A brief history of Croatia

Short recapitulation

The title “A Brief History of Croatia” is maybe misleading, as Croatian history is turbulent and long. Therefore we will try to make a short recapitulation of the recent years that impacted Croatia the most.

Croatia got independence on 25th Jun 1991. However, till that time we have been affected by other cultures, traditions, languages, cuisines, architecture. So, starting from Illyrian and Greek time. Followed by the Romans, after them with the first Croatian tribes that arrived 7ct establishing Duchy of Croatia in 8th-10ct. 

The foundation of today’s Croatia has united Red and White Croatia, which became the Kingdom of Croatia. Therefore, the most powerful kingdom in the Balkans. This is why we have red and white squares, our national symbols.

Jeep safari road | Plitvice Outdoor Croatia


Following In 12ct. The Croatian crown passed and entered a personal union with Hungary sold the whole of Dalmatia to Venice in 1409. The period saw an increasing threat of Ottoman conquest so Hungarian Ladislaus of Naples sold Dalmatia and Istria to the Republic of Venice for control of coastal areas.

Brief history?

The Venetians gained control over most of Dalmatia by 1428. With exception of the city-state of Dubrovnik which became independent. The rule of Venice on most of Dalmatia will last nearly four centuries (c. 1420 – 1797).

While the Turkish incursion into Europe started, Croatia once again became a border country. Therefore ruled under Habsburg Monarchy till the first World War 1918.

As the Ottoman Empire was a state that controlled much of Southeastern Europe, Western Asia, and Northern Africa. Between the 14th and early 20th centuries. But they never controlled the Dubrovnik Republic. Which were one of the biggest Venetians’ revels. Since it was one of the most influential republics in World history.

Air Base Jeep Safari | Brief history of Croatia | Plitvice Outdoor Croatia

Between two World Wars 

Between two World Wars Croatia became part of the Yugoslavian Kingdom. Which was actually the Kingdom of the Serbs, Croats and Slovenes formed from territories of the former Austro-Hungarian Empire.  However, Istria and a small part of Dalmatia under the secret agreement are then given to Italians.

During WW2 Croatia is hungry for independence. So we had radical patriots on one side wanting to join the Axis alliance and get an independent country and radical communists on the other side led by Tito.

After WW2 the Allies started establishing borders around the world. Especially under the control of Axis allies and the Federal People’s Republic of Yugoslavia.  Therefore, the communist party is established in 1946. Six countries formed Yugoslavia: Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, and Macedonia. Though Macedonia was under Soviet and had deferred to Stalin. Until Tito broke decisively with Stalin on other issues, making Yugoslavia an independent communist state from 1948.

The arms industry was dominant in the Yugoslav economy. With annual exports of $3 billion, it was twice as large as the second-largest industry, tourism. So even today we have remarkable military constructions down the sea coast and islands, on the mountains, inside the mountains, cities, villages.

Plesivica Jeep Safari sunset | Plitvice Outdoor Croatia

Croatia independency

The trigger for our independence was the collapse of the Soviet Union and getting out of the communist political system. Many of our citizens during communist rule ended up in jail only for singing traditional Croatian songs. Those times Berlin Wall, a symbol of communism, fall in 1989 and our politicians brought the idea of getting out of Yugoslavia. With the first democratic elections, establishing parliament, president, constitution, flag, borders but other Serbian politicians as Slobodan Milošević had other plans for Yugoslavia and Serbs. Supporting Serbs to established Serbian Autonomous Oblast of Krajina. That war from 1991-1995 defined Croatia as a dependent country. Therefore, lots of things change between neighboring countries from ex-Yugoslavia, especially our joining to European Union.

Jeep Safari Plesivica | Plitvice Outdoor Croatia

Finally, today a small country with 4,1 million citizens enjoying a perfect Mediterranean, Mountain, and Continental climate, amazing history to tell, and nature to present. Croatia is a country with more than 1200 islands, its home to 8 National Parks, 12 Nature Parks, 1000 waterfalls, sea, mountains, lakes, ancient cities, all of which stretched 700 km South to North and 500 km East to West.

Join us and we will show you Croatia from our point of view. The local point of view!


Leave a Reply