Thursday, 4 November 2021

Discovering Authentic Croatia's Secrets With Seoski Tourism

November 4, 2021 – Village tourism or countryside tourism - Seoski tourism in Croatia - offers authentic, traditional experiences. Aleksandra Kuratko, secretary of Udruga ruralnog turizma Hrvatske (Croatian Rural Tourism Association) tells us more about it, and their work to help facilitate it

Croatia's visitor offer is evolving and expanding. There are exciting aspects of authentic Croatia to be discovered. Away from the beach, villages inland often look remarkably similar to how they did one hundred years ago. There, crops are grown and produce made in ways passed down through generations of families. And, in some lucky instances, these family farmers are willing to open their doors, invite you inside and show you how they live.

25_-_Pelje_ac_-_Bread_under_bell_at_Agroturizam_Antunovi_.jpgBread from the peka at Agroturizam Antunović on Pelješac

Seoski Tourism – translated as either village tourism or countryside tourism – is just that. Family farms that offer hospitality. These are some of the most homely and most welcoming accommodation experiences you can have in Croatia. Offering sights and sounds, tastes and flavours that you can't find anywhere else, visits or stays in Seoski Tourism places have long been loved by locals for weekend breaks or holidays outside peak summer. But, increasingly, these authentic Croatia experiences are being discovered by international visitors.

14_-_Moslavina_-_Goats_at_Kezele_family_farm.jpgMoslavina goats at Kezele family farm © Davor Konjikušić

One institution trying to facilitate the growth in interest is Udruga ruralnog turizma Hrvatske - Croatian Rural Tourism Association. Since it was formed in 2016, they have tried to bring together Croatia's family farm hosts, to promote them and educate them, and to build bridges between these independents and tourist boards, tourist agencies, educators and even the wider world outside Croatia.

16_-_Moslavina_-_renewed_traditional_house_at_Kezelefamily_farm.jpgSeoski turizam Kezele in Šumećani, on the border of Zagreb County and Bjelovar Bilogora County © Davor Konjikušić

Based in Ivanić-Grad, Zagreb County, the Croatian Rural Tourism Association is currently touring the length and breadth of the country, holding workshops with as many Seoski Tourism family farms that will come. And if the farmwork doesn't allow them free time, then they can attend Croatian Rural Tourism Association workshops online.

On the eve of the association's online Seoski Tourism workshops for Central Croatia and Slavonia, TCN interviewed Aleksandra Kuratko, secretary of Udruga ruralnog turizma Hrvatske, to find out more about Seoski Tourism in Croatia.

18_-_Prigorje_-_Local_specialties_at_Raki__family_farm.jpgPrigorje specialties at Rakić family farm

My name is Aleksandra Kuratko and I am secretary of Udruga ruralnog turizma Hrvatske. As an association, we are 5 years old.

We have 35 members, most of whom are service providers in what we call Seoski Tourism. We also have several tourist boards and two educational institutions as members.

19_-_Bilogora_-_Horses_in_autumn_at_Agroturizam_Na_malenom_brijegu.jpgBilogora horses in autumn at Agroturizam Na malenom brijegu © Vladimir Vlajinić

Seoski tourism is not quite the same as rural tourism, because rural tourism is many different types of tourism that happen in rural areas. Seoski tourism - which you might translate as village tourism - is quite specific. We assemble people who work in agriculture and who, at the same time, are also offering hospitality. In English, you might call them Farm Stays. Or Agro-tourism – a merging of agriculture and tourism.

28_-_Pelje_ac_-_fresh_vegetables_from_Agroturizam_Antunovi_.jpgFresh vegetables at Agroturizam Antunović on Pelješac

People who work on agricultural estates often take care of local cultural heritage. For example, they might maintain and renew traditional wooden or stone houses. Many also have etno collections, in which they preserve different objects from their region. Some of these objects might have been used in agriculture and households hundreds of years ago. So, they are preserving the cultural heritage of Croatian villages. This is what we call material cultural heritage. But, there's another kind.

Ethno0017.jpgCultural heritage preserved in one Slavonian village © Mario Romulić

Non-material cultural heritage is also a part. That might be preserving old recipes of traditional, regionally-specific dishes. Or, it might be showcasing the songs and dance of local music.

