Jelsa is a small fishing town around 20km east of Hvar town. With several restaurants, bars and ice-cream cafes it has a charming, family feel. It is a great base to go on and explore from, with day trips to Brac Island and lots of places to hire bikes and scooters.
The catamaran goes once a day from Split to Jelsa via Brac Island and costs no more than a few pounds. Word of warning though: the bus services to and from Jelsa are somewhat limited.
The catamaran from Split to Hvar takes one hour, and the ferry takes just over two.
If you're not pressed for time (they cost the same - 38kuna or £3.50), take the ferry as you can sit on the top deck and sunbathe as you pass by beautiful islands.
from Split harbour, Jandrolinja ferries/catamarans
If you are planning on going to Zavala or Sveti Nedelja beach, don't go by scooter. Nothing can prepare you for the long, dark tunnel you have to pass through to get to them.
Scooters aren't meant to use it, although they didn't tell us this in the rental shop. There are literally no lights, so it is pitch black as the scooter lights are not designed to light up the road but just to be seen.
We had to follow the car in front very closely to see by his tail lights, and the tunnel was damp so we were afraid of slipping. On the way back it was worse as there was a car behind us and we were able to see the road which was not properly surfaced, full of ruts and pot holes, and very narrow. We were both shaking when we finally got to the end!
on way to Zavala beach
If you are planning on staying a little further out of Hvar centre and renting a scooter or car to get into town or see more of the island, be aware that there only seems to be one company that rents them and it's very expensive!
We were shocked to pay £32 a day for a banged-up old scooter which could hardly make it up the hills (we paid £7 a day last year in Greece). Cars were £56 a day.
Having said that, it is worth it for at least a day, to visit some of the beaches, and to take the old road via Brusje on the way home, gorgeous view from top of Hvar looking out towards Brac as the sun sets.
Rent scooters from the bus station at Hvar
Send your feedback or queries to email@example.com