Zlatni rat beach (Golden Horn or Golden Cape) is one of the most beautiful beaches of the Mediterranean, and thanks to its particular shape, it is also one of the most exceptional beaches in the world. Many world-famous business and travel magazines like the New York Times, National Geographic, the Insider Travel listed it many times in their articles as one of the most spectacular beaches in the world. Zlatni rat’s elegance and appeal have made it the symbol of both the town of Bol and Croatia, and the government of Croatia protects it as a geomorphological monument. But it is not just its shape that makes it so beautiful and unique. It is surrounded by the crystal clear sea that goes from turquoise blue to dark blue in just 10 to 20 meters, and it is bordered by decades-old pine trees planted by the locals to create some natural shade.
The beach is situated less than 2 km from the town of Bol, connected with a lovely promenade under the pine trees shade, along which you can find many other small beaches. This fascinating 500 meters long pebble beach has a unique shape, like a small peninsula that stretches into the sea with almost 900 meters of beach sea line on both sides. The area of the beach is over 20.000 square meters and can comfortably accommodate over 10.000 people. The curiosity about this beach is that it changes its shape and position depending on the wind, tide, and the current, and sometimes, the tip of the beach rotates so significantly that it forms a small pool. Usually, the mornings are windless, and the wind blows every afternoon, but one side of the beach always has calm water and offers perfect conditions for families with small children.
Interesting facts about Zlatni rat beach
First, let me tell you that many people ask if the Zlatni rat is a natural or man-made beach; it is a natural phenomenon and is solely built by nature without any kind of human intervention.
Most people make one mistake when imagining the beach: it is a sandy beach well; it is not a sandy beach. Zlatni rat beach is a pebble beach; pebbles are small fine round stones that are really nice to walk on. They are great to lay onto since they shape under you anatomically as the perfect mattress. The size of the pebbles is getting smaller as you are reaching the sea line.
Apart from its top moving and shifting from one side to the other, there are few other interesting facts about Zlatni rat beach. When the top is turning, there are times when it forms a lake on top of the beach as its point turns all the way to touch the beach back. Until the 1950s, the area that is now covered with pine trees used to be a vineyard. Only in 1950 government took possession of the land, and Bol municipality planted pine trees there.
Another interesting fact is that Zlatni rat beach is growing; it is getting longer over the years. The latest data shows that from 2006 until this year, Zlatni rat beach grew in length by roughly 80 meters. The Eastside was measured this year 500 meters (420 meters in 2006.), the west side measured 468 meters (360 meters in 2006.), and the center from the last tree to the top of the Zlatni rat is measured 197 meters (158 meters in 2006.).
What to do on Zlatni rat beach
Zlatni rat beach is famous among adrenaline junkies and those in love with windsurfing and kitesurfing. The strong thermic wind called “Maestral” regularly blows during nice weather, and it gives experienced windsurfers and kitesurfers the adrenaline they need. Nearby the beach, there are several windsurfing and kitesurfing centers where you can take lessons and rent the equipment.
But the beach also offers plenty of other interesting things to do for young children and adults like beach volley, parachute rides that give you an amazing bird’s eye view of the beach, jet ski, banana boat rides, enormous water park, etc. Near Zlatni rat you can also go scuba diving, play tennis or volleyball on the Borak beach. There are rental motorboats that you can rent and explore many other secluded beaches west and east of Bol. On Zlatni rat beach, you can also rent paddle boats with slides or kayaks for exploring the coastline. There are two restaurants just a few steps from the beach, where you can enjoy local specialties under the natural shade, and several stands where you can buy fresh fruit, smoothies, pancakes, etc.
Two curiosities to mention for all those planning a visit to Zlatni rat, the first one – don’t forget to visit the remnants of an ancient Roman Villa Rustica, hidden among the pine trees just a few meters from the beach. The second one is to see how lucky you are and find a “stone of happiness.” Well, it is a small stone that closes the seashell, looks like a snail fossil, and brings luck to its finder. You can probably find it on the whole beach, but the best place to search for them is on the west side beginning of the beach.
We cannot forget to mention that Zlatni rat beach has the “Blue Flag,” so be sure that you will find all the comforts you need, but most of all a clean beach and clean waters, so help us keep it that way.
Getting from Bol to Zlatni rat beach
For getting to Zlatni rat, you can choose one of four options. The least recommended way is by car since Bol is a tiny town and driving a car in the summer months is not really a pleasure. However, if you choose to go there by car, there is a large parking for you to leave your car there for the day (cost is 70 kuna ~ 9 EUR).
Really nice option is to walk from Bol to Zlatni rat beach by the sea, there is a beautiful promenade (walkway) in the shade of pine trees, and the walking from Bol is roughly 20-30 minutes easy and relaxed walking speed. Your third option is a street tourist train, that rides all day back and forth from Bol center (near petrol station) and costs roughly 2,5 EUR one way. The fourth and interesting option is taxi boats that go all day from Bol center straight to Zlatni rat beach. These are small taxi boats that carry from 20 to 50 people. The ride is fun along the coast and takes 10-15 minutes. It also costs roughly 2,5 EUR one way.