22nd March- Split-Hvar (off bike)
Lauren called last night to tell me she was at the bus station. “So am I”, I said. The bus station is small and I couldn’t see her anywhere…oh no! I’d given her the wrong instructions and she was about 30 minutes away in trogir. She had to wait half hour for a bus to split, and then it dropped her in the middle of nowhere- so we power walked to meet each other and embraced like we’d not seen each other in years.
The next day went a bit smoother as we managed to catch the ferry to Hvar without any glitches. Hvar has the most sunny days in all of Croatia, so it was typical that it was really cloudy and rained on/off all day- Lauren definitely brought the English weather with her.
As most activities don’t kick off until April/May we were limited, especially as sunbathing was out, so instead we booked a 4wd tour around the island. Our guide greeted us at the ferry port and took us to all the best spots, beaches, fishing towns, vineyards and right to the top of the highest peak. He mentioned a LOT of ‘very famous’ things here, it seemed everything he pointed out was ‘famous’- I doubt any of them are as famous as The world famous Bury Market?
We visited an abandoned village too, which was really eerie- the guide explained that the village had fled during the war and never returned. He told us loads of facts about the island and how it came to be and look the way it did, being ruled by Venetians for he most part as well as French and Greeks. I must admit I was a little overloaded on the history lesson, but I could see Lauren had switched off so I had to listen for the both of us in case he tested us!
For lunch we stopped at a local restaurant and had veal and potatoes cooked ‘under an iron bell’- very traditional way of cooking things here. The food was amazing, and the wine that went with it was spot on. At the end of the tour he gave us a little present of lavender and other essential oils that grow on the island, such a nice way to end the tour.
I can see Hvar being a party place in the summer, but out of season it’s really chilled and quiet. This meant a night drinking shots and dancing on the table was out, so instead we took jumping photo shots and treated ourselves to a fancy seafood restaurant and nice wine!