Tourism is one of the most important economic branches of the Republic of Croatia, which also includes nautical tourism. Nautical tourism refers to tourist and recreational sailing on the sea, but also on lakes and rivers, and docking in marinas and ports, and it is most often considered an elite form of tourism.
Nautical tourism in Croatia has been present since the end of the 19th and the beginning of the 20th century, when the Austrian dukes and even the German emperor William II cruised along the Istrian coast and Brijuni on their yachts. With the construction of more and more marinas in the 20th century, the popularity of this form of tourism is growing. What has favored the development of nautical tourism in Croatia is the extremely indented coastline with more than a thousand islands and many bays, but also very favorable conditions for sailing during a large part of the year. In addition to the attractiveness of the landscape and the favorable climate, the piers with large capacities where many ships can be anchored are key. In recent years, there has been an accelerated development of nautical tourism in Croatia, especially nautical charter, i.e. the commercial segment of nautical tourism in which tourists rent vessels and equipment.
The main carrier of nautical tourism in Croatia is Dalmatia, and up to 33% of all ports of this activity are located in Zadar County. Although the greatest interest is in June, July and August, boaters are present on the Adriatic coast already from March until October. The most popular destinations are: Hvar, Korčula, Dubrovnik, Split, Cres, Makarska, Sukošan, Biograd na Moru, Zadar, Mali Lošinj, Vodice, Skradin, but also the Istrian cities of Umag, Pula, Rovinj, Poreč, etc. Croatia is becoming a well-known nautical destination in Europe and the world, and the most numerous foreign guests among sailors are Germans, Austrians and Britons, but many Italians, Czechs, Poles, Slovenians and even Americans also come.
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