Exploring every nook and cranny of Hvar island by sea kayak – Part 4
PART 4: From Stari Grad to Jelsa
The last leg of our Croatia kayak tourism adventure started some 10 days after the previous one finished. We’ve stored our kayaks on Stari Grad’s sailing club pier (thank you, guys!), and took a break until the big and alarming weather change passed. Bad weather did not last that long; we needed to find a schedule that works for everyone. With only two days of paddling ahead, we packed lightly; Bruna even ditched her tent and sleeping pad for a hammock. Our kayaks felt featherweight, our bodies well-rested.
PART 3: FROM STARI GRAD TO JELSA
Leg lenght: 52km / 28nmi
Number of bays: 59
A large part of what laid ahead was unknown to us. Only glimpses of Stari Grad’s bay we’ve explored somehow, and the north side of the coast all the way to Pelegrinac bay was almost completely unknown to us from the seaside. Looking at the map and terrain, we were expecting rocky coast in general. Also, a lot of deep, complex bays on the north side.
So, we packed once again and left Stari Grad behind our backs.
Velika Duboka is a part of Stari Grad, a bay with a popular beach and a bunch of hotels in the shade of pine trees. Beach looks well maintained, with showers and concrete sunbathing terraces around.
Paklina is not so far from the civilized Velika Duboka bay, but it feels wilder and ungroomed. There is a small pier, and a rocky beach at the end. Lots of shade around. Looks like you can be hiked to from Velika Duboka.
Brezenica is where things become fully natural. Really nice pebble beach, neatly packed between the rocky slopes, with lots of green around. Accessible via an unpaved road.
Zavala is a deep bay with two beaches; one on each side. There is an unpaved road leading to it, just a couple of summer houses, but it looks like it is a popular place for sailing boats to berth. There looks to be some commercial activity on the coast. By the way, we’ve lost count on how many Zavala bays we’ve seen so far.
Veli Zelenikovac, or the “big green bay” is somebody’s paradise. Well-protected bay hides a single summer house with a plot of land dividing it from the beach.
Mali Zelenikovac or the “small green bay” is just a rocky notch. Nothing going on there.
Dvi Uze is similar to Brezenica; one small beach, shade, nothing else.
Uza is even smaller, but with more shade. Also, nothing around. You could have it for yourself if you are the first one there.
Ahead of us is a big bay named Tiha (or the Silent bay), and it consists of the following 6 bays:
Hobonj is a wide and rocky bay. We haven’t noticed any beach, just a small pier.
Paklina, The second one today, has a beach, and lots of shade. Nice bay. Seems like there are two unpaved roads leading to it and the neighboring Veli Dolac, but we haven’t seen any activity around.
Veli Dolac is a beautiful bay. Although the water was crystal clear everywhere we’ve been so far, it seemed even more here. Just look at it! It has two inlets, one has a narrow beach.
Srednja Lokva has three inlets. Two of them are all-rock notches, and one that has a small beach and some kind of farm divided from the beach with a fence.
Vuča is nothing special, just a rocky beach at the end, and no shade around.
Stupišće is a wide bay with two inlets. One the right has a small beach, one on the left a pier, and a small structure used by the employees for the commercial anchoring service in Tiha bay.
Plivna has a small beach at its end, and a little bit of shade. Feels remote.
Lozna is the first bay facing north. To get to it, we had to navigate around Kabal peak, and a lighthouse bearing the same name. Lozna is a wild bay with a decent size beach at its end, partially rocky. It can be hiked to using unpaved roads and hiking paths. It is a long hike from the closest village of Rudine.
Glavna is a beautiful bay with two inlets. The second one has a beach, lots of shade, and a pier used by the owner of a small cottage hidden in the pine forest. This is where we’ve decided to take a break.
Volin bok has a beach and a stone wall dividing it from the forest. Not bad.
Vlaška is a big bay with 4 rocky inlets. It seems popular with the boat owners, as in one of those inlets there is a pier and a structure that probably is a tavern. We were more interested in the interesting, old stone structure in the neighboring inlet, probably a shed for the fishing tools.
Dobrišova has a nice beach and a lot of shade, and an unpaved road leading directly to it. Maps reveal some kind of a farm above it.
Zvirja is just lovely. Nice little beach, plenty of shade, and the feeling of being in a remote.
Mala Travna is a rocky, inhospitable notch. To a kayaker it offers nothing.
Vela Travna has a nice beach, but tjust next to it is a power grid facility (probably related to underwater power line stretching from the island of Brač), and that is a deal-breaker.
Mala Smočiguzica is one the bays we were looking forward to see with our own eyes, just for the sake of its name. It can be translated to “little wet butt”, and we’ve expected more than just a rocky notch.
