Bekavci - Ivandić building complex
Situated in the Donji Kričak area is a representative example of folk architecture with its anthological construction features.
An eerie gorge and canyon on a rocky plateau. Archaeological remains of Neolithic Balkan man from the period from 6000 to 2000 BC. An example of rural folk architecture with draw-wells, olive mills and bread furnaces which grace this unique area, once the site of numerous attacks and brigand encounters.
Together with its manor houses of Ursići, Brkulji, Tomaši, Drinova, Bartulovići. These manor houses appear to have stopped time, being stone houses actually situated both in the stone and on it. There are four beautiful manor houses that have been preserved until the present from the long abandoned village of Drinova with its rich architecture, situated close to the paleontological area of Drinova.
The French, during their domination (1808-1813) constructed a road along Dalmatia - from Obrovac to Boka Kotorska in a very short period of time. Today this road is known as “Napoleon's Road" or the "French Road" and was built primarily thanks to Napoleon's military commander and duke of Dubrovnik, August Marmont, who is remembered the history of Croatia for the numerous advanced measures he implemented within the Croatian region as military commander of Dalmatia and deputy of the Illyrian regions. Here this road would have connected the Makarska Littoral with the French Road that passed through the hinterland of the mountain Biokovo, in direction Grabovac – Zagvozd- Župa- Rašćani over the Nevista and Poletnica (Brela Gornja – Upper Brela) passes, . Local people too were involved obliged to work for the road’s construction process and were paid in food. Unfortunately, due to the withdrawal of the French military forces, this part of the road remained unfinished although is possible to see under passes Nevista and Poletnica from the valuable parts of the dry-stone walls that surrounded it.
Ruins of the Herceg’s fortress
On the part of Biokovo above Brela, under a cliff are the ruins of a structure which is known among the people as Herceg fort. This was once a structure that only had the upper port and just one window whilst the path leading to it was a causeway created by putting plates one next to another. So, when walking on them everything rustled and Erceg Stipan, who was in the fortress, could hear everyone. The Ottomans wanted to seize the fortress of Stipan so they ransacked it for months, hoping to torment the occupant by hunger as they were unable to conquer the fortress in an inaudible way over those plates. One day, it is said, Erceg Stipan was sitting outside and slicing cheese. Half of the cheese rolled down, shattering and falling on top of the Ottomans. They then withdrew saying: “How can we possible exhaust him with hunger when he beats us with cheese.” So the Ottomans gave up seizing the Stipan’s fortress.
Tower on Poletnica
(387m) significant historical locality with the rests of Turkish tower from the 16th and the 17th century, famous for numerous clashes with the Turks. In one of those fights Hasan-aga Arapović was killed. He was Hasan-aginica's husband, from the popular ballad Hasanaginica.
The Church of our Lady of Carmel
Situated in Soline, a valuable monument of the baroque architecture in harmony with the surroundings. Since it was built in 1715 in the appreciation of the victory against the Turks, it is also known as the Church of Lady of Victory.
Lady of Health Church (the old one)
Situated in Brela Gornja, the church dates from the beginning of the 18th century, with the rustic form of Dalmatian baroque, characteristic for Dalmatian hinterland.
The Church of St. Ilija
Situated in Ribičići, in the foothill of the mountain Biokovo, built in 1906, although on the same foundations there was previously built a church in 1760.
The Church of St. Stjepan
Situated in Donje Selo, built in 1897, although on that location there was twice previously built a church. It is a modern church of high cultural value. St. Stjepan is the patron of Brela.
The Chapel of St. Kajo
Located on Nevista and mentioned for the first time back in 1768. There are a number of legends about the area surrounding this chapel. From the saddle moving west was a 1.5 m high cross as this was the place where the Virgin Mary appeared to the inhabitants of Brela, warning them that they would be attacked by the people of Senj. She not only warned them but also saved them by killing the people of Senj with hemp. Even today we can still see the tombs under St. Kajo and in the direction of the French road. That cross has been kissed by passers-by both on their arrival and on their departure from the area that is during every time they pass St. Kajo. Above St. Kajo is a plate in the form of a cart. Older people used to forbid children from passing over it as they were convinced that it was a place where fairies played and were afraid that they might take their children away.
The Biokovo mountain
The oldest given name of the Biokovo Mountain is its Greek name – Adrion. It divided Dalmatia in the Littoral part and the Dalmatia Hinterland. Biokovo's highest peak is Sv. Jure - St George (1762 m). It is characterized by varied vegetation that includes 2274 herbal species among which numerous endemic species of which the most famous is the so called "Biokovsko zvonce" – Biokovo bell (Edraianthus pumilio) The fauna too is diverse so we can find wolves(Canis lupus), boars (Sus crofa) here. Since 1964 it was again populated by the Balcan chamois (Rupicapra rupicapra balcanica L.) and since 1968 the by European mouflon (Ovis orientalis musimon Pallas). We can also find the Golden Eagle, the Short-toed Snake-eagle, partridges, the Fox and many other animal species here. The only poisonous snake to be found in the Biokovo region is the horned viper. The botanic garden in Kotišina is undoubtedly worth visiting. In 1981 it was proclaimed as a Natural Park. People say that the most beautiful part of Biokovo is precisely this part under Brela.
