With a myriad of restaurants, hotels and wineries, Croatia’s two coastal regions, Istria and Dalmatia, are a wine and food lover’s paradise. While it’s gorgeous virtually year-round, the best times to visit are in the spring and early fall, as the picturesque coastal roads are choked with tourist traffic in the summer. And for those who wish to visit one of the many wineries, it’s important to call ahead as most winery tours are available by appointment only.
Palace Hotel Zagreb: The charming, 100-year-old Art Nouveau palais is located at the historical park, Zrinjevac. There, you’ll find yourself just a short stroll away from the museums, galleries and restaurants of the medieval city.
Bistro Apetit: At this glamorous eatery, Austrian Chef and Owner Christian Cabalier offers an international wine list, including some of Croatia’s finest, such as Saints Hills, Krauthaker and Enjingi.
Viking Restaurant: Yellow stucco and terra cotta adorn the exterior of this waterfront dining spot, famed for its local seafood, homemade pastas and fresh truffles. Lim Fjord, Rovinj, Istria; 385 52 448 223
Hotel San Rocco: This family farm was converted into a boutique hotel that boasts a world-class restaurant, a deluxe spa and an outdoor pool encircled by olive trees and manicured gardens.
Matosevic Winery: Ivica Matosevic is one of Istria’s finest winemakers, and he will gladly taste you through his Malvasia Istriana—the Alba and Aura—and both his red and white Grimalda blends, alongside local cheese and olives, for 10 euro. Kruncici 2, Lovrec, Istria,
Kozlović VIP Vina: This picturesque winery uses sustainable practices to craft Malvasia, Teran and other international varietal based wines.
Bibich Winery: Using indigenous grapes, such as Babich and Debit, as well as red Rhône varieties, such as Syrah and Grenache, Winemaker Alen Bibić crafts Mediterranean blends with a modern hand. All of these wines plus his line of olive oils can be tasted in his bucolic tasting room just uphill from Skradin. Poljoprivredno-Trgovacki Obrt, Plastovo, Phone: +385 91 211 1231
Nostromo Restaurant: Named one of Croatia’s best chefs, Chef and Owner Zlatan Marinović indulges his diners with dishes composed of fresh seafood caught just a stone’s throw away from the Adriatic. Kraj Sv. Marije 10, Split
Lesic Dimitri Palace: Located next door to the historic, former residence of Marco Polo, this restored 18th-century bishop’s palace offers its guests a five-star experience, including spectacular vistas of the Dalmatian archipelago. Don Pavia Pose 1-6, Korčula Island
Korta Katarina Winery: Located in the small coastal town of Orebic, this winery hosts a tasting room complete with stunning views of the Adriatic and a selection of flavorful wines crafted from native Plavac Mali and Posip grapes. Bana J. Jelacica 3, Orebic
Grgić Vina Winery: Napa Valley legend Mike Grgich returns to his Croatian roots with a small, unassuming winery built in the quaint seaside village Trestenik. Trstenik 78, Trstenik, phone: +385 20 741 153
Restaurant Nautika: In the converted Dubrovnik School of Maritime Studies, Chef Mario Bunda awes his diners with masterly seafood creations, inspired by the local Adriatic waters. Brsalje 3, Dubrovnik
Taverna Galija: While dining on Galija’s rooftop terrace, enjoy dishes like sea urchin soup and stuffed squid as you absorb the picturesque views of the charming town and the Cavtat Bay. Vuliceviceva 1, Cavtat
For a more in-depth look into the food and wine towns of Croatia, click here.