The River Cetina and its Canyon, Croatia

River-Cetina-Canyon Deep in the interior of Zagora, under the slopes of the highest Dinaric crest, rises the longest central Dalmatian river: the Cetina.


The river has its source from eleven karstic „vrila“ (springs) and the principal spring Glavas ili Milasevo in the form of lake is situated near the small village of Cetina. That lake-like spring of turquoise blue colour is about 130 ms deep.

Not far away from it there are the ruins of old Croatian church St. Saviour from the 9th century.

The Cetina's flow becomes navigable only some 24 km downstream from Glavas, in south-east before joining the artificial lake of Peruca. Being the principal source in the region she supplies it so generously with water.


After leaving the Peruca lake, Cetina widens when entering the Sinj's plain and continues quietly crossing its fields.


After passing Sinj's valley, from Trilj to thePrancevic's dam, during 7 km, she slows down her course, but entering into her 50 km long canyon bound by high cliffs she suddenly becomes wild and unpredictable.

On one of the canyon's walls still rise the ruins of a medieval fortress Nutjak from the 15th century.

Here, between the Kamesnica and Mosor,and her plunging and rugged gorges her banks become narrower and deeper. The river itself is more profound and rapid, just perfect for experienced kayakers and canoeists.


She continues running south but not for long because near Bisko, after hitting Mosor, she directs her stem toward south-east. Then, at Sestanovac, she collides again but this time with Biokovo massif and so she turns her route south again.


But, as previously, not for long because near the village of Zadvarje, still in her deep canyon, Cetina suddenly turns to the left and falls in big waterfalls Velika and Mala Gubavica of some 49 ms.


Here, in her lower reaches, 21 km upstream from Omis there is an abrupt transition from the mountain to the plain, the throats tighten and the river streams become tumultuous thus creating the rapids ideal for rafting and canoeing-kayaking.

So, after leaving her gorges so dramatically, Cetina suddenly enters into a valley which has retained something of the appearance of a canyon. She continues winding its way to the west between the high cliffs of Mosor in the north and Omiska Dinara in the south.

Then, from the Radman's Mill to Zakucac lower in the estuary Cetina slows in the middle of some swampy stretches of half-sunken deciduous forest and poplar trees. During this 8 last kilometers, she and her banks full of isolated coves and small cliff-like islets are surrounded by dense riverine vegetation.


Finally, her last flows when crossing Omis's stone gate that loom over the town and river before entering the sea after 105 km, are truly dramatic and deserve a look.


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