“You must go there at sunset, it’s very romantic”
I cringed. I cringe everytime I hear that word uttered for the benefit of couples. Why is it necessary for some thing to be romantic to be of interest to a couple, I ask? (As an extension to that, I always skip lists describing romantic cafes, views and sunsets just for THAT word)
It’s okay, let’s keep an open mind and not disregard the suggestion for the sake of massive aversion to words, I told myself. So, one fine evening (which is basically every evening in Vis) while in the vicinity of Sveti Duh, we decided to explore the hill top and see what the fuss was all about. It is reached via a forty minutes uphill climb through thick virgin foliage.
Sveti Duh is the second highest peak in Vis. While most people head to Mt Hum, the highest peak in Vis, for sunset views, the lady at the bike rental shop suggested we skip that and visit Sveti Duh instead for the romanticness involved.
Reaching the top, we were welcomed by a pretty little stone church standing guard. A beautiful valley opened up in front of us cradling the town of Komiza and its rows of stone houses. Further on, Bisevo island with its magical blue cave dotted the open sea. A short distance away Mt Hum stood slightly taller but quite ordinarily with a military installation at its summit.
It hit me just how quiet it was up there. And then I realized the reason for that – there wasn’t a single soul around us. And when has that ever happened before, I asked myself. Of the numerous memorable golden hours, be it in Santorini, Dubrovnik or Siem Reap, there hasn’t been one which hasn’t been in the company of fellow beings, sometimes hundreds of them. THIS however was new. This was my own.
We explored around for a bit and soon the lady’s use of words became quite evident. It is just gorgeous up at Sveti Duh with spectacular views. As the evening descends, shadows fall slowly on the town of Komiza, its stone houses lose their fiery orange colour, boats return to the docks and the serpentine roads leading to the town turn quiet. In almost every direction the sea stares back at us, its calm surface broken by islands near and far. The horizon stretches out as far as the eye can see, first in a perfectly straight line and then blurring out in the settling mist.
We let the time slip by in the perfectness around us – sitting in quiet contemplation and then taking pictures while the sky turned a purply pink and the light breeze caressed us with a soft warmth. In front of us the sun, on this particular evening, played with the clouds, streaming rays down on the sea turning it golden.
That evening at Sveti Duh was the definition of magic, a piece of time shared privately with the elements of nature that make it worth living and yes, travelling for. The memory is forever locked away in that box – the one which when opened makes you all gooey inside.
Mt Hum is the more popular “sunset location with best views”. Ditch it. Go for Sveti Duh instead. And say my thank you to the lady at the bike rental shop on Vis town’s promenade.
Komiza town The sun is playing with the sea on this evening As is the case with most pictures, even this one doesn’t do justice to what the eyes saw
The beauty of Vis is in its compact size – the seas are visible in every direction at this height candy skies