Lošinj travel guide

Read our essential travel guide to discover the best things to do in Lošinj, with hotels, bars, restaurants and more...

Lošinj: Čikat bay
© Lošinj Hotels & Villas

Cres and Lošinj used to be one island until the ancient Liburni tribe dug a canal at Osor. The healthy effects of its sea breezes, clean water and 2,600 hours of annual sunshine earned Lošinj an official designation as a health resort in 1892. Habsburg royalty followed and now tourism is the island’s main industry.

Activity centres around two towns with misleading labels. Mali Lošinj, ‘Small Lošinj’, is the bigger settlement, about four kilometres from quaint little Veli Lošinj, ‘Great Lošinj’.

Mali Lošinj, the largest island town in the Adriatic, with a population of 7,000, is set around a long, wide harbour, lined with Habsburg-era facades. Strolling from one end
of the harbour to the other takes 20 minutes – it’s a nice waterside lined with great restaurants and bars.

RECOMMENDED: More great travel destinations in Croatia.

Everything you need to know about Lošinj
Things to do

Everything you need to know about Lošinj

The rocky seabed around Lošinj means there’s no sand to cloud the water, and you can see straight down for a long way. Thanks to this seabed, the currents and conservation, the water around the island is some of the cleanest in the Adriatic, which is why this area is a magnet for dolphins; you may see the beautiful creatures chasing the ferry boat that brings you to this island. The clean water is also an attraction for spearfishers, who hold regular tournaments here, as well as ordinary holidaymakers, who enjoy swimming in the clear waters. Back on shore, the attractions of Lošinj include beautiful nature as well as luxury resort settlements full of quality bars and restaurants. Cres and Lošinj used to be one island until the ancient Liburni tribe dug a canal at Osor. The healthy effects of its sea breezes, clean water and 2,600 hours of annual sunshine earned Lošinj an official designation as a health resort in 1892. Habsburg royalty followed and now tourism is the island’s main industry. Activity centres around two towns with misleading labels. Mali Lošinj, ‘Small Lošinj’, is the bigger settlement, about four kilometres from quaint little Veli Lošinj, ‘Great Lošinj’. Mali Lošinj, the largest island town in the Adriatic, with a population of 7,000, is set around a long, wide harbour, lined with Habsburg-era facades. Strolling from one end of the harbour to the other takes 20 minutes – it’s a nice waterside lined with great restaurants and bars. Trg Republike Hrvatske is th

Ten amazing things you can only do in Lošinj
Things to do

Ten amazing things you can only do in Lošinj

The healthy effects of its sea breezes, clean water and 2,600 hours of annual sunshine makes Lošinj one of the Adriatic's most desirable destinations.  Activity centres around two towns with misleading labels. Mali Lošinj, ‘Small Lošinj’, is the bigger settlement, about four kilometres from quaint little Veli Lošinj, ‘Great Lošinj’ Mali Lošinj, the largest island town in the Adriatic, with a population of 7,000, is set around a long, wide harbour, lined with Habsburg-era facades. Strolling from one end of the harbour to the other takes 20 minutes – it’s a nice waterside lined with great hotels, restaurants and bars. RECOMMENDED: More things to do in Lošinj.

The best Lošinj restaurants
Restaurants

The best Lošinj restaurants

Mali Lošinj harbour is lined with fine seafood restaurants. At Veli Lošinj, Rovenska harbour is a gastro enclave with Sirius and the Bora Bar Trattoria/Tartufferia.

