Vrgorsko gorje is a part of Dinaric Alps system, which stretches from Slovenia, through Croatia, Bosnia&Herzegovina, Montenegro and Albania.
It is consist of three mountain ridges Matokit (1062 m), Mihovil (1247 m) and Sibenik (1314 m). The mountain ridges, the valley, as well as the smaller karst valleys in the mountainous zone spread in the Dinaric direction (NW – SI). From the furthest nortwestern point near Rascane to Vrgorac on the southeast, the massif of Vrgorsko gorje has 19 kilometres in length.
Three ridges of Vrgorsko gorje (Matokit, Mihovil and Sibenik)
On the west, Vrgorsko gorje borders Zabiokovska valley which separates the area from the massif Of Biokovo. On the northwest, this area is physically a part of Imotski s Biokovo hinterland, with the Slivno-Krstatice valley and the wide Imotsko polje representing the natural border on the north and northeast. Phisically, this zone also continues on the east, across the border with Bosnia and Herzegovina, ending in the river basin of Tihaljina- Trebižat. Its natural border on the south is the Bunina and Vrgorsko polje on the southern slopes of Matokit.
In the western part this massif descends very steeply towards Kozica in Zabiokovska valley, and reaches the highest inclination in the elevations above 700 meters, from Satulija (1170 m) to the southern slopes of Mihovil. Nortwards, it descends gently towards the highlands area of Poljica and in the east, towards the Bosnian border, it is elongated and has the form of several lower ridges. Milina zasida saddle divides Ober (1098 m) and Medviđa ploča (1076 m). This saddle is important since it is the only direct connection of the isolated areas of Mijaca and Poljica Kozička with Vrgorac. Towards the south it descendes towards Stilja and Zavojane, while a narrow belt of high zone meets Matokit ridge with its highest peak Sv. Rok (1062 m) and then descends down the steep and monotonus slopes to Vrgorac.
Without any doubt, this is the least known mountainous area in Croatia. There are only two waymarked paths in whole massif. First towards summit of Sv. Rok (1602 m) and the second one toward Sv. Mihovil peak (1247 m). Sv. Rok on Matokit ridge can be reached from east and city of Vrgorac and from the south and village of Ravca. For both of these paths you would need almost 3 hours walk to reach the summit. Starting point of path to Sv. Mihovil summit is village of Podastine near Zavojane and it takes also almost 3 hours walk to the peak. Other summits in this massif, including the highest one, Veliki Sibenik still does not have marked paths and for now are approachable only to the mountaineers with adventures spirit.
The usual waymark in Croatia mountains is a white circle with a red surround or a red arrow, often bent in the direction to be taken. Forks are indicated by signposts or easily visible writing on rocks. Unfortunatelly, these paths in Vrgorsko gorje are not so well maintained and we have many faded waymarks on the paths, which naturally demands extra caution. Because of that is advisable to use services of mountain guides. Mountain guides in Croatia are trained according UIAA standards and they are registered at the HPS (Mountaineering Association of Croatia).
Highest point of the massif is Veliki Šibenik (1314 m). This peak is to the east of the line Satulija – M. Šibenik – Mihovil, and in contrast to Mihovil it is less visually distinguished when looked at from western and southern areas. Veliki Sibenik offers superb views on Croatian islands Hvar, Korcula, on peninsula of Peljesac, coastal mountains such as Mosor, Biokovo, Rilic, Snijeznica and Orjen or interior mountains such as Svilaja, Dinara, Troglav, Kamesnica, Cincar, Vitorog, Zavelim, Vran, Cvrsnica, Prenj and Velez.
Vrgorsko gorje is karst mountain made of limestone, very hard and harsh, unhospitable and without surface water. Since there are no surface water flows here, the residents still use water tanks.
Speleological forms can by found throughout the whole massif.
In higher zones the snow cover can last up to three months. Due to the orographic influence annual precipitation is around 2000 mm.
View from the summit of Veliki Sibenik
Vrgorac (2500 inhabitants) is situated in a saddle between Matokit and the southern ridges Gradina (480 m) and Zveč (480 m), which separate the karst poljes Vrgorsko and Rastok.
A medieval town in the karst hinterland Dalmatinska Zagora, Vrgorac, is located on the south-eastern slopes of the Vrgorsko gorje. It is only 30 kilometres from the town of Makarska and the Makarska Riviera, Međugorje, Metković, Vid and natural attractions such as the Biokovo Nature Park, Kravice and Koćuša waterfalls, Neretva River delta and Baćina lakes.
In addition to local specialties and wines in a rural atmosphere of villages and hamlets, the Vrgorac region offers accommodation and offers many opportunities for an active holiday.
SV. ROK (SAINT ROK)
ALTITUDE: 1062 m
STARTING ALTITUDE: 240 m
HEIGHT DIFFERENCE: 822 m
A waymarked route leads from Vrgorac
Unless you wish to return the same way, we suggest an alternative, descending towards the south in Ravca on the road Vrgorac - Zagvozd (5 km from Vrgorac)
A technically easy yet pathless tour across summit ridge requires some caution.
Vrgorac - Sv. Rok 3h
Sv. Rok - Ravca (descent) 2h
SV. MIHOVIL (SAINT MICHAEL)
ALTITUDE: 1247 m
STARTING ALTITUDE: 405 m
HEIGHT DIFFERENCE: 842 m
A waymarked route leads from Zavojane (12 km from Vrgorac)
By the same route
The tour is easy, but in summer can be terribly hot because of the sunny, open position.
Zavojane - Sv. Mihovil 3h
VELIKI SIBENIK (GREAT SIBENIK)
ALTITUDE: 1314 m
STARTING ALTITUDE: 765 m
HEIGHT DIFFERENCE: 549 m
A starting point is in the village of Poljica Kozicka - Vranjesi (30 km from Vrgorac)
If you don´t want to descent by the same way, you can make a fine tour descending towards the south in Zavojane (Podastine)
This tour requires independence from waymarks and a basic understanding of orientation in the mountains. In some places the path is rather difficult to make out.
Poljica Kozicka - Veliki Sibenik 2h
Veliki Sibenik - Zavojane (descent) 2:30h
Closest airport is in Split, 109 km away or in Dubrovnik, 127 km away. There are around 3 flights every day from Zagreb to Split or Dubrovnik. Look for timetable on official site of Split airport
Another possibility may include Mostar in Bosnia&Herzegovina, 55 km away, but with much less possibilities for transfer to Vrgorac.
There are 5 bus lines from Split to Vrgorac daily. Detailed bus timetables from Split to Vrgorac you can find at Split bus station site
From Zagreb 479 km or from Split 109 km.
This route is suitable if you are coming from western Europe, via Trieste (Italy):
Trieste - Rijeka 70 km
Rijeka – Vrgorac 486 km
Look for current road conditions in Croatia on the page of Croatian Automobile Club (HAK)
There are no permits or access fees required.
Camping & Huts
There are no mountain huts on Vrgorsko gorje. Camping is not prohibited.
Video clip about Vrgorsko gorje 00:05:10
You can obtain general weather info at:
3-day weather forecast for Vrgorac
Weather forecast for Veliki Sibenik