Monday, 20 June 2022

Croatia Rugby Team Finishes 5th at European Championship in Budapest

June 20, 2022 - After finishing tenth place in Zagreb, the rejuvenated Croatia rugby team secured an impressive fifth place at the second tournament of the European Championship Sevens Series, Trophy Series in Budapest.

The Croatia rugby players beat Hungary (29-17) in the group and lost to Wales (5-50) and Denmark (14-19) before losing in the quarterfinals to the later champion Ireland 0-57. However, in the fifth to eighth place playoffs, they recorded two victories, reports

Croatia won first against the hosts Hungary, this time 24-19, thanks to the pass of captain Nikola Pavlović in the extension of the dramatic match. Then, in the fight for fifth place, they defeated Sweden 26-21.

"I am pleased that after finishing tenth place in Zagreb, we made so much progress in a week. It's great. When you put aside the big three, Ireland, England, and Wales, we are at the top. We have a young team led by a returnee Nik Jurišić, who is a player of superiority. I said that after Zagreb, defeats are not so terrible when you learn and progress. Here we made much fewer mistakes," said coach Anthony Poša.

Ireland, England, Wales, and Romania have managed to enter a higher rank, and Croatia will play against other nations next season.

"Rugby 7 is very demanding, and the club level in Croatia is much lower than this. That's why we have to work all year round because the three weeks we spend preparing for tournaments like this are not enough. Against Wales and Ireland, I rested some players. After that, our focus was to beat Hungary and Sweden," Poša added.

In the final, as in Zagreb, Ireland beat England, this time, it was 35-14. Wales finished third.

The final standings of the tournament in Budapest: 1. Ireland, 2. England, 3. Wales, 4. Romania, 5. Croatia, 6. Sweden, 7. Hungary, 8. Luxembourg, 9. Israel, 10. Latvia, 11. Bulgaria, 12. Denmark.

Overall standings after both tournaments: 1. Ireland 40 points, 2. England 36, 3. Wales 32, 4. Romania 26, 5. Hungary 22, 6. Sweden 18, 7. Croatia 15, 8. Israel 14, 9. Luxembourg 12, 10. Denmark 5, 11. Latvia 5, 12. Bulgaria 3

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated sports section


Monday, 20 June 2022

Rijeka Appoints Fausto Budicin as New Coach

June 20, 2022 - Former Istra 1961 coach Fausto Budicin will lead Rijeka in the upcoming season, the club announced on Monday. 

Croatian First League football club Rijeka announced on Monday that Fausto Budicin (41) has been appointed the new coach, replacing Goran Tomić, while Dragan Tadić (49) will be the technical director, who will also be in charge of the professional staff.

Both Budicin and Tadić are former players of Rijeka. Budicin wore the jersey of the Rujevica club from 2005 to 2011, while Tadić was a member of Rijeka from 2003 to 2007.

"Thank you to President Damir Mišković and the entire Administration for the trust they have shown us. We are looking forward to the new challenge and we believe that we will justify their trust with the results on the pitch," Budicin said.

In his coaching career so far, Budicin led Orijent 1919 in the 2019/20 season and reached the qualifications for a spot in the First HNL. From August 2020 to February 2021, he was on the bench of Istra 1961.

Budicin replaces Goran Tomić on the Rijeka bench, who amicably terminated his contract with the club after the end of last season, in which the club finished fourth place in the Croatian Championship and reached the Cup final where they lost to Hajduk 1:3. 

At the end of last season, Tadić led Hr. Dragovoljac. 

Rijeka also recently signed Mario Vrančić. Last season, Vrančić played for Stoke City in the Championship. Mario plays as an offensive midfielder and arrived in Rijeka on a one-year loan with the possibility of buying his contract.

Behind Vrančić is an impressive career in which he wore the jerseys of Mainz, Paderborn, Darmstadt, Norwich City, and Stoke City. Rijeka is a new station, a new opportunity to prove himself, and a great challenge. Vrančić played with Josip Drmić, Antonio Čolak, and Roman Bezjak in his career.

