“Man, be careful, do not be of little stature when you venture under the stars” – this is the beginning of a well-known Croatian poem “Opomena” (“Admonishment”) by Antun Branko Šimić. These lines resonant with meaning invite you to dream and fantasize, wherever you might be, so why not do just that on the intoxicating Island of Hvar?
In the late evening hours, after a night-time swim under the starry sky, stretch out on the beach and gaze up at that endless universe. The stars that surround us on this part of our planet Earth will draw you into a world of unlimited possibilities.
Alternatively, how would you like to invite your partner to a most romantic dinner? Stargazing is definitely a win. Bring a blanket, a bottle of your favourite Hvar wine and a romantic dinner is guaranteed. The spectacular Milky Way will be as if at your fingertips, and the full moon will make the sea and planktons shine. If you decide to go swimming under the full moon, tiny planktons will light up as you enter the sea. It will look as if you are swimming in tiny pieces of gold dust.
You don’t have to go far from the street lights and town centre to come across plenty of suitable places for stargazing. Whether you retreat to a nearby beach or explore the tranquillity of the inland villages, this nightly show is certainly much better than television.
The first step towards exploring the universe is undoubtedly simply watching the stars, but it’s also true that with today’s apps, you can learn a lot through your mobile device. There are many apps for you to choose from which will tell you exactly which star is right in front of you.
On Hvar every year between August 9th and 13th you can see an amazing Perseids meteor shower known as “The Tears of St. Lawrence”. The Feast of St. Lawrence, the little town’s patron saint, is celebrated in Vrboska on August 10th, to coincide with the phenomenon.
At the end of 2020, a meteor camera was mounted in the charming, truly unspoilt historic village of Humac, allowing enthusiasts to follow the action in the night sky as it happens. Find it on this link.
When you have had your fill of stargazing, Kant’s words are an appropriate farewell: “Two things fill the mind with ever-increasing wonder and awe, the more often and the more intensely the mind of thought is drawn to them: the starry heavens above me and the moral law within me.”