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August 17, 2002

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From Split, we board a ferry that takes us to Hvar island. If islands could sink this one might have under the weight of so many visitors. We consider getting jailed for a place to sleep. Like a wish granted, a police officer comes by and says he has a cheap place to stay. We follow him down the street and for a moment we believe he's taking us to an empty jail cell until he shows us his mother's apartment. We pass many other backpackers wandering the streets looking for open rooms. Feeling fortunate to find an open room, we go to the beach. Swimming turned out to be simple. You don't have to wear a bathing suit; 'Naturalists' gather all over Croatia. You can get sand and sunburn on body parts that rarely see the sun. Don't expect privacy, however, since a boat or hiker always seems to be passing by.
The island scramble begins...
Hvar's thirteenth century walls can't protect you from the homeless tourist hordes. The Venetian fort overlooking the harbor was built to protect the town against the Turks who sacked the place twice, in 1539 and 1571.
Follow the police for a place to stay.
Skinny dip along the coast and moon the passing boats.
Hvar receives more sunshine than any other place on the Adriatic, over 2700 hours per year. The hotels offer a discount on cloudy days.
Trg Sv Stjepana (Stephen's square?) is the harbor's central square. The residents of Hvar usually don't name their streets because they feel street names are superfluous for this small island town.