Hvar Island, Croatia: The Perfect Two Day Itinerary

Croatia

For your first day on Hvar Island, check out my previous post where I suggest walking around the town of Stari Grad, including climbing up Glavica Hill to thoroughly explore one of the oldest towns in Europe before relaxing on a beach of your choice (we stayed on a beautiful pebbly pay in walking distance from the centre of town).

On our second day I was still feeling pretty ill and the morning started off pretty miserably as after a full hour’s searching I had to succumb to the defeat of having lost the sunglasses that I’d only bought the day previously. However, I was still positive about the forthcoming day’s adventure and Josh gave me his sunglasses because he’s a sweetie (after a long time pouting and moping about). As soon as we were ready we jumped on the next bus to Dubovica Bay. This is on the bus route to Hvar from Stari Grad so pretty easy to reach. We spotted this beautiful bay on our first bus ride to Stari Grad from Hvar and knew we had to come back and explore.

Dubovica Bay

From the bus stop we had to walk down a rocky trail through the arid bushes down into the bay. The view over the beach was beautiful and I nearly tripped up over rocks multiple times on the way down as I refused to put my camera down for a second. We eventually reached the beach, passing a few beautiful stone seaside houses on the trail down. There was a restaurant with a rustic beach aesthetic; an washed-up wooden boat separated it from the rest of the beach, with a fishing net draped over it and chalkboard offering seafood and other delights. Stone houses with orange tiled roofs nestled into the surrounding hills. Palm trees and olive trees bordered the beach like a lush green frame. The colour of the sea astounded me: it was so vividly green in the shallows and gradually darkened almost imperceptibly as it became deeper but suddenly it was blue, dark blue. I wandered along the silver pebbles a little while, stepping carefully around the beach-dwellers lounging in the sun. On the other side of the small beach tucked away in the back was an adorable beach bar. It was covered over with a roof weaved with bamboo from which little planks hung on string, painted an assortment of dark blue, minty green and pale red. Some were illustrated with adorable drawings of starfish and dolphins. The floor was scattered in colourful beanbags and large cushions where tourists lazed about drinking watermelon martinis. I loved the relaxed, beach vibe of the place. We ordered ourselves a couple of iced coffees and I drunk mine whilst taking photos of every little detail of the beach. Meanwhile, Josh chatted to the owner of the bar, asking about nearby caves that we could explore.

Caves and Coves of Dubovica

Once we’d finished our coffees, we made our way around to where the barman had said the caves could be found, clambering along the rugged coastline. The houses on the hills played jazz from their open windows and we passed by a small child with a tiny fishing rod trying his luck. It only took a few minutes before we came across the caves; they were bright red inside and contrasted beautifully against the vivid turquoise of the sea. Josh changed into his swimming gear and climbed down to explore the caves, where he met a couple of snorkelers who were also attempting to swim into the caves. I, on the other hand, climbed further along the coast and frolicked among the rocks, exploring the little sea pools and their critters. It was a lovely morning exploring Dubovica beach and its wonders. It felt like we’d discovered the tucked away gem of the island, far away from the popular towns of Stari Grad and Hvar. For lunch we sat amongst the rocks on the coast, eating our sandwiches and watching the boats sail past, the sun warming our bare feet.

After a good couple of hours at Dubovica, we climbed back up the slippery hill, through the prickly bushes this time as we were far from the trail. I complained loudly about how this was inappropriate activity for someone as ill as I. On the way up we came across the strange sight of an old rusty microwave settled on a pile of large rocks. On further investigation, we realised that inside the microwave was what looked like a dusty, withering bible… someone’s idea of art, perhaps? As we neared the top of the hill we noticed that the bus was waiting at the stop so we quickened our pace and thankfully caught it.

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Onwards… to Hvar town.

After another super full bus-ride, consisting of me gripping onto the poles to avoid flying headfirst out of the window upon a drastic change in direction, we arrived in the stylish town of Hvar. I found myself gawping at the architecture that surrounded us, it was all a beautiful creamy white colour and looked like marble it was so smooth. The buildings behind the port had large arched windows and stone balconies. The square was surrounded by cute little boutiques and restaurants. Along the port there was line after line of shiny, colourful boats. All I could think whilst walking around was that everything was just so charming. It was busy compared to Dubovica and even Stari Grad but that didn’t take away from how precious it was.

Upwards… to Spanjola Fortress

It didn’t take long for us to want to climb to the highest point of the town, the best way to see any new place. So we began the trek to Spanjola Fortress that overlooks Hvar. The way up took us through some cute narrow alleyways with a pretty steep incline and we passed a couple of fancy restaurants on the way, as well as a cute tabby cat that was relaxing in a doorway but sadly didn’t want to be my friend.

