Monday, 5 July 2021

Digital Nomads On-Board – Top 4 Must Haves for an Amazing Remote Working Holiday on a Yacht

July 5, 2021 - It seems like the perfect Instagram shot. Stretched out on the deck of a beautiful sailing yacht, the stunning Croatian islands and the Adriatic Sea in the background and a snazzy laptop laid out on the lounging cushions.

The Digital Nomad dream, right?! YES!

And, you’re not alone if you think so. There is an ever-increasing number of digital nomads, taking their laptops and heading out onto the seas for that get-away from it all, creating a remote working holiday like no other. Yet does the reality and the dream match?

Maybe for a moment. AND the reality of it all may be a little bit different, especially if you aren’t clear on what you need on board and why it’s important. 

Not All Are Created Equal

So, here’s what we mean by that. Just like not all Airbnb’s a created equal. Not all yachts are created equal. And just as the most seasoned digital nomads will have a carefully crafted list for what they need in an Airbnb. Jumping on-board a yacht for an extended period will require the exact same thing, a carefully crafted list to ensure that all you require is supplied or if not, you know about it and there are no nasty surprises.

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Most Common Questions

Does the yacht you are sailing on have an adequate WIFI connection? This is the most commonly asked question one most will answer yes. And yet being on the see in an unknown option to most and the implications of this one question, is a lot broader than a simple yes.

There are three other things that are important to consider on your checklist:

  • How will I keep my devices sufficiently charged?
  • Are there sufficiently comfortable workspaces to sit?
  • Especially in summer, is there shaded space available on board?

As lovely as lounging around on the deck with your laptop looks on Instagram, it doesn’t make for a very comfortable working position for more than ten minutes add to that working with minimum shade or downstairs with no air con and the thrill of a remote working holiday on the sea, can soon wear thin.

So, for anyone considering such an adventure, here are the top four must-haves to ensure your remote working holiday experience on board is amazing!

 

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WIFI

As we said earlier, WIFI is always the first question that comes up in a conversation about working remotely on a boat.

Which makes sense. It’s right there in the title, Digital Nomad. Digital! It’s a tad difficult to be digital if there’s no WIFI connection! And one of the great things about the Dalmatian islands is that the reception for the most part is fantastic.

And there are amazing places you will want to visit, with no reception and that doesn't mean you need to miss out or settle for less. That is why along with WIFI connection, it is important to be sailing with a skipper and/or a crew that understands the importance of being connected.

Because, while there isn’t reception in every nook and cranny, good, ongoing communication amongst everyone on board, will ensure that you can still have the best of both worlds. That is, being able to be in good reception to connect with your clients and complete your commitments online, as well as experiencing some of the incredible hidden treasures that Croatia has to offer tucked in away from the reach of the digital world.

Yes, it will take a bit of juggling which is why it is important to be working alongside the crew on-board who can help you manage this juggle and really work hard to help you get the most out of your time on board without sacrificing any of your work commitments.

TIP ONE: Check WIFI and even more important, choose a skipper and/or crew who truly understands what it means to be a traveling, working Digital Nomad.

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POWER

Another big consideration when you’re thinking about working from a yacht is power. Boats carry their own power, in the form of batteries. Different boats have different capacities to store and hold power, and if the boat is older and ‘well-loved', these batteries can often be working at much less than 100%. Now, this is something that many sailors are totally ok with. Traditionally, going sailing has been about disconnecting and putting away technology in favour of reconnecting with nature, the stars and revelling in the quiet.

And sailing has changed over the years. We now have sailing boats, both monohull and catamarans, that have increased power bank capacities, enabling those of us who need to, to stay connected to the outside world whilst still enjoying all the beauty and serenity that comes with spending time on a yacht in the Adriatic.

Even for the older boats that aren’t as power-endowed, there are tricks and tips for making sure you can power up when the batteries are low or unreliable. You can choose to pay and dock in a marina or port where you can hook up to shore power. Or your skipper can run the motor if you are at anchor or on a mooring ball to help charge the batteries. Although this does very much lessen the serenity of being anchored or moored in a picturesque Croatian bay!

TIP TWO: Check with your skipper and/or crew the electricity capacity and availability on the yacht you are looking to be on for the week.

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ITINERARY

The itinerary is also something that needs thinking about when you are a working Digital Nomad on board a sea-going vessel. Your work schedule and the work schedule of other Digital Nomads on-board need to be discussed and made known so that the Skipper is aware of what times a strong WIFI connection is imperative, perhaps for a webinar, to dial into a staff meeting or to take a client call.

This information then needs to be juggled with sightseeing, managing any weather systems that may be moving through the area, as well as making sure that everyone is aware of the plan for the week, including how it can so easily change during the week. Plans need to be made to ensure that time is allowed for comfortable working conditions each day.

TIP THREE: Communication and planning is key to smooth sailing and being able to meet the variety of needs of all on board.

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SHADE/AIRCON

The peak of the summer season in Croatia means temperatures of close to 40 degrees in the Mediterranean sun. The sea breeze takes the harshness away from the sun and it’s still important to be extra careful when spending time onboard in the sun, especially during the hottest times of the day. Enquire about the cover and shaded areas on board. Working directly in the sun isn’t that much fun after 10 minutes or so.

And while you will welcome air conditioning like your best friend, note that your air conditioner can only operate while your yacht is connected to external power, or while in the marina. If you are spending the night anchored in an enchanting bay, you’ll need a generator or go air-con-free!

All of these things that we so often take for granted on-land, you need to ask about and feel comfortable with the arrangements right from the start, when booking your remote working holiday.

TIP FOUR: Enquire about the onboard bimini sunshade and other cover provided on your chosen yacht, just to be sure.

 

We hope you find these top 4 must-haves helpful when planning your remote working holiday on the Adriatic.

