The island of Hvar is more and more called to be the “St. Tropez” of croatia. Luxury, Lifestyle and celebrities are coming here together. Most people are arriving with a lot of cash but leaving the island as poor as a church mouse. So, if it is like that, is it actually worth visiting Hvar? And what do you have to consider once you arrived there?
Tickets, Tickets, Tickets!
Before talking about the actual stay in the city of Hvar I want to tell you about how to get there. If you´re not having the wherewithal money to fly with a helicopter you actually have to take a boat to reach the island. One option (Split-Hvar) is the speedboat (about 40 euros/person) and an other one is the passenger ferry from Jadrolinija (about 5 euros/person). Either way you are going to be in Hvar after about 1 hour. In worst case you can also go with the big ferry which is going to the city of Stari Grad (on Hvar island). But this takes about 3 hours and requires an additional transport from Stari Grad to the city of Hvar. In anyway one thing is very important: get your ticket as soon as possible! Especially in the main season the tickets are quickly sold out! So if you´re not considering to expand your vacation on Hvar you should buy them in time =)
the city of Hvar
Once you managed the first steps you can start enjoying the city…
Along the promenade you will see on the one side the most elegant ships docked on the port of Hvar and on the other side comfortable cafés and restaurants. The path itself is paved with stone slabs and therefore a blessing for trolley bags. Walking along the palm alley you will reach the citys main square after a few minutes.
the main square
If you are going to sit here for a coffee you will be able to see each visitor at least one time. The main square is the crux of the matter. Every way will be crossing this square sooner or later. The best place at the main square is the big terrace which is accessible through stairs (for free). On the top of the main square you will see the cathedrale of Hvar, but maybe even more important: next to it you will find a big supermarket =)
Small backstreets are leading you through the city and hiding one of the most beautiful bars and shops. Stolling around will definately reveal secret places…
A bit further along the coastline you will be seeing typically small market places. Next to the activity of shopping expensive souvenirs you can always go for a drink. Various bars are places next to each other and inviting you to take a seat. In general you can choose between the XXL Pitcher which are most famous from spring break parties or join a classic wine tasting session. So it doesn´t matter what you are looking for, you will find it in Hvar =) Well, besides shopping and drinking you can obviously do more. Going for a swim, for lunch or for a coffee or experiencing the cultural highlights of Hvar are always good alternatives. But one of my “must dos” in Hvar is visiting the roof top terrace of the Adriana Hotel (for free).
the rooftop terrace of adriana hotel
Standing on top of the Adriana Hotel you will be able to watch over the whole city. Don´t miss to bring your camera 😉
the way to hula hula
Walking futher along the coast, passing the small boats and souvenir shops the path will lead you more and more outside the city. After about 10 minutes you´ll be reaching the Amfora Hotel with its beautiful pools as well as the Hula Hula Bar (my fav) after about 15-20 min.
The pools from the hotel amfora
Even though you are not a guest you are still allowed to enter the pool area for a extra charge. Since the beaches in Hvar are mostly small and uncomfortable it is a nice and very comfortable way to enjoy a sunny day. *Cheers* =)
Tip: if you get hungry, you can go to Villa Dinka Restaurant. A little path just a few meters before the amfora hotel will guide you there 😉
Once you are strengthened you can continue your way to Hula Hula to enjoy some Cocktails to good music and an amazing sunset. When it comes to Party at Night Carpe Diem is the Club to be. There you will also be able to see the famous champagne bottles 😉
The Fortress Španjola
Besides partys, clubs and bars you can of course do some sightseeing too. To explore a bit more of Hvars cultural heritage I am visiting the fortress Španjola. My way starts at the main square and leads me up the hill… a lot of stairs.
After accomplishing the stairs, a nice path leads you through the nature.
After about 30 minutes waking uphill you will reach the fortress. Staying here one thing becomes really obvious: even though you just come here to party, don´t dare to miss this view (if you have a hangover you can still go by taxi)! A breathtaking view over the islands, the city and its port makes it to one of my favorite places!
To get back to my actual question: is it worth visiting the city? I would say: YES! Eventhough you should be aware that Hvar is mostly about Partys. If you are considering it just as a sightseeing destination, 2 nights are probably going to be enough. About the luxury and lifestyle in Hvar I have to add that the city looses its glamour every year a bit more. What once used to be a city full of chic high heels and chemises is turning more and more into XXL pitchers and flip-flops. So if you are interested to experience the glamourous Hvar you should hurry up to see it 😉