Why go to Hvar?
Hvar is beautiful, charming and delightfully non-commercial
Area beaches are small and can get crowded quickly
Historical sites and tantalizingly fresh (yet affordable) seafood abound in Hvar, which is easily explored on foot
Hvar Cruise Port Facilities?
Get off your ship's tender and you're right in the thick of it. Turn right for the Franciscan monastery and a pretty cove where families swim; head left for the main harbor and town and St. Stephen's Square.
Good to Know?
Hospitable restaurateurs doling out fruit brandy (rakija). There are many variations, including sljivovica (mades from plums), travarica (herbal) and kruskovac (pear). But they're all strong enough to send you back to your ship cross-eyed. Sip slowly, and enjoy them with water.
Nudist beaches stud the more secluded parts of the Pakleni Islands. They're great if you want an all-over tan, but check before disrobing.
On Foot: Hvar is very easily explored on foot. Head right from the tender drop-off, and just a minute or two away, you'll find a pretty cove where the locals bathe and, just beyond it, the Franciscan Monastery. (See Don't Miss.) Or turn left for the ferry office and ATM, lots of waterfront restaurants and -- about ten minutes' walk away -- a pretty park and, just to the right, St. Stephen's Square.
By Water Taxi: It's easy to book a water taxi to the Pakleni Islands from one of the operators who tout their business along the waterfront. (See Been There, Done That section below.)
By Rental Car: If you have time and want to go further afield, you can rent a Fiat Punto for up to three days for around 550 Kuna (E72). Local agencies include Luka Rent (Riva 24, Hvar, Croatia, Tel +385 21 742 946) and Suncity Rent a car (Vlade Stosica 5 Hvar, Croatia, Tel +385 98 178 9678)
Currency & Best Way to Get Money?
Currency is the Croatian kuna, which replaced the Yugoslav dinar in 1994. For currency-conversion rates, check www.oanda.com or www.xe.com. Most shops accept euros and credit cards.
ATMs abound along the Riva (the street along the waterfront); the first one you'll come across is to the left of the main tender station, next to the Jadrolinija ferry office.
Croatian is the language of Hvar, but on this sophisticated and tourist-friendly island, you'll find most of the residents speak at least a smattering of English.