Wednesday, 11 August 2021

Croatian Beach vs Pool Dilemma: Arguments For Both Sides Overview

August 11, 2021 - Looking at the broad offer of swimming options on Adriatic, you may find yourself in the middle of a Croatian beach vs pool dilemma. TCN reporter Ivor Kruljac found pros for both sides.

With exciting history, heritage, and interesting experiences to be had, coastal Croatia and the Croatian islands known how to sell what they've got. The clear, refreshing, and clean sea has been the most valuable arsenal in Croatia's tourist offer from the very start.

In that spirit, it may seem unusual to see many hotels with glorious sea views and short walks to beaches that have pools, both indoors and outdoors. Sure, the indoor pools are great if you have the misfortunate of some bad weather when you're dying for a swim, but do outdoor pools really make sense next to the lovely Adriatic?

Well, both sides of this argument have valid points. Here is a shortlist of the cases when one dominates over the other in this epic Croatian beach vs pool debate.

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Looking for safe fun? Then the pool wins

With Croats enjoying the reputation of being ready to help and watching over others, and even with some of the beaches having lifeguards, pools are definitely the safer option if swimming isn't your strong side. The majority of pools have a shallow and deeper end, and while the sea can suddenly become deeper than you what you've bargained for, the transition is much easier in the pool.

If you do get cramp or get in some sort of trouble, even if other swimmers don't respond, you can be sure that hotel staff will pull you out just in time. The rules of conduct (which you have to oblige to) ensure your safety and that of the other guests. The limits of a pool can make it easier for you to watch over your kids while they have safe aquatic fun. In addition, sea urchins or painful rocks on which you can hit yourself while entering the Adriatic, as well as small pebbles that can be annoying on the soles of your feet, aren't an issue in a controlled pool environment. sea_vic_1.jpg

Looking for space? Then a Croatian beach will win

If you feel claustrophobic in the small and typically confined limits of the pool, then a Croatian beach is the best place to go for a longer swim. With experienced swimmers being able to swim from one side of the pool over the other, the sea provides a better challenge in terms of routes and directions you can take. Additionally, pools can be quite crowded, and if you want to take a refreshing dip as some ''zen'' time for yourself, then chilling in the Adriatic can be done at a more considerable distance from others that came to enjoy the day.

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Do you fancy a space reserved just for you? Head to the pool

We all know that moment of frustration when a beach is crowded like hell, and you just can't find a place to leave your towel for the life of you. As pools are limited to the guests of the hotel, you can rest assured that when you arrive poolside, you'll manage to be able to find a place to soak up the sun and get a nice tan after you're done with swimming as the hotel calculates the maximum number of people that they can accommodate at any one time (at least the good hotels do).

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 Broadening your circle of friendship? Then a Croatian beach wins

With the Croatian hotel scene being more and more frequently branded to attract certain clientele, those who are interested in meeting new people on holiday, can expect that other guests in the hotel are similar to them in terms of interest and lifestyle. That's great, but keep in mind that other guests may just be interested in chilling, eating, and sleeping in the hotel, and not really socialising. On the other hand, the world of the Croatian beach is much more dynamic and with long history of interesting real and fictional stories (in books and movies) about awesome friendships and passionate relationships which started with an exchanged glance at the beach; the beach is the place to meet new people.

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Want to be content with the water? The pool wins

When it comes to the Croatian beach offer, there are many types to choose from. Some beaches don't only offer unhindered access to the beautiful Adriatic as their lure but also much more, such as flotation devices to waterslides, sunbeds, and more. That said, certain pools also have more content than another. But, as a guest of the hotel, you can use everything that has been included in the price of your stay, while beaches (in the majority of cases at least) charge extra for these additional features. croatian-beach-683035_1280.jpg

pixabay

Do you want to experience nature at its finest? Then the beach wins

With pools being man-made, they lack the joy of coming across unexpected discoveries which is what the sea offers. From pebbles to seaweed or sand underneath you to fish and other marine life sharing the swim with you, your experience in the Adriatic isn't just an opportunity to relax and freshen up but also to connect closely with nature. When a wave comes, those who are more in the market for excitement will surely have their blood pumping that bit harders as they are carried by the waves. You can also lie on the beach and enjoy the zen the sound of calm waves brings free of charge.