If you have questions, feel free to ask below in the comments or check out Total Croatia, Sailing in Croatia: Your One-Stop-Shop for everything sailing.

If you’re looking to experience that remote working holiday that keeps you wanting more, find more details here about an amazing Digital Nomad Sailing Week.

For more about Digital Nomads and Travel in Croatia follow TCN's dedicated pages - Digital Nomads | Travel.

Sunday, 23 May 2021

Closing DNiR Conference at Lazareti: Mayor Franković Announces Dubrovnik Digital Nomads Coworking Space

May 22, 2021 - As Dulist reports, the closing conference of 'The Dubrovnik digital nomad-in-residence' project was held this Saturday at Lazareti. At the closing ceremony, Dubrovnik mayor Mato Franković announced a Dubrovnik Digital Nomads coworking space.

As part of the conference, the results of four creative workshops were presented, in which, in addition to digital nomads, representatives of the City of Dubrovnik and the Dubrovnik Tourist Board, as well as citizens, also participated. The goal of these workshops was to make joint recommendations for creating a better environment for digital nomads who will be staying in Dubrovnik. 

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photo credit: Dulist

"We are pleased to conclude the first major conference of digital nomads in Dubrovnik. Digital nomads stayed in the City for a full 30 days and saw it in a different way, not only as a tourist city, but also as a city that has neighbourhoods pleasant to live in, like Mokošica, Lapad, Gruž, and Gornje Selo. They discovered a different Dubrovnik as well as our way of life. This is exactly what we wanted to achieve, to have digital nomads with this experience send a clear message to their colleagues across the world to come to Dubrovnik and stay here for a few months as a place to develop their creative ideas and contribute their practical experiences and knowledge to the Dubrovnik economy. We cannot expect our tourism of the future to rely solely on digital nomads, but I believe they will occupy one significant segment of it. At the same time, we expect some new ideas, products, and reflections of our city," said Mayor Mato Franković on this occasion, announcing that Dubrovnik will soon get a digital nomad coworking space. 

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photo credit: Dulist

"We must not stop here, this is just the beginning. The future brings us coworking spaces of digital nomads, a place where all those who come to Dubrovnik will find all the information they need, a workplace where they can share ideas with all other digital nomads. They are not engaged in just one job, but in different professions and jobs. They love to travel, their work allows them to realize their ideas elsewhere. These are people who are very well paid for the jobs they do, and their company allows them to travel the world because of their creativity. That is the future we will go for. The coworking spac is the next thing we will realize," said Franković keeping the location of the space a secret for now.

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                                                                                                                                                                           photo credit: Dulist

 

Franković emphasized that a digital nomads week, with which he would connect, was being prepared in Zagreb, but also that the goal was to connect all cities in Croatia through the project of digital nomads. (Read more about Zagreb Digital Nomad Week).

"Digital nomads are moving around and if the whole of Croatia is ready for the project of digital nomads, then the wealth of Dubrovnik in that project will be greater. If we are all open and friendly towards them, only the sky is our limit," concluded Franković.

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 photo credit: Dulist

The director of the Dubrovnik Tourist Board, Ana Hrnić, emphasized that at the very end of the project she would have concrete data on how many posts digital nomads had from Dubrovnik and what results the project obtained.

"Nomads gave their suggestions about the little things that we could improve as a destination for them. For the time being, our accommodation has been intended for shorter stays. All they have listed are things that can be easily improved. They had, for example, suggestions like providing kettles, additional hangers, and similar minor details. It doesn’t require a big investment, and it makes a big difference. We should start on a coworking space where they will all meet as soon as possible. For digital nomads, when they come on their own, it is very important for them to have a space where they will meet others, work, and exchange experiences. They showed that the involvement of the local community in every part of this project was important. We are happy that the general impression is good, everyone is happy and satisfied," said Hrnić.


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She added that this conference was a good foundation for the further strategy of digital nomads that would be developed in Dubrovnik in the future. The concrete effects of the stay of digital nomads will be reflected in their social media posts, which will ultimately be summarized and multiplied in the following period. When asked about the financing of the stay of digital nomads and this conference, director Hrnić answered that the Tourist Board financed the fees of the companies Saltwater Nomads and Total Croatia News, in the amount of 200 thousand kuna.

Tanja Polegubić from the Saltwater Nomads company presented the results of four creative workshops, in which, in addition to digital nomads, the citizens of Dubrovnik also participated.

"The aim of the workshops was to make joint recommendations for creating a better environment for digital nomads who will stay in Dubrovnik," said Polegubić.

The owner of the Total Croatia News portal, Paul Bradbury, stated that the project is a great opportunity for changes in tourism, based on the new slogan "Croatia - your safe, authentic, lifestyle destination".

"The project is great and could stop now, but there is already great momentum and discussions on the next steps. It is very encouraging to see the CEO of Raiffeisen Bank, as well as senior representation from Hrvatski Telekom, KPMG, and the Zagreb Tourist Board here today," Bradbury said. "The future of work will look very different, and Croatia - and especially Dubrovnik - can repivot its tourism based on its three jewels of safety, authentic experiences and lifestyles. People want these things, and with the freedom of workplace, Croatia has a lot to offer. And one of the findings of this month was the Beyond the Walls concept, which we will be exploring more on TCN shortly. Rather than Dubrovnik being limited in its offer by the content of the old city, these nomads found more than enough content for a one-month 'workation'."

The president of the Digital Nomad Association of Croatia, Jan de Jong, stated that the project is developing very quickly and successfully.

"We need to build content and community, where I recognize the role of the association, which must unite and serve digital nomads. We also need to send a message of inspiration to young people who may want to leave Croatia and somehow reverse the 'brain drain' with the arrival of digital nomads," he said.

