What is the only thing to worry about when planning a sailing holiday with us? Bad weather. Well, I’m here to explain that even rain, storm, and strong winds can’t ruin your one-of-a-kind sailing holiday.
You booked your sailing trip to Croatia a long time ago. You’ve been daydreaming about relaxing on a yacht with nothing to do except enjoy your trip. You have a crew that takes care of every detail. You fly to Split, and it starts raining. You’re devastated. Well, don’t be! You’re in good hands.
The chances that the bad weather will ruin your trip are slim to none. Croatia has no hurricanes, and the weather doesn’t stay bad for more than a few days, at least not in the summer when it’s the sailing holiday season. You don’t need to worry about safety. You might miss some of the destinations you planned, but on the other hand, you might find the unplanned ones even better.
ALWAYS LISTEN TO YOUR SKIPPER
It had happened before that we had bad weather and had to stay at one place for a few days. I’m not going to lie; it can happen again. But it’s not common. In the last five years, it happened three times. What if you’re the lucky one, and it happens again when you decide to come to Croatia?
To answer this question, I have to describe the three times it has happened so far. You will get a better idea of what to do if the weather could be better. The most important thing is to listen to your skipper. He is a trained professional and is in charge of the crew. It might seem like nothing is happening in the safe port, but you don’t want to try the open waters in case of bad weather. Your skipper has sailed in Croatia for many years and always acts in your best interest.
WINDS IN CROATIA
For all of you that haven’t been to Croatia, or you’ve been, but the weather was perfect, I have to mention the possibility of strong winds. The two most famous winds here are Bura and Jugo. They have an interesting history, but I will write about that later. Now I have to focus on what those winds bring to the table, or in this case, to your sailing week. They bring waves, rain, a rolling sea, and sea sickness.
Suitable solutions to seasickness include acupressure wristbands, special candy, and Dramamine. Remember, it might be too late once you start feeling seasick, so I recommend taking the Dramamine as soon as possible! We always have some in stock if you don’t bring any.
FIRST CASE OF BAD WEATHER
The first time we stayed for two consecutive nights in one location was in 2018. It was on the island of Brač, in a small and very safe bay, Bobovišća.
After we tied the catamaran to a buoy, we made sure that everything was safe and had a talk with our guests about their activities. They weren’t thrilled about the weather but again, who would be? The wind in question was Jugo. They soon realized they could swim because Jugo doesn’t mean the temperature drops significantly or the sea is colder. Jugo brings rain, but a warm one. Nothing harmful can happen if you’re in the right anchorage spot, mooring, or in the harbor.
After the swim, the captain took them with a tender to a delicious small, family-owned restaurant in the village. After dinner, they had a walk there. Side note, it’s a charming village from the 17th century. It’s also called a poets village because one of the greatest Croatian poets was born there. After the short walk, they returned to the boat and played their favorite tunes with a glass of wine and many board games every yacht offers. This doesn’t sound so bad, right?
We all woke up the next day hoping we would sail to our next destination, but unfortunately, that wasn’t possible. And here comes the answer to the main question. What can we do in case of bad weather? Our guest chose a guided tour around the island. Brač is the largest island in Dalmatia, and there is plenty of things to do here. We organized a guided tour with our trusted partners immediately. The car was waiting for them in front of the restaurant they had dinner in the day before. The tour started in a small village close by, continued to the olive oil museum, and then to the highest peak of the central dalmatian island. After the tour, they came to the yacht and had a delicious dinner onboard. Our guests later said it was their favorite day.
SECOND CASE OF BAD WEATHER
After almost a hundred weeks of sailing, I am confident that choosing a harbor in case of lousy weather is the best option. It’s just because being on land offers more possibilities. In this case, your skipper is irreplaceable. He has contacts, follows the weather prognosis days ahead, and will secure a place for you. This scenario happened to us in Starigrad, on the island of Hvar. Our skipper organized everything in time, and we could relax.
