Sail Croatia is pretty infamous for site seeing, partying and exploring a few of the best parts of Croatia. Sam and I chose to do it through Busabout after talking to some people at a travel convention and it seemed like a pretty good deal – plus we got 15% off for booking it on the spot. I know a lot of people are curious about what the Busabout sail Croatia experience is like so I’m going to run through some of my highs and lows of the trip as my Busabout Sail Croatia review, plus things to consider when booking it. Before I go into my Busabout Sail Croatia review though I want to give you a better idea of what the trip is because I had absolutely no idea what was in store for us before we got there.
The trip we booked was the “Croatia Island Hopper” which included a 8 day trip that started in Split, all the way to Dubrovnik and back. We stayed one short night on each island, so the trip looked like this: Split – Hvar – Mljet – Dubrovnik – Korcula – Markaska – Omis – Split. Everyday our group of 18 (19-26 years old) would be sailing by 6am to the next stop, eating breakfast by 8 and usually a swim stop around 10. Lunch usually was around 12-1 depending on the day. As soon as we docked at a spot we would first have a walk around the town with our tour guide sharing a bit of the history before being free to wander as you pleased. Dinner would always be booked by your tour guide for around 7-8 o’clock and although we always went, I’m pretty sure it’s optional if you want to go elsewhere. After dinner we would always be having a couple of drinks on the boat, before heading to a bar and followed by a club. People came in both pairs or solo and had just as much fun.
Something I think should be made more clear, and while it wasn’t much of an issue for me, others on the boat really struggled with – everything apart from breakfast and lunch has to be paid for by you. When I say everything I mean drinks on the boat/anywhere off, dinner, any attraction you see comes at a price and even toilets in Croatia (unless you use the ones at cafes etc.). Croatia in general is a pretty cheap place so you definitely don’t need to over spend and there are tricks to saving money along the way but if you’re already thinking the base price is expensive you’ll have to consider whether it’s worth it to see it this way – you can definitely do it cheaper solo.
We started sailing on the 18th of June and had been told July/August was the best time previously but I’d definitely recommend June for this trip because even as a write this now a week later I couldn’t imagine doing it now in this ridiculous heat, let alone mid summer in 40 degree weather. Plus Jordi our tour guide recommends June or September.
The last thing I’ll mention before my highs and lows is that the trip is a VERY quick way of seeing Croatia and while we saw a lot, I felt like we were always moving on to the next activity 5 minutes later. And if you aren’t on the boat by 5am they’ll leave without you (which happened to me on the first night.. oops). Plus, if you don’t gel well with your boat, the other Busabout boats dock beside you so go and say hi. Now, for the highs and lows of Busabout Sail Croatia..
- I think we hit the jackpot when it came to tour guide and crew. Jordi our tour guide, while being the ‘guide of the guides’ was extremely knowledgable, but relaxed and showed us how to party on the islands. Our boat was family owned, was super relaxed and made the best food and cocktails.
- Not really to do with the trip, but when I missed the boat the locals were super kind and even paid for my ferry to catch up to the boat since I had nothing but the clothes on my back. Plus, I think things always happen for a reason and getting to hang out with Ante (the bartender) for the morning wasn’t a bad way to pass time and learn more about the Croatian way of life.
- Skinny dipping in Dubrovnik. My Busabout Sail Croatia experience was what we made of it, and we made it fun (and pretty ridiculous).
- Speaking of Dubrovnik, that place had the BEST club – it was massive and was so unexpected.
- The roast dinner on the boat was seriously the best meal I’ve had in fucking forever.
- Makarska was my favourite island. With the cave party and general feel of life there Sam and I decided it would be the place to live. That or Hvar.
- Parasailing in Makarska, it was worth it for the awesome view. Heaps of people in our group did it and they all said the same thing.
- Playing “Never have I ever” with our group… It quickly got everyone talking, haha.
- Swimming everyday was a god send. Coming from winter I was pretty much dying from the heat and usually a hangover, so this was a highlight everyday.
- Split is actually a really cool place. When we first caught the boat it was boiling and we had no idea the place was so big, refusing to move for 3 hours because of our packs while we waited. On the last day we got shown around the old town and we’ve stayed there for three nights since.
- As everyone probably knows that knows me, I like to go out quite a lot but I have to say I’ve had some of the best night out in a loooong time in Croatia – between the people, the drinks and the atmosphere, it’s a bloody good time.
- As I said, constantly feeling rushed. While I loved seeing everything quickly and by boat organised for us, it did take it out of you and I crashed straight after it.
- We were staying in the lower deck and pretty much fried at night. Trust me, spend the extra and stay above deck.
- It’s hard to keep your phone charged because of the way that power works on it, not being on the boat very often and generally forgetting. It basically it meant I have barely any photos, couldn’t contact home much or blog.
- Climbing up to the pirate fortress in Omis while being hungover. Worth it to say I’ve done it, but sooo didn’t feel like it at the time. Take it easy the night before if you plan on getting there!
- It being over 🙁
Now my super quick tips are as follows:
Buy mini (and super cheap) vodka or whatever your poison is and keep it in your bag when you go out, it will save you so much on drinks. Cheeky, but make friends with your guide and free drinks will follow. You will need a million plasters, trust me and take them. Also, sunscreen is expensive there so take it with you.
Hope this Busabout Sail Croatia experience and review was helpful. I ultimately had a lot of fun and would recommend it if you’re looking for a good introduction into travelling as we were. Like anything, the trip is what you make of it so keep that in mind and let me know if you end up going!