"I am very happy to be a new player of Rijeka. This is a new challenge for me, I chose Rijeka because I have a very good feeling," said Mario Vrančić.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated sports section


Monday, 20 June 2022

Zadar Digital Nomad Week Diary: Fifth Day Recap

June 20, 2022 - Continuing the rich programme of the first Zadar Digital Nomad Week, a day full of interesting keynotes and workshops also included a visit to a magical place in Croatia and the most beautiful sunset in the world.

As usual for Zadar Digital Nomad Week, the programme on the fifth day started early. The theme around which the activities would revolve would be ''Nomads + Tech''. We got off to a great start with a workshop by Sam Brown, another familiar face going back to last year's memorable Dubrovnik Digital Nomads in Residence. For those who haven't had the pleasure, Sam is a digital nomad from London who in October 2020 sold everything, including his wine business, to become a traveler and digital nomad. Sam is a content creator, writer, and programmer, and in his workshop on career pivots, attendees were able to learn that it is never too late to seek new professional horizons, and how one can find the ideal job that fits our new goals.


Photo: Jose Alfonso Cussianovich/Total Croatia News

The chosen venue for Sam's workshop was the impressive Coin Cowork Space, in the city of Zadar, and those who attended had the opportunity not only to take notes but also to be part of a personalized session with Sam to redirect professional goals and how to achieve them.

At 11:00 am, one of the most interesting workshops on the show was held online by Ethan Mayers, called ''The 1st Step is the 1st Step''. In it, Ethan explored various topics that revolve around making decisions, precisely in the world of digital nomads, where these decisions can sometimes be intimidating due to the fact of leaving your home and venturing into an unknown world as a remote worker. Perhaps one of the most memorable phrases is that ''the most critical decision you make is making a decision''. Sam and Ethan's workshops were definitely able to add a great dose of optimism to the Zadar Digital Nomad Week programme.

Up next, we say goodbye briefly to the Zadar region, as we headed not far towards Lika. After all, what's a Nomads + Tech day without a visit to the birthplace of one of the most influential people in human history? Close to Gospić, we reach Smiljan, where the brilliant Nikola Tesla was born on July 10, 1856. The small house where Tesla grew up has been converted into a museum and memorial place to celebrate the genius, inventor, electrical engineer, mechanical engineer, and futurist.


Photo: Jose Alfonso Cussianovich/Total Croatia News

After a good session of inspiration touring the interiors of the museum, including a quick tour thanks to Iva Peroković from Swanky Travel, we settle into the gardens for the second panel of the Zadar Digital Nomad Week, where Mirela Marović from BIZkoshnica, Sam Brown, Iva Perokovic, and DJ and digital nomad from South Africa Viktoria Botha chatted about a very hot and interesting topic at the same time: ''Everyone loves nomads?'' The panel was moderated by Tanja Polegubić of Saltwater Nomads.


Photo: Jose Alfonso Cussianovich/Total Croatia News

It was a great exchange of experiences and insights, both from people who have been in close contact with digital nomads in the last year, such as Mirela through her cowork space and Iva through her travel agency, as well as from the digital nomads themselves, Sam and Victoria. Although there is a stigma toward digital nomads and their connection with the destinations they go to, everyone could agree that digital nomads go beyond professional fulfillment and networking, but also try to live authentic experiences that allow them to connect better with the country in which they are located.


Photo: Jose Alfonso Cussianovich/Total Croatia News

After a successful panel, there was no better way to say goodbye to Nikola Tesla's birthplace than in a Tesla car itself. Courtesy of Davor Čordaš of Rent a Tesla, panelists, and attendees were able to sit in a Tesla car and see firsthand what the future holds for the automotive industry.


