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Croatia is seriously hot on the travel radar these days, and with very good reason indeed. Aside from popular Dubrovnik, the Adriatic coastline is teeming with fantastic beaches to enjoy, no matter who you’re traveling with, when you’re going, and what you’re going for.
Now, do you prefer sand or pebbles?
This might sound like the oddest of questions, but when it comes to getting your beach day right, it’s important to get the foundation right too!
If you’re traveling with kids in Croatia, then there’s no denying that building a sandcastle or two is the ideal pastime, and for that you need sand; pebbles simply don’t do the job!
If you’re looking for the fun sandy beaches in Croatia, perfect for a family day out, check out these choices; there’s sure to be a beach to suit your needs, and put simply, all of them are blindingly beautiful too.
Lopar Beach, Island Of Rab
Situated on the beautiful island of Rab, just off the north coast of the mainland, you will find Lopar Beach. This is a popular choice, especially during the peak summer months in July and August, when you will find crowds in abundance. This shouldn’t put you off, as provided you get there early enough, you will find your spot on the fine, white sand.
How do you get there? You need to get the ferry obviously, and the easiest way to do that is to head to Jablanac and take the ferry over to Misnjak; this route takes around 15 minutes, but you can also get ferry connections from Jablanac, Rijeka, or Baska.
Why is this so great for kids? The beach is wide and set in an arc-shape, which means it is sheltered from winds and sea currents. The water is calm and shallow, ideal for splashing on the shore, and there aren’t a major amount of water-sports going on, so it’s much safer for the little ones.
Bačvice Beach, Split
Found right in Split’s city center is one of the most well-known beaches in the world – Bačvice Beach. There is something for everyone at this beach. Bačvice is known for relaxing swimming conditions and plenty of watersports to keep you busy all day long. Kids of all ages enjoy spending the day along the shores of Bačvice Beach. There are pavilions along the beach for changing and dressing. At night, the beach comes alive when all of the bars and clubs are lining the beach open their doors. The local sport of picigin originated at Bačvice Beach.
Grebišće Beach, Hvar Island
Hvar’s best sandy beach for families is Grebisce which is located on the north side of the Jelsa Harbour – it’s nothing flashy, but the kids who want to make sandcastles will love it. Just remember to pack the baby powder for when you’re ready to head home.
Sakarun Beach, Dugi Otok
If you’re looking for a beach that looks like paradise, then your search is over! Clear, calm water, without major crowds, all adds up to a perfect family choice. The smaller beaches and bays around Sakarun are fun to explore with the family. Put simply, this is one of the most famous beaches on Dugi Otok – and in the Zadar Region.
Sakarun Beach is situated on the north-west coast of Dugi Otok, and it’s easy to get there from Bozava via a shuttle, which runs every couple of hours there and back again. Cafes also surround the beach, so you won’t struggle to find a cold drink to keep everyone hydrated in the hot summer heat.
Aside from looking like something from an advert, Sakarun never gets overly crowded, and the sand is comfortable to walk on. The sea is clean and calm, and the surrounding pine trees mean there is always shade when the kids get a bit too hot and bothered. On top of this, the water isn’t deep, only 3.5m at its highest point near the shore, so kids can easily splash around (with supervision, of course).
Saplunara Beach, Mljet
This is undoubtedly a hidden gem! Many of the sandy beaches in Croatia are slowly succumbing to mass tourism. However, this one has managed to hold onto being totally untouched. The calm, serene vibe means everyone will be chilled out at the end of the day, and because the area is protected, i.e., you can’t camp or litter, you know you’re in for a slice of child-friendly paradise.
There are no large hotels around Saplunara Beach, so this will be a day out which you can paint up to the kids as an adventure. You will need to take the ferry to Sobra, and then drive, get the bus or a taxi. The road is beautiful. However, a little unsafe in places – so take only bigger kids and embrace the craziness!
Velika Plaza, Omiš
Omiš is a large town, and it has several sandy beaches to choose from, yet Velika Plaza is the main beach in town, making it the easiest to get to, and the largest.
Backed by cafes and restaurants, you can easily feed and water the kids without major hassle, and the warm, shallow waters mean it is safe for kids to splash around, making sandcastles at the shoreline. The beach is also effortless to reach from the town center, literally a few steps away, and there are activities to keep everyone occupied, including football and beach volleyball.
Vela Przina Beach, Korčula
Now, the only problem with popular beaches is that they tend to get a little crowded during the peak months. The answer? Simple really, just get there early enough and really make a day of it.
