Slow Roads Croatia: the Elafiti Islands near Dubrovnik

Elafiti Islands are a small archipelago consisting of several islands, located off the coast of Dubrovnik. Only three islands are inhabited: Kolocep (or Kalamota), Lopud, and Sipan.

Elaphite Islands Dubrovnik | Dubrovnik Travel Blog
Elaphite Islands Dubrovnik | Dubrovnik Travel Blog

We've been lucky enough to visit all three islands back in April. And we visited them in style – aboard nice motor yacht Jeanneau Prestige 42 Fly.

We started our day cruising along the coast of Dubrovnik, from the town's port to the old town, then around the Lokrum Island, and off to the Elafiti Islands. Seriously, I've never expected to fall so much in love with this beautiful archipelago.

Each island is pretty in its own way. They are all very small with only one or two settlements, beautiful unspoiled nature, gorgeous sandy and pebble beaches, and slow pace of life.

People come here to relax, to swim or kayak in a crystal blue sea, and to indulge in small pleasures of life. We couldn't stop taking photos trying the capture the beauty of these islands.

Elafiti Islands hopping

A car-free island of Kolocep, or as locals call it Kalamota, is the closest to Dubrovnik. Kolocep is a small island with two settlements. There is a nice 3 km long walking trail between the villages.

Both villages are located within a small cove and protected from the winds. Donje Celo is the island's main village, with couple of bars, restaurants, and one hotel (and few apartment rentals!).

Elafiti Islands: Kolocep
View over a small village on the Kolocep Island

The only hotel on the island, the Kalamota Resort, is all-inclusive couples only hotel. Restaurant and lounge bar Villa Ruza has wonderful seafront terrace, and it is a popular dining spot on the island (not that the choice is wide :) ) – even if you are not staying at the island, you can try out the restaurant.

The staff can organize a private taxi boat to take you to the restaurant and back to the mainland. There is a small sandy beach in the village. You can rent kayaks, or a motor boat, or just explore the island on foot.

Elafiti Islands: Sunj Beach
Sunj Beach on the island of Lopud

A car-free island of Lopud is the most popular Elafiti Island. There is only one village on the island (also called Lopud). A wonderful, over one kilometer long sandy beach Sunj is a popular summer spot for tourists and locals.

The beach has few beach shack restaurants, offers deck chairs and parasols to rent, as well as snorkeling and kayak rentals and tours. The beach is located on the opposite end of the island's only village.

You can reach the beach by boat, on foot (not far, but on a hot summer day a bit tough), or by a golf carts that run continuously between the village and the beach (approx. 3 € per person). The hotel Lafodia is the only hotel on the island.

Elafiti Islands: Sipan
Suduraj, a small fishing village on the island of Sipan

With the surface of 16 km2, Sipan is the largest Elafiti island. There are two small fishing villages located at either end of the island: smaller Suduraj, and bigger village Sipanska Luka.

The two are 5 kilometers apart one from the other, and there is a local bus running between the villages (usually scheduled in accordance with a ferry schedule). You can also walk from one to another village.

Both villages have several restaurants and bars, nice beaches and a hotel. We've actually spent the most time in Suduraj. It's really small, but very charming village. There is a beautiful 16th century fortress in the village. It used to be a summer residence of a local sea merchant.

Practical information about Elafiti Islands

  • Each island is very small. There is not much to do there out of the main season (except walking & exploring). Take that in consideration when planning a visit to the islands during a shoulder season, or on a rainy day.
  • If you are not into peace and quiet, or “away from it all” kind of holidays, the islands are still worth a visit at least for a day.
  • The islands can be reach by ferry, a private taxi boat, or on a organized island cruise departing daily from Dubrovnik
  • The ferry departs from Dubrovnik and it takes 30 minutes to reach Kolocep, another 20 minutes to reach Lopud, and additional 20 minutes to reach Sipan. The one-way ferry ticket costs 23 kn per person (approx. 3  €). Ferry schedule to Elafiti Islands you can check at Jadrolinija website.

Have you ever been to the Elafiti Islands? Would you like to go? Let us know in the comments below. 

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5 thoughts on “Slow Roads Croatia: the Elafiti Islands near Dubrovnik”

  1. Love, love Lopud! Been a couple of times stayed at Lafodia , wonderful hotel and just a beautiful relaxing island ?

  2. Thank you to share, comes into my list of tips.
    Aug 4-27 we stay in the region of Trogir. Aug 18-22 we make a trip to the Dubrovnik region.
    I like your way of blogging. Lots of reading material, but instructive. And above all, for people like us who like to travel in this manner, “away from it all” and “slow living”.


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