Croatia is located between South-Central Europe
and Middle Europe. Its shape resembles that of a crescent or a horseshoe,
which flanks its neighbours Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Montenegro.
To the north lie Slovenia and Hungary; Italy lies across the Adriatic
Sea. Its mainland territory is split in two non-contiguous parts by
the short coastline of Bosnia and Herzegovina around Neum.
Its terrain is diverse, including:
* plains, lakes and rolling hills in the continental
north and northeast (Central Croatia and Slavonia, part of the Pannonian
* densely wooded mountains in Lika and Gorski Kotar, part of the Dinaric
* rocky coastlines on the Adriatic Sea (Istria, Northern Seacoast and
Phytogeographically, Croatia belongs to the Boreal
Kingdom and is shared between the Central European and Illyrian provinces
of the Circumboreal Region and the Adriatic province of the Mediterranean
Region. According to the WWF, the territory of Croatia can be subdivided
into three ecoregions: the Pannonian mixed forests, Dinaric Mountains
mixed forests and Illyrian deciduous forests.
The country is famous for its many national parks.
Croatia has a mixture of climates. In the north and east it is continental,
Mediterranean along the coast and a semi-highland and highland climate
in the south-central region. Istra has a temperate climate, while the
Palagruza archipelago is home to a subtropical climate.
Insular Croatia consists of over one thousand
islands varying in size. The largest islands in Croatia are Cres and
Krk which are located in the Adriatic Sea. The Danube, Europe's second
longest river, runs through the city of Vukovar. Dinara, the eponym
of the Dinaric Alps, is the highest peak of Croatia at 1,831 metres
(6,007 ft) above sea level.
Karst topography makes up more than 50% of Croatia
and is especially obvious in the area south of Karlovac. There are 49
caves deeper than 250 m (820.21 ft) in Croatia, 14 of them are deeper
than 500 m (1,640.42 ft) and three deeper than 1,000 m (3,280.84 ft)
(the Lukina jama-Trojama, Slovacka jama and Velebita cave systems).
The deepest Croatian pits are mostly found in two regions – Mt.
Velebit and Mt. Biokovo.