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photo credit: Dulist

Dutchman Rob Schubert is one of the digital nomads who has been in Dubrovnik for the past month and is delighted with the experience he has gained. His ‘start-up’ is normally located in Estonia, but it offers him various opportunities to work as a digital nomad.

"This project was so inspiring, we broadened our horizons. At this conference, I strengthened my thinking about digital nomads. I am glad that Dubrovnik has positioned itself as a new ‘hotspot’ for digital nomads. I will recommend to my friends and colleagues to come here. The city is beautiful, I have gotten to know it and I am so sad that I have to leave tomorrow," said Schubert.

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photo credit: Dulist

Let us remind you that in a joint project of the City of Dubrovnik and the Tourist Board of the City of Dubrovnik, in cooperation with Total Croatia News and Saltwater Nomads, Dubrovnik hosted ten digital nomads from different parts of the world for a month.

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photo credit: Dulist

For more information about digital nomads in Croatia, visit the TC Digital Nomads in Croatia in a Page, or follow the latest in the dedicated TCN section

Saturday, 10 April 2021

More Room Needed in Šibenik's Trokut Center: Nomads Have Arrived

April 10, 2021 - The Trokut Center for New Technologies and Entrepreneurship in Šibenik has become a place that brings together young entrepreneurs from Croatia the world. 

Šibenski Portal reports that there are currently six digital nomads there, while there are 33 tenants in the coworking space. A total of 18 companies uses the premises. Trokut is worth 28 million kunas and was built and equipped with co-financing from the European Regional Development Fund. The City of Šibenik received 20 million kunas in grants.

The Trokut Center was recently nominated for the Association of Croatian Architects award, Viktor Kovacic, for the most achievement in all architectural creativity areas in 2020.

"The center currently employs three people, as our goal is to encourage students to get involved in the Trokut Center itself. Last week we released a call to students who have free time to help us with our daily work in the center", says Diana Mudrinic, Director of the incubator for new technologies, the Trokut Center. 

Currently, the Trokut Center's capacity is complete, and the free space around 90%. The company is striving to expand the reach currently built on two floors with a total area of ​​more than 2,000 square meters. The center has 28 flexible spaces of workshops, offices, and cabins.

"For now, our customers are mainly in the IT industry. We can offer them a comfortable environment, workplace, desk, and colleagues to help them develop their businesses. I would especially like to point out our entrepreneurial incubator. We released a public call where the goal is for two months, for enterprising beginners to learn absolutely everything they need for business and their products. In the end, judges will choose to award the top 3 ideas, where the first place gets 50, the second 30, and the third 20 thousand kunas", says Mudrinic. 

The Trokut Project, worth almost 28 million kunas, the city of Šibenik received 20 million kunas from the European regional development fund. European investment in Šibenik should also attract users from all over the world and be financially sustainable.

"Digital nomads are one direction in which the Trokut Center is heading towards, and we already have them now. Some of our guests are from Latvia, India, and the Netherlands. The Digital Nomad trend is slowly but surely moving, and our goal is to become one central place for digital nomads where we can help them apply for digital nomad visas. The goal is to be self-sustainable in 3 years, according to the project rule." 

The purpose of the project is to develop innovative entrepreneurial and business infrastructure for the provision of new and better services. The aim is to encourage the growth and development of small and medium enterprises and create new jobs in Šibenik-Knin County.

Ivana Juran Magdic, from the project office in shipbuilding Levant, has her workspace in Murter but still decided to use The Trokut Center's space. "It’s very comfortable. It’s close to everything, and everyone is thrilled, from business partners, clients, and so on. I was afraid of what a coworking area will look like as I've never done that, I've been alone in the office for 12 years, so this is a new experience. It encouraged me to keep the business going", said Magdic. 

Franka Bujas, the F5 graphic design services business owner, found The Trokut Center to be a comfortable place to work in. "At first, I was working from home, looking and thinking of a space like this. However, when the Trokut Center was made, I was unsure, but the decision was made when I came here and saw what everything looks like and what it has to offer. I was thrilled, so I decided to come here. It is fully equipped for all my needs, the meeting room that is important to me looks professional. I think this is ideal for all beginners and, more specifically, larger companies." 


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Franka Bujas founder of F5 via Trokut Šibenik - Inkubator za nove tehnologije Facebook

Franka found friends in the Trokut Center who are an additional plus to that space in the space itself and the working conditions. "The working atmosphere is great, and people are young, the atmosphere is motivating. The staff is great, and they are always available for whatever is needed." 

At the opening ceremony, Diana Mudrinic, Director of the incubator for new technologies, the Trokut Center, stated the Trokut Center is the home of new generation entrepreneurs and expressed hope that Šibenik would soon become the central place of the IT community in Croatia.

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

Friday, 5 March 2021

Parliament Passes Amendments Granting Digital Nomads Right to Health Care

ZAGREB, 5 March, 2021 - The Croatian parliament on Friday passed amendments under which digital nomads, that is, third-country nationals who use digital technology for work and have been granted temporary residence in the Republic of Croatia, have the right to health care.

The amendments to the Act on Mandatory Health Insurance and Health Care for Foreigners in the Republic of Croatia enable digital nomads to exercise the right to health care.

This applies to third-country nationals who are employed or doing work using communication technology for a company or their own company which is not registered in the Republic of Croatia and do not carry out work for or provide services to employers in Croatia, and who have been granted temporary residence in our country.

They will not be obliged to apply for compulsory health insurance, but then they will bear the costs of using health care in health insitutions, private practices or other health care providers.

Amendments to the Islands Act, which transpose the government's decree on subsidising water for human consumption per islander, have been sent to second parliamentary reading.

In addition, several agricultural laws, on food control, veterinary medicine, breeding of domestic animals, have been sent to second reading.

