Blue Lake

Day tour to Dalmatian Hinterland Vol. 3. - Makarska Hinterland

Planning to be more active and explore your vacation destination? Why not take a day tour to Makarska Hinterland and discover multitude activities you can partake in.

Table of Contents

Perfect way to spend a day or two while vacationing on Makarska Riviera is to take a day tour to Makarska hinterland. Just across Biokovo mountain you will find beautiful terra incognita that will stimulate your every sense. To reach this region you can take the scenery road and making your way up the serpentines you will be rewarded with breathtaking views on Makarska Riviera and Adriatic Sea.

Makarska and Bikovo mountain

Makarska on the slopes of Biokovo mountain, source: Pixabay

Simpler route to conquer natural barrier that divides the hinterland from the sea, Biokovo, is through St. Elijah tunnel. Greater urban centers of the region are Imotski and Vrgorac.


Some 40-minute drive from Makarska picturesque town of Imotski nicely nestled next to the world-famous Blue Lake. In last couple of years region around town of Imotski is turning into a much-sought tourist destination, especially among guests looking to spend their vacation away from crowded beaches and tourist centers. For all looking to experience authentic local food and excellent wine and be surrounded with almost untouched nature this is a place to visit.

Church of St. Francis, Imotski

Church of St. Francis, Imotski,author: Stjepko Krehula, source: Wikimedia Commons

First mention of Imotski as a municipal center was in 950. AD by byzantine emperor Constantine VII Profirogenet. After that Imotski plays a significant role in Croatian medieval history as a border town to the ever-growing Ottoman threat.

What to see in Imotski?

Best time to visit Imotski is in Spring and Autumn when temperature is still not too hot for you to enjoy a full day of exploring the town and its surroundings.

Blue and Red Lake are the most recognizable landmarks of Imotski and surrounding region. These karst lakes were most likely formatted after a collapse of underground caves.

Blue Lake

Blue Lake is situated right next to the town of Imotski and there is a path leading down to the bottom. Water level at its peak can reach up to 90 meters thanks to snow melting on surroundings mountains. Blue Lake

Blue Lake,author: Dreizung, source: Wikimedia Commons

Usually by the end of the summer the bottom of the lake is dry due to shortage of water coming from surrounding mountains and underground rivers and streams. At the time of dry lake bed two teams, Elves and Werewolves, organize a traditional football match. Fabulous photographs can be taken from fortress Topana that overlooks the lake.

There is a manmade path that leads to the bottom of the lake so you can go for a swim in warmer months.

Blue Lake

Path to the Blue Lake, author: Modzzak,source: Wikimedia Commons

Red Lake

Some 1,5 kilometers from Blue Lake you will find Red Lake. Its name came from the steep reddish cliffs. Cliffs tower more than 240 meters from the water level and the explored depth of the lake is 530 meters. In contrast to the Blue Lake, Red Lake waters are only accessible to skilled mountaineers and speleologist and with the right kind of equipment. But that does not mean that you cannot stop by for a visit and admire it hypnotizing waters from afar.

Red Lake

Red Lake, author: Yacht Rent, source: Wikimedia Commons

There is also local legend associated with the origin of the Red Lake. Arrogant and rich man, named Gavan, with his family had a beautiful house on the exact spot where the lake is now. Legend said that one night a beggar came to his door asking for shelter and food. Gavan and his family in their arrogance turned him down and sent him away. At that moment the ground shook violently and a hole opened underneath the house and engulfed them all. The rocks of the lake are red due to the blood of dead Gavan and his family.

Red Lake

Red Lake, author: Peter1936F, source: Wikimedia Commons

Topana Fortress

High above modern town of Imotski, Topana Fortress offers an unparalleled view of the surrounding area.

Topana Fortress

Topana Fortress, author: Saxum , source: Wikimedia Commons

Fortress was built probably in the early 10thcentury and during the rich history of the region it played a significant role and in nowadays it is a prominent landmark of Imotski region and a place from you will be able to take great photos of Imotski and the whole region.

Vrljika River

Vrljika river flows through a beautiful and almost untouched nature that is ideal for hiking or cycling.

Vrljika River

Vrljika River,author: Modro jezero , source: Wikimedia Commons

In Vrljika you can find an endangered softmouth trout also known as Adriatic trout. While enjoying the serene scenery be sure to visit the Green Cathedral, a traditional location of the celebration of Feast of Assumption.

