Kornati National Park in Croatia

Firstly you have to know that Kornati is an archipelago of 150 islands located south of Dugi otok. Moreover it is the archipelago with the largest number of islands in the Mediterranean Sea.
Therefore today we like to share a trip to the Kornati National Park. This place in particular is one of the reasons that invites people to visit Dugi otok and Croatia in general. Truly a pure dream to be part of!

Kornati islands from Dugi otok – where to start

First we leave at 9.30 from Zaglav with Captain Ive and his sons. They are all three cheerful and helpful besides ready for a joke. The magic begins when the boat passes through the strait of Mala Proversa. It is specifically a passage that gives access to the Park. On the right side we see pass the island Dugi otok and on the left we have Katina namely a small island of the Kornati.

Above all from this moment we enter the world of fairy tale.

 

Kornati islands from Dugi otok – where to go

The 147 islands have in particulat little vegetation but many caves with cliffs and fabulous sea beds. Moreover the contrast between the blue sea and the white rock of karst terrain is amazing. Above all we feel to be on another planet.

During the morning we cruise around islands and islets with the boat. In particular we are sitting in the shade on the comfortable bench and we observe the nature in truly admiration.

Kornati islands from Dugi otok – where to swim

Meanwhile the boat proceeds slowly until it reaches a cove where the captain drops the anchor. For an hour we dive into the sea with mask and fins. The happiness is indeed pure.
A lone donkey brays on the shore. At the same time the captain gives us some carrots to bring to the animal. Finally it seems to be satisfied because it eats and is silent. We only hear the chirping of cicadas. At the bottom we observe the seabed full of fish and life. In fact it feels like being in an aquarium. The water on the skin gives us in particular the feeling of cream.

Life is beautiful!

After we get back on board. We feel fresh from our swim. The captain offers us home made grappa as an aperitif. We are on vacation and we accept with pleasure. The liquor warms the stomach and the soul.

Kornati islands from Dugi otok – where to eat

Then we are once again in navigation. We pass through a long and narrow passage called Big Proversa. The seabed is specifically very shallow and the direction signs on the coast are made of stone. The captain in truth guides skilfully the boat out of the strait.

Afterward we reach happy and hungry the bay where we lunch. The sea water is crystal clear and besides there is even a small sandy beach. The table is set and we smell grilled food.

There are in particular ten of us all sitting at the same table. We didn’t know each other but now we start chatting. Firstly we share a meal of fresh fish and tomato salad. Secondly we enjoy the taste of the olive oil. It is divine and home made. At the end of the meal we all buy one bottle.

Kornati islands from Dugi otok – what to do

After lunch the captain takes a nap and we go for a swim. The sea is so inviting that no one stays dry.

During the afternoon a Swedish gentleman in our group decides to climb to the top of the hill. He is the only one with sneakers. The vegetation is moreover barren but there are grasses and boulders on which it is impossible to walk in flip-flops.  As a result Mikeal, the Swede returns with a handful of figs of which we are very envious.

The sea temperature is cool and inviting for another swimm.

Kornati islands from Dugi otok – where to go

Later around 4 p.m. we get on board. The way back to Dugi otok is in fact different than the way out. We see reefs and islets flowing by and we wonder how the captain manages to untangle himself. We thus figure out which is the right way. It’s above all like being in a wonderful labyrinth that you don’t want to get out of.

Afterwards they ask us if we would like to stop for one last swim. On board we are truly all in a state of complete bliss and no one wants to swim anymore. In the meantime a light mistral blows and which is a sign that the weather is good and stable also for the following days.

Finally when we sail along the shores of Dugi otok we have a surprise. Cathrine, a Swiss lady from the company spots a group of dolphins. They are in the distance and are indeed swimming at high speed. We watch them of corse fascinated in their journey through the Adriatic Sea.

Kornati islands from Dugi otok – the captain

Before getting off the boat the captain tells us an anecdote.
There are bays on the Kornati islands where in shallow water there are stony tanks.

These date back to the time of the Doge of the Republic of Venice. The Doge was the head of state between 697 and 1797. The men on his ships used to keep lobsters and fish in these tanks.
Whenever ships passed through the Kornati his men would for instance stop at the Kornati to take the fresh catch and bring it to Venice.

Kornati islands from Dugi otok – advice

Firstly bring a bottle of water on board because in our opinion it is always good to have one with you. Secondly take a change of swimsuit and an anorak. On the way back we were glad to wear it.
Then we would also put mask, snorkel and sunscreem in the bag. Finally if you are very sporty and curious to explore the area bring sneakers as well.

Kornati islands from Dugi otok – information

For instance there are many crews that in high season depart from the harbours of Zaglav and Sali to the Kornati The most important when you book pay attention that the boat is small and for maximum 15 people. Futhermore check that there is a stop for lunch on an island.

Because there are many crews that take fifty people so that you will be crammed on board like in a sardine can. At the same time others offer good prices but they don’t have shore stops and serve just a sandwich on board.

In conclusion we paid 45 Euro per adult and 20 Euro per child.
The price includes the entrance to the National Park, the excursion, drinks and lunch.

Kornati islands from Dugi otok – where to stay

In particular we started from the village of Verunic located at the extreme north of Dugi otok. In the distance it takes 45 minutes by car to reach Zaglav besides the starting harbour.
Thus in our opinion it is better to stay in a holiday apartment in the north of Dugi otok since all the beaches are in that part. In fact the journey to the south is nice in particular because the road is not busy and the views are of a unique beauty.

For tips and information on the kornati excurion and where to sleep and eat in
Dugi otok visit https://www.gorgonia.hr/  mail gorgonia@zadar.net
For information about National Park Kornati:
http://www.np-kornati.hr/index.php?lang=en

Hi!

We are Miriam and Gianni, sea and good food lovers. We like spending our evenings drinking wine and chatting with our guests.

We speak several languages and this opens our doors to the world.

We love Dugi otok and to share our experiences about the island.

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