Best Things to See in Vis

Vis is one of the most unspoiled islands in Croatia and the furthest permanently inhabited island from the mainland. Having been used as a strategic military base for 40 years when it was closed off to the public, it's largely undeveloped by tourism. There is no fast ferry service to get there and no sprawling resorts, with many visitors arriving on a small-ship cruise, in their own vessel, or on a catamaran as part of a private tour. The island has plenty of history to explore, including relics from the Croatian War of Independence and Roman ruins. But among the best things to see in Vis, most come for its secluded coves and postcard-perfect beaches with brilliant turquoise and emerald-hued waters.
Stiniva cove

Stiniva Cove

Stiniva Cove is often named Croatia’s most beautiful secluded beach, with glistening little white pebbles edged by vivid blue water and framed by dramatic, high cliffs. As it’s not easy to reach, with wild and untamed surroundings, the result is blissful tranquillity. Located in the south of the island, the best way to get there is on a boat tour or a small-ship cruise that includes it on your itinerary. Otherwise, the fit and adventurous can access it on foot, about a 20-minute walk along a goat path from the parking lot in the hamlet of Zuzeca. It’s stunning at any time, but if you can, stick around for sunset when reds, yellows, and oranges are painted across the sky.

Blue Cave Bisevo

The Blue Cave

The Blue Cave is one of the best things to do in Vis, within easy reach from the town of Komiza and located on the nearby small island of Bisevo. A unique and remarkable geomorphological wonder, it’s one of the Adriatic’s most renowned spots of natural beauty and one of the most popular show caves in the world. The only way to experience it is on a boat tour which can be taken from Komiza before hopping into a smaller vessel to get through the narrow entrance. The on-site staff will bring you in to witness the phenomenon that occurs when the sun’s rays enter a crack in the roof of the interior. The rays reflect on the white limestone bottom, illuminating the cave in a surreal blue glow.

Komiza Village

Komiza Village

Located on the western side of Vis, Komiza is a fishing village that lies beneath the nearly 2,000-foot-high Mount Hum. It’s renowned for serving some of the island’s freshest fish and seafood. The waterfront promenade is lined with enticing bars, cafes, and restaurants with menus typically featuring authentic traditional fare based on fresh, local products. On the eastern approach to town, you’ll see a fortress-like monastery complex that dates back to the 17th century. A Renaissance citadel, built in 1585, is located at the southern end of the harbour. Nearby are some of the best beaches along the coast of Komiza Bay with pine trees providing plenty of shade when you need a break from the sun.

Tito's Cave - Blog Section Image

Tito's Cave

As you make your way to the top of Mount Hum, you’ll come to Tito’s Cave. It can be visited on your own or via a Jeep tour focused on the island’s military history. Politically historical, it was the hideout for Josip Broz Tito, the leader of the Communist Party of Yugoslavia and the Resistance to Nazi invasion during World War II. It was used not only as a place to stay from June through August 1944 but as Tito’s headquarters for directing diplomatic activities with the Allies and orchestrating operations to liberate Croatia’s coast and islands. There are two “rooms,” one of which includes his desk, a chair, and a phone. The other served as his sleeping quarters.

Church on Mount Hum

Mount Hum

If you visit Tito’s Cave, you won’t be far from the top of Mount Hum, so it makes sense to continue to what marks the highest point on the island. One of the best things to see in Vis, from nearly 2,000 feet high, it’s an ideal vantage point for a panoramic view. From here, you’ll see the town of Komiza, its charming streets and harbour, the endless blue of the Adriatic, and the nearby Bisevo and Svetac islands. There’s also a little chapel to check out. For a scenic workout, instead of ascending in a vehicle, hike on your own or join a hiking tour. If you happen to be here at dusk, you’ll enjoy a fabulous sunset too.

View of Vis Town

Vis Town

Set along a horseshoe-shaped bay, Vis is tranquil and atmospheric, providing a great base for those seeking a more peaceful setting along with opportunities to explore the island’s history and nature. The prime historic attraction here is the Austrian-built battery which is surrounded by fortifications. It houses the archaeological museum which displays artefacts dating back to 400 BC when the colony of Issa was founded here. The crown jewel is a bronze head of Artemis, with most other items relating to the fishing and wine industries that have been part of life on Vis for more than two thousand years. As you stroll the narrow lanes winding uphill from the waterfront you’ll see many 17th-century homes as well.

Stoncica Bay

Stoncica Bay

The settlement of Stomcica sits along Stoncica Bay, approximately 5.6 miles from the town of Vis. Easily reached by road, the protected bay is nearly a mile deep and has a cape that hosts a lighthouse in an octagonal stone tower of the same name that was built in 1865. There’s also a picturesque sandy beach in a secluded cove that has a gentle slope that makes it ideal for families with children. With the sea barely reaching waist-level non-swimmers and children who want to wade and just splash around will find it perfect. There’s a restaurant here with an appealing ambiance, known for its menu of gourmet organic dishes with an extensive selection of high-quality wine and other drinks.

Vineyard in Vis

Wineries

Vis has a rich winemaking history, a tradition that dates back to at least 300 BC. That’s when a Greek writer wrote about its most famous grape, plavic mali, which is primarily grown in Croatia’s Dalmatia region. He noted that “compared to all others it was the very best wine he’d ever tried.” The “golden age” of viticulture here was during the late 19th and early 20th century when Vis wine was exported across the Austro-Hungarian Empire, resulting in a period of great prosperity with many of the town’s homes and buildings constructed. When visiting the island today, a tour of the wineries brings the chance to taste that same savoury red alongside others like Vugava, a honey-flavoured white wine.

Discover Vis by Cruise

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