A map of Croatia For centuries, different European powers have fought for control of Croatia's long Adriatic coastline. Today, this scenic region is one of the most visited in Europe, famous for its beautiful, white, sandy beaches. Just offshore the rugged coast lie thousands of islands. Inland, a mountain range, the Dinaric Alps, rises steeply to more than 1800 metres (6000 ft). Over time, erosion has carved deep caves in the limestone rock. Croatia’s interior consists of lush plains and low hills. The southern tip around Dubrovnik is separated from the rest of the country by a tiny strip of Bosnian land. Croatia has a warm, continental climate: winters are cool, while summers are hot and sunny, especially along the coast.
Unlike the other former Yugoslav territories, which generally have mixed populations, Croatia's population is mainly made up of ethnic Croats. Many non-Croats were forced to leave the country during World War II (1939–45). When the Yugoslav War broke out in the early 1990s, thousands of Serbs fled Croatia. Today, around 90% of the country’s people are Croat, Catholic and speak Croatian, a variety of Serbo-Croat.
Croatia has over a thousand islands and islets. Just 48 of them are inhabited all year round.
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