Hiking to Starigrad Fortress in Omis, Croatia by JetSettingFools.com

Hiking to Starigrad Fortress in Omis, Croatia

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Omis, Croatia – a seaside town 25km south of Split – is nestled at the base of the Dinara Mountain where the Cetina River flows into the sea. With an inviting coastline, picturesque walled city and striking mountains, we understand why it has been nicknamed the Omis Riviera. However, we weren’t interested in sunbathing, café sipping or any other sea-level Omis, Croatia things to do. We had one activity planned: hiking to Starigrad Fortress in Omis.

Hiking to Starigrad Fortress in Omis

A steep climb to the Starigrad Fortress.


Omis Old Town


On the day we chose to go trekking in Croatia, strong winds were causing havoc along the coast. We could see the wind dancing on the sea and even caught sight of a few water spouts swirling above the sea. Between our off-season visit and the temperamental weather, the town was battened down, leaving very few things to do in Omis, Croatia. Regardless, before we began our hike to the Omis Stari Grad fort, we walked through the main artery of the old town, leaves whipping in the air around us. We popped into St. Michael’s Church, one of the many churches, before locating the Omis castle trailhead (follow the signs through the Old Town).

We walked through the town before hiking to Starigrad Fortress in Omis

St. Michael’s bell tower and the lower Mirabella Fortress in the Omis old town.

We walked the narrow streets of the old town before hiking to Starigrad Fortress in Omis

Narrow lanes and rocky mountains.

One of the many churches we saw before hiking to Starigrad Fortress in Omis

Another church built into the narrow streets of Omis’ old town.


Climbing to Starigrad Fortica (Fortress)

The Starigrad Fortress is one of the many Croatia landmarks along the Adriatic Sea – and the fortress mountain hike is one of the top things to do in Omis. The steep climb against the side of the sheer rock mountain is vigorous, but  well-rewarded with sweeping views over the town and sea. The trail was also amazingly protected from the wind, which made for much better hiking conditions than we had anticipated. For 30 minutes, we followed the trail up steps and over rocks, always at an incline, until we came to a sign post that pointed us in the direction of the Omis fortress. Flat, but windy, we hiked the last stretch to Fortress Starigrad. 

We found the trailhead to begin hiking to Starigrad Fortress in Omis

The trailhead.

We had only been hiking to Starigrad Fortress in Omis for a few minutes before we already had stellar views over the town

We only hiked a few minutes before we had stellar views of Omis.

Hiking to Starigrad Fortress in Omis we encountered a rocky trail

The rocky trail.

A sign post leading the way while hiking to Starigrad Fortress in Omis

Only 15 minutes to the fortress!


Arriving at Starigrad Fortress in Omis

The 15th century Starigrad Fortress Omis was strategically built on a peak overlooking the town, river and sea, but is overshadowed by taller mountains, as well. When we arrived at the fort, the wind was fierce, knocking me over as I climbed the stairs inside. We battled the wind in the interior of the Starigrad Omis fort, no doubt looking like the idiot weathermen who report live from the middle of a hurricane. Unable to steady myself with my camera, I could only snap a few shots from the top. Still, we felt victorious.

Hiking to Starigrad Fortress in Omis

Starigrad Fortress.

The views are the reward for hiking to Starigrad Fortress in Omis

Views of Omis from Starigrad Fortress.

The inside of Starigrad Fortress in Omis, Croatia

The interior of the Starigrad Fortress

We triumphantly continued our Omis hiking trek back down to sea level, again protected from the wind, but with the view of the sea in front of us this time. Knowing that the town was fairly quiet and there were only a few cafes open, we headed straight for the bus stop, where the Split-Omis bus was just pulling up.

We were triumphant in hiking to Starigrad Fortress in Omis



Our Top Tips for Visiting Omis, Croatia

More Omis Activities

In addition to hiking in Omis, other popular outdoor Omis activities ziplining, rock climbing and rafting Omis. Omis River Rafting trips can be booked in advance on Viator

How to get to Omis from Split

There is a Split-Omis bus that makes it easy to travel between the two coastal cities. Check the Bus 60 Split-Omis timetable on the Promet Split Bus Website.


Where To Stay in Split, Croatia

During our visits to Split, we stay in Airbnb Apartments. (Not already a member of Airbnb? Use this link to create an account and save money on your first stay!) However, for those who prefer staying in traditional accommodations, there are many hotels to choose from in – or close to – the city center. Check out these top-rated hotels (based on guest reviews!) for your upcoming trip:

Or These Hostels: 


Top Tip: If you are looking for a tourist agency to help organize your accommodations, tours and transfers, we recommend Adiona Travel. The locally-owned Split Tourist Agency can help plan your complete trip to Split! 


Before You Go to Split

  • Don’t forget to pack a pair of lightweight and comfortable walking shoes. I (Sarah) have traveled with these shoes by Columbia, Skechers and Reef. Kris prefers wearing these shoes by Merrell and Sanuk.
  • We’re certain you’ll be snapping tons of photos during your trip. Rather than relying on your mobile phone to capture the sights, upgrade to an actual camera for higher quality photos. We travel with a Canon Rebel (which takes amazing photos, but can be a bit clunky) and a Canon PowerShot ELPH (which takes beautiful pictures, is slim and lightweight – and the new models are wifi enabled so you can share your trip pics to social media in real time!).
  • It’s easy to get turned around or lost in any new city! Be sure to have a good city map and/or guidebook prior to arriving.  
  • We think travel insurance is essential! If you haven’t already obtained travel insurance for your trip, travel protected with World Nomads.


Start planning your trip to Split! Search for the lowest airfares, the best accommodations and fun things to do…then start packing!  Want more travel planning tips? Head over to our Travel Planning page for more information and tips on traveling – and for country-specific information, take a look at our Travel Guides page!


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10 thoughts on “Hiking to Starigrad Fortress in Omis, Croatia

  1. Hello! I have a few questions!

    1. You can hike to the fortress without a tour right? Just start at the marker by the church?
    2. How long is the hike? Thanks!

    Great blog

    • Hi! Oh, yes, it is an open trail to the fortress; no fees or tours required. Once you find the marker in town, just follow the steps up…and keep going up. It took about two hours total, but we stopped for lunch and to look at the views (really to catch our breath) quite often. The trail is more strenuous than we thought it would be, but not really that difficult. Expect wind at the top! 🙂 Enjoy!

  2. Glad to see your post on this, amazing views right? We had the same crazy winds, must be coming down the gorge.
    Happy you guys did it!
    Frank (bbqboy)

  3. Anonymous

    No matter where you go in Croatia there’s a stunning view!!!!! Your pics have me yearning for a Croatian adventure

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