The parliament has also adopted several reports for 2019 -- on state budget execution, on the implementation of official development assistance to foreign countries, and on the effects of the implementation of the Islands Act.

Saturday, 20 February 2021

Health Insurance for Digital Nomads in Croatia is Now Enabled

February 20, 2021 – Digital nomads in Croatia have the right to health care, as the issue of health insurance for digital nomads in Croatia is now regulated.

As HRturizam reports, on Thursday, the Government sent amendments to the Law on Compulsory Health Insurance and Health Care of Foreigners in the Republic of Croatia to the parliamentary procedure. They are harmonized with the Aliens Act to regulate the manner of exercising the right to health care for digital nomads. The amendments thus enable the realization of the health care right for digital nomads.

By the official definition, a digital nomad is a third-country national who is employed or doing business through communication technology for a company or their own company that is not registered in Croatia and does not do business or provide services to employers in Croatia and has been granted temporary residence in Croatia.

As Health Minister Vili Beroš explained, a digital nomad is not obliged to apply for compulsory health insurance. Still, they are obliged to bear the costs of using health care in a health institution, i.e., with a private practice health worker or other health care provider in Croatia.

By amending the Law on Foreigners, Croatia has introduced the concept of digital nomads who now have preferential tax treatment. Legal changes regulate the tax exemption for receipts of digital nomads – foreigners who work online from Croatia for other countries' employers.

The new Law on Foreigners for Digital Nomads prescribes a tax exemption for their income based on the status thus acquired. All this to facilitate their decision to choose Croatia as a place of residence and work.

This way of regulating their stay in Croatia assumes that digital nomads will spend their earnings here while living in our country and thus positively impact the domestic economy.

Temporary residence is granted for up to one year (possibly shorter). However, the temporary stay cannot be extended. A request for re-regulation of the digital nomad's stay may be submitted six months after the digital nomad's temporary stay expiration.

As Jan de Jong, the initiator of the introduction of visas for digital nomads, has repeatedly pointed out, when a digital nomad would spend at least 10,000 kunas a month on living in Croatia, which is more than realistic, for about 50,000 potential digital nomads (as many as there are in Bali), that would mean a revenue of about 500 million kunas a month into the Croatian economy.

At the moment, the publication of the online system for electronic submission of applications for digital nomads is still pending and will be done soon. But before that, the Ministry of the Interior announced the procedure for obtaining visas for digital nomads.

To read more about digital nomads in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Friday, 19 February 2021

People also ask Google: What is Croatia Famous For?

February 19, 2021 – What is Croatia Famous For?

People outside of the country really want to know more about Croatia. They search for answers online.

Here, we'll try to answer the popular search terms “What is Croatia famous for?” and “What is Croatia known for?”

Most of the people looking for answers to these questions have never been to Croatia. They may have been prompted to ask because they're planning to visit Croatia, they want to come to Croatia, or because they heard about Croatia on the news or from a friend.

What Croatia is known for depends on your perspective. People who live in the country sometimes have a very different view of what Croatia is famous for than the rest of the world. And, after visiting Croatia, people very often leave with a very different opinion of what Croatia is known for than before they came. That's because Croatia is a wonderful country, full of surprises and secrets to discover. And, it's because internet searches don't reveal everything. Luckily, you have Total Croatia News to do that for you.

What is Croatia known for?

1) Holidays


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Croatia is best known globally as a tourist destination. Catching sight of pictures of the country online is enough to make almost anyone want to come. If you've heard about it from a friend, seen the country used in a TV show like Game of Thrones or Succession, or watched a travel show, your mind will be made up. Following such prompts, it's common for Croatia to move to first place on your bucket list. If it's not already, it should be, There are lots of reasons why Croatia is best known for holidays (vacations).

a) Islands


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What is Croatia famous for? Islands © Mljet National Park

Within Croatia's tourist offer, its most famous aspect is its islands. Croatia has over a thousand islands - 1246 when you include islets. 48 Croatian islands are inhabited year-round, but many more come to life over the warmer months. Sailing in Croatia is one of the best ways to see the islands, and if you're looking for a place for sailing in the Mediterranean, Croatia is the best choice because of its wealth of islands. These days, existing images of Croatia's islands have been joined by a lot more aerial photography and, when people see these, they instantly fall in love.

b) Beaches


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What is Croatia famous for? Its holidays are famous for their beaches © Szabolcs Emich

Croatia has 5835 kilometres of coastline on the Adriatic Sea - 1,777.3 kilometres of coast on the mainland, and a further 4,058 kilometres of coast around its islands and islets. The Croatian coast is the most indented of the entire Mediterranean. This repeated advance and retreat into the Adriatic forms a landscape littered with exciting, spectacular peninsulas, quiet, hidden bays, and some of the best beaches in the world. There are so many beaches in Croatia, you can find a spot to suit everyone. On the island of Pag and in the Zadar region, you'll find beaches full of young people where the party never stops. Elsewhere, romantic and elegant seafood restaurants hug the shoreline. Beach bars can range from ultra-luxurious to basic and cheap. The beaches themselves can be popular and full of people, facilities, excitement and water sports, or they can be remote, idyllic, and near-deserted, accessible only by boat. Sand, pebble, and stone all line the perfectly crystal-clear seas which are the common feature shared by all.

c) Dubrovnik


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What is Croatia famous for? Dubrovnik © Ivan Ivanković

As a backdrop to Game Of Thrones and movies from franchises like Star Wars and James Bond, Dubrovnik is known all over the world. Everybody wants to see it in person, and that's why it's an essential stop-off for so many huge cruise ships in warmer months. But, Dubrovnik's fame did not begin with the invention of film and television. The city was an autonomous city-state for long periods of time in history, and Dubrovnik was known all over Europe – the famous walls which surround the city of Dubrovnik are a testament to a desire to maintain its independent standing for centuries while living in the shadow of expanding, ambitious empires.

d) Heritage


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What is Croatia famous for? Heritage. Pula amphitheatre is one of the best-preserved Roman amphitheatres in the world

The walled city of Dubrovnik is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to Croatia's rich architectural and ancient heritage. Diocletian's Palace in Split is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and still the living, breathing centre of life in the city (that people still live within it and it is not preserved in aspic is one of its most charming features and no small reason for its excellent preservation).

