Tuesday, September 30, 2014

9/21/14 Day 248 Hvar Town versus Stari Grad

If we must spend an entire day on this beautiful island, we might as well get ourselves over to Hvar town and do as the tourists do, stand in the way, crowd the beaches, rent anything that goes and eat out every meal. We started out correctly by renting a moped, but we did it sort of wrong because we rented from Stari grad and instantly saved ourselves 100 kuna by not renting from the tourist zone where scooters go for 250 Kunas a day. We then drove the 20 kilometers scenic stretch to the south side of the island where we beached ourselves like whales and soaked up as much sun as we could endure. We met up with Casey and Dan who we had sent off to enjoy Hvar while we stayed in Stari Grad to deal with the car. They recommended their hostel, Dink's Place and Kevin slyly booked one bed for 90 Kunas (the most expense we have paid for accomodation this entire trip) and after that was sorted we went out for a calamari dinner with the boys. We found some decent beers to sip on in the harbor before heading back to our hostel for the night, 2 for the price of one. 

On the other side of the island, Stari Grad is where we spent 3 days waiting for the insensitive mechanic at Auto Rudan. Besides him, everyone we talked to was sincere, and sweet and incredibly hospitable and welcoming during our stay. The local bike and scooter rental shop let us use his tools on two different panicked occasions, anything we needed no problems and he rented us a scooter for 100 less than tourist rates of Hvar town, and even let us keep it for 24 hours instead of the usual shop open-shop close and even at that, the time it was due back was flexible. As for the two caf├ęs we spent an adequate amount of time in both of them made us feel very welcome, Il Teatrino, our favorite wine bar even told us to come back and pay later when we had no small bills to cover our espresso, so much trust and credit, a truly unfamiliar feeling in a would-be touristy resort town. The food was better, and cheaper, and the menus didn't come in the typical 5 language tourist borchures. Not to mention, the beaches are actually nicer in Stari Grad, there are sand beaches where Hvar town is composed of all rocky beaches and half of them are privately owned and inaccessible. 

If we were to go back we would probably just go to a different one of the thousands is islands on offer in Croatia, but if we did for some reason return to Hvar island Stari Grad is definitely on the itinerary, plus it has a great name!

Stari Grad alleys to get lost among

Beautiful little restaurant terrace overlooking the city

Wine at Il Teatrino, cozy harbor front wine bar
Stari Grad harbor

Camping just outside of the city
Awesome bike and scooter rental shop
Poly, sitting and waiting for days on end at Auto Rudan
Our day trip to Hvar Town

Similar adorable cobbled streets, but instead of locals they are crowded with tourists rushing to buy luxury jewelry and clothes and anything that implies Hvar

Hvar beach, note that they are mostly cement walkways

Pomegranates growing everywhere! We do our part by foraging often
The Hvar Helipad
Paklinski islands, the only benefit Hvar holds over Stari Grad, his nearby beautiful island chain
Honeybees up in the nearby hills 
The one thing that. Hvar town has over Stari Grad, the proximity to the Paleniki islands
If you take the old slower and more scenic route back, you come across a huge garbage dump that smells terrible, I bet they left that out of the tourist brochure 

Dinner in Hvar, overpriced but delicious

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