Photo: Jose Alfonso Cussianovich/Total Croatia News

We head back to Zadar to witness one of the reasons why it is so famous: its spectacular sunsets. And what better way to enjoy it than with a tour of the old city of Zadar led by the very enthusiastic and ''zadranka'', Vlatka Pehar. We met at 20:00 between the popular Greetings to the Sun monument and Zadar's most famous musician, the sea organ. From there, we said goodbye to the sun and walked the ancient and history-rich streets of Zadar's old town, because every day you learn something new in Dalmatian cities.

For the latest news and features about digital nomads in Croatia, check out the dedicated TCN section

Monday, 20 June 2022

Win Two Tickets to Visit Plitvice Lakes National Park with TCN!

June 20, 2022 - Total Croatia News has organised a photo competition in collaboration with Plitvice Lakes National Park with the theme ''Croatia's Natural Beauty in Spring'', on the occasion of the official start of summer on June the 21st. The winner will be awarded two tickets to visit the largest and oldest national park in all of Croatia.

With spring drawing to a close and making way for summer, we think now is a good time to celebrate and highlight the photos our readers and followers have taken during these colourful months which boast Croatia's natural beauty. As such, Total Croatia News is pleased to announce the launching of this photo competition, a collaboration with Plitvice Lakes National Park.

Five photos will be chosen by a jury made up of members and representatives of Total Croatia News. These photos will be highlighted and shared on our respective websites and social media accounts, and one winner will win two tickets to visit Plitvice Lakes National Park.

How can I participate?

The steps to participate in the photo competition are:

  • Share your photo on your Instagram profile (your profile needs to be public).
  • Be sure to include the location where you took the photo. It can be on the photo, or below in the caption.
  • Use the hashtag #TCNxPlitvice
  • Tag @totalcroatianews and @plitvicelakesnp
  • Follow @totalcroatianews and @plitvicelakesnp

That’s it! You're now participating! Remember that you can only participate once and submit just one (1) photograph.

The deadline for submitting your photo is on Friday, July the 7th at midnight. Photos with a later date will not be placed in participation in the contest.

Don't forget that:

  • The theme of the competition is “Croatia’s Natural Beauty in Spring”. All photos around Croatian cities, towns, national and nature parks are allowed, but we encourage you to highlight the nature that surrounds you.
  • The following are allowed: photographs taken with smartphones, non-professional digital cameras, professional digital cameras, non-professional analog cameras, and professional analog cameras.
  • The following are allowed: photographs of all styles, colours, angles, and orientations (vertical or horizontal).
  • Not allowed: photographs that include obscene content or photos taken with drones.

For more information, rules, and FAQs, you can download the contest guidelines HERE.

For more on what to do and how to get to Plitvice Lakes National Park, check out our dedicated Total Croatia page HERE. Additionally, feel free to visit our 2021 guide on all Croatian National and Nature Parks HERE. Both are now now in whatever language you select from the list.

For more on travel in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page

Monday, 20 June 2022

21 Weekly Turkish Airlines Croatia Flights in July, Korean Air Zagreb Charters Scheduled for October

June 20, 2022 - The latest flight news to Croatia as over 20 Turkish Airlines Croatia flights will run in July, and Korean Air has announced their charter schedule for Zagreb later this year. 

Turkish Airlines has announced several flights to Croatian airports in July. The Turkish national carrier plans to operate 21 rotations a week to Croatia, 14 flights a week to the Croatian capital, and 7 flights a week to Croatia's southernmost airport, reports Croatian Aviation

According to the announcements and information available on the airline's official website, Zagreb will have 2 daily aircraft rotations on the Istanbul (IST) - Zagreb (ZAG) - Istanbul (IST) route in July. Flights will take place daily in the morning and evening.

Turkish Airlines' morning and evening departures from Zagreb to Istanbul are planned according to the following daily schedule:

Zagreb (STD): 08:55 Istanbul (STA): 12:10 Flight time: 2h and 15min

Zagreb (STD): 20:15 Istanbul (STA): 23:30 Flight time: 2h and 15 min

Narrow-body aircraft type A321 (43 rotations) and B737-800 (17 rotations) were mostly announced on the Istanbul - Zagreb - Istanbul route. It is interesting that according to the current schedule and flight announcement,  Turkish plans one morning rotation on July 9 with the B737 MAX 8 aircraft, while on July 15 it plans to do one evening rotation with the A320 aircraft.

On the Istanbul - Dubrovnik - Istanbul line, narrow-body aircraft type A321 and B737-800 were also announced in the largest number. Other types of aircraft on flights between Dubrovnik and Istanbul include the A320, A319, and B737-900.

Furthermore, as announced last week, Korean Air will operate charter flights to Zagreb this October and has now published the flight schedule.

Ex Yu Aviation reports that a total of four charters from Seoul to Zagreb will run on September 30, October 7, October 14, and October 21. Return flights are scheduled for October 8, 15, 22, and 28. Airbus A330-200 aircraft will fly on this route. Flights leave Seoul at 09:00, arriving in Zagreb at 15:25 the same day, with departure from Zagreb at 18:25, and arrival in Seoul at 12.15 the following day. 

For more on flights to Croatia and other travel announcements, make sure to check out our dedicated travel section.

Monday, 20 June 2022

Zadar Airport Records Pre-Pandemic Levels of Air Traffic

June the 20th, 2022 - Zadar Airport is recording impressive pre-pandemic results in terms of air traffic so far this year, as it seems that the horrendous coronavirus-dominated era is well and truly behind us.

The beautiful City of Zadar and its surrounding islands are highly popular destinations for foreign and domestic visitors, and now all epidemiological restrictions in Croatia and across Europe are now a thing of the past, Zadar Airport's numbers are finally climbing to excellent heights following two years of nail-biting stagnancy and depression.

As Morski writes, ever since the summer season officially opened, Zadar Airport's traffic has finally been at pre-pandemic levels. New airlines are also being introduced, and record numbers continue to be expected.

Over this past weekend, about 20,000 passengers will pass through the airport, both in departures and arrivals.

Zadar Airport had one of the best recoveries after the COVID-19 crisis last year and back in 2020, and this year the situation seems to be even better. There are four new airlines, charter flights have started, there are as many as sixteen new destinations and there is almost no European city with which Zadar is not currently connected.

This Dalmatian airport's traffic could exceed the record figures seen back during the pre-pandemic year of 2019 this year, and due to the growing number of passengers, the passenger terminal is also being expanded. This is a multi-year project, in the first phase a temporary building will be built for the reception and departure of passengers while the existing one is being expanded, writes HRT.

Most passengers are carried to and from Zadar Airport by the wildly popular Irish carrier Ryanair, which holds more than 60 percent of the routes, and it has opened its third base in Zadar.

''This is extremely important to us, given that Ryanair opens bases only at airports where it has many years of cooperation and trust. This year, there are fourteen new lines as far as Ryanair is concerned, which would mean ten to fifteen lines a day from Zadar Airport to all European destinations,'' said Nikola Barac, a spokesman for Zadar Airport.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated travel section.

Monday, 20 June 2022

Split Airport Expecting Excellent July Results as Season Ramps Up

June the 20th, 2022 - Split Airport is rubbing its hands in anticipation of an excellent July as the height of the Croatian summer tourist season begins to ramp up.

After two dreadful years of coronavirus-induced issues directly affecting travel and tourism, the sector is understandably delighted with the current figures being recorded throughout all Croatian airports, as it seems the woes caused by the global pandemic are well and truly behind us now.

2019, the year before the world as we knew it changed in the most unprecedented manner, is remembered as being a record one. Numbers in terms of air and tourist traffic were phenomenal, and the desire to get back to that during those most difficult two years of 2020 and 2021 seems to finally be coming to fruition.

As Morski writes, proof that the summer tourist season across Split-Dalmatia County is heating up has definitely been confirmed by the fact that 40,000 passengers and 175 planes from 90 destinations and 24 countries were expected at Split Airport over this past weekend.