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If proximity is what you're after, then the pool wins

When you're searching for a hotel, you probably want the one which is as close as possible to a beautiful Croatian beach. However, if you're a bit of out shape (with no desire to really improve that), and you learn that the promised three-minute walk to the beach lasts up to seven minutes or more at your pace and you just don't feel like walking that much as the heat is draining the life out of you, then the pools are right there inside the hotel complex. The only way to dive in for some aquatic refreshment faster is to take a shower in the hotel room, but really, where is the fun in that?

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Viva la anarchia! – The beach wins

As mentioned above, pools are safer, not just because of their size and safe terrain, but also because of the rules they have. That said, if you've arrived at your destination listening to the greatest Sex Pistols hits and that little anarchist in you ready to get wild, head over to the beach to learn a whole new meaning of freedom. Swim where you want, jump from wherever you want (at your own risk, of course), and as long as you don't pollute the sea, pose a threat to other people or endanger the native marine life, where your sense of creativity ends is your only limit. Swim any time you want. You don't have to take a shower before diving in, and as many Croats will whisper to you in a clandestine manner when nobody is listening: you're free to pee in the sea if you need to.

The Croatian coast has you covered - the choice is yours

These are some of the arguments to help you decide would you prefer to be by the pool or next to a Croatian beach. Since the Croatian coast can offer both salty and freshwater options for your enjoyable holiday, it's best to try out both.

Learn more about beaches in Croatia on our TC page.

For more about the Croatian Adriatic Sea, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Saturday, 26 June 2021

1574 Croatian Facilities Claim to Have "Private Beaches"

June the 26th, 2021 - It's well known that the waters can get murky in Croatia when it comes to construction, permits and concessions, and as many as 1574 Croatian facilities claim to boast ''private beaches''.

As Morski writes, the very rightly raised voices in the public about one arrogant man from Drvenik Veli who sold the story to his guests from the Czech Republic that he has a private beach - still aren't subsiding. There can be no notion of a private beach in Croatia, so the nerve of those owners of various Croatian facilities claiming they boast one is quite incredible indeed.

That being said, it is obvious that he's far from the only one who understands that the beach in front of his house is a private one. Namely, it isn't foreign to Croats to attach the option to have a private beach when reserving a property they own and rent out to tourists on the likes of Booking.com, writes Index.

One single little cursory glance at this famous platform for online accommodation reservation shows that Croatian facilities often register a private beach with their listings. So, when the accommodation units are sorted on the Booking.com page specifically according to the term "private beach" - a fascinating number of 1574 Croatian facilities comes out.

It's worth mentioning that the text description written next to some facilities doesn't specifically state that they have a private beach, although the facilities are sorted by this parameter, but some explicitly advertise that they truly do have a private beach, and they mention the term private beach with restaurants, parking or free WiFi.

As it already goes on sites and platforms like this, the overall figure should be taken with a grain of salt, but to think that so many owners of Croatian facilities are so ready to lie so easily about something they simply cannot possible have to naive foreign tourists is quite astonishing.

However, we don't need Booking.com to conclude that, it's enough to have a wander along the coast and see that there are houses by the sea whose owners have built some stairs, so they think that the whole beach belongs to them.

Let us also recall the words of maritime property expert Goran Vojkovic, who wrote an article for Index about the recent ''private beach'' situation in Drvenik Veli.

The sea shore isn't under any sort of ownership and you're free to use it for common purposes. Swimming, sunbathing, swimming, fishing from the shore, whatever you want,'' read his words on the matter.

“Now, of course, the question arises - can someone have a concession for a beach and have that beach for the exclusive use of their camp or hotel (or charge an entrance fee). In principle, yes they can. However, such a concession must be listed in the public register - that list is available at http://servisi.fina.hr/regkonc/index.do (or you can just Google the " [Croatian] concession register").

However, there are very few such concessions for beaches in Croatia. The complete exclusion of general use costs quite a bit of money and most of the even the most notorious hotels have concluded that they won't bother to ask for concessions - they'd rather let everyone interested use it and make money in another way, by offering drinks or additional facilities. In any case, if someone claims to have a concession and as such you can only use a part of the coast - you need to have proof of this and you can also check for yourself. We repeat, there are very few of them, even the beaches in front of five-star hotels are usually public beaches,'' explained Vojkovic.

As for Booking.com, let's say that out of the total number of 1574 Croatian facilities with a so-called ''private beach'', 886 of them refer to apartments, and 95 are hotels. The rest refer to tourist resorts, camps, cottages or villas.

