Can holidaymakers spend a week on Croatia’s greenest and most beautiful island without it costing a fortune? Of course, they can! Take a read through our helpful budget tips for your holiday to Korcula and make your kuna go further.
When to visit
Several low-cost airlines operate flights to nearby Dubrovnik and Split airports (flying daily during the summer season). A return flight from London to Croatia outside of the peak season can be significantly cheaper than flying in the summer. So if the sun is not your main holiday priority, how about a Spring holiday to Korcula or come for a visit at the start of autumn? Be sure to book early to keep get the best flight prices and keep an eye on airline sales, as you may be able to pick up a bargain flight.
Read more tips about when to visit Korcula.
Public transport is typically very reliable and inexpensive. So if you can it is best value to travel around by bus or catamaran.
Car hire can be expensive but if you prefer to opt for this method, shop around for a good deal. It is usually better to rent a car on the mainland rather than on the island. Taxis can be quite expensive and work out more cost-effective if you are travelling in a group of 4 or more people.
Save on accommodation
Next up, accommodation. The first recommendation is to book a private apartment or room rather than check into a hotel. Hotels are significantly more expensive so unless you specifically want the hotel experience, it is a more budget-friendly option. Private apartments or rooms also offer more privacy and space and often have an outdoor balcony or terrace. Take a look through some excellent self-catering apartments on Korcula Island here.
The cost of accommodation jumps dramatically in the main summer months of July and August. So if you are able to come at another time, this is a great cost saver. Sacrifice the sea view or be happy to walk 10 minutes into the nearest village or town and you will be able to save yourself even more money.
Read our guide about where to stay in Korcula Town.
Eat & drink well for less
Following accommodation, your next big expenditure is food and drink. Be smart and you can stretch your budget and still eat delicious local food.
Choosing a restaurant
Of course, you will want to go out and sample some traditional dishes. Don’t pick a restaurant on the main tourist drag as they can charge top dollar just because of their location. The restaurants a little further walk out of the centre or in a nearby village or bay are often more reasonable.
You might find restaurants offering reduced prices at lunch-time or a seasonal set menu at a lower price outside of the peak months.
What to eat & drink
For an affordable breakfast or lunch option head to a bakery for a sweet or savoury pastry. One must try is a burek. It is made of layered filo pastry filled with meat, cheese or vegetable and is very delicious. Other cheap eats include tasty pizza and pasta or one-pot traditional dishes such as brodet or pasticada. Look out for restaurants offering marenda, which is a set daily dish. For 30-40 Kuna you can get a tasty and authentic meal. For example in Korcula Town, Skver and Planjak have a marenda option.
You will want to sample the fish, as here it is of the finest quality anywhere in the Mediterranean. However first-class fish such as sea bass or bream is expensive and often sold by the weight. Instead, try 2nd or 3rd class “blue” fish such as mackerel or sardine. This type of fish is great in flavour and more reasonable cost. If you can opt for a set price fish dish rather than paying by the weight. And make sure your fish is fresh. The eyes should be black, shiny and bulging, not depressed and greying or whitening. The rest of the fish must be shiny.
To accompany your meal order a carafe of the table wine (house red or white). This wine will be locally made, refreshing and a fraction of the price of branded bottles. If you prefer to avoid a spirit, opt for Croatian brands which cost less than imported brands.
Remember you do not have to eat out. Why not prepare yourself a delicious and inexpensive homemade meal using local ingredients and enjoy from the comfort of your terrace. There are butchers, fish markets and fresh produce markets on the island, for you to source the best products.
Free or inexpensive things to do
Mother Nature provides for all travellers to Korcula at no cost. You do not have to pay for the stunning views or to swim in the clearest of seas! Here’s how to enjoy the best of Korcula for free (or for a little bit of money):
- There are some remarkable bays and secluded coves to swim where you can relax and while away the day.
- If you are happy to use a little energy, there are some great walks on the island which will lead you to some extraordinary views and remote places.
- Hire a bicycle and enjoy some coastal views, stopping to cool off at a small beach. Our self-guided cycling tour from Korcula to Lumbarda provides lots of fun and factual information and a 10% discount off bike rental.
- Take to the crystal clear waters by kayak. Like I mentioned at the beginning.
- Wander Korcula Old Town on a self-guided tour and sit for a coffee to watch the world go by.
- Packs up some breakfast or an easy supper and head to watch the sunrise or sunset – both are magical.
- Find some of the best viewpoints on Korcula and take some memorable photos.
Remember it does not cost anything to spend your time in the sun surrounded by natural beauty on Korcula Island!
And for a very small price, download a copy of Korcula Island Guide which includes recommendations of places to eat and drink and ideas of more things to do.
We hope you found our budget tips for your holiday on Korcula helpful. Do you have any of your own holiday budgeting tips?