The Elaphiti Islands or the Elaphites (Croatian: Elafitski otoci or Elafiti) is a small archipelago consisting of several islands stretching northwest of Dubrovnik, in the Adriatic sea. The islands are covered with characteristic Mediterranean evergreen vegetation and attract large numbers of tourists during the summer tourist season due to their beaches and pristine scenery.
The Elaphiti Islands consist of three main islands: Kolocep, Lopud and Šipan.
Kolocep - It is the closest island to Dubrovnik, located 5 km from the Dubrovnik harbour at Gruž. It used to be an important shipbuilding site in the Republic of Ragusa period. It is one of the most indented and the southernmost permanently inhabited Croatian island with a population of 294 inhabitants. It has seven pre-Romanesque churches dating back to the times of the Croatian kings, from the 9th to the 11th century.
Lopud - Second in size and best known for its sandy beaches, it is located between Šipan and Koločep islands. It's well developed in terms of tourism infrastructure. Village of Lopud is center of Island's tourist industry, with it's restaurants, cafes and hotels. The inner part of the island is area where large valley is located so that is where local people grow olives, vine, oranges and lemons. Beside tourism and agriculture, local people are also involved in fishing industry.
Šipan - The farthest and largest island in terms of area (15.8 km2) and population of 436 inhabitants. There are two larger settlements on the island - Sipanska Luka and Sudurad, which are connected by a road that cuts across the fertile Fields of Sipan. During the XV century, many aristocratic Dubrovnik families built summer manors on Sipan. Accordingly, the summer manor of the Sorkocevic family stands out in Sipanska Luka. Today, the vast beaches, the clean sea abundant with fish, the rich vegetation, and the widely renowned Sipan wine, attract a growing number of visitors who want a peaceful holiday.