The third largest of Croatia's Adriatic islands, BRAČ is the nearest of the major islands to Split, and is correspondingly busy in season. The south coast fishing village of Bol, with its spectacular beach, is the main attraction, although the beaches at Supetar (where ferries from Split arrive) on the north coast are no mean substitute. Away from the coast, the island's starkly beautiful interior has undoubted allure, its scrub-covered karst uplands dotted with fertile depressions containing vines, olives and orange trees, or by the great man-made piles of limestone that characterize the Dalmatian islands, built up over centuries by smallholders clearing a place in which to grow crops.
Bra6 is famous for its stone, and was until the development of the tourist trade dependent on the export of its milk-white marble, which was used in Berlin's Reichstag, the high altar of Liverpool's Catholic cathedral, the White House in Washington and, of course, Diocletian's Palace in Split. The island's other major source of wealth was the grape harvest, though the phylloxera (vine lice) epidemics of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries forced many winemakers to emigrate. Even today, the signs of this depopulation are all around in the tumbledown houses and overgrown fields of the interior.
Bol is served by flights from Zagreb between April September inclusive. There are several ferries a day from Split to Supetar, plus catamarans from Split to Bol and to Milna, on the western side of the island, daily between mid-June and mid-September; there's also a ferry from Makarska on the mainland to Sumartin on the eastern tip of the Brač, although there are only two or three connecting buses from here to Supetar daily. Supetar is the main hub of the island bus network, with frequent departures southwest to Milna, east to Pučišća, and south to Bol. If you're travelling on to Hvar, note that some excursion operators in Bol offer trips there (they'll be chalked up on sign-boards in the harbour), which may be more convenient than going all way back to Split to pick up a regular ferry.
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