Lake Peruca

Vegan Holidays in Split, Croatia – a Nature Lover’s Paradise

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Perfect Destination

Natural beauty, rich cultural heritage and vegan restaurants make Split the perfect destination for vegan holidays. While discovering a magical combination of mountains, rivers, forests and sea, you will wonder about the diversity of nature in such a small territory.

In this article I will give you some suggestions of which places to visit and where to enjoy tasty vegan delights. All spots are nearby Split, with more info online or OpenStreetMap GPS tracks.

Hiking

Mountain Kamesnica – Kurtegica Dolac (1,450m)

Mountain Kamesnica

This is the most beautiful part of Kamesnica and is located on the Bosnian side of the mountain. Most of the route takes you through beech and fir forests, which makes the trip pleasant even during the hottest weather conditions. It is possible to proceed towards the mountain ridge (1,700m), from where you can see Bosnian and Croatian landscapes.

There is a proverb among hikers that says, “If you want someone to fall in love with mountains, take him to Kurtegica Dolac”.

Mountain Kamesnica

Mountain Svilaja Viewpoint (1,508m)

The starting point for the ascent is the mountain house Orlove stine (1,050m altitude), located near picturesque mountain village Zelovo. The view from the top of the mountain is a special experience and one of the most attractive sights in Dalmatia. From here, you can see the central-Dalmatian islands (Vis, Brac, Hvar), the Kornati, surrounding mountains (Velebit, Dinara, Kamesnica, Biokovo, Mosor), Lake Peruca and sometimes it is even possible to see Italy.

Lake Peruca

Mountain Dinara – Croatia’s Highest Peak (1,831m)

Dinara probably influenced the National Geographic to list the Via Dinarica trail as one of the best hiking destinations in the world. It has a rich biodiversity, with a large number of endemic species. The mountain’s specific geo-morphological terrain makes it the object of numerous biological and speleological research projects.

Mountain Dinara – towards the highest peak of Croatia

This 84 kilometer long mountain range (the second longest in the Dinaric Alps) makes a natural border between Croatia and Bosnia. There are several different paths to the peak, with options to stay overnight in a shelter or mountain house.

The Kamesnica, Svilaja and Dinara mountains are hidden from massive tourism, so you can enjoy them in peace and stillness.

National Park Krka – Educational Path „Stinice – Roski Slap – Ozidjana Pecina“

This path is in a hidden and peaceful part of Krka, located far away from overcrowded parts of this spectacular and famous Croatian National Park. Marshlands, forest, canyon and spectacular views make it one of the most stunning walking trails in Croatia.

National Park Krka – Roski Slap

Bear Refuge Kuterevo

Although it’s not so close to Split (280 km), it would be a shame not to see these beautiful animals while you are in Croatia. Their charisma and size make them magnificent, but their shyness reminds us that they are vulnerable and need our care and protection. Since you will be in the area, you can also visit the nearby National park Northern Velebit or Plitvice lakes.

Bear Refuge Kuterevo

To find out more about Bear Refuge Kuterevo, visit:https://kuterevo.wordpress.com/

Swimming

Island Ciovo – Slatine

Beaches in Slatine are less crowded, with pine trees and clear sea. From Slatine, you can take a 3km hike to one of most beautiful places on the Croatian coastline – Gospa od Prizidnice (Church of Our Lady of Prizidnica). It’s an abandoned monastery, located on the cliffs of the southern part of island. There you can enjoy a romantic sunset/sunrise and views of the Adriatic sea and islands.

Medena Beach – Seget Donji

This beautiful beach is located 34 km from Split. On your way back you can stop in Trogir, an amazing historic town protected by UNESCO.

Cycling

Dalmatian Hinterland – River Ruda

Dalmatian hinterland has a lot of amazing cycling paths. I recommend the town of Sinj for a starting point. From there, you can cycle to some springs (Ruda, Grab, Ovrlja) and around Lake Peruca or, for those in better shape, take the Eagle Path „Sinj – Bile Vode – Zelovo – pl. dom – Zelovo – Lucane –Sinj“.

Dalmatian Hinterland – River Grab

Accommodation

I recommend that you find sustainable accommodation on Ecobnb and make a donation for planting trees to neutralize your travel footprint. Below, I suggest one such place to stay.

Eco Camp Gea Viva (the Island of Brac)

Gea Viva is an eco-camp designed using permaculture principles, which demonstrates how to live in harmony with nature, by combining spirituality with ecology. The camp has its own solar showers, energy sources, water reservoirs, garden and orchard, plus it is only a 15 minute walk from the beach.

It is an ideal place to retreat, to attend workshops and for those who want to connect with their deeper inner self. They serve only vegan/vegetarian meals.

Vegan Options in Split

Here is our list of recommendations for places with vegan options (you can find more details online):

  • MakaMaka – Amazing acai bowls and vegan smoothies.
  • UpCafe In my opinion, this is the best vegan restaurant in Split. With wonderful take-away tortilla wraps for your hiking days.
  • Daddy Cool – Very tasty vegan green falafel.
  • Kat’s Kitchen – Although it’s not 100% vegan, they have excellent plant-based options and I definitely recommend them.
  • Marta’s Veggie Fusion – Excellent vegan/vegetarian bar in Split center.
  • Konoba Matoni – Only has 2 (very good) vegan options, but the advantage is that they work on Sunday.
  • Green caffe | Mall of Split Vegan pizza.
  • Zdrawo – They produce amazing raw cakes. Definitely a must try! You can find their products in a few places in Split:
    • Health In (Simiceva 2A)
    • Caffe bar Galerija umjetnina (Ulica Kralja Tomislava 15)
    • Cukarin (City center One Split)
    • Bistro Roots Coffee and Cuisine (Ivana Gundulica 26)
    • Zeru Coffee and Wine Bar (Matosica 5)
  • Vege Fast Food Veggie fast food in the city center near the green market.

Further Advice

If you need more help, tips and information for planning your holidays in Croatia or to access our services, feel free to contact me on markocvrlje@gmail.com.

Marko and his hiking companion, Mimi

This article was written by Marko Cvrlje, nature lover and hiking guide. Marko is manager of the travel agency, Better Green World and organizes vegan tours amidst the magnificent Croatian nature. Better Green World’s mission is to raise awareness about veganism and environmental protection.

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