This whole island has been declared a National Park and even upon approach on the ferry you can see why, it is stunning. It is 18 miles square, half of which is covered in forests, and with its many vineyards, olive trees and hills, Lastovo is truly beautiful to look at.
In fact that is mainly what I did – just gaze in wonder at what was in front of me, with an occasional very hot and sweaty walk up a hill and then a sit down and another gaze at the vista. After the daytime gazing I watched the sunset every night and then gazed at the sky. With very little light pollution the stars are bright and in abundance. It is very easy to get lost in the vastness of the universe and forget who and where you are.
Like its nearby island Vis, Lastovo was a military region which barred any foreign nationals until the late 1980s, but unlike Vis it is a bit further from the other popular islands so although there is tourism it is not the island’s sole focus. The locals told me that there are many activities outside the tourist summer season including a period of community octopus fishing, and eating, and later a season of crazy partying into the early hours of the morning but I couldn’t work out if there was a reason for the parties beyond just trying to cope with winter.
This was the first time I struggled with knowing so little Croatian and English was not as well known, or at least not as forthcoming, as on the other islands but equally on my third day my hand was shaken in the local shop and I was welcomed as more than just a passing tourist.
Very little happened here and when it did it was quite slow but the nature, the stars and the peace were truly wonderful. I extended my stay and even then I didn’t want to leave.