Wine Tasting in a Cave & Other September Hvar Pleasures

Paul Bradbury

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Photo credits - Suncani Hvar Hotels

September 5, 2023 – September, the finest month on Hvar for many – with plenty to do and explore – ever been wine tasting in a cave?

And, just like that, the peak season has passed, the temperatures have dropped, and the pace of life is reverting back to the traditional Dalmatian pomalo.

September on the Adriatic is a fabulous place to be. The crowds have gone back to school, and the locals have a little more time after another busy peak season. The roads are less crowded, and if you are coming to an island like Hvar, there really is no better month in my opinion.

And while people rave about the beaches and wonderful sea, there are also some excellent and quite unique things to do during your visit to Croatia’s premier island.

How about wine tasting in a cave, for example? Hvar has some magical tasting locations, including the Romanesque basement of Tomic in Jelsa, the underwater tasting room at Zlatan Otok, and the candlelit cellar of Dubokovic, but for something quite unusual, take a speedboat tour to the only winery built inside a cave and only accessible by boat (or steep climb, if climbing is your thing). You can see the entrance in the photo above.

It is the brainchild of a Slovakian resident of Hvar for many years, and if you think the cave is a gimmick, just wait until you taste the wines – when I lived there, the Plavac Mali beat all the more established producers in a blind tasting.

Speedboat tours are one way to experience Hvar from the water, but there are plenty of others. Hvar and the Pakleni Islands are among the most popular of all the sailing on the Adriatic, and you can choose your level of luxury and from full and half-day tours. Or if you are feeling truly romantic and want to be blown away, don’t miss the Pakleni Islands sunset tour. Heaven – sailing around the islands some call the Hell Islands (pakao means hell in Croatian).

Feeling a little more adventurous? Kayaking has become hugely popular on the Croatian coast and islands in the last 20 years or so, nowhere more so than on Hvar, which was one of the pioneers in developing kayak tourism. And there is no better way to combine views of Hvar Town and discovering deserted idyllic beaches on the Pakleni Islands than by kayak.

Alternatively, if fishing is your thing, then get ready to pit your skills with the locals. Join local fishermen on their daily trawl of the Adriatic in search of some big game fishing.

For those who prefer a little land-based activity, there is plenty to do, in addition to excellent wine tasting. Arguably the best way to see the island in a day is on the Hvar Offroad Tour, which takes you to a Hvar away from the beach, through picturesque inland villages, to the peak of the island with the most spectacular panoramic views, with a lunch of the famous peka served on the edge of a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Stari Grad Plain.

Hvar is a very active island, increasingly popular with cyclists. Indeed, Bahrain MacLaren, one of the world’s leading cycling teams, had their winter training there 3 years in a row. But you don’t have to be a world champion to cycle the roads of the island, and there are bike tours – both guided and self-guided – available.

But perhaps the best way to explore the magical nature of this truly exceptional island is on foot. Hvar is a hiking paradise. Walk the lesser known shepherd’s paths through some outstanding scenery amid a plethora of aromas – rosemary, sage, and a host of others herbs – and discover the Hvar less travelled.

Alternatively, order yourself a cappuccino and while away the day people watching on the Hvar riva. September on Hvar is that kind of place, something for everyone. Heaven indeed.

For more information on activities, check out the offer from Suncani Hvar Concierge.

(This article was produced in partnership with Suncani Hvar Hotels)


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