7 Best Islands near Split, Croatia You Need to Visit (2024)

Split Croatia

Are you looking for the best islands near Split? I’ve got you covered!

If you want breathtaking landscapes, charming villages, pristine beaches, and crystal clear waters, then the Croatian islands near Split are the spots for you!

I spent two weeks traveling around Croatia, I had the pleasure of exploring the best islands near Split, and I can confidently say that they are some of my favorite islands to visit in Croatia.

From the pristine shores of Brac to the vibrant charm of Hvar and the hidden beauty of Vis, these islands are pure paradise and easy day trips from Split.

Split port is the starting point for visiting islands from split

Split is a gorgeous Croatian city, there’s no doubt about that. But its main charm is its proximity to the Dalmatian islands, home to some of the most beautiful places in Croatia

From exploring ancient ruins and snorkeling around Croatian coral reefs to tasting local dishes and watching traditional performances, the Croatian islands from Split are full of wonderful things to do!

If you’re looking to add some island time to your Split vacation but don’t know where to start, look no further. Here are the very best islands near Split to add to your itinerary!

My Top 3 Picks: Best island hopping from Split tours

TOP #1

best islands off split croatia

⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐

Five Island Speedboat Tour Featuring the Blue Cave and Hvar

✔️ Full-day speedboat sightseeing excursion

✔️ Visit Hvar, Ravnik, Budikovac, Vis, and Biševo

TOP #2

Alquilar un barco en Formentera

Blue Lagoon, Shipwreck & Solta cruise with lunch & unlimited drinks

✔️ Full-day cruise around three different islands

✔️ Delicious lunch with wine served on board

TOP #3

Town Bol in Island Brac Croatia

Blue Lagoon & 3 Islands Half-Day Speedboat Trip from Split

✔️ Half-day tour including Blue Lagoon, Solta Island, and Trogir

✔️ Round-trip transport provided from Split

Best Islands to Visit Near Split

Beach in Brac island near Split

1. Hvar island

  • Best for: Vibrant nightlife, stunning beaches, and historic charm.
  • Distance from Split: Approximately 50 km (31 miles).
  • Highlights: Hvar Town, Pakleni Islands, Fortica Fortress.

Hvar Island is one of the most popular and beautiful destinations in Croatia, and it’s one of the most popular islands to visit near Split! 

Hvar is one of the best islands to visit in Croatia from split

There’s a reason why most boat trips from Split make a stop here. From its pristine beaches to its charming cobblestone streets, the island of Hvar is a truly unforgettable destination.

What most people don’t know, though, is that it’s where millionaires and backpackers alike come to party the night away! 

Hvar Town is where the party starts, and it’s full of lively beach bars and buzzing nightclubs. Stroll along the harbor in Hvar old town and you’ll get a real glimpse into how the other half live – because their superyachts are all docked there!

During the day, the town of Hvar is surprisingly calm and civilized. 

Hvar Town from the Ocean in Croatia

You can’t miss hiking up to the Tvrdava Fortress for unforgettable views of the ocean and surrounding islands. It’s quite the trek in the summer sun, so you’ll definitely want to cool off and take a swim at one of the town’s many pebble beaches afterward.

Stari Grad is the other main town on Hvar island, home to the captivating Tvrdalj Castle, the idyllic Škor Square, and, of course, plenty of wonderful restaurants serving up huge portions of epic Croatian food. You won’t want to leave!

If you have more time, you can also visit the neighboring Pakleni islands, off the southwest coast of Hvar island.

2. Brac island

  • Best for: Pristine beaches, water sports, and natural beauty.
  • Distance from Split: Approximately 20 km (12 miles).
  • Highlights: Zlatni Rat Beach, Vidova Gora, Bol Town.

Have you ever wanted to get off the beaten track and discover a hidden gem? Well, look no further than Brac – the island of sunshine, rugged beauty, and unforgettable experiences. 

Located just off the coast of Split on the Adriatic coast, this stunning location is a must-visit when it comes to exploring Croatia’s islands.

Brac island is one of the Croatia islands near Split

Besides arriving by ferry, if you want to get there faster and more easily, you can take this private water taxi from Split to Brac Island.

Picture incredible white sandy beaches and dazzling turquoise waters. Add charming old-fashioned towns and picturesque coves. That’s Brac Island

The main town of Brač is Bol, home to one of Europe’s best beaches. Here, you can enjoy an evening stroll along the waterfront, watching the sunset over the horizon.

