Quiet little village in a quiet gulf, that's the first impression of Veli rat settlement which is in short distance from its more famous light house. On evening there's little of activity going on, but then again, that's the case for most of Dugi otok. Old locals bowling, some buzz from terraces of restaurants, boats and yachts getting to secure harbour, little chats among locals on benches at streets, clothes drying, the noise of TV from rooms, cats fighting on stone paved streets.
All takes little walk to cover its most interesting part built by native houses, and in their centre, there is St. Ante's church with small square.
Further, new houses rose and became appartments to rent during season and will suggest lonely winters.
Over the gulf, another quiet village, Verunić, can be seen from Veli rat. We have only visited it shortly and found its main restaurant among the most extravagant on the island serving fresh sea food which would include delicacy such as sea urchins. I admit, we only had a glass of wine there :)
An interesting water form appeared after last Ice age on Dugi otok - Mir lake at Telašćica, whose waters are shallow, salty and not entierly disconnected from nearby sea as its water from underground cracks fills the basin during tide. It can be noted that lake's salinity is different - though variable, it's normally higher, and higher is also its summer temperature when maximums were recorded at 33 Celsius degrees! Simple as that, its rather extreme water environment provides home of few specialized species, of entierly different composition than those from sea.
Parts of lake bottom are covered by silt which is believed to have healing properties and from time to time enthusiast swimmer will cover themself entierly, just his eyes let out, but in general the lake attracts crowds for its rather ordinary beach. It can be crowded like at swimming pool at its northern most edge where there is nearest connection with gulf that unloads tourists from tour boats.
Ah, and there is 'donkey beach' there, so that must be another reason for its popularity.
Only after 10 minutes easy hike above the lake, you can get to the edge of cliffs where you watch some entierly different scenery.
Sali is the biggest town on Dugi otok and somewhat its 'capital' with small port for boats and yachts; doctor, tourism office, library and restaurants and shops are here, also the fish processing factory. It can also serve as a starting point for exploring the island if you arrive on foot by public transport - there's catamaran connection between Zadar and Dugi otok here and its only few kilometers distance to Park of Nature Telašćica (closest town to park anyways). Rent a bike and go, there're complex natural settings awaiting behing the town's edge.
As cultural capital of Dugi otok it hosts events in its little but eye-catching library by waterfront - these are on more intimate scale, a delicatesse of events, perhaps, while the broader public is most enertained at annual summer festival - Saljske užance. Their donkey races are fun event, and tovareča mužika (donkey music) is their autochton form...
For swimming there is nice rocky beach with simple access to water below Sali hotel on the other side of toen, at one its secluded quiet gulfs with no boat traffic.
This is one of most frequented spots on Dugi otok on its North Western side, facing open seas. It's key building is 42 meters high light house, locally named Punta Bjanka and apparently the highest one at the Adriatic.
While from the shores below you can watch the blood colored sunsets and wild waves, there are also few good swimming spots here and there and thick pine forests covering great patches of the area. In future, there is supposed to be a camp area somewhere here, but for today, we saw few people camping wild, even families with kids, modern nomads.
The scenery here is trully beautiful. You can walk along the coast few kilometers with little other people as you go further from the light house. One can swim dressed or naked, nobody will care about that.
As further you go... you'll come across rusty left overs of once-there-was-ship and concentration of trash floating from who knows where. The sea current delivered it to Dugi otok at Veli rat where it's exposed to open seas. Later by night approaching, there are fishing boats enetering horizon and they travel further for better catch, winds are getting stronger.
The nice little white pebbles meet rocks by the water edge. I take them handful to bring them home, as when they rub between eachoter, the sound produced will always suggest warm evenings spent at that magic shore, with magic sunsets and scents.
This is a village or small town on North East side od Dugi Otok whose main charm lies in its friendly locals and proximity to some of nicest (and some lonely) beaches on the island - where the rock is predominant, but there are as well gravel ones. Hardly better place for a family, where one likes stone and other likes easier passage into water - and there're plenty of pine leaves too so the shade and air quality are both highest.
Božava is one of oldest settlements once inhabited by Illyrian tribes and then further developed throughout different landlords until today when despite its small-ness it is one of the key places of tourism on Dugi otok with several services available for visitors (bus connection, small port in secluded gulf piercing into heart of town, small shop, diving centre, a hotel, a few restaurants, appartments to rent, tourist information centre, post office, police, doctor).
Beside sea, there are plenty of olive groves around it, pines and few fields and there is a path connecting it with other villages in the area, so there are good chances for long walks. Gardens around houses are basic but well tendered, and passion fruits, citruses and vines were at almost every doorsteps. This is generally calm place to be - only in the evenings there will be everyone on promenade by the sea and terraces will get full of people on dinner or drinks, while other ones will be heading to hotel's terrace to dance on those ever present Dalmatian melodies, sometimes spiced with some non-autochtonus tunes. But then there's post-season, which is again quieter time, yet still different than one would expect it winter.
Given its small size, the village can never pack too many people in.
Some say it's the nicest beach on the Adriatic, given the fine white sands and lovely scenery in the backdrop. Being located in a quet, secluded gulf near Veli rat village at the Northern side of Dugi otok, it can be often best place for undisrupted swimming when rest of the island is exposed to winds and wild waves. Therefore, it will also provide natural shelter for boats and yachts which will anchor a little further from the beach, some time after rocky bottom will begin.
Given its natural properties, the place is popular with all kinds of visitors but it seems families with little kids are dominating. A few bars sell cold drink and let play music, sometimes loud. A tourist train from Božava will unload their hotel guests, adding more people to the place. There is some shadow in near forest, but not directly by the water. If you want to lay on the sand and get some shelter from sun, you can rent parasols which are typical product of globalization... on every sand beach of the world the same I guess.
In the main season you'll have to pay for the parking as well if you come by car. Take a 10 minutes walk along the coast and you'll eventually reach another shadeless beach with lovely pebbles on a strip of land connecting it with tiny pocket islet.
Stunning cliffs at Telašćica reaching near 160 meters above sea level at maximum are probably the single most deciding factor for people to take a trip to Dugi otok when they're in region (Zadar - North Dalmatia). The rocks dominate Southern tip of the island and it had been declared Park of Nature and Importand Bird Area (IBA) due two kinds of falcons residing here plus there are few other endemic and endangered species of both flora and fauna known in the area.
It can be a great day trip here from Zadar if you go by a boat on organized tour, or better yet... take a trip to Dugi otok individually and stay here as long as you wish, because on tour your time is limited. You could go either by ferry and car from Zadar to Brbinj, then drive to South and pay entry to Park, or... take a catamaran from Zadar to Sali which is only a few kilometers away. From Sali go by bike or scooter, you could even walk if you're enthusiast hiker. Of course, if you can choose come anytime but main season when it's most crowded and also hottest.
This is trully one of the most spectacular images of rocks meet sea in Croatia, and in wider region. A word of warning: never climb cliffs; you can fall anytime and/or the rocks can break at times. Nevertheless, I saw few people who ignored that - obviously their desire for explicit photos was greater than their safety.
If you take a walk to lake Mir (Peace) and continue up towards southern side of the island, you will reach a few spots from which this lovely view can be observed.
I walked close but not too close to the edge and enjoyed fabulous views.
From left to right: open sea towards Italy, Telascica bay, lake Mir.
there are lots of fishes waiting for you to catch them.but i have to tell you, that there are permisions to go fishing.i have anual one, but i think there are daily or monthly permisions for fishing.