Having existed on the line of European defence against the Ottoman empire, Croatia also has many incredible fortresses and castles. The fortresses of Sibenik are well worth seeing if you're visiting Sibenik-Knin County and its excellent coast. A small number of Croatia's best castles exist on the coast, Rijeka's Trsat and Nova Kraljevica Castle is nearby Bakar being two of them. Most of Croatia's best and prettiest castles are actually located in its continental regions which, compared to the coast, remain largely undiscovered by most international tourists.

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Many spectacular castles in the country's continental regions are, for these parts, what is Croatia famous for

Pula amphitheatre (sometimes referred to as Pula Arena) is one of the largest and best-preserved Roman amphitheatres in the world. A spectacular sight year-round, like Diocletian's Palace, it remains a living part of the city's life, famously hosting an international film festival, concerts by orchestras, opera stars, and famous rock and pop musicians. Over recent years, it has also played a part in the city's music festivals.

e) Music Festivals


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What is Croatia famous for? Music festivals © Khris Cowley

There is a very good reason why the city of Pula leapt massively up the list of most-researched online Croatian destinations over the last decade. It played host to two of the country's most famous international music festivals. Though the music at some of these can be quite niche, the global attention they have brought to the country is simply massive. Clever modern branding and marketing by the experienced international operators who host their festivals in Croatia mean that millions of young people all over the world have seen videos, photos and reviews of Croatia music festivals, each of them set within a spectacular backdrop of seaside Croatia.

f) Plitvice Lakes and natural heritage


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What is Croatia Famous For? Plitvice Lakes, national parks and natural heritage

Known for its chain of 16 terraced lakes and gushing waterfalls, Plitvice Lakes is the oldest, biggest and most famous National Park in Croatia. Everybody wants to see it. And many do. But that's not the be-all and end-all of Croatia's stunning natural beauty. Within the country's diverse topography, you'll find 7 further National Parks and 12 Nature Parks which can be mountain terrain, an archipelago of islands, or vibrant wetlands.

2) Football


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What is Croatia famous for? Football. Seen here, Luka Modric at the 2018 World Cup © Светлана Бекетова

The glittering international careers of Croatian footballers Luka Modrić, Ivan Rakitić, Ivan Perišić, Mario Mandžukić, and others have in recent years advertised Croatia as a factory of top-flight footballing talent. They helped put Croatia football on the map with fans of European football. Football fans in Croatia have a very different perception of just how famous Croatian football is to everyone else in the world. If you talk to a Croatian fan about football, it's almost guaranteed that they will remind you of a time (perhaps before either of you were born) when their local or national team beat your local or national team in football. 99% of people will have no idea what they are talking about. The past occasions which prompt this parochial pride pale into insignificance against the Croatian National Football Team's achievement in reaching the World Cup Final of 2018. This monumental occasion brought the eyes of the world on Croatia, extending way beyond the vision of regular football fans. Subsequently, the internet exploded with people asking “Where is Croatia?”

Sports in general are what is Croatia known for

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Croatians are enthusiastic about sports and engage in a wide number of them. The difference in perception between how Croats view the fame this gets them and the reality within the rest of the world is simply huge. Rowing, basketball, wrestling, mixed martial arts, tennis, handball, boxing, waterpolo, ice hockey, skiing and volleyball are just some of the sports in which Croatia has enthusiastically supported individuals and local and national teams. Some of these are regarded as minority sports even in other countries that also pursue them. Croatians don't understand this part. If you say to a Croatian “What is handball? I never heard of that,” they will look at you like you are crazy or of below-average intelligence.

3) Zagreb


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What is Croatia famous for? Its capital city Zagreb is becoming increasingly better known

Over relatively recent years, the Croatian capital has skyrocketed in terms of fame and visitor numbers. Tens of thousands of people from all over the world now come to visit Zagreb each year. Its massive new success can be partly attributed to the rising popularity of international tourism in some areas of Asia (and Zagreb being used as a setting for some television programmes made in some Asian countries) and the massive success of Zagreb's Advent which, after consecutively attaining the title of Best European Christmas Market three times in a row, has become famous throughout the continent and further still. Zagreb's fame is not however restricted to tourism. Zagreb is known for its incredible Austro-Hungarian architecture, its Upper Town (Gornji Grad) and the buildings there, an array of museums and city centre parks and as home to world-famous education and scientific institutions, like to Ruder Boskovic Institute and the Faculty of Economics, University of Zagreb.

4) Olive oil


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What is Croatia famous for? Olive oil

Croatian olive oil is the best in the world. Don't just take out word for it! Even the experts say so. In 2020, leading guide Flos Olei voted Istria in northwest Croatia as the world's best olive oil growing region for a sixth consecutive year. Olive oil production is an ancient endeavour in Croatia, and over hundreds of years, the trees have matured, and the growers learned everything there is to know. Olive oil is made throughout a much wider area of Croatia than just Istria, and local differences in climate, variety, and soil all impact the flavour of the oils produced. Croatian has no less than five different olive oils protected at a European level under the designation of their place of origin. These and many other Croatian olive oils are distinct and are among the best you're ever likely to try.

5) There was a war here


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What is Croatia famous for? A relatively recent war left its mark on the country © Modzzak

Under rights granted to the republics of the former Yugoslavia and with a strong mandate from the Croatian people, gained across two national referendums, Croatia declared its independence from Yugoslavia in 1991. Yugoslavia was a multi-ethnic country, with each republic containing a mixture of different ethnicities and indeed many families which themselves were the product of mixed ethnicities. Ethnic tensions and the rise of strong nationalist political voices in each of the former republics and within certain regions of these countries lead to a situation where war became inevitable. The worst of the fighting was suffered within Croatia, Bosnia, and Herzegovina and the part of southern Serbia which is now Kosovo. The Croatian War of Independence (known locally as the Homeland War) lasted from 1991 – 1995. The Yugoslav wars of which it was a major part is regarded as the deadliest conflict in Europe since World War II. In many cases, this war pitted neighbouring houses or neighbouring villages against each other and sometimes members of the same family could be found on opposing sides. The war left huge damage on the country and its infrastructure, some of which is still visible. Worse still, it had a much greater physical and psychological impact on the population. Some people in Croatia today would rather not talk about the war and would prefer to instead talk about the country's present and future. For other people in Croatia, the war remains something of an obsession. If you are curious about the Croatian War of Independence, it is not advisable to bring it up in conversation when you visit the country unless you know the person you are speaking with extremely well. It is a sensitive subject for many and can unnecessarily provoke strong emotions and painful memories. There are many resources online where you can instead read all about the war, there are good documentary series about it on Youtube and there are several museums in Croatia where you can go and learn more, in Vukovar, Karlovac and in Zagreb.

6) Wine


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What is Croatia famous for? Its wine is some of the best you'll ever try © Plenković

Croatia is not really that famous for wine. Well, not as famous as it should be because Croatia makes some of the greatest wine on the planet. Croatian wine is only really famous to those who have tried it after visiting – you'll never forget it! A growing cabal of Croatian wine enthusiasts are trying their best internationally to spread the word about Croatian wine. However, there isn't really that much space in Croatia to make all the wine it needs to supply its homegrown demands and a greatly increased export market. Therefore, export prices of Croatian wine are quite high and even when it does reach foreign shores, these prices ensure its appreciation only by a select few. There's a popular saying locally that goes something like this “We have enough for ourselves and our guests”. Nevertheless, Croatian wine is frequently awarded at the most prestigious international competitions and expos. White wine, red wine, sparkling wine, cuvee (mixed) and rose wine are all made here and Croatia truly excels at making each. You can find different kinds of grape grown and wine produced in the different regions of Croatia. The best way to learn about Croatian wine is to ask someone who really knows about wine or simply come to Croatia to try it. Or, perhaps better still, don't do that and then there will be more for those of us who live here. Cheers!

7) Croatian produce


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Drniš prsut
is protected at a European level, one of 32 products currently protected in this way and therefore what is Croatia famous for © Tourist Board of Drniš

To date, 32 agricultural and food products from Croatia have attained protection at a European level. These range from different prosciuttos, olive oils and Dalmatian bacon, to pastries and pastas, honey, cheese, turkeys, lamb, cabbages, mandarins, salt, sausages, potatoes and something called Meso 'z tiblice (which took a friend from the region where it's made three days to fully research so he could explain it to me at the levels necessary to write an informed article about it – so, you can research that one online). While some prosciutto, bacon, sausages, olive oil and wine do make it out of Croatia, much of these are snaffled up by a discerning few of those-in-the-know. The rest, you will only really be able to try if you visit. And, there are many other items of Croatian produce which are known which you can also try while here

Truffles


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What is Croatia known for? Truffles © Donatella Paukovic

By weight, one of the most expensive delicacies in the world, truffles are a famous part of the cuisine within some regions of Croatia. They feature heavily in the menu of Istria, which is well known as a region in which both white and black truffles are found and then added to food, oils or other products. Truth be told, this isn't a black and white issue - there are a great number of different types of truffle and they can be found over many different regions in Croatia, including around Zagreb and in Zagreb County. But, you'll need to see a man about a dog if you want to find them yourself.

Vegeta


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What is Croatia known for? Vegeta

Having celebrated its 60th birthday in 2019, the cooking condiment Vegeta is exported and known in many other countries, particularly Croatia's close neighbours. It is popularly put into soups and stews to give them more flavour. Among its ingredients are small pieces of dehydrated vegetables like carrot, parsnip, onion, celery, plus spices, salt and herbs like parsley.

Chocolate


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What is Croatia known for? Chocolate is a big export© Alexander Stein

Though making chocolate is only around a century old in Croatia, Croatian chocolate has grown to become one of its leading manufactured food exports. Some of the most popular bars may be a little heavy on sugar and low on cocoa for more discerning tastes. But, lots of others really like it.

Beer


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What is Croatia famous for? Its beer is becoming more famous internationally © The Garden Brewery

The exploding growth of the Croatian craft ale scene over the last 10 years is something that is likely to have passed you by, unless you're a regular visitor to the country, a beer buff or both. Most of the producers are quite small and production not great enough to make a big splash on international markets. However, even within a craft-flooded current market, Croatian beer is becoming more widely known – in one poll, the Zagreb-based Garden Brewery was in 2020 voted Europe's Best Brewery for the second consecutive year

8) Innovation


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What is Croatia famous for? Pioneers, inventors and innovation. Nikola Tesla was born here

From the parachute, fingerprinting, the retractable pen and the tungsten filament electric light-bulb to the torpedo, modern seismology, the World Health Oganisation and the cravat (a necktie, and the precursor to the tie worn by many today), Croatia has gifted many innovations to the world. The list of pioneers - scientists, artists, researchers and inventors - who were born here throughout history is long. And, although innovation is not currently regarded as experiencing a golden period in Croatia, there are still some Croatian innovators whose impact is felt globally, such as electric hypercar maker Mate Rimac.

9) Being poor


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What is Croatia famous for? Being poor. Yikes!

