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Given the geography of the region, it's thoroughly predictable that the stars of Kvarner are the beaches that line the Adriatic. For the most part they are covered with stone, which may not be so forgiving on the body when lying upon them, nor on the feet when traversing, but you can thank the mineral shores for the stunning aquamarine purity of the water. Diving below the gentle waves is a great attraction, as is hoisting sail to allow the wind to propel you across them.
The wonderful climate, plentiful sunshine, and fresh sea breezes should give thanks to the mountains that plunge toward the waters around the whole Kvarner bay. Nature lovers will enjoy hiking here, dropping into remote villages to refuel and sample a pace of life rarely found in 21st-century Europe.
Kvarner offers the visitor perhaps the greatest variety of cultural and architectural styles in Croatia. The mainland, thanks to its popularity with former rulers, features resort towns built on the grand scale of the Austrian Empire, particularly on the Opatija Riviera. Although many are somewhat faded in spots—and must compete with the "modifications" of Communist-era planners—their original intention to serve the upper echelons of late-19th-century society from Central Europe still manages to impress.
The Quiet Islands
The islands, meanwhile, are bastions of Mediterranean culture, and Italian in particular. Aside from certain tourist-heavy locations (e.g., parts of Krk), one can still lap up the joys of rustic southern Europe, including stone cottages and peaceful village harbors, in relative authenticity.
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