Hvar may not be the sleepy fishing village it once was, but there is plenty on this dreamy Croatian island to keep drawing us back. A recent influx of celebrities and well-heeled visitors has given Hvar the reputation of being the Saint Tropez of the Adriatic, and yes, there are the glitzy yachts and five-star restaurants you’d expect. But this beautiful island has not lost any of its charm, with superyachts and fancy catamarans moored alongside traditional local fishing boats in the harbour, and much of the island still given over to lavender fields, old stone villages and pebbly coves washed by gin-clear waters.
Rather than the champagne-spraying antics of Saint Tropez, the beach vibe here is laid-back and very much aimed at families. There are also various options for activities if you’re visiting Hvar with children, from a stroll around the winding, cobbled streets of Hvar Town to a visit to the beautifully unspoilt Pakleni Islands, or a tour of the fragrant lavender fields.
Why is Hvar perfect for families?
Located just a short crossing from the mainland, the Hvar is a microcosm of everything that makes Croatia one of Europe's most popular destinations. The capital, Hvar Town, is easily walkable, with a medieval fortress overlooking it all from a hilltop. The stiff walk to the top is worthwhile, and doable even for smaller children, offering gorgeous views out over town and the sparkling Adriatic. There is a museum and old prison to see, and lots of old nooks and crannies to explore – although the little ones will be most interested in the ice cream available, best enjoyed while gazing out to sea.
Active families will enjoy the many hikes on offer around Hvar, crossing through differing landscapes but all boasting breathtaking scenery. One of our favourite routes starts at the port of Hvar and loops gently along the rugged coastline for 7km to Milna Beach, a horseshoe of dove-grey pebbles lapped by turquoise water. Dubovica beach, on the south coast, is another dreamy cove, dominated by an old stone villa at one end and home to the Duba Beach Bar, one of the best beach clubs on Hvar.
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Where to stay in Hvar?
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