Secret Dalmatia Blog - Travel Experiences in Croatia

Kaić na kraju – painting the boat

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It is that time of year again… Time to pull out the boat and fix what is needed. Clean it and paint it.
This is our late grandfather’s boat. The boat in Dalmatia is called “kaić” – read kaich. It is about 40 years old now but still in excellent shape. My family comes from a small island of Babac just in the middle of Pašman channel near Biograd. In the past, the entire island had only one boat and now everyone owns at least one. Not necessarily a good thing…

My brother and father usually work on the boat as I am very occupied with the agency. Here they are cleaning and restoring it. It actually looks quite nice after a year in water!

Luciano cleaning the boat
Luciano cleaning the boat

The wooden boats are slowly loosing ground to the plastic ones. Such a shame! The difference is tremendous – the boat is like a living creature and rubbing it with sand paper seems like you a touching an animal. You can actually feel it’s soul.

Boat on dry dock in Turanj.
Boat on "dry dock" in Turanj.
Checking for damages...
Checking for damages...

Two days is usually enough for finishing the works unless there are more serious damages. In that case we tow the boat to Betina village on Murter island where some of the last shipbuilders are still to be found.
The slowly dying knowledge is disappearing with the wooden boats. Everything is turning to plastic and metal these days. In the beginning of starting Secret Dalmatia, part of the plan was to do day trips to the shipyards for aficionados of wooden shipbuilding. It can still be offered but not too many travelers in Croatia come with that interest.

Finished... In new colors.
Finished... In new colors.
Ready to cut waves!
Ready to cut waves!
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