Mate Melvan from Split Airport stated that this is the beginning of what they refer to as ''June's striking weekends'', which bring a lot of people through the airport and signal a great July that could be at the record level of 2019 or hopefully even stronger.

From the beginning of this year until today, 660 thousand passengers have passed through Split Airport, and last year in the same period 116 thousand of them, which is a difference of 550 thousand passengers.

Compared to 2019, we have 80 percent of the turnover so far, and we expect to end the year within 80 percent. Split is now connected with 24 countries and 90 destinations, meaning the city is connected with the whole world,'' said Melvan.

There will be no less crowds at Split's ferry port either, where 50,000 passengers and 11,000 vehicles are expected over this four-day extended weekend, N1 reports.

Jelena Ivulic from the Croatian ferry company Jadrolinija stated that the pressure on the port has been on since Wednesday afternoon, meaning that they had to introduce two more ferry lines than they'd normally have over this past weekend.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated travel section.

Monday, 20 June 2022

Flixbus Enjoys Croatian Pre-Season Results Which Outdo 2019

June the 20th, 2022 - The Croatian pre-season has been more than excellent for the wildly popular Flixbus company, which has recorded figures which even outdo those recorded back in the pre-pandemic, record year of 2019.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Darko Bicak writes, one of the largest international bus carriers, FlixBus, marked the sixth anniversary of its operations in the Republic of Croatia recently. Namely, on June the 16th, 2016, FlixBus started with the first bus lines from the four largest Croatian cities - Zagreb, Split, Osijek and Rijeka.

Very quickly, thanks to Croatian bus carriers, the network of bus lines branched out throughout Croatia, connecting smaller and larger destinations with each other and with the rest of Europe.

As Croatia has become one of the most desirable tourist destinations in recent years, FlixBus passengers in this country are not only residents of Croatia, but also many tourists who come from all over the world.

With the entry of FlixBus into the Republic of Croatia, the bus industry has undergone a transformation and technological modernisation, adapted to the needs of the modern traveller, and offered a high level of service during the trip.

Thanks to the high quality of the service, which was initially more similar to that in the aviation industry than the bus industry - an easy way to buy tickets, the availability of many destinations across Europe, and the ratio of service and ticket prices - bus travel is recognised today not only as an alternative to cars or planes, but for many as a first choice when travelling.

“With its innovative business model that has shown its flexibility and adaptability to the current market situation during the pandemic-dominated years, ie by monitoring passengers' movement needs, preserving the existing network of lines and upgrading them, FlixBus continues to provide people with unhindered movement.

The fact that passengers are loyal to these now commonly seen green buses and are eager to travel is indicated by the growth from the beginning of the Croatian pre-season of 20 percent more passengers when compared to the record 2019,'' said FlixBus CEE South, headed by Ante Grbes.

Although it was created as a bus platform, FlixBus has been insisting on intermodal transport since its very inception, primarily connecting buses and railways, which has not yet taken root in Croatia, but with the Croatian pre-season this year being as amazing as it has been for the company, it's likely that the next step is soon to come.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated travel and business sections.

Monday, 20 June 2022

First Concrete Croatian Tourism Data Arrives: 2019 Who?

June the 20th, 2022 - The first concrete Croatian tourism data is finally in, and it looks as if we can well and truly put the coronavirus-dominated years of 2020 and 2021 behind us. The Finance Minister believes that we could very much blow even the record year of 2019's numbers out of the water this summer season.

As Morski writes, Croatian Finance Minister Zdravko Maric has expressed his hope that there will be no sudden and negative shocks to come, and as long as there aren't, this year could absolutely surpass the record year of 2019.

