Croatia Population, Main Cities and Geography

By | January 27, 2023

Croatia: population and cities


According to Countryaah website, Croatia has about 4.4 million residents.

Ethnic composition

  • Croatian 90%
  • Serbs 5%
  • Bosniaks 0.5%
  • Italian 0.4%
  • Hungary 0.4%
  • Albanians 0.3%
  • Slovenes 0.3%
  • Czechs 0.2%


About 88% of Croats are Catholic. The Serbian population is almost exclusively Christian Orthodox – around 4% of the total population. There is also an Islamic religious community (around 1%) and a small Jewish community.

  • Roman Catholic 88%
  • Serbian Orthodox 4%
  • Muslim 1%
  • Protestants 0.4%
  • Atheists 5%
  • Unknown 1.6%

National languages

Croatian and Serbo-Croatian.

The Croatian language belongs to the South Slavic subgroup of the Slavic branch of the Indo-European languages and is written with Latin letters. From a linguistic point of view, Croatian is largely identical to Serbian and Bosnian and was combined with them to form “Serbo-Croatian” until the fall of Yugoslavia. Since the breakup of Yugoslavia into different nation states, the respective dialects have also been recognized as different languages. Croatian is currently spoken by around 4.8 million people in Croatia, where it is also the official language. Furthermore, Croatian is still spoken as a mother tongue in some areas of Bosnia-Herzegovina, especially in Herzegovina (the area around Mostar) and in northeastern Bosnia (in the area around Bosanski Brod).

Capital, other cities

The capital of Croatia is Zagreb, with a population of around 790,000. According to Abbreviation Finder, HRV stands for Croatia in English. Click to see other meanings of this 3-letter acronym.

The 10 biggest cities including Zagreb are:

  • Split, approx. 200,000 residents
  • Rijeka, about 150,000 residents
  • Osijek, about 120,000 residents
  • Zadar, approx. 75,000 residents
  • Slavonski Brod, approx. 70,000 residents
  • Velika Gorica, about 65,000 residents
  • Karlovac, about 60,000 residents
  • Pula, approx. 59,000 residents
  • Sisak, approx. 53,000 residents

And not to forget Dubrovnik, the pearl of the Adriatic with around 44,000 residents.

Croatia: geography, map

Croatia shares a border with the following four countries:

  • Bosnia-Herzegovina with a length of around 930 km
  • Slovenia with a length of around 500 km
  • Hungary with a length of around 330 km
  • Serbia and Montenegro with a length of around 265 km.


The country has a sea coast (including its islands) with a length of around 5,835 km. Check topmbadirectory for politics, flags, famous people, animals and plants of Croatia.

Area, land use and geology

Croatia covers a total area of around 89,810 km², of which around 33,200 km² is in the sea area.


  • ForestAround 35% of the country is forested.
  • Fields and fieldsAround 57% of the land is used as arable land, fields or meadows, especially for growing cereals (wheat, rye), potatoes, sugar beets, hops, corn, wine, fruit (apples, peaches, pears, cherries, etc.), Vegetables, olives, poppy seeds, tobacco etc.


The landscape of Croatia was essentially formed 180 million years ago (Upper Jurassic) to about 55 million years ago (Eocene). These charming karst formations were built from carbonates. The appearance is irregular and very rugged. Istria is assigned to the northwestern part of the Adriatic carbonate platform.

Dalmatia, on the other hand, consists of the upper folds, which were caused by the continental collision of the northwest and southeast running hollows and saddle structures in the so-called Dinaric phase 30 million years ago.

The predominant part of the soil type in Croatia is the so-called red earth (“terra Rossa”). This covers the Dolomites and limestones in large parts of the country. Millions of fossil inclusions can be found in large areas.

The Dinaric Mountains (also known as the Dinaric Alps) is a south-east European mountain system that connects to the Eastern Alps. It is a southeastern branch of the Alps. It connects to the Julian Alps in northeast Italy and Slovenia and runs over the Balkan Peninsula (Croatia in particular the region of Dalmatia, Bosnia-Herzegovina and especially Montenegro) to the Drin in northern Albania. Here it goes over to the northern Albanian Alps.

The highest point is the Jezercë in Albania with a height of 2,694 m.

