STARI GRAD, HVAR ISLAND - LOCAL AND TOURIST INFORMATION

Hvar island

Hvar island is the longest and the sunniest Croatian island It is a part of the central Dalmatian archipelago and has a length of 68 km and a maximum with width of only 10.5 km. Hvar is famed for its benign climate - it has over 2700 sunshine hours a year and its winters are exceptionally mild. The interior of Hvar is planted with olive groves and vineyards. Hvar olive groves provide excellent local olive oil. Hvar red and white wines are delicious, particularly the red called Zlatan Plavac. Hvar is also famous for its great fields of wild lavender which scent the whole island and are of amazing purple colour in June and July. Lavender products, such as soap and perfume are available to buy.


Hvar Town and the Pakleni Otoci islands
Hvar Town and the Pakleni Otoci islands

Sporting activities available on the island include windsurfing, water-skiing, scuba-diving, sailing, swimming, fishing, bicycling along wonderful country roads, walking and climbing. Hvar's indebted coastline and deep bays and offshore small islands provide many sheltered harbours and quiet beaches. But more than anything Hvar is notable for it gorgeous and historic harbour towns, the most significant being Hvar Town itself,


Hvar is reached by regulular car ferry service from Split to Stari Grad and from to Drvenik to Sucuraj at the eastern end of the island. Catamaran passenger ferries operate to Hvar Town and Jelsa.


Hvar Town

Hvar is one of the most beautiful and most fashionable towns in Croatia. It is small and relaxing, but it is full of great Italianate medieval architecture, 700 years old city walls, dominated by what is arguably the most beautiful ancient town square in Croatia. Paved with ancient stone slabs the square is and surrounded by renaissance palaces from the 15th and 16th century. Amongst the most beautiful of these is the old 17th century theatre and a Venetian loggia. Narrow streets with old houses and villas radiate away from the town square, and several grand hotels from the bygone age are facing the square. Lively restaurants and bars are another attraction for tourists and many grand yachts jostle for a position in the little harbour lined with palm trees. On top of the hill is an old fortress from which there is a spectacular view of the sea and islands. .Walking along the harbour front to the town square to relax in the cafes, bars and restaurants, enjoying a cappuccino, an ice-cream, a cool beer or a lunch of grilled fresh fish and marvellous olive oils and local wines, whilst the world lazily passes by; these are the simple pleasures of holidaying in Hvar.


Hvar Town
Hvar Town
Enjoying a coffee in Hvar town
Enjoying a coffee in Hvar town
Pakleni Otoci Islands
Pakleni Otoci Islands
Lavender fields on Hvar
Lavender fields on Hvar
Pokrivenik Bay
Pokrivenik Bay

Hvar is unique in that it both relaxing and restful, whilst at the same time having a lively atmosphere. There is history, architecture, superb dining, walks along narrow cobbled streets, all kinds of sports, as well as smart nightclubs, beaches and swimming. It is popular with the sailing community, young adults and family groups, not to mention European royalty and Hollywood celebrities. There is really something for everyone. Many good restaurants and bars are dotted all around the town of Hvar, serving either simple fresh seafood and pasta, or providing a full-on gastronomic experience, such as Macondo restaurant in one of the small Hvar side streets. Seasoned party goers recommend the Carpe Diem nightclub in the harbour, which is furnished with exotic Arabian furniture and dècor and provides cocktails and champagne until small hours of the morning.


More superb restaurants are located on the nearby Pakleni islands, which can be reached reach by taxi boats running from the town quay. Our favourites are Patak (also known as Kod Patka) and Meneghello, the latter in a lush tropical garden and decorated with exotic art work; they are both restaurants which provide great cooking and a magical location.


There are swimming areas and small beaches as you walk along the coast path around the town. Some of the most beautiful beaches are to be found on the Pakleni islands such as Palmizana and Stipanska beaches, reached by taxi boat from Hvar town.


Jelsa harbour
Jelsa harbour

Other towns on the island.

Stari Grad, Jelsa and Vrbovska, on the north side of the island are all delightful harbour towns with the typical stone houses, busy harbours tight with local fishing boats and visiting yachts. Waterside restaurants and cafes surround the harbours and nearby beaches provide excellent swimming. Inland Also smaller villages such as Dol, Zavala and many others. are worth a visit.


Vrboska
Vrboska
Stari Grad
Stari Grad
Jelsa
Jelsa

Split

Split, the main port for travel to the Adriatic islands, is also home to the Diocletian Palace, built by the Roman Emperor Diocletian at the end of the third century AD. The Palace forms the core of the old town and has been adapted and remodelled throughout the ages so that it displays a breath-taking mix of architecture from the Roman through to the later Venetian period.


Split waterfront
Split waterfront

Louise Reddon writing in The Daily Telegraph captured the atmosphere of Split perfectly: When Emperor Diocletian was considering retirement from governing the Roman Empire, he shopped around, found no decent rest homes and decided to build his own. And so Split was born. This magnificent walled city palace was built to Diocletian's exacting standards, and today retains enough original charms to attract visitors by the thousands. Amid the remnants of his grand residences, there is a pleasingly workaday town. Pavement cafès, cosy bars and plenty of shops mix with two lively markets and chic apartments built from the very barracks where Diocletian's soldiers once lived. Visit this 1700-year-old living museum during Split‘s Summer Festival in which cultural events are often staged in the open air. Drinking cocktails with the posing parade along the ritzy palm-lined ‘Riva‘ promenade. Afterwards, head to house-music haunt, Caffe Bar Fluid, and sit outside on steps that lead to the little-known second tier of the palace. Bacvice beach, a 15-minute stroll east, has buzzy nightclubs.




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