Tuesday, 20 December 2022

Osijek Airport: Direct Connections to Six Destinations for Advent

December 20, 2022 - If you've always wanted to visit the east of Croatia but hesitated because it's been a bit far, your time might have just come. The Osijek airport is now directly connected to six destinations: Zagreb, Split, Rijeka, Dubrovnik, Pula, and the Croatian Gastarbeiter mecca, Munich.

As Jolie.hr writes, Advent is the right time to visit continental Croatia. And Osijek Airport provides direct flights to this Eastern Croatian metropolis from the Croatian cities. You can also visit Osijek by direct flight from the Bavarian capital of Munich. Osijek Advent was declared the best in Croatia in 2021, and this year it shines with the glow of thousands of lights. Take a walk along the path of holiday magic from the art nouveau European Avenue to the fairytale Fortress, where you will find an abundance of smells and tastes of Christmas.

A rich cultural and entertainment program at the Fortress

This year's Advent is a real opportunity for family quality time, where everyone can find something for themselves. The youngest will be able to enjoy fairy tales in the Great Winter Story Room, watch cartoons in the Christmas Cinema, and write letters to Santa Claus! Concerts, lectures, exhibitions in the Archaeological Museum, and gastronomic mornings have been prepared for the big ones. Celebrated chef Rene Bakalović will create New Slavonian cuisine for visitors, preparing the most delicious Slavonian dishes in a modern way.

The ice fairy tale of the ice rink at Sokol offers unforgettable moments to young and old lovers of winter joys, and after showing off your skating skills, you will have the opportunity to warm up with mulled wine or dance to Christmas hits. And if you are not of an adventurous spirit and enjoy walking around the city more, explore the hidden parts of the city whose every corner breathes holiday magic and a Christmas atmosphere.

The most beautiful view from 35 metres

An essential part of Advent this year is the "panoramic wheel" that will take you high above the city’s rooftops. The largest Ferris wheel in Croatia is located at the Baroque Fortress, where you can enjoy a wonderful view of the city. The daytime ride places the fairy-tale city below your feet, and the night ride provides a view of thousands of lights. This year's Advent programme lasts until the 30th of December, and if you decide to spend the craziest night of the year on the streets of Osijek, the band Crvena Jabuka will count you down into the New Year on the central town square.

Visit the beautiful Baranja and the Danube region

Along with the Osijek Advent tour, you can visit the Vukovar Christmas market or the restored Eltz manor museum. After the New Year's celebration, you can enjoy the rich gastronomic offer of Baranja. Go on a tour of the wine cellars and enjoy traditional Baranja delicacies. The Slavonian metropolis has never been closer - visit Osijek and see why it won the title of the most successful continental city tourism destination! More information on the Osijek Airport website.

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

 

Sunday, 18 December 2022

WineOs - 8th Edition of Osijek Wine Fair Featuring Exclusive Workshops

December 18, 2022 - The New Year is approaching, and with it, a real treat for true hedonists - WineOS. The eighth edition of the fair of wine, delicacies, and pleasant living will once again offer its visitors exciting content and the best wines and delicacies from eastern Croatia, as well as guests from other parts of Croatia and abroad. It is happening at the traditional Gradski Vrt venue in Osijek.

As SiB writes, one of the biggest lures for many wine lovers will be the wine workshops organised by the famous wine author Željko Garmaz. Speaking of popular wine stories, which regularly attract guests to WineOS, the biggest novelty is that starting next year, there will be even more workshops, and they will take place over three days, January 12, 13, and 14. Therefore, eleven excellent workshops await on Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, featuring interesting, exclusive, and attractive topics, winemakers, and wines.

