National Geographic : 1990 Aug
I would rather travel the coast on Yugosla via's excellent ferry service, Jadrolinija, which annually carries 6.3 million passengers and a million vehicles. Its 120 ports of call include places as small as Drvenik, population about 150. The service is punctual, clean, and inexpensive. Without it, many of the Adriatic coast's 66 inhabited islands would be isolated. One day I boarded a ferry for Hvar. The island's green hills shelter tidy ports with fine Renaissance architecture and a pleasing climate where the Venetian fleet used to winter and repair its ships. Among its blessings, Hvar, like the other islands, is free of ethnic strife. And the dependable sunshine favors lavanda-whose oil is used in perfume, after shave, medicines, and washing powders. Jakov Dulcic, a lavender farmer, showed me his fields. For centuries peasants had scrabbled away the stones and heaped them into whalelike hillocks to make room for the lavender. The plants were flowering, a purple mist against the green. The afternoon waned. People were riding home on donkeys. In the nearby village of Brusje, we went to Jakov's konoba, or wine cellar. He drew amber wine from a 450-gallon cask and lifted a loaf of goat cheese from a vat of olive oil. In a walled garden Jakov placed the pitcher on a weathered table. Neighbors arrived.