Things to Do in Croatia 2018: Top 5 Tours on Hvar

Total Croatia News

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Photos c/o Hvar Tours/Romulic and Stojcic

Summer is coming, and millions of tourists will be searching for things do see and do in Croatia’s tourism hotspots this summer. In a new series on TCN, Things to Do in Croatia, we will be working with local partners to bring you the very latest things to do all over Croatia, starting with the gorgeous island of Hvar – the top 5 tours for 2018, in association with the island’s boutique tour agency, Hvar Tours. 


1. Island of Hvar Full Day Wine Tour

Our glorious full day tour begins in the ‘’heart of Hvar Island’’. We’ll head south, passing through the island’s 1400 meter long stone tunnel to finally reach the island’s most important wine region—the lush vineyards located on the shoreside cliffs. Continuing further to Jelsa we’ll visit one of the most famous Croatian winemakers, the Bastijana Wine cellar.


Winery 1: Bastijana Our tour of the winery includes both their production and cellar storage facilities (loaded with barrique barrels) and an organized wine tasting in 4 courses that will be combined with island finest local appetizers. Our host will be Andro Tomic , one of the most famous wine producers in Croatia. His wines have conquered and dazzled the world many times over and continue to do so. ‘’La Revue du vin de France’’, the respected wine magazine, distinguished his wines as being a benchmark for the future millennium. We invite you to try his Mali Plavac, made from grapes grown on the southern hills. You’ll also enjoy his award-wining port wine, Hektorovich.


Winery 2: Medvid – Dubokovic & 2718 hours of sun in the bottle. Our program continues as we meet the leading Croatian “garage” winemaker to taste wines that have become the most sought after in the country. The reason? You’ll taste what it’s like to try ”2718 hours in the bottle”. The term “garage” winemaker is sarcastically used by big Bordeaux wine producers and vineyard landlords to denigrate young and ambitious ”wine newcomers” without vineyards or with very small land plots. Their feeling is that basing wine production on grapes purchased from other farmers can’t possibly be as good as coming from your own vineyard. Isn’t it wonderful that we have blind taste tests to prove which wine truly deserves to be called great instead of just looking at a famous label? The ultimate truth test isn’t just winning awards, it’s the palate of wine drinkers all over the world. Here in Croatia, Dubokovic wines have become a ”must have” in the finest restaurants, hotels and specialized wine shops. Dubokovic – Medvid wines now have the distinction of being the most expensive regular vintage wines in the country!


After the Dubokovic wine cellar tour and wine tasting we’ll head to an olive grove for a fabulous lunch/dinner (depending on the time of day). This trip ends with an authentic island culinary picnic at the picturesque village of Vrisnik. Your host is one of the best Croatian olive oil producers, Borivoj Bojanic. His grove has an amazing view of Hvar’s 2400 year-old Ager field, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the oldest preserved agriculture plain in the world.. As you savor the subtle flavors of all the local herbs and condiments used in the preparation of your meal and gaze out at Ager field, you will understand the essence of island living among unspoiled nature.


For more information, click here.


2. Wine and Waves – Southern Hvar as Few Experience It

Our speedboat will leave Hvar Town and cruise along the islands on our way to the south shore, passing through the lagoons of Malo Zaraće, Velo Zaraće, Dubovica, Red Rocks and Lučišće. Our destination is Sv. Nedelja and the cellar of Croatia’s famous wine making pioneer, Mr. Zlatan Plenković. On our way to Sv.Nedelja we will stop at one of the lagoons, or beneath the craggy rocks and cliffs for a short 30 min swim break…refreshed after swimming, we will continue to the dock at the Plenkovic Bilo Idro(“White Sail”) restaurant and its undersea wine studio – exhibit hall! There you will be served 4 courses of wine, paired with local delicacies (like amazing marinated prunes, delicious smoked ham, and local cheeses).


Plenkovic wines are renowned not only here in Croatia but throughout Europe. Enjoy Zlatan Pošip, recently awarded the prize as SE Europe’s Best White Wine and other varietals. After our tasting, we will move upstairs to sit outside on the patio to enjoy the gorgeous view of the island’s south hill vineyards. And there’s more! Now it’s time to re-board our speedboat and cruise back to the Paklinski island archipelago. We’ve selected three different stunning bays where you can spend time to swim, sun and picnic; or if you wish, enjoy an optional lunch at one of Croatia’s most amazing sea food “catch of the day” restaurants. When you prefer we’ll come fetch you and your fellow passengers for the quick speedboat trip back to Hvar Town!


