On the northern coast of Hvar Island, Vrboska is one of the island's most charming villages. It looks like no other village with a cluster of typically Dalmatian houses along an inlet traversed by a multi-arched stone bridge. Near the bridge is a tiny green reef, the very picture of tranquility. It's like a little corner of Venice.
The town and harbour is at the base of a deep cove carpeted with pine forests, olive trees and vineyards; at one end of the cove is an ACI Marina. A network of paths lead from the town center down to a naturist beach and campsite. Vrboska is right on the edge of Stari Grad Plain, a World Heritage Site, and makes an excellent base to visit the site.
The village dates from the 15th century and originally served as the harbour for the nearby settlement of Vrbanja. The oldest town houses date from the 15th century while development of the harbour began in 1485 with the house of local shipowner Matija Ivanic who kept a ship in Vrboska.
The town contains several worthwhile sites:
A Fishing Museum recalls the town's history of fishing (open daily 10.30am-12.30pm & 6.30-9.30pm)
Church of Sv Marija is an interesting example of a fortified church. In the late 16th century when the Turks were attacking the coast, the townspeople rebuilt the existing 15th-century church into a real fortress, the only one in Dalmatia. You can climb onto the terrace for a great view. (Open daily 10.30am-noon & 7.30-9.30pm)
Church of St Lovre (Saint Lawrence) features a beautiful polyptych by Veronese (1538-1588) that depicts the figures of St Lawrence with the Madonna, St John the Baptist and St Nicholas. Also noteworthy are the ceiling paintings of the Madonna by Leandro Bassano, three works from the Dubrovnik painter Celestin Medovic (1969-1921 and several votive offerings from 19th-century sea captains. (Open daily 10am-noon & 7.30-9pm)
Three-star Hotels in Vrboska
There are no ferries to Vrboska but the town is only 7km from Stari Grad which receives most of the ferries to Hvar Island. Buses to Vrboska meet many ferries in summer and some ferries the rest of the year. There are also several daily buses to Hvar Town, Jelsa and Sucuraj. See more on getting to Hvar Island and getting around Hvar Island.
The tourist office (tel 021-774 137) is right in the centre of town and helps to find private accommodation.
All about Hvar in Croatia Traveller's Dalmatia: Split to Dubovnik 2017
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