Holidays on Brac Island – the untouched part
A while ago we had the opportunity to visit the Island Brac, as the island is situated just opposite to Split, we of course have been there many times, but this trip was a bit different, as the local tourist board had been so kind to help us finding the most interesting spots to see and visit in the Selca area.
Before I start telling about our trip to Selca, first a little information about the Island in general. The island of Brac is the 3 largest of the Croatian Islands, the peak of the island Vidova Gora, is with its 778 meter, the highest point on any island in the Adriatic. The island is situated app. 8 nautical miles from Split, from here there are several daily car ferries, on the south eastern peak of the island there is a ferry connection from Makarska to Sumartin, the city Bol on the south site of the Island can be reach with Catamaran from Split.
Brac has a population of app. 12.000, the main city is Supetar, which is where the ferry arrive from Split, the most famous spot on the island is the beach Zlatni Rat (The golden horn) in Bol, which is among the top 10 beaches in Croatia, Zlatni Rat is also know as a paradise for surfers and Kite surfers.
Cities on Island Brac:
On the part of the Island turning towards the main land (north) the following cities can be found, Sutivan, Supetar, Splitska, Postira Pučišća, Povlja. At the western end of the Island the fisherman city Milna can be found, on the south side of the island Bol, and at the south-eastern peak of the island the municipal Selca, with the villages Sumartin, Novo Selo and Povlja.
The main city in the municipal Selca, is Selca which is placed on a hill terrace cascading towards the Sea, below Selca, the coastal city Sumartin can be found, north east of Selca the small bay town Povlja finalised to municipal. The main industry in Selca municipal is stonemasonry.
Our trip to the municipal Selca – Day 1:
Our trips started from Split friday afternoon, where we together with our friends Heiko and Ivana (a German / Croatian couple), took the ferry to Supetar. The ferry trip which takes about 50 minutes cost a bit more then 4 Euros for adults, 2 Euro for children and 22 Euro for a car.
Well arrived in Supetar we continued our trip across the island to Selca, the drive took us about 40 minutes. In Selca, we meet with Irena from the local tourist board, she gave us a small guided tour in Selca, where we among other saw some of the 13 statues in the city, and the beautiful Church in the town centre, inside the Church there is a Ivan Meštrović statue of Christ, which was made shortly after WWII from melted firearm cartridges (do to lack of metal and money, this was the only solution).
After the sightseeing we continued with the car to Puntinak (the coastal part of Selca) where we had our accommodation for the weekend, after a short break we walked to the restaurant Bilin where dinner was waiting for us, on the menu there was Black Risotte, Zagreb Schnitzel and the house specialty, Spaghetti with Shrimps in Prosecco sauce. For dessert we had pancakes with chocolate and ice crème which of course was a hit by the kids.
The food was delicious, especially the prosecco sauce was an absolute highlight and a must try, but the most interesting thing (or what I will remember the most) from the restaurant was the homemade Rakija we had after the dinner, let me put it like this, during the years in Croatia I most have tasted close to 100 different homemade Rakijas, this Rakija, which was made with about 15 different herbs, is the most unique one I ever tried, the taste was very strange, not that it was bad in the taste, no it was just indefinable.
Our trip to the municipal Selca – Day 2:
Next day we started out with a bit of exercise, Irena had arranged for us to have breakfast at a small place offering agro tourism, the places was supposed to be 1 – 1.5 km walk from our apartment, well as it happens in Croatia, 1 km is not equal 1000 meter, but often 2000-3000 meters, so the climb up hill in the baking sun, was much tougher then anticipated, luckily we met a guy in a minibus who was so kind to take us about half of the way, and he even came and picked us up when we had to leave again.
Well arrived at the agro place we where awarded with a astonishing view on the main land and the Adriatic Sea, our host served a typical Dalmatian breakfast with a spatiality of the house – Fish Carpaccio – which was raw sardines marinated in olive oil, lemon and garlic, as you can see on the photo here Ida liked it a lot.
The Agro place had sleeps for 6-8 persons, bathroom and kitchen, two of the beds was in the small stone house (picture below), where the owner used to sleep with his parents when he was a child. So if you are up for a special experience you might want to consider staying at the agro place a day or two, a more quite place is not easy to find, you can contact tourist board in Selca for more information about the agro place above Sumartin.
After finishing our breakfast the driver took us to see a nicely renovated stone house in the area, wow the house was really nice, the owner had spend 5 years on renovating the house, the details in wood and stone was amazing, you could really see that he enjoyed what he was doing. The owner told us that it most properly would take another 5 years before a second house and everything outside would be finished!
After seeing the house, the driver took us back to our cars, so we could continue to next part of our program which was lunch in restaurant “Stara Uljara” (Old olive press) in Povlja, here our host served us an excellent mixed grill. The Konobar told us the story about the olive press, the press was one of the first in Dalmatia it used to be extremely busy as Brac in earlier days had almost 10 mio. Olive trees.