Three different topics will be explored on the first day, Thursday, January 12. At 3 p.m., representatives of Belje, one of the largest and most important wineries in eastern Croatia, will go on a journey through time into the wine past. That is, of course, tasting archival wines with interesting stories around their creation. From 4:30 p.m., sommelier Klaudio Jurčić, who has ventured into the wine industry, will talk about his friendships with winemakers while the guests are tasting his wines. The last workshop of the day, which starts at 6 p.m., is also a treat and will lure all true wine lovers. The famous Hungarian winemaker from Villany, Attila Gera, will present a vertical of his black coupage from the Kopar location.

On Friday, January 13, four workshops are scheduled, and the program will be opened at 1 p.m. by Gianfranco Kozlović with a vertical of his malvasia. At 2:30 p.m., all visitors will have the opportunity to meet another Istrian, Bruno Trapan, and his Uroboros, or aged malvasia. From Istria, at 4 p.m., the visitors can move to Fruška Gora and the Erdevik winery, which will present a vertical of its award-winning Omnibus Lector chardonnay. From 5.30 p.m., the story of the village of Umčani from the Vrgorac region and the Gašpar brothers will round it all up.

On Saturday, January 14, four unique workshops will take place as well. At 1:00 p.m., the visitors will have the opportunity to get to know the top-quality wines from the Croatian winery of the famous Mike Grgich. An hour and a half later, the story about the expansion of the Galić winery in Dalmatia and getting to know the "sea ego" of Jozo Galić is on the schedule. At 4:00 p.m., another treat for lovers of unique and different wines – a workshop of kadarka from Oszkár Maurer's cellar. The end of the programme is dedicated to the Herzegovinian winery Nuić and the native variety trnjak.

Finally, let's note that tickets can only be purchased in advance at the Viniti wine shop. Reservations can be made by e-mail at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by phone at 098/1747-108. The price of individual tickets is HRK 150 or HRK 200 (depending on the workshop), while daily packages cost HRK 500 each. There are 20 tickets for each workshop, so get in touch as soon as possible to reserve your spot! You can find more information about the workshops on the WineOS website.

Friday, 2 December 2022

Part of 5C Highway Connecting Osijek to Beli Manastir Opened

December 2, 2022 - Yesterday, the section of Corridor 5C highway, connecting Osijek and Beli Manastir, 25 kilometers long, was opened. 

The town of Osijek celebrated their day yesterday, and as a part of that celebration, Prime Minister Andrej Plenković opened yet another section of the popular Slavonika highway, Večernji list reports. Corridor 5C is an international traffic route whose goal is to connect Budapest and Ploče, and its Croatian section will be 88.6 kilometres long, and all but the final five kilometres have now been completed. The last five kilometres between Beli Manastir and Ivandarda will be completed in 2024.

This was a joint venture, thanks to HBOR and EBRD, whose funds and extremely favorable interest rates made this project a reality, Plenković added. This means that the balanced regional development of Croatia, transport connectivity and the construction of transport infrastructure are strategic priorities of our Government. The investment in this section of the highway was HRK 206.4 million. 

The construction of Slavonika, which is what the Croatian section of the corridor 5C highway is often called, started in 2005, and two years later the first section from the Sredanci rest stop to Đakovo, 23 kilometers long, was put into traffic. The mayor of Osijek, Ivan Radić, stated that the opening of the Baranja section is the best gift to Osijek. He pointed out that Osijek is now two hours away from Zagreb, and now they will be two hours away from the capitals of the neighboring countries, Budapest and Sarajevo.

The Osijek Baranja Prefect Ivan Anušić pointed out that the bridge over the Drava River, as part of Corridor 5C, is the longest bridge in Croatia, and bears the name of the 3rd Guards Brigade, which made the greatest sacrifice in the Homeland War. The mayor of Beli Manastir, Tomislav Rob, said that this is a historic day for Beli Manastir and the whole of Baranja, the biggest one since the peaceful reintegration.

 

Wednesday, 30 November 2022

First Ever Winter Wine & Walk to Take Place in Baranja

November 30, 2022 - The well-known wine walk along the undiscovered paths of Baranja is getting its winter edition for the first time this year on Saturday, December 10, 2022 – Winter Wine & Walk.