We are currently running a project which is supported by the Croatian Ministry of Tourism and Sports in which we hold 37 Seoski Tourism workshops in the field all over Croatia. There will also be around 15 online workshops. The workshops are aimed at colleagues who currently operate in Seoski Tourism – they work in agriculture and offer hospitality. Also invited are local tourist boards and local action groups.

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So far, we conducted 20 workshops in the regions of Central Croatia, Slavonia and Baranja, and Podunavlje. From next week until the end of the year, we will conduct the workshops in Istria, Kvarner, Lika and Dalmatia. Some service providers were not able to attend earlier workshops, because of work commitments of Covid. So, we decided to also offer access to the workshops online. Tomorrow is our first online workshop for Central Croatia and on Friday it's the online workshop for Slavonia.

These workshops are interactive discussions between our association, service providers and all other stakeholders. We discuss the legislative framework, which can be extremely complex. We talk about new trends in tourism for the post-pandemic era. We also discuss the importance of integrating cultural heritage in digital promotion.

26_-_Pelješac_-_Donkey_farm_at_Agroturizam_Antunović.jpgDonkey farm at Agroturizam Antunović on Pelješac

For the legislative framework, we have initiated the formation of a working group for the development of Seoski Tourism, which is now operating in the Croatian Ministry of Tourism and Sports. So, at the workshops, we ask if anyone is having issues. We collect the responses and address them in the working group.

Part of the workshop is the presentation of a new web application of Seoski Tourism, which we have developed with Croatian Ministry of Tourism and Sports. It has two purposes. One is to create a digital catalogue of Croatian Seoski Tourism. You can see region by region some of the Seoski Tourism options – currently around 40, those who have already enrolled.

30_-_Podravina_-_Etno_rooms_at_Zlatni_klas_Otrovanec.jpgPodravina Etno rooms at Zlatni klas Otrovanec

A version of the app is currently available on the website of the National Tourist Board. But, they are building a new website. The forthcoming version of the catalogue will likely be more user-friendly with many more functions and options. On the new website, Croatia's Seoski Tourism options will be detailed in many different languages. It should be a great resource not only for tourists but for travel agencies, journalists like you and for educational institutions. That's the reason we are devoting time in our workshops to encourage Seoski Tourism providers to enroll. We are just at the beginning of the process.

11_-_Hrvatsko_zagorje_-_Grešna_pilnica.jpgGrešna pilnica in Zagorje © Jasna Podboj

The second purpose of the app is to collect information about the service providers. This info will be used by our working group when defining a Croatian model of Seoski Tourism. So far, we have taken examples from Slovenia, Italy and other countries that are successful with Seoski Tourism. But, these models were entered into our legislative system without fully considering our distinct business and cultural environments. That is now about to change.

We are very happy that, following many years of partially successful advocacy, there is now political will at a ministerial level to really shape things up, to change the laws and regulations in order to facilitate Seoski Tourism. We want to encourage more Seoski Tourism, not to have people from agriculture being turned away because of the difficulty of the process and bureaucracy.

22_-_Istria_-_Medieval_theme_park_San_Michael.jpgMedieval Theme Park San Michael © Silvia Otočan

You said part of the workshops will focus on new trends. What are some of these?

Research has been done by a working group that is developing a new tourism strategy for Croatia. It's called Strategy for Sustainable Tourism to 2030. Under the auspices of this group, a number of research fields have been analysed.

The collected data shows that a huge percentage of tourists are now more inclined to eat locally grown and healthy food. They want to spend their time on estates that are run in accordance with ecological principles. So, they really care about issues like how waste is disposed of etc. They also pay a lot of attention to culture. They are curious to learn exactly how we are living, how we are working and how we produce things. They want to learn about our society and culture. And, importantly, they really care about how they spend their money. Above all, they want to spend money in areas that can help support local communities.

