Hvar Island is is located just three nautical miles away from the mainland. Along the southern coast of the island there are several smaller islands, notably the Paklenski Otoci in the west and the Šćedro island in the south.
It covers 112 square miles with fruit growing, cattle raising, and fishing being the main occupations. As of 1991 the estimated population was around 11,400.
The major divisions of the island include:
- town of Hvar (population 4,138 in 2001), the site of the first public theatre in Europe, opened in 1612.
- the town of Stari Grad, located on the north part of the island (population 2,817 in 2001), the site of one of the first human settlements on the Adriatic islands during the Antiquity Stari Grad is the main sea port on the island; most visitors arrive here via car ferries from Split.