As SiB writes, on the nine km-long route through the villages of Suza and Zmajevac, the famous wine meccas of Baranja, the participants will be welcomed at 14 points by Baranja winemakers and restaurants with top-quality wines and traditional snacks.

The organisers will equip the walkers with a map, a wine glass, and a winter hat, and the participants will need to bring comfortable clothes and shoes. It is equally important to arrive in a good mood and with a good team.

The walkers will move in groups under the guidance of a tourist guide who, in addition to leading the way, will make sure that the group learns something new about Baranja.

Participants gather in Zmajevac in front of the Cultural Centre, with parking spaces available nearby. After collecting their equipment and checking in with the organiser, the walkers will take a dedicated bus to the first checkpoint of the walk.

The following wineries await Pinkert, Kovač, Kolar, Horvat, Gerštmajer, Svijetli dvori, Zlatno Brdo, Kalazić, Josić, Szabo, and Kusić. Providing Baranja snacks for the energy: Kovač Čarda restaurant, the Oaza Mira vacation house, the association Tako je to nekad bilo (That's How it Used to be), Vinarium Borarium, and Kusić cellars.

The start for the groups is according to the following schedule:

Group 1 12:00 p.m
Group 2 12:30 p.m
Group 3 1:00 p.m
Group 4 1:00 p.m

In addition to the beautiful landscape and top-quality food and drinks, during this adventure to the wine capitals of Baranja, walkers will be welcomed with song, music, and dance by the local artists.

The end of the walk does not mean the end of fun! At the end of the trail, the start of the Advent afterparty awaits in the "Catholic surduk" in Zmajevac.

A Christmas fair with mulled wine, lights, a rich music program, and a special experience of Zmajevac surduk awaits everyone on 10 December at the Winter Wine & Walk.

APPLICATIONS can be submitted by filling out the form HERE.

Registration fee: HRK 300.00 / €39.82

Registration fee includes: wine glass, winter cap, map, a voucher for wine tasting at 12 locations + 5 gastronomic locations, tourist guide, and bus transportation (Zmajevac-Suza)

Payments are made no later than Monday, December 5, 2022. towards:

Baranja Tourist Board

Kralja Tomislava 70, Beli Manastir

Description: Registration fee for Winter Wine & walk

IBAN: HR32 2340 0091 1108 3919 1

Info: Baranja Tourist Board, tel. 031/702080 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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

Wednesday, 2 November 2022

Strong Tourist Season in Baranja, More in Store for the Winter

November 2, 2022 - As early as in mid-September, the number of overnight stays in Baranja was equal to the total number of overnight stays achieved in 2019, which means that the record has already been exceeded.

Glas Slavonije reported on the positive trend which this eastern Croatian region has been enjoying. "Judging by the inquiries and planned events, we are expecting a great tourist year", said Matej Perkušić, director of the Baranja Tourist Board, stressing that it is obvious that, above all, domestic guests have acquired a new habit, "to travel and spend nights within Croatia, including Baranja."

He reminds that there is no season or postseason on the "continent", which is confirmed by the numerous visitors to several events in Slavonia-Baranja during the past months. Željka Bagarić-Dumančić from the Baranja Tourist Board claims that guests will have a reason to come to Baranja (but also a bit more).

"Let's start with the events included in the celebration of the Day of Beli Manastir, Martinje. Among the whole series of different and interesting month-long events organised by the City, Beli Manastir associations and institutions, I single out the preparation of traditional Baranja fish dishes, which will be held on November 5 in the Hungarian House of MKU Pelmonostor. On the very Day of Beli Manastir, a concert by the tambura group Fijaker is planned, and the day after a fair of local products with a rich gastronomic offer", said Bagarić-Dumančić.

