Morning stroll trough Šolta's oldest village

Šolta is a beautiful island to explore, don't you agree? After spending a few days touring the island, visiting secluded beaches and bays and enjoying amazing food, it's time to spend a nice and quiet morning in Grohote, Šolta's main village. 
Grohote lies in the heart of the island, at the intersection of the road connecting Stomorska and Maslinica, the two farthest villages on the island, and leading to the port of Rogač. Šolta’s oldest and largest settlement has always been the economic and administrative centre of the island, despite the fact that, historically, its inhabitants were mostly lime-burners, farmers and fishermen. 
The village and its architecture will definitely charm you, so we created a short list of things to see in Grohote to save you from getting overwhelmed!


While walking through the village, you will definitely notice the impressive tower that dominates its centre. There is no historical data on construction of this beautiful castle called Slavića kula (Slavić tower) but it is known that the tower was property of De Benedettis, a noble family from Split, and their heirs - family Vitturi. Slavić tower provided a safe place at a time when the island was under attack by pirates. Today, the tower is the headquarters of the Šolta Municipality, and the stone courtyard is often used as the stage on which many cultural events take place.


 In the vicinity of Slavić tower you'll find the estate that was property of the Fraternity of St. Stephen the First Martyr, patron saint of the parish church in Grohote. Members of the Fraternity (bratims) used to meet, produce and store wine, oil and other goods there. Houses and other farm buildings, the property of fraternities on Šolta, are called fraternity houses (bratske kuće). This fraternity house was also used as the first school on the island and even today it serves its purpose by being the place where cultural and social events take place. 

If you take a stroll through this beautiful yard you'll find a library, a tourist office and a gallery. The gallery is open during July and August, every day from 9 to 11 am and 6 to 9 pm. That is your opportunity to discover colours of local art!


When in Grohote you can also visit Buktenica & Buktenica Gallery. Situated at the centre, in Šoltanskih iseljenika street,  this gallery represents artistic space with a permanent exhibit of the two most famous painters of Šolta´s naive art: Eugen Buktenica Đenko and his heir Vicko Buktenica.


The Church of St. Stephen the First Martyr was built next to the ruins of an early Christian basilica from 5th century. The early Christian basilica was probably in use until the 13th century when, in one of their many attacks, it was demolished and burned by pirates from Omiš. The floor mosaics in the ruins of the basilica and numerous sarcophagi located in the cemetery next to the church are evidence of the rich history of this village. 

The old cemetery next to the church is known for another thing: the grave of the most important Croatian poetess of the 20th century, Vesna Parun. 


Last but not least, we saved the sweetest thing for the end of our list! If you decide to visit Tvrdić honey bee farm you'll get the opportunity to learn about fascinating lives of bees and experience the true natural way of living. There you can find the sweetest souvenirs to remind you of your pleasant stay on the island. 

 author: ZK