The fabulous Hvar needs little introduction if you are at all aware of the beautiful Croatian coastline. It is the sunniest island in Europe, so no wonder it attracts thousands of boaters, partygoers, and nature lovers every year. This island’s natural beauty and long and rich history have made it one of the most elite destinations on the whole Mediterranean, and you will often hear of a global celebrity or two staying here. No doubt, this is an absolute must on anyone’s bucket list for Croatia. However, if you’re only spending one day in Hvar, make sure to follow this itinerary to get the best out of your Hvar experience. You’re in for a real treat!
What’s the best time to visit Hvar?
The best time to visit Hvar is from June to August. The tourist season is at its peak, and all the clubs, bars, and attractions are open. Those looking to explore Hvar in a quieter time while still getting the most out of the nightlife should visit Hvar in either May or September. Things start to shut down by the end of October, so only visit Hvar in the winter if you’re looking to spend time in nature and enjoy the quiet island atmosphere. However, most of the restaurants and clubs are closed in the off-season.
Naturally, a place like this has a lot of events you can visit. Things start off with the Festival of St. Prosper, the island’s patron saint, in May, while Hvar Summer Festival last all through the summer, from June to August. The town of Jelsa is famous for its Wine Festival, and there is also one quite unique event for you to enjoy – Puhijada is a festival dedicated to the humble dormouse. Oh, and if at all possible, do not miss the Lavender Festival because the island is famous for this incredible plant.
A few facts about Hvar
– Hvar was put on the market in 1932. There is no information available as to who sold it or who bought it. The only thing certain is that it is no longer for sale.
– Ivan Vucetic, a Hvar native, invented dactylography – a study of fingerprints as an identification method.
– Should you happen to give birth on a Jadrolinija ferry from Split to Hvar (or vice versa), your child will have a free ferry ride for the rest of their life.
– As mentioned before, Hvar has become quite an elite place. The likes of Leonardo DiCaprio, Jay-Z, and Beyonce are just some of the global celebrities who have recently visited the island, so don’t be surprised if you stumble upon one of the stars around here.
One Day in Hvar Itinerary – Top Things to Do in Hvar, Croatia
You are about to visit one of the crown jewels of the Mediterranean – Hvar has it all: rich history, great food, lovely beaches, narrow streets surrounded by old stone houses… Everything you think of when somebody mentions this part of the world can be seen on this island. Therefore, you will need a good itinerary to help you manage your time efficiently – these are the top sights and things to do on your one day in Hvar.
Start Your Day at Pokonji Dol Beach
When you arrive, the first thing you’ll want to do is check in and go to the beach. Fortunately, this is a fairly small place, so there is always a beach nearby. If you want to start your day with a fantastic coffee, try Kava 37 located in the old town. The setting will mesmerize you as soon as you get there!
Once you finish your coffee head down to the Pokonji Dol beach; it’s just a five-minute walk away. You can have breakfast in one of the restaurants or bask in the sun and enjoy the beauty of the Adriatic Sea.
Visit the Pakleni Islands
Once you have cooled down at the beach, walk along the waterfront to the small gas station (near the stadium), where you’ll find the small local boats available for rent. The prices are generally quite fair, so if you have a valid license, you can easily pick one up and have a fantastic day at sea. If you don’t have a license, you can contact the Croatian Ministry of Sea, Transport and Infrastructure to see how to get one. It’s not a difficult process at all!
Alternatively, you can always book a tour or hire someone to transport you. In any case, you should head over to Pakleni Islands. You can’t miss them; they are just across Hvar Town! Explore all the little coves of these beautiful islands or have lunch in one of the beach bars. If you’re on a budget, bring your own food and don’t forget the sunscreen.
Take a Stroll Across the Hvar Square
After a few hours on the boat, head back to Hvar Town and explore the square. The town is quite small, so you can visit most of the attractions within a few hours. Head over to the Cathedral of St. Stephen on the eastern side of the city square and pop into the Hvar Theater – the first civic theatre in Europe!
Hvar’s theatre is open for public use with an added Gallery of Contemporary Art that is open to visitors during the peak tourist season.
If you’re feeling hungry, head over to restaurant Mizarola for some fantastic local food at reasonable prices. Restaurant Gariful, on the other hand, is the most exclusive restaurant around, but Fig Hvar and Dalmatino also deserve to be mentioned as the best lunch options in Hvar.
Enjoy the Views From the Fortress
After a nice lunch and when you refresh yourself a little, head over to Hvar Fortress. Walk from the main square to the north and pass the gates next to the pharmacy, where you’ll find the stairs that’ll take you up to the fortress.
The 15th-century fortress built during the Venetian times towers over the whole town with a fantastic panoramic view of Hvar and Pakleni Islands. Visit the museum located inside the fortress, get some souvenirs, and take some spectacular photos. The climb will definitely be worth it!
Watch the Sunset From Hula Hula Bar
Once you return to the square, you’ll be ready for a drink. The best place to head over to watch the sunset is the Hula Hula Bar. The sunset view is spectacular, and the crowd is lively, perfect for a good day’s buzz.
During the peak season, Hula Hula is the most popular spot to visit. However, if you’re looking for a quieter atmosphere and an equally spectacular view, keep walking to Falko Beach Bar. Both of these places are a great way to get your evening in this wonderful place off to a great start.
Try The Cocktails at Kiva Bar
After a full day in the sun, head over to your accommodation to change and rest up a little. You’ll probably need a nap before heading out again. There are many bars in Hvar Town and plenty of things to do in Hvar at night. Walk around and bar hop or join a pub crawl. One of the most popular places for locals and tourists is the Kiva Bar. Try their 1L cocktail deals and warm up for a night of partying.
