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I spent 1 month in Croatia working as a bartender on the island of Hvar. Here a quick guide.
Where? Hvar is an island off of Split, Croatia. Split is the second largest city in Croatia after Zagreb and a common airport for travelers looking to get to the islands. Hvar is also the name of a city on the island of Hvar. The other main city on the island of Hvar is Stari Grad, which is a little more humble of a town. Less beautiful, less flashy, more local.
What you will find? You will first see the beautiful archipelago of the Pakleni Islands right in front of Hvar. They are a beautiful collection of islands containing bars/clubs/lounges ranging from the most relaxed to the most flashy (Carpe Diem) you can find in Europe. In the old town, you will find white colored stone buildings, a stone tiled plaza, and an expansive promenade. The promenade extends for miles along the coastline where the crystal blue water laps the rock beaches. As the sun sets the parties start and you will find loud dance music, EDM, tropical house, deep house, and techno dominating the bars.
Where to stay? The White Rabbit is the top hostel. It is where I worked and so I’m a bit biased. But its the best location and has an awesome rooftop bar. A lot of people also rent AirBnb’s or just local apartments if you are in a group.
Where to eat? As a budget backpacker I can’t recommend many spots. But, I can say that Black Pepper is INCREDIBLE.
What to do?
- Visit the Pakleni islands by renting a small boat (500 kuna, around $70) with 6 friends. You can drive yourself and cruise around the islands all day. Outrageous fun.…..and nude beaches everywhere.
- Take a sunset walk to the fortress. 20 minutes uphill and you are rewarding with one of the best views the Mediterranean offers.
- Rent a scooter. Find a friend. Explore the island. $35 for a day, split two ways. You can explore all the secret beaches, visit Stari Grad, visit the winery on the island (not good, lots of fun), and just get out of the bustle of Hvar. Beaches I would recommend is Dubovica and Milna.
- Take a speed boat day tour. You will see these sold all over the place – the price is about $75. Although pricey, this is an amazing day. You see the Blue Cave, green cave, go cliff jumping, go to amazing beaches, and cruise the blue water on a FAST speed boat with about 10-12 other tourists. Drinking is encouraged. BIG TIP: do not go on a wavy day…you WILL get seasick and have a terrible time. Only go on a nice day.
- Party: You can to Hvar, you probably came to party. During the day if you want a chill place with hammocks and lounge chairs go to Falco. If you want a little more rowdiness, go to Hula Hula. Sunset at these are incredible. After that, hit the row of bars on the water (impossible to miss) for dancing, drinking, and clubbing. All the bars close at 2pm, however. At that time you have three options: 1) Carpe Diem, the famous, flashy, overpriced bar ($40 cover) out on the Pakleni Islands. I don’t recommend Carpe Diem. 2) Pink Champagne, the underground club that gives good times, solid music, and blurry nights ($20 cover). 3) Jazz Bar, the tiny local bar that you probably won’t find unless a local shows you.
- Swim: There is nothing better than jumping into the mediterranean. Please be carful of the sea urchins, they are everywhere and extremely painful…trust me.
- Cliff Jump: If you walk toward Hula Hula / Falco Bar for about 45 minutes you will find a 20m cliff jump. Its awesome if you like the thrill.
- Galesnik: I wont say more. Its a local secret and the best thing in Hvar.