After our previous stint on a boat in Gippsland lakes (see previous blog), we had no expectations whatsoever for the Gulet. Peter didn’t even know what a Gulet was until I showed him the photos. Even then, he was happily ignorant. Unlike the motto “Plan for the worst and hope for the best“, he both plans AND expects the worst.
So, after finishing up at Split and doing some last minute supplies shopping, you could faintly hear the audible sigh of relief when we finally stepped onto our Gulet on the marina. It was brilliant! The rooms were comfy. Showers had cubicles and the toilets were electrically operated! Yes – no manual hand pumping required! Simple but yet essential points of difference. Furthermore for the boys, we had TV and WIFI which is really all they need other than large quantities of food during feeding time. With all that, we were happy.
During that week cruising south from Split to Dubrovnik, not only did we enjoy the Adriatic coast with its many sparkling inlets – to fish, swim and even ride a banana boat (wicked fun), as you would expect, we dropped in on the smattering of islands that hug the coast line along the way.
Some we graced for an evening meal whilst others half a day or more. With so many to visit, it is impossible to do them all in a week. And our skipper Marco always kept his eye on the weather report, ensuring that calm and protected bays were priority over sights. Even then, we were more than happy with where he took us, here are our top three – starting today the island of Hvar
The island of Hvar is certainly not one to lack on superlatives. It is the longest island on the Croatian coastline and also the sunniest. (Allegedly measured at 2,718 hours per year, that’s a lot of days). In fact, Hvar would like to lay claim to being the sunniest spot in all of Europe. Any objections?
As such, it is unsurprisingly the busiest islands with huge numbers of tourists in summer, all wanting to see what the fuss is all about. If its good enough for Beyonce and Jay Z, it is fine with me. (Pointless fact: The celebrity couple’s daughter, Blue Ivy, is an honorary citizen of Hvar). So, with that, Hvar has also the biggest nightlife of all and can easily take the crown of the party island in Croatia.
That probably half explains why Hvar town did not seem so crowded when we arrived in the early afternoon. Everyone was probably still sleeping in from partying hard the night before.
Of course, there are many more things to do in Hvar and we chose the healthy option which was to walk up to the old fortress after strolling around the 700 year old stone town. This was not a hard walk at all and can be done at quite a leisurely pace
It is well worth the effort though as you will be rewarded with some breathtaking views of Hvar with the Pakleni islands in the background.
Our skipper Marco decided against mooring in Hvar and instead picked a secluded cove within the Pakleni islands, called Palmizana. Located on the island of St Clement, it was a great choice as it was nice and quiet with a great restaurant to boot.