August 15th, 2017
So a little research online and I came across an eco-friendly camp called Cast Away in the southern part of the island of Hvar. Just 4km away from the town of Zavala lies a peaceful little campsite made up of cosy beach tents, hammocks, pallet wood seating and the most amazing view over the sea. I only had to take a look at the photos and I was on the phone to Snape, 'We have to stay there!'
Back to basic living, no electricity, no running water - just collected rain water! Just on our doorstep were beautiful pebbly beaches, distanced from the hustle and bustle of busy Hvar town with no shops or restaurants for miles. Waking up to the amazing view over looking the coastline.. to me, it sounded perfect and it was.
I think when you travel, why not make the most of every experience that you can. We've stayed in five-star hotels, a room in some womans home, apartments and now an Eco Village - why the fuck not ay! Might as well have some variety!
In all honesty I wasn't sure what to expect with the whole no water situation and only using rain water - plus it hasn't rained here in 70 days! So I thought there would be a limit on the amount of water you could use. And I guess in some ways there was - no flushing systems in place, just the good old-fashioned way of throwing some water from a bucket down the pan! The shower was rain water so no access to hot water was available. But seriously, have you ever washed your hair in rain water? You have to try it! No conditioner needed, just shampoo and your hair will be so soft!! Next time its raining get outside with a bottle of shampoo and try it, but obviously don't stand in your street naked. No-one wants to get done for flashing!
The tents had mosquito nets across the front to stop any bugs eating you alive at night. The tents do hold a lot of heat but as night falls the temperature cools. I had a good night sleep but Snape complained of the heat. To be fair he probably knocked his head on the side about 4 times throughout the night, so I can kinda see how he didn't have a good sleep!
We fell asleep outside under the stars, water crashing against the rugged rocks and the slight breeze coming from the sea, it's enough to relax anyone! The only light was coming from the big round moon along with some solar lights dotted around camp. We got up at half 5 for sunrise, wasn't the best we've seen but worth getting up for. The beach was deserted and the water so calm so we went out on the paddle board with a snorkel. Me, shitting myself at every wobble the board would make!
From the moment we got there we felt instantly relaxed. The atmosphere is so chilled and everyone is there for a nice relaxing time. Chilling in the hammocks, sitting in the 'lounge' areas made up of pallet wood and cushions, swimming in the clear sea or relaxing on the pebbly beach. So chilled you could just leave your belongings outside your tent knowing they would be quite safe. Even though the camp is in a remote place they provide free activities and equipment so you don't feel bored, snorkelling masks, paddle boarding and inflatable's. You can also rent kayaks and mountain bikes - kayaking is one of my favourite things to do. If you follow me on instagram (hanexplores) you'll see me and Snape like to go kayaking in Wales. Also as Snape is a mountain biker but due to the heat we decided not to rent any and just chill in the sea on an inflatable double ring thingy.
Back to basics is great. The kitchen area sparked so many memories of a hostel for me and took me how backpacker life is. It made me miss backpacking, living out of a bag and moving from hostel to hostel meeting great people. There are cooking facilities such as a gas stove and oven but even better, a handmade BBQ.. who doesn't love a barbie! After a short arguement about onions and peppers and how I had cut them too finely so they all fell into the BBQ (Hangry Snapey) we had our chicken skewers and a few cider's overlooking the beach as the sun went down. If your camping you might as well barbie!
Cast Away Eco Camp isn't for everyone, but I think as soon as you feel the vibe of the place and give it a go, people will LOVE it - suppose it all depends on what you like I guess. The experience is brilliant and the staff are friendly and so welcoming. If your looking for a relaxing place to stay away from the busy tourist areas then Cast Away will definitely cater those needs. Just bare in mind it's along a gravel track and make sure you read the instructions sent to you by Didier. I relied on Sat Nav Nora and she got us lost! They do also offer a free shuttle service from the main areas, Zavala, Jelsa and Stari Grad.
The only regret I have is that I didnt book us an extra few nights. Hippy Han was in her element, mind freed up and so relaxed. âœŒ
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