The Dinaric Mountains are among the highest and steepest in Europe. It consists largely of limestone and is characterized by its strong karstification, which is particularly pronounced between Dalmatia and Bosnia. The Dinaric Mountains, like the Central Alps, were created by the collision of the African-Arabian and Eurasian plates in the Oligocene, which has continued into the present day.

Tidal range

At the coasts and ports of the country, the mean tidal range is only around 0.2 to 0.4 m.

For detailed explanations of ebb and flow, see Tides, Ebb and Flow.


The world’s highest tidal range can be found in the Bay of Fundy in Canada, where it is up to 16 m, and at spring tide even over 20 m. The Bay of Fundy is located on the Atlantic between the Canadian provinces of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, which is called Nova Scotia in German and whose capital is Halifax. On the German North Sea coast it varies between 1 m and 3 m. In the western Baltic Sea, on the other hand, the tidal range is only 0.3 m, while it is barely noticeable in the eastern Baltic Sea.

Longitude and latitude

Croatia extends over the following geographical latitude (abbreviation Δφ) and geographical longitude (abbreviation Δλ):

Δφ = from 42 ° 24 ‘to 46 ° 32’ north latitude Δλ = from 13 ° 31 ‘to 19 ° 23’ east longitude

You can find detailed information on this subject under Longitude and Latitude.

Time in the country

For Croatia, the following value applies to Central European Time (CET), i.e. the time without summer time. A minus sign means that it is earlier there, a plus sign that it is later than CET:

Δt (CET) = 0 h

Further and detailed explanations of the time can be found under Time zones, time.

The highest point of the sun in Zagreb

Zagreb lies at a northern latitude of around φ = 46 °.

If the sun is at the tropic, i.e. at δ = 23.5 °, summer starts in Zagreb, June 21st. Then, for the highest position of the sun at noon, according to Eq. 1 (see position of the sun):

46 ° = (90 ° – h) + 23.5 °


H = 67.5 °


Biokovo, Dinara

In Dalmatia, Biokovo (1,762 m) by the sea and Dinara (1,831 m) in the hinterland are the highest mountains.

Ucka, Velebit

In the north on the Adriatic coast are the Ucka with a height of 1,396 m and the Velebit with 1,758 m.

Risnjak, Velika Kapela, Pljesivica

Furthermore, Risnjak 1,528 m, Velika Kapela 1,533 m and Pljesivica 1,657 m are to be mentioned as large mountains.

The east and northwest of Croatia are mostly flat.


The rivers of Croatia flow towards the Black Sea or towards the Adriatic Sea.

Mirna, Rasa, Zrmanja, Krka and Cetina

In the coastal area there are only smaller and shorter rivers. The largest of them are called Mirna and Rasa in Istria and Zrmanja, Krka and Cetina in Dalmatia.


In the hinterland there is the longest river in the country, the Save (Sava), with a total length of 945 km (562 km through Croatia). The Sava rises in the Alps in Slovenia, then partially crosses Croatia through Bosnia-Herzegovina and flows into the Danube in Belgrade (Serbia).

Drau, Danube

Another larger river in the hinterland is the Drau (Drava) with a total length of 749 km (through Croatia 305 km) and last but not least the Danube (Dunav) with a total length of around 2,860 km (188 km of which through Croatia).


Vransko Lake

The country does not have many large lakes. The largest lake is the Vransko Lake near Biograd with an area of about 30 km².

Plitvice Lakes, Crveno, Modro Lake, Vransko Lake, Prokljansko Lake.

Other important lakes are the magnificent Plitvice Lakes, Crveno and Modro Lakes near Imotski, Vransko Lake on the island of Cresu and Prokljansko Lake.

Lokvarsko, Bajersko Lake, Trakočansko Lake, Perucko Lake

Well-known artificial lakes are the Lokvarsko and Bajersko Lake in Gorski Kotar, the Trakočansko Lake in the Croatian Zagorje and the Perucko Lake on the Cetina River in Dalmatia.

Kopačevsko Lake

Kopačevsko Lake in Baranja in the northeast is a popular spot for many fish and birds.


