Scorpions in Croatia: They’re Real and We Had One in Our Home!

One of the nice things about travel – although sometimes frustrating – is that you should always expect the unexpected.

This was the case during our first visit to Croatia where we had a completely WTF moment when we found a little bug in a room… one we didn’t expect to see.

Yes, as the title subtly suggests, we did find a scorpion in our room, during our tour around Croatia as we love Croatian culture and the country as a whole.

In our case, it happened while in Pula – our first stop in Croatia, out of three, so you can imagine how careful we were afterwards.

It wasn’t funny at all – on the contrary. (Although now, looking back and reminding how everything happened, the whole thing does seem a bit funny).

Here’s the “monster” scorpion we had in our room in Croatia (photos taken with an old phone… hence the low quality):

You can still see the needle on its tail – that surely looks painful!

So… how did we end up with a scorpion in our room?

As I said, we had just arrived in Croatia and we were exploring our charming AirBnb in Pula, when I decided to move the sofa next to one of the beds, to make sure that our son doesn’t fall off the bed during the night (he does have this habit).

When I moved the couch, I saw this little bug-like thing there. It wasn’t even moving, so I initially thought it was dead.

“It’s a scorpion,” I joked when my wife asked me what’s that strange bug – I had only seen scorpions before in cartoons and movies (OK, maybe museums too), but I was sure there can’t be a scorpion in our room in Croatia, hiding under the bed.

But I had to investigate and find what kind of bug we were dealing with. Imagine my complete surprise when I saw that it was actually a real scorpion.

It’s true, it was maybe a bit larger than a regular cockroach, but a scorpion nevertheless. You can check out the “beast” below, after being put out of its misery by my boot:

It was small – maybe 2 centimeters long, but looked mean!

We later found out that they’re actually a protected species in the country and that I should’ve spared his life. This was the last thing I was considering back then, and my boot seemed like the best approach. Sorry, little fellow!

But, apparently, scorpions in Croatia are not as uncommon as you might think (or as I did). Who knew?

Are scorpions in Croatia dangerous?

Next day, we met our nice host in the common yard and told her about the scorpion and she didn’t seem worried at all.

It was actually funny when we told her about this: she spoke minimal English (and we spoke no Croatian), but she made a gesture with her hand like “eh, that’s not a big deal”.

She did understand, however, that the Croatian scorpion had stung our son, so she brought some pesticide of sorts that we were instructed to just scatter around the room. Not a big deal!

I did a bit of research afterwards and apparently scorpions in Croatia are not that uncommon – on the contrary! They are also not dangerous – as in they are not lethal. But if they sting you, it will be very, very painful.

Despite all this, I have to admit that I didn’t sleep well in that house afterwards, dreaming about armies of scorpions crawling under the door into my bed looking for revenge for their fallen comrade…

It didn’t happen though and that was the only scorpion we’ve ever seen in Croatia. Hopefully it will be an experience that we’ll never repeat, no matter where we go next.

Wrapping up

We were staying in this beautiful house that had an amazingly beautiful garden with lots of plants – apparently that’s heaven for the scorpions who like both vegetation and humidity.

(Make sure to check out Croatia Wise to read about my experiences in Croatia if you want to get ALL the details)

Our beautiful yard. Scorpions agree!

We were just unlucky to have one enter the room, but fortunate enough to find it before it got the chance to crawl into our shoes or any of us step on it over the night.

Even though it doesn’t kill you, a scorpion bite is not something you want to have as a memory anywhere in the world.

But at least you know what to expect – and if you’re not staying at the upper floors (as we fortunately did in the other cities we visited), make sure to check under the bed for scorpions. Better be safe than sorry!

Sharing is caring!

12 thoughts on “Scorpions in Croatia: They’re Real and We Had One in Our Home!”

  1. This happened to me recently. Thou my scorpion was black.

    But thanks to this enlightening article I avoided killing it and set it free. 🙂

    • Happy that at least I was able to save a life 🙂 And even happier that, just like in our case, it didn’t get the chance to bite.

  2. We just found a scorpion in our vacation home in Croatia! It came crawling out of a crack in the floor plint.

    We tried to trap it, but it was prettig fast and went back in the crack.
    My girlfriend walking barefoot quickly put some shoes on.

    What followed were some funny moments me trying to get the creature out of the crack with a stick.

    Finally it came out and walked on the doormat so we could kindly escort it out.

    When I googled ‘scorpion in croatia’ your story showed up!
    Good to know they are not lethal :).

    • Good to hear that the poor little fellow lived. I’m sure it’s never pleasant to see one live, especially before knowing that they’re not that dangerous and we might think. But still… better without them in our rooms, right? 🙂

  3. Just found one in our holiday villa. My friend and I spent 30 minutes trying to get it out and finally succeeded by trapping it under a glass! Knowing it wasn’t a dangerous one is a relief but we didn’t know that at the time. It was a strange 30 minutes of terror and laughter in equal measures as the little chap scared the life out of us.

    • I can imagine how it felt – I guess nobody knows they’re not dangerous until after the encounter 🙂 I was still very afraid for the rest of our time spent in Pula afterwards.

  4. We saw several of them in Punat / Krk island as well, while walking to the apartment in the evening from dinner, they were black with kind of blue reflection, ca. 6-8cm big…. and we just returned home from vacay WITH THAT kind of souvenir!!! my daughter (10y.) had the experience and found it in her sneaker the morning after we came back!! she saw there was something while she wanted to put it on and wanted to take it out with her HAND, who would have known…. suddenly she screamed for her life that sth was there and she touched it (or it touched her hand)…and yes…I was so shocked and instinctively squashed it immediately without mercy, sorry-not sorry 😀
    Anyway…our daughter seems OK, so if it really bit her, we did not notice any symptoms, thank goodness!!

  5. I have encountered a scorpion in Istria last month. I killed it as I was in shock. It was standing in the middle of the room and was almost white. Floor was black. I was standing and for few seconds just processing what I see Then I realized that this is scorpion. Quite scary situation.

  6. Returned last night from holiday in cavtat near Dubrovnik and we had a scorpion on our balcony,the next morning I showed the picture I had taken to a rep that was taken us to Montenegro and she had no idea what it was I said I thought it was a scorpion and was told they don’t have them in Croatia,I showed it to the receptionist and jet 2 tour guide and was told the same ,it wasn’t till today I researched on google to find your stories.23rd Oct 2022

  7. We’re currently looking at one on the ceiling of the bedroom of our upstairs apartment in Krk. We’re just going to leave it and go to sleep. Chance of it dropping into the bed and stinging is minimal I guess. We have lived in the tropics so are used to critters in and around the house: small tarantulas, whip scorpions, scorpions, centipedes.


Leave a Comment