The higher we climbed, the more intriguing the view became, peeking through the cream houses and trees. As we reached the fortress trail, the houses cleared and the view became complete before us. The left side of my view was made up of a patchwork of red roofed houses, close-knit and piled up upon the hill. On the right half was a stretch of deep blue silk embellished with the beautiful jewels of the Pakleni Islands. Tiny, round and fluffy with green trees, the Pakleni islands were amazing to see from this height protruding from the Adriatic sea. I was spellbound by the view. Much to my present self’s irritation I took about 100 pictures of this view from every angle possible as I walked along the trail, Josh storming off ahead as he grew impatient with my lagging behind. The light of the sun as it prepared to set washed over the view like liquid gold. It was perfect. Upon reaching the fortress, we found out that we had to pay to actually enter and walked away pretty quickly. I felt like I’d already seen the best of the views on the way up.

Chasing the Perfect Sunset

Instead we headed out on the main road towards what was marked on our maps.me app as the ‘best sunset spot’ by another user. It was pinned on a little crag off the edge of the island and we skipped along the road at a fast pace in order to get there before the sunset. It was hard to navigate how to get to the coast from the main road, as although we seemed to be but metres away, there were private residential areas in the way. After a long time wandering back and forth, we made our way down a little alleyway and reached the sea. We were soon met another disappointment, however as our ‘best sunset spot’ had been seemingly taken over by what seemed like an organised gathering. Repetitive EDM music pumped out of speakers and hordes of teenagers jumped up and down on the pier. We raved about how it was a shame that such a beautiful natural spot had been taken over by a throng of drunkards, feeling mildly like a pair of grandparents in our spite. We wandered along the beach, away from the music and it didn’t take us long to find an even better spot, round the curve of the coastline among the rocks, quiet and alone.

This was where we were when what I call ‘the most perfect sunset in the world’ occurred. The atmosphere became drenched all at once by a vivid, glowing orange; the sun’s rays distinctly stretching out from the horizon’s edge like fingers stroking the sky. The sun slowly slipped behind the horizon and we said goodbye to its warmth for another dark night after the most perfect day.

Our couple of days in Hvar was like an island dream.

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29 Comments

  • Reply
    TheOneThatTravels
    November 23, 2016 at 8:43 am

    Omg so many beautiful places…
    Croatia is so dreamy….
    I can tell you had a blast
    xx
    https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC_zn7IqrAY1I44bRuN6dH-Q

  • Reply
    Stéphanie Langlet
    November 28, 2016 at 6:52 pm

    Croatia is a country I’d like to visit since a long time. So many beautiful natural and historic places to see…

  • Reply
    Pinay Flying High
    November 29, 2016 at 9:38 pm

    I laughed out loud on the microwave with a bible. That’s possibly the most random thing I’ve ever seen. I want to meet the person who put that there. :p

  • Reply
    Diana Chen
    November 30, 2016 at 1:14 am

    Hvar looks beautiful and full of character (microwave in the cliffs – haha)! That’s great that you guys were able to chat with the guy at the bar for recommendations on the caves. I love getting advice from locals when I travel. Looks like a great time!

  • Reply
    Delaine
    November 30, 2016 at 10:02 am

    That microwave in the middle of nowhere is hilarious! Looks like someone got it out for a grill and forgot to take it home. We barely had 2 hours in Hvar so I couldn’t do much except for the centre. I would have loved to visit Dubovica Bay.

  • Reply
    valisesetgourmandises
    November 30, 2016 at 11:08 am

    Ah Hvar, take me back! We stayed so long a the fortress, the views are simply breathtaking. I’m happy we didn’t encounter any word microwave during are stay though!! haha

  • Reply
    Samarpita Sharma (@BookLuster)
    November 30, 2016 at 4:41 pm

    Hahah, funny!
    And what a beautiful, bright blog this is. Loved the photographs you’ve clicked.

    xoxo

    http://www.wideeyedwanderer.in

  • Reply
    ilive4travel
    November 30, 2016 at 5:37 pm

    Hvar looks like such a beautiful island. I never made it there when I was in Croatia, but it’s on my list for next time. The pakleni islands look so beautiful, I would love to do the hike to get that view 🙂

  • Reply
    Ivy
    November 30, 2016 at 7:19 pm

    Oh I loved this! We’ll be in Hvar for 2 nights next spring since we missed the islands the last time we were in Croatia. Can’t wait to catch the epic sunsets with some vino 🙂

  • Reply
    CreativeTravelGuide (@CTGTravelGuide)
    November 30, 2016 at 10:56 pm

    Wow Croatia looks absolutely stunning! This itinerary sounds perfect for a visit – its added to my bucket list!

  • Reply
    Roger Wellington (www.wetnoseescapades.com)
    November 30, 2016 at 11:25 pm

    I would love to visit Croatia some day. It looks soooo amazing. It looks like you had a wonderful time. Thanks for sharing.

