Hvar Wine Region

Hvar island is a dynamic landscape.Its mountain ridge extends from east to west for 68 km, making Hvar the longest of all the Croatian islands. The highest peak, Sv. Nikola (628 m), provides a view of the sea and other islands to the north and south. In the northwestern part of the island, the ridge transitions into hills among which are villages surrounded by terraced vineyards, finally becoming a fertile plain at sea level, the site of Hvar's first settlements.

Hvar BeachesHvar south shore: Vineyards around Sv. Nedjelja

The south side of the island, near Sv. Nedjelja is cut off by cliffs, and towards the east it drops steeply into the sea, forming a dolac, bond and rot (valley, depression and headland) ending in beautiful sandy beaches, which is why the famous south-facing vineyards on the island are known as "Hvar's beaches".

Over time, the face of our island was formed by two factors, the Mediterranean climate and the Hvar farmers. The karst landscape, with its shallow soil full of rocks, was turned into arable land as the farmers built stone walls and mounds. Imagine how much effort was needed to create today's landscape!

Terraced VineyardsNorth-facing hills: terraced vineyards between Svirče and Pitve

With its vineyards, olive groves, orchards, lavender fields, flower meadows and forests, interlaced with dry-stone walls and mounds, our island looks like a mosaic when seen from the air. And in the winter and early spring seasonal streams appear, and flow all over the island. One such stream, the ancient river Farion, was one of the reasons why the Greek settlers chose this island.

Though vines were already grown by the early Illyrians, it is since the arrival of the Greeks from the island of Paros and the establishment of Pharos (Stari Grad) in 384 BC, that wine has become one of the dominant industries of the island.

Today the Stari Grad Plain, known as "Chora Pharou" by the ancient Greeks and "Ager Pharensis" by the Romans, is a UNESCO protected world heritage site and is the best preserved example of a Greek cadastral agricultural plan.

Microclimate areas

 Hvar Beaches

  • South side of the island
  • Sv. Nedjelja, Jagodna, Ivan Dolac, Medvid Bod, Zavala, Gromin Dolac
  • Steep slopes, turning into dolac, bond and rot
  • Dolac ending in beautiful sandy beaches
  • Calcareous soils with plenty of rocks
  • Sun's rays fall almost vertically to the ground and are reflected on the stones
  • Airy, well-drained positions
  • Problems with v.loze diseases are rare, more often the problem is powdery mildew (dial. adversity or lug), also blight (peronošpera)
  • Top location for growing Plavac Mali
  • Other varieties grown to a lesser extent: Pošip, Maraština, Muscat and Darnekuša
  • Natural vegetation surrounding vineyards is maquis: rosemary (Rosmarinus officinalis L.), myrtle (Myrtus communis L.), thorn bush (Paliurus spina Christy L.), žuka (Spartium junceum L.), wild rose (Rosa L. sempervirens), etc.

Terraced vineyards

  • Central part of the island, north side
  • Pitve, Vrisnik, Svirče, Vrbanj, Dol
  • Patchwork of vineyards, olive trees and natural vegetation entwined stonewalls
  • Most beautiful vineyards are those on the banda (side) behind Svirče and Vrbanj, steep terraces, small size, known as lojčići in the local dialect
  • Soil is varied, with more or less rocks, sandy, sandy-loam and brown soil on limestone and dolomite
  • Position faces north and north-east
  • Airy, well-drained positions
  • Area rich in flowing water (seasonal in winter/spring)
  • Problems with vine diseases are rare
  • Plavac Mali achieves high quality
  • Other varieties grown to a lesser extent: Darnekuša and Bogdanuša
  • Vegetation surrounding vineyards are forests of pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) and jasmine (Querxus ilex L.), and cultivated plants such as olive (Olea europea L.), lavender (Lavandula officinalis L., Lavandula hybrida L.), fig (Ficus carica L.), almonds (Prunus amygdalus L.), carob (Ceratonia siliqua L.), mulberry (Morus nigra L.), and others.

Fields (Ager)

Stari Grad Plain, known as "Chora Pharou" by the ancient Greeks and "Ager Pharensis" by the Romans is today a UNESCO protected area. The plots as laid out by the ancient Greeks are preserved thanks to centuries of hard-working farmers, who are the guardians of the stone walls. The original kadastral plot size of 900 x 180 metres is still perfectly visible, best seen from the air. Ancient field boundaries stretch from Stari Grad in the west to Vrboska and Jelsa in the east, and Dol, Vrbanj and Svirče on the south side.

Jelsa fields, from the town of Jelsa westwards, connects with the Stari Grad fields

  • Soil is varied. The edges of the field soil can be quite rocky and shallow, while parts of the field have medium-deep to deep soils, and alternate rigolana clay-loam, loam and sandy soil. In some places red soil (terra rossa).
  • During the winter and early spring, a large part of the field retains the water, especially in the lowest areas where it puddles and can cover an area of ​​several acres in a very rainy years.
  • Vine in fields osijetljivija at onset of disease, especially mildew-
  • Various varieties grown: Plavac Mali (does not give the best quality in the field, it is difficult to mature), Bogdanuša (best in red and poorer soil at the edges of fields), Parč, Kuč, Maraština, Tuscan Trebbiano, Muscat, and more recently Cabernet Sauvignon, Syrah, Merlot, and others.
  • Vineyards are interspersed by other agriculture, mostly olive trees and lavender, and to a lesser extent vegetables and fruits. Part of the field is covered with forests and hedges of blackberry (Rubus fruticosus L.), thorn bushes (Paliurus spina Christy L.), etc.


  • Southwestern part of the island
  • Terraces extend from Milna to Hvar town
  • Vineyards alternate with olive groves
  • Calcareous soil on marl
  • Airy, well-drained locations
  • No major problems with vine diseases, but due to the soil chlorosis often occurs (problem adopting iron).
  • Varieties grown: Plavac Mail, Pošip, Bogdanuša and other varieties

Top of the Island - Vorh and karst fields in the east of the island

  • Vorh is a plateau on the spine of the island, above Vrisnik, Svirče and Vrbanj on the north side, and Ivan Dolac and Sv.Nedjelja to the south, at a height of about 400 metres above sea level
  • Small rocky fields cover an area of ​​Poljica to Sućuraj
  • Shallow, rocky soil in which grow vineyards and lavender as the main culture
  • Air is slightly sharper than the rest of the island because of the higher altitude
  • Varieties grown: Darnekuša, Kuč, Parč, Plavac Mali and others
  • Natural vegetation is maquis, mainly types of strawberry (Arbutus unedo L.), heather (Erica multiflora L.), sage (Salvia officinalis L.), etc., and Aleppo pine (Pinus halepensis L.), and Dalmatian black pine (Pinus dalmatica Vis.)

Valleys (bays)

  • On the northern side of the island and islets
  • Valley Sv Luka, Grebišća, Sv. Klement, and others
  • Sandy, sandy-loam soils
  • Soils are more or less rocky, in bays and in the interior of the island
  • Vineyards descending to the sea to the beautiful sandy beach
  • Various grape varieties grown
  • Valleys surrounded by pine trees, and sometimes bush