An Island called Hvar

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June, 2005

There are some places in this world that you could easily see yourself never leaving.  Places where time stands still and the cares of the world simply melt away. Hvar is one of those places.

A tiny island set in the heart of the Dalmatian Coast, while pulling into the Hvar harbor on the Jadrolinja ferry from Split, I instantly knew I was going to like this place. As is customary in many Croatian towns, old women greeted the ferry with handmade signs advertising sobe, or rooms for rent in Hvar Croatiatheir hillside establishments. With no formal hostel in place at the time, these sobe are a practical, as well as affordable alternative to simple accommodation.

After acquiring a room from an elderly woman and following her up at least 100 stairs to her house overlooking the harbor, I dropped my meager belongings and headed out to enjoy a few daytime drinks on the amin promenade. At the time, I remember I was actually brainstorming plans for a big party I had to thrown in Los Angeles that upcoming September. Always thinking I tell you.

When in the town of Hvar, there are really only three things to do if you are going to stay in town: hang out on the beaches in front of the hotels, visit Hvar castle, or hit the bars on the small but very happening main street of town. I definitely did all three, and in exactly that order. After enjoying the still crisp Adriatic water (water temps in this area fluctuate from 58 degrees F in February to 75 degrees F in August), I ascended Hvar castle for a view down onto the port town and the smaller islands beyond.

It was on Hvar castle that I ran in to Devin and Andrea, a really nice young Canadian couple from Calgary that I had previously met at a train station Harbor in Hvar Croatiaoutside of Lake Bled, Slovenia. Laughing over the chance encounter, the three of us made our way back to their sobe, complete with a full kitchen, and made a proper home cooked meal with a few too many bottles of wine.  Next thing you knew we were at the bars downtown, drinking with a group of local Croatian girls on a graduation holiday, and I woke up on a boat with a family from Norway in the harbor, decidedly unsure as to how I had gotten there. Guess I didn’t need to pay for that sobe after all…

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