Croatia’s weather can be divided in two predominant climates: Continental on inland, with a freezing winter and warm summer, and Mediterranean on the coast, meaning a very hot summer and mild winter. Snow is a rare occurrence anywhere on the coast, but very common on the northern mountains and inland Croatia.
The best time to visit Croatia’s coast and its islands is between mid-May to mid-October — that’s when the water temperature is good for swimming. As most places in Europe, July and August are the busiest months and prices are much higher because of european traditional holiday schedules. Peak season means expensive accommodation that fills up early, full restaurants and crowded beaches, but it is also when the sea is the bluest and temperatures are the hottest. If you’re looking for party, July and August are also when the coolest parties take place.
The best months for a more relaxing visit to the Adriatic coast are June and September – warm temperatures not as roasting as peak summer, cheaper accommodation and less crowds. From October to May the coast can be very quite and it’s important to note that island ferries operate on reduced schedules and lots of establishments shut off for the winter.
The coast during the off-season can be very enjoyable for urban sightseeing in historic centers like Zadar, Split and Dubrovnik — and accommodation prices may drop by half.
Quite the opposite, the interior of Croatia experiences minimal crowds and the lowest prices during summer when even residents go to the coast, leaving the cities less busy than normal. Fall and Spring are great seasons to visit national park areas like the Plitvice Lakes and the River Krka and temperatures are ideal for pleasant hikes, bike rides and dawn-to-dusk sightseeing in cities like Zagreb. Winters are freezing and snow is common, with transportation being disrupted often on the highlands.
The bottom line is: no matter in what season, Croatia is gorgeous and worth a visit! But if you want to relax at the beach, plan your visit from June to September.