What to do in Imotski?

Best way to explore Imotski and its surroundings is on bicycle. There are several bicycle routes you can take and each one will reveal you the beauty of the region.

Cycling vacation

Cycling, source: Pixabay

We suggest participating in Imota bike & wine bicycle tour that is held every year in June. This bicycle tour is ideal for getting to know this region since it has several stops for sightseeing and getting to know the oenological offer of Imotski vineyards and winemakers. There is an entry fee so you will need to register in order to participate.

What to eat in Imotski?

Culinary trademark of Imotski does not differs from other places of Dalmatian hinterland.


Prosciutto, cheese and meat dishes are as common here as anywhere in the region. But if you choose to visit Imotski be sure to stop by village Zmijavci and check their annual Frog nights in which you have the opportunity to taste locally prepared frog dishes. Eels and river crabs are also on the menu. So bon appétit!


Known mainly for excellent prosciutto and strawberries Vrgorac is a picturesque small town. Some 45 minutes’ drive from Makarska this is ideal place for a day trip.


View on Vrgorac from Gradina Fortress,author: Dreizung , source: Wikimedia Commons

What to see in Vrgorac?

Vrgorac Town Park

Town Park dates from the late 19thcentury and it is quite unique in Dalmatian Hinterland. Enriched with traditional Mediterranean trees and plants and with paths and stairs that creates a magical world that leaves no one indifferent. Best time to visit the Town Park is during summer months when numerous cultural events, concerts and plays take place in the park.

Vrgorac Fortresses

Tin Ujevic Tower

Tin Ujevic Tower,author: Mario Žamić , source: Wikimedia Commons

The rich history of Vrgorac is best depicted by a defensive fortresses that still can be found in the city. Most of them serve a more peaceful purpose in modern day. Most prominent fortress is the fortress from the 15th century which proudly rises above the city. From it you get an unapparelled view over the town and the surroundings which is perfect for taking fabulous photos.

What to do in Vrgorac?

Vrgorac region is ideal for those seeking more active vacation. Bicycling and hiking accompanied with visitations to local farms and vineries are among most sought out.


Hiking, source: Pixabay

There is a network of hiking trails and bicycle routes stretching through exceptional landscape diversity of Vrgorac region.

What to eat in Vrgorac?

Famous for its strawberries, Vrgorac also offers a multitude of other delicacy.


Strawberries, source: Pixabay

Among rich offer in gastronomy, we set a side goat cheese, snails with shallots, dry meat wrapped in lamb entrails and game delicacies.

Where to stay?

Ideal starting point for a day tour to Makarska Hinterland are some of the most luxurious villas on Makarska Riviera.

Luxury Villa Seductiva with Pool

Luxury Villa Seductiva with Pool

Luxury Villa Seductiva with Pool

After a long day spend exploring you will be glad that Luxury Villa Seductiva with Pool is welcoming you with a sauna and jacuzzi. Here you can relax to the fullest and after maybe even watch a good movie on villa`s home cinema.

Luxury Villa Seductiva with Pool

Luxury Villa Seductiva with Pool

Accommodating up to 7 guests villa is perfect for a relaxed vacation.

Villa Azul Grande with Heated Pool

Villa Azul Grande with Heated Pool

Villa Azul Grande with Heated Pool

Ideal for bigger groups or couple of families travelling together Villa Azul Grande with Heated Pool features 9 bedrooms with en-suite bathroom and can comfortably accommodate up to 18 guests.

Villa Azul Grande with Heated Pool

Villa Azul Grande with Heated Pool

From pool deck you can enjoy spectacular view over the sea and listen to the crickets in the pines.

Luxury Villa Belmare with Pool I

Luxury Villa Belmare with Pool I

Luxury Villa Belmare with Pool I

Accommodating up to 6 guests Luxury Villa Belmare with Pool I is great for a family vacation.

Luxury Villa Belmare with Pool I

Luxury Villa Belmare with Pool I

Villa features sauna and a fitness room. Villa Belmare has a twin so if you are travelling as a bigger family or group, you can rent the other villa too. Both villas can accommodate up to 12 guests.

Luxury Villa Belmare with Pool I

Luxury Villa Belmare with Pool I

We hope that our blogs will entice you to plan your next vacation in Dalmatia and that you will take a day trip and discover the inland of this beautiful region.

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