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You don’t know how to relieve the stress of work? Or are you just looking for some relaxation after your exams? Makarska is a perfect choice to leave the weariness of the busy work-days behind. Rest for a while under the shadow of pine trees, on the white pebble beach, on the crystal clear sea, or in a safe port on the deck of a boat. This is also a place for the lovers of gastronomy, the restaurants here will definitely spice up your holiday.
Location of Makarska
Makarska is in a gulf, in the centre of the so-called Makarska Riviera, in Middle Dalmatia. It’s 52 km away from Split as the crow flies, 88 kilometre southeastward on the public road. It’s surrounded by the Osejava Cape from the southeast and the Saint Peter Peninsula from the northwest. The northeastern part of the city spreads out to the Biokovo Mountains.
History of Makarska
The town got its name after the nearby village of Makar, which originally derived from the Phoenician word “mucar”. The Phoenicians must have found a lot of purple murexes in the Gulf of Makarska, the word itself means purple. Its residents were the Illyrians long before written history, Romanians couldn’t conquer it for a long time. Based on the decision of the Synod of Salona, they established the Museum bishopric here in 533. In the 7th-century Croat tribes settled down in the area, then the city and most of Dalmatia was under the control of Venetia. Later it became a site of battles between Venetia and Turkey before the latter conquered it.
In the 16th century, Turkish strengthened the city with walls and three towers to protect it from Venetian attacks. In 1684 the city finally became a part of the Venetian Republic for more than a hundred years. This time the base of the town was made. After the end of the republic, Makarska was part of the Habsburg Empire, then France. The Empire got it back again in 1813. Thanks to the fight for nationality rights, in the 19th century Croatian became the official language.
beaches in Makarska
There are dozens of smaller and bigger islands on the western side of the gorgeous Makarska Riviera, which you can visit easily by car or boat too. Coming by boat guarantees an unforgettable experience, so consider renting one to visit the local beaches.
To reach Brela beach you should go towards Jakirusa until a dead end, where a parking spot for 20 cars is available. In high season the outlying little beach might be crowded, out of season, however, it’s a calm and quiet place. The shore is prone, and the water deepens suddenly, so it’s not recommended for families with small children. If you come here, don’t forget to bring sunshade because there are no beach umbrellas here, and adequate fluid intake is also important.
Baska Voda beach
Baska Voda is a pebble beach favoured by many visitors of Makarska Riviera. Years ago, the most popular beach bar opened its gates on the Riviera. Besides cooling drinks, it entertains guests with pleasant music selection, that swimmers and tourists can enjoy all day and throughout the warm summer nights.
It’s a very popular destination for visitors from many countries. Though it’s not publicly official, the beach is mostly dominated by nudist bathers through the whole season. It’s in a natural environment easily accessible by boat or on foot from the direction of Makarska.
Baska Voda – Ikovac
The Gulf of Velika Duba is one of the most visually pleasing beaches in the Makarska Riviera, especially if you come on foot along the shore, from about 500 m distance. Mala Duba is eastward. If you come here on the highway, the beach is about 100 m from the gulf. In the season paid private parking places are available. There’s a limited amount of natural sunshade, so it’s better to bring one yourself. You can find many bars and restaurants here, and this beach is also ideal for children.
Main sights in Makarska
Makarska is a place of several sights, historical buildings, and churches. Don’t forget to visit the Saint Peter church from the 14th century and the old Franciscan church of Madonna. The Saint Mark Cathedral is on the northern side of the city’s main square. They started building it in 1700 in baroque style with a semicircular apse. Another baroque church is the church of Saint Philip Neri built-in 1758. It’s in the middle of the gulf right on the seashore. On the right side of the altar, there’s the grave of Stjepan Blašković bishop, who started building it. Tomislav Kršnjavi is the sculptor behind the well-known sculpture of St. Peter here.
Another sight is the botanical garden above Kotišina district in 350-500 height. With an area of 16,5 hectares, it’s the home of about 300 the Mediterranean and upland species of plants in a natural environment. In certain parts of the garden, you can see exotic plants, farming plants and herbs as well. On the seashore, there’s an imposing palace from the late renaissance era of the 19th century, the palace of the Kacic-Peko family, which rather looks like a fortress to the modern eyes.
Weather of Makarska
The Mediterranean climate of the region offers a lot of sunshine, dry and hot summers and mild, rainy winters.
Rent a boat Makarska
One of the most beautiful ports in Dalmatia is in Makarska. The harbour built from stones withstands the northern and southern winds. This old construction remained thanks to the Peter and Osejava Peninsulas, which surrounds and protects the city from bad weather. The Ferry Port Makarska is the biggest port between the rivers Omiš-Cetina and Neretva. You can see numerous boats, and yachts along with Makarska’s port, as well as sailboats. Naturally, boat rental is available. Thanks to the centricity of the port, it’s inevitable for sailors and those who come by boats to anchor here and enjoy the city, or the opportunities of the local beaches for a day.
In olden times this port was the primary source for keeping contact with other cities, while it also served as an important trading point, especially at the time of the Osman and Venetian occupation. The port has started modernizing the pier on Osejava Peninsula in February of 2013. Therefore, now the port itself is better sheltered from the weather and can host more boats. If you’d also become a sea explorer for a while, Makarska and its vicinity is a great choice. Besides several boat and yacht rental opportunities, there are other ways to enjoy the sea. On the beach, you can choose among many active and passive pastimes. The lovers of history can easily fall in love with the cultural side of this charming city. All of this makes Makarska an equally ideal destination for young couples, elders, and families too. Find yacht routes in Dalmatia or choose another yacht charter in Dalmatia.
The climate diagrams are based on 30 years of hourly weather model simulations. They give good indications of typical climate patterns and expected conditions (temperature, precipitation, sunshine, and wind). The “mean daily maximum” (solid red line) shows the maximum temperature of an average day for every month for Makarska. Likewise, the “mean daily minimum” (solid blue line) shows the average minimum temperature.
The wind rose for Makarska shows how many hours per year the wind blows from the indicated direction. The diagram for Makarska shows the days per month, during which the wind reaches a certain speed.
Rent a boat in Makarska, and cruise around Makarska
Day 1. Makarska – Podgora 9.46 km (5.88 mi), Day 2. Podgora – Drvenik 16.72 km (10.39 mi), Day 3. Drvenik – Gradac 10.04 km (6.24 mi), Day 4. Gradac – Ploče 12.63 km (7.85 mi), Day 5. Ploče – Trpanj (Pelješac Peninsula) 14.51 km (9.01 mi), Day 6. Trpanj (Pelješac Peninsula) – Sućuraj (Hvar Island) 14.80 km (9.19 mi), Day 7. Sućuraj (Hvar-island) – Sumartin (Brač-island) – Makarska 45.53 km (28.29 mi).
Day 1. Makarska – Omiš 31.86 km (19.80 mi), Day 2. Omiš – Kaštel Gomilica 29.28 km (18.20 mi), Day 3. Kastel Gomilica – Stari Grad (Hvar Island) 46.91 km (29.15 mi), Day 4. Stari Grad (Hvar Island) – Vis (Vis Island) 40.14 km (24.94 mi), Day 5. Vis (Vis Island) – Vela Luka (Korčula Island) 44.90 km (27.90 mi), Day 6. Vela Luka (Korčula Island) – Sucuraj (Hvar Island) 57.24 km (35.57 mi), Day 7. Sucuraj (Hvar Island) – Sumartin (Brač Island) – Makarska 46.94 km (29.17 mi).
Read more about Makarska sailing or Dalmatia sailing itineraries