For more, follow our business section.

Friday, 25 June 2021

Maritime Welfare in Croatia: Drvenik Case and What Law Says

June 25, 2021 - The issue of maritime welfare in Croatia was raised once again after a heated discussion on a beach in Drvenik Veli. Here are the details of the case and legal guidance to the maritime welfare in Croatia.

With the 2021 tourist season already being 58% better than 2020, tourists once again visit Croatia as one of the top holiday destinations.

However, like any year, the season can't go without at least some sort of incident.

Lovely beach, disgusting words

Yesterday, Croatia was shocked and enraged with the incident that happened on a beach on Drvenik Veli island (not so far from Trogir). Croatian journalist Tonka Alujević and her friend went to a beach where two Czech tourists started complaining that it's a private beach, perks of paying for a villa, and that Alujević needs to leave. Alujević refused to leave, stating that beaches are maritime welfare and cannot be privatized, refusing to move. After, as Alujević claims Czech tourists hit her head with a phone, they called the villa owner. 24 Sata daily newspaper published a video Alujević's friend recorded.

„Ma'ams, Ma'ams, how did you get here? On foot?“, asked the owner on a phone that was on speaker and held by the Czech tourists.

„I'm a journalist. Do you know Croatian laws? Do you want to end up in media?“ replied Alujević with a chill face while smoking a cigarette on a sunny day at the beach.

„Come on, put me in the media, come on put me! But first, go to the land register and see that my beach is private," screamed the owner in Croatian, with a lot of derogatory phrases (if only Czech tourists had a translator to understand the rich swear word heritage of Croatian language, right?)

The whole thing ended up with inspection stepping on the scene. Despite the video footage being clear, the owner, identified by Index.hr as Tomislav Meštrović, owner of Centovi Dvori Villa, tried to justify himself, saying everyone is welcomed at the beach, and he attacked the women because they passed through his doorway.

„No, I have no idea what video, who what... who knows what that is... I called the police for trespassing through my land“, said Meštrović to Index.hr when asked about the footage.

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the conversation at the beach, screenshot/ 24sata

Law and order

Following this story, Index.hr's columnist Goran Vojković analyzed the law to clear up the issue of maritime welfare.

„The Maritime Welfare and Sea Ports Law states 'at least six meters from a line horizontally distant from the line middle waters'. But it can be wider, for example, if part of the land that in its nature or use serves to exploit the sea. It can also be narrowed- for instance, if support walls or a public road are close to the sea“, Vojković listed general rules but adding that maritime welfare border is specifically determined.

„So, the coast is free to use where the beach is, in general, six meters. You can come and use it for your needs, such as bathing, tanning, or walking. The land behind can be private, but the coast cannot“, concluded Vojković.

On the other hand, there are ways to limit the use of maritime welfare.

„There are some parts of the coast where you cannot enter. You can enter the marina and walk around it, but only until 10 pm. You cannot enter at all in a shipyard port. Those are the parts of maritime welfare for which the state assigned a concession to someone. The concession can limit or terminate public use“, explained Vojković.

Additionally, the law states that it is possible to have a beach in its concession and limit public entrance. But it needs to be registered, and the prices are so expensive that there are very few beaches like this in Croatia (Drvenik one not included in that small list).

„If someone claims that has a concession and that he/she can exclusively use some part of the coast, he needs to have a proof you can easily check in the register. I repeat, there are very small examples; even beaches in front of five-star hotels are public good“, Vojković pointed out.

And such beaches are filled with deck chairs, food stands, etc. But as Vojković pointed out, on a public beach, you have the right to bring your own deck chair, your own food, and drinks, and you can't be forced to consume content on the beach.

„In short, enjoy the Adriatic coast- with some very small exceptions of exclusive concessions, the entire coastline (including island coast) is free for your use and joy. Nobody can hold a grudge or complain if you came to a bath where they think it's 'their' beach. If someone is uncomfortable, don't debate, call authorities“, advises Vojković.

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Pixabay

And the beach is open for public happily ever after

As Jutarnji List reported, the Drvenik case has a conclusion to an intriguing plot. Unhappy with Meštrović's behavior, Dalmatian locals went vigilantly and started writing bad reviews on Google, seeing the villa losing its value and tourists.

„Even though neither the building, nor its surroundings changed since the video was released, the unkindness of the owner was enough to move once-prestigious villa to the lowest grading Croatian places on Google“, says Jutarnji.