DSC01817.JPG

Steve Tsentserensky

Many guests will also be attracted by the traditional Karanac Winter Fair and Čvarak Fest on November 26 at the Karanac Field, organised by the Association of Keepers of Old Crafts (Udruga čuvara starih zanata), with the help of Baranjska Kuća and Baranja Tourist Board. This year too, visitors will be welcomed by numerous stands, a rich gastronomic offer and interesting content. This year's novelty is the winter Wine & Walk. So far, only the summer one has been held, and due to numerous inquiries from the participants, the local tourist board, in cooperation with the Baranja Winegrowers Association, decided to organise one during the colder part of the year as well. It will be held on December 10.

DSC01868.JPG

Steve Tsentserensky

"We expect between 200 and 300 participants. On the nine-kilometer-long trail through Suza and Zmajevac, the famous wine meccas of Baranja, participants will be welcomed at numerous locations by Baranja winemakers and restaurants with top-quality wines and snacks. We will provide the walkers with a map, a wine glass and a winter hat, and the participants will need to make sure they wear comfortable clothes and shoes and a good mood", explains Bagarić-Dumančić, adding that the wineries Pinkert, Kovač, Kolar, Horvat, Gerštmajer, Svijetli dvori, Zlatno brdo, Kalazić, Josić, Szabo and Kusić will be waiting for the walkers. The energy will be taken care of (also) by the Kovač Čarda restaurant, the Oaza Mira vacation house, the "Tako je to nekad bilo" (As It Once Was) association, the Borarium Vinarium, and the Kusić cellars. The registration fee is HRK 300. The afterparty is in Katolički Surduk. Finally, let us not forget the Baranja Advent (Christmas markets) in Kneževi Vinogradi and Beli Manastir.

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

Tuesday, 30 August 2022

:BRUT - Baranja Rural Trail Cycling Event in Slavonija and Baranja

August 30, 2022 - At the junction of Slavonia and Srijem, through vineyards and hills, forests and plains, through museums and monuments, where the Danube kisses the sky, on September 3, a new BRUTAL bicycle race is coming. After a successful race in Beli Manastir, in Baranja, BRUT arrives in Vukovar. It is a 25 or 50 km race through vineyards, fields, forests, and unpaved roads.

In addition to the race itself, on September 1 and 2, we can expect a bicycle tour of the Bata-Borovo industrial heritage as well as street art murals as part of the VukovArt program, a tourist tour around Vukovar, a children's race and a traffic safety workshop, and of course, evening entertainment programs on the 2nd and on the 3rd day of the event.

The full program, as presented on the official website of :BRUT, will look like this:

September 1, 2022 :BRUT Murali starting at 16:00 - 18:00 tour of the city of Vukovar and murals on buildings by bike.

September 2, 2022 :BRUT

Small children's races starting at 10:00 and duration until 12:00, city center Vukovar.
Preschool kids, 100m races.

Traffic safety - joint action with the Ministry of Interior and PD Vukovar.

September 2, 2022 :BRUT Sights starting at 16:00 a tour of the sights in the city of Vukovar – a tourist tour by bike and then a gathering in the bar "Vukovarsko naj".

September3, 2022 :BRUT Vukovar  

:BRUT Vukovar 2022 race route map

:BRUT official race map

Start of the race on September 3, 2022 at 16:00h (registration of participants from 14:00h)
Start - zone target: Salaš Goldschmidt (on the road between Vukovar and Sotin)
Length 25 km and 50 km (choice of route on the trail)
The path is circular in shape. Cyclists ride 1 lap in the 25km race and 2 laps in the 50km race.
The time limit (time-cut) is 3:00h (until 19:00h), and everyone who does not complete one lap in 80 minutes will not be able to go to another and will be counted time for :BRUT Vukovar 25.

After the race, lunch and drinks are provided for all participants and :BRUT Chill with a DJ, fun and socializing. 

For an awesome weekend of walking, cycling, and enjoying the sights and events, we encourage you to apply here (participation includes the start package, meal and drink, and guaranteed entertainment).

