Island of adventure: Brac, Croatia

brac croatia We’re almost into a new year, so what better time to start planning for some new trips? While there are some great adventure destinations out there that have proven to be well-worth the journey, there are still some lesser known regions that have a lot to offer. One of these is the Island of Brac in Croatia, a region full of outdoor and adrenaline-pumping activities.

Hike up, or mountain bike down, the tallest peak in the Adriatic Islands

Standing at about 2,553 feet high is Vidova Gora, also known as Vitus Mount. From the top, you will be able to have an unobstructed view of beaches, mountain slopes, and some of the Dalmatia Islands. The trek consists of various terrain; at one point it may be rocky and steep while at other times the trail is low and sandy. The most popular hike on the island is from Vidova Gore to Blaca Hermitage.

It is also popular to mountain bike down the peak, which offers a thrilling way to see the scenery. Moreover, the island of Brac itself has a extensively developed network of white roads and single tracks for mountain biking. The paths have virtually no traffic, and the natural scenery of pine woods, olive fields, and secluded beaches combined with the mix of easy and challenging terrain makes this one picturesque adventure. For guided hikes and bike rides, contact Aldura Sport.Scuba dive underwater caves

Brac is home to some excellent scuba diving, especially because the island receives such little rainfall, making for very clear visibility. One great place is Lucica Cave, located in the biggest cove on the island on Brac’s southeast coast. The entrance to the cave is near the exit of the cove, about 10 feet underwater. Once you enter the aquatic cave, the average depth you will experience is about 58 feet, although at times it goes as deep as 134.5 feet. Once inside, you will be amazed at the expansiveness of the cave, as well as the size of the fish. If you’d like to take a diving course or go with a guide in Brac, some reputable operators include Amber Dive Center and Nautic Center Bol.

kiteboardWindsurf or Kiteboard in the channel between Brac and Hvar Island

Make your way over to Bol on Brac Island and experience the ideal place for windsurfing. The channel between Brac Island and Hvar Island is well-known for its maestral winds that cause stable weather conditions that are perfect for windsurfing. The winds in this area are also stronger than anywhere else on the island, with mild winds in the morning, perfect for getting your practice in. Kiteboarding, water skiing, wake boarding, and para-sailing are also popular in this area. If you’re interested in windsurfing lessons, contact Aldura Sport. For kiteboarding, contact YellowCat Kiteboarding.

Rock climb in the Lozisca region

In Brac, there are over 100 rock climbing routes of varying intensities for visitors to enjoy. The climbing area in Lozisca, a village located in a simple stone glade, is the perfect place for beginner and intermediate climbers due to its variety of available routes. You can get to the village easily from the nearby areas of Sutivan and Supetar. Climbs in this area give participants great views of the the diverse landscape as rolling hills, green valleys, and shimmering water can be seen all at once. For a map of the routes with their intensity grades, click here. One popular tour company for this climb is Aldura Sport, who will give you 3 hours of climbing as well as a lesson to make sure you are prepared.

Sea kayak in an ideal location

The Island of Brac is a premier location for sea kayaking for people of all levels, mostly because of its predictability in terms of winds and currents. It is also very safe, as no matter where you are a beach is only 10 minutes away by kayak. The island also enjoys many areas with little tourism so the water and land can be enjoyed in a truly natural setting. For a more challenging kayaking adventure, the nearby islands of Hvar and Šolta are just few hours of paddling away.

Try the island’s popular sport of stand up paddle surfing

Stand up paddle surfing (SUP), which is a form of surfing that allows for increased visibility, can be done anywhere on Brac Island. One very natural route is Sutivan-Bobovišća. Begin at Sutivan and go along the northwest shore, paddling along a construction-free area of small pebble beaches with almost no boat traffic. For a longer, more challenging route, go all the way to Bobovišća, a town rich in cultural history.

slacklining Channel your inner circus performer and try slacklining

First introduced to Croatia during their annual extreme sports festival (see below), Slacklining has become a favorite adventure sport on Brac Island. Think of it as walking a tightrope, as participants walk on a flat nylon rope that is attached to two points. According to Eti Ljubetic Steka of Aldura Sport, one of the major adventure sports companies of Brac, “We usually do
it during the break of climbing sessions or after them during dinner time. For example, after climbing or biking, we take our groups to an authentic shepherd’s village for a traditional dinner, a lamb meal, and while waiting for the dinner we set up a slackline park in the village among the trees and have some fun.”

Attend the annual extreme sports festival, Vanka Regule, in July

For a week every July in Sutivan on Brac Island, peole flock from all over the world to attend the extreme sports festival, Vanka Regule. Since 1999, free climbing, trail running, sea kayaking, mountain biking, free diving, dry tooling, and more are enjoyed by attendees. Along with doing and watching active sports, there is a film festival to go along with the theme.