Destination Climbing: Croatia

Miro Stec is living his dream on the island of Hvar, where he runs his adventure outfitter, Cliffbase in Sveta Nedjelja, a beautiful and wild slice of paradise.

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Miro, a climbing veteran from Slovakia with over 30+ years’ experience,  first started Cliffbase over a decade ago, and has been based in Sveta Nedjelja since.  Cliffbase is a one stop shop for adventures,  accommodations,  and the best wine and olive oil tasting this side of the Adriatic Sea.

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I’d first come across Cliffbase in my search for rock climbing guides in Croatia, and Miro came highly recommended by locals during my stay in Jelsa. We connected over email and phone, and Miro arranged a customized climbing excursion for me and introduced me to his climbing friends, who had traveled over 16 hours from Poland just to climb at this remote and well developed crag.

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Climbing at Cliffbase is private and by reservation only.  And for good reason,  as it really is a special place, and Miro strives to keep it this way.  Over the past decade, Miro has set 120 routes (ranging from 5a to 8a) with 3,000 bolts, literally putting Sveta Nedjelja on the sport climbing map.

In addition to arranging all things climbing (from entry to the crag to topo guides and equipment rental, e.g. shoes, harness,  rack and rope), Miro also arranges accommodation for climbers. There are basic options literally next to the crag that are akin eco-lux camping with hot water, flushing toilets, and a shared kitchen,  to apartment rentals closer to town.

But what makes Cliffbase an adventurers’ paradise is the array of après-climbing options – from kayaking on the Adriatic Sea to sunbathing on the big beach-facing boulders to tasting a glass of Miro’s award-winning red wines to sampling his homegrown olive oil to deep water soloing.  The choices are literally limitless.

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Miro made my first visit to Croatia a most memorable one, and I’ve every intention (and strong desire!) to return to Sveta Nedjelja and Cliffbase and tick another 6b off my list. Be sure to ask to try his award-winning red wine!

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