Presentation centre of Brela Gornja
Visit the Biokovo exhibition in both Croatian and English. The Presentation centre is located in a building that was constructed back in 1908 by the Bekavac brothers.
Nevistina stina (Bride’s cliff)
Legend has it that there was once a great love between a young girl and a young man who were fatally turned to stone at Nevista. The Nevistina stina is a passage which was once was the only connection between the Littoral and the Biokovo hinterland and it is also a beautiful viewpoint.
According to the legend, a young girl from the “upper” parts, probably from Dalmatia hinterland, was intended to marry in the Littoral area. Her mother was against this love but above all, was against her daughter’s decision to marry someone not chosen by her family. Perhaps the problem lay in the fact that the young man was from the Littoral region and as such from a poor area!? In any case , the mother sent her daughter away with the following words: When you look at the sea, hope that God turns you into stone! Despite those terrible words, the bridal procession moved, led by the bridegroom and the bride on horseback, and she had not even hinted at the strength of her mother’s curse. But, when the happy group arrived at the peak of the mountain above Brela, the curse came true. Proof can be seen in the stones in the form of a horse with a bride and bridegroom on it, a loaf of bread and goatskin bottles. If you look more carefully, you can see the bride’s veil which at that moment the wind drew away from her head. You can also see the wedding guests who followed them, perhaps it is a little more difficult now if you aren’t sure what you are looking for, as over the years a thick pine wood has grown around them..
Dugi rat beach
One of the most beautiful pebble beaches in the world is situated on the pine covered promontory. In 2004, American magazine “Forbes” proclaimed it the most beautiful beach in Europe and the 6th in the world. It has alswo received a number of rewards in Croatia.
Kamen Brela (a Brela stone)
This is the name of a famous rock that long ago stumbled from Biokovo to the sea. It can be found near to Dugi rat beach (formerly known as Punta rata). Overgrown by pine trees that seem to emerge from the sea itself it has a symbol of Brela as well as a protected monument of nature.
The cave Pozjata
The big cavern which in the past saved many lives of cattle breeders, farmers, hunters, and others who sheltered from bad weather, very changeable at this area. During summer period it was used by horses, cows, sheep, and goats to shelter. The cave can be reached from different ways: from Šuta (Rastovac) across Kala, from Topići across Topola, from Gornja Brela across Bukovac and Bartulovići, as the shortest mountain path, marked with signs.
The pit Zmajevača
The cave accessible to every nature fan. The entrance is only 70 cm, and for the descent it is recommended to use the rope and the lighting. The inner part of the pit impresses with the beauty of stalactites, pillars and walls with the crystalline calcium carbonate deposited. Zmajevača belongs to the group of unusual and interesting pits because of its huge hole (around 1400 m2), and for its depth of 162 m. At the bottom of the pit there is a large area (dimensions: 70x35 m). It is of a particular interest since at sunlight it can be descended into even to extreme depth
Šuplja stina (hollow cliff) or "Biokovsko oko" (the Biokovo eye)
Situated on the peak of Biokovo, above Brela. It is a natural phenomenon through which a marvellous view on Brela extends. This cliff seems like a huge eye with which Biokovo watches over the Littoral part and protects its people. Just by taking a look at a photograph of it shows that it is well-worth visiting.
Bukovac (1290 m)
One of the peaks of Biokovo, situated above Brela. From the village of Gornja Brela to Bukovac there are approx. 3 h of up-hill walking. A beautiful view over Makarska and Omiš Riviera extends from Bukovac as well as the central massif of Biokovo. An alpine refuge was built here at approx. 1030 m above sea level where you can stay overnight with prior appointment with the “Pozjata”, Brela alpine association.
A paleontological area, with a panoramic viewpoint, incision and saddle, a place where winds are created and become wild. This is an archaeological site where bony Breccia from the period of 500 000 years BC can be found. “Sea, sea…” – it is said that it was precisely here that Croatians exclaimed those words when arriving at the Adriatic. Here, cliffs fall into the sea to a depth of more than 100 m. Numerous fresh water springs can be found as well as part of the river Cetina that sinks somewhere in Zagora and tumbles out in Vruja. A marvellous sight can be seen with the large groups of fish that gather here for feeding and reproduction.
Together with Berulia beach, the Medvidina Cave was once the habitat of the Mediterranean Monk Seal after which it received its name. The Mediterranean monk seal is species of seal and one of the most endangered mammals. In this region they are also known as morski medvid (sea bear) or morski čovik (sea man). Fishermen considered them to be enemies as they often destroyed their nets. In 1960s it disappeared from the Adriatic coast but ther has recently been information saying that it has been seen again.
The Bijanković pine
This was one of the most beautiful and most famous pines in Brela. It grew from a stone, and was more than 300 years old when it was destroyed due to carelessness during the construction of the Soline hotel. A man in love with Brela would often sit under its rich foliage and meditate, this was Makarska Bishop, Nikola Bijanković (1645-1730) to whom Brela and its inhabitants are indebted for a number of reasons. A new pine has since been planted in his honour in the same place and one of the streets in Brela also received his name. In 1715, after the victory against the Ottomans near Sinj, he built a church in Brela, dedicating it to Our Lady of Victory (the current Church of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel).