VRBNIK - an ancient town of inspiring beauty

Vrbnik is an ideal choice for your family and romantic vacation. You will be enchanted with its old town core, historical heritage, interesting beaches, tastes of wine and original Krk dishes and unique vistas ...

You just have to see Vrbnik! Vrbnik is situated on the east coast of the island of Krk in Kvarner Bay. The old town settled above the sea is really enchanting. This ancient, stone-built town, which appears to be emerging from the sea and immersing into the blue sky above it, was built in harmony with nature. Vrbnik has around 900 inhabitants during the winter period and around 2000 inhabitants during summer. Vrbnik is the right choice for all who do not prefer mass tourism but are in search of original Mediterranean charm. The one who experiences Vrbnik once always comes back... Find out why! 

Vrbnik and wine heritage

Vrbnik is also widely known by its autochthonous sort of wine grape called Vrbnička žlahtina. You can try that well known dry white wine, as other Krk specialties in one of numerous wine-cellars / taverns (konoba) and restaurants in Vrbnik.

Discover Vrbnik and the island of Krk

The location of Vrbnik on the Island of Krk allows You to reach all the major places on the Island in 20 minutes drive only. That`s why Vrbnik is an ideal starting point for your discovery excursions on the Island of Krk.

We have prepared for you a wide choice of excursions by boat and by car in order to experience and explore our island and its surroundings.

 We invite you to take a virtual tour of Vrbnik with interactive 360° panoramic photos.

Vrbnik as a source of inspiration

Vrbnik has always been a place ideal for artists. Its beauty that inspires can be seen in hidden corners and unexpected places and many find inspiration for their artistic achievements here.

History, architecture and cultural heritage enthusiasts will be delighted by the historic town center that houses magnificent monuments, churches and chapels of marvelous architecture. There is also a rich Glagolitic heritage as well as folk costumes, traditional dances and the recognizable sound of “sopele” (ancient traditional woodwind instrument).

Vrbnik is the perfect choice if you travel with people who do not share your love of history, sightseeing and cultural heritage. We assure you that not only you, but also such travelers will be enchanted and inspired by the old historical center, by passing through the narrowest alleyway in the world, by getting to know Glagolitic manuscripts, by visiting a number of beautiful monuments and by the architecture of the town.

Beaches in Vrbnik and surroundings

  • The beach Zgribnica is in the center of Vrbnik.
  • We definitely recommend that you discover the beach Kozica, which is reached by a 10-minute walk through a pine grove.
  • In the port of Vrbnik, there is the beach Pod kovač, which is illuminated by the sun in the morning and in the shade in the afternoon.
  • About 2 km from Vrbnik there is a beautiful beach Potovošće which can be reached by asphalt road. Next to it, there is a parking lot (in summer for a fee), and at the beach Potovošće there is also a small beach bar.
  • In the vicinity of Vrbnik, there are very beautiful beaches that are accessible only from the sea. Take the opportunity to swim on them on panoramic excursions by taxi boats.
  • If you are coming on vacation with a pet, there is also a dog beach Mala Javna, located between Vrbnik and Risika.

Events in Vrbnik

Many events are given in summertime on old town square Placa and on Škujica square – concerts, presentations, literary evenings, folklore festivals... There are several art galleries in the old town in which interesting exhibitions are organized during summer. During summer you can dance along with a live music band on Škujica square.

  • On the 24th of June there is festivity called Ivanja, St.John the Baptist's Day in Vrbnik – the town celebrates its protector St. John the Baptist. It is a great opportunity for attending a forenoon mass in the parish church, an especially festive mass in old Slavic language. In the evening a big festivity is held on Škujica square – welcome! 
  • We recommend to all music lovers to visit Vrbnik 's parish church on Great Friday. On that day a confraternity called Kapari (capers), which has been active from 14th century AD, sings fascinating chants that are qualified as invaluable Croatian passion heritage. 
  • Wine days are held on last weekend in August. It is an opportunity for tasting not only varieties of Vrbnička žlahtina wine made by all wine producers with certificates from Vrbnik but also for tasting chosen wines and delicacies from other Croatian regions that take part in this event. 
  • There is a cultural and entertainment program called “Srijedom u Vrbniku” (Wednesdays in Vrbnik), which takes place mid-June to mid-September, every Wednesday at another location.

