Monday, 28 November 2022

Did You Know About the 300 Kilometre-Long Slavonia Hiking Trail?

November 28, 2022 - The Slavonia hiking trail is an interesting story that started on July 27, 1957. The trail is the oldest and longest hiking trail in Croatia.

As written by the Turističke Priče portal, the trail is 300 kilometers long, and you can hike it in one piece or separately through a total of 5 sections. For the whole trip in one piece, even a well-prepared hiker must account for nine days or 85 hours of walking, and not many can boast of having crossed it.

This interesting route has a circular shape with 31 mandatory and four optional checkpoints, and includes Papuk, Psunj, Krndija, Požeška, and Dilj gora.

The 300-kilometer trail through the Slavonian mountains is divided into five sections

"Psunj": mountain lodge Petrov vrh - mountain lodge Strmac
"Požeška gora": mountain lodge Strmac – Komorica
"Dilj gora": Komorica - mountain lodge Borovik
"Krndija": mountain lodge Borovik - mountain lodge Jankovac
"Papuk": mountain lodge Jankovac - mountain lodge Petrov vrh

Stamps as proof of visit to the Slavonia trail

To acquire the Badge of the Slavonia Trail, hikers have to go through all the mandatory control points, where they will find stamps that they can use as proof of having passed through each of them. In case a stamp cannot be found, a photo of the hiker at the checkpoint will be needed. It is recommended to visit the checkpoints in 5 two-day trips. The stamps are located in the corresponding boxes at the checkpoints or in the hiking facilities that the trail passes by.


Photo: Dorian Dražić-Karalić

The Slavonia hiking trail can be visited in unlimited time and in any chosen direction. The hike is done at own risk with compliance with the rules of safe hiking and staying in the mountains, recommended by the Croatian Mountaineering Society.

To date, more than 150 hiking trails have been opened in Croatia, which vary in difficulty and duration. Usually, they allow hikers to get to know the most valuable hiking checkpoints on a mountain or in the region by taking the most accessible or attractive routes. Numerous hiking trails allow a choice of interesting hiking checkpoints according to a condition or criterion determined by the trail organiser.

On the official website of the Croatian Mountaineering Association, you can find information on all hiking trails opened in Croatia so far, regardless of their status. Detailed information on registered hiking trails is available in the Mountaineering Trails Register, which is managed by the HPS Mountaineering Trails Commission, according to the Croatian Mountaineering Association.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated Travel section.

Friday, 18 February 2022

‘Movement Is Healing’: Meet the Man Who Walked 1100 Km, Proving Nothing Is Impossible

February 18th, 2022 - Adventurer Mihael Strle embarked on a long-distance hike to raise awareness of rheumatoid arthritis and completed the 1100 km trail in three months

Ten years ago, Croatian adventurer Mihael Strle found out he was suffering from rheumatoid arthritis, a condition that eventually had him walking with crutches. A few days ago, Mihael completed a 1100 km long hiking adventure.

The adventure in question is Via Adriatica, a stunning long-distance hiking trail spanning from Cape Kamenjak in Istria to Prevlaka peninsula south of Dubrovnik. It took Mihael three months to reach the end of the trail, and on the way he faced merciless winds, snow, ice, and -20°C temperatures. Joined by his pup Oscar, he conquered the highest mountain peaks in Croatia, reports RTL.

How does someone with arthritis walk for three consecutive months? ‘Slowly’, said Mihael with a laugh.

‘I can walk like any other person, I just have certain other difficulties that are slowing me down. I have to listen to my body more closely, and pay closer attention to the trail’, he said.


He often suffered pains as he was hiking, and had symptoms of overexertion that are otherwise kept in check with physical therapy, but he says he could bear it.

‘As I was getting further into the trail, the conditions kept changing. The route is designed in a very interesting way, it gradually gets more challenging. After I departed from Cape Kamenjak, my first issue was realising that I carried 20-30kg on my back, which was a bigger problem than walking. Then you get to the first mountain, Učka, where I saw that I’d be ascending, that it’s going to be hard; then you get to a more ‘serious’ mountain Velebit, followed by Dinara, so overall, as inexperienced as I was, I kept learning gradually, day after day, and it was challenging’, said Mihael for RTL Direkt.

