A cluster of 14 islands along Croatia’s Dalmatian Coast, the Elafiti Islands (Elaphite Islands) are one of the country’s most popular destinations and a popular day trip from nearby Dubrovnik. The archipelago’s largest three islets—Kolocep, Lopud, and Sipan—are the focal point of island-hopping tours.
The Elafiti Islands are easy to explore on a day trip from Dubrovnik. Speedboat tours of the three main islands are a popular choice, and typically include stops for swimming, snorkeling, or sea kayaking, as well as free time to visit each island and lunch onboard. For a more personalized experience, choose a private tour and cruise the Adriatic Sea on your own personal boat or yacht.
Things to Know Before You Go
- All the islands are car-free; the only way to get around is on foot or by bicycle.
- Be sure to bring your swimsuit, towel, and sun protection.
- Some ferries and boat tours to the Elafiti Islands are wheelchair accessible, but it’s best to check with the tour operator in advance.
How to Get There
Located in the Adriatic Sea off the coast of Dubrovnik, the Elafiti Islands are only reachable from the water. Ferries and taxi boats travel from Dubrovnik’s Gruz harbor to Kolocep, Lopud, and Sipan. You can also visit all three islands on a full-day trip from Dubrovnik.
When to Get There
Summer—especially July and August— is the most popular time to visit. Boats can fill up quickly during this time, so be sure to book ahead. It’s possible to visit during winter, although ferries and tours are less frequent and may be weather-dependent. Visiting out of season means you’ll avoid crowds and have the sights to yourself, but be aware that most island hotels and restaurants will be closed.
What to See and Do on the Elafiti Islands
Koločep is the nearest island to Dubrovnik, celebrated for its dramatic coastal cliffs, tranquil pebble beaches, and shaded olive groves. Neighboring Lopud is best known for its well-preserved, 11th-century Benedictine monastery, 16th-century churches, and beautiful Sunj beach—the largest sandy beach in Dubrovnik. Sipan is the largest of the three islands, where highlights include the remains of a Roman villa, a 15th-century palace, and multiple walking and cycling trails along the coastline.