the Blue Cave and Hvar will be around US$150. Remember to make purchases in local kuna as this will always work out cheaper than using Euro or USD.

More information on our market-leading Croatia Cruises can be found here. Contact our dedicated Croatian specialists today to begin your journey: email customerservice@cruisecroatia.com, or call on +1 844 637 9747 in the USA or +44 203 950 9613 in UK and Australia, to start planning your getaway now!

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