‘If you’re still thinking about where to go this summer, paradise is definitely waiting for you at Stiniva beach, Croatia.’ – writes the British Daily Mail on the occasion of proclaiming Stiniva on the island of Vis, the most beautiful beach in Europe, in 2016. Among close to 300 European beaches, with the highest number of votes – Stiniva was chosen!
Since 1967, Stiniva Bay is a protected nature monument in Croatia, under the status of a significant landscape. This cove was created during the ice age, when the sea level was 120 meters lower than it is today. Due to the watercourses that cut through the canyon, a karst cave was created underground, which collapsed thousands of years ago. Proof of that are the speleothems found on the eastern cliffs of today’s bay.
After the ice age, as the sea level rose, the mechanical pounding of the waves broke the part of the cave towards the sea. Over the last few thousand years, the sea has flooded the lower part of the canyon and rounded limestone pieces collapsed from the ceiling of the cave, creating the pebbles of today’s beach. The rocks in which the canyon is carved are limestones from the dinosaur era. In these layers we find brown shellfish shells (rudists) that once lived in a silt at the bottom of the sea.
”With the crystal clear sea, white sand and impressive cliffs in the background, it is obvious why this beach has won”, write the foreign media, praising the beauty of the island of Vis, but also the Croatian coast in general.
The beach can be reached from the mainland and from the sea. From the mainland to the beach descends a steep field path that is not suitable for descending to children under 7 years. Going down the trail can take more than twenty minutes, so we recommend that you bring some water, and we also advice that you take this trail in good sandals or, even better, in sneakers.
If you are coming by the sea, you will have to anchor outside the bay and swim to the beach, because in the season you will be greeted with a lot of crowds, so if you a searching for quiet and peaceful beaches, we recommend visiting this beach before the arrival of excursion boats, and that’s before 10.00 a.m.
The beach is made of larger pebbles, has a warm and clean sea, which is extremely calm. Due to the high cliffs that surround it, one part of the beach always has a natural shade throughout the day. In the bay, there is a small beach bar where you can refresh yourself in the shade, and enjoy the natural beauties of this still hidden pearl of the Adriatic Sea.
Location: If you are going to Stiniva from the town of Vis, you have to drive/go through the settlements: Podselje, Plisko Polje and Marinje Zemlje, and reach the hamlet of Žužeca, where it is possible to leave the car, and then continue on foot along the field path for about 20 minutes. The distance between Vis – Žužeca is about 9 km.
If you are going to Stiniva from Komiža, you have to pass through the settlements: Podhumlje, Podšpilje and follow the sign to turn right towards Stiniva and the hamlet of Žužeca, where you can leave your car, and then continue on foot along the field path, some 20-minutes. The distance between Komiža-Žužeca is about 13 km.
Beach type: pebble – sand, suitable for young children only if you reach the beach by boat.