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Simon Calder's Holiday Helpdesk: Should we take the local currency, euros or both to Croatia?

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We are travelling to Croatia in August following EU accession on 1 July. Would you suggest that we take the local currency (kuna), euros or both? We will be flying into Split and then taking the ferry to Hvar. Also, can you recommend any secret places on Hvar?

Chris Henry

A  As Croatia takes its first steps as a paid-up member of the EU – nothing significant will change for the British holidaymaker to the beautiful Dalmatian coast and islands, or to the lightly explored but fascinating interior.

The currency is going to remain the kuna, which in practice has been pretty tightly tied to the euro at a value of seven or eight kuna to €1, meaning eight or nine kuna to £1. So you could take some euros if you have a few spare, but personally I would take sterling in cash and change it there.

Prices, in my view, are already pretty high in Croatia compared with destinations such as Greece, and I can’t see them rising significantly as a result of EU membership; the German, Austrian and Slovenian clientele on which Croatia’s tourist industry largely depends would not tolerate sharp increases.

I’m afraid I haven’t yet been to Hvar, so I can’t give you any secrets on the island – but I can strongly recommend that you spend a couple of days in the remarkable city of Split, with Diocletian’s palace at its heart. See bit.ly/Split48 for our latest 48 Hours in the city.

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