When the weather is bad, it doesn’t mean it will rain all day. In the summer, the rain usually stops after a couple of hours. I’m mentioning this because one of the options is renting scooters. Our guests did that on this sailing trip and were thrilled. They drove around the whole island, went wine tasting, had fantastic lunch in a family-owned tavern, and visited ancient villages along the way.
They came back to the yacht with new friends and memories for life. In the evening, they explored the city, bought handmade Croatian souvenirs, and tried one of the best gelatos in Croatia.
THIRD CASE OF BAD WEATHER
Unfortunately, we couldn’t sail out that day. It was Saturday, and we were waiting for our guests to arrive at 5 PM. It didn’t stop raining since early morning, and the wind was getting stronger by the hour.
The guests came, a group of six friends, we opened a bottle of delicious sparkling wine from the north of Croatia, and they enjoyed welcome snacks. For those who still have doubts about Croatian wine, give them a chance. You will for sure find something for yourself. If you don’t like wine, we have excellent beer and brandy. We also produce delicious gin. The moral of the story, there will always be something tasty to drink. If not alcohol, then great tea options, freshly squeezed juices, and sodas.
After our guests chose the cabins and settled in, we told them the options. They decided to go to Trogir, do some sightseeing, eat at our friends’ local tavern and go dancing. The next day we sailed out and spent most of the day in a bay swimming, sunbathing, and doing water sports.
To conclude, I wanted to describe our three bad weather days in the last five years so you can get a better idea of what to do if it happens to you.
Here are three more options for a great rainy day on your sailing holidays:
1. SPOIL YOURSELF!
The first option is to spoil yourself because you deserve it! Is there anything better than getting a massage while it’s raining? Or a pedicure, manicure, or facial treatment? Even a hair appointment would be excellent. After all, it’s your sailing vacation, and you should get pampered. We know the best places that offer world-class services. You are in for a treat.
2. ARE YOU A BOOK OR A MOVIE PERSON?
The second option includes reading a book or watching a movie. Of course, you can choose both. It doesn’t sound luxurious, but your yacht will feel like a home. And close time with your family and friends, or precious alone time with yourself, will relax you completely. Bigger catamarans have good-sized TVs. They are hidden and usually used for big sports tournaments (heads up Croatia, fight for the bronze, most of the world is cheering for you!) or in case of bad weather.
3. HISTORY, CULTURE, ARCHITECTURE, OR PEOPLE-WATCHING?
The third option is visiting museums, galleries, churches, cathedrals, and convents. Out of many possible options, I will name only a few.
Small town Pučišća, on the island of Brač, is a must if you find yourself close by. You can visit the stone masonry school there. It is one of only three schools in Europe that still teach manual stone carving techniques. They are renowned for their stone masonry, and the legend says even part of The American White House is built with that stone.
The Meštrović Gallery in Split is so beautiful you can spend hours learning about one of the greatest sculptors famous around Europe, Canada, and the USA. Ivan Meštrović was the first living artist to exhibit at the Metropolitan Museum of Arts in New York in 1947.
The next one on this list is probably the most photographed church, located in Dubrovnik, the Church of Saint Blaise. If you’re not a big church person, I recommend sitting on the wide staircase and terrace and watching the world go by.
You can also visit the oldest public theatre in Europe on Hvar island. The theater is located in the Hvar town central square, and from there, everything is within walking distance. Did you know Hvar has more UNESCO heritage than any other island in the world? More reason to visit Hvar, right?
The whole list is too long for this article, but now you know there is something to see during the bad weather in every part of Croatia.
ONE OF THE MAIN SAILING RULES
Finally, I want to share with you one of the rules of sailing. Keep an open mind, as things do change. And as we read all the time, every change is good for us. At least, I can vouch that changes on our sailing holidays always are.
I hope I have eased your mind regarding the possibility of bad weather during your sailing week. If I missed anything or you want to share your experience, let me know in the article’s comment section. Email me with any questions regarding sailing in Croatia. I’m your sailing lady, and I can help.
See you in Croatia,
Author: Vedrana Radanović
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