Updated: May 19, 2020
Makarska Riviera is an excellent starting point for easy full and half day excursions. Taking long distance rides in the middle of August, during the heat wave, takes any joy out of exploring new places of our little country.
Taking a day for excursion does not mean you need to give up your beach day. That is why we are starting with full day trip to the islands.
1. Islands Brac and Hvar - You have several transport options to get to the islands. Take a ferry from Makarska to Brac, Sumartin and then take a bus across the island to the most famous place on Brac, Bol. The ride takes around 20 minutes and it is a pretty narrow road. For Hvar, you need to catch a ferry from Drvenik or Split, depending on a place you would like to visit. If you would like to find out best things to visit, make sure to check out our page Islands.
One of the most popular beaches in Croatia, Zlatni rat
Another way is taking an organized boat trip that includes both islands in full day excursion. The trip starts early in the morning and first stop is Jelsa, Hvar. The boat ride takes about 2 hours. You have about 1.5 hours in Jelsa for sightseeing. Jelsa is beautiful, but very small place, you will have time for some coffee and ice cream. From Jelsa, the boat continues towards Bol on the island of Brac, and lunch is served during the ride. It takes around 1 hour to get to Bol. From the port, you can walk to the beach Zlatni Rat (eng. Golden Horn), around 1.5 km or use a local taxi boat that will ride you to the beach for around 20 kn, paid in a taxi boat in cash.
The ride back is scheduled for evening hours.
Make sure to download our free app All in Makarska Riviera to make reservations and check out options. There are several travel agencies offering such excursions. You can contact them directly from the app. This app is free for every Android and iOS users.
2. Imotska krajina (countryside) - discover beauty of Dalmatian countryside only 40 minutes ride from Makarska. Located in the hinterland of Biokovo massif, Imotski, cute little town, is most famous for its two lakes, Blue and Red Lake, natural phenomenons.
The Blue Lake is around 150 m deep. The level of water in the lake varies throughout the year – sometimes it reaches more than 100 m, but it is not rare for the lake to dry up completely in the autumn. When it does, the locals hold a football match at the bottom of the lake. Over the years, this match became sort of a spectacle, and attracts many visitors.
The Red Lake, named after the intimidating red cliffs that surround it, is located around 1.5 km west of the town center. It is a right of passage for any young man to be able to actually throw a rock into the water of the lake. The depth is still uncertain, since the lake has a siphon at the bottom, and from there, the water ends up most likely in the Adriatic sea. This yet has to be 100% verified, as the diving expeditions are expensive and take a lot of time.
There are many family farms in the area, offering their homemade products such as wine, honey, cheese, olive oil, meat products (Prosciutto - read more about this authentic Dalmatian product), souvenirs...
If you decide for organized travel agency, such as Tip Extreme, you will definitely end up
tasting delicious wine from local winery.
How the lake of Imotski came to be! -Red Lake
Red Lake in Imotski
3. Nature park Biokovo - beautiful mountain Biokovo is part of Dinaric Mountains and as such has very interesting vegetation, some of the oldest Mediterranean plants grow there. Old village Kotišina has its own little botanical garden. Biokovo is also known for its wild horses living free on the mountain. Be careful when approaching wild horses, do not try to pet them! They are accustomed to people, but from a safe distance.
Unless you are an experienced mountaineer and climber, make sure to book a trip to the nature park with a local travel agency. Biokovo mountain is a dangerous mountain with many hidden caves and it is easy to get lost. Sadly, several people have lost their lives there, because they didn't know what they were getting themselves into.
Half day panoramic tour to its highest peak Sv. Jure (1762m) with slow walking is perfect for older citizens, as well as for those who enjoy easier walks.
Jacket, boots/sneakers and hat are mandatory, even for organized tours. Flip-flops and sandals are not acceptable footwear! Don't forget water and some snacks in case you get hungry. If you like to find out more click over to our page Biokovo.
4. Omiš - this little Dalmatian town is situated at the mouth of the Cetina River, 35 minutes away from Makarska, towards Split. Experience visit to popular fortress Mirabela and Fortica (climbing to the fortress Fortica does take some time, better to visit if you decide to stay more than a day in Omiš).
In summer months, you can sail out into the open sea from the Omiš town port or the Cetina mouth on one of the many tourist ships and boats.
Fan of sports? Excellent, Canyon of Cetina is famous for its active holiday offers, such as ziplining, canyoning, kayaking and rafting.
Visit old mill in Radmanove Mlinice (complex of the mills was taken over by the Radman family, who gradually started using it as a summer villa) and stop for delicious lunch. Make sure you taste the trout they offer.
Radmanove Mlinice were chosen as one of the locations for the filming of the famous Winnetou movie in the period from 1962 to 1969.
For more information about Omiš, make sure to check out its tourist board web site Visit Omiš.