The best beaches in Lošinj
Things to do

The best beaches in Lošinj

Which of Croatia’s islands should you visit? There are worse decisions to be faced with, but with over a thousand unique options on offer, choosing is no easy feat. But if it’s rejuvenation you’re after, Lošinj has few contenders. ‘The island of vitality’, as it’s come to be known, is blessed with great weather, sweeping landscapes and lustrous vegetation - a combination said to have uncanny healing powers. The two larger towns on the island, Mali Lošinj, and Veli Lošinj, are surrounded by some of Croatia’s most unspoiled beaches, all of which offer clear turquoise water and the chance to spot dolphins leaping in the waves. That leads you to your next head-scratcher: which idyllic beach to choose?  The nicest beaches near Mali Lošinj, with either rocky or pebbly surfaces, are to the west and north of town, in the wooded bays of Čikat and Sunčana Uvala, an area with several resort hotels that can be reached on foot from Mali Lošinj or via special hotel buses. In Veli Lošinj, Timi beach near the old cemetery and Rovenska beach in Rovenska harbour provide pebbly and concrete surfaces, plus snack bars. Follow the coastal path from Rovenska and you pass more secluded rocky beaches. If you continue along this shore for close to three kilometres, however, you’ll reach quiet Javorna, a small but beautiful crescent of pebbles, backed by fragrant woodland.

Advertising
The best campsites in Lošinj
Hotels

The best campsites in Lošinj

Thanks to big developments by the Lošinj Hotels & Villas group, the range of campsites in Lošinj has improved immeasurably - there are now several fantastically equipped campsites on the islands, all family-friendly and just a short walk from the beach. RECOMMENDED: the best beaches in Lošinj.  

The best Lošinj hotels
Hotels

The best Lošinj hotels

Local tourism concern Lošinj Hotels & Villas has got big plans for the island, accentuating the sport, spa and wellness aspects of local tourism and updating all of its hotels to serious luxury status. In addition, Mali Lošinj also has two good boutique hotels, the Apoksiomen and Mare Mare.

The wellness island of Lošinj
Things to do

The wellness island of Lošinj

Spread across a low hillside just above Veli Lošinj is a set of dry-stone terraces covered in pungent clumps of sage, rosemary, lavender, oregano, thyme, and yellow-flowered and spicy smelling immortelle. A stone gardener’s hut displays soaps, essential oils and liqueurs made from the herbs, although simply breathing the garden’s air is intoxicating enough. Lošinj’s Fragrant Island Garden (Miomirisni otočki vrt) is the perfect introduction to an island that has long been celebrated for its health-giving properties, thanks to a uniquely wide range of Mediterranean fauna and a specific microclimate that combines salty sea air with mild temperatures. Not for nothing does Lošinj call itself the ‘island of vitality’. The island is a form of therapy in itself, and you are indulging in the benefits of health tourism simply by breathing the air. Hotel Aurora / © Lošinj Hotels & Villas We often imagine that travel is capable of delivering a transformational effect, sending us home healthier, more energized, or more at peace with ourselves than we were when we left. This green island in the northern Adriatic is one of those rare destinations that might actually fulfill this promise. Famous as a health resort at the end of the 19th century, Lošinj is reemerging with renewed vigour as one of the Adriatic’s leading destinations for health, fitness and spa tourism. It was the popular search for recuperative health cures that led to Lošinj’s emergence as a health resort in the late 19t

Everything you need to know about the Lošinj Apoxyomenos
Art

Everything you need to know about the Lošinj Apoxyomenos

An ambitious clutch of spanking new museums has changed the face of Croatian tourism over the last few years; none, however, has been quite so talked about as the Museum of the Apoxyomenos in Mali Lošinj. Devoted to a single Greco-Roman statue of a handsome young athlete, the museum weaves a beguiling narrative around this uniquely charismatic piece of bronze, all presented in electrifying, state-of-the-art style. The Lošinj Apoxyomenos / © Mirna Pibernik, Time Out The name Apoxyomenos is an ancient Greek term meaning something like ‘The Scraper’, a reference to the habit of athletes of cleansing their skin with a scraping tool known as a strigil. The subject was a common one among classical sculptors, although only a handful of Hellenistic-era copies survive. There are Apoxyomenos statues in Rome, Vienna and Florence, although it’s the Lošinj Apoxyomenos that is considered the most perfect example of the genre yet found. Only the strigil is missing, leaving the statue in an ambiguous open-handed posture that if anything makes it even more compelling.  The discovery of the Apoxyomenos, cast into the Adriatic near Lošinj over 2000 years ago, is an object lesson in how it pays to keep your eyes peeled when exploring the sea bottom. The sponge- and barnacle-covered bronze hunk was first spotted by vacationing Belgian scuba-diver Rene Wouten in 1996; it look the authorities a further 3 years to bring it to the surface. The statue was sent to expert restoration departments in