Vela Smočiguzica is the “big wet butt” bay, and just like with its smaller butt-sibling, it is a rocky notch with another structure related to the power grid.
Brak or the “marriage” bay continues the row of inhospitable rocky notches.
Bočina looks identical to Brak bay. Totally uninteresting.
Priluka is a kind of a bay that we were looking for. We were kayaking for a long time now, and a place like this came right in time. We loved it! Well protected, deep bay with a nice beach at the end and pretty large flat area in the shade for us to pitch our tents. Above the bay there is a summer house, but it looks like no one was there for quite some time. For us, this bay was a perfect home for the night.
Mali bok is a rocky notch. Not much to see.
Crni bok is as similar to Mali bok as one bay can be.
Nedomisalj consists of five rocky notches, but there is a cliffy part and next to it a small cottage someone accesses with a boat.
Digidaga is a bay with an unusual, untranslatable name. But, the interesting name is all that it has.
Žukova is a large, deep, and diverse bay worth exploring with a kayak. It has 6 or 7 inlets, two of those with a beach. Lots of shade all around. The beauty of the bay lays in the authentic look of the small cottages spread around the coast.
Duboka is a rocky notch with a rocky slope stretching to the sea that people use for sunbathing.
Žoica is similar to Duboka, only smaller in size.
Stiniva is, as the name suggests, quite rocky. It is more interesting than a rocky notch.
Stipanska is similar to Stiniva, with the exception of this interesting stone structure we haven’t figured out what was it used for.
Ključna has a pier in an otherwise rocky environment, and an unpaved road leading to it. Above it, there is some structure we think it could be used to support commercial fishing.
Mala Kopačina is a bay with two summer houses sharing a small in front.
Mandrač is a name locals use to describe a small, well-protected, and there are two of those here. Other than a port, it looks like a harmonious little community. Quite nice.
Borova is bay with
Tatinja is a charming little bay with an interesting rocky environment, with a small port (mandrač) and small boats parked around. Stairs lead from the bay to a couple of summer houses. Looks nice and cozy.
Oskorušica is a big bay with two inlets. A one of those there is a small port (mandrač) while the other one is more residential with man-made sunbathing plateaus and summer houses above. Both inlets are accessible by a car.
Pelegrinac is a huge rocky notch.
Zala luka is a big bay with three inlets, but each one is a big notch in a rocky coast.
Smokova is another huge rocky notch.
Duboka is a rocky notch, but at its end, there is a pretty cute small pebble beach.
Mudri Dolac is a cute little village located in a deep bay facing the east. It doesn’t seem to have a lot of authentic architecture, but it does have a lot of appeals. It looks like a harmonious community of people enjoying their holidays in peace and quiet. There is a well-protected port, and a small beach. We liked it.
Basina is much more developed than Mudri Dolac. The bay of Basina has three inlets, and all along the coast summer houses and sunbathing plateaus are built. Both Basina and Mudri Dolac is easily accessible by car.
Lučina vala is a nice beach in otherwise rocky coast. Nice, but no shade though.
Maslinica is a big and deep bay with interesting rock formations. There are two small beaches, and the bay looks like a popular place if you have a boat.
Palinica has a tiny beach in otherwise all-rock environment. Open bay with not much going on around it.
Lučica Tisno is where thing become more urbanized. This bay is known for its camping spot, namely nudist camp.
Zavala is a little bit further from the camping spot, and it is all rock, with natural plateaus people use for sunbathing. Just a minute of walking is the restaurant, bars and a hotel of Soline, located on the other side of Glavica peninsula.
Balun very similar to Zavala. Lots of people here enjoying a more private day at the beach.
Soline is a popular beach with everything you need for a family day at the beach. There is a hotel, a restaurant, a bar, water park, rent-a-surf and things like that. Nice pebble beach, lots of shade around….
Vrboska is one of the most charming coastal villages on the island! Vrboska is a story on it own, but from a kayaker perspective, the big and narrow bay that leads into a shallow channel, navigating below the old stone bridges….priceless!
Mala Vrboska is a beautiful bay with a narrow beach at its end. Accessible by a car as a road connecting Jelsa to Vrboska passes along.
Vitarnja is a popular beach ten minutes of walking from Jelsa. Bay is beautiful, and there is a beach bar….very nice.
Jelsa is where we’ve started or journey from what seemed like ages ago. A long and fulfilling journey that made us realize how beautiful and diverse this island is, and made us wonder how beautiful and diverse any other island is. It felt good the explore every nook and cranny of Hvar, and we hope you’ve felt good and motivated to try something in your area.
Vese, Bruna, Kristian and Vedran