Susak, the Croatian island with sandy beaches

They say that there are no sandy beaches in Croatia and they are wrong! Croatian coast is not only gravel and stones, but there are also beaches with fine sand and shallow sea. You just need to know where to look for them. This time I would like to tell you about a small Croatian island that we discovered during our May stay in the Kvarner area. This island is called Susak and is made of sand, which makes it unique and one of its kind. There is no other island like this not only in Croatia but also all over the Adriatic Sea.

Susak, a Croatian island with sandy beaches - from travel blog:

A trip to the island of Susak in Kvarner, Croatia

Have you ever heard about the island of Susak in Croatia? I must admit that before we went to the Kvarner Bay area in northern Croatia, we did not know that such an island exists at all. We also had no idea that there are beaches in Croatia with such fine white sand and shallow sea. Usually, we were looking for small pebble beaches hidden in coves like the secret beaches of Hvar about which I already wrote on this blog.

One evening we went to the Čikat Bay in Mali Lošinj to look at the sunset. It was the first time I saw the island of Susak on the horizon. Suddenly, I felt curious about what is on this island, what is its name and how to get there. I knew right away that I had to go there and see how it is.

It turned out that a catamaran from the port of Mali Lošinj runs every day to the island of Susak, so we decided to try to get there. The next day a very strong wind was blowing and the lady who sold us the tickets said that perhaps we would not be able to stop on the island. However, we decided to take a chance and succeeded, despite the large waves and strong wind, we finally got to Susak.

A view on Donje Selo and Spiaza Beach, Susak Island, Croatia - from travel blog:

Susak, a Croatian island made of sand

I have already written that the island of Susak is unique and one of a kind. That’s what even sailors say, who have crossed the entire Adriatic Sea and have seen a lot. What makes Susak Island so unusual? It is not only that there are beautiful sandy beaches that are rare in Croatia. It is also about the appearance of the island and its genesis.

Susak is a small island located in the Kvarner Bay, about 7,4 km southwest from the island of Lošinj. It’s geologically different from the other Adriatic islands in that it is mostly made of sand which ancient winds deposited onto the limestone plate. A long time ago people planted reeds around their fields. In search of the water, its roots penetrated deep into the soil and preserve it from erosion. So actually thanks to farmers and their crops, the island exists to this day.

In Italian, Susak is called Sansego. What’s interesting, the name comes from the Greek word Sansegus which literally means “oregano”. As you can guess, on the island grows a lot of this aromatic herb. Another interesting fact is there are practically no trees on the island. The area is mainly covered with reeds and vines.

There is only one village on Susak which consists of two parts: the lower and the upper one. The island is car-free, there are no roads on it and the only means of transport are wheelbarrows. If you like such places, be sure to read also about Gothenburg Archipelago, a hidden gem in Sweden.
Vineyards on the Susak Island, Croatia - from travel blog:

A way to the Bok Beach, Susak Island, Croatia - from travel blog:

Bok, Susak Island – a beautiful beach with white sand and shallow sea

There are many beautiful beaches on the island of Susak and each one is unique. From the side of the island of Lošinj, there are sandy beaches with shallow sea, and from the side of the open sea, there are stony beaches with crystal clear water. Unfortunately, we did not have much time to explore, because the catamaran sailed back in a few hours, so we took a little walk around the village and went to Bok Beach.

We walked for over half an hour along a narrow path around which high reeds grew. After some time, the vineyards began to appear and finally, we reached the Bok Beach, which was completely empty.

There was no one besides us. The sea had a wonderful blue color, and only the sound of waves could be heard. For a moment, I felt like I was in paradise. It was so peaceful and beautiful. There are fewer and fewer places like this where you can enjoy nature and feel part of it. I am glad that I was able to discover Bok in Susak, which is one of the prettiest beaches in Croatia that I have seen.

