Croatia : Safety by City
Croatia is country located in Central Europe, to the east side of Italy, or more specifically, to the east side of Adriatic Sea. It shares borders with Slovenia to the northwest, Hungary to the north, Bosnia and Herzegovina to the southeast, Serbia to the east and Montenegro to the south. Croatia offers possibly the prettiest coastline in the entire Balkan Peninsula, with turquoise blue sea and perfectly kept beaches, and most of its cities have impressive historical centers with architecture typical for Croatia.
Beaches of Croatia offer a completely different experience than its cities and little towns, so it’s worth seeing both. The most famous town is Dubrovnik, which is the prime example of the typical coastal architecture, yet Zagreb, the country’s capital is a modern city with all the contemporary elements and landmarks, with a laid back feel to it. As for Croatia’s countryside, it’s scattered through the region of Slavonija, and filled with vineyards and wine cellars.
Warnings & Dangers in Croatia
OVERALL RISK : LOW
Croatia is overall a very safe country to visit, even compared to other countries in Europe. However, there is some petty theft in the main cities though using your common sense should get you out of any trouble.
TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : LOW
Transportation and taxis are generally safe and reliable in Croatia, but be careful when asking taxi drivers for recommendations of clubs or bars as you might get ridiculously overcharged at those places, and be extra cautious on public transport.
PICKPOCKETS RISK : MEDIUM
Even though Croatia is not exactly known for pickpockets, it is still recommended to remain vigilant, especially in larger cities such as Zagreb, Split etc.
NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : LOW
Croatia is located on a seismically active spot, but serious earthquakes are extremely rare. Apart from that, there are no threats of natural disasters.
MUGGING RISK : LOW
Muggings do not happen in Croatia, nor do kidnappings. However, it is best to avoid poorly illuminated areas of Zagreb, which are mainly parks, for example "Ribnjak Park" or "King Tomislav Park". Also avoid the "Zagreb Bus Terminal", mainly because it is located close to the area where bars and clubs are crowded together which is why the areas is filled with intoxicated and aggressive people.
TERRORISM RISK : LOW
Even though were no terrorist attacks in Croatia's recent history, tourist should remain vigilant and be aware of their surroundings at all times.
SCAMS RISK : MEDIUM
Croatia is a country where you could get scammed, so you should check your change twice, and never let your credit card out of site. Be wary of people trying to distract you offering you unwanted help, since it might be a trick to steal from you.
WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK : LOW
There are no risks for women traveling solo in Croatia. You can relax, but still remain careful and stay out of dangerous situations such as finding yourself alone with strange people, or in poorly lit or empty streets.
So... How Safe Is Croatia Really?
Croatia is a safe country to travel to. Crime rates are low and even petty crime is not a serious issue here. Still, you should exercise caution when in larger cities such as Zagreb, and common sense should keep you out of any trouble.
When at the beach, be very careful not to get sunburns. Even though there are no ozone holes over Croatia, it’s fairly easy to burn so make sure you use adequate SPF.
Some estimates say there are around 90.000 landmines left in Croatia since the war ended in 1955. Even though these are not located on places frequented by tourists, it is better to keep in mind that you shouldn’t stray off the beaten track without consulting the locals. Areas suspected of being riddled with mines are marked with 16.000 warning signs.
Avoid strip club at all costs. They are run by Croatia’s underground and shady characters, often with bouncers ready to beat you senseless if you say you aren’t ready to pay ridiculous prices for what you ordered. There have been reports of a bottle of champagne costing 2000 euro. Since you aren’t likely to strike a deal with the bouncers, it’s best to avoid these shady places completely.
- Visas - For most countries, visas are not required for stays under 90 days. Any longer than that, you will have to obtain a visa. You should also own a password valid for at least six months from your planned date of return. If you are not sure about your visa status, visit www.doyouneedvisa.com which will let you know whether or not you need visa based on your nationality and the country you want to visit.
- Currency - Croatian kuna is the official currency in Croatia. ATMs are widely available throughout the country and credit cards are accepted in most establishments such as hotels and restaurants. However, smaller restaurants, business, shops and private accommodation owners will probably require cash payment.
- Weather - Croatia has a warm temperate Mediterranean climate characterized by dry and warm summers and mild, wet winters. The best time to visit Croatia is probably in May-June or September-October, when you can enjoy the warm sunny days without the tourist crowds mingling along the streets.
- Airports - Franjo Tuđman Airport, often referred to as Zagreb Airport, is the biggest and busiest international airport in Croatia. It is located around 10 km south-east of Zagreb Central Station at Velika Gorica.
- Travel Insurance - Just like anywhere else, we recommend getting travel insurance when traveling to Croatia, since it covers the costs of not only medical problems, but also theft and loss of valuables.