This little Balkan country empowers a unique mix of central European and Mediterranean cultures, beautiful coastline, and charming cities. If you’re a nature lover, this is the perfect place to explore amazing beaches and national parks together with your host family.

Teenagers in Croatia will enjoy spending time with you after school, and hanging out at the mall, in cafes, having picnics, and going out dancing. Don’t forget to check out some of the local street festivals and live theater shows in the springtime. Top sports: soccer, basketball and water polo.

Host Family & Community

Your host family can live anywhere from the rural area of Slavonija, to cities like Zagreb, or the coastal regions. No matter where you live, your family will expect you to behave responsibly and maturely: Help with household chores, use public transportation to get to school, and help prepare meals.


Many schools work in two shifts, so half the students go to school in the morning (8 am to 2 pm) and the other half go in the afternoon (2 pm to 8 pm). There are usually six or seven periods per day and schools typically offer additional activities like theater, choir, and sports.


The official language is Croatian, and other languages you can hear here include Czech, Hungarian, Italian, Serbian and Slovakian. For exchange students, having a basic knowledge of English will be helpful. AFS will organize language courses in the first few months and provide you with CDs and books to learn the language on your own.


Food in Croatia varies by region, from seafood to meat-based cuisine. A cheese pastry called strukli is very popular and famous inland, and bread is usually eaten with every meal. Even though Croatians tend to eat a lot of meat, they also enjoy fresh vegetables from local markets. The most important meal of the day is lunch, which you’ll eat around 2 pm – on weekends, this will be the key family time.

Let AFS guide your intercultural adventure

Year Exchange PROGRAM

Program Date: August 31, 2018 – June 29, 2019
Birth Date Range: August 31, 2000 – August 31, 2002

You could be placed anywhere in Croatia, from the rural area of Slavonica, to cities like Zagreb, or the coastal region of Dalmatia. In most Croatian families both parents work full-time so you should prepare to be a bit independent. You might be expected to clean up after yourself, use public transportation to get to school, and help prepare meals. Even though most modern Croatian families are very busy, they really value being able to spend time together. It’s also very common for extended family to come together regularly. Croatians love being outdoors and often go camping on the weekends or during vacation.

Program dates may vary and are meant to help with general scheduling only.
All programs, prices, and travel dates are subject to change without notice.
Applications are accepted on a rolling basis and programs are filled first-come, first-serve.

Apply Now!