2018 will see one additional stop – check out this new and very unique wine location, where some of the island’s best wines await.

For more information, click here.


3. Speedboat Discovery of 6 of Hvar’s Top Beaches

Check in or start for this tour is in the Hvar Tours DMC office located on the main Hvar square OR on the pier in front of the Hotel Amfora.

Boarding on the speedboats we will start our morning part with the southern lagoons and bays of Hvar Island with the following details and itinerary:

10:00 Departure

10:30 Stop 1: Lučišće bay – 30min

Lučišće beach located beneath a huge rocky formation not far from Sveta Nedjelja. Small in size and relatively inaccessible by car, it is ideal for speedboat arrival. It is regarded by some as Hvar’s most beautiful beach, and one with legendary procreative powers. A good way to start the day!


11:30 Stop 2: Dubovica bay – 1:30min

Dubovica bay, one of the most beautiful Croatian beaches at all, and certainly one of the most photographed with its iconic stone house in the water. Here you can enjoy the swimming but also sample a mojito or to at the local beach bar. Here we will give you a nice culinary tip. Right next to the small church on the beach, there is a local tavern, which is owned by the family Lovrincevic, whose owner is a passionate fisherman and every day you can find simple but fresh and tasty meals. Particularly recommended are the small fried fresh cuttlefish and prawns.


13:30 Stop 3: Zaraće lagoon – 30 min

Zaraće is one of the most beautiful wild lagoons on Hvar islands south shore. With its two bizarre rock formations jutting out either side, it has even been used for a film set. Both rock formations have their attractions – Malo Zarace closer to Hvar Town has no restaurant but a church right on the rock above Malo Zarace, while Velo Zarace offers a nice pebble beach and interesting roc formations, as well as restaurants on the beach for a drink.

14:30 Stop 4: Kordovon Beach – 60min

If ever there was a beach for everyone, it is Kordovon. CNN’s top naturist beach in the world in 2011, in Huffington Post’s top 7 secret beaches in Europe, and a fashion shoot location for Vogue Australia, this idyllic beach on Jerolim is a true hidden gem. From the unorthodox art made from driftwood in the numerous pine trees to Hvar’s most unconventional toilet, Kordovon oozes originality, nature and the warmest of welcomes. There is a bar, sunbeds and simple menu.


16:00 Stop 5: Mline Beach – 60min

Next stop is Mline beach, a firm local favorite, and if they locals are heading there with so much choice around, there must be a reason. A family friendly people beach with crystal clear sea, its western orientation guarantees more hours of sun. A great chilling zone, you can find cabanas, sunbeds and a simple restaurant run by the Dujmovic – Tartaja family.


17:00 Stop 6: Palmižana Beach – 1:30min

And why not save the most fascinating for last. Palmizana may look like just another ordinary beach on approach, but included in the offer of its five waterfront restaurants are an art gallery, arboretum, cocktail bar, celebrity hideouts, and THAT 10-course meal that Bono so much enjoyed in the summer of 2016. An excellent beach with plenty of variety to finish.

18:30 return to Hvar

For more information, click here.


4. Pakleni Islands Speedboat Getaway

A day to marvel and one which will undoubtedly be one of the highlights of your Hvar holiday, this private speedboat tour can be tailored to your specific requests and preferences. Those islands might look all the same, but included in the secrets of the Pakleni Islands is CNN’s top naturist beach in the world, an arboretum, art gallery, one of Croatia’s top beach clubs, Roman ruins and mud bath, the lowest vineyard in Croatia, and even an island which a previous mayor pledged to rename Facebook Island if Mark Zuckerberg comes to visit! And bays and coves, lots of hidden coves for you to relax and enjoy.

Swimming, snorkeling, fine dining, lazing on a hidden beach – or a combination of all four – the itinerary of the day is in your hands. All we do is provide you with the best information available and make your magical day happen. We can recommend the best dining on the islands (why not try the 10-course dinner enjoyed by Bono, for example, or the delights of the restaurant which led John Malkovich to call the Pakleni Islands the most relaxing holiday ever?). And that is another thing – you never know who you will bump into… A little more info on the islands and what they offer below.


Please note also that this Pakleni Islands tour can be extended and/or combined with both the south side tour and Vis Island tour.