The famous beach we’re talking about is Zlatni Rat Beach, also called the Golden Horn, which is the most photographed beach in Croatia

Zlatni Rat beach in Bol, one of the most beautiful beaches in Croatia

There are plenty of other things to do in Bol, though! Windsurfing is huge here, as is hopping on a boat ride to explore some of Brac’s beautiful bays. 

The Vidova Gora mountain is another Brac highlight, popular amongst hikers, which offers breathtaking views of the island and the water below. 

Aside from its awesome beaches and stunning coastline, the island of Brac also attracts plenty of historians eager to explore the ancient ruins and Roman remains scattered throughout Bol.

3. Bisevo island

  • Best for: The mesmerizing Blue Cave and untouched coastal scenery.
  • Distance from Split: Approximately 57 km (35 miles).
  • Highlights: Blue Cave (Modra špilja), Bisevo’s stunning coastline.

Bisevo is a tiny island located just off the coast of Split – and it’s home to one of the most impressive natural wonders in Europe; the Blue Cave. This magical sea cave draws visitors from all over the world due to its shimmering deep-blue turquoise waters.

Blue Cave Carved in the Limestone in Busevo Island near Split

This Blue Cave tour from Split includes entrance fees, boat transport, lunch, drinks, and even ice cream! A full day to discover the islands’ lesser-seen gems, caves, and secret uncrowded beaches and taste the local gastronomy.

To be honest, the only reason people visit Biševo island is to see the Blue Cave. Aside from this, Bisevo is just a tiny and barely uninhabited island, with nothing much else to see or do. 

So, what makes the Blue Cave so special?

Visitors flock here every summer for a glimpse into this unique marine phenomenon. As you enter the cave through the narrow entrance you’ll be met with a jaw-dropping sight. 

The water is illuminated by mysterious and vibrant shades of blue which come from the outside sunlight reflecting off the white sandy bottom. 

Blue cave in Bisevo island, one of the top things to do when you visit the islands around Split

You can’t visit the Blue Cave independently – you have to register on Bisevo Island and then wait for your ticket number to be called, so that you can be escorted to the cave by a local guide. 

The wait time can be pretty long – especially in summer months – so it’s worth joining an island hopping tour from Split to make the most of your day and see a few more islands. It’s definitely one of the best island day trips from Split!

4. Korcula island

  • Best for: Rich history, medieval architecture, and vineyards.
  • Distance from Split: Approximately 123 km (76 miles).
  • Highlights: Korcula Old Town, Marco Polo’s House, Vela Przina Beach.

When it comes to islands near Split to visit, it sometimes pays to travel for longer. That’s because the island of Korcula, which is around 130 km from Split, is one of a kind. 

Plus, it’s still considered “near” Split in the grand scheme of things. Thanks to its remote but accessible location, Korčula is the perfect slice of relatively untouched Balkan beauty.

Wooden sailboat in Korcula Island near Split

⛵ This Half-Day small-group boat Tour around Korcula Archipelago includes boat transport, lunch, homemade wine, and use of snorkeling equipment. It’s the perfect trip with lots of free time to swim and snorkel in the beautiful Adriatic Sea!

Kick off your adventure in Korkula town, the main port on the island and home to some of Croatia’s best seafood restaurants

Take the time to explore its narrow cobbled streets and various historical sites as you wander through a city that was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2017. Culture vultures will be in their element here!

Continue your journey by venturing further inland, where you’ll find rural villages nestled amongst rolling hills and lush vineyards – perfect for wine lovers! 

Vineyard in Lumbarda Korcula, Croatia

Lumbarda, a small coastal village, is the wine capital of Korcula, and the perfect place to head if you fancy an afternoon of sipping local wines and exploring vineyards.

Want to get off the beaten path? Head to Badija Island, located just off the coast of Korčula. 

Here, you can bask in peaceful surroundings as you explore the small island’s monastery and its secret pebbly beaches. Personally, I think it’s one of the most beautiful islands to visit from Split.

It’s also home to some of the top snorkeling in Croatia, so don’t forget your mask and flippers! And if you are wondering if are there sharks in Croatia, don’t worry, encounters with them are very rare.

5. Solta island

  • Best for: Tranquil beaches, traditional fishing villages, and olive groves.
  • Distance from Split: Approximately 16 km (10 miles).
  • Highlights: Stomorska, Maslinica, Necujam Bay.

We’re heading off the beaten path again because the little island of Šolta is far quieter than the big names we’ve already covered on this list. 