Where to eat and drink in Lošinj

The best Lošinj restaurants
Restaurants

The best Lošinj restaurants

Mali Lošinj harbour is lined with fine seafood restaurants. At Veli Lošinj, Rovenska harbour is a gastro enclave with Sirius and the Bora Bar Trattoria/Tartufferia.

Alfred Keller
Restaurants

Alfred Keller

Named after the star Austrian architect who designed it, the Alfred Keller is a riot of marble and onyx, overlooking scenic Čikat Bay. Given the fact that the inspectors at Gault&Millau bestowed not one but two chef ’s toques on this upscale à la carte dining destination, the cuisine more than matches the sumptuous furnishings. Chef Thomas Brasleret delves deep into Lošinj culinary lore – and sources as close to home as possible, particularly where aromatic herbs and seasonal organic products are concerned – to conjure something memorable. Of course, the material he has to work with is already first-class, Cres lamb, fresh clams and shellfish, Istrian boškarin beef, even donkey meat – but it takes that little bit extra to complement each dish with a local or international wine from over 400 labels lining the cellar. Open from April to November.

Time Out says
5 out of 5 stars
Restaurant Matsunoki
Restaurants

Restaurant Matsunoki

Top-quality sushi and an open kitchen are the hallmarks of this swish Asian restaurant in the Hotel Bellevue. It’s, in fact, a fusion cuisine, in that in chef Saša Pribičević uses locally sourced Mediterranean ingredients from nearby organic producers to create his sublime maki, nigiri and chirashi, not to mention kimchi and dashi fish soup. Invention isn’t restricted to your main course – the matcha ice cream comes with a sweet paste of healthy adzuki beans. Authenticity stretches to the drinks list, where you’ll find Japanese whiskies from the likes of Nikka Taketsuru, sake brandies and wines, both sparkling and still. The acclaimed Frantić-Šekoranja studio was responsible for the exquisite decor. Open from July to December.

Time Out says
5 out of 5 stars
Restaurant Punta
Restaurants

Restaurant Punta

The signature restaurant of the Vitality Hotel Punta in smaller, quieter Veli Lošinj reflects the tranquillity of the picture-postcard harbour around it. On its expansive terrace, overlooking the divine blue of the Adriatic, you can take your time over the succulent peka dishes slow-cooked under a so-called cooking bell – just give them a call to have the kitchen staff prepare your feast a few hours ahead of time. The seafood is fresh, the lamb and veal chops juicy, and the boškarin beef exquisite. Choose from some 50 Croatian wines to accompany. Open from April to October.

Time Out says
4 out of 5 stars
Silver Bay
Restaurants

Silver Bay

Freshly opened in 2019, Silver Bay offers sophisticated versions of Mediterranean classics, set on a sea-facing promenade. You’ll find plenty of Adriatic fish and meat dishes alongside fresh salads and cold cuts. There’s an impressive cocktail list to sample at any time, but if you’re going for the full meal experience, you might prefer to pair your menu choices with some of the excellent Croatian wine, sparkling wine and champagnes from the restaurant’s well-stocked cellar.

Time Out says
5 out of 5 stars
Bora Bar Trattoria/Tartufferia
Restaurants

Bora Bar Trattoria/Tartufferia

This charming spot is run by chef Marco Sasso. Born in Pisa, Sasso was one of the first truffle dealers in the United States before coming to Croatia. He gets the fungus fresh from Istria and applies it in starters, such as tuna carpaccio with marinated celery roots and truffles. Other ingredients come fresh from the sea on which the terrace is perched. Desserts include own-made panna cotta or chocolate mousse.