  • Reply
    businesstravelerswife
    December 1, 2016 at 3:21 am

    I love the way you retold your story. Lovely photos too! I hope I can visit Hvar island someday. 🙂

  • Reply
    Davide uTravelShare.com
    December 1, 2016 at 8:44 pm

    I have told me many wonderful things about Croatia but I have never heard Hvar Island, great post and really important and helpful for everyone that want to visit this place! keep writing, 😀

  • Reply
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    December 2, 2016 at 7:39 pm

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  • Reply
    asoulwindow
    December 3, 2016 at 10:41 am

    Great. I was just curious about Croatia a few days ago. My research led me to discovering this blog. Must day I live the way you wrote an easy itinerary and must dos. I hope to make it there soon.

  • Reply
    yhpchung
    December 3, 2016 at 2:56 pm

    Hvar Island looks really beautiful and the sea look crystal clear! I never hard of this place before,and I’d love to go there at some point 🙂

  • Reply
    Anastasia
    December 4, 2016 at 12:47 pm

    There is so much summer in this post, I absolutely love it 🙂 I’ve never been to the islands in Croatia, but they seem so beautiful and paradise-like! Was it very crowded during the season?

  • Reply
    televisionofnomads
    December 4, 2016 at 3:00 pm

    Can’t say enough about the microwave. It just screams photo op! And so does every other place you took pictures of on your trip there. Your photos are amazing! The colors are all so vibrant, just like you described in the blog. I too had never heard of this island before, but I’d love to visit there as well!

  • Reply
    Joanna
    December 5, 2016 at 5:19 pm

    Croatia is such an amazing country with so many beautiful beaches, islands and coastal town to visit. That sunset you’ve seen it was truly magical. You should have taken a swim in the sea at sunset, it’s such an amazing feeling.

  • Reply
    travelingmin
    December 5, 2016 at 6:03 pm

    I love your post! It was full of inspiring and amazing photos! I also admire your fighting spirit despite being ill, you were still able to enjoy this trip! ?

  • Reply
    Adam, Bite of Iceland
    December 5, 2016 at 6:09 pm

    Such a lovely, inspiring inspiring post 🙂 Great pictures! Sounds like a Mediterranean dream, I wanna be there now!

  • Reply
    awaradiaries1mpara
    December 5, 2016 at 7:08 pm

    We were in Croatia this September and last minute change in itinerary ensured we missed our li’l trip to Hvar! Looking at your post I am sure we’ve missed a lot. Definitely going back!

    Parampara-Parichay
    http://awaradiaries.com
    India

  • Reply
    Wanderlust Vegans
    December 5, 2016 at 8:19 pm

    It’s cool you can use apps to find the best spots to see. Too bad it was crowded when you went there but at least you found a better replacement chill spot. The pictures of the sunset are lovely.

  • Reply
    nadine cathleen (@karateandcaviar)
    December 6, 2016 at 12:19 am

    I loved Hvar when I was there a few years ago. It was like a mini Ibiza with lots of great restaurants and clubs and incredibly beautiful water and beaches. Would love to go back! X

  • Reply
    Stefano Mura
    December 6, 2016 at 3:06 pm

    What a nice place 🙂 actually I’ve never heard about Hvar Island, but it doesn’t look so different from my Island (Sardinia in Italy), even mine is much bigger. Anywa, I Love the pictures you used for describe your experience, and also the theme you’re using for you Blog, very nice 🙂

  • Reply
    travellingslacker
    December 6, 2016 at 7:50 pm

    The blue of the sea is the bluest I have seen in a while. The sheer colours here are so overpowerng that I feel an irresistible urge to pack my bags and rush to this place. Of course I cannot practially do it just now but surely I will someday.

  • Reply
    Indrani
    December 7, 2016 at 2:30 am

    Hvar island – truly a mesmerizing little island of Croatia. Islands do give wonderful opportunity for photography, you got some fantastic sunset pictures. This is the first time Iam reading about this island, otherwise it has been posts on mainland of Croatia always.

  • Reply
    Jesper, The Biveros Effect
    December 7, 2016 at 1:27 pm

    Reading stories and seeing photos from places in warmer countries really makes me want to plan my next trip. This time of the year when the cold has hit us up here in Northern Europe the need to travel increases. Croatia have actually been on our mind for quite some time now. 🙂

  • Reply
    OurSweetAdventures
    December 13, 2016 at 12:00 am

    We agree that the best way to see a town is from the highest point. We make it point to always try and see the places we visit from a high point, no matter how many stairs we have to climb. Your views definitely were not disappointing. And that sunset….wow!!! We love sunsets and this one is surely beautiful. Very nice post 🙂

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