Krk Island is the largest Croatian island and also one of the most populated. Connected to the mainland by a bridge, Krk is easily accessible and home to a large number of tourist resorts, hotels, campgrounds, and other facilities. Its accessibility, along with good beaches and resorts, attracts many visitors from the region and other areas of Europe. Krk also contains the main airport for the city of Rijeka, in Omisalj. The main towns on the island of Krk are Krk town, Punata, Baska, Omisalj, Kosljun, and Vrbnik. Baska is the most popular resort town on the island due to the beautiful beach.Krk Island has long been inhabited and still shows remains from the Roman period.
Frankopan Castle, Kraljevica, Croatia
Kraljevica is located on the mainland where the bridge joins the island of Krk to mainland Croatia, on the Vino dol Channel. The town is a popular tourist destination, as it has been for the past century. Hotels and villas abound in Kraljevica. The town sprung up around a 16th Century castle in the old town of Kraljevica known as Stari Grad. One of the main attractions in the new town (Novi Grad) is the Renaissance style Frankopan Castle, built in the 17th Century. It is also referred to as the Nova Kraljevica Castle. Renovations and alterations in the 18th Century saw the castle transformed into a beautiful residence. One of Kraljevica's largest events is called Summer in Frankopan, which is a cultural event with entertainment held at the Frankopan Castle.
South of Kraljevica is the resort town of Crikvenica. The town's most famous monument is now the Hotel Kastel. This building was once a castle built in the early 15th Century by Nikola Frankopan. It later became the property of the Pauline order and was converted into a monastery and school. Following the departure of the Pualines the monastery was turned into the Hotel Kastel in the late 1800s, which it remains today.Visitors come to Crikvenica to enjoy the pebble beach and mild climate although the town has deteriorated over the past number of years. It is often overlooked now for some of the more popular resorts towns along this stretch of coast and on Krk.
Kosljun, Punat, Croatia
The main attraction associated with visiting the town of Punat is to see the nearby islet of Kosljun. Many people come to Punat just to do a day trip to Kosljun. On this tiny islet of Kosljun is a 15th Century Franciscan Monastery (Franjevacki Samostan). Benedictine monks inhabited Kosljun as early as the 11th Century. The Franciscans moved in during the 15th Century and built the monastery. On display in the monastery are some religious paintings, rare books, and a small ethnographic collection featuring, among other items, a unique collection of women's scarves from around Krk.In the 17th to 19th Centuries the Kosljun Lending House (Kosljunska Posujilnica) was established on the island. Today the Krk Summer Festival is held in the monastery's courtyard with classical concerts.
Krk Town, Croatia
Krk Town, on the island of Krk, is the main administrative center. The town was established even before the Romans settled in the area but there is little left to see from ancient times. Outside of the old town is where visitors will find most of the hotels and resorts.Some of the main attractions in the town of Krk are the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Assumption (Katedrala Uznesenja), which dates to between the 13th and 16th Centuries, the 12th Century Romanesque Church of St Quirinus (Crkva Sv Kvirina), the fortified castle (kastel) with three remaining gates and surrounding wall, and the Franciscan Monastery. The Church of St Quirinus also houses the treasury and the Diocesan Museum.
The town of Omisalj is at the north end of Krk Island, close to where the bridge joins the mainland. Omisalj is where the Rijeka airport is located, although it only operates during the summer months. Most people only consider Omisalj as a transit point but the town does have some cultural attractions, as well as Omisaljski Bay, a popular place for water sports. On the town's central square visitors will find the Venetian loggia which dates to the 17th Century, the 13th Century Romanesque Church of St Mary, and the Church of St Helen. Nearby to Omisalj is Fulfinum, with ruins of an ancient Roman settlement.
The town of Vrbnik is on the eastern side of Krk Island and less visited by tourists than the resort towns on the other side of the island. Vrbnik sits high upon a cliff wall about 50m / 165ft above the ocean. Winding, steep streets lead through this densely packed medieval town. The surrounding area is open and home to orchards. Vrbnik was fortified in the Middle Ages and some of the original walls still stand. Below the town is the harbor and town beach.Vrbnik is position such that it is hit by the bura winds, making it a cold winter destination.