Bok, Susak - a beautiful sandy beach in Croatia - from travel blog:

Sandy beach and a shallow sea in Croatia, Bok Beach, Susak - from travel blog:

A sandy beach Bok on the island of Susak, Croatia - from travel blog:

A shallow sea on the Croatian island of Susak, Kvarner Bay - from travel blog:

Susak Island, Croatia – a place one of a kind

Currently, the island of Susak has a population of about 150 people. There used to be much more inhabitants here, but most of them emigrated to the USA. Susak’s history is very interesting and it is worth reading more about this island.

If you ever go there, be sure to visit the Emigrant’s Club where you can watch old photos and have a drink at a good price. It is a real, authentic place with an atmosphere that you will not feel in tourist resorts. It is also worth to try the local wine which is unique and has a special flavor.

What’s more, and this is another interesting fact about the island of Susak, the inhabitants have their own dialect, which is not understandable even for Croats. This dialect, as well as specific customs and colorful costumes, has been preserved due to the isolation of the island.

A narrow street on the island of Susak, Croatia - from travel blog:
Moped with an American license plate, Susak Island, Croatia - from travel blog:
The architecture of Susak Island, Croatia - from travel blog:

How to get to the island of Susak and where to stay?

The island of Susak can only be reached by sea. There runs a passenger catamaran from the cities of Mali Lošinj, Rijeka, Pula, Zadar, Cres or Martinšćica. There are also connections between the island of Susak and other archipelago islands like Unije, Ilovik, Vele Srakane, Silba.

We got to the island of Susak by catamaran from Mali Lošinj served by Jadrolinija. The trip lasted about 35 minutes and in May the ticket cost 18 HRK (about 2.50 euro) per person. The trip from Rijeka, Pula or Zadar to the island of Susak takes about 3 hours. Current ticket prices and timetables are available on the Jadrolinija or Catamaran line websites. These are foot-passenger only ferries, so cars are not allowed.

A vineyard on the island of Susak, Kvarner, Croatia - from travel blog:

When it comes to accommodation, there are no large hotels on the island of Susak, but you can rent a room through services such as Booking, Airbnb etc. If you want you can check the rooms available on the island of Susak on the map below. It’s best to book your accommodation in advance because the choice is limited.

As you can see, the island of Susak, although small, is very interesting and one of a kind. It is worth going there if you are looking for beautiful nature and authentic places that are off the tourist radar. We definitely want to come to the island once again and spend a few days on it to get to know this place better and feel its atmosphere.

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Susak, a Croatian island with sandy beaches - from travel blog:

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  33 comments for “Susak, the Croatian island with sandy beaches

  1. June 7, 2018 at 4:00 pm

    Wow I am fascinated by this untouched island! The beaches look beautiful and the town and fields are charming. What a perfect hideaway!

    • June 11, 2018 at 2:50 pm

      I was also very charmed by this place. I would love to go to the island of Susak one more time and also visit other small islands of the Losinj archipelago like Unije, Ilovik etc.

  2. June 7, 2018 at 5:22 pm

    What a charming island. I am a total island freak and would love to spend a few days here. Are there any options to stay here? Perhaps a homestay with the villagers?

    • June 11, 2018 at 2:55 pm

      Good question, I added information about accommodation to the blog post. From what I know, it is possible to book accommodation on the island through services such as Booking. There is also one small hotel and hostel.

  3. June 7, 2018 at 6:16 pm

    The beach looks spectacular. Wow, the sand from ancient time deposited on limestone plate reminds me of geographical weathering and stuff. It is always great to know all these about every new place. Loved every bit of Susak island from your blogpost. It is in my list now when I head to Croatia.

    • June 11, 2018 at 2:58 pm

      Susak Island was created in a very interesting way and best of all if it were not for people who started to deal with agriculture, probably this place would not exist anymore. At least it would not be like today. Fascinating how sometimes a small factor is able to change everything.

  4. June 7, 2018 at 8:39 pm

    This island looks so nice and your photos are beautiful. I love car-free places and Susak seems a very relaxing destination.

