The Okit Crown

architect Nikola Bašić
project Church of Our Lady of Mount Karmel, Okit, Croatia
written by Jasminka Rusan


It takes knowledge to pick the right stone,

find the foothold and the place, measure

the angle at which its edges line up with the stars…


It takes true knowledge to tell how it chips off

and how it assumes the burden of the stars.

It takes a stone to know the skill of striking

A perfect balance between the Sun and the Earth.

“Dry-stone wall” by Jakša Fiamengo


While approaching the town of Vodice by road from Zadar or Šibenik, or while making the port aboard a ship, deny a view to the sea and give it to the rocks instead. The eye should reach as far as the rolling ash-grey inland karst landscape and the prominent hill above the town. People call it Okit. What makes it so prominent are its solitary position and a whitewashed crown glimmering in the air, the Church of our Lady of the Mount Carmel.


Skillfully laid on the top of the hill, as if it were its natural peak, the church completes the spiral of the Via Dolorosa rising from the foothill.