When planning our holiday to Croatia, there was one place that was constantly recommended. Hvar was said to be one of the favourite Croatian islands for tourists to visit. We were told it was the place to go for beautiful beaches, delicious seafood and wild nightlife. Well, Hvar – you certainly ticked all of these boxes!
Our first evening in Hvar was certainly one to remember. We arrived in the late afternoon with our new Dutch friends who we had met in Bol . As we sat making conversation on the katamaran, I asked one of them where they had booked to stay. We laughed in shock as we realised, out of complete coincidence, that we were staying at the same hostel! What were the chances?! So, after settling into our rooms, we spent the night continuing to get to know eachother. We laughed over dinner and drinks as behind us, the sun set over the sea. Once night had arrived, we made our way to the local bar: Kiva. We shared long island ice teas out of tall straws as we sung along to awful pop songs in a crammed and sweaty bar. It was terrible and amazing all at the same time.
We spent the next day exploring Stari Grad. Five of us crammed into the worlds smallest car. It was an image you’d expect to see in a comical cartoon; heads were tilted sideways to just skim the roof, heavy suitcases squashed our legs and knees were rammed into the seats ahead. All this, while weird (sorry Bob) Dutch rap played over the tinny speakers. We couldn’t stop laughing the entire journey.
20 minutes later we arrived at our destination. Found on the North side of the island, this cute little town is one of the oldest in Croatia. Its streets were quiet; a complete contrast from the tourist town of Hvar. We slowly strolled through the cobblestoned streets. Blue and green wooden shutters splayed open from the stone houses. Washing hung across the streets, pegged to pulley lines. Beautiful purple and orange flowers crawled up the walls. We felt like the only people in town, aside from the cats of course. We didn’t need much time to explore so, after a slow wander, a quick swim and a bite to eat, we said goodbye to our friends and were back on the bus to Hvar.
When planning a visit to Hvar, a hike to the fortress is a must! Truthfully, I didn’t actually enter the historical site. No. I visited the fortress, or should I say the walls of the fortress, for one reason: the view! After a relatively easy walk through narrow, stoned streets, we arrived at the highest point of town. I turned around and there it was. Once again, that amazing blue water! I’m sorry, I know I keep mentioning the water, but its beauty continues to surprise me every single time. A perfect horizontal line formed between the dark of the water and the light of the sky. The Pakleni islands were scattered along the coast. Enclosing the harbour was a sea of terracotta roofed houses: a trademark colour of Croatia. It was a wonderful way of removing ourselves from the hype of town and reminding ourselves of how beautiful this country is.
Speaking of beautiful…let’s talk about the Croatian sunsets. They completely light up the sky. As if it’s on fire! And, if you catch a glimpse from the coast, palm trees will silhouette in the foreground, providing that perfect holiday feeling. But the best sunset of all is that viewed from Hula Hula; a day beach bar that turns into a nightclub once the sun sets. We enjoyed delicious pina coladas and refreshing coronas as we laid on beach beds and watched the sun sink. As it fell into the ocean, the sky turned a beautiful bright orange. We had a moment of thinking how incredibly lucky we were to experience something like this. I mean, here we were on the other side of the world, on an island, happily dancing in the glow of the sunset. How amazing is that?! We celebrated our moment of gratitude with the most incredible seafood tower before joining the dance party and getting sprayed by champagne showers. It was the perfect way to end our time on what’s known as the “party island of Croatia.”
Hvar, you will forever lay in my memory as a place of making new friends, laughing endlessly and dancing all night. Thank you for the incredible memories. Next stop – Dubrovnik!