Croatia - Hvar or Korcula or both?

Old Jan 25th, 2010, 10:46 AM
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Croatia - Hvar or Korcula or both?

My husband and I will be there for 8 days/nights in July. We start with 4 in Dubrovnik (day trips to Mostar and probably Montenegro too). End in Split where we fly out. I've narrowed it down to two options.

Option 1 - ferry Dubrovnik to Korcula Sunday the 18th (10am-13:00). Then catamaran Korcula to Hvar on Monday (6am-7:40), then catamaran Hvar to Split (7:40-8:30) on Tuesday.

Option 2 - ferry on Sunday from Dubrovnik to either Korcula or Hvar and stay two nights, catamaran to Split Tuesday.

There may be more ferry/catamaran options but those were the ones I could find now. Given the times it does work out that we can spend one night on each island. But it also means getting up early two days in a row.

So my questions - how far in advance do you have to get to the dock for those trips? It looks like the trips in Hvar are from Hvar town but I saw something about Stari Grad. That would make it really hard to take an early morning boat to Split (which would mean staying on Hvar at all would not make sense. Seems like that can't be the only option for getting from the island of Hvar to Split. From your experience, does this look like a workable plan if we don't mind getting up in time for those boats?

If we decide to only do one island which one? We are really not into either beach or night life (we sound boring). We are into photography, ambiance, exploring medieval towns, short hikes (usually to get a good view). Thanks
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Old Jan 25th, 2010, 11:52 AM
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I'm sure others will weigh in, but personally I would spend two nights on Hvar and skip Korcula. There is plenty to do in Hvar, including boat trips to the nearby islands (I recommend St. Klement--and don't miss Konoba Dionis for lunch if you go there). It's not that Korcula wouldn't be great, but that Hvar has so much to offer it would be a shame to spend just a day there. Be sure to take the short hike up to the fort on top of the hill for fabulous views.

If you ferry to Hvar from Dubrovnik I believe you will land at Stari Grad--it's a short bus ride to Hvar town from there. The catamarans go directly to Split from Hvar town.

July will probably be busy--I recommend getting your tickets as soon as you get to Dubrovnik.

I loved Croatia!
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Old Jan 25th, 2010, 12:01 PM
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I think it depends on what you want to see and experience.

I spent about a day in Korcula and that amount of time suited me well - plenty of time to roam around and visit the places I wanted to see. While on Hvar, I stayed in Stari Grad and only had a few hours in Hvar Town - barely enough to get a quick look. My impressions were that Hvar Town is much more upscale than Korcula and that there is more to do in Hvar Town. Both have charming medieval districts and a short hike from either allows great views, and I found both charming.

Some ferries from Hvar do, indeed, leave from Stari Grad rather than Hvar. I believe that buses are usually timed to allow people to leave Hvar Town in time to reach the ferry from Stari Grad to Split, but I won't swear to that!

I'm not sure how far in advance you need to get to the dock, but you might be able to purchase a ticket in advance once you reach whichever destination(s) you choose.

Hope that helps!
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Old Jan 25th, 2010, 01:05 PM
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I have the same dilemma. We are also going in the summer, and I have read practically all posts on Hvar and Korcula. In the end, we decided that we will visit both islands. (Actually we do have more time than you do, but I just hate moving around so much, hence my preference to stay put in 1 place for several days). But because Korcula is a bit smaller than Hvar, we will spend a few more days in Hvar than Korcula.
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Old Jan 25th, 2010, 01:47 PM
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Decisions, decisions! If you were not planning on the two day trips, I would say take a day from Dubrovnik. To me, the choice between Hvar and Korcula is a complete toss-up. I loved both, and I think there are many similarities. I would suggest picking one in order to spend 2 nights and have time to explore around either island a bit. In July, Korcula may have an edge in being slightly less busy. Both towns get cruise ships unfortunately.
You can also take a bus to Korcula from Dubrovnik, it may take less time than the ferry (bus is 4 hours), and it leaves in the afternoon (around 3 in years past). Alternatively, there may be a catamaran on that route in summer.
To confound you, I do have to say I would prefer two shorter catamaran rides over the long ferry ride from Dubrovnik to Hvar. In fact, I would go so far as to say I would take a bus to Split instead and take a catamaran to Hvar. (You are correct, car ferries go to Stari Grad, which is about 30 mins by bus from Hvar town). Catamarans are more frequent in summer.
Hope that helps.
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Old Jan 26th, 2010, 07:56 AM
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Thanks for your replies. Yes it is a tough decision. If I have to pick one I guess I'm leaning towards Korcula. We really are not into glitz. But I'd love to see Hvar even if just for a short while. Does anyone know if there are late day catamaran/ferry options to get from Hvar to split. The only one I see (at the moment) on line is the 7:40 one. Also, if there were a later in the day option we could do two nights on Korcula and then just stop for a few hours on Hvar. But is there anywhere near the port to leave luggage?
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Old Jan 26th, 2010, 08:23 AM
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How many days do you have in Split? I am not 100% knowledgeable of the summer schedules, but I think you can easily do a day trip to Hvar from Split.
Or, like you said you can probably stop on the way to Split. I would try to leave luggage at the tourist office. It is not far from the port.
The summer schedules are not posted yet, but keep checking http://www.jadrolinija.hr/default.aspx?lang=2.
There may be some other operators also.
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Old Jan 26th, 2010, 08:40 AM
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Although it is a difficult decision, the good news is that both islands are lovely! If you do go to Korcula, do try to see the moresca. I think it is performed on Monday evenings, but I'm not positive. BTW, I wouldn't call Hvar Town glitzy - just more upscale than Korcula.
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Old Jan 26th, 2010, 02:03 PM
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Thanks for the replies.

yorkshire - we only have two nights in Split. The total in Croatia is 8 nights: 4 Dubrovnik (day trip to Mostar and to Montenegro probably), 2 on islands and 2 in Split/Trogir (haven't decided which to stay in). We fly into DUB and out of SPU. Croatia is part of a three week trip that also includes Amalfi Coast. So obviously not enough time to do a day trip from Split.

The reason I was tempted to do one night each island is that it doesn't involve any additional time in transit. The boat is going to stop in Hvar on the way from Korcula to Split anyway. It is just a question as to whether or not we get off it for a few hours, an overnight or not at all.

Now I am leaning towards two nights on Korcula but being flexible enough to stop in Hvar for a few hours. secrethvar sounds like he knows what he is talking about and says there will be later in the day boats (1:00pm catamaran) to Split so we could have five hours to see the main town. Not enough time of course but then there never is....
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Old Jan 27th, 2010, 07:30 AM
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Don't worry--you can return one day. You will enjoy all of it, not matter how briefly. With the increase in catamaran schedules in the summer, you should be fine.
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Old Feb 2nd, 2010, 01:41 PM
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secrethvar - thank you, that sounds like a good plan. I am pretty sure we will do that. I read that you can leave luggage at the tourist office for a few hours. Do you know if that is true. It would only be two small (20") bags. Or if there is somewhere else to leave them? I will continue to do more research, and check ferry/catamaran schedules later in the spring and let you know if I have more questions. Thanks everyone for your help.
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Old Mar 25th, 2010, 09:34 AM
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is there a 1 pm catamaran from hvar to split during the week?

we need to go to split on a monday in september. I am not seeing any late pm ferries on the ferry website.

thanks!
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Old Mar 25th, 2010, 10:55 AM
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Isabel, I too am torn--we liked both and loved the photo ops at both.
You may have seen this before, but heer are some good shots of both and more of the Dalmatian coast.

http://www.slowphotos.com/photo/show...y.php?cat=3882
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Old Mar 26th, 2010, 09:18 AM
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Thanks bob, nice photos. I just got back from Barcelona (and France) and as soon as I edit those photos I will be back to planning the July trip and those photos will be helpful.
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Old Feb 6th, 2014, 12:16 PM
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I'm going to jump In here and ask what folks think about staying on Hvar as far as is it inconvenient to book an apt in Stari Grad vs Hvar town? They both look like they have a lot to see and its easy to get from one to the other.....
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Old Feb 6th, 2014, 12:34 PM
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I will caution you about assuming that you will be able to get catamaran tickets to/from Hvar.
Tickets from Split to Hvar can only be purchased on the day of travel. Return tickets can be purchased one day in advance at the office dockside in Hvar.
We arrived at the ticket office in Hvar at opening time of 8 am and there was already a line. This was the end of September last year. Summer months will be much worse. Our catamaran over from Split also sold out.

The ferries hold many more people so tickets are easier to acquire. You should have a back-up plan to use the ferry.
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Old Feb 6th, 2014, 12:40 PM
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You can store luggage at LukeRent in Hvar.
Www.lukarent.com (click on internet corner in the top menu)
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Old Feb 8th, 2014, 04:50 PM
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this is a very tight itinerary. I too would mention the ticket situation for the catamarans etc. you should have a plan B...we were there in june and the tickets from Hvar to split were really a scramble...and july is usually worse. both island are worth spending time...hard to pick one.
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Old Mar 6th, 2014, 01:35 PM
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"Croatia - Hvar or Korcula or both?"


Yes!
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Old Mar 10th, 2014, 06:27 AM
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Loved Hvar although 'glitz' wasn't what I found. Would love to try Korcula. Please post back, Brooke (OP didn't eventually post her photos, but that was 4 yrs. ago).
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