Best things to see in Sinj
While not necessarily the most famous town in Croatia, Sinj has a long lasting history and culture that you must not miss. Located in the county of Split-Dalmatia, Croatia. The town is also located in the heart of the Dalmatian hinterland, the area more so famously known as Cetinjska krajina, a fertile field area through which the river Cetina passes, the area being home to a couple of settlements.
The town lies between four mountains: Svilaja, Dianara, Kamešnica and Visoka. Due to the placement of the mountains you can expect hotter summers and colder winters.
Luckily Croatia is scattered with hidden small beauties all around it’s premises. From beautiful coastal towns to rustic but charming mountain homes, Croatia is for anyone and everyone. Get ready for a journey into and around the town of Sinj where you will experience various cultural activities and architecture.
Most likely the most famous thing about Sinj, the Sinjska alka is an equestrian competition that commemorates Croatian-Venetian victory over Ottomans on 14th of August 1715. The sport is rather quite simple in terms of how you play it, the basic principle being to score as many points as possible by piercing 1 of 4 spots. The horsemen ride at full gallop speed towards a hanging metal ring (alka) with their spear aimed at it which they use to try to pierce one of four areas. A cannon firing when the middle 3 point area is hit in particular. The sport also gained entry to be protected under UNESCO in 2010.
Alka is played every year in August only in the city of Sinj. In order to participate in the Alka you would have had to be born in Sinj or a surrounding village, participating being seen as a great privilege. Participants can also climb up to achieve the title Vojvoda (Duke) of Alka if they gain enough reputation. Another interesting thing is that the uniforms worn by Alkar men are the same ones worn by 18th century warriors. The uniforms comprised of lavishly decorated materials which used to be worn by the higher social class.
History of Sinj
The area of today’s Sinj was inhabited all the way back during the Neolithic. Whilst it is not certainly known when Croats came to the area, Konstantin VII. Porfirogenet did name the Sinj region all the way back in the 10th century.
Kamičak Fort – Likely the most scenic and memorable symbol of Sinj, positioned in the very centre of the town. The building is a star-shaped fort, built in 1712. On the south-west side the fort is joined to the cavalry baracks of Alka Knights Court. The fort also has a tower with a clock that rings 3 minutes before the hour, and ticking on the hour.
Old Town – Remnants of the old fortress, that the people of Sinj merely call the Town has adapted and become what Sinj is today. The fortress harbored the people and soldiers during Turkish invasions, protected the weak and also resisted invaders.
At the Spring (Luca) – The first sculpture made public by Stipe Sikirica, the statue depicts a girl drinking water from a spring. More locally known as Luca among the residents of Sinj. The statue is rather beautiful and dates back to the year 1957. when artisan Stipe Sikirica built her.
Gaius Laberius – A tombstone of a seven year old Roman boy holding a ball with hexagons. The depiction is considered firm evidence that football in Europe was first played in Cetinska Krajina region; seems like this sport has lived a long life all things considered.
Museums of Sinj
Alka museum – If you are a fan of museums you will surely enjoy this high standards museum, both in terms of presentation and technology. On display you’ll see a wide variety of uniforms, equipment and weapons used by the Alkars of Sinj. Statues and rule books decorate the museums in a modern digital form.
The Collection of the Franciscan Monastery – Widely considered to be one of the oldest and most precious collections in Croatia. Founded in 1860 by diligent Father Ante Konstantin Matas, a great humanist and reformers. The Collection’s foundation began when archeologists found the head of the half-god Heracles at Čitluk, an exceptionally rich archeological site.
Museum of the Cetinska Krajina Region – If you are interested in splendid cultural and historical heritage of Cetinska Krajina Region you will surely enjoy visiting this museum. The museums have exhibits of Archaeological, numismatic, cultural-historical, ethnographic and natural-science collection. The exhibits making it an interesting place to visit in order to learn more about Croatian history. 🙂
Summary of Sinj
Sinj is home to some rather exciting things, the Sinjska Alka, historic architecture, museums, etc. A rather quiet town all things considered but that’s just what makes Sinj a perfect place to go to to relax and enjoy your vacation at.
But it’s always nice to go out there and visit other towns, parks, attractions. Fill your adventure spirit up by going on some tours or possibly to another nearby town like Split. The adventure is only just starting for you! 🙂