For 5 days and 5 nights, Croatia's Zrće Beach transforms into a techno holiday paradise, otherwise known as Sonus Festival. With parties in world famous clubs, boat party raves and gatherings on the beach, there is so much to see, plenty to do and a hell of lot of parties to attend, so here is a run down of the important things to know during your trip.
So far for the 2015 event, the likes of Chris Liebing, Dixon, Joseph Capriati, Loco Dice, Luciano, Pan-Pot, Ricardo Villalobos, Richie Hawtin and Sven Väth have been confirmed with more announcements due. You can view the full line-up so far here.
There are several airports you can land and transfer from but we'd recommend Zadar, Zagreb or Split as the closest and most popular choices.
For all of these Festicket offer transfers to and from with the airport, with the Zadar transfer taking 2 hours, the Split transfer taking 4 hours and the Zagreb transfer taking 5 hours.
All the transfers follow a route that will drop you off outside, or near walking distance to your accommodation. To get to and from your accommodation to Zrće Beach, there will also be separate shuttle services which you can buy tickets for as part of an add-on.
GETTING AROUND NOVALJA & ZRĆE BEACH
Described by many as "The Croatian Ibiza", Novalja city itself is actually quite small, but it is the nearby Zrće beach which has earned this reputation.
With all-hour night clubs to enjoy at night, and long white pebble beaches to lounge on during the day, Zrće has also been awarded a blue flag meaning the water and facilities are clean, and there are lifeguards on duty all day.
Aside from water-sports and beach bears, there also plenty of small secluded sandy coves and beaches nearby if you wish to temporarily escape the exciting hustle and bustle of the area.
Roughly 1 mile from the centre of Novalja, some choose to enjoy the sun-soaked sights of the long walk, while others enjoy meeting fellow partygoers on the shuttle buses down.
To get to and from your accommodation to Zrce Beach, there will also be shuttle services which you can buy as an add-on to your Festicket package.
A taxi will cost you between £3 - £4 for a 5 minute drive, and recommended companies include Taxi City (00385 99 806 6665), Paprika Taxi Service (00385 917530549) and Taxi Novalja (00385 0 98 28 28 72).
AREAS TO STAY IN
Festicket has accommodation available in the following areas:
- Barbati Area: a little group of villages with a beautiful bay view.
- Stara Novalja Bay: strecthed along pebbled beach with small cafes dotted long the road, this area is seen as a quiet "retreat from the action" of Sonus
- Gajac: this area has a lot more shops, bars and restaurants then the other locations.
- Novalja: apartments in this location are either in the thick of the city or very close
You can browse and compare our full range of accommodation here.
THE NIGHTCLUBS OF ZRCE BEACH
AQUARIUS - Since 1992 this nightclub has created parties which have set a global standard for nightclubs in summer island locations, mixing a sense of luxury with a casual vibe. During the day this serves as a trendy beach bar and restaurant, whereas at night this becomes a hotspot for Croatian clubbing. There is also a popular VIP zone with a garden and a gallery stage
CLUB KALYPSO - Inviting you to "Feel The Essence Of Summer", Kalypso Beach Club was the first Croatian club to be established in 1987. With years of experience, this open air location has been host to many of Croatia's most popular festivals and live music events. You can dance in or near it's swimming pools or relax with cocktails in the romantic VIP area or the open Lounge section.
PAPAYA - Consistently making it into DJ Mag's best nightclubs list, this is another one of Croatia's open air beauties where electronic sounds fill the air against a backdrop of the Velebit mountains, with sounds of the Adriatic coast nearby. With a capacity of 4,500 you can go hard or you can go home!
THE BOAT PARTIES
Setting sail from Zrce Beach and sailing along the blue waters of the Adriatic Sea, the boat parties often start later in the day, giving you the majestic sites of sunsets over Croatia's pretty coast.
It's important to remember the the boat parties in 2014 ran from 5pm - 9pm, so you may only be able to catch the first hour of the 3pm - 9pm nightclub sets, meaning after 9pm you will have a 2 hour break until the late night club sets start at 11pm.
If you do choose to go to a boat party over an afternoon-evening club set, the atmosphere on board the ship, and the freedom of partying surrounded by crisp blue waters will more than make up for who you may miss.
THE PERKS OF VIP:
If you want to have a proper premium holiday experience during your stay, you might want to consider getting a VIP ticket for the following perks
- VIP area access in clubs Papaya & Aquarius
- Table service at reserved spaces
- Special VIP entrances and toilette use
- VIP wristband for the whole event
To find out more about Sonus Festival, check out our guide here, and to experience some of the vibe of the festival, check out the 2014 aftermovie below: