This quick 4-day sailing itinerary is perfect for travelers short on time who love the sun and the sea. You'll set sail on a private boat from the coastal city of Split to visit the lavender island of Hvar—one of the most popular islands in Dalmatia—as well as the island of Brač, well-known for its rugged beauty. Swim, snorkel and cruise your way over the sparkling Adriatic to discover a taste of Croatia's island charm.

Highlights

  • Dine on fresh-caught seafood and traditional Dalmatian cuisine in Split
  • Swim and snorkel off the coast of Brač Island
  • Discover the 16th-century Španjola Fortress on Hvar
  • Cruise amid the 14 wooded and rocky Pakleni Islands

Brief Itinerary

Day Highlights Overnight
Day 1 Welcome to Split! Split
Day 2 Sail from Split to Hvar via Brač Island Hvar Town
Day 3 Sail from Hvar to Split via the Pakleni Islands Split
Day 4 Depart Split  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Welcome to Split!

Split
Split

From the airport, it's a short (45-minute) drive to the center of Split. Depending on your arrival time, check into your hotel and take the rest of the day to explore the historic port city on your own. 

Founded 1,700 years ago by Roman emperor Diocletian, Split's Old Town consists of a number of impressive sites, including Peristyle, Cathedral of St. Dominus, and Diocletian's Palace, one of the best-preserved Roman buildings in the world. Start in Peristyle Square, taking in the 3,500-year-old sphinxes Diocletian brought back from Egypt before exploring the 4th-century complex. From there, pass through the Iron Gate and into Pjaca Square for pretty views of white marble tiles, a Romanesque clock tower with the remains of a medieval sundial, and the 15th-century Town Hall

In the evening, take a stroll along Split's seafront Riva to admire the waterfront views before finding the off-beat Konoba Dioklecijan restaurant, just to the left of the Bronze Gate for a bite to eat, its outdoor terrace built into the walls of Diocletian's Palace.

Day 2: Sail from Split to Hvar via Brač Island

The island of Brač
The island of Brač

This morning you'll take a private sailboat from Split to sail in and around the island of Brač. The largest of the central Dalmatian islands, Brač is bursting with historic sites dating back to Ancient Greece and the Middle Ages. You'll make your first stop at one of the island's hidden bays for swimming and snorkeling, and if there's time and interest, perhaps a short hike. Enjoy the morning sun as you relax and delight your senses with the sound of the waves and a chance sighting of dolphins (if luck is on your side).

In the afternoon, you'll then continue your sailing journey to Hvar, where you'll spend the night aboard the boat, anchored in the Hvar harbor.  Hvar is a popular destination with tourists due to its natural setting, mild climate, and its historic port town of the same name. Depending on timing, you might like to explore some of Hvar Town's highlights: the 13th-century walls, the 16th-century Španjola Fortress, and the main square anchored by the Renaissance-era Cathedral. 

Day 3: Sail from Hvar to Split via the Pakleni Islands

Enjoy a day of sailing
Enjoy a day of sailing

Pull up anchor this morning and set sail to snorkel and swim the bays and inlets of the Pakleni Islands archipelago as you make your way from Hvar to Split. A collection of 14 wooded and rocky islets, the Pakleni Islands are the most beautiful part of the Hvar Riviera and are a favorite retreat for locals and the rich-and-famous seeking to escape the summer heat. 

Upon arriving back in the historic coastal city in the late afternoon, you can make your way to Bačvice Beach to get your land legs back as well as relax on the sand warmed by the day's sun before choosing a nearby restaurant for dinner. An excellent option is Dvor, a café-restaurant featuring contemporary Dalmatian dishes and for something sweet, find your way to Perivoj, a popular dessert spot in one of Split's oldest pleasure gardens.

Day 4: Depart Split

Wander Split and discover its ancient buildings
Wander Split and discover its ancient buildings

If you have a free morning before departing, check out the Green Market (Pazar Market). A lively fruit and vegetable outdoor market just east of the Diocletian Palace, this is a great place to see how the locals shop and to pick up some fruit for your flight home. Farmers from the surrounding areas of Split come into town every day to sell their seasonal local produce from sunrise to 2 pm. 

Depending on traffic, it usually takes 45 minutes to travel from Old Town to the airport. Best to arrive at the airport at least two hours prior to your international departure (and with some extra time to drop off your rental car, if you have one).