Solta’s peaceful surroundings and unspoiled beauty make it an ideal destination if you’re looking for an island close to Split to get away from it all.

Ruined houses in the village of Grohote Solta island

The largest settlement on the island is the village of Grohote, where you can wander through a maze of narrow cobbled streets and ancient stone buildings. 

Be sure to stop in at one (or more) of its many bars and restaurants for traditional Dalmatian dishes such as grilled sardines, try the local olive oil, or a glass of their renowned Marastina wine. Yum!

There’s not a whole lot to do on Solta Island other than wandering around and relaxing on the beach, but sometimes that’s exactly what you need.

There’s no doubt about it – Šolta is one of the best islands near Split when it comes to relaxation.

Solta Island is one of the best islands off Split Croatia

Round out your time in Solta with a sunset walk around Rogac harbor – where you’ll witness stunning views of this magical landscape morphing into dusk – before finishing your day off with a starlit dinner at one of Rogac’s many waterfront restaurants. Solta is magical!

6. Vis island

  • Best for: Untouched natural beauty, secluded coves, and vibrant underwater world.
  • Distance from Split: Approximately 47 km (29 miles).
  • Highlights: Stiniva Beach, Komiza Town, Fort George.

The island of Vis is one of the most popular islands near Split, but this is a fairly new phenomenon. 

You see, back in the days of Yugoslavia, people weren’t actually allowed to visit Vis. It was used as a naval base and closed off to the public. Now that it’s open, people are making up for lost time and visiting Vis in droves!

Komiza town in Croatia

One of Vis’ highlights is Komiza – an old fishing village located on the western side of the island.

Its traditional atmosphere is still very much present today, from its winding alleys to its cozy seafood restaurants, making it one of the best places to experience genuine Croatian culture. 

It may look a bit familiar… That’s because Mamma Mia 2 was filmed here

⛵ This full-day private tour will take you to the best locations of the famous “Mamma Mia: Here We Go Again” movie and to the most important places to visit on the island.

Take a leisurely stroll around this charming little port, maybe whilst playing Abba in your earphones, and take in all its beauty; from its small harbor with colorful boats to the sprinkles of white pebble beaches.

Another great place you can’t miss on Vis island is Stiniva Beach, once voted the most beautiful beach in Europe. Definitely worth visiting!

Stiniva Cove in Vis Island near Split

It’s hidden away amongst towering limestone cliffs and you can only access it by foot or sea. Either way, the journey to get here is well worth it.

Vis isn’t just about gorgeous fishing villages and pretty beaches, though. 

If you’re into the rich history, don’t miss Fort George – a 19th-century fortress built by British soldiers during their stay at Vis. The twist is that nowadays, it’s been transformed into one of the coolest bars on Vis.

7. Ciovo island

  • Best for: Beaches, water sports, and proximity to Split.
  • Distance from Split: Connected by a bridge to Split.
  • Highlights (must-sees): Okrug Beach, Trogir (historic town), Church of St. Theodore.

Ciovo is close to Trogir, so many people don’t actually realize that it’s an island – but it is! Ciovo is connected to the mainland via a bridge, making it one of the closest islands to Split.

Beautiful houses at Ciovo island from the sea

Start your journey on this overlooked island at Arbanija Beach – one of Čiovo’s most popular spots! 

A long stretch of turquoise water awaits you here, which is perfect for snorkeling or swimming around as well as sunbathing if you can handle the pebbly surface of the beach!

Fancy more beach time? No problem – Slatine Beach is another must-visit whilst on Ciovo. With its white pebble sand, crystal clear sea, and stunning views over the ocean it’s no wonder this spot is such a hit with tourists!

Slatine beach in Ciovo Island from the air

Don’t miss Okrug Gornji while you’re here! This captivating seaside village is tucked away on the southern coast of Ciovo Island. 

From rocky coves where you can go kayaking or stand-up paddleboarding to picturesque churches where you’ll find ancient relics dating back to the 5th century, there are heaps to do here!

Islands near Split Croatia Map

What to Pack to Visit the Islands Near Split

You may not have thought about it, but there are a few things you definitely need to pack to visit the islands near Split! 

