Friday, 29 July 2022

Sunčani Hvar Hotels First in Croatia to Join UNESCO Sustainable Travel Pledge!

July 29, 2022 - Sunčani Hvar Hotels are the first group in Croatia to join the UNESCO Sustainable Travel Pledge, or UNESCO's sustainable tourism program.

This program, promoted by UNESCO and Expedia, one of the leading online booking platforms, is the first of its kind created to promote sustainable tourism and heritage conservation on a global scale. Signatories implement sustainable practices in their business and encourage positive change in the travel and tourism industry.

Through this program, all Sunčani Hvar Hotels received the UNESCO "Sustainable Travel Pledge" certificate, which signifies their commitment to achieving international sustainable development goals. The aforementioned includes a whole range of activities such as supporting the local community and suppliers, energy saving through green renewable energy sources and advanced energy efficiency systems, implementing waste separation and disposal systems, implementing digital solutions for improved business processes, and minimizing the use of plastic packaging, to name a few. 


"As a company, we are proud to be the first hotel group in Croatia to join the UNESCO sustainable tourism program. Green entrepreneurship is the future of business and is the key direction of the long-term development strategy of Sunčani Hvar. So this year, we opened an eco-hotel in the town of Hvar, Beach Bay Hvar, designed according to the principles of sustainability, which offers guests a unique, luxurious, and ecologically conscious vacation," said the President of the Management Board, Gordana Tomičić.



Beach Bay Hvar Hotel is the first green hotel in the town of Hvar that strives to be environmentally friendly. It is located in a quiet bay in the center of Hvar town with carefully designed interior details and natural materials. One of the goals during the hotel's renovation was to achieve the hotel's energy independence, which was achieved by installing a solar power plant, the first of its kind on the island of Hvar. Through the efficient use of energy, water, and materials and by providing quality service, Beach Bay Hvar offers its visitors an environmentally conscious vacation based on natural resources.

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Tuesday, 15 March 2022

Jelsa Trail Race to Showcase UNESCO Heritages of Hvar Island

March 15th, 2022 - An exciting event has been announced by the Jelsa Tourist Board: the first trail running race to take place in this part of Hvar island

The recently announced Jelsa Trail is a bit different than your average trail race. Namely, it will retrace the route of the renowned procession Za križen (Behind the cross), which takes place every Maundy Thursday on Hvar island. The race is scheduled for Saturday, April 23rd, ten days after the traditional procession.

And what a setting for a trail race! Hvar island boasts no less than six UNESCO heritages, Za križen being one of them. You’ll get to discover a few more as the immensely scenic trail takes you through olive groves and vineyards, with cerulean waters of the Adriatic as a backdrop. The route runs through the Stari Grad Plain and along numerous dry stone walls, both UNESCO heritages.


Participants can compete in one of three categories, all endearingly named after a few local favourites:

Srdelica (Sardine) - 5 km, +260 m

The shortest and easiest route Srdelica is beginner-friendly and a perfect choice for those who’d prefer to participate in a more casual manner, soaking in the sights while they walk the trail at a comfortable pace. The trail starts and ends on the waterfront in Jelsa, in the meantime offering wonderful views of island scenery, including the splendid view from the ancient tower Tor. There won’t be an aid station on this trail, and the time limit to finish the race is 2 hours.

Škarpina (Scorpionfish) - 11 km, +420m

This route is beginner-friendly, but also suitable for more experienced runners. The trail starts and ends on the waterfront in Jelsa. After the initial ascent and passing by the tower Tor, the trail continues to run through olive groves and vineyards to the picturesque Pitve village, then back to Jelsa. The trail will have one aid station in Pitve (7km mark), with 3 hours allowed to finish the race.

Šanpjer (John Dory) - 20 km, +620m

The longest route requires a higher level of physical fitness, but isn’t technically challenging. Like the other two, the Šanpjer trail starts and ends on the waterfront in Jelsa. After they pass by the ancient tower Tor, runners will head to Pitve and then follow the route of the renowned procession Za križen. The trail runs through gorgeous places in the environs of Jelsa: Pitve, Vrisnik, Svirče, Vrbanj and Vrboska. Two aid stations will be set up on this route, in Pitve (7km mark) and Vrbanj (12km mark). Four hours are allowed to finish this route, with an added time limit halfway through - racers are allowed 2 hrs 15 mins to reach the checkpoint in Vrbanj.


