Sail around the Elaphiti Islands in Croatia on your own yacht
‘’Oh, we will be sailing around the Elaphiti Islands in Croatia.” Can you imagine that being your answer when your friends ask you what you will be doing this summer?
After reading about this archipelago situated close to Dubrovnik, you will know for sure, these islands are next on your agenda to visit, and what better way to do this than on your private yacht!
History of the Elaphiti archipelago
There are six islands (and many more little islets) comprising the Elaphiti archipelago and your captain will make minute-by-minute adjustments in the itinerary based on weather, sea conditions, and the presence of other boats, so you will have a completely off-the-beaten experience during your trip. When stopping at the different islands and beaches, you will have the opportunity to explore the tiny towns and villages that offer an impressive history.
Very few people live in these towns, so they have a really traditional, untouched, serene feel to them. Be sure to explore the ruined castles, windy mazes of cobblestone streets, ancient stone homes, and farms of olive trees and grapes scattered around each of these towns whose names you likely won’t find in any guide book!
The car-free island of Lopud has one of the prettiest settlement in the area, composed of stone houses surrounded by exotic gardens and overlooked by ruined fortresses. The first sight when sailing into the harbor is the immense sea wall and the 30 meter high bell tower of Lopud´s 15th-century Franciscan Monastery, beckoning you to come take a look. The only part of the monastery that is open to the public is St Mary-of-the-Cave Church, built in 1483 and worth a visit for its 16th-century altar piece and intricately carved choir chairs.
Further along the seaside promenade is shady Ɖorđić-Mayneri Park , laid out in the late 19th-century by the great-granddaughter of Dubrovnik´s last rector. Botanical specimens from around the world include North African date palms, North American magnolias and Tasmanian eucalyptus trees. Dedicated to the patron saint of sailors, St Nicholas´ Church attests to the times when Lopud was an important seafaring center. Positioned on the waterfront, this 1482 church is modest in content, but provides an airy environment for a quiet moment.
Photo Copyright: Lopurd Tour Guide Rosy
Visit Your Black Horizon Art Pavilion
It´s also worth seeking out Your Black Horizon Art Pavilion, set in an orchard of cypress and olive trees, on the edge of the settlement. This amalgamation of contemporary art and architecture was moved here after originally being presented at the Venice Biennale in 2005. Inside is a light installation that showcases the color changes on the horizon over a 24-hour period, shortened into a 15-minute looping LED display.
Photo Copyright: Port Magazine
The beautiful sandy Šunj beach
After exploring the island, your captain will bring you to the beautiful sandy Šunj beach, where a little bar serves the best grilled fresh fish you have ever tasted. The crew will have set up a picnic for you, complete with umbrellas for some shade, to enjoy your lunch at this perfect location. Stay a little longer and enjoy the peaceful atmosphere while sipping on your favorite cocktail or a glass of local wine the crew handpicked for you!
If you feel adventurous, talk to your captain about showing you some of the cliffside caves around the Elaphiti Islands. Most of these caves you will have to swim into, so be prepared to jump off the yacht and swim to see the beautiful green and blue water that quite literally glow when the sun hits them properly. The water might be chilly but you can dry off in the sun on deck afterward en route to the next island!
Photo Copyright: Croatia.hr
As the smallest of the islands, Kolocep can be considered as providing the ultimate in tranquility. Car-free, this island is a great place to relax and take leisurely walks on the paths that crisscross the island through its pine forests, before winding down for a few hours on one of the island’s serene sandy beaches.
If you are an avid swimmer, you will delight in the island’s crystal clear waters, exploring the coves and sandy bays that have arisen due to the indented nature of the island. The Blue Cave on the island can be visited by swimming to and in it and while on anchor here, the crew will take out all the water toys for an afternoon of fun in the sea. Maybe you would like to kayak to the cave, or explore the underwater world using the snorkeling gear!
It is time for some history
If you think it is time for some history before dinner, there are a number of interesting churches on the island, some of which stem as far back as the 9th century. These include the Church of Saint Sergius, the Church of Saint Nicholas and the Church of the Holy Trinity. All beautiful spots for a unique picture on the Elaphiti islands.
After spending time on the island you will be welcomed back onboard by your chief stewardess, who will have cocktails ready for you and your loved ones to enjoy while watching the sunset. All you have to do is get dressed for dinner and make plans for another unforgettable day tomorrow.
Photo Copyright: Wikipedia
Šipan is the largest of the main Elaphiti islands. It was a favorite with the Dubrovnik aristocracy, who built summer houses on the island, the remains of which can still be seen today. The two main villages on the island, Sudjuradj and Šipanska Luka are both centered around an inviting bay. There are several churches on the island, including the 11th century Saint Peter’s Church and the Church of the Holy Spirit which was built in 1569. You can visit the village of Šipanska Luka, which has the remains of a Roman villa and a 15th- century Gothic duke’s palace.
Lunch at Kod Marka restaurant
If you have worked up an appetite from all this sightseeing and would like to have lunch on the island you can head over to the Kod Marka restaurant, which serves wonderfully fresh dishes and seafood specialties. Maybe you are looking for a chilled out afternoon, you can head over to the BOWA Beach Club and lounge about in one of their cabanas, on the terrace or in the restaurant, sampling their 5-course tasting menu. Or you can ask the crew to bring you back onboard, where the chef will have all your favorites ready to enjoy while discussing your perfect stay at the Elaphiti islands!
Photo Copyright: Konoba-Kod-Marka.com
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