Here are my top recommendations:

  • Make sure you drink plenty of water and stay hydrated during your visit to Split’s nearby islands. The best thing is that you will have no problem finding water, as you can drink tap water in Croatia!
  • Water shoes are essential for visiting the beaches in Croatia and exploring the islands off Split. Almost all beaches are pebble beaches, meaning that even just walking to the ocean can be super painful! Save your feet and pack some water shoes.
Split is the perfect starting point for island hopping
  • A quick-dry towel is the best thing you can pack if you’re heading to the beach and don’t want to be lugging around a wet towel all day. They fold up into a tiny ball, making them easy to pack, sand doesn’t stick to them, and they dry fast. What’s not to love?
  • Reef-friendly sunscreen is a must-pack so that you can protect your skin without polluting Croatia’s ocean and marine life.
  • Going for a paddle or swim at the beach but don’t want to leave your valuables unattended? Then a waterproof phone lanyard is the perfect solution! Simply pop your valuables in the clear pouch and you won’t have to worry about them washing away. Plus, you’ll be able to take any selfies or videos underwater! 
  • Check the ferry schedules in advance and arrive at the port early to secure your tickets, especially during the high season.

FAQ about  the best Croatian islands near Split

  1. Can you visit islands from Split?

    Yes, you can visit islands from Split via ferry or boat tours.

  2. What islands are near Split?

    The most popular Croatian islands near Split include Brac, Hvar, Vis, Solta, and Ciovo, among others.

  3. How do you get to the Split islands?

    You can get to the Split Islands by taking a ferry or boat from Split’s main port. Ferry services are available, and boat tours can be arranged for island hopping.

  4. What islands can you visit from Split?

    From Split, you can visit the islands of Brac, Hvar, Vis, Solta, Ciovo, and many more. These islands offer stunning beaches, rich history, and charming coastal towns to explore.

  5. What is the best island to visit from Split?

    One of the best islands to visit from Split is Hvar. Known for its picturesque landscapes, vibrant nightlife, and historic charm, Hvar offers a diverse range of attractions and activities that cater to different interests.

  6. What is the closest island to Split?

    The closest island to Split is Ciovo, which is located just off the coast and connected to Split by a bridge. It’s a convenient option for a quick island getaway from the city.

  7. What islands are worth visiting near Split?

    Near Split, Brac, Hvar, and Vis are must-visit islands. Brac offers pristine beaches, Hvar boasts a vibrant nightlife, and Vis captivates with untouched beauty. 

  8. Can you island hop from Split?

    Absolutely! You can island hop from Split. Island hopping from Split allows you to experience the diverse beauty and unique offerings of each island.

  9. How do you get from Split to Hvar island?

    To get from Split to Hvar Island, you can take a ferry from Split’s main port. The ferry ride typically takes around 1 to 2 hours. There are also catamaran options available, which may offer a faster journey. 

  10. How long is ferry from Split to Brac?

    The ferry ride from Split to Brac takes around 50 minutes to 1 hour. 

  11. How far is Brac from Split?

    Brac is located approximately 20 kilometers (12 miles) away from Split, making it a relatively close destination. The ferry ride from Split to Brac takes around 50 minutes to 1 hour.

  12. How do you get to Bisevo island from Split?

    To get to Bisevo island from Split, take a ferry or boat tour. Check ferry schedules or join a guided tour of the Blue Cave and other attractions.

  13. What is the best way to visit Split and its islands?

    Explore Split and its islands by using ferry services. Plan day trips or stay overnight for a complete experience. 

Ferry to the islands near Split

Final Thoughts on the best islands in Croatia Near Split

Island hopping is one of the best things to do in Split. From the laid-back beauty of Brac to the lively charm of Hvar and the untouched allure of Vis, each of these islands near Split have something for every traveler. 

Split island hopping is a captivating adventure. Hop on a ferry and explore nearby gems like Brac, Hvar, and Vis. Each island has its unique charm, from stunning beaches to historic towns.

So, whether you’re seeking relaxation on pristine beaches, eager to indulge in local cuisine and culture, or simply yearning to escape the everyday hustle, the islands around Split have it all. 

So, as you plan your next trip to Croatia, don’t forget to add these island gems to your bucket list and discover the best of the Adriatic while island hopping from Split. Trust me, you won’t be disappointed!

And if you are also planning a visit to Dubrovnik, I recommend you to check out this post with the best islands near Dubrovnik that you can’t miss.

Split old town

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Best Islands near Split, Croatia

Sara Rodríguez

A passionate traveler with a mission: Help you plan your next trip easily and enjoy it to the fullest.

In this travel blog you will find everything you need to get inspired and organize your next adventure. Read more about my story here.

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