Brac:the real thingAlthough best known for its famous Zlatni Rat beach, the real stars of the show on Brac are the picture-perfect hideaway bays such as Bobovisca in the west of the island, the coastal villages and the atmospheric harbours. Brac is conveniently connected by both ferry and catamaran with Split.
Looking for action?Neighbouring Hvar is streets ahead of the other islands in terms of glamour. Great restaurants, outdoor cafes and art galleries jostle for space in Hvar town and glitzy yachts moor in the marina. But the island isn't just about partying: head for the interior and you'll be greeted by landscapes dominated by olive groves, vineyards, pine forests and lavender fields.
Vis, the furthest of the main central Dalmatian islands from the coast, trails behind some of its neighbours in terms of tourist development, largely due to its former status as a military base for the Yugoslav National Army. Coves, caves and a few sandy beaches dot the coastline, while inland, some of Croatia's best wine (red Plavac and white Vugava) is produced.
For the ultimate island escape, stay in an isolated treasure island-style stone cottage, set amongst gardens of palms, pines and pomegranate bushes or at a cluster of villas and bungalows in a hideaway bohemian-style retreat on the Pakleni Islands.
Just 25 minutes by ferry from Dubrovnik, Kolocep Island is just 2.5 square kilometres in size, with two main villages that are linked by a walled pathway. The once fortified summer palaces built by 15th century Dubrovnik nobility are now largely in ruins. Indulge in a whole car and crowd free week or take a day trip to the islands for a quick-fix option