Whether your ideal getaway is relaxing on the beach, exploring nature, cultural sightseeing, or just eating and drinking well; I think you’ll definitely find this hidden treasure of the Adriatic Coast an ideal match for you. Its location on Pelješac peninsula in southern Dalmatia makes Orebić a perfect vacation hub with so many exploring possibilities.
Here are some favorite day by day experiences from Orebić and beyond.
Hike the short trail up to the lookout above Orebić, where the Franciscan monastery is. This trail is delightful, almost easy enough to be considered a stroll; or cheat by taking a car, your choice. Either way, upon reaching the hilltop you will be wowed by the best view in the hood – Pelješac strait beautifully framed by Korčula archipelago. On a clear day you can see as far as the islands of Mljet and Lastovo. Dense cypress trees make such a nice contrast to the shimmering surface of the Adriatic Sea.
After the hike, go to Croccantino for a guilt free gelato, “ledeni vjetar” cake or whatever your heart desires from their yummy choices of sweet delights. Friendly warning from one Croccantino addict to a potential one: going there might become your daily ritual! Oh well, at least on vacation you can follow their moto “La vita è bella” and enjoy the beauty of life. They have shops in Orebić and Viganj, and an ice cream truck in Lovište.
Chill out all day long on gorgeous Mokalo Beach, just a few minute drive or boat ride from Orebić.
While there, grab a bite at Adriatic beach bar overlooking the crystal clear water, and relax in the shade of pine trees listening to the sound of crickets. Unless you find crickets annoying;and if you do, a few glasses of their Postup wine will help you forget about crickets and many other things that bother you.
Take a scenic ride to the village of Podobuće through a wine growing area of Postup. A little warning ahead: narrow, winding road with steep cliffs without guard rails, are not for the faint hearted. But breathtaking views along the ride are so worth it!
And the best award for driving the road to Podobuće is at Apartments Farčić (by reservation only), one of my favorite places to eat on the Pelješac peninsula. It’s owned by a local family; the fish and other seafood come directly from the Adriatic Sea, and the veggies are homegrown from their own garden. If you are lucky enough you might even enjoy an extra bonus: lady of the house has a beautiful voice and she occasionally sings traditional Dalmatian songs.
Explore Geta Street in the center of Orebić. This tiny cobblestone street is perfect for a morning stroll. Don’t forget to say hi to Inti if you see her outside, she’s a very friendly dog.
A nearby restaurant Mimbelli has a fantastic food – just in case you smell their cooking and suddenly realize that you are starving.
Keep exploring a little further along the coastal path, and you will end up at Trstenica Beach. Stop here to rest and soak in the views, or get active with swimming, snorkeling or kayaking.
Pelješac is home of the finest wines in Croatia, so wine tasting must be on your to do list. You can’t go wrong with any winery around a village of Potomje, on every corner reds, whites and rosés, oh my!
After a very pleasant wine tasting and cellars tour at Matuško, our designated driver took us to a village of Borak, located ina wine growing area of Dingač. Another narrow, winding, one-lane road that goes right above vineyards. Prepare to be in awe by amazing views, especially if you happen to be there around sunset. The perfect way to end this day is with a delicious seafood dinner at Konoba Braenović.
Since Orebić is surrounded by so many islands, you certainly have to dedicate at least one full day to do some island hopping. Rent a boat at Orebić Boat Rent and head toward Mljet, one of the greenest Croatian islands.
With its lush vegetation, pristine beaches, seawater lakes, and secret caves, Mljet will instantly captivate your heart. Maybe not quite the same way as the beautiful nymph Calypso held Odysseus captive in a cave for seven years, but sure enough to encourage your adventurous soul to explore Odisejeva špilja (Odysseus Cave). Here you can take a swim into the cave and watch the sun rays illuminate it with mesmerizing blue light. If cave swimming is not your thing, how about cliff diving into the turquoise water below?
More than a half of this island’s wild beauty is under protection of Mljet National Park.Hop back on the boat and after docking in Pomena take a short scenic hike to reach the main entrance of NP. Renting a kayak is a fun way to explore Veliko Jezero (Great Lake), gorgeous salt water lake fed by the sea.
I’ve been hiking some usual suspect trails in the USA, Grand Canyon being one of them, so I’m not easily impressed when hiking is concerned. However, hiking to Mount Sv. Ilija was everything I hoped for and more.
There are a few hiking trails to reach the summit (961m above the sea level), we took one with the trailhead in Nakovana. Since it was July, an early start in the morning was very important to beat the summer heat. The trail is well marked, not too steep, regular folks can do it, it’s not just for hardcore hikers. The youngest one in our group was 13, and the oldest was 53 at the time. It took us about 3 hours to get to the top, including an unplanned slow walk with horses we bumped into in a narrow passage right at the beginning of the trail.
The stunning 360 panoramic view from the top is one of a kind and it will surely sweep you off your feet. Only metaphorically of course, unless you don’t watch your step!
Take a short boat ride and spend a day wandering through the maze of cobblestone streets in the Old Town of Korčula. Did you know there is a hot historic debate whether Marko Polo was from Korčula or Venice? Regardless which city you are rooting for in this debate, visit home of Marko Polo, at least for a beautiful terrace view.
After you’ve had a satisfying dose of walking in summer heat, head to Ćakula to refresh and indulge in their signature pasta dish, “žrnovski makaruni”.
And last, but not least, stop by the small pastry shop Cukarin to try “klašun” (aka a little piece of heaven), local specialty biscuit featuring walnuts and rose liqueur.
Rent a bike and take a ride from Orebić via Kucište to Viganj. This stretch of the road is really pretty, so don’t rush and fully enjoy the nature.
Before heading back, take a pit stop in Viganj, a tiny village that is popular amongst windsurfers. Sit back and watchshowoffs at Čiringito beach bar, while munching on some yummy goodies. “Nakovana” bruschetta with goat cheese, walnuts and honey is not to be missed.
Head to Divna Beach for a full day of leisure and tranquility. With a turquoise blue as the waters of the Caribbean, Divna is a must see beach on the Adriatic Coast. Once you take a dip in the refreshing crystal clear water or stretch out on the warm sand, you will understand how Divna completely justifies its name (means wonderful in Croatian). You can reach Divna Beach bycar or by boat.
After the whole day spent on the beach, pizza from La Casa is what’s for dinner.Enjoy it on their terrace with lovely shabby chic decorations and a homey feeling.
Photos and text by Ehli Mavar, lives in Michigan, USA; when not coding, travels the world…