Kvarner newsletter / no 8

Island of Susak
Nostalgia and beauty – magnet for visitors

The last Sunday in July is the day when Susak's emigrants traditionally gather on their native island. This year the island will host the event for the 23rd time.

On the 29th of July, the island of Susak celebrates the Day of Emigrants. Most of the emigrants from the island and their descendants settled in Haboken and New Jersey in the USA. The meeting of 250-300 emigrants from Susak will include a series of sport events and entertainment programmes.

It is estimated that ca. 2500 inhabitants of the island of Susak now live in the USA, which means that ca. 10 percent of them come to their homeland each year. In the past, many inhabitants of the islands emigrated abroad in search of a better life. The emigrants from Susak, however, did not scatter all over the world, but settled mainly in the state of New Jersey where they continued with their customs, gathered in the church and founded associations to keep the memory of their homeland. Some of them are now buying their old houses that their ancestors sold many years ago, thus providing a place to stay for their children and a growing number of American friends.  

There are many reasons why they do that – not only emotional ones. Susak is a very beautiful island of 3.7 square kilometres. It is covered with a thick layer of sand, which makes this island quite a unique natural phenomenon. The inhabitants of the island traditionally cultivated vines and fished, so the visitors to the island can be sure that here they will be offered healthy Mediterranean food and drink the island's indigenous excellent wine. If you stay in a private room, your friendly hosts will give you the opportunity to experience the traditional way of living on the island. Susak is also known for its memorable women's traditional costumes with "mini skirts", which are another reason why emigrants and visitors cannot forget this really unique island. Line ships connect the island of Susak daily to Mali Lošinj and Rijeka.