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Baljenac - The Tiny Croatian Finger Print Island

Ancient city walls, emerald waterfalls, gladiator arenas, moon-like islands, and blue lagoons are just a few of the sights to behold. It sounds like something out of a fantasy story, doesn't it? Croatia, on the other hand, has everything. This Croatian island Baljenac (also known as Bavljenac), is also known as Fingerprint Island!

Baljenac island (sometimes spelled Bavljenac island) is a small island in the Adriatic Sea off the coast of Croatia, part of the Sibenik archipelago. It is home to a small community of people. It is a small islet about half a square mile in size that is completely surrounded by a series of dry-stone walls that, when viewed from above, resemble a massive human fingerprint due to the oval form of the walls and the long rows of stones that look like papillary lines on the walls.

An aerial view of baljenac; close up shot of baljenac island
An aerial view of baljenac; close up shot of baljenac island

The Island Of Baljenac

People frequently inquire as to who was responsible for "creating" the fingerprint island. Is it a result of human activity? Is it a natural wonder of the world? The answer is, in fact, both! The structure of the stone drywalls on the island, known as suhozid in Croatian, gives the island its distinctive appearance. For such a small space (0.014km2), the length of the dry stone walls is just mind-boggling: there are more than 23 kilometers of stone drywall on this little plot of land.

The walls are set into the ground in wavy, circular motions, giving them the appearance of ridges on a human finger. When combined with the round shape of the area, the courses of the stone walls give the island its distinctive appearance, which when viewed from above, is undeniably reminiscent of a human fingerprint.

In order to protect crops from severe winds, Baljenac, a tiny Croatian island, is surrounded by 22 kilometers of labyrinth-like stone walls, which were constructed in the 19th century or maybe earlier than the nineteenth century.

These "lines" are used to establish agricultural borders in order to protect crops from severe winds. They are comprised of an elaborate 14-mile-long network of stone walls that serve as a windbreak.

An aerial view of baljenac finger print island
An aerial view of baljenac finger print island

The Baljenac Suhozid

The fingerprint island is located right off the shore of ibenik, which is the oldest Croatian town in the Adriatic and the oldest settlement founded by Croatians. Baljenac is located exactly next to the island of Kaprije in the town of ibenik, and the inhabitants of Kaprije exploited the tiny island as a sort of agricultural area. With their bare hands, they cleared the tough vegetation on Baljenac and constructed the stone walls that now stand there, all in order to establish vineyards and orchards where they could grow figs and other fruit.

Their efforts were rewarded, as the dry stone constructions have survived to this day, as have many other sites along Croatia's coast, such as the Velebit mountain range and the island of Pag, which are well worth visiting. Now that they are protected by UNESCO, these hand-built dry stone walls serve as a poignant reminder of a time when people had to rely on their physical strength and fortitude in order to find ways to cultivate crops in difficult conditions.

Exactly because of their persistence and dedication, they were able to survive in the difficult but magnificent karst landscape of the Adriatic coast.

It is not the only place where these extraordinary walls can be found; in fact, the majority of Croatian countryside, as well as other western European countries such as Ireland, England, and Scotland, have adopted the same construction technique, but this islet stands out for its natural beauty and uniqueness.

Natural features such as its odd natural shape and exquisite geometric textures, along with the breathtaking aerial perspective, make it a one-of-a-kind location. In fact, the Croatian government has requested that UNESCO add this island to its list of World Heritage Sites.

But people have some concerns about this on Reddit. Check some comments given below.

"Are you sure the walls were to protect from the wind here?

In that region, this was done everywhere, not just where there are strong winds, to clear the soil of the rocks, to be able to plant anything. Not saying you are wrong, just curious where that info came from?"

-Mrkvica16

"Yeah sounds like those nature show narrators trying to figure out animals' behavior."

-Grogosh

"You're right. Anywhere the land is full of rocks - England's Lake District, for example - you'll get drystone walls. Either to make it possible to plant any kind of crop at all, or to keep cattle enclosed for grazing - and to have grass you also need to clear rocks away."

-corcyra

but some took it in a funny way.

"The mitochondria is the powerhouse of a cell"

-accidentalquitter

"Beat to it by 2 minutes"

-buffhello

Can You Visit Baljenac?

In addition to countless natural and historic treasures that are well-known on an international scale, it is worthwhile to visit some of the country's lesser-known but as distinctive sights. Another is the island Baljenac (also known as Bavljenac), which is also recognized as the Fingerprint Island!

Conclusion

You don't have to look farther than the 6278 km of the Adriatic coast in Croatia to be impressed by the creative force of nature. Wonderfully contoured shorelines with various coves, pebble, and gravel sand beaches are adorned with 1244 islands, islets, cliffs, and reefs. Croatia has some amazing beaches like Baljenac-the tiny Croatian fingerprint island, a fish-like island, or a heart-shaped island and whatnot.

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