Home Blog Pre/post season on Hvar

Pre/post season on Hvar

Lot of people, clients, guests, and friends asks me: what happens when the tourism season winds down and what Hvar looks like during the autumn, winter and early spring - which is really like winter here.

Hvar winter momento
Hvar winter memento

What's Hvar like this time of year? Boring – very simple isnt it!? But I and 90% of the people on Hvar like it. Especially those of us that work in hospitality. After all the energy of the summer, it's very easy to jump into a Hvar winter routine.
Don't think that we just go to sleep when the summer rush ends. We don’t - we just take it easy and enjoy the calm days...

Every year it's almost the same. And typical winter for a Hvar native goes like this:

Right after the summer season ends it's olive harvest time. It starts usually at the middle or end of October and lasts almost to mid of December - a lot depends on the number of rainy days (olive picking is on ''pause'' when it rains). Olive harvest time is one of my favourite periods of the year. Families are gathering, spending sunny days in their olive groves joking, singing - simply one giant picnic. Just being together is a blessing that is not so common in these modern times when everybody’s in such a rush.

My daughter Amalija first olive picking
My daughter Amalija's first olive picking


Some people who are not involved in olive picking or finish picking early, use this time of year to travel abroad, to see the wonders of the world, summer loves, friends.

Then comes Christmas and New Year when some of us stay on Hvar and others travel.

After New Year there are two months of true island hibernation, when actually nothing happens. The whole island looks like the time has stopped.

And then from beginning of the March everybody starts to prepare for the season. Cleaning houses, refreshing rooms with new furniture, making repairs to their apartments and rooms that will be rented. Restaurants are also busy, getting ready for Easter, which is when most open for the season. But from mid October till Easter, 90% of them are closed..

If you ask me is it worth it to come to Hvar during the winter period, I say definitely "yes". If you are yearning for a place to re-charge your batteries, enjoy stress-free days without your Blackberry or I Phone and all the other wonders of modern technology, than Hvar is ideal.

There is no rush, people are friendlier and a lot of things are much less expensive. For example: accommodations - just 200 EUR for 7 days in perfect private apartment or 90 EUR per day for the best boutique hotel here!.The same goes for food and wine. So if you are interested in coming before the crowds get here, we are here to help you experience the pure essence of Hvar. This time of year is especially wonderful if you enjoy being spontaneous. Let me give a recent example: on January 16, unexpectedly, I got a request for wine tour. Three lovely and charming girls from the USA. We visited two wineries as usual but instead of the regular wine tasting, which takes around 1h in each winery, we ended up almost for 2h at each winery. And instead of the regular 4 or 5 tastings we ended up with 10 at each because winemakers were there and wanted to us to try a new rose, a new plavac mali and on and on! And then after we finished with the wineries we needed lunch. Since it was beautiful day I knew that some of my friends and neighbours would be out on the open sea, fishing. So I called one of them that has restaurant in this beautiful lagoon and he told me: "sure, come, I’ve just got back with fresh caught cuttlefish- we'll make risotto! And I have dried some eel on the fireplace so I’ll also make you a nice fish stew on the fireplace open fire.

And oh yes, I got a wild onion from Lukovci Island (two beautiful small islands on the open sea) that I can use to prepare the stew with too.

Lukovci - two litle islands named after wild oninon growing there Cuttlefish black risotto
Lukovci - two little islands named after wild onion qrowing there Cuttlefish black risoto

So we came to my friend Stipe's house/restaurant and watched him prepare all these beautiful meals right in front of us on the open fireplace. The guests from the US were so pleased that they already made arrangements to come back in September!

Which reminds me, I forgot to mention how majestic the Hvar landscape is this time of year. The hills, dotted with dry stone piles that look like they are always fighting for their place between Hvar's native, rocky land and its soil. Places from which locals try to wrestle a small piece of dirt to plant something: grape, olive, rosemary, lavender...

Stone_pile_terraces

And how can I forget inland Hvar, so empty, with sleepy villages and few inhabitants that makes an ideal bike trip, hike, car or motorscooter trip . In these villages you will discover the soul of Mediterranean life, its architecture and philosophy and so much more.

Velo Grablje stare kuce (4) Velo Grablje stare kuce (5)
Hvar inland landscape of netted stone pile terraces and villages

Okay, so we still have to put up with bad connections to the mainland, lack of restaurants, museums, shows and other activities once the season ends - but even with these minuses, Hvar is at its prettiest best in winter time. If you don't believe it, contact us and come let us show you the best kept secrets of this amazing island.

Ante Lacman
Managing Director

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