After arriving in Croatia Part 1, exploring the surroundigs and spending the following days with trips to Krka National Park Part 2, the Cetina canyons Part 3 and the coastline towards the south Part 4, we decided to go on with our last highlight – the pirate castle on top of Omis.
Day trip to the pirate castle
Actually there are two pirate castles in Omis. One is accessible very easily, because it lies in the city – Mirabella fortress. You can walk there within less than 10 minutes, if you start from the city centre. The other one, as I mentioned in Part 3, is on top of a small mountain. There are two ways to get there. You can either walk to this pirate castle through the forest from behind the right tunnel or start from the opposite site of the mountain and walk the easier track. The easier one takes a lot longer though. It is about 1,5 – 2 hours. The track through the forest is faster but harder. It takes about 45 min – 1 hour.
What to bring and what to expect
First of all I have to admit, that we did not know anything about the castle and the track. I imagined it to be easy (I have read the opposite on the internet 😉 ), because I once climbed a big vulcano called “Rinjani” – 3726 m – on a “3 day track” in Indonesia during my one year travels. But I was naive. I have to say, that even though reaching the top does not take that long, it is still quite hard to do, especially in summer time. I recommend to start your trip quite early.
The temperature is way lower in the morning. We took the shorter but harder way, because the forest provides some shade. Make sure you bring good shoes, 1,5 liters of water for each person and something to eat. The track is a lot of fun and it is a good task for hiking beginners. What waits for you at the top is really cool!
The pirate castle history
The pirate castle we visited is called Starigrad fortress. Historically it was a small castle for the citizens of Omis to hide away whenever invaders came. They built the pirate castle in the 15th century and used it for defending themselfs against the Turks. It was a good location to shoot or throw stones from above. Nowerdays it is a nice attraction for tourists and a great lookout. You have a 360° degree view. You can see the Cetina river, the canyons Part 3 and the coastline Part 4 as well as Brac and Omis. It is just wonderful!
The view and the prices
I did not even think about that fact, that you would have to pay to see a old and unused pirate castle, but you have to. It is about two Euro. The vendor has some cold drinks up there for sale, which is quite nice after the hike. You will be suprised about the inside and the views you get. I felt like a little boy walking around the pirate castle. I just missed a good hat, an eyepatch and a pirate sword 🙂
After we were finished with our last hightlight, our trip to Croatia nearly came to an end. On the last couple days we went to Split and several beaches to relax and enjoy some quiet time. In my opinion Croatia is definitely worth a longer trip, because there is so much to explore and it is just a wonderful country as far as we have seen. And we had to miss out on a lot of beautiful sights like Dubrovnik, the islands, Plitvice National Park and much more. Still I have not seen anything comparable withing Europe just yet. Maybe that is why it is getting more popular every year. So pack your bags and get going, before it gets to overloaded!
During this trip I have learned something again. Sometimes you do not need to go that far to experience real beauty. Maybe you just have to open your eyes and recognize what is around the corner…
Read more about our trip to Split