Heading Out From Split, Maslinica, Komiža, Vis, Hvar (Palmižana), Stari Grad, Milna (island of Brac)
Alternatively: The bays of Šolta (Necujam), Stoncica, Šcedro, Vrboska, Jelsa, Bol, Lucice Bay.
Special moments: the fisherman’s town of Komiža, the Blue Grotto on Biševo, Budihovac and other Vis islets, the Paklinski (Pakleni) islands, the bays of Hvar and Brac.
Split, Croatia – Gallery
What to look out for: a strong mistral on the sea around Vis and the Hvar channel, the shallows and reefs along the southeastern shores of Vis. It is not easy to suggest a seven-day voyage through the central Dalmatian islands; one could enjoy wandering three or four days just around Vis and Biševo or just along the bays of Šolta or just around Brac, and then to the Bol – Jelsa – Vrboska – Stari Grad triangle. Then during the next three days tour the stunning coves of the Paklinski islands or Šcedro… To say nothing of the beauty of the southern coast of Korcula or the challenges of Lastovo… Two weeks would not suffice for a true central Dalmatian tour! We will limit ourselves, therefore, to only one of the possible proposals.
Head out on the open seas on day two – its 25 miles of open water to Komiža (29 miles from Necujam); with the mistral blowing off your starboard side it should be a pleasant sail. Off Cape Barjaci on Vis you’ll be awaited by somewhat larger waves as the mistral picks up strength.In Komiža, if you find a free berth, draw in behind the breakwater were there are moorings, electricity and water available. Evening in Komiža will pass quickly, and if your get into a conversation with one of the older locals about Palagruža, the falkuša sailboats, the Komiža pogaca pastry and salted anchovies, you’ll hear wistful tales of the glorious history of fishing and how fishing is holding up these days, still almost the only source of income in this place, reminiscent of southern seas. (The food and ambient is excellent at the Bako and Jastožera restaurants).
Start the next morning by making the 5 miles out to Biševo; try to drop anchor off the entrance to the Blue Grotto, and if you don’t succeed in this, have the crew make trips in turns to the cave – someone should always be on the boat.If you can swim into the cave the experience will be all the more exciting! The fantastic effect of the play of light in the cave depends on the position of the sun and is best around 11 o’clock or at noon. The Mediterranean monk seal used to live here and is still seen from time to time in the Adriatic. After the beauty of the Blue Grotto, and before casting off to sail the southern shores of Vis, round Biševo to its other side to Salbunare Bay or to Porta (Biševo ports). When sailing along the cliffs of the Vis coast find Stiniva, a natural phenomenon featuring a beach set between the rocks. Right next to it is Mala Travna in which local Vis poet and environmentalist Senko Karuza sells his wine and cooks in the local style during the summer. Be sure to drop anchor if only for a short stop off the islet of Budihovac: you’ll find clear water in shallow lagoon that can be entered only from the south. You’ll anchor under the vineyards where one of the island’s finest plavac wine grapes is maturing. Round the northeastern cape of Vis by evening and make for the Vis harbour (or alternatively: drop anchor off beautiful and gentle Stoncica; there is an excellent restaurant there owned by the Lincir brothers where, besides fish, you can order goat meat). In Vis just as in Komiža there are equipped berths on a long waterfront. There is also a gas station here; right were the waterfront of Issa was in the antiquity. You can also berth in Kut, the oldest and best-looking part of the harbour on its southeast. There are two culinary rarities here, the Vatrica and Pojoda restaurants, the latter a top-notch affair owned by Zoran Brajcic. That will bring the days total to about 23 miles.
On day four it is already time to start heading back, for a start definitely to Hvar (14 miles). Its your choice whether to make for the crowds in Hvar’s harbour itself, the greenery of Palmižana marina on the Paklinski islands or the peace of one of the ten or so bays along their southern coasts; from the marina you can take their boat across to the city of Hvar. Hvar is simply Hvar – you have to experience it. Squeezed into a small area is an ancient patrician city with a wealth of history that is justly a favourite with many tourists. In the bevy of restaurants you can find excellent eating at the Bracanovic family’s Luvij wine konoba or at the Lukulusu.Round Cape Pelegrin next morning towards Stari Grad (15 miles). You can stop for a swim on your way in the nice coves on the northern coast or in the dozen inlets of port Tiha under the northern cape of Stari Grad Bay. In this deep and wide bay you will discover Hvar’s other face: a town of fishermen, farm hands and narrow streets in the midst of which Petar Hektorovic’s 16th century Tvrdalj, a fortified villa, proudly stands with its renowned fish pond as a centrepiece. Like on Vis, here too you will find equipped berths with moorings and an abundance of cosy restaurants on the beautiful narrow streets. You have sailed into the island’s oldest settlement, an ancient Greek colony.
Day six should be used to wander with your boat to the numerous bays towards Vrboska, Jelsa and on to the east, but if you do not want to leave too many miles ahead of you on the last day, point your prow towards Milna on the island of Brac (15 miles from Stari Grad). You will find two marinas there. (If you have the time, before passing through Splitska vrata on your way to Milna, take a swim in one of the many inlets of the wonderful and densely forested Lu?ice Bay, only two miles from Splitska vrata to the southeast.)
For tomorrow’s return to Split you have only some ten miles to cross (18 to Trogir), so that there is time for another swim in one of the bays on your way, either those on Brac (near Bobovšcica) or on Šolta (Stipanska, Lestimanova or Krušcica).