The Croatian Island of Cres

As we sit on the balcony of our apartment on Krk Island, our view takes us to the island of Cres.The temptation to visit proved too much one day so we headed off to investigate! The ferry ride from Valbiska to Merag was quick. Thirty minutes later, after driving past rocky fields of olive trees, we arrived in the town of Cres. 

Pink bougainvillea and cascading grape vines decorated the first houses we saw. The old stone Franciscan Monastery was well tendered and the streets are spotless.

Houses in the village of Cres


The Franciscan Monastery in Cres

The Franciscan Monastery


The minute you walk into a town, you know if you are going to like it or not and Cres was one town I knew straight away that I would enjoy.

cres across the water

As we rounded the corner, the harbour opened up before us. Small fishing boats lined the walkway. The port is the centre of many a town and Cres was no exception. What did surprise me the coloured houses surrounding the water. I was immediately taken back to the Venetian island of Burano.

This probably shouldn’t have surprised me for the early history of these towns along the Croatian coast includes a time when it came under Venetian rule.

The coloured houses of Cres

The coloured houses of Cres


The coloured houses and fishing boat harbour of Cres

The coloured houses and fishing boat harbour of Cres


The town of Cres on Cres Island


Cres Town, Croatia


The main square of Cres

The main square of Cres


It didn’t take long to walk around the town so we took a seat on the waterfront and watched everyone go about their daily chores. The Italian influence is still strong. The menu was written in both Croatian and Italian.

Fresh fish had to be bought…..

fish shop cres Collage.jpg


It was market day and a small group of ladies had set up stalls near the 16th century loggia. Local olive oil and a small selection of fresh produce were for sale.

olive oil stand


Cres and the adjoining island of Losinj are separated by a small bridge over the narrow channel so this was our next stop…Mali Losinj and Veli Losinj were waiting for us!

The view looking back over Cres

The view looking back over Cres


Have you ever visited a town that reminded you of another?



Other posts you may enjoy:
Seven weeks in Croatia: The Highlights
Zagreb’s Most Unusual Tourist Attraction
A-Ston-ishing Oysters in Croatia
Mostar’s Old Bridge


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41 Responses to The Croatian Island of Cres

  1. Johanna April 3, 2014 at 3:07 pm #

    Wow, Jenny you are busy blogging! I loved this post about Cres, and you’ve made it look and sound so appealing that I’m putting it on the list for sure … not long now 😉

    • Jenny Freedman April 3, 2014 at 9:09 pm #

      No not long until you go Jo. Cres may have to wait for another year! You are going to love Croatia….have a great trip!

  2. Ann April 3, 2014 at 3:48 pm #

    Glad to see you’re getting Croatia out of the way early! 🙂

    I often find some cities remind me of other places, but I can’t think of anything specifically at the moment. Once I go to Croatia, though, I bet everything will remind me of your instagram photos from last year.

    • Jenny Freedman April 3, 2014 at 9:06 pm #

      Love it Ann! Yes, I want you to remember me when you go to Croatia! Can’t wait for your photos. Remind me again when you’re going! We may even be there.

  3. Contented Traveller April 3, 2014 at 5:34 pm #

    Looks so beautiful. I LOVE colourful villages. Looking fwd to D.

    • Jenny Freedman April 3, 2014 at 9:04 pm #

      It really was a pretty spot. Yes, I suppose I had better start on the post for D!

  4. Corinne April 3, 2014 at 6:06 pm #

    I would love to go here…love the fishing boats, love the crisp blue day! Perfect for a C!

    • Jenny Freedman April 3, 2014 at 9:03 pm #

      There’s a bit of everything on Cres Corinne. A great place to visit!

  5. Jessica | A Passion and A Passport April 3, 2014 at 9:25 pm #

    Wow, Cres looks absolutely gorgeous! Those colors on the houses and that view- wow! Would love to go there someday! Beautiful post!

    • Jenny Freedman April 4, 2014 at 8:05 am #

      Thanks Jess.We were lucky that it was so close to where we were staying that we could pop over for a day trip and visit Cres and the nearby island of Losinj. I got such a surprise when I first saw the coloured houses…it was not what I was expecting!

  6. Ashley @ A Southern Gypsy April 3, 2014 at 10:13 pm #

    Wonderful photos! Cres looks amazing – I’ve only been to Dubrovnik but really want to go back to Croatia 🙂

    • Jenny Freedman April 5, 2014 at 6:56 am #

      Thanks Ashley. Dubrovnik’s great. The crowds are a bit harrowing so it was great to escape to places like Cres…another world!

  7. N J Magas April 3, 2014 at 11:27 pm #

    Wow, it’s just gorgeous! So clean and sunny and bright looking. Thanks for sharing! 😀

    • Jenny Freedman April 5, 2014 at 6:57 am #

      It was a lovely little town NJ. Thanks for visiting.

  8. SJ @ Chasing the Donkey April 3, 2014 at 11:29 pm #

    Thanks for highlight Cred – I did not know much about it. I’ll have to be sure to find the time to explore it this year xx

    • Jenny Freedman April 4, 2014 at 7:49 am #

      It’s not far from you SJ so maybe a day visit…leave time to explore Losinj as well..there’s some cute spots there too!

