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Croatia is seriously hot on the travel radar these days, and with excellent reason indeed. Aside from popular Dubrovnik, the Adriatic coastline is teeming with fantastic beaches to enjoy, no matter who you’re traveling with, when you’re going, and what you’re going for.
Now, do you prefer sand or pebbles?
This might sound like the oddest of questions, but when it comes to getting your beach day right, it’s important to get the foundation right too!
If you’re traveling with kids in Croatia, then there’s no denying that building a sandcastle or two is the ideal pastime, and for that, you need sand. Pebbles simply don’t do the job!
If you’re looking for the fun sand beaches in Croatia, perfect for a family day out, check out our selection of the best sandy beaches in Croatia below. There’s sure to be a beach to suit your needs, and put simply, all of them are blindingly beautiful, too.
Lopar Beach, Island Of Rab
Situated on the beautiful island of Rab, just off the north coast of the mainland, you will find Lopar Beach. This is a popular sand beach in Croatia, especially during the peak summer months in July and August, when you will find crowds in abundance. This shouldn’t put you off, as provided you get there early enough, you will find your spot on the fine, white sand.
How do you get there? You need to get the ferry, obviously, and the easiest way to do that is to head to Jablanac and take the ferry over to Misnjak. This route takes around 15 minutes, but you can also get ferry connections from Jablanac, Rijeka, or Baska.
Why is this so great for kids? The beach is wide and set in an arc-shape, which means it is sheltered from winds and sea currents. The water is calm and shallow, ideal for splashing on the shore, and there aren’t a major amount of water-sports going on, so it’s much safer for the little ones.
Bačvice Beach, Split
Found right in Split’s city center is one of the most well-known beaches in Croatia, Bačvice Beach. There is something for everyone at this amazing beach. Bačvice is known for relaxing swimming conditions and plenty of watersports to keep you busy all day long.
Kids of all ages enjoy spending the day along the shores of Bačvice Beach. There are pavilions along the beach for changing and dressing. At night, the beach comes alive when all of the bars and clubs are lining the beach open their doors. The local sport of picigin originated at Bačvice Beach.
Grebišće Beach, Hvar Island
Hvar’s best sandy beach for families is Grebisce, which is located on the north side of the Jelsa Harbour. It’s nothing flashy, but the kids who want to make sandcastles will love it. Just remember to pack the baby powder for when you’re ready to head home.
Sakarun Beach, Dugi Otok
If you’re looking for a sandy beaches in Croatia that look like paradise, then your search is over! Clear, calm water, without major crowds, all adds up to a perfect family choice. The smaller beaches and bays around Sakarun are fun to explore with the family. Put simply, this is one of the most famous beaches on Dugi Otok, and in the Zadar Region.
Sakarun Beach is situated on the northwest coast of Dugi Otok, and it’s easy to get there from Bozava via a shuttle, which runs every couple of hours there and back again. Cafes also surround the beach, so you won’t struggle to find a cold drink to keep everyone hydrated in the hot summer heat.
Aside from looking like something from an advert, Sakarun never gets overly crowded, and the sand is comfortable to walk on. The sea is clean and calm, and the surrounding pine trees mean there is always shade when the kids get a bit too hot and bothered. On top of this, the water isn’t deep, only 3.5m at its highest point near the shore, so kids can easily splash around (with supervision, of course).
Saplunara Beach, Mljet
This is undoubtedly a hidden gem! Many of the beaches in Croatia with sand are slowly succumbing to mass tourism, slowly turning into Croatia sandy beach resorts. However, this one has managed to hold onto being totally untouched. The calm, serene vibe means everyone will be chilled out at the end of the day, and because the area is protected, i.e., you can’t camp or litter, you know you’re in for a slice of child-friendly paradise.
There are no large hotels around Saplunara Beach, so this will be a day out which you can paint up to the kids as an adventure. You will need to take the ferry to Sobra, and then drive, get the bus or a taxi. The road is beautiful. However, a little unsafe in places – so take only bigger kids and embrace the craziness!
Sabunike Beach, Privlaka
Situated just west of Nin, Privlaka is home to several different beaches. However, arguably its most famous beach is Sabunike Beach, which has a combination of sand and pebbles. This popular beach is many kilometers long and features lots of facilities, from umbrellas and showers to beachside bars and restaurants. Like most other beaches in the area, it has shallow and warm water ideal for kids and dogs.
Sandy Beaches of Vrgada Island
A small but beautiful island about halfway between Zadar and Šibenik, Vrgada Island has only one settlement, also called Vrgada, and is home to several gorgeous sandy beaches. In fact, the island is famous for its sand beaches, attracting people who want to escape the bustling beaches of mainland Dalmatia. Many Vrgada Island beaches are in shady coves, surrounded by Mediterranean vegetation and pine trees.
Velika Plaza, Omiš
Omiš is a large town, and it has several sandy beaches to choose from, yet Velika Plaza is the main beach in town, making it the easiest to get to and the largest.
Backed by cafes and restaurants, you can easily feed and water the kids without major hassle, and the warm, shallow waters mean it is safe for kids to splash around, making sandcastles at the shoreline. This sand beach in Croatia is also effortless to reach from the town center, literally a few steps away, and there are activities to keep everyone occupied, including football and beach volleyball.
Vela Przina Beach, Korčula
Now, the only problem with popular beaches is that they tend to get a little crowded during the peak months. The answer? Simple really, just get there early enough and really make a day of it.
