Thursday, July 05, 2012

Croatian Vacation - Hvar Island

The second part of our Croatian Vacation (see part one - Plitvice lakes here) was on the lovely Island of Hvar with our friend Natalija. Ljilja and I were there in 2007 (with Cath Draper from South Africa) and 2010 (with our friend Dragana) and so we told her that we wouldn't come again until she had come to visit us (as she had been promising for so long we had to get her there somehow!). She came in December to Banja Luka, and then kept telling us we needed to come again, so with our rubber arms twisted behind our backs, we came back to Stari Grad. This time with Sina from Finland. Here we are out at the "Stari Mlin" or Old Mill in Stari Grad:
This is Ljilja and Sina in "Sridnja Kola" or middle street - the longest street in the Old Town part (and Stari Grad means "Old Town"):
And on the Trg Skor in Stari Grad: love it!
And then the "riva" or seafront: so pretty:
Besides the beach lounging, which we did a lot of, we also did a bit of touristing around the Island. Here we are in the town of Hvar: St Stephen's square and Cathedral:
On the "riva" with the town in the background:
We went up to the fortress above Hvar (after we discovered you can go by car...):
And the views were SPECTACULAR! With the Pakleni Islands in the backround:
Hvar and the Pakleni Islands:
Going inside the fortress :-)
Ljilja at the fortress - love this pic!
Besides the view, there are other things to experience in the fortress: including the prison: Glad I wasn't a criminal in that era... looks a bit small! 
We also went to Vrboska the one day, it is such a pretty little town:
But mostly we just hung out at the different beaches: even staying to see the sunset the one evening:
And Natalija was a fantastic host. Even taking us to pick lavender on her parent's farm. (they farm lavender, olives, grapes amongst other things). And we took the opportunity to get some lovely pics of us with the lavender:

Her dad was telling us back in the day a litre of lavender oil was so expensive that it was almost the same as an officer's monthly salary. And the bunch I am holding makes about 2,3 teaspoons of the stuff so you can see why. Now no one is willing to pay that much when there is fake scent available, so it is now not really worthwhile making it.

He also told us that he has lived all his life on the Island of Hvar, but lived in 6 different countries... The Kingdom of Yugoslavia, the Banate of Croatia, under the Italians and then the Germans in WWII, then Yugoslavia and finally Croatia! Interesting bit of history for you!

Now it is back to reality...

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