Croatia Surfing Guide: From Summer Bliss to Winter Thrills

Text "surfing in Croatia, where?" and the photo of a surfer on the sea and the sunset in the background.

Croatia might not be known as a popular surfing destination but there are great surfing spots in Croatia that await someone to discover them.

Croatia, with its 1,777 kilometers long coastline is home to thousands of beaches, of which some are ideal for surfing and similar activities.

I conducted some research to discover the best surfing spots and the optimal surfing season in Croatia. Now, let’s explore what Croatia has in store for surfers who crave the thrill of riding corrugated waves, where wavelength and wind strength are the keys to their happiness.

When can you surf in Croatia?

If you’re wondering when to catch some waves in Croatia, here’s the lowdown. The summer season is perfect for beginners and those seeking a more relaxed surfing experience. However, if you’re an experienced surfer looking for a challenge, autumn and winter are your seasons of choice.

For beginners, it’s advisable to stick to waves no greater than 0.5 meters in height. Meanwhile, experienced surfers will find their thrill in waves around 1.5 meters high. You can typically find these wave heights at select spots in Croatia during the summer. As autumn and winter roll in, waves exceeding 2 meters become more common, providing ample opportunities for experienced surfers to test their skills.

These larger 2-meter waves are a result of the south wind wave known as ‘Jugo.’ While they may not always have the cleanest formation compared to popular surfing destinations, you can still have a satisfying surfing experience riding the Jugo waves.

Does Croatia have big waves?

In Croatia, the largest documented south wind wave, or ‘Jugo,’ reached an impressive 10.8 meters, while the biggest north-eastern wave, known as ‘Bura,’ hit 7.2 meters.

During the summer, Croatia typically experiences calm seas in the Adriatic, with waves rarely exceeding 0.5 meters. In fact, on most days, especially during the summer, the waves are even lower or practically non-existent.

This peaceful summer setting is a paradise for swimmers and snorkelers looking to enjoy the serene Croatian beaches. However, for surfers who rely on windy days and hope to catch those epic big waves, it might not be ideal news.

Nevertheless, there are a handful of special spots in Croatia strategically positioned to offer waves reaching up to 2 meters in height, even during the summer season!

Best Surfing Spots in Croatia

Bol, Brač

Last summer I watched a documentary on television about surfing in Bol and was quite surprised but its history.

While I no longer remember the documentary name or the authors, I remember that the man stated how they hosted one of the 7 European caps in the surf-slalom discipline, had world championships organized back in the 80s, and had a plan to organize professional world cup someday in the future.

Later, I checked to see what’s going on in Bol these days because the documentary could be outdated yet I found that surfing is still very popular there.

May to September seems to be the prime time for surfing on Bol from what I have heard, just watch the video below and you’ll know this is the right place for surfing enthusiasts!

Moreover, the famous Golden Horn Beach where the surfing activities take place is voted to be the top 5 in Croatia, so you won’t be disappointed even if you don’t catch the ideal waves on the day you visit.

Medulin, Istria

Nestled on the Istrian Peninsula, Medulin is known as a top destination for surfing enthusiasts. This coastal gem boasts a diverse range of surfing opportunities along its picturesque shoreline, there’s plenty of room for everyone and if we forgive the occasional inconsistencies with the waves this is an awesome surfing spot.

This area is also well-known for both windsurfing and kitesurfing, as these activities seem to attract many tourists and locals, especially during the summer.

However, from what I have seen, the sea is best for surfing after the summer, ideally in the winter or late autumn when the sea gets pretty mad and you can expect the 2-meter waves.

Baška, Krk

The island of Krk, and specifically Baška, provides surfers with a diverse range of conditions.

Whether you’re into paddleboarding on calm days or windsurfing on windy ones, Baška caters to surfers of all preferences.

If you are looking for big waves, Baška is an excellent place as it’s common for waves to get very big there as soon as the northeastern wave “Bura” strikes the region.

I can confirm this because I’d often travel to Krk, and on some days when Bura would strike the island, we’d have to wait for it to end before the bridge connecting the island with the shore would re-open.

The view of a disturbed sea from the shore always tickled my mind as I wanted to surf on the waves while waiting.

I found a video where the men took one of these opportunities to conquer the waves.

Sakarun, Dugi Otok

Sakarun Beach on Dugi Otok (Long Island) is a paradise for both surfers who want to be alone and beach lovers.

Here, the Adriatic Sea offers gentle waves, making it an ideal place for beginners to learn and practice their surfing skills and the wind is just strong enough to allow you a good ride.

The crystal-clear waters and serene surroundings add to the allure of Sakarun Beach, so it’s a good combination of peaceful surfing and sunbathing, out of the season there shouldn’t be many people on the beach, so you can hopefully own the entire sea and surf when the winds get stronger.

Kurile, Lošinj

Kurile Beach on Lošinj Island is another place I have in mind when it comes to windsurfing.

The crystal-clear waters of the Adriatic Sea provide the perfect canvas for your surfing adventures and Lošinj is a beautiful island you should visit if you visit the Kvarner region of Croatia.

Final take

The surfing spots I mentioned in this article are the places I have heard the most of or personally visited.

However, it doesn’t mean that there aren’t more good spots where people surf in Croatia, it’s just that I don’t want to spread misinformation and say how the waves and the wind are awesome without having any proof but random stories from strangers.

Thus, I’ll mention a few potential awesome surfing spots I currently haven’t explored but believe could be good spots.

Barbariga, Dajla, Duga Uvala, and Premantura in Istria could all be worthy surfing spots, but you’ll have to check the forecast for yourself and make a decision.

I believe that these spots are beautiful on their own even if the conditions aren’t ideal for surfing, so perhaps combine a more traditional itinerary of Croatian coastline and keep the surfboard in the trunk just in case!


Dino is a local who has spent 27 years of his life in Croatia. He's here to provide you with useful information and some local guidance.

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