How to Spend 3 – 5 days Island Hopping in Croatia

Discover the best mainland and island destinations to visit on this three to five-day trip around Dalmatia. With this itinerary, you will visit two popular Croatian cities, Dubrovnik and Split as well as five Croatian islands – Lokrum, Korcula, Badija/ Vrnik, Hvar and Pakleni islands.

Island Hopping between Dubrovnik and Split in 3 to 5 Days – Brief Itinerary

DayHighlightsTransport Overnight
Day 1Arrive in Dubrovnik + Explore Dubrovnik’s Old Town Dubrovnik
Day 2Explore Dubrovnik’s Old Town + half day trip to Lokrum Island + Ferry to Korculaboat, ferry Dubrovnik or Korcula
Day 3Explore Korcula Old Town + visit Badija or Vrnik islandsferry/ bus / water taxi Korcula
Day 4Ferry to Hvar + Explore Hvar Town + visit Pakleni islandsferry/ water taxi Hvar
Day 5Ferry to Split + Explore the Roman ruins of Old Town Split + Departferry Split

This is a brief itinerary of the 3-5 day island hopping trip. You can shorten the whole journey by arriving in Dubrovnik in the morning and/or if you exclude Split, Hvar or Korcula. Any combination of the itinerary is doable as there is a ferry or bus at least once a day to any of these destinations.

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Dubrovnik + Explore the Old Town

Try to book your transport to arrive in Dubrovnik in the morning. It will give you the opportunity to settle in your hotel and still have some afternoon and evening time to explore Dubrovnik’s Old Town. Afternoon in Dubrovnik is to stroll to Stradun and a visit the Old Town’s medieval walls. Have an early evening drink while watching the sunset from a popular Buza cafe bar. More info on a few hours in Dubrovnik is here.

Lokrum island just off the Dubrovnik's coast
Lokrum island just off the Dubrovnik’s coast

Day 2: Dubrovnik’s Old Town + trip to Lokrum Island

Morning: Explore Dubrovnik’s old town, see Onofrio’s Fountain, Rector’s Palace, and Orlando Column. Visit the Old Pharmacy in a Franciscan monastery. Walk to the Dubrovnik old port and from there, take a small boat to Lokrum island.

Afternoon: At 4 pm take a ferry ride to Korcula island. The alternative transport is a 3 pm bus to Korcula Town. After settling in your accommodation, spend an evening enjoying a walk around medieval walls. If you choose to spend one more night in Dubrovnik, take following morning bus/ferry to Korcula. If you are spending the whole day in the city check this article.

Stradun, Cathedral,  Sponza and Orlando Column in Old Town of Dubrovnik
Stradun, Cathedral, Sponza and Orlando Column in the Old Town of Dubrovnik

Note: you can shorten your trip to 3 or 4 days if you skip any of the islands: – for 3 days, skip Hvar or Korcula, for 4 day’s itinerary, skip Split and get back to Dubrovnik by afternoon ferry.

Day 3: Explore Korcula Town and the Archipelago

Morning: Get up to discover Korčula Old Town’s medieval walls, forts and narrow streets dotted with numerous restaurants, taverns and bars. Visit local museums and circle walk around the Old Town and along the waterfront for lovely views (more info)

Early Afternoon: Take a water taxi for short, 10 minutes ride to Badija or Vrnik islands (or both indeed). On Badija, explore the local Franciscan monastery and its art gallery or head to Vrnik for coffee and visit to abandoned stone quarries.

Late afternoon & evening: Have a drink on the top terrace of Zakerjan tower (bar Massimo). Overnight in Korcula hotels.

Hvar Town & Island with Pakleni Islets
Hvar Town & Island with Pakleni Islets

Day 4: Visit Hvar Town and Pakleni Islands

Morning: Depart Korcula island by morning ferry to Hvar Town. Settle in your hotel and spend a day exploring the town. Walk along towns waterfront and from there get taxi speed boat for the afternoon trip to Pakleni islands that are just 15 minutes ride away. Spend time hiking or swimming in clear waters of the archipelago.

Late afternoon and evening: Get back to Hvar town, drink and dinner in one of the popular Town’s waterfront restaurants. Watch the sunset from there. Overnight in Hvar hotel.

Local fast ferries for great island hopping experience
Local fast ferries for great island hopping experience

Day 5: Discover Split and depart

Morning: Depart Hvar by morning ferry to Split. Spend the morning exploring the Roman ruins of Peristil and Diocletian’s Palace in the Old Town. Have lunch, coffee or drink in one of the restaurants or cafes in the picturesque Split harbour (Splitska Riva) or popular the Piazza square.

If you have more time, go for a short hike to Marjan hill on Marjan peninsula from where you can enjoy the stunning views over the city and Adriatic sea. This walk is particularly good if you wish to avoid afternoon heat in the summer. Depart in the afternoon or evening to your next destination.

Lovely picturesque waterfront promenade in Split, Croatia
Lovely picturesque waterfront promenade in Split, Croatia

Here are a map and details for some of the islands in this itinerary. Find detailed schedules on croatiaferries site.