The charm of Vinjerac

Vinjerac is often overlooked. Just like most smaller places of North Dalmatia and most of small villages that are not close to main centers. In a way it is the blessing and a curse at the same time: more and more people are leaving as there are no jobs but the places remain relatively intact. In 1991, Vinjerac had only 273 inhabitants.

Vinjerac and Velebit mountain in the background
Vinjerac and Velebit mountain in the background

So after a great meal at Pece’s we decided to take a walk through the village and see what it looks like. It looks almost intact compared to other, now devastated places along the coast. With mighty Velebit in the background and amazing Paklenica gorges, Vinjerac is very pretty. It was also of strategic importance in the past so the area was settled in pre-history with nearby Lergina Gradina as one of the most dominant Liburnian settlements before the arrival of Romans.  Today’s Vinjerac has probably been formed in early Middle Ages but it was a place of fierce battles between Venice and the Turkish empire as it was one of the control points between Turkish held Lika and Venetian Zadar. The battles were so fierce that Venice destroyed Vinjerac in 1570 so it does not fall in Turkish hands…

Paklenica gorges seen from Vinjerac
Paklenica gorges seen from Vinjerac

The village, as today, was formed in mid 19th century when the locals had a fairly big  fleet of over 30 different, large boats for trading along the coast. The prosperity did not last long after the steam boats first came and many houses in Vinjerac are just reminding us of it’s interesting past.

Now abandoned villa
Old villa by the sea

It is always good to see what treasures local churches hold.

St Anthony
St Anthony

The construction of the church has been started in the beginning of 20th century and the bell tower  finished only in 1983. It has a curious motif of deer above the entrance.

Interesting luneta
Interesting deer under the palm trees
Getting ready for the mass
Getting ready for the mass

The rest of the village is in fairly poor condition… Many historic ruins are in the very center. The strong bura wind that blows in this area brings salty air that definitely does not help preserving the buildings.

No one at home
No one at home
Interesting touch
Interesting touch

The harbor looks lovely and there were works on the boats while we were there.

The harbor
The harbor
Getting ready
Getting ready
Spring sunset
Spring sunset

Vinjerac is fairly interesting when it comes to it’s center but the outskirts have been experiencing a small construction boom with houses and apartment buildings. Fortunately, nothing compared to other places so it is still a lovely place to visit. Combined with fine food of Pece tavern, it makes a great trip!

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