Party All Night at Carpe Diem Hvar Beach Bar
By far, the most famous place in Hvar is the Carpe Diem Beach Bar. The club opens around 1 or 2 AM, and the party goes on to the morning hours. You need to go there by boat but don’t worry; the ride is included in the admission price. You’ll find the Carpe Diem boat in Hvar Town downtown, and there is one every 10-15 minutes. Once you reach the club, it’s like Hogwarts. With the light show and music all night long, it’s a perfect way to finish your day in Hvar.
Where to Stay in Hvar, Croatia
Hotels, apartments for rent and hostels here are literally all around you. While that’s fantastic, it can be a little hard to choose the best. Here are a few we tried and loved:
Heritage Hotel Park Hvar
Ulica Sveti Marak 2, 21450 Hvar
Heritage Hotel Park is perfectly located for your one day in Hvar – it is at the spot where the marina meets the plaza. It has a wonderful garden and a bar, but there is also a hot tub and even a nightclub you can enjoy. The rooms are spacious and perfectly clean, and some of them come with a balcony that provides amazing views of the town. So, if you’re a fan of comfort and convenience, Heritage Hotel Park is the best place to stay in Hvar.
Amfora Hvar Grand Beach Resort
Ulica biskupa Jurja Dubokovića 5, 21450 Hvar
The facilities in Amfora Hvar are the selling point of this beach resort. The multi-level pool with a bar, the fantastic sea view, and the luxurious rooms make Amfora the best place to stay in Hvar for those looking for style and luxury. Add to that a few great restaurants, and you get quite a package. The resort is a five-minute walk from all the action, but the soundproof rooms allow for a good night’s sleep, too. On top of that, the beach can be reached in literally two minutes.
Adriana Hvar Spa Hotel
Obala Fabrika 28, 21450 Hvar
Another beautiful hotel in Hvar, Adriana Hvar Spa Hotel has everything you need for total relaxation. It has an incredible view of the town, an incredible spa centre and a wonderful pool. The hotel’s restaurant offers superb dishes and exquisite wines, while the rooms are modern and very comfortable. Simply put, this is one of the best hotels around, and you certainly won’t be sorry if you book a room here. Enjoy!
Marina Vucetica 11, 21450 Hvar
The best hostel on Hvar has to be Hostel Kapa. The place is located close to a beach, has a wonderful garden and even BBQ facilities. Furthermore, you can reach the town centre in less than 15 minutes on foot. Bright and spacious rooms offer a great view and are kept perfectly clean at all times. So, if you’re looking for this type of accommodation on Hvar, Kapa is the place you simply have to book!
Best Day Trips From Hvar, Croatia
Nobody will blame you if you decide to spend more than one day in Hvar – the island is simply that beautiful. However, should you opt to stay longer, be aware that this opens up an opportunity for some spectacular day trips. These combine incredible natural wonders and unique swimming spots with fantastic food and wines and should not be missed. Here are a few trips you will want to consider.
Blue & Green Cave
There are several tours to choose from on the island, and they all pretty much include the same four stops. Green Cave, Stiniva Beach, Blue Cave and Pakleni Islands. Don’t miss this tour if at all possible as it takes to you some of the most impressive places in the world! If you’re lucky, you might even see some dolphins, but even if you don’t, you’ll get to swim in the gorgeous dark blue and emerald green caves.
Secret Island Tour
The Secret Island Tour takes you around the entire island with visits to the local wineries. If you’re a wine enthusiast, this is something you can’t afford to miss because Hvar wines are excellent! You’ll also visit the off-track beaches and other island towns such as Stari Grad and Jelsa. This is a very romantic thing to do in Hvar, perfect for couples looking to enjoy the best the island has to offer.
Hvar has a catamaran heading to Korčula every day, so if you have time, head over to this island, a beautiful historic place that’ll take your breath away. The beautiful dense forests and medieval churches, houses and palaces are great for all lovers of history. You can take a boat to Dubrovnik from Korčula too, so if Dubrovnik is on your itinerary, Korčula is a perfect stop on your way from Hvar.
Extra tips for visiting Hvar:
Rent a boat – enjoy the gorgeous Adriatic sea away from the crowds on a boat. There are plenty of options, and all the local skippers will make sure you have the time of your life.
Rent a scooter – drive around the island and explore the hidden beaches on a scooter; you can spend a whole day driving around in the sun.
Wear sunscreen – Hvar sun is strong, a sunscreen will save you.
Make sure you have everything you need
What to pack for your next trip?
Make your next trip as simple and as enjoyable as possible by packing smart. It’s amazing how much stress top travel items can save you, so choose carefully.
Things like lightweight travel backpacks, for example, are ideal for short trips and allow you to move around with ease, and a passport holder will make sure you keep your documents safe at all times.
Check our travel checklist guide for 2021 to make sure you haven’t missed anything, and travel to your next destination in style and with maximum comfort.
Romi is a llama coach from Split, Croatia. This sounds made up but it’s true. She lived in Toronto, Canada for about ten years, give or take, but she wasn’t working with llamas. She was working in PR, restaurants, daycares, one yoga clothing store. She doesn't know how she got that job as she has never done yoga at that point. She taught English in Colombia and Vietnam. Traveled the world for two years. Then she got into writing. Actually, she was always writing, but then someone paid her to write. Then more people paid because they saw she was making them money. Then it became a thing she does for a living. And here we are now. Specializing in travel, real estate, and digital nomad guides, familiar with SEO, and always ready to learn something new so she can branch out and take over the world.