The minimum wage in Croatia is among the lowest in Europe. Croatian language media is constantly filled with stories about corruption. There is a huge state apparatus in which key (if not most) positions are regarded to be politically or personally-motivated appointments. This leads to a lack of opportunity for Croatia's highly educated young people. Many emigrate for better pay and better opportunities. This leads to a brain drain and affects the country's demographics considerably (if it usually the best educated, the ablest and the youngest Croatian adults who emigrate). Many of those who stay are influenced by the stories of widespread corruption and lack of opportunity and are therefore lethargic in their work, leading to a lack of productivity. A considerable part of the Croatian economy is based on tourism which remains largely seasonal.

10) People want to live in Croatia


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What is Croatia famous for? People want to come and live here. No, really.

Yes, despite many younger Croatians leaving or dreaming of leaving and despite the low wages, many people who are not from Croatia dream about living here. Of course, it's an all too familiar scenario that you go on holiday somewhere and while sitting at a seafood restaurant in sight of a glorious sunset, having had a few too many glasses of the local wine, you fall in love with Miguel or however the waiter is called who served it and Miguel's homeland. But, with Croatia, this is actually no passing fancy, no idle holiday dream. People do decide to move here. And not just for the sunset and Miguel (nobody in Croatia is called Miguel - Ed).

Croatia may be known for being poor, but it also has one of the best lifestyles in Europe. That it's cafe terraces are usually full to capacity tells you something about the work to living ratio. Croatians are not just spectators of sport, many enjoy a healthy lifestyle. This informs everything from their pastimes to their diet. There are great facilities for exercise and sport, wonderful nature close by whichever part of the country you're in. You can escape into somewhere wonderful and unknown at a moment's notice. The country is well connected internally by brilliant roads and motorways, reliable intercity buses and an international train network. The tourism industry ensures that multiple airports across Croatia can connect you to almost anywhere you want to go, and major international airports in Belgrade and Budapest, just a couple of hours away, fly to some extremely exotic locations. There are a wealth of fascinating neighbour countries on your doorstep to explore on a day trip or weekend and superfast broadband is being rolled out over the entire country. This is perhaps one of the reasons Croatia has been heralded as one of the world's best options for Digital Nomads. In a few years, when we ask what is Croatia famous far, they could be one of the answers.

What is Croatia famous for, but only after you've visited

Some things you experience when you visit Croatia come as a complete surprise. Most would simply never be aware of them until they visit. They are usually top of the list of things you want to do when you come back to Croatia.

Gastronomy


fritaja_sparoge_1-maja-danica-pecanic_1600x900ntbbbbb.jpgGastronomy is only one of the things what is Croatia known for only after you've visited © Maja Danica Pecanic / Croatian National Tourist Board

Despite a few famous TV chefs having visited and filmed in Croatia over the years, Croatian gastronomy remains largely unknown to almost everyone who's never been to Croatia. That's a shame because you can find some fine food here. Croatia has increased its Michelin-starred and Michelin-recommended restaurants tenfold over recent years. But, perhaps the bigger story is the traditional cuisine which varies greatly within the countries different regions. From the gut-busting barbecue grills and the classic Mediterranean fare of Dalmatia to the pasta, asparagus and truffles of Istria to the sausages and paprika-rich stews of Slavonia and the best smoked and preserved meats of the region, there's an untold amount of secret Croatian gastronomy to discover.

Coffee


restaurant-3815076_1280.jpgWhat is Croatia known for? Well, to locals, it's famous for coffee - not just a drink, it's a ritual

Croatians are passionate about coffee and about going for coffee. It's a beloved ritual here. Going for coffee in Croatia is often about much more than having coffee. It's an integral part of socialising, catching up and sometimes being seen. It doesn't always involve coffee either. Sometimes, you'll be invited for coffee, only to end up ordering beer. It's not about the coffee. Although, the standard of coffee in Croatia, and the places where you drink it, is usually really good.

The misapprehension: What is Croatia known for (if you are a Croatian living in Croatia)

Handball, music

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Friday, 11 December 2020

Welcome Home Office: Falkensteiner Introduces Digital Nomad Offer

December 11, 2020 - Falkensteiner is the latest to join the digital nomad trend, offering their Premium Senia apartments as part of the Welcome Home Office offer! 

Remote work or "long stay" offers for digital nomads is a new global trend, which has been accepted by many Croatian hoteliers and camps. Falkensteiner is the latest to join the new trend, offering Premium Senia apartments to digital nomads and business people through long-term rentals in the top Punta Skala resort, just ten minutes by car to Zadar!

The apartments are bright and spacious, in a variety of sizes, with a fully equipped kitchen and a large terrace, and, of course, high-speed internet. 

The Welcome Home Office offer is based on a minimum of seven nights, with a price of 80 EUR per day onwards, including one free massage and a twenty percent discount on spa treatments at the Falkensteiner Hotel & Spa Iadera.

The service also offers a meeting room with conference equipment, and the possibility of printing and scanning is available. There is also a "Premium living" service, a weekly purchase according to your needs, and the possibility of breakfast or half board.

In addition to work, additional content is important, in which the Punta Skala resort has a sure advantage. The resort offers a full range of facilities for sports fans - from a fitness room to endless promenades and jogging trails by the sea and an outdoor sports center with tennis courts, golf course, mini-golf, badminton, basketball, five-a-side football, beach volleyball, rental of sports equipment.

On the other hand, in the AquaPura Spa center on as much as 6,000 square meters, there are outdoor and indoor pools, Turkish hammam, steam baths, numerous saunas, including a panoramic earthen sauna overlooking the sea, Kneipp pool, and private spa.

Even better, back in August, Falkensteiner introduced free COVID-19 testing to the guests in its hotels. 

You can read more about Falkensteiner's Welcome Home Office offer for digital nomads HERE.

