The Elaphiti Islands is a small archipelago consisting of several islands stretching northwest of Dubrovnik, in the Adriatic sea. The name comes from a Greek word for a deer – “elaphos”, who used to inhabithttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Archipelago the islands in large numbers. The archipelago has a total land area of around 30 square kilometres and is covered with characteristic Mediterranean evergreen vegetation. Only the three main Islands are permanently inhabited – Koločep, Lopud and Šipan.They are connected with the mainland via daily ferry lines operated out of Dubrovnik. During the summer season, they attract large numbers of tourists due to their famous sandy beaches and pristine scenery.
Šipan is the farthest and largest island in terms of area (15.8 km2) and population of 436 inhabitants. It also has two settlements, Šipanska luka and Suđurađ, both served by Jadrolinija ferry lines.
Lopud, also known as the “Island in the middle” due ti its location between Šipan and Koločep, is well developed in terms of tourism infrastructure and most known for its sandy beaches, cypress and pine parks and citrus gardens. Today on Lopud you can see numerous remains of early-medieval churches, summer manors and fortifications.
Koločep is the closest Island to Dubrovnik, located 5 kilometres (3 miles) from Dubrovnik Gruž harbor. 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.