Planning the trip - It has often been said that planning the trip is half the fun. From deciding which charter company to use, type of vessel, sail or power, this process should be fun and the entire crew should participate. If possible, get the crew together for a 'dalmatian party' that gets everyone in the autentic frame of mind. Talk about expectations, activities, provisioning options, and meal planning.
Ideas for Dalmatian party:
Pršut -dry-cured ham, sliced and served as a cold first dish, with green and black olives on the plate
Cheese – various types of hard cheese made of sheep and cow milk, cut in small sticks or triangles
Olive oil- extra virgine olive oil, just spill it on the plate and eventually add some salt on it
Bread – ideal for combining pršut, cheese and olive oil at once
Bevanda – red or white wine mixed with some amount of natural water
Crew - the good, the bad and the ugly - Make sure everyone is compatible and that expectations of the trip are aligned. Are you more for enthusiastic sailing or spending more time snorkeling and beaching? If you have not sailed together before, think about discussing the following points:
sharing the cost of food and fuel
keeping the boat tidy at all times and cleaning the head area after use
sharing cooking duties
respecting each other’s need for privacy and personal quiet time
Communication during sailing - Staying connected along the Croatian coast can be an expensive proposition, however, there are few tips that can help you save money. If you take your cell phone with you, turn the data roaming off. You can also purchase a pay-as-you-go phone in stores.
Wi-Fi is generally available throughout the whole coast but you will need to seek out a local marina or restaurant and get a password for access. The best sollution is to charter a boat with company that offers Wi-Fi connection on the boat. Of course you should take care of connection speed and GB capacity.
Currency and credit cards - Croatian Kuna is the local currency in Croatia. Major credit cards are widely accepted at the larger restaurants, marinas and supermarkets, but not in the smaller local shops or caffes. Therefore you will need to bring adequate cash to cover these purchases and for nightly mooring fees. ATMs are available at key locations (marinas, supermarkets…) but not everywhere (especially in smaller places on islands), so do not rely on them. Inform your credit card company about your trip before you leave so they don’t shut down your card due to strange and exotic ATM location withdrawals.
Provisioning - When planning a charter in Croatia, there are couple of options available to you. Allow the charter company to provision you from a pre-selected plan. This saves a lot of time but limits your personal choices. Different companies have different plans so ask for sample menus.
Provision yourself from one of the local markets and supermarkets like Konzum, Interspar or Lidl. Further solution is to contact Yamyacht supply for a complete provisioning list and they will deliver it to your boat. This is a good option if you have special dietary needs or if you are looking for particular foods.
Generally speaking, food is more expensive on the islands than on the land and we highly recommend stocking up before the embarkation, as food and drink items become increasingly more expensive on the smaller islands due to logistics.
Don’t forget to order plenty of drinking water (at least a liter per day per person). Tap water is also completely safe for drinking in Croatia, but water from water tanks on the boat is not recommended for drinking.
What to bring - For a week’s charter you should try and fit everything into a soft sided duffle bags. You will spend your time in shorts, t-shirts and bathing suits so don’t overdo the wardrobe. Be careful, nights on the sea can be also chilly and windy so take some long sleeves wardrobe and windproof jackets with you. Suggestion: leave all your good jewelry at home so you don't lose it in the sea.
Your charter company will supply most of the items you require but here are few items that you should consider: medications & toiletries, sunburn cream, wicking sportswear with SPF protection, polarized sunglasses, camera and batteries, bug spray / mosquito repellent, a dry-sack for taking items ashore, books (electronic e-books if possible), baby wipes, LED lamp for reading, games, spices in plastic bags and personal water bottles. Snorkel gear is supplied by many companies but if you have special needs, consider bringing your own mask,snorkel and fins.
Croatian etiquette – Dalmatian people are often rather conservative at heart and quite particular about dress code. It is not polite to wear beach-wear or bathing suits into town, supermarkets, restaurants and especially in churches and museums. Topless sunbathing should be confined to the boat or on particular beaches.
Great importance is to set on croatian greetings such as “good morning” or “good afternoon.”
Get familiar with frases „polako“ (slowly), „fjaka“(siesta) and „nema problema“ (no problem, everything will be solved) ☺.
Garbage disposal and overboard discharge in anchorages is a concern and your charter company will direct you in this regard. Keep the environment and the sea clean!
Safety and security - Croatian coast is considered as a very safe area for cruising. Obey the sailing procedures and distances from swimming areas. Normal precautions should be taken when leaving valuables aboard the boat. Sun protection is perhaps the greatest concern and also the easiest to prevent. Always apply cream in the morning and throughout the day, wear sunglasses and hats.
In case you'll have any troubles, you should contact your charter company to get directions or you can use emergency call 112 to reach croatian emergency call center.