  9. Donna Amis Davis April 3, 2014 at 11:46 pm #

    Oh how absolutely charming. I did think right away of photos I’ve seen of Italian villages – the muted tones of the buildings. What a fun place, off the tourist path.

    • Jenny Freedman April 4, 2014 at 8:00 am #

      Thanks Donna. I’m glad i wasn’t alone thinking of Italy! I kept forgetting how close this part of Croatia is the Italian border! Cres may get a few visits from boats cruising the islands in this region but otherwise I don’t think a lot of tourists visit here.

  10. Birgit April 3, 2014 at 11:50 pm #

    This is a beautiful town-Love the history and colours. You are right-it does remind me of Burano as well. I know I have been to towns where it reminded me of another but at this moment I can’t thi nk of one:)

    • Jenny Freedman April 4, 2014 at 8:02 am #

      The towns in southern Croatia are quite different so this was indeed a pleasant surprise. I’m pleased you could see Burano there as well!

  11. Calli April 4, 2014 at 1:51 am #

    Croatia is getting a lot of love this round of the challenge, I really love that you kicked it up a notch by featuring Cres. To be honest I’ve never heard of this island but your pictures are awesome. Unfortunately our short visit to Croatia didn’t include any island hopping, looks like a return visit is in order!

    • Jenny Freedman April 4, 2014 at 8:10 am #

      Thanks Calli. Everyone loves Croatia and rightly so…we had a fabulous time there. The islands are stunning so you’ll have to plan that return visit so you can spend some time there!

  12. Shere April 4, 2014 at 4:15 am #

    Croatia was one of our first trips together and your post just brought me some nice memories. We indeed started in Krk and then crossed to Cres 🙂

    Shere y Paul: C is for Canary Islands, Bodegas Monje

    • Jenny Freedman April 4, 2014 at 8:08 am #

      How fantastic that you guys have been there! Did you go on to Losinj as well. Enjoy the memories Shere.

  13. MCV EGAN April 4, 2014 at 5:21 am #

    Your images of Croatia are absolutely magnificent #a2zchallenge great to connect ! I am #1547

    • Jenny Freedman April 4, 2014 at 7:31 am #

      Thankyou…I’ll be over to say hi!

  14. Tam @ TravellingBookJunkie April 4, 2014 at 7:26 am #

    I need to visit this delightful place. It has just been added to the ever growing list. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

    • Jenny Freedman April 4, 2014 at 7:31 am #

      Pleasure Tam. We loved our quick visit here and to the adjoining island of Losinj.

  15. budget jan April 4, 2014 at 8:54 am #

    I think that Croatia must be the most picturesque country on the Planet. Umm well there are N.Z. and Canada to consider. Anyway I hope that our next trip includes Croatia and look forward to you covering it on your blog. My email program is still sending you to Spam even though I tell it not to. I think it must be the A-Z badge that it take offence to!

    • Jenny Freedman April 4, 2014 at 9:09 am #

      Yes, do include Croatia on your next trip Jan…you’ll love it. I may even have some blog posts done by then!! No sure why the emails are going to’ve obviously marked them as not spam. I’ll try one without then badge so we can see what happens!

  16. noel April 4, 2014 at 8:55 am #

    This looks like a lower key version to someplace like Burano still authentic and lived in…i love small towns like this!

    • Jenny Freedman April 4, 2014 at 9:06 am #

      For a moment there I thought I was in Burano Noel. I too love these small towns…Croatia is definitely the place for them!

  17. Chris Boothman April 4, 2014 at 11:30 am #

    Great post, it goes really well with ours which is on the #DreamDestination of Croatia. We didn’t feature Cres so this is certainly another spot worth visiting. I can imagine sitting on that balcony overlooking those beautiful views.

    • Jenny Freedman April 4, 2014 at 6:55 pm #

      Thanks Chris. There’s so many fabulous spots in Croatia, it’s hard to mention them all. Cres is a hidden away on one of the northern islands. Certainly worth a visit if you’re in the area.

  18. Cornelia April 6, 2014 at 12:30 pm #

    OMG, you just brought back memories in me, some 45 years ago, my family took us to those islands, and we had such great times there as young children. As I can see that is has changed a lot!!! Thank you for sharing.

  19. ben April 7, 2014 at 10:00 am #

    I heard so much about Croatian. So much positive feedback about the place. Noted on my bucket lists 🙂

    • Jenny Freedman April 7, 2014 at 8:18 pm #

      There’s definitely a lot being written about Croatia at the moment. It really is a s fabulous as everyone says!

  20. Jess @UsedYorkCity April 8, 2014 at 4:51 am #

    Oh it’s so cute with its colorful buildings! I will definitely try to check this out when I go to Bosnia in the summer! Thanks so much for the info!

    • Jenny Freedman April 8, 2014 at 7:06 am #

      There’s so much to see in Croatia Jess, you might have to leave it for another visit. You’ll be so busy Bosnia….it is going to be amazing!

  21. Carolyn @ Holidays to Europe April 10, 2014 at 4:26 pm #

    Looks lovely, Jenny. Those cafés look so tempting. Cres is now on my bucket list!

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