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

Tuesday, 30 August 2022

Croatia Airlines Serves Slavonian Snack to Promote Destination

August 30, 2022 - 600,000 passengers on many routes, from Zagreb to destinations around the world, will see and taste the Slavonian snack.

As SiB writes, the Osijek-Baranja County Tourist Board, Croatian Tourist Board, and Croatia Airlines are from August 1 to November 30, 2022, implementing the joint promotional project "Tastes of Slavonia". Passengers on all flights of the Croatian national airline are served a Slavonian meal, which represents a special experience, and at the same time promotes Osijek-Baranja County as a tourist destination, as well as the gastronomy of Slavonia, Baranja, and Srijem. This way, more than 600,000 passengers on 10,000 flights to 30 international and domestic destinations can taste Slavonian delicacies, and thus destinations.

On this occasion, yesterday (August 29, 2022), a press conference was held at Osijek Airport, where the director of Osijek Airport Ivan Kos, director of the Osijek-Baranja County Tourist Board Ivana Jurić, director of commercial affairs of Croatia Airlines Slaven Žabo, Osijek Deputy Mayor Dragan Vulin, and Osijek-Baranja County Prefect Ivan Anušić spoke about the project "Tastes of Slavonia".

The Director of Osijek Airport, Ivan Kos, initially thanked Croatia Airlines for the partnership on the "Tastes of Slavonia" project and expressed his belief that Slavonia and Baranja will be presented to passengers on all lines through this unique project.

"The products of Slavonia and Baranja in the air through the Tastes of Slavonia project in cooperation with the Croatian Tourist Board and Croatia Airlines will last four months. It is a project that invites you to visit the destination through the flavours, because good food is one of the first associations with Slavonia and Baranja, with Osijek-Baranja County as the largest tourist county in the east of Croatia. This confirms once again that the east means hedonism, which means a lot of good food and drink, as well as the events that the destination offers. We are happy that we are promoting the destination not only on domestic but also on international flights, and we continue our good cooperation with Osijek Airport, Osijek-Baranja County, the City of Osijek and the Croatian Tourist Board," said the director of Osijek-Baranja County Tourist Board Ivana Jurić.

She explained that "Slavonian snack" is part of the "Croatia full of flavour" platform as a project of the Croatian Tourist Board, and that the package distributed to passengers includes crackers based on corn and red pepper, which are associated with Baranja, its fish stew, and other flavours that we find in dried meat products, followed by čvarak spread, kulen (spicy sausage), pickled vegetables and a contemporary interpretation of the Slavonian Šapice as a dessert. There are different package sizes, from the crackers handed out on shorter domestic flights to the full package given to passengers on longer international flights.

slavonian_snack_obž.JPG

Osijek-Baranja County

The Director of Commercial Affairs of Croatia Airlines, Slaven Žabo, pointed out that through this joint project, which is based on the wider project of the Croatian Tourist Board (Croatia, Full of Flavours), a range of products/meals for flights was put together that actually represent traditional Slavonian specialties, spices, and other products of this region.

"This joint project is the crown of cooperation between Croatia Airlines, the Tourist Board of Osijek-Baranja County, the City of Osijek, the Croatian Tourist Board, and Osijek Airport, through which we established an international Osijek-Munich route that operates all year round. Its added value, apart from enriching Croatia Airlines’ offer on its flights, is that we have also created the preconditions for the promotion of the specialties of this region," said Slaven Žabo.

The Deputy Mayor of Osijek, Dragan Vulin, expressed his satisfaction that, as he said, the best possible flavors will be available to all passengers on Croatia Airlines flights and will thus contribute to the branding of the food from this area. He pointed out that compared to last year, the City of Osijek now records 55 percent more arrivals and 28 percent more overnight stays of tourists, and in August (until August 25) the record from August last year was exceeded.