Vela Przina Beach is located on the southern coastline of the island, set in a secluded bay, making the waters calm and shallow, ideal for kids. Again, there are plenty of cafes and restaurants around, helping you answer those ‘I’m hungry’ moans, and there are plenty of parasols on offer too, to give you shade in the sometimes very intense summer heat.
How to get there? From Korčula town, you simply jump on the bus, and within 15 minutes you are on this beautiful sandy beach for the day.
Ičina Beach, Vrsi
6km northeast of Nin is the little resort town of Vrsi. The town is comprised of quarters, including one called Zukve. Zukve has two beaches – one pebble and one sandy. The sandy beach is known as Ičina Beach, and it offers easy access to the sea. Food and coffee bars along with an amusement park, are available in Zukve, making it a great stop for families.
Bay Lovrečina, Island Of Brač
Tucked along the island of Brač’s northern shores you will find a little cove known as Bay Lovrečina. Here, waters are shallow, azure, and clear, the sun is plentiful, and nearby pines provide shade. We suggest you try your hand at Picigin – it’s an ideal location for this traditional Croatian water game!
Visitors can reach the beach by foot, car or boat and a local restaurant offers refreshing drinks or a bite to eat for beach-goers.
Also, important to note, not only does this beach have sandy shores, but nearby Roman archaeological sites also make it a great spot for cultural exploration.
Queens Beach, Nin
There are many sandy beaches around the Zadar-Nin area, but this one is probably the best. The waters around this beach change regularly, depending on the wind and weather, which makes for fantastic sandcastle building! There is also plenty of room for running free in total safety, which is always a must when you’re having a family beach day.
You can reach the beach within a few minutes from the center of Nin. However,r you will need to park up in the nearby forest and walk the few steps to it; bear in mind that during peak season you will need to pay for parking.
As a side note, the kids will love the mud pools that are created around the shallow parts of the shoreline.
Prapratno Beach, Peljesac Peninsula
This stunning, sandy beach is tucked into a little bay just 3km west of Ston. Known for clear, warm, shallow waters, this beach has become a favorite along the Peljesac Peninsula. With a nearby cafe for afternoon snacks & drinks, close proximity to the bus and ferry terminals, and campground accessibility, it’s a convenient, relaxing stop for anyone traveling through the Peljesac Peninsula. The natural surroundings of pine and olive trees make for a picturesque day at the beach, perfect for the whole family.
Iza Banja Beach, Sv. Filip And Jakov
Found right in the center of Sv. Filip and Jakov is Iza Banja beach, which is a combination of sandy and pebble shores. The beach has been awarded the prestigious Blue Flag status, offering guests crystal clear waters and wonderfully clean facilities. Pine trees offer shade from the sun’s rays and the waters are shallow with a gentle slope, making it great for young swimmers.
If you need a break from the water, volleyball, pedal boat rentals, and playground equipment are available. Also, important to note, this beach is staffed with lifeguards!
As far as fun-filled sandy beach days go, these will more than meet your needs, and guess what? There are loads more to be found all across Croatia – Other places in Croatia you can find sandy beaches are in Pelješac, Murter Island, Baska Beach on Krk Island, the Dubrovnik Riviera has several, Cres Island and many, many others.
Slanica Beach, Murter
The largest and most popular beach in Murter, on the west side of Murter Island, Slanica Beach is a combination of sand, pebbles and rocks. It’s one of the most beautiful beaches in this part of Croatia, featuring several facilities and amenities that will make your visit extremely comfortable.
There are beach showers, there’s natural shade, beach bars and restaurants, bathrooms, umbrellas, and beach and water sports opportunities, including jet skiing, beach volleybal and tennis.
Paradise Beach, Rab
There may not be a lot of sandy beaches in Croatia, especially when considering the sheer number of Croatian beaches overall, but Rab Island’s Paradise Beach is one of the absolute best. This is the most famous and largest beach in Lopar, locally known as Rajska Beach.
About 1.5 kilometers long, it boasts Blue Flag status, which indicates the quality and cleanliness of the water, as well as the preservation of the natural environment as a whole. You’ll also find numerous amenities at Paradise Beach, including beach volleybal and other sports facilities, a kids playground, beach chairs and umbrellas, showers and bathrooms, waterfront bars and restaurants.
A beach is a personal choice, so head out there and explore and report back to us! If we missed your favorite sandy beach in Croatia comment below so we can add it.
Other Tips For Traveling With Kids In Croatia
More family travel advice can be found here, to help you and your family get the most out traveling Europe with kids. But for Croatia, here are our top tips: