Hvar & Korcula

Old Feb 25th, 2021, 11:16 AM
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Hvar & Korcula

We are a couple in our 70s going to Croatia and will spend a few days visiting Hvar & Korcula. We're not really beach people or club types. We love old towns, great views and great food and wines. My question is which island should we use as a base and how many days to visit each one.
Thanks
Pete
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Old Feb 25th, 2021, 11:41 AM
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Of course, longer would be better but I would plan for at least three days on each island. I would spend longer if time permitted. Whether you can day trip from one to the other will depend upon ferry timetables at the time you travel. Also check where the ferry arrives on each island, as both have more than one port. There are local buses on both islands but services aren't always very frequent.

If you enjoy wine I recommend a short tour with Korcula Explorer. We had a great evening with them a couple of years ago and the wine was wonderful. There are also other local tours which may be a great way of seeing more of the area.
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Old Feb 25th, 2021, 11:56 AM
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dreamon, Thank you for the info. If you did have to choose a base, which island would you pick.
PeteB
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Old Feb 25th, 2021, 12:47 PM
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What month will the trip occur? I would avoid Hvar in July/August when it becomes party central. In May, it was perfectly lovely.
Where else are you going? If you are coming from Dubrovnik, Korcula is closer, and from Split, Hvar, but if you are traveling between the two mainland spots, then both are about equally convenient via catamaran.
I think the only realistic to visit one from the other is by a private tour because the catamaran ride is probably not ideally scheduled otherwise.
I usually just say flip a coin because I find them quite comparable--pretty seaside towns (villages may be more precise) on equally pretty islands. Hence the caveats above.

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Old Feb 25th, 2021, 12:52 PM
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Hi Yorkshire,
Thanks for the info. We are planning to be in Croatia sometime next June, We will start in Split, thought we'd visit the islands and finish in Dubrovnik. from there we're flying to Budapest.
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Old Feb 25th, 2021, 01:04 PM
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That makes it tough--the Krilo catamaran route goes to both en route to Dubrovnik. Depending on how many days you have and your tolerance for short stays, you could conceivably do both.
I have a personal soft spot for Korcula based on two visits compared with one to Hvar, but that is no slight against Hvar. I have to say the setting sun shining on Korcula and Sveti Ilija remains one of my most favorite views ever! I'd say the towns are fairly comparable in historical sites. On Korcula, you can visit a pretty little hamlet called Lumbarda surrounded by vineyards, but exploring the island at large is not super convenient without a tour or rental car. You could book a tour and explore the Peljesac peninsula, walls at Ston, etc. On Hvar, you could easily go to Stari Grad by bus (there is a bike path along the coast from there), and there are day boats over to small islands with secluded beaches, and June might be lavender season. I really don't think you'll go wrong with either choice--I'd return to either in a heartbeat. I fact, rather than somewhere new, Croatia is probably the place I long for the most when this pandemic ends!
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Old Feb 25th, 2021, 01:28 PM
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Following along for info on my planning.
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Old Feb 25th, 2021, 01:40 PM
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I agree with Yorkshire, using the Krilo catamaran you can visit both. It is one hour from Split to Hvar, another hour to Korcula. The only negative is shlepping bags. So pack light! You can rent a car for a day on Hvar and see many places, and spend another hanging out in Hvar town just wandering around. The middle of the island is very atmospheric.. google UNESCO Stari Grad plain.

if you really want to choose one base, and assuming Krilo keeps the same schedule, you can stay in Hvar but make a day trip to Korcula. The catamaran leaves Hvar in the morning and goes back in the evening.

if you can spare three days for each island like dreamon suggests.. we can make recommendations to fill three days on each island, no problem.
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Old Feb 25th, 2021, 05:21 PM
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When we visited, we found this website very helpful: Croatia Ferries

We really enjoyed staying on both Korcula (4nights) and Hvar (3nights) so difficult to choose which one we liked the most (we were there in late May). We would have enjoyed staying longer but we had other places to visit as well. If you want to visit one from the other as a day trip, then I'd choose based on the most convenient ferry/catamaran times (and as there seems to be only two a day in June, I'd pack a toothbrush, just in case!).
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Old Feb 25th, 2021, 11:36 PM
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Originally Posted by dreamon View Post
When we visited, we found this website very helpful: Croatia Ferries

We really enjoyed staying on both Korcula (4nights) and Hvar (3nights) so difficult to choose which one we liked the most (we were there in late May). We would have enjoyed staying longer but we had other places to visit as well. If you want to visit one from the other as a day trip, then I'd choose based on the most convenient ferry/catamaran times (and as there seems to be only two a day in June, I'd pack a toothbrush, just in case!).
There are more than two. Maybe use that website for ideas but always check, and buy on the main websites, in this case, Krilo and Jadrolinija. This June, Krilo has three departures a day and Jadrolinija has one. Of course this can all change if people are not coming - they will reduce the number of crossings.
https://www.krilo.hr/en/about-us/
https://www.jadrolinija.hr/en/ferry-croatia

all this talk about catamarans is making me want to get on one!


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Old Feb 27th, 2021, 04:01 AM
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I've visited both islands, two nights on each but they were on different trips. For Hvar we chose to stay in Stari Grad and just do a day trip to Hvar town since we didn't want to deal with party crowds. Even in July, Hvar town was "OK" crowd wise during the day but prices were much higher and the vibe much different in Hvar town from Stari Grad. I'm glad I saw it but glad we stayed in Stari Grad, which actually had quite a cute little old town and nice harbor. Not as picturesque as Hvar town though. I wished we had one more day so we could have visited other villages on the island. The bus ride through the center of the island was lovely, but as stated above, it's not all that frequent so you need to plan a bit. In Korcula we stayed in Korcula town which was really nice. We didn't get to other villages.

The trip we went to Korcula we were doing it en route from Dubrovnik to Split. The ferry (high speed) that goes from Korcula to Split stops in Hvar. It was just once a day, very early in the morning. When it stopped in Hvar the line of people who wanted to get on was very long and they didn't all get on. When we did Hvar we went from Split to Hvar and back again and there seemed to be quite a few trips a day. But they went to Stari Grad, not Hvar town. On that trip I had researched doing other islands, and island hopping and could never figure a way to make the ferry routes work. There seem to be plenty until you actually sit down and try to work out which ones and when. And that was for July when they are in high season mode. Other times of year it is even worse.
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Old Feb 27th, 2021, 11:43 PM
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Isabel, when did you visit? Maybe it was some years ago when only Jadrolinija ran a catamaran (not ferry) from Dubrovnik to Split. Now there are two companies and more lines and voyages. Catamarans always went from Split to Hvar Town but the line to Stari Grad is a car ferry. The good thing about that one is no foot passenger would ever be turned away, they are big. I think it’s easier now because you can buy tickets on the internet. Up until a few years ago you had to buy them day of, in a ticket office which always added a small element of stress.
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Old Feb 28th, 2021, 05:51 AM
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We visited Croatia in September 2019. We stayed 4 nights in Split, and we took the catamaran from Split to Hvar Town for a day trip. We definitely had a lot of voyages to choose from, as rialtogirl mentions. We did not purchase our tickets in advance on the internet because we wanted to make sure the weather was nice when we visited Hvar Town. So we walked over to the catamaran office at the port the day before and purchased our tickets then. It was very easy.

Hvar Town was not party central in September, and I think that would be the case for June as well.
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Old Feb 28th, 2021, 07:17 AM
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Everyone, thank you for all the replies. This gives us a lot to think about and plan ahead. This will be for our 50th wedding anniversary, so I want to do this up right. After we leave Croatia we will go to Budapest and take a river cruise on the Danube for 8 days.
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