The country includes a total of 1,185 islands, of which only around 70 are permanently inhabited: The largest islands are:

  • Cres with an area of 405.7 km²
  • Krk with an area of 405.22 km²
  • Rab with an area of 91 km²
  • Pag with an area of 284.18 km²
  • Brač with an area of 395.44 km²
  • Hvar with an area of 297.37 km²
  • Korčula with an area of 271.46 km²

The islands in detail

  • BrijuniThe Brijuni archipelago consists of fourteen islands that stretch for seven kilometers between Pula and Rovinj. There are paradisiacal flora and fauna on the Brijuni Islands. There are also historical monuments and modern hotels here. The islands are famous for the Stabala crnika, the hundred year old olive groves.
  • KrkThe golden or green Krk is an island connected to the mainland by a bridge. Nature is idyllic on Krk. The small islands of Plavnik, Kormat, Galun, Prvić and Zec offer a very beautiful sight, as you will find nature untouched by human hands. Plavnik also has an airport. The island towns of Baška, Malinska, Omišalj, Njivice, Krk and Punat are almost completely developed for tourism and are popular travel destinations. The latter has the largest marina on the Croatian Adriatic coast.
  • Cres and LosinjThe two islands were once connected until the Romans dug a canal and separated them. The northern part of Cres extends far into the bay of Rijeka and is exposed to the strong storms of the Bora (cold fall winds, especially on the northeast coast of the Adriatic). This can sometimes make the peaks white from snow and ice.

The southern part is protected from the bora, which is why there is a pronounced Mediterranean climate there. The old core of the homonymous town of Cres, which is the center of the island, can be reached through three gates.

Monuments bear witness to the long history. The family coats of arms above the portals of the houses and the chiseled tools report on the status and professions of the people: blacksmith or carpentry tools on the craftsmen’s houses and fish on the doors of the fishermen’s huts.

The climate on Lošinj is very pleasant. Because the island is covered with forest, it is both a recreational and health resort.