17834889_650925908425529_2706893834346636171_o.jpgImage by Via Adriatica Trail Facebook

There were moments when Mihael thought it would be easier to give up, but he had a drive and motivation to keep walking. The latter was the project named ‘A step above’ (Croatian: Korak iznad), aiming to raise awareness of arthritis.

‘People would often ask me about the project over the last ten years, and they were always surprised to hear it’s a broad-spectrum disease that affects young people as well. This is what I’d like to raise awareness of, that it’s not just the elderly who are affected. I’m now in a phase of remission and rest; movement has healing properties, that's part of what made me decide to walk’, said Mihael.

He certainly proved he can do a lot despite having arthritis, and has lived a real winter adventure. In the three months he spent on the trail, Mihael spent the night outdoors in a tent 25% of the time, and otherwise slept in mountain lodges and various shelters.

‘The logistics were the most challenging part. There isn’t a single store [on the trail] all the way from Rijeka to Knin, nor another option to get food, so it was a big help to me to have friends and other people on the trail who supported me. There are so-called trail angels who we can rely on if needed, there’s a group we can reach out to for help, there’s also the Mountain Rescue Service, but my friends were my biggest suport’, said Mihael. 

Trail angels are people living near the long-distance trail who jump in to help the Via Adriatica hikers whenever needed, having them over for a meal, assisting with supplies and medicine, or even providing accommodation for a night or two. This is all done on a voluntary basis. 

Naturally, Mihael was very emotional when he reached the end of the trail in Privlaka.

‘On the one hand, I was very sad it was over, but at the same time I was also very proud of myself and pleased with everything I’ve done’, he said.

This is not the first time he embarked on an adventure of this sort. Mihael previously cycled from Zagreb to Turkey, and kayaked from Korčula island in southern Dalmatia all the way to Istria. The latter project took two weeks of rowing and another week to recuperate.

He said he truly believes that movement gives life, that it’s healing. ‘I have a need to get better every day, to focus on my health, my training, and to do what I love in order to get healthy’, Michael said.

He used to work as a medical technician, but his life changed and he discovered new life values and new ways of thinking.

‘I’m not that focused on my career anymore, on my profession and work, as much as on the quality of life and interpersonal relationships. A situation like that simply opens your eyes’, he said.

To anyone faced with a similar diagnosis, Mihael would say to take some time to accept it, to process it, and then move forward. ‘You have to keep your spirits up. Even a single small step further every day is a big step for me’, he said.


Follow other hikers on their adventures over on the Via Adriatica Trail Facebook page.

Wednesday, 22 December 2021

52 Thematic Hiking Trails in Split-Dalmatia County Were Presented

December 22, 2021 - Today, the Tourist Board of the Split-Dalmatia County (TZSD) presented 52 thematic hiking trails of the Split-Dalmatia County in the length of 327 kilometers on the coast, islands, and Zagora.

The 52 thematic hiking trails, which are a new tourist product, represent a step towards active tourism and new tourist content in the wake of the world's search for tourists for a longer stay in the open air with a thoughtful story and original offer, reports In order for guests to see exactly before they arrive in Central Dalmatia how they can actively relax and walk through attractive landscapes, all 52 thematic hiking trails are processed and presented in digital form and Google Street View with a picture of each of them, and through two brochures - thematic trails islands and other thematic trails of coastal Central Dalmatia.

"Local tourist boards have proposed trails that carry a   story or interesting, so the trails are named. Our goal is to disperse tourist traffic throughout the year and in all parts of our county because Central Dalmatia has all the prerequisites for this. These thematic trails are additional content, especially for Google Street View, which is the first time in this way implemented in this tourist product. travel agencies the opportunity to stories of thematic paths formed in their creative tourism products, and TZ county will all follow active marketing in the international market in the coming months," said is  Joško Stella, director of TZSD County.

By the way, all 52 thematic hiking trails are set on GoogleMaps as StartPoint, each is recorded as GoogleStreetView with  Google's location. This information was put on the Strava application, which is the world's most used application for walkers, and on Alltrails, which is used by everyone who is engaged in active holidays.

Everything is also on TripAdvisor, and on the new website of the County Tourist Board, there will be descriptions, pictures, and links so that everyone can follow their every step on their mobile phone along the thematic path.

By the way, Split-Dalmatia County is the first region in Europe to introduce Google Sea view through a Google map, which will enable its users to view the complete sea route along the coast of this county. 

For more, check out our lifestyle section.