In the 16th century a fort was erected over the town to protect it from the Turks and by the 19th century Jelsa had grown into a prosperous fishing village.
In the central Baroque square, there is a Baroque St. John’s church together with several Baroque houses owned by the richer inhabitants of Jelsa.
The picturesque peninsula of Gradina is a location where an Augustinian hermitage was established in 1599 and replaced by the cemetery in 1807. An ancient castrum stood there in Roman times.
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