Stari Grad in Croatia

Wednesday, 2 March 2022 - 11:00 am (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General, UNESCO World Heritage
Reading Time:  5 minutes

© flickr.com - Jocelyn Erskine-Kellie/cc-by-2.0

© flickr.com – Jocelyn Erskine-Kellie/cc-by-2.0

Stari Grad (“Old Town”) is a town on the northern side of the island of Hvar in Dalmatia, Croatia. One of the oldest towns in Europe, its position at the end of a long, protected bay and next to prime agricultural land has long made it attractive for human settlement. Stari Grad is also a municipality within the Split-Dalmatia County. The most ancient part of Stari Grad falls within the UNESCO Protected World Heritage Site of the Stari Grad Plain, while the entire municipality lies within the surrounding buffer zone.

Stari Grad was originally named Faros by the Greek settlers from the island of Paros, who arrived in 384 BC. While the name Faros is strikingly similar to the name of the Greek island the settlers arrived from, there is an alternate theory that it came from the previous inhabitants of the area. A great naval battle was recorded a year after the establishment of Pharos colony by a Greek inscription in Pharos (384 – 383 BC) and by the Greek historian Diodorus Siculus (80 – 29 BC), initiated by conflicts between the Greek colonists and the indigenous Hvar islanders, the Liburnians, who asked their compatriots for support. 10,000 Liburnians sailed out from their capital Idassa (Zadar), led by the Iadasinoi (people of Zadar), and laid siege to Pharos. The Syracusan fleet positioned in Issa was informed in time, and Greek triremes attacked the siege fleet, taking victory in the end. According to Diodorus, the Greeks killed more than 5,000 and captured 2,000 prisoners, ran down or captured their ships, and burned their weapons in dedication to their gods. This battle meant the loss of the most important strategic Liburnian positions in the centre of the Adriatic, resulting in their final retreat to their main ethnic region, Liburnia, and their complete departure from the Italic coast, apart from Truentum. In Roman times, the town became known as Faria, which was turned into Hvar by the incoming Slav population. When the administrative capital of the island was moved to today’s Hvar town on the south coast, the old town became simply known as Stari Grad (literally “old city” in Croatian).

© flickr.com - Jocelyn Erskine-Kellie/cc-by-2.0 © panoramio.com - qwesy qwesy/cc-by-3.0 © panoramio.com - sanja mm/cc-by-3.0 © flickr.com - Jocelyn Erskine-Kellie/cc-by-2.0 © Sebastian Mierzwa/cc-by-sa-4.0 © F.G. comm/cc-by-sa-3.0 Central park © Samuli Lintula/cc-by-3.0 © Falk2/cc-by-sa-4.0
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© flickr.com - Jocelyn Erskine-Kellie/cc-by-2.0
Stari Grad lies on the north side of the island of Hvar, at the end of the Stari Grad Bay, a deep water channel, protected to the north by the hills of the Kabal peninsula and by the high mountain ridge of Hvar to the south. The island’s best agricultural land opens up to the east of Stari Grad town. This fertile plain has been farmed since pre-historic times, and the Greek field layout is still largely intact, thanks to continuing maintenance over the years of its dry stone walls. In 2008, the Stari Grad Plain became a UNESCO protected world heritage site.

There are numerous bays on each side of Stari Grad Bay. One of the largest bays is Tiha, located on the northern side. Tiha is a perfect anchoring point as it is safe, and sheltered from all winds (the name Tiha translates to silent/calm). Zavala is a slightly smaller bay, but equally calm, with plenty of anchoring spots. The other side (south side) of Stari Grad bay, is quite higher, and offers smaller bays with hills meters away from the beach. Gracisce is one of those bays, with a pebble covered beach, and a thick pine forest just meters above. Closer to the city on the southern side there are a few beautiful beaches, such as the small sandy Maslinica bay. One more worth mentioning is Arkada, located underneath the hotel of the same name on the northern side, with a calm space for anchoring nearby.

Read more on Stari Grad, hvarinfo.com – Stari Grad and Wikipedia Stari Grad (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State - Weather report by weather.com - Global Passport Power Rank - Travel Risk Map - Democracy Index - GDP according to IMF, UN, and World Bank - Global Competitiveness Report - Corruption Perceptions Index - Press Freedom Index - World Justice Project - Rule of Law Index - UN Human Development Index - Global Peace Index - Travel & Tourism Competitiveness Index). Photos by Wikimedia Commons. If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.




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