We were lucky enough to spend a fabulous week sailing around Croatia recently. When we set off on this nautical adventure we imagined that every day we would be eating seafood galore. Fish, shrimp, octopus, you name it we thought it was going to be on our plate. The reality was pretty different. Croats, you see love their meat, veg and potato, which was a bit of a surprise. I’m talking steak (lots of steak) pork, chicken… really almost an Eastern European diet, not what you imagine by the sea. We did manage to find some great restaurants though.
We had a lovely meal at Paradies Garden in Hvar, delicious fresh fish and the mixed grill here was spot on. Not a soggy vegetable in sight! If you can get a table on top of the terrace, then jump at it – as you get some great views of the rooftops. Giaxa is another of our favourites in Hvar, with a price tag to match. Along with DiVino with its stunning views.
Nautika Restautant is at the very top of our list of recommendations for Dubrovnik. It is almost criminal not to ask for a terrace table when you book as they offer incredible views of the Western harbour entrance to the city (bring your camera and your credit card). Proto is always at the top of everyone’s fish restaurants when the visit Dubrovnik, inside the city walls you can soak up the atmosphere while the sun sets. If you fancy a change then there is always Bota Sare Oyster & Sushi Bar which does what it says on the tin. They also have sister restaurants in Split (very good) and Zagreb (caters to European fare when the sushi chefs are moved to Split & Dubrovnik in the summer months).
Our perfect evening in Split consisted of dinner (any of the below), drinks at Bodega wine bar in the city walls then wander round to the Diocletian Palace, sit on the steps with an ice-cream or even a slice of the very good pizza which can be picked up for about fifty pence/a dollar and enjoy the entertainment.
Bokeria in the Old town is inspired and named after the Barcelona market of the same name. You can go for dinner or just the wine bar but be sure to book as this place gets very busy.Konoba Matejuska is located in a gorgeous traditional stone house to the West of the Old Town that also offers rooms to rent. Traditional really is the best way to describe Konoba Matejuska but it is hugely popular so you definitely need to book if you are planning a visit. Take a cab out of town to restaurant Dvor and sample typical Croatian food that will make you want to go back for more.