While the summer months bring lots of business to Croatia’s tourism industry, locals also lament the hoards of people and unbearable heat. I enjoyed the island of Korcula, along with a few other locales on the Dalmatian coast, during the off-season and I highly recommend it!
Instead of going to Croatia in July or August, consider going in April or May or September or October. While most restaurants and shops on the islands are closed until the tourists arrive, the weather is comfortable and the streets aren’t too crowded. Here is how you can really take advantage of the off-season in Korcula.
Stroll through Korcula’s old town
Korcula’s old town was practically empty when I took a walking tour through it one morning. I learned about the history of some of the buildings such as the beautiful St. Mark’s Cathedral and the Town Museum and passed by Marco Polo’s home, which the town is working on transforming into a museum. It was kind of nice to have the streets, alleys, and squares to myself to wander through and take photos without throngs of people in my shot.
Sip your coffee slowly at an outdoor cafe
I learned Croats are really good at relaxing and so I decided to partake in their natural pastime of a leisurely coffee break. I found a sidewalk cafe just outside the walls of the old town to sip my coffee slowly for an hour or so. Croats don’t worry about the clock and to-do lists and enjoy doing nothing but people-watching and talking with their friends. This relaxation is especially nice when the off-season quiet lets you hear the clink of coffee cups and low chatter.
Take a long lunch with a view
Located on the perimeter of the old town, I settled on one of a few restaurants that were open for lunch. LD Restaurant is on a tree-lined path with tables overlooking the water. Like a lot of restaurants on the Dalmatian coast, they offer seasonal seafood and fresh pasta.
The staff started me off with a glass of white wine and an olive oil tasting and also gave me a complimentary appetizer of sardines. For my main dish, I chose the monkfish gnocchi with black truffles which was so delicious and nothing I had tried before. The view alone would have made this a great restaurant but the food and service made it even better.
What I didn’t realize until now is that traveling during the off-season allows you to really enjoy your destination and do as the locals do rather than rushing with the massive amounts of people to do one thing after another. In slowing down, you won’t worry about missing all that’s around you.
Have you enjoyed a destination in the off-season? Share your experience in the comments below!