Go Back  Fodor's Forum > Destinations > Europe
Reload this Page > Tips for a Newbee - Driving in Croatia
Notices

Tips for a Newbee - Driving in Croatia

Reply

Mar 7th, 2011, 09:26 PM
  #1
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 10
Tips for a Newbee - Driving in Croatia

Hello All

We are going to Europe Croatia actually next year 2012 in May. We are planning a driving trip starting from Dubrovnik and along the Adriatic Coast towards Split, Zadar and inland to Plitvice Lakes. We are eventually going to end up in Zagreb for a few days and then off to the eastern part of the country, to Vukovar, Dakovo, Osjek & Borovo. I was wondering if there are anyone out there who may have done a trip simular to what we are planning? What are the roads like? and If you planned your trip using google map how close are the directions and the milage given from one town to the other?
Suzzi1961 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Mar 8th, 2011, 12:07 AM
  #2
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 2,911
I've driven a little bit in Croatia. There are expressways but most of the hilly and coastal roads are slow go. For an illustrated introduction to driving in Europe see http://tinyurl.com/3bc2ax.
spaarne is offline  
Reply With Quote
Mar 8th, 2011, 03:32 AM
  #3
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 10,168
Roads are generally good. Familiarize yourself with road sign symbols before you go, and I would want a road atlas as well as Google maps. I would be especially wary of relying on Google maps for directions because they have sent me by some bizarre routes here in the US.
Ackislander is offline  
Reply With Quote
Mar 8th, 2011, 05:15 AM
  #4
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 10
Thanks Spaarne and Ackislander - they are great tips. I will look up the tinyur.com sight as soon as im finished here. Re the bizarre routes in the US via google I suspected that was the case...I will most def buy the atlas as well....Thanks once again.....
Suzzi1961 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Mar 8th, 2011, 06:10 AM
  #5
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 205
I have driven that route, but starting in Zagreb. Just a couple of thoughts: The sea cost road south from Split to Dubrovnik skirts along the edges of some very high cliffs. There are guard rails but pretty weak excuses for guard rails. If you suffer from vertigo - you might want to keep this in mind. Secondly, the locals drive like they want to die. Be warned. Passing in the face of oncoming traffic is common and considered a sport. The little wee crosses on the side of the roads indicate the losers in that game. I have seen locals "bump" your car and then make a big scene to try to shake you down for cash. My wife, who is Croatian, had to intervene in a dispute that happened in front of our lunch table to save an elderly couple from Scotland from being swindled. Get a good map.
TorontoSteven is offline  
Reply With Quote
Mar 8th, 2011, 08:35 AM
  #6
kja
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 17,146
The directions I got from viamichelin all seemed correct (or at least, they all got me where I wanted to go). I think the estimates of time were more or less on target, but I always plan on extra time to be on the safe side. I preferred to drive more slowly than most other drivers (which is to say, I didn't want to exceed the speed limit by very much), so I stopped frequently to let others pass. I was stunned by how many people took blind curves in the wrong lane at high speeds! Directions are generally marked by city names rather than the letters/numbers that identify roads, so be prepared for that. Enjoy!
kja is offline  
Reply With Quote
Mar 8th, 2011, 02:28 PM
  #7
Original Poster
 
Join Date: Mar 2011
Posts: 10
Hello Steven and Kja thank you very much for your replies. I will certainly take your comment on board especially when we start planning the route. I must say it sounds little scary, especially the cliffs part and the local maniac drivers. I am beginning to wonder if it was a bad idea. Tell me something guys. Would you drive in Croatia again?
Suzzi1961 is offline  
Reply With Quote
Mar 8th, 2011, 03:18 PM
  #8
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 3,438
We have driven from Dubrovnik to Trogir, ferried to Hvar with the car, drove to Plitvice to Rovinje and dropped the car in Zagreb.....all without a problem.

I do not deal with heights well (an understatement if you ask my husband) and driving north from Dubrovnik, you are on the "inside" so not on the edge of a big cliff. We never saw a manic driver but our trip was fairly early May so not the crowds that might be a problem farther into the summer.
Judy is online now  
Reply With Quote
Mar 8th, 2011, 03:25 PM
  #9
kja
 
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 17,146
> Would you drive in Croatia again?

Yes - but I only drove a very small section of the coast. For the most part, I used buses and ferries to visit that part of the country. As a solo traveler, I find it difficult to drive and navigate at the same time, so when public transportation options suit my needs, I prefer to use it.
kja is offline  
Reply With Quote
Mar 8th, 2011, 03:28 PM
  #10
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 2,518
I have driven from Rijeka to the Albanian border and have seen the cliffs and the driving mentioned above. I'd do it again in a second.

You need to be aware and drive defensively. Be ready to pull as far to the right as possible so 3
cars can share the road if necessary. When rounding a corner or cresting a hill keep as far to the right as you can in case someone is passing. And pay attention!

As for cliffs... sure. But you'll find in Europe roads often are not so protected with guard rails as they are in North America. That's normal.

So don't be put off... just be aware and you'll have a great time.
ParisAmsterdam is offline  
Reply With Quote
Mar 8th, 2011, 04:30 PM
  #11
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 7,975
We loved Croatia. Drove from Dubrovnik to Trogir to Plitvice and through Zagreb to Ljubljana, Slovenia. Easy driving. Below is my report (with photos). Chapters Six, Seven and Eight recount the places where you will be traveling. Have a blast.

http://www.travelswithmaitaitom.com/...nice_2008.html

maitaitom is online now  
Reply With Quote
Mar 8th, 2011, 07:56 PM
  #12
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 2,911
I would drive in Croatia again. I don't recall any maniac drivers, at least nothing much different than the ordinary Italian tailgater. But what bothered me the most was getting stuck behind 18 wheelers hauling loads of logs on the two lane mountain road between Zagreb and Rijeka. The exhaust pipe of European diesel trucks is at wheel level, not 15 feet in the air as in the USA. The fumes were nauseating as I tried to find a few hundred yards of straight road to pass the trucks.

One smell, and taste, that was a treat was the lambs roasting on charcoal at the many little restaurants along the road. We stopped and ate, and then had to pass those same darn trucks again.
spaarne is offline  
Reply With Quote
Jun 17th, 2012, 01:03 PM
  #13
 
Join Date: Jun 2012
Posts: 1
Hello
Just a follow up on whether you made the trip to Croatia, or you chickened out (pun intended on road warriors). If so, how did you go .... literally ....
scrubberfish is offline  
Reply With Quote
 



Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -8. The time now is 04:05 PM.