A couple of more lessons can be learned for a successful and enjoyable season from this tale.

For owners: present your offer fair in accordance with the law as transparency is the best way for your offer to beat the competition.
For tourists: if you were promised a private beach, but you see locals coming, don't be rude to them and don't attack them. The only one you can really be mad at is your host, who perhaps lied about what they can truly provide.

Learn more about beaches in Croatia on our TC page.

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

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Excellent Bathing Water Quality at Most Beaches in Dalmatia

Summer might be over, but that doesn't mean we've stopped caring about the Adriatic's most popular natural treasure: beaches.

Sunday, 27 August 2017

Lonely Planet Picks Out Croatia’s 10 Best Beaches

Popular travel magazine Lonely Planet has recently published a list of ten best beaches in Croatia.

Friday, 4 August 2017

No More 'Beach Booking' in Punat: Meet the Lost Treasure Chest

Local authorities all over the coast are starting to wage war against 'beach booking'.

Monday, 17 July 2017

Woman Turned Away from Beach in Trogir, Concessionaire Offers Explanation

After the Parliament adopted the Law on Concessions a couple of weeks ago, multiple cases of concession holders banning locals from beaches have been reported. The latest comes from Dalmatia, where a woman named Barbara Buličić was asked to leave the beach at the Brown Beach House Trogir on Čiovo island on July 16, 2017.

Tuesday, 11 July 2017

Put Your Phone Away and Grab a Book: Beach Libraries Opening on Ugljan Island

Even though the primary purpose of a vacation is to relax and forget about your usual daily routine, we still hold on to our smartphones in bars and on beaches. We like to keep tabs on what other people are doing on their holidays, we check our e-mails... it's hard to force yourself to get off the grid these days.

Here's an idea: how about you start small? Put your phone on airplane mode for an hour or two and relax with a book. Small paperbacks in multiple languages are available in all bookstores and on most newsstands in Croatia, and if you're more the digital type, an e-reader won't take up a lot of space in your beach bag. If by any chance you end up on Ugljan island this summer, even better: from July 15 to September 15, everyone who visits Kali town on Ugljan will have a chance to check-out books for free from the first beach library in Croatia.

The Public Library Kali came up with a wonderful project a couple of months ago. Called 'Sve (knjige) ćeš na siki nuajti' (local dialect for 'you'll find all the books on the reef'), the beach libraries are devised as three wooden structures shaped like lifeguard towers that will be installed on the beaches of Batalaža, Mul and Luka. Shelves packed with books will be within the reach of all beach-goers free of charge, and will be available to check out between 8 AM and 8 PM.

Local librarian Marta Kolega said she hopes both Kali residents and tourists will like the project. Little beach libraries will be filled with summer literature, mostly crime and romance novels, books for children, but you'll also find an occasional classic if you're the type that likes to enjoy something more serious even on vacation.

"Apart from enjoying the written word, the project aims to prolong the lives of books, as all the novels we plan to offer in small beach libraries, and there are 320, were written off from the Public Library Kali, meaning they were headed for the waste paper bins. We decided to give them new lives", explained Kolega. As the books were written of from the library fund anyway, the new users will have the options to put the book back on the shelf, keep it if they particularly liked it, or pass it on to friends, relatives and loved ones.

Kali is known as the only town with a library on Ugljan island, while the other inhabited places are visited twice a month by a bibliobus coming from the Zadar City Library.

The beach library project proposal was applied to the donation contest Kajo Dadić called 'Our Contribution to the Community', and had Jakov Kolega doing the 3D model of the library in its planned environment. Sadly, the project wasn't adopted as part of the contest, but the young book enthusiasts on Kali couldn't be discouraged that easily. They're the living proof it only takes a bit of courage and a lot of good will to make a great idea come to life!

Beach libraries are already a well-known concept world-wide. The popular beach La Romaniquette near Marseille in southern France is known for a library that has three sheltered spots for reading, and a beach at the Albena resort on the coast of Black Sea in Bulgaria has a beach library with 6000 books in 15 languages.

Congratulations to the team from Kali – here's hoping the concept spreads all over the coast by next year!

Source: Morski.hr

Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Dubrovnik's Perfect Escapes: Veliki Zali Beach

Continuing our look at some of the beautiful villages and townships close to the City of Dubrovnik, let's look at neither a town or a village, but somewhere that rivals them both. A beach.

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