Hvar Airport

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With its growing reputation as a luxury island and billed at the new St. Tropez, high end tourists are often looking at flight options into the island of Hvar. And while there is an air strip on the island, for many years, the only real way to arrive was by boat.

2012 and 2013 saw two attempts to set up helicopter transfers between Hvar and other destinations on the Adriatic. Sadly, both failed to get established, although the 2013 Swiss-run project really looked as though it would. 

Jelsa Airport

We have been following and supporting the efforts of the European Coastal Airlines for quite some time now. It should have been 2011 from the airstrip in Stari Grad to Split, however we had to wait 3 more years to finally welcome the first hydroplane in modern European history to land in Jelsa, connecting the island Hvar to Split airport. The 13-minute flight prooved to be an instant hit among tourists and locals, providing a quick transfer option and a unforgetable experience with a great panoramic view of the Adriatic coast and islands.


 (photo @ Romulic&Stojcic)


Shuttle service from Hvar town and Stari Grad to the Jelsa airport is making the seaplane service accesible for the whole island. At the moment (February 2015), seaplanes are connecting Jelsa, Split airport, Pula, Rab and Rijeka (with possible addition of Novalja, Vela Luka and Lastovo). You can find more information and the current timetable here.


(photo @ Romulic&Stojcic)


The Current Airstrip at Stari Grad

As the picture below shows, the current airstrip is little more than a field, with a small hut acting as the ‘terminal.’ The airport is situated just outside Stari Grad, on the way to Jelsa, and is accessed by a rough road. The main user of the airport is the company operating panoramic flights on the island. For information about the panoramic flights, please contact us.

Apart from its official function, the airstrip makes a great venue for children’s parties!


Airport Expansion?

There has been much debate in recent years about the benefits of adding a proper airport to the island, with the arguments of increased benefits of tourism outweighed by concerns that the way of life on Hvar would be changed forever. Rumours of a proposed Russian-Italian consortium reaching agreement to build an airport on the east of the island caused an uproar in 2003, and the likelihood of an airport being built has receded.

Part of the problem is location. Hvar is not a particularly flat island, and there are only really two possible locations for the airport, which both have serious disadvantages. Expanding the current airstrip would be the logical option, but this is not possible as it is close to the Stari Grad Plain, which was became a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2008. The other option on top of the hill to the east, near Zastražišće, is problematic due to windy conditions, as well as being a long way from Hvar Town.

Panoramic Flights and Charters to Split

The panoramic flight option from Stari Grad airport is an excellent way to view this stunning island. Up to four passengers can be accommodated in a Cessna-type C-172 aircraft, with a typical panoramic flight lasting an hour. Planes can also be booked in advance for charter to Split Airport, Dubrovnik and elsewhere in Croatia.


Updated February 2015


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