The city Povlja is situated in a picturesque bay, considering how nice everything looked I was a bit surprised to hear that the city unfortunately has had a decreasing number of tourist, main reason was that the only Hotel in the city closed about 7 years ago.
After enjoying the nice lunch, we had a cooling swim in the bay before we went to see the Basilika from the 6th century.
One of the highlights of the afternoon was a visit by “Teta Fany” an older lady, who produces herbal tee and cream, based on 24 different herbs which she finds in the nature. Fany started with the herbs as here husband got very sick, by the doctors he was prognoses only to a few month left, Fany would not believe that so she started giving him here Herbal tee, which apparently had a good effect as her husband lived for another 3.5 years. Through word of mouth people started coming to Fany to buy some of her herbal tee and cream, over the years more and more people from different country has used here herbal products for curing all kinds of different diseases.
In Fany’s garden she has more or less all the herbs she used for her product, this is mainly to show people the different herbs, for her products she only uses wild herbs.
After visiting Fany, we went to a stone-masonry to see how the famous white Brac stone is cut, I must admit I never thought about how something like this was done, so it was quite fascinating hearing the worker explain how they cut the stone with an “endless” metal line with diamonds. First they cut the sites and the back part of the 3 * 1.5 m block, as last thing they push wedges under the block till it finally breaks of. The finished blocks are then transport on a huge caterpillar truck to the factory where they are cut it in pieces.
As you can see on the pictures here we also visited the factory, the massive saw on the first picture slices the stone block like a bread, the slices are then fed into the production line which gradually makes the peaces smaller and smaller, at the end of production line regular sized tiles (30 * 30) comes out. The tiles are really beautiful and with app. 30 euro an m2 also affordable.
Last program point of the day was a visit to a small agro farm outside of Selca. As we arrived we where met by a table full of homemade product, which included, Prsut, cheese, bread, Fig nuts, red wine, Cherry juice, Rakija and Prosecco we of course where invited to try as much as we wanted to, the highlight was when the kids and the farmer came with some of the goats so we could try fresh goat milk!
As I am not into any product which comes from a goat, I did not taste the milk, but the others said it was quite good. The owner suggested us to come another time to taste the Red bull from Selca? Red bull from Selca is cold goat milk mixed with red wine according to him this should be a very power full drink?
We finish our second day with few beers and a slice of Pizza on the main square in Selca, where the locals where assembled to watch world cup on a big screen.
Our trip to the municipal Selca – Day 3:
Day 3 started out with an excellent breakfast at Restaurant TOP in Sumartin, on the menu there was Omelet, cucumber and tomato salad as well as bread and different sausages. The kids as always went exploring in the area, suddenly Ida called us and told she found something interesting, have a look at the picture below and see if you can find out what Ida discovered?
After breakfast we where pick up by the local water taxi service, who took us for a 40 minutes, sailing trip to a remote beach, here we had a few hours of swimming and relaxation, as you can see on the pictures below the spot was really excellent. At the remote beach we also visit a local family who has a small house next to the beach, during summer month they offers sailing trip from Sumartin to the remote beach, the trip include the sailing trip as well as barbecue at their terrace.
After the cooling swim we continued back to Sumartin, on the way the “taxi driver” took us to a few other bays, where we among other saw this excellent spot for hill climbing.
Around 4 PM we where ready to head back to Supetar after a very exiting weekend on Island Brac, it was really excellent stuff which the tourist board had prepared for us. If our small travel story from the municipal Selca, should have encouraged you to visit this area, please fell free to contact the local tourist board for information about the areas we visited. Below you can find some general recommendation and information from our side, which we think is good to know before arrival.
Turistička zajednica općine Selca:
- Tourist board municipa Selca
- Tel/Fax: 00385 21 648 209
- (The webpage is currently being restructured, so please use the e-mail address for any contact)
Getting to the Island:
- As mentioned earlier there is two car ferry connection to the Island Brac
- Split – Supertar (Very frequent)
- Makarska – Sumartin
- Prices for both ferries is the same, if you are going to Selca, it is easier to take the ferry from Makarska, especially in the summer month where is can get crowded on the island.
Who should go to Municipal Selca:
- People who want to spend a holiday in peaceful surrounding
- People who likes, Nature, Hiking and bike riding
- Families with smaller kids
Useful Island Brac / Selca information and tips:
- Prices for daily good on the island is about 30% higher then on the mainland, so it is advisable to bring the most regular stuff.
- The municipal Selca is a cheaper place to stay then e.g. Bol (which is only a 25 minute drive from Selca)
- It is highly recommendable to bring a car, especially if you want to explore the island.
- The nightlife offer is limited on the island, so if you have teenagers in the party age, you might want to reconsider your destination.
- Try some of the local produced product like olive oil, quality if outstanding.