Life on Europe's Number 1 Island with All Bars, Restaurants Closed (VIDEO)

By 20 March 2020

March 20, 2020 - So how does the Hvar lockdown look like? A wander around Jelsa the day after much of Croatia closed down. 

It is just over 5 months since Hvar was voted the best island in Europe (it is!) by readers of Conde Nast in the prestigious Conde Nast Traveler Readers Choice Awards, the latest international endorsement of Croatia's premier island. 

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FIve months later, as Hvar and the rest of Croatia should be gearing up to another bumper tourist season, the country, like most of the rest of Europe, finds itself battling the coronavirus, with strict measures enforced to prevent its spread. 


From the TCN terrace, life looks perfect. And from the TCN terrace, life really IS perfect. Rather than lose too much sleep over the lost tourist bookings of our holiday rental, we decided to relocate and self-isolate there. That endless sunshine and gorgeous terrace never fail to lift the mood. 

But look a little further than the terrace, and life has changed drastically since the introduction of the new measures, as well as the growing awareness of the crisis. 

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Island intellectual life has been suspended, with the collection wisdom of the wise old men of The Bench - whose knowledge has suggestions that there were the original prototype for Google - are nowhere to be seen.  

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With so few people around, social distancing is not that difficult, and the further one gets from people, the closer one gets to nature.  

It will be swimming season very soon, and the gorgeous Adriatic will still be there for you when all this is over.  

As will the bars, cafes and restaurants of Jelsa. There is no denying that tourism is taking a hammering, and those in Croatia's tourism industry are suffering as much as anyone. A video tour of the Jelsa waterfront yesterday, with absolutely everything shut. Beautiful, no doubt, but heartbreaking. 

The good news is that the virus will pass, the gorgeous island of Hvar will remain gorgeous and be waiting for your visit. 

In the meantime, stay safe. 

For the latest on the coronavirus crisis in Croatia, follow the dedicated TCN section.  

Tagged under: hvar jelsa