The Croatian coastline is truly breathtaking with its countless bays, beaches and secluded coves. The best season for sailing in the Adriatic is early summer with good winds in May and June. There is an excellent resource available from the Ministry of Environmental Protection which gives information from May onwards about many beaches up and down the coast. If you are a motorboat enthusiast then July to August have calmer waters. It is said that when astronauts first looked down on the planet from space the clearest stretch of water was the Adriatic and once you have sailed the crystal clear waters you will agree.
What better base to explore the area than the sweet scented island of Hvar where the lavender and rosemary perfume the air and the crickets call you into the mountains to explore the pine forests.
Hvar is said to be one of the most beautiful islands in the world and we want you to share this with us at The Quaich.
The Quaich is situated in the village of Vrbanj on Hvar Island which is a quiet hamlet at the foot of the mountains some three to four kilometres from the sea. If you are a cycling fan then you will be glad to know that the Faros cycle route goes directly past the end of our road. A packed lunch is all you need for a wonderful day exploring the island and after a day out what better than to cool off with a cold beer and a dip in the Quaich pool. The local buses also pass through the village. We have two bars and a very good restaurant, Konoba Bogo.
The capital of the island is often thought to be reminiscent of the French Riviera, not least because of all the beautiful people who visit this amazing town. Carpe Diem is the place to be seen with its exotic cocktails and reclining couches.
The marina accommodates some of the most fantastic yachts you will ever see and a visit to one of the many quayside bars must not be missed.
Trips to the local Pakleni islands can be booked from the harbour and you can also catch the catamaran to Vis or Split.
In the centre of the town is the main square with its many cafes and shops. At the south western corner is the 17th century Venetian Arsenal with an arched ground floor into which war galleys were once hauled for repair, now sometimes used for art exhibitions. At the opposite end of the square you will find St Stephen’s Cathedral built in the 16th century.
Exploring the old streets and alleys to the north of the square can take a whole day and don’t forget the citadel high above the town.
Once you have explored the sites you will no doubt want to end your day in one of the wonderful restaurants where you can enjoy a varied choice of local Mediterranean dishes.
There is a bus or taxi service to Hvar Town from Jelsa which stops in Vrbanj. With so many things to do in Hvar Town there is something to suit everyone.
The nearest town to Vrbanj, where The Quaich is located, Jelsa has an abundant supply of good restaurants, cafes and bars and even a nightclub. From the picturesque harbour you can catch a ferry to neighbouring islands and also the catamaran to the mainland. Diving is also available - see our link on the activities page.
There are several supermarkets in Jelsa and two petrol stations. There is also medical assistance available.
Enjoy a morning coffee at one of the harbour-side cafes before exploring the old streets of the town.
Vrboska has a very pretty marina and is a short drive along the pine clad waterside from Jelsa. This journey will take you past many beautiful picnic spots beside the water and is an excellent bike ride on lazy summer days.
Water sports and activities can be organised in the town.
Stari Grad, originally known as Faros, is the historical heart of the island, and also the oldest town in Croatia. In 384 BC the Greeks from the island of Pharos in the Agean sea settled in the town and named it Pharos.
Because of its position in the middle of Hvar island, for centuries Stari Grad was a safe harbour for sailors and Stari Grad bay is still regularly visited by most of the sea travellers passing through Dalmatia.
A walk through the town centre with its narrow streets and small squares takes you back in time and there are lots of cafes and restaurants where you can enjoy the fresh summer breeze called the ‘maestral’ and cool off with a glass of cold beer or sample the local wine.
Recently you may have seen an episode of Michael Palin’s New Europe featuring the island of Hvar and in particular Stari Grad. After sampling a feast of home made fare at a local restaurant he found himself ‘dangerously tempted to stay on this island of Paradise’.
If you are getting the ferry from Split it will dock at Stari Grad and this is where we shall come to escort you to the Quaich.
The first ever guide book specifically about Hvar Island is now available – written by Paul Bradbury. Paul is a good friend and has lived in Jelsa since 2003. His knowledge of the island is unrivalled. Hvar: An Insider’s Guide to Croatia’s Premier Island is available on Kindle, iPhone app, PDF download and paperback. You will also find lots of information on Total Hvar, a site created by Paul.