Opatija Croatia and why Croatians love it

None of my friends had ever hear of Opatija and I don’t think I would have had I not had to meet a boat there on my recent sailing trip to Croatia.  Why is it a secret? why doesn’t anyone know about? maybe that’s a good thing as Croatia has grown so much in popularity the tourists have nearly destroyed it.  However this region is different.  Come discover what Croatians have known for centuries.  Opatija is a well hidden secret of the rich and famous Croatia.



Opatija - Croatia1Opatija is a town in western Croatia, just southwest of Rijeka on the Adriatic coast.  It is easily reached by bus and the public transport system here is excellent and inexpensive is surprising its such a secret to tourists.  I will add that over the last 4 years prices in every area, public transport, accommodation, food, marina fees etc., have all increased.  My sadness is that I know with the new entry into the Eurozone in July 2013 prices will increase.  My heaven of serenity in Europe will surely come to an end.

opatija-croatiaYou could actually fly directly in to Rijeka but not from Dublin so the most cost effective way for me to go was to Treviso.  There are other airports close by however you cannot go direct from Dublin either.   The time of year I was travelling on this trip was September and Ryanair had stopped its Dublin Zadar route.  I have taken this flight in the past and this would have been my preferred option as I could have reached my destination via one flight and one bus.   I’ve also flown Aer Lingus directly to Dubrovnik but this was at the opposite end of the country I needed to be and it stills baffles me why Aer Lingus can charge 10 times more for the same route than Ryan Air.  The service is not much better; in a crisis they are definitely more helpful.  I spent many years working in the airline industry in many different areas and I can’t understand how Ryanair management tolerates the way their staff treat customers.  Opatija - CroatiaCustomer no service we call it, and if there was a pole judging this every year I have no doubt Ryan Air would win every time.  The reality is most people want to get from A to B as safely and cheaply as possible.   I’d give up the option of a cup of tea at 5 times the cost of buying it in Croatia if I could have some decent customer service.  I still fly them though.  I’m not one of those many people including my mother who refuse flat out to fly Ryanair.  Perhaps one day if they upset me enough.  For me honesty is enough, they are quite happy to boast that they will treat you badly but for cheaper!!!! I think Aer Lingus live in denial not realizing that their customer service is only OK and their prices are outrageous.opatija-croatia view-of-mediterranean-town

Opatija is home to many famous people in this region and the locals rattle of the names of stars when you mention you are going there.  It is beautiful and the coast is definitely what makes it and when here I can only think of boats.  Many expensive cosmetic dentists and doctors have their office here and to me it seems a bit like the Beverly Hills of Rijeka.  There are beautiful restaurants and cafes here also, the Opatija Croatia experience is magical.

This is my 14th year to go to Croatia and to me it is spectacular and a must see for anyone who likes beauty, Europe, water, history especially in places where you don’t find many foreign tourists as its still a SECRET.  If Vegas or Hollywood glamour is more your style I’m not sure if Croatia would be for your.  Dubrovnik would probably be the closest to that but still not in the same league. Opatija Croatia is actually full of old world glamour and fabulous villas overlooking the Adriatic.

I am at the beginning of a one month sailing holiday which is actually couch sailing (aka couch surfing) so my crew whom I’m meeting here in Opatija Croatia are strangers to me, ,more secrets 🙂  The boat is moored here permanently as the owner lives in Rijeka.  The adventure begins now, stay posted 🙂

Related Posts:

About Sandra

Just a girl from Ireland who wants to live everywhere. Not a planner, a winger when it comes to travel. I don't even like people who plan too much. Without spontaneity there is no depth. A jack of all trades. A great friend, loyal and passionate and I expect the same in return. Always ready for the next adventure at a moments notice.
This entry was posted in Couch surfing, Croatia, Europe and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Comments are closed.