Walking trail: Bast - Makarska
Difficulty: easy - medium
Lenght: about 7 km one way
Time: around 2 hours walk
If you need a good bike ride, or are in mood for some hiking, or a longer dog walk, we have a perfect trail ready for you!
Your starting point is in the village of Bast, situated right above Baška Voda. You'll need some transport to get there (unless you're lucky enough to stay in one of the restored old houses in the village). We recommend you equip your phone with Makarska Riviera app, available for IOS or Android, which contains all the info on local bus schedule, car rentals and taxi services to help you get there.
You park at the cemetery in the center of the village, parking is free and open for everyone. Another great thing about this route is that you can fill up you water bottle right at the beginning of the trail. Next to the parking area, there is a faucet with fresh Biokovo mountain water. Make sure you have enough, the trail is 7 kilometers long, and you'll be leaving civilization and water access until you reach the end of it.
From the faucet, take a look at your right - the road leads downhill a bit, and after only a few meters there is a left turn. It is marked, and that is the start of your route.
Take a good look around you. Notice the sounds and the scents - there's an abundance of wildlife, plants and herbs everywhere around you. See those small evergreen bushes with delicate little white flowers on them? That is Winter Savory (or vrisak in Croatian). And that other one, with the elongated soft leaves and purple flowers at then of long stems? That one is Sage (or kadulja in Croatian). Both are often seen in the kitchen and in the apothecary cabinets.
Notice the peace, the quiet, the birds and the bees, the sounds of the forest. Relax for a moment and leave your worries behind.
The path is winding and a bit upwards at first, but some spectacular scenery opens up soon enough. You're standing above Zlatan Otok vineyards, and looking right across, towards Baška Voda, but also Brela, Promajna, and island Brac. The vineyards stretch over 75 hectares with 650 000 vines planted. Some of the best Croatian wines are made in those vineyards, like the Pošip wine 2010, a regional champion at the Decanter World Wine Awards 2012.
The path continues on towards east, and towards Makarska.
We're sure you'll enjoy the scenery. You'll have everything right in front of you: the wide gravel road, the sounds of nature, the view of the islands and the mountain above your head. The trail is not very demanding - if you're in good shape, you should be able to do it without a problem. Remember, the map we provide here is only for orientation purposes; make sure you get a proper map at Nature Park Biokovo Info Center in Makarska before embarking on a hike!
Also, make sure you have everything you need in your backpack with you. Water, proper hiking footwear (flip flops or sandals of any kind are not acceptable!), full battery on your phone, sunblock, hat, layers of clothing. And never ever wander off the main track. Even a few meters off the road can lead into deep bushes and sharp rock areas, and it's nearly impossible to get out of such places without calling the universal emergency number 112, and the Croatian mountain rescue service coming to get you. If you don't want to your friends and family at home to read in the newspaper how you got lost in Biokovo mountain, stay on the track!
We decided to end this track in Vepric, the Croatian sanctuary of Our Lady of Lourdes. The sanctuary was founded in 1908 by bishop dr Juraj Caric (1867-1921), who was also buried here. The sanctuary was build into a natural cave, with a creek running straight though the entire area. The whole place looks a lot like Lourdes in France, and it was hence dedicated to Our Lady of Lourdes. It is visited by pilgrims all year round, and the main pilgrimages are on Feb 11th, March 25th, Aug 15th and Sept 7th & 8th. But even if you're not a very religious person, you can still enjoy the tranquility of the area, especially after a long walk. It's a cherry on top of your cake, to say the least!