Cres is the largest Croatian island and stretches from cape Jablanica in the north to cape Suha in the south. This island of lush vegetation, diverse flora and fauna was once connected to the nearby island of Lošinj, but a channel was dug between the two islands in Roman times to shorten the journey by boat. Today, Lošinj and Cres are connected again by a bridge over this channel. The island of Cres has been inhabited since the Neolithic and the oldest known inhabitants of the island were the Liburnians. One of the oldest settlements on Cres is the fairy-tale village Lubenice located on a 378 m high cliff above the sea. The village is enclosed by walls on its eastern side and therefore almost seems unreal, which is why one travel writer even called it "the sleepy town of Sleeping Beauty". A narrow path leads from the steep cliff to the gentle bay of Sv. Ivan (St. John) and its beach that is considered one of the most beautiful beaches on Cres. The German magazine Bild even ranked it among the 40 most beautiful beaches in the world at one time.
Today, island Cres has everything you can wish for an idyllic summer vacation as it succeeded in preserving the beauty of its wilderness. Discover the many secluded coves and beaches or enjoy the amenities of the tourist resorts in Cres, Osor, Valun and Martinšćica, where a variety of facilities and comfortable accommodation in apartments, villas and holiday homes await you. The uniqueness of Cres lies precisely in its untouched nature. Parts of the island’s steep and inaccessible east coast are the nesting grounds of several dozen pairs of griffon vultures, the very rare and almost extinct species, whose only closest relative lives in South Africa. With the aim to prevent their extinction, an ornithological reserve has been established in Beli.
Cres is also interesting because of its diverse climate, and thus its vegetation. The island’s northern part, where the wind blows from the Istrian mountains, is covered by resistant trees such as beech and common oak, while vineyards, olive groves and maquis predominate in the southern and much drier and warmer part of the island. In this area the specialties are sheep's cheese, dried ham and fish caught at dawn that are eaten for pleasure. In the central part of the island lies the spacious Vrana Lake, which supplies Cres and nearby Mali Lošinj with water. The lake is a crypto depression because the lake’s bottom is 47m below sea level and the surface about 13m above sea level. An interesting fact about the lake is that it is inhabited by river fish, such as carps, pikes and eels. The southernmost part of the island of Cres is an oasis of untouched nature, lush pine forests and macchia, aromatic herbs and flowering meadows that blend with white pebble beaches and turquoise blue sea. On the way to Punta Križa you can see abandoned pastoral settlements and many small churches and chapels that bear testimony to life in this area in past times. In the magnificent nature of Punta Križa, you might encounter a herd of fallow deer with a little luck or be greeted by a flock of dolphins in the sea. The island of Cres is a great challenge for all true lovers of wild and untouched nature.