After two pandemic-dominated years, people are finally up and about and travelling once again. The epidemiological measures for Europe are now a thing of the past. Neither the Ukrainian war, nor the enormous jump in prices, nor the rage of ongoing and seemingly endless inflation are preventing anyone from hopping in their cars, on buses, trains and planes. This trend has been very clearly shown by all the announcements of the tourist season here in Croatia, but also the actual Croatian tourism data from the field.

After the excellent Easter tourist results, this new, concrete Croatian tourism data speaks very much in favour of the announcements of an excellent height of the summer tourist season. Corpus Christi (Croatian: Tijelovo) is one of the holidays by which one can typically assess what kind of summer season awaits the country, and the data on traffic generated for that holiday on the country's motorways heading in the direction of the coast show that this tourist season could surpass that of 2019.

According to Hrvatske autoceste (Croatian motorways), 38,387 vehicles entered the motorway via the Lucko toll station on the 16th of June, 2022. That is 4.4 percent more vehicles than were recorded back during 2019. At that time, 36,752 vehicles entered the motorway for Tijelovo at Lucko. Considering that Croatia is widely recognised as a car destination in Europe due to its highly developed and excellently built motorway network, this data is sufficient to be rubbing our hands together for some really great tourist months, Jutarnji list writes.

Minister of Finance Zdravko Maric joined in with the good announcements for the season a few days ago, saying that the value of fiscalised bills/receipts for the tourism sector in the first five and a half months of this year is 22 percent higher than the record tourist year of 2019, and that we have every right to expect a top quality tourist season.

The announcements of an excellent tourist season are supported by the concrete Croatian tourism data from the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) which notes that 1.5 million tourists stayed in commercial accommodation in the first four months of 2022, who realised 4.4 million overnight stays, which is 184 and 190 percent more than in the same period last year.

In the first four months of this year, commercial accommodation recorded one million tourists and almost three million more overnight stays than in the same months back in 2021, the Central Bureau of Statistics announced.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated travel section.

Sunday, 19 June 2022

Ana Đerek Wins Two More Medals at Gymnastics World Cup

June 19, 2022 - Croatian gymnast Ana Đerek won two new medals at the World Cup tournament. After Varna (gold on the beam and bronze on the ground) and Osijek (silver on the beam and ground), she climbed the podium in Koper twice on Sunday.

She gilded the ground floor and won silver on the beam, continuing an incredible series, the third SK in a row this season to win two medals each, reports 24sata. Or even better, she is thrilled for the fourth weekend in a row, since she had the Croatian Championship between Varna and Osijek, where she won gold twice.

The Olympian of the GK Marjan from Split opened the "vintage" in Slovenia with 2nd place on the beam with a score of 13,250. Only Hungarian Zsofia Kovacz (13,650) was better, while her compatriot Greta Mayer (12,450) was bronze. The second Croatian finalist on the beam today, Tina Zelčić (ZTD Hrvatski sokol) remained one step closer to the podium, she is fourth with 11,700 points in her third SK final in her career.

Ana Đerek's silver on the beam was the 18th medal in the World Cup tournaments, but only a few moments later she reached the 19th in her 33rd final thanks to gold on the ground floor.

She won it with a score of 12,900, and stood on the podium with silver medalist Poppy-Grace Stickler (12,750) and bronze medalist Greta Mayer (12,650). This is Ani's second gold this season after the one on the beam in Varna, but also the fifth in her career at SK.

''Three World Cups in a row, six medals, today gold and silver, I really couldn't be happier'', said Ana.

''Things happened this time on my own, considering that I made a small mistake at the beginning of the exercise on the ground floor where I think I thought that I had dropped out of the fight for gold, but in the end, things turned out so well that even with that one mistake I won gold'', she added.

The Croatian national team is now turning to the Mediterranean Games, and Tin Srbić, Jakov Vlahek, Mateo Žugec, Ana Đerek, and Tijana Korent, their coaches Lucijan Krce and Miroslav Končarević, and judges Dunja Lederer and Ratko Vuković will travel to Algeria on Wednesday.

For more, make sure to check out our dedicated sports section

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