Tuesday 21 Nov 2017


The name of the island Issa originates from 3000 years BC.
In the 6th – 5th century BC Issa was ruled by Ionius. He established the first Illyrian state in the Adriatic. The local Illyrian population learned the more sophisticated and advanced way of land cultivation from the Greeks who came later. When Dionysius Jr. ruled over Issa, it became a free democratic polis "city-state". It Spread its commercial- and trade network over the colonies such as Lumbarda (at the island Korcula), Tragurion (Trogir), Epetion (Stobrec), and Salona (Solin), and got very powerful. The ancient Issa represents the oldest urban nucleus in these parts of the world. It was situated on the north part of the bay, on the place called Gradina. As other Greek towns, it was surrounded by walls. These are partly preserved. Thanks to favourable circumstances, Issa flourished for a very long time, until the conflict with the Illyrian king Argon and with queen Teuta ca 229 - 219 BC. Thinking that Issa wouldn't be able to confront the attack of queen Teuta, it asked the Roman republic to help. This alliance with Rome prospered economically.

The goddes Issa of Vis

When barbaric tribes started bursting into the Roman Empire the economic power of big centers declined. This happened to Salona with which Issa was closely connected. The island gradually got weaker, the life of the city slowly but surely extinguishes, and communities continued living in the Roman Villae Rusticae scattered on the whole island. Some of these Villae later became bigger rural communities.
In the 7th and 8th century AD the Croats settled on the island. They merged very quickly with the natives of Greek and Roman origin.

The name of the island turned into its present version - Vis. The Croatian name is mentioned in the work of Constantine Porfirogeneth.
By the arrival of Croats Vis develops into one of the most important war-maritime footholds on the East Adriatic. The population was mainly dealing in wine-growing and cattle-breading (goats, sheep).
The Croatian diocese was established in 1154, because that was the only way in which Venetia could diminish the resistance of Dalmatia. The islands gathered under the powerful Split archbishop's diocese. So, in 1185 the islands Brac, Hvar, Vis, Lastovo and Korcula were under the Hvar diocese. At that time Benedictines came to Vis, on the island Biševo and in Komica where they founded their monasteries and build churches. When the fleet of the Naples-Aragon's king Ferrante attacked Vis and destroyed Velo Selo in 1483, the inhabitants left it and went to the coast to St. Juraj Port. They founded two settlements: Luka at the west side of the bay and Kut on the east side. These two settlements existed until 1579. By treaty of Peace at Campoformi in 1797 Vis got under the rule of Austria. In 1805 Austrian domination turned into French domination. Vis became an international centre of smugglers and pirates.
At that time, France was dominated legally but in theory it was actually governed by the English. England appointed Sir George Duncan Robertson as Governor of Vis. This situation became unacceptable to Napoleon who decided to take its domination by force. In the battle of Vis in 1811, the French fleet was defeated. The English who were already aware of the strategic importance of Vis, rapidly and dexterously fortified the Vis harbour. At the west entrance they built fortress King George, on the east fortress Wellington, over the bay Svitnja fortress Bentic and fortification Robertson. So, in the middle of the French dominion, Vis became a base for the fight against the French. In fact, the English became the rulers of the Adriatic when they started governing Vis.
After the Vienna Congress in 1815, Vis got under the rule of the Habsburg Monarchy. They did not invest much in Vis, yet they realised its strategic importance, so they built fortress Battery. This proved to be extremely important, because Vis rejected the first attack of the Italian fleet in 1866. After that success, in 1873 the Monarchy ordered that Vis should be disarmed and towers and fortresses destroyed.


one of the sunken ships nearby VisThe island Vis is situated 45 km from the main land, and is one of the bigger island in Dalmatia. An 8-km wide channel divides Vis from the island Hvar. The surface of the island is 90.3 km2, and the surface of the Vis archipelago (Palagruza, Biševo, Sv. Andrija, Budihova, Jabuka, Brusnik, etc.) is ca 103 km2. The length of the coast of Vis is about 77 km. Vis is connected to Hvar, Split and Ancona (in the summer) by regular ferry lines.
The protected submarine is world rich with sunken ships and magic marine images that have been hidden for years.
Relax on secluded beaches of numerous peaceful bays, in transparent blue sea and under the hot sun of Vis. Spend your time in historic ambience of mediaeval cities of Vis and Komica that echo the voices of a cappella singers and treat your soul with visits to Archaeological Museum and Museum of Fisheries.
Accompanied by professional experiences diving instructors one can see sunken boats, dive among red and yellow gorgoneia, get to know Blue and other caves, discover the secrets of ancient wrecks.
caves at Vis

vieuw over Vis

vieuw over Vis


Komiza Vis

lighthouse at Vis

monastery Pirovo on Vis

St Nicholas monastery Vis

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