Sweet and salty snacks will be offered at the aid stations, together with fruit, water and juice. After the race, you can look forward to a proper Dalmatian feast in Jelsa, complete with klapa singing.

The winners will be awarded medals in the shape of Hvar lace, another iconic Hvar feature to bear a UNESCO title.

Interested? You can register for the race on - everyone who pays the entry fee before April 14th gets a t-shirt and a glass water bottle for free, both adorned with the Jelsa Trail logo.

Monday, 7 October 2019

1 Hvar Tourist Board, 6 UNESCO Heritages, 1 Location, 1 Night

October 7, 2019 - Hvar's 5 tourist boards will promote the island as one destination. A look at how that might look promoting UNESCO Hvar heritage. 

 It may come as a surprise to some, as it did to me, to find that the island of Hvar has five tourist boards, each tasked with the job of promoting its own part of the island. If you think that is crazy, look at Brac where there are 7 or 8... After long discussions, the 5 Hvar tourist boards have decided to come together and will promote the island as one brand and with one strategy. As I understand it, the tourist board directors will rotate the position of main director each year, and the mayors will also do the same in their capacity of President of the Tourist Board. 

So what kind of projects may the island promote together as one island? There are several that come to mind, including one I came up with for all the UNESCO Hvar heritage. For the 6 UNESCO Hvar heritages the island possesses is more than any other island in the world. We will come to them in a minute. For a visit to Baranja last week showed another obvious and popular activity - wine and walk tourism. 


In Baranja, they have 12 wineries spaced over 12km and there is a map (pic of one of the stations above). They pay an initial fee and get a glass and holder to put around their neck and off they go. In Baranja, they have 12 wineries spaced over 12km and there is a map (pic of one of the stations above). They pay an initial fee and get a glass and holder to put around their neck and off they go.

Plancic in Vrbanj, Pavino in Stari Grad, Zuvela in Ager, Caric and Pinjata in Vrboska, Dubokovic, Tomic, Huljic in Jelsa, Marjan in Pitve, Ahearne in Vrisnik, PZ Svirce. Plenty to see on the way in terms of island sights, and some thought would have to go into the route and whether or not to include all these, but there is the makings of a fun way for tourists to discover the wine island of Hvar.

But the joint project I really like is to bring together the six UNESCO heritages of Hvar at the same time in one location, which can only happen at one very specific time of the year.  

Location, the UNESCO World Heritage Site of the Stari Grad Plain, or Ager (or Hora, depending on your approach to its history). A dinner at Agroturizam Pharos for a group of guests, some paying, some international media, so that they can cover this unique event of the island showing its UNESCO Hvar credentials. 

Tablecloths and napkins made from the agave lace from the Benedictine Nuns in Hvar Town.  

In the very fertile filed where the Ancient Greeks first planted vines and olives 2,400 years ago, a feast for the guests featuring the UNESCO Hvar Mediterranean Diet, one of 9 locations in the Mediterranean which had its diet inscribed as intangible heritage in 2013. 

Music? What other option that the romantic sound of traditional a cappella klapa from southern Dalmatia. 

An evening to be savoured with wondering at the craftmanship in the dry stone walls that are to be found all over this world heritage site

And at a certain time on Maundy Thursday, just before Easter (and the reason this unique event must be time sensitive), the 500-year tradition of Za Krizen, or Behind the Cross. Six simultaneous processions depart at 22:00 from Jelsa, Pitve, Vrisnik, Svirce, Vrbanj and Vrboska, following the same 22km circular route through the night until 07:00. All processions pass through the Stari Grad Plain. A magical evening of culture, heritage, nature and reflection. 

UNESCO Hvar all in one place and one location for one night only. It could be a fantastic story, as well as promoting aspects of Hvar that many tourists miss. 

To learn more about the island of Hvar, check out the Total Croatia Hvar in a Page guide

For a look at all the UNESCO World Heritage Sites and intangible heritages, head on over to the Total Croatia UNESCO guide

Wednesday, 8 June 2016

"Hvar / An UNESCO Island" Tonight in Stari Grad

Today June 8, from 21h-00h at the Stari Grad Museum, “Hvar / An UNESCO Island” will finally be shown back in Stari Grad!

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