Brac Island Travel Guide: What to Do for a Perfect Vacation
Brac island is the highest island on Adriatic coast and the closest to Split county mainland. The distance between the mainland and the island is only seven nautical miles from Split port.
Regardless of the island’s vicinity to Split, Brac has never become a trendy destination like nearby Hvar island or more famous Dubrovnik town.
Why Visit Brac Island?
Don’t miss to visit this island for many reasons. One of them is its favorable position and easy accessibility either by boat or plane (Brac is the third island after Losinj and Krk to have its airport – Code BWK).
Once you are there, you’ll discover the charm of this unique island with its untouched nature and the rich cultural and historic heritage taking advantage of the many activities this island offers.
- Spend your holidays on Brac beautiful pebble and sandy beaches
- Hire a kayak to explore the island’s coves
- Enjoy windsurfing close to the stunning Zlatni Rat beach in Bol
- Swim, snorkel or dive on daily diving excursion
- Take a tour of the island by bike
- Watch the sunrise or the sunset from Vidova Gora (the highest island peak)
- Discover the history of the island at the Brac museum in Skrip, the oldest and most authentic settlement on the island
- Visit a tradition of stone carving at the stone-masonry school in Pucisca village
- Go rock climbing near Sutivan
- Enjoy the traditional local cuisine flavors of the island like: Brac sheep cheese, fish and lamb specialties, sip the local schnapps or local wines like the famous Plavac
- Brac hotels and private apartments are cheaper comparing with Hvar island
It’s definitely a more cheaper island, and it’s still pristine with fascinating history as it has been inhabited since Neolithic times. It’s definitely an attractive destination of a day trip from Split.
Hospitality and simplicity of the local people will be the trilling experience of any visitor. Don’t worry about the language barrier, because most (and especially young people) speak good English, German and Italian.
Brac Island: What To See?
Upon arriving on the island there are some popular destinations you should visit. If you are arriving by ferry boat the first town will be Supetar, the island capital. On the southern part of the island, town Bol with its famous worldwide Zlatni Rat beach is a must place to be visited.
On the northern side of the island, only 7 km from Supetar, a small tranquil village Splitska will be an ideal getaway for those looking for peaceful spot with some beautiful beaches.
On the west coast of the island facing the nearby Solta island in the deep bay, a small fisherman village Milna is nested, offering some beautiful sandy and pebble beaches scattered on both side of the bay.
On the northern coast of the island there is a small village Pucisca, a famous center of the stone cutter tradition with three large quarries nearby.
From these quarries originate the white Brac stones which quality has made part of many famous buildings around the world. Buildings like Diocletian Palace, White House in Washington, Parliament in Vienna, some parts of Parliament in Budapest, Regent’s palace in Trieste and many others are made from this stone.
The tradition of old stone masonry skill is continued at the Stone Mason School in Pucisca, which is quite a unique school for this part of Europe. The school is opened for the visitors but only in school period from September to May.
This white stone of Brac is one of the symbols of the island, and much of the island is made of stone. People of Brac settled on stone and fell in love with it. The stone on Brac became their roof and table, wall and floor or religious decoration.
The stone was cultivated by generations for centuries. It became the symbol of human persistence and skill, symbolizing the firmness and steadiness of the men of Brac in their struggle for survival on this rocky and poor island.
What To Do On Brac Island?
This unique island with its untouched nature and rich cultural and historic heritage offers different things to do to stay active and experience something new. Most of the activities are related to sea leisure activities. Here are some of most popular activities to do when planning your holidays on the island!
If you wish active holidays full of sports, recreation and the company of young people, come to Bol town on Brac island. Bol is an internationally famous surfers destination and generally the most beautiful place to go surfing on the Adriatic.
In a channel between the islands of Hvar and Brac blows mistral that is stronger on this side of the coast than anywhere else, and that appears every afternoon almost without exception.
Wind levante (east wind) blows during the morning that is ideal for learning and practice so you can find many surfing schools on this part of the coast.
Ideal weather conditions (steady wind all day throughout the season – Mistral 15 – 25 knots) on a large and safe beach dedicated only for this sport is the optimal starting point. Try also Kite Boarding at kite-boarding center situated on one of the most beautiful location on the Adriatic, near Golden Gate (Zlatni rat beach).
Sea kayaking around the Brac island coves is really the best way to experience the island, exploring hidden bays, beaches and small picturesque villages. Sea kayaking and some snorkeling is truthfully the best way to experience the island of Brac.
You can start kayaking tours from two points on Brac island. Big Blue Sport organizes tours from Bol the southern part, while Aldura Sport from Sutivan a small town on Northwest coast of the island (only 12 km from Supetar).
Are you fishing fan? Big game fishing is not just for adrenaline lovers, it is also an experience of untouched nature and a very popular sport which can be enjoyed by all generations.
Croatian coast has been known for centuries as a habitat of one of most desired big game fish – blue-fin tuna. At the beginning of August starts the blue-fin tuna fishing. The average weight is from 70 to 80 kg up to 500 kg. They have also a sailing school course that is a great way to enrich your holiday in Croatia.
Diving on Brac island – Snorkeling and Scuba Diving
If you decide for diving on Brac island than this island offers the best conditions for professional or recreational divers. Air temperature in high season is between 34° C to 38° C with water temperature range from 22° C to 25° C.