Source: HRTurizam

To read more about digital nomads in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Wednesday, 9 December 2020

Washington Post: Croatia Attracting Digital Nomads During the Pandemic

December 9, 2020 – One of the leading American daily newspaper, the Washington Post, published an article about Croatia attracting digital nomads from the USA while the rest of Europe banned all travel.

The Washington Post wrote about digital nomads who spent several months in Croatia and Dubrovnik during the coronavirus pandemic, said Ina Rodin, the Croatian National Tourist Board director in the United States.

The article states that many Americans decided to travel thanks to the first direct airline between Croatia and the United States, namely between Dubrovnik and Philadelphia, introduced in June 2019. According to the Croatian National Tourist Board, Americans were the second most numerous guests in Dubrovnik last year, with almost 160,000 arrivals and more than 442,000 overnight stays, writes the Washington Post.

Sarah Morlock, a freelance writer and social media manager from Indiana, who worked remotely and spent October and November in Dubrovnik with her partner, shared her experience with readers. She pointed out that when choosing a place to stay, she is looking for historic cities with preserved nature and a good internet connection, and in that sense, Dubrovnik has fulfilled all her expectations.

Binational couples attracted too

Apart from digital nomads, Croatia is also attractive for binational couples who, due to the coronavirus pandemic and limited travel opportunities, organized their meeting in Croatia.

One of the couples who did so was Justin Leung from the USA and Katja Lau from Germany. They were supposed to meet in San Francisco, but the coronavirus pandemic and lockdown thwarted their plans. Therefore, they decided to find a place that welcomed both Americans and Germans and thus chose to meet in Croatia, where they spent one month.

The Washington Post points out that Dubrovnik is trying to attract digital nomads, so a project to introduce ultra-fast broadband Internet was presented in February. Also, a virtual conference "Dubrovnik for digital nomads" was held in October to encourage them to choose Dubrovnik for their remote office.

Washington Post covers this topic right when the introduction of the digital nomad visa in Croatia is increasingly likely. Namely, TCN reported a new update about digital nomad visas in Croatia today, as the Croatian Digital Nomad Association has officially been founded.

At the beginning of 2021, Croatia will introduce a digital nomad visa, which will make it the second country in Europe and the fifth in the world to welcome digital nomads from all over the world.

Wednesday, 25 November 2020

Parliament Passes Foreign Nationals Act, No More Annual Quotas for Employment

ZAGREB, November 25, 2020 - The Croatian Parliament on Wednesday passed the new Foreign Nationals Act under which there will no longer be an annual quota for the employment of foreign nationals.

None of the 32 amendments put forward by the opposition were accepted.

Under the new law, the government will no longer establish an annual quota for the employment of foreign nationals, but employers will be obliged to submit a request to the Croatian Employment Service (HZZ) to conduct a labour market test.

If there are no unemployed persons in Croatia that meet employers' criteria, employers will then submit an application for residence and work permits to the Interior Ministry, which then requests an opinion from the HZZ regarding hiring a specific foreign national. The procedure, including the labour market test, will last a maximum of 30 days.

The act also stipulates exceptions to the labour market test, which is not conducted for shortage occupations, such as carpenters, masons, waiters, butchers, and for seasonal work up to 90 days in agriculture, forestry, hospitality and tourism.

The new act also introduces long-stay visas (visa D) in the event that a third-country national is granted temporary residence for work, family reunification, university education, research and secondary education.

Another novelty is a more favourable regulation of temporary and permanent residence for Croats with a foreign citizenship or without a citizenship who have a certificate from the Central State Office for Croats Abroad.

In addition, family members of Croatian nationals can acquire permanent residence under more favourable conditions, as can foreign minors who have been granted temporary residence for a period of three years and one of their parents has been granted permanent residence or long-term residence.

The act also gives the possibility of regulating the temporary residence of digital nomads, that is, foreign nationals who work online for foreign employers.

The new Foreign Nationals Act enters into force on 1 January 2021.

Friday, 13 November 2020

Arena Hospitality Group Announces Offers for Digital Nomads

November 13, 2020 - Arena Hospitality Group announces offers for digital nomads in a selection of its camps and hotels. 

HRTurizam reports that the current crisis situation caused by the global coronavirus pandemic has shown that, thanks to the application of digital technology, we can do most of our work both in the office and anywhere else. It is enough to have a laptop, a mobile device, and a quality internet connection.

This fact was recognized and quickly adapted by the tourism sector, and many hotel companies, both global and Croatian, offered special offers targeting digital nomads and opened their hotels for business guests who use the hotel as an office.

Thus, Arena Hospitality Group (AGH) announced special offers for digital nomads in its camps Arena Grand Kažela and Arena Stoja, which are open all year round, as well as the hotel Park Plaza Histria in Pula.

“Arena Hospitality Group is always open to new market challenges, ready to provide our guests with the complete service they need not only for vacation but also to do business during their stay in hotels and camps. Staying at camps Arena Grand Kažela and Arena Stoja enables an escape from the hectic, dynamic, and regular rhythm that has become our everyday life. Untouched nature enables you to experience the beauties of autumn and winter, and at the same time perform all business tasks and obligations without hindrance," AHG points out.

In the mentioned open camps, high-quality digital infrastructure is provided throughout the year, which, in addition to the existing quality of mobile home accommodation, satisfies both private and business needs.

AGH has provided the minimum necessary for digital nomads: ​​self-check-in (contactless), contactless payment, super high-speed Internet, Netflix, Ott iPTV service for watching TV channels in every part of the camps via mobile devices, and a mobile application for the best guest experience.

As part of this year's World Tourism Exchange WTM in London, AHG received recognition from the world organization "Responsible Tourism Partnership" for responsible tourism and coping in the covid-19 pandemic.

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