KING AMONG THE DALMATIAN ISLANDS

It is as if the sea and forest ferries gathered their magic dust and sprinkled it all over the island of Hvar to combine all the colours and aromas of Mediterranean, all the culture and history and all the natural and geographical beauties in that one magical place. It is not by chance that Hvar bears the title of king among the Dalmatian islands and is often found on the list of the top ten most beautiful islands of the world! With longitude of 68,2 km and latitude of 10,5 km, its slim line is situated in the heart of the Dalmatian archipelago, among the islands of Šolta, Brač, Vis and Korčula so its position and attractiveness make it an inevitable nautical destination in this part of the Adriatic.

Its touristic popularity lasts more than a century. Because of the climatic benefits and mild winters, the winter medical tourism has been developing on the island since the 19.ct. under the patronage of the Hygienist society (Higijeničarsko društvo). It is one of the oldest societies working on the promotion of tourism on the island. At the beginning of the 20.ct. this society participated in the demolition of the Rector's Palace (Knežev dvor) in the city of Hvar and on that same place they established the hotel Elizabet, todays hotel Palace. Even before the WW I Czech, Austrian and Hungarian nobility considered the island of Hvar to be a fashionable destination, they even nicknamed it "Austrian Madeira", after the famous Portuguese tourist destination in the Atlantic. The island of Hvar is impregnated with ancient patina and the most aromatic subtropical vegetation, its rugged coastline offers intimacy in the shade of pines as well as pleasure of visiting one of the numerous elite bars and clubs where You can enjoy music and wild parties together with visitors from around the world. Hvar - the island with charm that cannot be described!
We are ready to present Hvar to You in accordance with Your individual interests... because Hvar has got a hundred faces and each one of them is equally charming and unique! Whatever You choose to visit on this amazing island there is one thing You must not miss - the selection of the island's celebrated wines! Their tradition of winemaking originated in Ancient Greece and winemakers of Hvar produce more than 50.000 hectolitres of wine per year. Large number of sunny hours per year (around 2730 hours) together with relatively low air humidity and perfect soil make the perfect combination for producing one of the island's characteristic wine sorts. Hvar is known for its red wines so we would like to recommend to You plavac mali, (red wine sort) cultivated on the southern slopes of the island. If white wine is more suitable to Your taste, You should choose bogdanuša (white wine sort) the island's authentic wine sort. As the true wine connoisseur You can experience all this in one of the numerous wineries and taverns on the island.

Carved in history and monuments that frame the everyday life and bathed in throng of people of all nations, ships of all sizes and shapes, the city of Hvar represents the true Mediterranean scene. This scene is dominated by sincerity and warmth together with charming simplicity and authenticity.
Arriving to this city that never sleeps by speed boat, You will feel its welcoming embrace. Hvar is the city that seduces from afar, and if You can avoid being drawn by the mermaids singing from the alluring Paklenjaci (a group of islands near the island of Hvar), You are ready to experience the highlight of touristic delights.
As soon as You step out of the boat You will find Yourself as bees in the trap and best You can do is let go and enjoy the amazing energy, the mix of Renaissance and electronic music equally appealing to both young and old. First of all You can take a walk on the stone square and visit Fortica, the cathedral and Franciscan monastery, You can also visit Hvar theatre, the oldest folk theatre in Europe (established in the year1612.).
At first sight who would say that this old historical city has the young cosmopolitan heart! It is spectacular, wild, provocative and desirable! Hvar is one of the most popular summer destinations where You can enjoy night life or better to say day and night life in the rhythm of music. Dancing to this rhythm will take You to one of the beach clubs such as Carpe Diem, Veneranda, Hula Hula and Kiva bar, famous cult places that give the city of Hvar the new dimension of the 21.ct.

Jelsa is the small fishing town situated in the middle of the Northern coast of the island of Hvar, between two highest points of the island (St. Nikola and Hum). Besides archaeological traces characteristic throughout the island, hospitable Jelsa offers to its visitors long sand beaches and famous gathering places at its little squares typical for the small Mediterranean town, and also it offers night clubs which spice up the offer without altering the town's image. The speciality of Jelsa is taking long walks along its sea shore and its hiking trails framed with pines. These trails can take You to authentic little villages surrounding Jelsa where You can discover beautifully preserved rural architecture interchanging with aromas and colours of lavender, sage, bearberries, rosemary and heather.

Just as You might assume from its name Stari Grad (Old Town) on the island of Hvar is the oldest Croatian town, which by the name Faros was established by Greeks from the island Paros in the year 384. Stari Grad is situated inside a deep bay, which serves as a natural nautical shelter and it holds a middle position on the northern side of the island. The benefits of nature of this area are also carved deep inside the land, inside the pastoral world of Stari Grad Plain which was, in 2008., together with historical core of the town included on the UNESCO World Heritage List because of the original agricultural activity of this plain , mainly centring on grapes and olives, has been maintained since Greek times to the present. The site is also a natural reserve. The landscape features ancient stone walls and trims, or small stone shelters, and bears testimony to the ancient geometrical system of land division used by the ancient Greeks, the chora which has remained virtually intact over 24 centuries.
The long and turbulent history can be seen with each step, which makes this urban embrion of Croatia interesting to visitors who enjoy the rich architectural and cultural heritage of Illyrian, ancient and Early Croatian history.... In the 12th century Stari Grad was the centre of the recently established Diocese of Hvar which after about hundred years was relocated to the city of Hvar. In Stari Grad as well as in the other parts of Dalmatia different invaders took their turn: from Venetians, Habsburgs, Austro Hungarian Monarchy, Kingdom of Yugoslavia and Socialist Republic of Yugoslavia until the independence of Croatia in 1991.
Although Stari Grad offers numerous tourist attractions we would like to suggest to You to visit the renaissance castle Tvrdalj and its fishpond and dove cot. The castle is from the 16th century and it was built by the great Croatian poet Petar Hektorović who, through building this castle achieved his idea of microcosmos - enclosed space inhabited by all God's creatures - fish, birds, plants and humans.
If You would like to taste or even take as a souvenir an original recipe from this magical an special city - You should buy starogrojski paprenjok - a speciality made of honey, cloves, saffron, prosecco, cinnamon and nuts. This recipe was first written down in 1555. by Petar Hektorović in his poem "Ribanje i ribarsko prigovaranje" ("Fishing and Fishermen's Talk").
Those lucky enough to visit Stari Grad on the last weekend in August will have the opportunity to watch the traditional Faros marathon, international championship in long distance swimming which has been organised for more than four decades on the 16 km route in the bay of Stari Grad.