Croatia in January: Weather, Tips and More


January is the coldest month of the year to visit Croatia and you will get great bargains on hotels as it is a low tourist season. Does it snow in Croatia in winter? You bet it does! And the ski season is in full swing in January. Dig into the history of urban centers like Dubrovnik and Split, admire the stark beauty of frozen lakes at Plitvice Lakes National Park, and enjoy winter festivals along with seasonal markets that spring up across the country during your stay in Croatia in January.

Croatia Weather in January

View of Dubrovnik`s walls and Dubrovnik City Walls, Croatia in January
Experience the ancient architecture of Dubrovnik on your trip to Croatia in January

It is cold in Croatia in January, with temperatures often going below the freezing point. However, the weather varies according to the region. While the country’s inland areas are a few degrees colder than the coastal stretch, destinations in the country’s south are wetter.

You are likely to encounter snow while on a trip to Croatia in January, especially in the country’s interior. Capital Zagreb sees average highs of 3.7 °C and lows of -3 °C during this time of year. However, you are unlikely to experience much rain while in the city.

If you are wondering about Dubrovnik’s weather, January is comparatively warmer along with this coastal city, with average temperatures ranging from 7 °C to 0 °C, but keep in mind that it is also rainier than Zagreb. Split, a coastal city with a Mediterranean climate, experiences even milder weather, with average temperatures ranging from a minimum of 5.9 °C to a maximum of 10.7 °C. On average, the country receives about 9.1 hours of daylight in January.

Check out our travel guide on the best time to visit Croatia for more information.

Weather in Croatia in January - Rainfall and Temperatures

Avg Daily (°C)38131520232727221584
Avg Nightly (°C)-3-124101315151072-1
Avg Daily (°F)37.446.455.4596873.480.680.671.65946.439.2
Avg Nightly (°F)26.630.235.639.25055.459595044.635.630.2
Avg Rainfall (mm)38506066861047279665411853

Why Visit Croatia in January

Zagreb upper town christmas market evening view, Croatia in January
Enjoy Christmas like never in Croatia in January within the historic town of Zagreb
Croatia is one of the best countries to visit on a budget
For the ones who are looking for an active holiday, go rock climbing in the mountains of the Dinaric Alps

Visiting Croatia in January may not be the most popular thing to do. Nevertheless, below are a few reasons why you should consider flying into the country during this time of year.

  • Festival time: Croatia sees some exciting events and festivals like the Rijeka Carnival, with its concerts, exhibitions, and street parties, during this time of year. In addition to this, there is the Night of the Museums, during which galleries and museums welcome visitors for free on the last Friday of the month.
  • Super deals: There is a temporary hike in the number of tourists coming into Croatia to enjoy Christmas and new year celebrations. But after the celebrations are over, hotel tariffs plunge and you can get discounts as high as 50 percent during this month.
  • Thin crowds: Since this is a low tourist season, you can enjoy long coastal walks and top-rated destinations while very few people are around. It is almost as if you have the whole country to yourself.
  • Ski season: Croatia is fast emerging as a great alternative to some of the more expensive skiing destinations in Europe. Sljeme, Platak, and Mukinje are among the top ski resorts in the country.

Where to go and what to do

View of Plitvice Lakes during Croatia in January
Adventure through the snowy landscapes and lakes of Plitvice during Croatia in January

From getting an adrenaline rush while skiing down a slope and visiting old castles covered with snow to soaking in city vibes and taking long walks along enchanting coasts — Croatia in January is full of exciting destinations and discoveries. Stroll along the alleys and squares of Zagreb’s historic Upper Town; see the thirteenth-century Cathedral of Saint Mark, with its colorful tiled roof and medieval coat of arms; ride the world’s shortest public transport funicular while in the city and enjoy an al-fresco bathing experience at an outdoor thermal spa.

It is hard to navigate the narrow streets of Dubrovnik without bumping into people in summer. But come January and you can explore the charming streets of this coastal town uninterrupted and walk on its medieval stone wall without having to worry about crossing paths with anyone else. You might also want to join in the fun at Dubrovnik’s winter festival, with its traditional cuisines, endless shopping opportunities, and street parties. Split is a delightful destination in January, its Mediterranean climate ensuring that it rarely gets bone-chillingly cold. Explore the city’s fish and produce markets during a guided culinary tour, sample the best of Dalmatian wines, and visit the Ivan Meštrović Gallery to find out what made Ivan Meštrović (1883-1962) Croatia’s greatest sculptor. There are many exciting and interesting things in Croatia, make your pick. 

Depending on how many days you have in Croatia, you can also consider a trip to Plitvice Lakes National Park. Snow and ice add an otherworldly quality to its landscape during this time of year. If you are a photographer, this is the perfect opportunity to take some magical January pictures. For more information, read our article on how many days to spend in Croatia. There is nothing stopping you from exploring Croatia’s wonderful cities, going on a skiing adventure, and visiting some stunning national parks across the country in January. Our travel experts can help you plan a customized trip to Croatia.

Below are our tours to Croatia in January for more inspiration.

Other articles:
Croatia in December
Croatia in February

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