Via Apsyrtides

STAGE 10
MALI LOŠINJ - VELI LOŠINJ

STAGE 10

MALI LOŠINJ - VELI LOŠINJ

The tall pine forests that today cover most of the central and southern part of the island of Lošinj look as if they have been standing through the ages, but that is not the case. They are the result of painstaking afforestation of bare karst carried out in the late 19th and early 20th century, as well as the subsequent spontaneous spread of pine trees all the way to the coastal rocks, giving the sea its characteristic, emerald green colour. The forest park Čikat, located near Mali Lošinj, is one of the largest (221 ha) and oldest pine tree forests on the islands of the Adriatic. Walking along its many paths strewn with pine needles and shielded from the harsh sunlight and wind by the ancient canopies, breathing in the smell of resin, moss and the sea, is an experience offering true physical and spiritual healing.

  • 18 km
  • 380 m
  • HIGHEST POINT: 221 m
  • LOWEST POINT : 0 m
  • DIFFICULTY: 6/10
  • DURATION: 4 h

DIFFICULTY

6/10

LANDSCAPE

9/10

ENDURANCE

8/10

EXPERIENCE

10/10

VELA STRAŽA

Despite being situated at a height of only 62 m, Vela Straža has until recently served as one of the key lookout points for controlling and guarding the entrance to the port of Mali Lošinj. The original ancient hillfort, used for shelter by the first inhabitants
of the fertile valley at its foot, has been dismantled by various armies (Austro-Hungarian, Italian and Yugoslav) building their own temporary or permanent guard posts.

MONUMENT OF PROF. AMBROZ HARAČIĆ

The bronze sculpture of the most famous professor of the Nautical School of Lošinj is but a modest tribute to the man who quite literally changed the appearance, microclimate and fate of his island. A passionate botanist and meteorologist, Prof. Haračić presented the beneficial properties of the local climate to scientists from Vienna based on his research, put in action mass afforestation of the island and laid the foundations for the development of health tourism on Lošinj.

CHURCH OF THE ANNUNCIATION OF THE BLESSED VIRGIN MARY AT ČIKAT

The large and well-protected Čikat Bay has always provided safe anchorage to seafarers. In the 16th century, a chapel was erected at its entrance, dedicated to the Annunciation (25 March), a celebration that marked the start of the sailing season for the locals. Next to it, the Lošinj seafarers built today’s church in 1858 as a sign of their gratitude, and filled it with votive paintings of their, miraculously surviving boats.

ST. JOHN

Before the construction of the Church of St. John the Baptist in the middle of the 18th century, the peak (231 m) was known as Vela Straža. For centuries it was used to keep watch over the boats approaching Veli Lošinj from the sea – possible pirates or local seafarers returning home. With the development of tourism in the late 19th century, it became a favourite viewpoint for visitors, and on its slope a large park was built by Archduke Charles Stephen (today known as the forest park Pod Javori).

Ivan
Ivan@ivan
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Great walk. Beautiful island and well marked trails. Highly recommended.
Anna
Anna@anna
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Me and my family walked the whole route twice on our vacation. That says a lot!
John
John @johnny
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Lovely scenery. Cave Čampari was the highlight of the walk. Headlamps are a must!
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SHARE THIS TRAIL

• Via Apsyrtides trail system is intended for experienced mountain climbers and recreationists. The trails provide a basic level of walkability, without additional measures of safety and protection. Use these trails at your own risk!
• Rugged landscape and climatic conditions of the island can be challenging. Assess your fitness level well and wear appropriate footwear and clothing!
• Water availability in some villages is limited. Carry enough water with you!
• Your responsibility is to follow the laws and regulations of the Republic of Croatia related to nature protection, accommodation and respect for other people's property.
• Leave only footprints, take only memories! Dispose of garbage in the villages, in designated areas. Do not collect wild plants and do not disturb animals you come across! Keep the gates closed behind you!
• You are in an area of high wildfire risk. Lighting open fires is strictly forbidden!

• Water: next to Hotel Punta in Veli Lošinj, next to the kindergarten in Veli Lošinj
• Convenience store: Jadranka convenience stores, Lidl (Omladinska Street 1/A), Konzum (Dražica 18B)
• Café: in Mali Lošinj and Veli Lošinj
• Restaurant: in Mali Lošinj and Veli Lošinj
• Pharmacy: in Mali Lošinj Muškardin and Kaštel Fram
• Physician: in Mali Lošinj
• ATM: in Mali Lošinj (in the centre, next to the Zagazine convenience store, Maxi convenience store, Cappelli Tourist Agency... In Veli Lošinj next to the Val tourist agency)
 

SAFETY INFORMATION
Mind the strong Bura wind, especially in winter and pay attention to:

  • ticks
  • scorpions
  • wild animals (wild boar)
  • heat

RECOMMENDED EQUIPMENT

  • GPS
  • water
  • waterfilter
  • mobile phone
  • headlamp

The section starts on Trg Republike Hrvatske (Republic of Croatia Square) in Mali Lošinj. Take the Priko street towards Velopin and Bocca falsa and follow the markings. Many public parking lots are available.