The Island of Hvar off the coast of Croatia has been consistently ranked as one of the most beautiful islands in the world. 😍
This island oozes glitz and glam, with celebrities and the wealthy elite flocking here to lounge in posh resorts, flaunt their luxury yachts, and party ’til the break of dawn. 💸
These spectacular day beds reminded me of being a Greek goddess.🔱🏺
If you’re not eating grapes this way, you’re clearly not doing life right.😂🍇
And although I didn’t spot any celebrities at night, I did marvel at the port full of mega yachts along the promenade, and kept my eye out for Tom Cruise, who supposedly frequents the island during the summer. 🤩
Hvar Island’s high-class ambiance is only amplified by its historic surroundings. Hvar town, the main hub of Hvar, is a long-lasting 13th century gem full of historic Roman and Gothic architecture. 💙
I actually read that if it ever snows on Hvar, the local tourism board will give all its visitors accommodation free of charge! 😮 ❄️
Now, for the best view of Hvar town, I’d suggest heading to the top of the striking Spanish fortress.
I guess others needed a little hooch to enjoy the view. 🍶 Party on, Wayne! 😂
Now, what I enjoyed most about Hvar was its tasteful tourism. Yeah, you can visit, but you have to play by their rules.
Unlike some party tourist destinations where the overall atmosphere can get quite tacky, Hvar has strict rules about your behavior and dress in public. This keeps things classy and civilized. 👌
And although there is a crazy nightclub called Carpe Diem that is associated with Hvar, it’s actually self-contained on a separate island. Wild party-goers usually take a free boat ride from the port of Hvar if they want to rage until the wee hours. In fact, one of our favorite activities at night was just sitting out at the chic BB Club, having a few drinks in their comfy lounge chairs, and watching the hilarious tipsy tourists walk along the promenade and make their way onto the boats to the nightclub. People watching at its finest! 🍸🎵
Hidden Gems on Hvar
As for our favorite spots on the island, we definitely found a few hidden gems.
For starters, our overall favorite hangout spot was Falko Beach Bar. They had reasonably priced drinks, delicious food, and a very chill atmosphere with hammocks, couches, and a sea view.
It was the perfect atmosphere for lounging and playing cards, plus they had a small sandy beach not too far from the restaurant.🃏
For serious coffee lovers, I’d recommend Kava. My friend was addicted to their oat milk cappuccinos and I loved their cozy dog-friendly seating with interesting coffee-table books.
For rock-bottom prices, we loved Da Vinci. They had coffee, house wine and beers for 2-3 bucks. Quite a steal considering some places charge 10-20 bucks for a cocktail. They also had super sea views, which is the perfect atmosphere for a daytime coffee or happy hour drink! 💰
The final hidden gem was Alviz restaurant, which had insanely speedy service and a delicious selection of local Mediterranean dishes at fair prices.🤤
To save money, we also shopped at Konzum grocery store. We could make a delicious Spanish tortilla or a local Ajvar pasta with wine for about 5 USD per person.
Ajvar is a popular Balkan sauce made from red peppers and eggplant. It is served as a dip with bread or on pasta.
Activities on Hvar
Options for activities include kayaking and windsurfing, or taking a speedboat tour to the nearby Pakleni Islands. ⛵
Side note: Although Hvar is one of the most popular islands, Croatia has over 1,200 islands in total!
Hvar Island is also quite large and full of quaint local towns, including Stari Grad, one of the oldest towns in Europe with the most UNESCO World Heritage Sites for an island town.
There are also caves, hidden beaches, and wild lavender fields that flourish during the summer. You can even find fragrant lavender satchels in most of the gift shops. 💜
While we enjoy all these activities, one of our favorite budget-friendly activities was just heading to the sea. There’s a path stretching along the coastline and at the edge of the rocks there are convenient ladders to enter the water. You can really pick any spot on the rocks to layout and jump in when you need to refresh.👙
Here’s where I attempted a DIY underwater model photo shoot. 😂 📷
I guess I won’t quit my day job. 🙈
Where to Stay:
There are quite a few fancy resorts on the island, but what seems more prevalent is Airbnb.
We really enjoyed seeing this side of the island, as it helped us realize that Hvar isn’t just a tourist town, but a place where local Croatians live as well. Aside from tourism, there is a strong community of fishermen here. 🎣
The Airbnb host actually rents through the tourist agency, Fontana, which we highly recommend. They offered us discounts on tours and even let my friend use their grandma’s house for a Skype business conference. So sweet!
The journey from Split to Hvar is about one hour on the ferry. Tickets are easily bought on the day for about 15 USD each way.
Apparently though, if you give birth to a child during your ferry ride, your baby will have free rides to Hvar for the rest of his/her life. 🤔 🍼