The area is covered in marshes and wetlands, a sight quite different than the surrounding Mediterranean landscape,and the vicinity or Herzegovina greatly shaped the social and historical landscape of this place. The Neretva River and its delta are vital for the people living here and you will get the best view of the entire valley when ascending on a hill on your way to Dubrovnik. Metković is the hub of the valley, a former river port boasts with the interesting Ornithological Museum, a nice promenade by the river and the annual Marathon boat-race.
VID, WHOPPING SMALL TOWN
Located 3km north of Metković, and a place definitely worth of visiting! It is surrounded by the swamp vegetation of a sunken valley that hides „the Atlantida of Neretva“ – Narona, the second most important Roman town in Dalmatia after Salona near Split. Parts of its rampart, visible along the hill, today function as house walls, to find out the rest of the story, visit the Narona Museum. If you turn right before the bridge leading to Vid, there is the church dedicted to St Vitus. The church of Our Lady of Snow is on a hilltop where you can also find the monument to the Croatian duke Domagoj who guards the valley with his archers in a traditional boat called Neretvan lađa. The gazebo on the hilltop offers a splendid view of the valley.
NARONA ARCHAEOLOGICAL MUSEUM
The museum in Vid is the first in situ museum in Croatia. It is built on an archaelogical site – Roman temple named Augusteum. Narona was a roman colony, dwarfed only by Salona in size and importance, which connected the Adriatic with the inland. More than 900 exhibits are inside the building, there is a small archaelogical park on the north side and some interesting outdoor exhibits, the remnants of early Christian basilicas from the 5th and 6th century, city walls and Ereš Tower with Latin inscriptions.
FOLORA AND FAUNA
Prepare your cameras and binoculars, this is one of the last swamps in Europe. The valley is a place of great biodiversity, home to numerous frogs, waders and fish, it is worth mentioning that the valley is abundant in eels which are spawning in the Sargasso Sea and travel a great distance towards Europe. Wetlands spread along the valley and if you ignore boring mosquitoes, you will revel the view of a splendid landscape. Hills surrounding the valley have very interesting flora, mixture of sedges, macchia and conifers.
Its source is in southern Bosnia and largely flows through Herzegovina, adorning oriental parts of Mostar and Počitelj, some 20 km of the river is located in Croatia and the mouth is near Ploče, the important industrial town and port. The Neretva Delta in Croatia is planned to be set aside as a nature park in the near future. In the past malaria was common in the delta and it was contained with the draining of marshes. The evaporation of wetlands is especially noticeable in the area on evenings.
MARATHON OF NERETVAN LAĐA
„Neretvan pirates“ today use their boats only for sports events. On second Saturday in August the marathon boat race is held on the Neretva River and the rowing course is 22,5 km long. Try not to miss the start of the race near the bridge in Metković where 300 rowers in 30 traditional boats are greeted by more than 20000 spectators.
If you want a day tour or transfer to this beautiful region, just ask at the reception and will arrange everything!
Text is taken from Dubrovnik – The Riviera and islands by J. Žilić, D. Pek and F.Kozina