"Through the project "Slavonian snack" we can see the continuation of the activities for the promotion of Slavonia and Baranja that we announced and started several years ago. We are still doing this together with Croatia Airlines, our Tourist Board, the Croatian Tourist Board, and the City of Osijek. We are glad that around 600,000 passengers on many routes, from Zagreb to destinations around the world, will see and taste the Slavonian snack, and it is precisely our goal to increase the visibility and quality of our service and offer", said Prefect Ivan Anušić. He added that the results of tourist visits in Osijek-Baranja County this year are better than the record year of 2019 and that the County wants to remain the leader in the development of continental tourism in Croatia, so it continues to strengthen tourism and the economy in all segments.

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

Monday, 29 August 2022

Baranja Paprika Harvest Begins, Customers Must Expect Higher Prices

August the 29th, 2022 - The Baranja paprika harvest has begun! For many, this is an absolute favourite and a ''must buy'' Croatian product, but buyers must expect higher prices.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, the Baranja paprika harvest has started somewhat earlier than usual, and due to the bad weather conditions that accompanied its cultivation, there will be less of it, but fortunately, what has managed to grow is of very good quality.

Due to the increase in production costs, the price of Baranja paprikas will rise significantly, with the price per kilogram now expected to reach up to 180 kuna. A small village which deals with the production of paprika, Lug, has seen many of its residents live on the Baranja paprika harvest for centuries now, according to a report from HRT.

"It's very difficult to find good paprika, you need to put in lot of effort and you do almost everything by hand," said Zuzana Jozef, a local resident who has been dealing with this for many years.

''The drought reduced the amount of crops we got, but thankfully we still do have crops. It won't be anywhere near the amount we managed to get year, but the quality is still very good. Baranja paprikas this year are of very good quality, they're fleshy and they're full of seeds, so I hope our customers will be satisfied anyway,'' said Borivoje Stojanovic.

The only thing is that its price will have to increase, but true fans of Baranja paprikas will certainly continue to buy it regardless.

"Everything went wrong, including with the raw materials, and we probably irrigated it twice as much as usual for it to succeed," added Jozef.

Those who love and use Baranja paprikas for various reasons in their food know just how important watering is for these crops, and the fact that there has been a drought could have spelled disaster very easily. Regardless of whether it is sweet or hot pepper that customerd want, there can be no top specialties, especially at this time of the year, without them.

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

Wednesday, 24 August 2022

Eventful September in Baranja - Over 15,000 Visitors Expected

August 24, 2022 - The Biggest Croatian Fish Stew Day, Fishing Days, Wine Marathon, and World Fishing Championship. September in Baranja looks eventful. Over 15,000 visitors are expected.

As Glas Slavonije writes, since the beginning of the year, more than 13,000 tourists visited Baranja, accounting for approximately 23,000 overnight stays.

The results are significantly better than last year, reaching the level of the record 2019. A real tidal wave of arrivals and overnight stays is expected during September when several events will be held in Baranja that have recently become famous outside of the county borders.

“Judging by the announcements, we expect about 15,000 visitors at the September events alone, mostly domestic, but with a respectable number of foreign visitors as well”, said Matej Perkušić, director of the Baranja Tourist Board, stressing that this should be felt in the occupancy of accommodation capacities throughout Baranja, but also in Osijek and its surroundings. It all starts with the Biggest Croatian Fish Stew Festival, which will take place in Beli Manastir on September 3. It is a "two in one" competition - the Croatian Championship, for the winners of the Slavonia-Baranja competition, and the amateur championship, for everyone else. In total, more than 200 chefs are expected.

“About 70 amateur chefs have applied so far, and we expect the majority of applications a day or two before the deadline, which is in less than a week”, said Perkušić. Along with several interesting games, the bands TS Žeteoci and Magazin will be in charge of entertainment.

The middle of September is reserved for another established Baranja event, Fishing Days in Kopačevo. Ten thousand visitors were there last year, and as many are expected this year as well.