Vela Przina Beach is located on the southern coastline of the island, set in a secluded bay, making the waters calm and shallow, ideal for kids. Again, there are plenty of cafes and restaurants around, helping you answer those ‘I’m hungry’ moans, and there are plenty of parasols on offer, too, to give you shade in the sometimes very intense summer heat.
How to get there? From Korčula town, you simply jump on the bus, and within 15 minutes, you are on this beautiful sandy beach for the day.
Ičina Beach, Vrsi
6km northeast of Nin is the little resort town of Vrsi. The town is comprised of quarters, including one called Zukve. Zukve has two beaches – one pebble and one sandy. The sandy beach is known as Ičina Beach, and it offers easy access to the sea. Along with an amusement park, food and coffee bars are available in Zukve, making it a great stop for families.
Borik Beach, Zadar
Only about five kilometers from the Old Town of Zadar, Borik Beach is one of the city’s busiest beaches. Popular among locals and tourists alike, it is very developed and has many amenities. Made up of pebbles and sand, the beach offers access to beautifully clean water, while some restaurants, bars, and kids’ playgrounds cater to all ages.
Bay Lovrečina, Island Of Brač
Tucked along the island of Brač’s northern shores, you will find a little cove known as Bay Lovrečina. Here, waters are shallow, azure, and clear, the sun is plentiful, and nearby pines provide shade.
We suggest you try your hand at Picigin – it’s an ideal location for this traditional Croatian water game!
Visitors can reach the beach by foot, car, or boat, and a local restaurant offers refreshing drinks or a bite to eat for beach-goers.
Also, important to note, not only does this beach have sandy shores, but nearby Roman archaeological sites also make it a great spot for cultural exploration.
Queens Beach, Nin
There are many sandy beaches around the Zadar-Nin area, but this one is probably the best. The waters around this beach change regularly, depending on the wind and weather, making for a fantastic sandcastle building! There is also plenty of room for running free in total safety, which is always a must when you’re having a family beach day.
You can reach the beach within a few minutes from the center of Nin. However, you will need to park up in the nearby forest and walk the few steps to it. Bear in mind that you have to pay for parking during peak season.
As a side note, the kids will love the mud pools that are created around the shallow parts of the shoreline. All in all, this is arguably the best sandy beach in Croatia for families with small children.
Prapratno Beach, Peljesac Peninsula
This stunning, sandy beach is tucked into a little bay just 3km west of Ston. Known for clear, warm, shallow waters, this beach has become a favorite along the Peljesac Peninsula. With a nearby cafe for afternoon snacks & drinks, close proximity to the bus and ferry terminals, and campground accessibility, it’s a convenient, relaxing stop for anyone traveling through the Peljesac Peninsula. The natural surroundings of pine and olive trees make for a picturesque day at the beach, perfect for the whole family.
Iza Banja Beach, Sv. Filip And Jakov
Found right in the center of Sv. Filip and Jakov is Iza Banja beach, which is a combination of sandy and pebble shores. The beach has been awarded the prestigious Blue Flag status, offering guests crystal clear waters and wonderfully clean facilities. Pine trees offer shade from the sun’s rays, and the waters are shallow with a gentle slope, making it great for young swimmers.
If you need a break from the water, volleyball, pedal boat rentals, and playground equipment are available. Also, important to note, this beach is staffed with lifeguards!
Slanica Beach, Murter
The largest and most popular beach in Murter, on the west side of Murter Island, Slanica Beach is a combination of sand, pebbles, and rocks. It’s one of the most beautiful beaches in this part of Croatia, featuring several facilities and amenities that will make your visit extremely comfortable.
There are beach showers, and there’s natural shade, beach bars, and restaurants, bathrooms, umbrellas, and beach and water sports opportunities, including jet-skiing, beach volleyball,l, and tennis.
Paradise Beach, Rab
There may not be a lot of sandy beaches in Croatia, especially when considering the sheer number of Croatian beaches overall, but Rab Island’s Paradise Beach is one of the absolute best. This is the most famous and largest beach in Lopar, locally known as Rajska Beach.
About 1.5 kilometers long, it boasts Blue Flag status, which indicates the quality and cleanliness of the water, as well as the preservation of the natural environment as a whole. You’ll also find numerous amenities at Paradise Beach, including beach volleyball and other sports facilities, a kids playground, beach chairs and umbrellas, showers and bathrooms, waterfront bars, and restaurants.
Ljubač Beach, Ljubač
Located about 25 kilometers north of Zadar, Ljubač is a small coastal village on a scenic bay. It’s a popular tourist destination, home to apartments, bars, and restaurants, all of which are close to the town’s large sandy beach. This gently sloping beach is just south of the harbor and has some facilities, including a beach volleyball court and umbrellas. Thanks to its super-shallow water, it’s one of Croatia’s best sandy beaches to visit with small children.
Children’s Beach, Sukošan
Although the start of this beach is mainly pebble and pavement, there is soft sand underneath the wonderful, shallow water. Called Dječji raj in Croatian, the name of this beach really tells you all you need to know. It is perfect for families with young kids.
Visitors can rent beach chairs and pedal boats, get refreshments like ice cream and cold drinks and swim in safe and shallow water. Additionally, there are toilets, showers, and changing rooms too.
As you can see, in terms of sandy beaches Croatia definitely has its share. A beach is a personal choice, however, so head out there and explore and report back to us! If we missed your favorite sandy beach in Croatia, comment below so we can add it.
Other Tips For Traveling With Kids In Croatia
More family travel advice can be found here to help you and your family get the most out of traveling Europe with kids. But for Croatia, here are our top tips: