First, there are several historic sights: the town has a long and interesting history. It had a strategic importance in the Middle Ages and was fortified with walls. Although they’re no longer standing, it’s why the old town core features so many narrow streets and buildings – space was precious inside the heavy fortified walls. The main sights are the 17th century St. Mark’s Cathedral and the 16th century Franciscan monastery: the latter now houses thousands of books in its ancient library, and even an exquisite collection of seashells from all over the world.
Beautiful beaches are plentiful in Makarska. Most of them are public pebble beaches suitable for kids: there are, however, several hotel-owned beaches reserved for their guests only. Taking a swim in the crystal clear Adriatic or just lying in the shades of a pine tree is worth the visit alone.
Makarska Square and St. Mark's Cathedral; source: panoramio.com
Nightlife is exciting as well. Numerous clubs and beach bars usually throw a party every night for the entire summer, hosting both domestic and foreign bands and DJs. Since they play various genres of music, everyone should find something for themselves.
2 km long central town beach; source: world66.com
You should also visit the mountain of Biokovo: Makarska is actually located in the foot of the mountain, which is a law protected Nature Park, known for its plant and animal life. It’s a great hiking opportunity as the look at the top is spectacular. The hike itself is not too hard, but be sure to bring the necessary gear.
Spectacular cave bar; source: worldaddicted.weebly.com
The closest major airport is in Split, and you can reach Makarska from there by taxi (there are taxi services at Split airport which can take you directly to Makarska) or by bus. Lines are frequent in the summer: you can expect a bus every two hours or so from Split’s main bus station. The same goes if you’re coming from Zagreb bus terminal – several bus companies operate daily lines to Makarska, so reaching the town should not be a problem.
Biokovo mountain; source: pp-biokovo.hr
Since it’s a tourist focal point, there are dozens of hotels in Makarska, varying in price and quality – although the majority are two-star or three-star hotels. A lot of locals rent rooms or apartments in Makarska or nearby places to tourists as well: this kind of service doesn’t include meals, but the rooms and apartments are more than decent (it also costs less than an average hotel). If you plan to stay at a hotel, be sure to book earlier since they’re always full in the peak of the season from mid July to late August. If, however, you want to rent a room or apartment, you don’t have to book early. There are plenty of locals holding signs saying “rooms” or “apartments” at bus stations, hoping you’ll choose to stay at their place.
Makarska port and Biokovo in background; source: wikimedia.org