“Last year, because of the pandemic, we decided that Fishing Days would be a three-day event, and it turned out to be a complete success. Therefore, this year they will be held on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday (September 16 - 18)”, said Željko Cickaj, mayor of Bilje Municipality, pointing out that visitors can expect between four and five tons of fish, to which the "gastro programs" must be added, organised alongside with the central part. In addition to local delicacies, guests will also be able to enjoy a cultural and entertainment program. On Friday, after the official opening, the band Gazde will play, followed by TS Kvinta in the tent. Saturday is reserved for The Garden, klapa Rišpet, and TS Nesanica (in the tent), and on Sunday there will be a traditional fish stew cook-off, several traditional music, and dance ensembles, and TS Sitan Vez will perform.

“Although this year there is a problem with acquiring the needed quantities, the members of the hunting club from Kopačevo started their preparations on time, so there will be enough fish” Cickaj pointed out.

And on the last weekend of September (Friday and Saturday), all roads will lead to Zmajevac, to its mountain paths and wine cellars.

“We expect that approximately 2,500 marathoners will “run” the marathon this year, possibly more. Applications started back in February. For example, the team from Hungary that participated in the marathon last year had six members. This year, they expanded the team to 73 members, for both days” on behalf of the organizer, the Surduk Association, said Kristijan Horvat. This year, the partner countries will be Hungary and North Macedonia. An interesting entertainment program awaits visitors. Although the dice are still “coming together”, Frajle, Hungarian violinist Nyari Bernardett, and Macedonian artist Tijana Dabčević will perform together on Friday. The arrival of Tamara Tadevska, who defended the Macedonian colours at the Eurovision Song Contest, is also planned. Concerts on two stages are planned for Saturday.

How good is your knowledge of eastern Croatia? Take the CROMADS test above - how many places do you recognise?

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

Wednesday, 17 August 2022

Darija Walter of PLANTaža on Art Project Urban Intervention Osijek

August 17, 2022 - A wonderful artistic intervention has just dawned in the city of Osijek. It put the spotlight on the historical beauty of cities. A tram stop that dates to 1926 was refurbished by the famous street artist Lonac, under the Urban Intervention project headed by Darija Walter.

Darija is a woman changing things at the local level, to stimulate change on a global level. In recent years, life in Croatia has focused more and more on the capital, while the rest remains neglected, uninhabited, and without events and plans. Darija operates through the association PLANTaža. She also works on a series of projects that truly change Osijek, and not only Osijek but contribute to the entire community. Journal spoke with Daria about all the current and upcoming plans that, little by little, bring life to where it should have always been.

298401491_5346929682058899_5412929183373276338_n.jpg

Darija Walter on her beginnings, art…

You have now been in the PLANTaža association for eight years, how do you see those years, compared to the time before you became part of it, how much has it changed your life?

I have been working with the PLANTaža Association since the very beginning of the association's work when an enthusiastic group of people gathered who wanted to start some new stories in Osijek. Today, eight years later, I realize how much the association has influenced my life. It gave me a new opportunity that I was not aware of before and thus determined my path. I have always known that I wanted to do work that has a direct impact on solving problems in the community, offers sustainable and meaningful solutions, and involves all age groups. It never crossed my mind that I would do that in the city I love so much. The city I wanted to leave eight years ago because I didn't see any prospects.

"It would be nice to write about Slavonia in an optimistic tone"

How much, in your opinion, does investment and contribution to a city, especially not the capital of Croatia, mean, on a larger level, while most investments are oriented specifically towards Zagreb or the south of the country?

Like any other area, the city of Osijek could use investment, especially in the field of creating new jobs. Although we do not stand side by side with the big companies, the association is an employer that, through EU funds, offers the opportunity for employment and first work experiences. We are not the only ones there. We cooperate with a whole range of associations that operate in Osijek and continue to develop their stories despite numerous obstacles. Croatia does not only consist of Zagreb. It is precisely for this reason that equal investment should be encouraged so that other parts of the country can also expect development.

