The first data regarding the settlement, connected the island with the Illiric tribes – Japodians and Liburnians, then with the Greeks when the island was part of the Elektridic or Apsirtidik islands – now known as the Kvarner islands.
Roman traces lead us to the end of the antique period and the first centuries of the new age period.
Christianity appeared very early on the island, so that already in the 5th century A.D. the bishopric had been formed, with its centre in the city of Krk and with the first known bishop, Andrija (680). The Croatian people inhabited the land in clans within the castles, and for that reason, today the island has four different dialects.
At the end of the 12th century from the original clans the famous Krk noblemen, the Frankopan family emerged.
This was the only family within the Adriatic islands to develop its power in the range of European emperors – their origin is from Vrbnik, and they even spread their rule to the continent – to Trsat, Bakar, Kraljevica, Crikvenica, Novi Vinodolski, as well as to Otočac, Brinje etc. so that at the height of their rule the Frankopans owned a territory equal to half of today’s Croatia.
Some of the noblemen from this family were also Croatian Viceroys or banus. The first known Frankopan was Dujam I (1118.) and the last was Fran Krsto who was executed in 1671 by the emperor and king Leopold Habsburg.
The island of Krk fell under Venetian rule in 1480 as the last island on the Adriatic, when the noble Ivan Frankopan was tricked and dragged into Venetian captivity.
After the fall of the Croatian aristocracy – the Frankopans in the 15th century, Krk changed many rulers, from the Venetians, through to the French, the Austro-Hungarians, the Italians, the Germans, the Yugoslavians and finally, after five centuries, the island of Krk finally became an integral part of the Croatian corpus again.
Among the 1185 Croatian islands, only one of them is the golden one, the Insula Aurea – the island of Krk. Located in the centre of the Kvarner bay, it is considered one of the most attractive tourist destinations. Its mild Mediterranean climate, good geographical position and variety of natural and cultural beauties gave it, even in ancient times, the name “golden island”. Its cultural heritage has given it another name – the cradle of Croatian culture, whilst at the beginning of the 20th century it gained the name the “sixth continent”.
The 45th parallel passes through the island, whilst its longest part is 38 km and its widest 20 km long. Its coast is around 190 km long. The closest mainland is only about a hundred metres away and its neighbouring islands are the islands of Cres, Goli and Rab; a few smaller islands also pertain to it (the largest being Plavnik, which has 17 km of coast, and the smaller Školjić with just 400 m of coast); it has an unusual and varied relief, climbing from the north-western part to the south-eastern part – from picturesque gentle coves and lagoons, along fertile fields and dense forests with sub-mediterranean vegetation, to the parts of bare limestone and real mountain landscape. On the island of Krk there are three streams and two lakes.
On the highest mountain top, Obzovi (570 m), visitors may forget that they are actually on an island. Here some very specific phenomena can be found – such as the flora in Krk which includes around 1400 species of land plants, which are almost half of the total in Croatia. Its unique plant the “Barbašova lazarkinja” is one of the world’s rarities and it only grows in the Baška lagoon.
Amongst its fauna, we can count rare species too, bird species, for example, vary from eagles/vultures to the oriental steppe “vrški tić”. To all this complex contrast of natural characteristics we should add a Mediterranean climate – hot summers and mild winters, a cold continental wind that blows from the north-east-the bura and the humid jugo, and a pleasant summer wind, the maestral that blows from the west.
Literally all roads lead to the island of Krk: from the land – over theKrk bridge; from the sea – by boats into the ports or small marinas, and by ferry to the Valbiska harbour, from the air – by plane to Rijeka’s airport which is located close to Omišalj.
The island of Krk is just 30 kilometres away from the city of Rijeka – which is the traffic, business, commercial, university and cultural centre of Kvarner. No matter which road you choose, on your arrival to the island of Krk, you will certainly find that the golden island has been honoured with the uniqueness of variety – and is a connection between present and past, modernity and the antiquated, legend and reality.
Since ancient times it is believed that the destiny of the island of Krk is connected to the number seven: it was inhabited by the Croatian people in the 7th century, it has survived attacks by pirates seven times, the seventh nobleman from the Frankopan family was the last Prince of Krk. Today the island of Krk has seven centres.
Discover our island – uncover its charms and treasures in every season: cruise through its beautiful and varied landscapes, visit its thousand year-old monuments, museums and galleries. Breathe in the feeling of wellbeing whilst walking along the romantic pathways by the sea or along the wild shepherd’s rock paths. Enjoy the magical tastes of Krk cuisine and delightful home-made wine. Take advantage of your stay by enjoying the delights the entire island is offers in the solidity of its rich and varied accommodation, and tourist and catering offer.