10 things to do in Hvar, Croatia

love it!’s ANNABEL STEVENS visits the Croatian island of Hvar to sample the best the island has to offer. Here are her top 10 things to see and do there…

1. TOWN SQUARE The town square truly is the place to sit back and start – or end – the day. You can enjoy a coffee and fresh pastry for as little as £1.50, admire St Stephens Cathedral and watch the world go by.

2. MLINI ISLAND Take a £4 boat ride from the waterfront and in 15 minutes you’ll be in paradise. Mlini is one of the smallest of the Pakleni islands and you’ll find crystal clear waters and clean, quiet beaches. For something livelier try Palmižana Island.

3. LAVENDER FIELDS Croatia is famous for its lavender and you can see violet fields all over Hvar Island. There is a lavender festival each year and stalls selling various souvenirs.

4. MALO GRABLJE Just 7km from Hvar town you can find the ghost-like village of Malo Grablje which was abandoned in the 1960s. The village is not totally deserted, however – the Stori Mlin restaurant is hidden away in the ruins and worth seeking out for some amazing traditional dining.

5. VRBOSKA Vrboska is a small harbour which lies in a bay on the northern coast of the island. Known as Little Venice because of its small bridges and waterways, Vrboska is the smallest town on Hvar. Famous for its beaches, clear air, crystal blue sea and untouched nature.

6. WINERIES Away from the bustle of Hvar Town the island has some beautiful vineyards and wineries with the best of the local wines. Visit award-winning Zlatan Otok, situated on the seafront, for spectacular sea views.

7. FORTRESS FORTICA Fortress Fortica – Hvar Fortress – was built at the beginning of the 16th century during the Venetian rule. It’s only a 10-minute walk (up a number of slopes and stairs!) from the town centre and offers some of the best views of the harbour and beyond.

8. ST NIKOLA The highest point in Hvar is St Nikola, named after the small chapel of St Nicholas which is located on top of the hill (626m). The view from the top is fabulous – you can see Italy on a clear day!

9. CARPE DIEM BEACH As late bars close and music dies down at 2am on the main island, travellers who aren’t yet ready to turn in can take a quick boat over to Carpe Diem Beach, where you’re able to drink and dance until 5am. You can visit in the day for food and cocktails if you don’t quite have the stamina for an all-nighter!

10. SEAFOOD Situated on the picturesque waterfront of Hvar Town, seafood restaurant Gariful offers the very best local cuisine. Try the catch of the day and local wine while the superyachts pass you by.