279493058_5070284056390131_8983070193340849678_n.jpg

In addition, it would be nice if Slavonia and Baranja were written about in an optimistic tone, and not just about mass emigration. Although unfortunately many have sought their happiness outside this region, life has not disappeared. Changes are happening, people are trying, and a lot is happening regardless of all the challenges that stand in the way of success in this ungrateful environment of ours.

"Only through our involvement can we influence changes"

What is your motivation for projects? This is now your lifestyle, not just an occupation.

Working in an association becomes a way of life, whether I want to admit it or not. Classic working hours do not exist. Vacations have become an invisible concept to me because most of the activities are carried out during the summer. My office is wherever I can connect to the Internet. My motivation is to influence change, however small it may be. Only this way can we contribute to the creation of some new, sustainable and healthy habits that can only further enrich our lives. Only through our engagement can we directly affect changes in our community – which in the long term affects the understanding of the kind of society we leave to our descendants as an inheritance.

276286307_4960282637390274_4955288305166906089_n.jpg

Reconstruction of the oldest tram stop

You have just presented an art installation within the oldest tram stop in Osijek through the Urban Intervention project, can you tell us more about it?

The Urban Intervention project is being implemented for the fourth year in a row to present artistic illustrations within the oldest tram stop in Osijek, which dates back to 1926. The station was neglected for many years and left to wait for better days. This is exactly why, with the support of donors and the Conservation Department in Osijek, we decided to restore the glass surface and give it a new purpose.

296054834_5339408366144364_6986887921017241724_n.jpg

We desire to return the stop to its original state, refurbish the entire surface, and with the support of the City, restorers, and the Conservation Department in Osijek, make it a real small gallery space, unique in Croatia. Until that happens, we will continue to present new artistic illustrations to further promote urban culture and new artistic practices. This year we presented an artistic illustration signed by the famous Croatian street artist Lonac. So far, Slađana Zubić, Tea Jurišić, and Vedran Klemens have introduced themselves to the Osijek audience.

Project Urbani Osijek

The Urbani Osijek project connects urban culture through the tourist offer of the city. How much did it contribute to the tourist image of Osijek?

guiderica.png

The Urbani Osijek project was created last year by the secretary of the association, Vedran Grizbaher. The project itself includes the promotion of urban culture through a touristic approach and contains a whole series of creative activities such as cycle-urban routes, concept lectures I Travel Solo in which female travelers are presented. There is also an urban guide to Osijek, which was created as a desire to present the contents of Osijek in one place in an illustrated version beautifully painted by Yellow Yuri. The project gave birth to creative solutions and original tourist products, such as the already mentioned urban guide, which we plan to promote even further.

The first art workshop

You are preparing the first art workshop "Vibration of Art" soon, whose theme will be Nikola Tesla. Can you tell us more about that?

The Vibration of Art is a project whose activities we are very much looking forward to. Our first activity will start soon at the Slama Land Art Festival, which has been organized by the Slama association for more than 15 years. This year the theme is Nikola Tesla. In accordance with that, we will hold a land art workshop and a Tesla transformer workshop under the expert guidance of Nikola Faller. The project itself also includes informal theater dance workshops led by Mira Sekereš from Shine Dance Studio, panel discussions, and poetry evenings.

What is she looking forward to?

Do you spend the whole summer working and what are you looking forward to in the autumn?

This year is unique for several reasons, so the whole summer has been busy for me. I will take a short break in September, and until then I will continue in the same rhythm. In the autumn, I will be working on the PLANTida ecologically sustainable festival and a whole series of new things that have yet to come. In any case, I'm happy with this busy creativity, I enjoy the process of learning and tinkering, and as long as it's like that, it doesn't need to be any other way!

299998635_5372074222877778_6332858032739612629_n.jpg

All photos by Udruga PLANTaža

Osijek is the regional centre of Slavonia and Baranja, and much like the rest of eastern Croatia, it is indeed full of life. Why aren't you here?

How good is your knowledge of eastern Croatia anyway? Take the CROMADS test above - how many places do you recognise?

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

Page 1 of 10

Search