Vrbnik - the cradle of the Glagolitic alphabet

Vrbnik is known worldwide for its exceptional Glagolitic cultural heritage. Glagolitic script is the oldest Croatian script dating from the 9th century AD and, significantly, one-quarter of all preserved Glagolitic manuscripts are from Vrbnik. 

For centuries, Vrbnik has been an important cultural Glagolitic center with a Glagolitic scriptorium producing the many preserved manuscripts. Many of which are now kept in renowned world libraries.

The first Croatian printer of Glagolitic works, Blaž Baromić, founder of the Senj printing company, was also raised in Vrbnik.

Most of Vrbnik's Glagolitic heritage is kept in the Vitezic Family Library, founded by Dr. Dinko Vitezić. It was opened to the public on July 10th, 1910, and is now located on the second floor of the former Rector's Palace (Knežev dvor), situated on the Square of Vrbnik Statute (Placa Vrbničkog statute).

It contains numerous valuable books, Glagolitic missals and breviaries, various newspapers and magazines, correspondence of Dr. Dinko Vitezić, newspaper clips, book of ceremonies at the former emperor's court in Vienna, records and books of the Vienna parliament.

A rare and valuable exhibit is the famous "Atlas scolasticus et itinerarius" by Johann David Koehler, printed in 1718 in Nuernberg. In addition to this copy, there is only one another copy of Atlas, printed in 1735, and kept in Cambridge, England. This Atlas is especially interesting because, apart from the geographic locations of countries, it also contains images of old sailboats, weapons, medals and constellations.

Should you be given the opportunity to visit Vrbnik, pay a visit to the former Rector's Palace and inspect the Vitezić Family Library, an interesting ethnological collection and a reconstructed wooden Renaissance printing house.

Short notes on Vrbnik's history

Vrbnik is one of the oldest settlements on the island. Its close area was inhabited in prehistory - the earliest archaeological artifacts found in Vrbnik's vicinity can be dated as early as 4000 years B.C. (Neolithic Age). Just opposite of Vrbnik, on a hill-top overlooking Vrbnik's harbor from the north, are remains of a Bronze Age settlement (1200 y.B.C.) whose thick dry-stone walls can still be seen. There is also material evidence of life left by Illyrian tribes Japodi and Liburni (Iron Age) and Romans living in the Vrbnik area.

At the turn of the 6th into the 7th century, the island was inhabited by Croats who build a well-fortified town on the inaccessible rock, which has been shown to be a great defense in the wars.

Vrbnik was first mentioned by that name in „Deed of Donation of Glorious Dragoslav“ dating from 1100.y.A.D. Many ruins of small churches and chapels can be seen in and around Vrbnik, some of them more than 1000 years old.

The history of Vrbnik is closely related to Frankopan counts of Krk. The Frankopan family- princes of Krk played a significant role in the history of Krk and Croatia. It is said that they called their possessions in and around Vrbnik their patrimony, which may imply their Vrbnik origin. The ruins of their oldest known castle Gradec can still be seen near the Vrbnik Field.

Under the rule of Frankopan family Vrbnik flourished and reached its peak as a well-organized urban environment in which life was regulated by the Vrbnik Statute of 1388. It was written in Croatian in the Glagolitic script (by origin, it is the second Croatian Statute of that kind). The Vrbnik Statute is a very important source of knowledge in Medieval law and also a splendid testimony on the high civilization level of the town in that period. 

Sights in Vrbnik

  • the parish church of Assumption of the Virgin Mary with its very interesting painted ceiling and the lovely Gothic chapel of Rosary.
  • the parish church bell-tower and its adjoining object in which are located Museum of Visual Identity of Vrbnik, Lapidarium and collection of archeological artifacts and sacral paintings.
  • in former princes palace on the old town square – Placa – are located Vitezić family Library, an interesting hometown collection and reconstruction of Renaissance printing machine. Did you know that the first Croatian printer, Blaž Baromić, was from Vrbnik? 
  • a street that goes between the parish church and bell-tower will bring you to belvedere with a  beautiful view on the mainland, and if you continue walking down Pod Keštel street, you can see remains of town wall and tower and also continue enjoying in the magnificent view of the sea and the mainland. 
  • you can also check whether you are slim enough to pass through Klančić - a passage often said to be the narrowest street in the world... 



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