There are five diving clubs on the island of Brac, two in Supetar, two in Bol and one in Povlja.
There are two diving clubs in Bol. The Diving Dolphine center is very close to the Golden Cape beach below the Hotel Bretanide. Diving-Dolphin have over 20 beautiful diving locations, steep walls, reefs, wrecks, beautiful caves, wonderful fish and other underwater life that will fascinate everyone who dives here.
The second one is Big Blue Diving club with over 25 years of experience, offering very interesting scuba diving holiday packages.
Mountain biking from Bol all over the island Brac in Croatia is an unforgettable experience. Bike through the hundred year old olive groves, wine yards and thick pine woods all the way to to the highest peak of all Adriatic islands, Vidova gora.
Aldura sport offers tours starting from Supetar and Sutivan to Nerezisce and further to other typical inland villages, Donji Humac, Dracevica, Lozisce. Tracking length is about 24 km and this 3,5 hour route has an easy to moderate level of difficulty.
Another cycling trail from from Skrip to Pucisce. Technical difficulty is moderate and takes two hours. Distance is about 22 km (14 miles).
Walking and Hiking
There is no better way to learn about the nature, history and traditions of the island of Brac than hiking or walking on your own or with experienced guides.
Very nice tour (Obrsje – Blaca) on the south side of the island of Brac, passing uninhabited coastline with beautiful bays and by the famous monastery of Blaca.
Sutivan Olive Oil Path Tour: Hiking from Bol to Nerezisca. Technical difficulty is easy and it takes 3 hours 30 minutes.
Bol – Vidova Gora hiking tour – Technical difficulty is moderate and it take about two hours.
How to get to Brac island?
Getting to Brac has never been complicated. Thanks to island’s proximity to the mainland and to the Split’s harbor there are several ways to travel to Brac.
Because of its closeness to Split town, Brac is the most appealing among Central Dalmatian Island for a day tours. This also the only island with a fully operating airport just few km from Bol town.
During the high season Brac airport has regular flights from Zagreb by Croatia-airlines and regular charter flights from Germany.
By car ferry
Brac island is without any doubt one of the most accessible islands traveling from Split harbor. Traveling to Brac island by ferry is the cheapest and the fastest way. This island is only 7 nautical miles from Split. Jadrolinija company runs the ferry service between Split and Brac.
The closest ferry port is Supetar, on the island’s north coast, almost directly opposite Split town. It takes just over fifty minutes to make the crossing.
This ferry has the highest number of crossing during a day. In high season from June to October 2, it runs fourteen times a day. This is the only car ferry connection between Split port and island of Brac.
As this ferry route is one of the most crowded in July an August, it happens sometimes to have same additional extraordinary crossings. In case the ferries from Split to Brac are too crowded, a good alternative is to drive to Makarska and to take ferry N° 638 (see the schedule below)
Car & passengers ferry line N° 631 Split – Supetar(Brac) – Supetar. (to read this ferry schedule you’ll need Adobe Reader.
Ferry from Makarska to Sumartin (Brac)
If you are coming from Dubrovnik to Split or you visiting Makarska riviera (65 km south of Split), there is a car&passenger ferry from Makarska to Sumartin (the easternmost village on the island – see the above map).
- Car&passenger ferry line N°638 from Makarska – Sumartin Makarska. It take one hour to cross this distance. It sails four times a day in lower season and five times in high season. (1st July to 4th September 2018)
Fast catamaran lines to Brac
If you aren’t on the four wheels traveler, you have more possibilities to travel to Brac. You can always opt for car and passengers ferries or much faster but more expensive, fast catamaran boats.
Split catamaran fast boat connect Split and Brac by two companies, state owned Jadrolinija and privately owned Krilo company. All are only seasonal lines.
- Jadrolinija line N° 9603 from Split to Brac (Bol) and Jelsa (Hvar)
- Jadrolinija line N° 9602 from Split – Milna (Brac) – Hvar town
- 2018 NEW Line Dubrovnik – Korcula – Hvar – Bol (Brac) – Split. Line 9811S
- Krilo catamaran line Split – Milna (Brac) – Hvar – Korcula – Mljet – Dubrovnik
- Krilo catamaran line Split – Hvar – Vis
- N.B Milna village is located on the extreme western part of the island. (See the map above)
If you are getting to Brac island by a car, it will be useful to know the distance in kilometers between the most popular destinations. By car you can arrive on the island only from Split to Supetar and from Makarska to Sumartin (see the above island map!)
- Supetar to Bol – 35 KM
- Supetar to Milna – 20 KM
- Supetar to Sumartin – 40 KM
- Supetar to Pucisca – 25 KM
- Supetar to Mirca – 5 KM
- Supetar to Sutivan – 8 KM
- Supetar to Nerezisca – 8 KM
- Supetar to Splitska – 6 KM
- Bol to Gornji Humac – 11 KM
Moving around Brac island by bus
Getting to Brac island as a foot passenger you shouldn’t worry to much how to get from one place to anther. There are regular bus services to all parts of the island but keep in mind that all services begin or end in Supetar.
What does it mean for you? It means that if you get off from catamaran to Milna and your destination is Bol, than the bus will take you to Supetar first and than to Bol. It will seem a little inconvenient but that’s the way it works.
The bus company that manages island’s internal routes is Autotrans.