June 5, 2020 – The Our Lady of Sinj trail stretches on the route Solin – Sinj – Livno – Tomislavgrad – Rama and is 148 kilometers long.
Split-Dalmatia County, in cooperation with the Shrine of Our Lady Sinj, HGSS branch Split, the Split-Dalmatia County Tourist Board, the cities of Sinj, Solin, municipalities Dicmo, Dugopolje and Klis, the Tourist Boards of Sinj and Solin, and the municipalities of Dugopolje and Klis have joined forces to renovate and upgrade the Our Lady of Sinj trail, which will take place in three project phases.
The Our Lady of Sinj trail stretches on the route Solin – Sinj – Livno – Tomislavgrad – Rama and is 148 kilometers long. It is a pilgrimage route that, from several directions, has been walked for centuries to the largest Mary shrine in southern Croatia. The Our Lady of Sinj trail project has been approved under the IPA Croatia – Bosnia and Herzegovina program and relies on traditional hiking and horse trails and the abandoned route of the Rera, the former Sinj railway.
After the official completion of the project in 2015, there were numerous devastations on the track itself. Therefore, with the aim of further evaluation, Split-Dalmatia County initiated its renovation, but also a symbolic pilgrimage on the eve of the celebration of the Feast of the Assumption.
Already this Saturday, June 6, the first organized pilgrimage of medical staff begins, as a vow and thanks for the successful fight against COVID-19. The starting point is from Solin at 5 am in front of the Church of Our Lady of Otok, and their arrival in Sinj is expected at around 3 pm. There will be a Mass in the church of Miraculous Lady of Sinj. Pilgrimages are conceived as a novena on the Saturday before the celebration of the Feast of the Assumption. The Sinj Tourist Board, therefore, invites all those interested to join them in this unique and noble journey with contemplation and meditation.
Mary shrines have always had a special place in the hearts of believers. They worshiped and venerated the Blessed Virgin Mary and prayed to her for help in difficult times and troubles. They trusted in her heavenly intercession, honoring her out of gratitude as the queen of the Croats. Throughout history, she was also called the fidelissima advocata Croatiae (the most faithful lawyer of Croats).
Every year, on the eve of the Feast of the Assumption, on the nights between August 8 and 15, thousands of pilgrims, especially young people, go on a pilgrimage to the town of Sinj, and on August 15, a central religious ceremony is held. Accompanied by the celebration of bells and the playing of fanfares, the image of the Miraculous Lady of Sinj is taken from the church in a solemn procession through the streets of the city. It is a great honor to carry this image on your shoulders.
The historical connection between the faithful and Our Lady’s shrines is enhanced on the eve of September 8, the feast of the Assumption, the celebration of the birth of the Blessed Virgin Mary, which is especially solemnly celebrated in Solin, in the Shrine of Our Lady of Otok. Rivers of pilgrims will flow from Sinj to Solin, as well as from many other places in Croatia.
It is a special experience to set off on foot along the ancient paved paths on a spiritual journey, away from the city noise, and to find peace and refuge in the safe shelter of Our Lady. Pilgrims will take the votive step to the Immaculate Virgin Mary, Mother of our Lord Jesus Christ, along marked paths through picturesque areas rich in historical heritage. On the spiritual expedition to the Heavenly Mother, they will pass by the remains of old paths and bridges, along the forts, forts, stećak tombstones, sacral buildings and museums.
By developing the accompanying infrastructure and raising awareness of the immense value of cultural and religious heritage, the trail to Our Lady of Sinj is active throughout the year, not only during the feasts of the Assumption.
The trails to Our Lady of Sinj are an excellent example of the functional coexistence of tourism and religion without disturbing the natural balance.
A valuable contribution to the tourist offer of the city of Sinj, Cetina region and Split-Dalmatia County is proof of smart disposal of cultural and aesthetic values and natural resources, which certainly gives a positive boost to sustainable tourism, welfare and well-being of society as a whole.