    • June 11, 2018 at 3:18 pm

      I also like car-free places very much. You can relax there from the hustle and bustle of the city. I would gladly visit other such islands.

  5. June 8, 2018 at 1:01 am

    Holy cow that beach looks amazing! How is the water temperature? Also, I had no idea that people from Croatia were called “Croats”!!

    • June 11, 2018 at 3:23 pm

      I do not know how it is now, but I was at Susak in early May and the water was 18 degrees. The Croats were surprised that we were bathing in such an icy sea, but in Poland where we come from, the Baltic Sea has so much during the warmest summer months. For us, the water was refreshing, but not cold. In the summer, the Adriatic Sea is over 25 degrees.

  6. June 8, 2018 at 1:20 am

    I had never heard of this island before reading your post. Susak looks like it’s from a postcard, or from a Hollywood movie. I had always thought from what I read that Croatia had rocky beaches. Very informative post, are there hotels on this island?

    • June 11, 2018 at 3:25 pm

      I saw one small hotel and hostel, there are also private rooms and apartments for rent 🙂

  7. June 8, 2018 at 4:52 am

    The sand is so soft and white and the shallow sea makes for a vast beach. I just love the blue shutter windows in the town. It seems quite empty…so pretty.

    • June 11, 2018 at 3:27 pm

      It is true, this beach is wonderful. We will definitely return there once when we have children, because it’s a perfect place for a family vacation.

  8. June 8, 2018 at 7:05 am

    Croatia has been on my list since long anyway and the more I read and discover about it, the sooner I wanna visit. This Susak Island looks beautiful, I mean the pictures show how clean the beach is and doesn’t look too populated also.

    • June 11, 2018 at 3:28 pm

      That’s right, the beach is very calm. Most of the time we were alone there.

  9. June 9, 2018 at 5:09 am

    Wow, this place has such a nice countryside vibe to it. I would love to see more pictures of the town. Those buildings look exquisite.

    • June 11, 2018 at 3:30 pm

      Many houses, unfortunately, deteriorate, because they were abandoned by residents who emigrated to the USA. We spent most of our time on this beautiful beach, so I have only a few photos of the village.

  10. June 9, 2018 at 1:13 pm

    One of my favorite places in Croatia (and there are many of them). Just can’t get enough of that country, I hope that you had a great time!

    • June 11, 2018 at 3:32 pm

      Have you ever been on the island of Susak too? Would you recommend me more places as beautiful as this?

  11. June 9, 2018 at 11:45 pm

    This looks so calm and relaxing. Exactly the place I would love to drop by for a couple of days, after carrying my backpack to the mountains. I I was considering visiting Croatia, and now I have one more reason.

    • June 11, 2018 at 3:33 pm

      It’s worth visiting Croatia, especially places that are not very popular with tourists yet. Jump into the sea after hiking in the mountains … Yes, this is something wonderful 🙂

  12. June 10, 2018 at 12:38 pm

    Very pretty beach! We wouldn’t mind living here, with the beach and a charming, walkable town right in our own backyard. How’s the water temperature there?

    • June 11, 2018 at 3:35 pm

      In May, the sea was 18 degrees, but in holiday months the water is much warmer and has over 25 degrees.

  13. YUKTI Agrawal
    June 12, 2018 at 3:45 pm

    I love sandy beaches and therefore Susak looks perfect for me. Croatia is on my wishlist since long and therefore I am adding sandy Susak with beautiful nature in my list too.

    • November 23, 2018 at 12:59 pm

      It’s great, Susak island is completely different than the rest of Croatia and it’s worth seeing.

  14. June 13, 2018 at 6:19 pm

    I’ve never heard about Susak but it seems like an exceptional island which is a perfect summer destination. I love sandy beaches and this island would be my perfect getaway place. Is it easy to find good accommodation there?

    • November 23, 2018 at 1:01 pm

      Few people have heard about the island of Susak, this is not a popular place. I was in Susak only for a one-day trip, but there are quite a lot of apatites to rent.