Saturday, 13 February 2021

Snow on Hvar! And the Truth Behind 'Free Hotel When It Snows' Legend

February 13, 2021 - Snow on Hvar is always a national media event, and so it proves today. But are the hotel stays really for free?

One of the first things I heard when I came to Hvar for the first time was that it had the best climate in Europe. And over the 13 years I lived there full-time, I certainly had no complaints (but then I am a Manchester boy, born in the rain, whose boarding school is in the Guinness Book of Records for most rainy days in one year - 332 days...).

Apparently, the hotels would give you a free hotel room if it snowed, so confident were the hoteliers in the island's unbeatable weather. A great marketing trick, I thought to myself, as snow only falls in winter when there are no tourists. 

Of course, the moment I got off the ferry having driven all my stuff to my new home from Oxfordshire, some funny white stuff started falling from the sky around Stari Grad. I have been blamed for any bad weather on Hvar ever since. 

But nothing was like February 4, 2012 (see lead photo) when we awoke to find Jelsa covered in a blanket of white. We had business in Hvar Town that day. Driving in 4-wheel drive through the snow on the main road was surreal, but not as surreal as watching a snow plough coming in the opposite direction. On Hvar!


People even skied from the top of Hvar to the beach at Dubovica - read the full story

I was amazed. How was it possible, with Dalmatian covered in snow and ice, that someone could spare a snow plough to send to Hvar? Upon investigation, it turned out that the sunshine has its very own snow plough, which is operated by the chap who owns the restaurant in Vrbanj. He must have less work than Santa Claus.


(HVAR Facebook page)

Snow fell once again today, as in much of Dalmatia, a moment which always causes excitement with the local kids, and locals mark the event in their own special ways. 

So are the hotels actually free? It was something I decided to chase up back in 2012 and I asked Suncani Hvar Hotels what the official policy was. The reply was that if it had been snowing for 7 days then guests could get the 8th day free. 

Not quite the same thing. 

Some years later, I chanced upon what appears to be the origins of the claim, in a 1960s video of Dalmatia. Here is what was advertised on Hvar. 


(YouTube screenshot)

1. 50% reduction if it rains more than three hours between 7 am and 5 pm 

2. Free stay for each snowy day

3. Free stay for each foggy day

And a free stay if the temperature drops below a certain temperature (0 degrees). 

I wonder if they are still valid in 2021... 


(A sunny day in Varazdin - Photo by Taliah Bradbury)

Meanwhile, the morning started wonderfully in Varazdin this morning. People thought I was crazy to move from the sunshine island to the cold and forbidding north of Croatia. 

For more news about the island of Hvar, follow the dedicated TCN Hvar section





Saturday, 13 February 2021

Hvar Covered in Snow This Morning Again After Three Years

February 13, 2021 – Have you ever imagined the Croatian island of Hvar covered in snow? It sounds unbelievable for one of the sunniest islands in the Mediterranean, but today it snowed again in Hvar, just like three years ago.

The announced cold front arrived in Croatia, and even in its warmest parts. Even the Croatian island of Hvar was covered in snow this morning.

Three years ago, one of the sunniest islands in the Mediterranean was covered by snow for the first time in 25 years. This morning, the Hvar town people woke up just like in 2018 – seeing their city covered with a thin white blanket.

"It's always nice to see a little bit of winter joy because we don't see it often. We are not used to this, but let it last for a few days. We will endure the cold," said Vedran Dulčić, Hvar native, who sent us a photo from the town of Hvar.


A view from Hvar Fortress (Fortica), an unavoidable place in Hvar, looks like this today. The Hvar port, perfect blue sea, and Pakleni islands in the background, which a beautiful view overlooks during the summer, are now barely even seen.


Facebook Hvar Town

It's also very cold. Hvar residents say that the stormy wind bura started to blow, and they predict (or at least hope) that the snow will not last long. By midday, it already almost melted. However, in 2018, the snow on Hvar stayed for more than a week.

For people who are used to temperatures above 30 degrees Celsius on Hvar, today's only one degree is not pleasant at all, but they try to endure it. Just a few more months and there will be summer, right? Although it is beautiful even in winter conditions, nothing can compare to the beauty that Hvar exudes in summer.


Facebook Secret Hvar travel agency

For the latest travel info, bookmark our main travel info article, which is updated daily.

Read the Croatian Travel Update in your language - now available in 24 languages.

Join the Total Croatia Travel INFO Viber community.

Saturday, 3 February 2018

Skiing on Hvar, and How the Island Looked 6 Years Ago

No snow on Hvar on February 3, 2018, but the situation was very different on Europe's sunniest island six years ago today. 

Thursday, 5 January 2017

Snow Falls on Hvar (OK, Just a Little)