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“A really surprising and interesting place”

Nature Park Biokovo
Ranked #1 of 37 things to do in Makarska
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Reviewed July 12, 2013

On the way up to the mountain peak at Sveti Jure, the Biokovo Park is a really surprising gem that in parts you would never know was so close to the sea or just how high up you are at times. at first the road passes through thick pine forest and narrows once above the trees zig zagging up the side of the mountain. It then flattens out into what seems to be a valley, where you can come across all manner of animals casually wandering along the road, without a care in the world. Locals come up to pick herbs that grow in abundance and the parks beauty comes alive. Worth a visit on it's own, or as we were, passing through to the top of the mountain and back.

2  Thank MikeFromKent
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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83 - 87 of 191 reviews

Reviewed July 2, 2013

Very beautiful nature. Recomend to everyone. Be sure to take some water with you. The view is breathtaking.

2  Thank Kenneth B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed June 1, 2013

Make certain to check the weather before you head up into the Park. Even if the weather in town is fine, the weather at Sv. Jure can be cold and rainy. Today my trip to Sv. Jure was cancelled completely because of weather. However, when the weather is good, the views of the Adriatric from the top can't be beat! Fabulous! Take water and food and there is only 1 toilet in the Park. Just be prepared!

4  Thank Christmas2010
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 22, 2012

St Jure accesible by car but quite complicated route, approximately 1hour 25 kilometers, admission fee is 40 kn per person please take into account weather condition

3  Thank Radomir B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 21, 2012

Biokovo.com (E-mail: park-prirode-biokovo@st.htnet.hr) shows great photos and offers a good interactive MAP: click on "Map" (not "Satellite"). Although there is a way to hike from town up the mountain, my hubby and I didn't try it. Instead, we drove up the road into the park. From the biokovo.com map, on the list of icons, click on "entrance to the park" then zoom in. To get there from Makarska (Villa Lelas was a great place to stay), drive south on 8, turn left on 512 (ask your lodging host: toward what villages, since there are road signs), then watch for the park sign and turn left to enter the park. See the white road on the map, into the park? First it meanders (through the forest), then there are long sharply-angled switchbacks (up the mountain face), then the switchbacks end and the road goes north. Keep this in mind as you read on.

At the park ENTRANCE, the ranger was very helpful, showing us the road on the map, the key points, trail heads, detailed hike descriptions. No fewer than 14 pictorial signs (my favorite--universal language!) prohibit digging up plants, picking flowers, sitting on tree branches and petting birds (see for yourselves), harassing wildlife, walking off trails, off-leash dogs, camping, fires, and more (see photo #1 of 13).

The ROAD is paved and the surface is smooth and in good condition. At first, the road is two lanes wide through relatively level forest (see photo #2 of 13).

Then it narrows to the width of roughly 1.5 car (see photo #9 of 13) as switchbacks go up the face of the mountain. The long, straight parts of the switchbacks are often lined with reassuring boulders, stone blocks, or a rail on the downhill side. The hairpin turns are perhaps 2-3 lanes wide, with room for cars traveling in opposite directions to pass one another, and with room to park and (on clear days) admire the view of islands in the Adriatic.

Past the switchbacks, even though the road becomes more level, it remains narrow with imperfect edges, so one car might have to back up to a wide spot to let another car pass in the opposite direction. We drove only as far as the info stone hut, where we parked to go on a hike.

HIKE The trail we took leads to a mountain top, but we never intended to reach the top. We just wanted to walk for a couple of hours, out and back. From the info stone hut, we crossed the paved road, then walked along the gravel road, past the toilets, and beyond. At the end of the straight part of the gravel road, we found the first trail marker: a red paint circle with white paint inside the circle (see photo #10 of 13). We looked around for the next trail marker, walked to it, and looked around for the next trail marker, and did it again and again. There is mostly no detectable trail (and the park entrance sign prohibits walking off trails?). We walked over and between and around rocks, on dirt and grass and around bushes and trees, from trail marker to trail marker. Be careful not to twist an ankle! We were glad to have given up more driving in exchange for walking and getting a feel for the land, a close look at wild flowers, stone huts, and sinkhole gardens along the way. It's austere and not as postcardly breathtaking as alpine landscapes, but wilderness boosts inner peace, the flowers have captivating details for macro photos, and you never know when you might glimpse wildlife (we didn't).

One of the loose, domesticated, stocky horses grazing near the road was spontaneously cuddly and the new foal was adorable.

We drove back down the way we came up.

I think we were lucky to visit on a weekday in May, when there were not many cars, buses, and bikes, so we had to back up only once, and it was not on the switchbacks. If I had to do it again, all I would change would be to add a horse ride. This would best be done by staying not just one, but two nights in Makarska. That said, horse rides are available in many other places around Croatia, and if I wanted to add one extra night in Croatia, it would be at Linden Tree Retreat and Ranch (great place to ride horses) or in a mountain hut in either Paklenica Nat'l Park or the Northern Velebit Nat'l Park, not in Makarska.

Biokovo Nature Park is unfortunately not covered in the Lonely Planet guide to Croatia.

13  Thank Factual
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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