Cres Island Travel Guide
Island of Cres, together with Krk, is the largest Croatian island, situated in the Kvarner gulf. Cres holidays will be unforgettable due to spectacular nature, historical heritage, delicious cuisine and great cultural offer of this destination.
The easiest way to reach island of Cres is by ferry from Krk Island (Valbiska) or from the Istrian peninsula (Brestova).
Cres Island has been settled since the Neolithic times which is attested by cave habitation Jami na Sredi. The island was ruled by the Roman Empire, and after its downfall was under the Byzantine Empire. In the 7th c. it was invaded by the Croats, but in the 11th century Cres was taken over by the Venetians. After that island of Cres went through constant changing of rulers (Croats, Hungarians, Venetians, Austrians, the French, Italians) until 1947, when Cres was finally assigned to Croatia.
Tourist attractions. The town of Cres is graced with such attractions as a Franciscan monastery (14th c.), the palace-museum of the family Patris (15th c.), the church of St. Isidor (12th c.), the Church of Our Lady of Snow (16th c.), town gates which date to 16th c. (the gate of St. Mikulo, Bragadina and Marcela), numerous Renaissance palaces. During your holidays on Cres Island visit Osor with its Town Museum, remains of antique villa, the ruins of ancient town walls, the Bishop’s Palace, the Early Christian basilica and a stunning Cathedral with a bell tower. Martinscica is also worth visiting due to its amazing architecture (the medieval church of St. Martin, the Franciscan Monastery, etc.). Those who have chosen Cres travel for the sake of historical attractions should also see the Valun Tablet (11th c.), written in Glagolitza.
Beaches. Cres travel is also so popular due to some of the best beaches and lagoonas in entire country. Those who are travelling with small kids are recommended two beaches of Valun under the shade of pine trees, Raca and Zdovica. If you are looking for secluded beaches, go to Marascica beach in Stivan village, beach Ustrine, and the bay of Koromacna near Belej. Adrenaline junkies should definitely visit Mali Bok beach near Orlec, which gets deep very quickly and looks rather scary.
Restaurants. There is much to be uncovered beyond local cuisine during your holidays on island of Cres. If you want to have dinner in Osor, you can choose between such restaurants like Bijar, Osor, Nonina Kuhinja, pizzeria Orfej. If you happen to be in Martiniscica during your Cres travel, visit the restaurant Zlatni Lav, which offers a wide choice of local specialties, pizza from a stone oven, pasta dishes. The places of town Cres such as pizzeria Luna Rosa, restaurants Kimen, Feral, Kovacine, Gostionica Riva will satisfy even picky travelers.
Festivals and cultural events. The Musical Evenings of Osor (15th July - 15th August), which had been organized since 1976, undoubtedly presents the most significant traditional cultural event in this region of Croatia. Cres Summer Festival (3rd - 5th August) is also worth your attention. It includes food fair, music concerts, sport competitions, various entertainment programs. The 25th of September is the Day of inclusion of Cres Island into Croatia. The day of Virgin Mary of Snow is celebrated on the 5th of August.
Active vacations. Cres holidays will be enjoyed by sports-minded travelers as well. Almost all sports on land and sea are included in the sport offer of the island of Cres. Those who would like to explore the astonishing underwater world should go to diving centres which can be found in Cres, Martinscica and Beli. One can also attend sailing courses, try submarine fishing, mountaineering, trekking, biking and even parachutting.