  • SusakOf the 1,185 islands and reefs scattered along the Adriatic coast, which consist of sharp stone and a handful of earth here and there, the island of Susak is an exception, as it consists mostly of sand.It gives the wine from Susak a special aroma.
  • RabThe Kvarner island of Rab is one of the most forested islands and has around 300 water sources. In the middle of 1889, the then city council named the town of Rab a seaside resort and health resort. The British King Edward VIII is said to have been the first to bathe unclothed on the island when he spent some time there with the American Wallis Simpson. This is how nudism was supposedly founded on Rab.
  • PagPag is the island of mythical olive groves. Sea salt is also extracted here. Pag is known for its lace (Pag lace). They also praise their delicacies: Pag cheese made from sheep’s milk and olive oil. Part of Pag is reminiscent of a lunar landscape with its peculiar relief.
  • Olib, Silba, Ist, Premuda, Vir, Dugi Otok, Lovrada and PašmanOn the central Adriatic islands of Olib, Silba, Ist, Premuda, Vir, Dugi Otok, Lovrada and Pašman, the visitor will only find untouched nature. Silba is a place of ship owners, captains and fishermen. There are many old captain’s houses there. The sheltered harbors are known to boaters as a safe haven. The island of Ugljan is a “suburb” and garden of the city of Zadar. It got its name because of its richness in olive oil. There are more than 100,000 olive trees on the island. The nearby island of Pašman is also covered with silver-green olive groves. The island of Iž lies between Ugljan and Dugi Otok. It has a lush Mediterranean flora and no car traffic. There are fishermen and farmers, beautiful secluded beaches and tourist facilities. On it is the Telašćica bay, the largest natural harbor of the Adriatic islands and a nature park with a habitat for mouflons. The forest-covered north-western coast has many wide bays and wonderful beaches as well as a 41-meter-high lighthouse, in the mortar of which, in addition to the pebbles from the nearby beach, about 100,000 egg yolks were mixed during the construction in 1949.
  • Kornatic IslandsAccording to legend, this maze of straits and islands was formed from a handful of rocks that God had left over after he created the world. He threw them into the sea, looked at his work, and concluded that there was nothing that could be improved. The famous Georg Bernard Shaw said of this archipelago of the Adriatic and the Mediterranean: “The gods wanted to crown their work and on the last day created the Kornati out of tears, stars and breath” It consists of 140 large and small islands and reefs. There are a number of fishing settlements and houses on the islands that are temporarily inhabited. Because of the abundance of fish, they are often the target of sport fishermen. The Kornati are particularly attractive for boaters, which is why the Žut and Piškera nautical centers were founded.
  • MurterThe islands has an area of only 18 square kilometers. It is connected to the mainland by a twelve-meter-long drawbridge. It is the island of fishermen, olive growers and shipbuilders in the settlements of Hramina, Betina, Tisno and Jezera.
  • PrvićThe island of Prvić, located near Vodice, is an oasis of Mediterranean flora and fauna. The island of Zlarin is located southwest of Šibenik and has been known for its corals and sponges since the 15th century, to which the local museum is dedicated.
  • Obonjan.To the west of Zlarin is the island of Obonjan, known as the “Island of Youth”. Not far from there is the island of Kaprije, named after the Mediterranean plant caper, the buds of which are used as spices. Due to the many bays and beautiful beaches, it is visited by numerous yachts.
  • ŽirjeThis island in the Šibenik archipelago has good fishing grounds. Krapanj is the smallest and lowest but most densely populated island of the archipelago with an area of only 0.36 square kilometers and a height of seven meters.
  • BračOpposite Split, a city of unusual harmony and extraordinary cultural and historical values, with an airport and seaport, lies the island of Brač, the highest and third largest island in the Adriatic. It is covered with thick pine forests, vineyards and olive groves. The famous Brač white stone was used for many important buildings around the world, such as the White House in Washington. There are numerous bays, sandy and pebble beaches on the richly indented coast of Brač. Bol is the largest tourist place in the southern part of the island with beautiful beaches. Zlatni Rat Beach is the only beach that changes shape every day. There are many bathing and vacation spots on Brač, such as: Postire, Milna, Supetar.
  • HvarSouth of Brač is Hvar, the longest island on the Adriatic. The island of vineyards, olive groves and lavender fields. The island has a clear cobalt blue sea, numerous springs and the highest annual number of hours of sunshine. The stone houses along the two coasts of Stari Grad on the island of Hvar, which are connected by several small bridges, form a harmonious unit. In Vrboska there is a fishing museum unique on the Adriatic. Hvar is a pleasant summer and winter health resort because of the mild winter climate and the lush subtropical plants. The small, partly forested Pakleni otoci with mainly nudist pebble and sandy beaches and a seabed favorable for underwater fishing are particularly interesting. They are a well-known meeting place for boaters.
  • ŠoltaOpposite Split lies the small island of Šolta with its sparse vegetation and a steep and richly indented coast. The main port of Maslinica is an anchorage for smaller ships.
  • VisVis is known for the fishermen and sailors. It has a beautiful nature and a diverse tourist offer.
  • BiševoThe island of Biševo has an area of around six square kilometers. There are many caves along the steep coast, of which the “Blue Grotto” (Modra špilja) is the most interesting. It has an entrance above and below the sea. When the water is still, the light refracts so that the objects and people in the cave are bathed in blue color and those in the water shimmer with silver.
  • Svetac, Jabuka, Brusnik and the Palagruža archipelago.The Vis archipelago also includes the islands of Svetac (Sveti Andrija), Jabuka, Brusnik and the Palagruža archipelago. Although “officially” a peninsula, Pelješac as an island is separated from Korcula by a narrow channel. The picturesque towns of Ston and Mali Ston are the most important fortified places of the Dubrovnik Republic after Dubrovnik. The oysters from Mali Ston Bay and the renowned Postup and Dingac wines are well known.
  • KorčulaIt is said that Korčula is the island with the most legends and monuments and, along with Lokrum and Mljet, the most densely wooded Croatian island. At the end of the 13th century, a naval battle between Venice and Genoa was fought near Korčula, in which Marco Polo had also participated on the Venetian side. Marco Polo is believed to have been born on the island of Korčula. In the towns of Korčula, Lumbarda and Vela Luka, the knight game “Moreska” was invented at the end of the 15th century. Famous stonemasons, sailors and shipbuilders also come from the island.
  • LastovoFar out at sea is the island of Lastovo with an area of 50 square kilometers, an indented coastline with pebble and sandy beaches and a few small offshore islands. The houses on Lastovo were built one on top of the other in stages, because every resident had a right to his or her part of the sun, air and view.
  • MljetParallel to the island of Pelješac lies the forest-covered island of Mljet with an area of 100 square kilometers. Because of the old, dense forests of Alpine pines and pines, the karst caves, the two picturesque lakes connected to the sea, the numerous sandy and pebble beaches and the rich fish and lobster grounds, the western part of the island was declared a national park.

Adriatic, Mediterranean


Croatia is located on the Adriatic Sea, which is part of the Mediterranean Sea.

Croatia Population