Cycle Croatia – Day 2
Hvar Town, Sućuraj, Drvenik, Gradac
Most of the Dalmatian Islands are long and thin, with Hvar being the longest. After our short start to the trip yesterday, it was good to know we were in for a long day with a fair amount of climbing.
After leaving Hvar Town we rose to 400 metres within the first 9 kilometers, which woke up the legs. But riding along such a quiet road let us chat and forget about the gradient.
Even though the first 20k was back the way we came yesterday it seemed different. The villages we cycled through were to become a major part of this wonderful trip, with friendly locals wherever we went.
At Velo Grablje just 15k away from Hvar Town, there is a restaurant Vidikovac Levanda, and a hut on the side of the road, which is home to a lady who makes honey and preserves. She also designs cycling tops with a map of the islands on the back – well worth a stop.
Cycle through the back streets of Stari Grad gives you a feel for the way people have lived for centuries, and we came out to see the quaint little harbour and stop for a coffee.
Jelsa is also a lovely place to stop, and then you enjoy the coast line for a while just before you hit the second climb of the day.
The climbing is worth it, not only for the spectacular views, but also the little villages who rarely see tourists.
With a fantastic descent on smooth roads you can see many of the other islands as you meander around, and the mainland in front of you with the mountain behind, this gave me a seed of thought for a future ride.
Into the harbour at Sucuraj, and again the ferry to Drvenik was efficient. Then 12 kilometers along the coast to Gradac at dusk to finish a tough and rewarding day.