Palmižana – Vingoradišce Bay
Palmižana is on Sveti Klement, the largest one of Pakleni Islands, situated just south of Hvar town. The story of the place started at the beginning of the 20th century when Hvar’s Eugen Meneghello bought land here and began creating a spectacular botanical garden. Later he began to welcome tourists and visitors to enjoy his private paradise. With a fondness for the palm trees surrounding his villa, Eugen named his creation Villa Palmižana. The property has been beautifully cared for by successive generations of the Meneghello family. Even during the trying years following WW2, the building of Palmizana’s magical garden continued. During the last third of the 20th century, Palmižana gained new fame as an artists retreat for Croatian and foreign artists who were invited to work in this heavenly atelier. Today the third generation of the Meneghello family continues the tradition, hosting guests in Palmižana bungalows as well as serving terrific island cuisine at their restaurants and bars in Vinogradišće Bay. A favourite and discreet haunt of many a celebrity looking to relax away from the glare of the paparazzi. Other restaurants in Palmizana you will like to experience include the quirky Toto’s and their amazing “catch of the day lunch”, the comfy Laganini lounge bar (home to THAT Bono lunch) or for a sophisticated culinary experience, Restaurant Zori.

Mline Bay
Another beautiful bay located just 5 min from Hvar town is Mline, a perfect place for peace and quiet as well as a nearby restaurant to enjoy a tasty seaside lunch.

Carpe Diem’s club beach – also just 5 minutes from Hvar Town, located on Stipanska. This is the 24/7 experience for everyone who likes to hang out, swim, enjoy a cool, sexy lounge atmosphere, with great views, food and amazing cocktails.


St.Klement ­ Vloka
Once a Roman villa, later a village dedicated to St. Clement, today Vloka lures nature lovers and those who want an authentic experience with islanders. While you’re here, try a mud bath in the middle of St.Klement bay ­ legend says that it contains healing essences to nourish both mind and body, and some locals swear by it! Here too you will find the lowest vineyard in all Croatia, just 1 metre above sea level, where Hvar legendary winemaker Andro Tomic produced wine until very recently.

Kordovon – Jerolim
Named by Huffington Post as one of the top secret beaches in Europe, as well as CNN’s top naturist beach in the world, Kordovon is a unique location which caters to all-comers, be they naturists, gay or families, with such a relaxed welcome that the mix works well. There is a bar, simple food, sunbeds and the most original toilet on Hvar, which can be found wandering through the pine trees which are decorated with art made from driftwood.


The closest island to Hvar, Galesnik is an eco-ethnic island which until recently had only one permanent resident, a rakija-swilling donkey called Mercedes. Sadly Mercedes passed away recently, but she enjoyed some of the best views of Hvar, and if you are looking for a romantic dinner looking back at the town, nothing beats the dining experience at the converted arms storage depot.


Marinkovac is home to Carpe Diem Beach on one side, but head to the other for an altogether quieter experience in the delightful bay of Zdrlica, a firm local favourite, which is always a good sign, with two great restaurants.

Vela Grčka
Still looking for options or perhaps a lesser-known beach club option? Head to Vela Grcka, where a restaurant and beach club Mareta await.

For more information, click here.


5.Cooking Class in the Lavender Village of Velo Grablje

We will meet at our agency office on main Hvar square or pick you up at your house, villa or boat and transfer you to our office where you will meet one of the Tudor family member with whom you will continue for a grocery supply on the local fruit and veggie market, butchery, or fish market. Shopping will take place once we have agreed a menu that meets your satisfaction. Over there you will buy groceries and necessary ingredients.


After grocery shopping, we will take you to Velo Grablje, where you will then proceed to one of the “wild gardens” spread around the village to pick some of the necessary stuff to prepare your meal, such as salad, rosemary or basil, young onions etc.. The Tudor family will use this opportunity to show you the village which once thrived on lavender, and is slowly making a comeback. Each house, each stone has a thousand memories, their stories lovingly retold.


After a short walk and picked necessary ingredients you will move to a Tudor’s family house where they will learn you on how to prepare your own meals. Your meal will be prepared in a traditional island way including a couple of traditional cooking tricks which the Tudors will gladly reveal to you.

Your traditional Velo Grablje meal will be accompanied by the finest Hvar wines, and time for more stories, as Hvar has a distinguished 2400-year wine story, and it boasts an array of indigenous varieties, some of which are only grown on Hvar. Just one more arrow in the bow of this truly authentic experience in one of the most stunning settings in Dalmatia imaginable.

For more information, click here.



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