17_-_Prigorje_-_Breakfast_at_Rakić_Family_Farm.jpgPrigorje Breakfast at Rakić Family Farm

For us, this is really important. Because Seoski Tourism answers these demands to an incredibly high level. We do produce local, healthy food. Not only on the agricultural estates where you can experience Seoski Tourism, but also from their neighbours who just do agriculture. We are concerned with ecology, we protect cultural heritage and the money spent in Seoski Tourism stays in local communities, where it has very beneficial effects.

In the digital promotion part of the workshops we are trying to persuade people about the importance of their online presence. Basically, these days, if you're not online, it's almost like you don't exist. So, we try to explain the importance of having good-quality photos, short videos and a regular online presence.

1_-_Baranja_-_Kulen__varci_nd_other_specialties_at_Baranjska_ku_a.jpgKulen, čvarci and other specialties at Baranjska kuća © Denis Despot

That's interesting. In some cases, it might be like two different worlds colliding - people who work in a traditional industry and a traditional environment having to adapt to a very modern way of operating. There's also another potential collision when providers learn of the expectations within modern tourism. Because these people can no longer just work in agriculture. To operate in Seoski Tourism, you're also very much expected to also be a host.

Yes. All of our current service providers who are successful within Seoski Tourism are also great hosts. It's essential. You can see it in almost all of the reviews for this kind of tourism. Guests come for the food and drinks and surroundings, yes. But, what they value the most, what they remember the most, is the host part of the experience. On the estates of Croatian Seoski Tourism, guests are welcomed like family. Across all of Croatian tourism we are expected to be good hosts. It's part of our reputation and the reason why many people come here from all over the world. In Seoski Tourism, it is vital we live up to those expectations.

13_-_Moslavina_-_Bread_from_bread_owen_at_Kezele_family_farm.jpgKezele family farm © Davor Konjikušić

Another aspect of this, which is a more recently-observed element, is that visitors often want an insight into the actual lives, even the personalities of their hosts. They want not only to taste the homemade sausages you make, but they also want to know how you do it, where you do it, how you learned to do that. When they go to Spain, they want to know how the people there make their wine. And, when they come to Croatia, they want to learn how we do it here.

So, all in all, those of us in Seoski Tourism are really busy. We are in agriculture, yes, but we are also in tourism and we are also online. With this more recently-observed aspect, we will need to try and devote even more time to our hosting. It can be difficult to balance the demands on your time. But, in our workshops, we are trying to persuade people to talk more about themselves, their lives, their cultural heritage. And, if there isn't time to do everything themselves, then to involve different and often younger generations of the family. Sometimes within the hosting or alternatively just with the online promotion and presence.

15_-_Moslavina_-_Kezele_family_farm_ethno_collection.jpgKezele family farm ethno collection © Davor Konjikušić

I've visited some family farms that were right at the start of their journey with Seoski Tourism and they seemed surprised that I was at all interested in what they do and how they do it. I think maybe they thought I was a bit crazy.

Yes, that is a response we sometimes also see at first. I think it's because our generation takes a lot of things for granted. We sometimes think that what we do is just what we do. We are not so good at showcasing it. “Why would I show someone how I make my cheese? I make my cheese like my grandmother used to make it” But, for those who open their doors to Seoski Tourism, inquiries about how they do what they do are only increasing. So, they seem to appreciate how we advise them in the workshops.

5_-_Me_imurje_-_Picnic_by_Me_imurski_dvori_restaurant.jpgPicnic by Restaurant Međimurski dvori © Igor Nobilo

We are trying to let our producers know that Seoski Tourism is not just a platform to sell their produce and an overnight stay, but it's a full experience they can sell. There are agricultural farms in Austria that are established in tourism that you must pay only to visit. Of course, that doesn't happen currently anywhere in Croatia, even though some of our Seoski Tourism estates have sections that look like museums.

Some of these aspects are very new. And the feedback is great. I truly believe there are hidden treasures to be discovered in some Croatian villages. We are here to tell that story.

IMG_0239fghj.jpgSelection of food from a Slavonian village © Mario Romulić

What is so rewarding about Croatian Seoski Tourism that international visitors would want to go to a traditional farm in some inland village instead of lying on the beach in Dalmatia for 14 days?

People come because they really want to see a different side of Croatia. And, there are many different aspects of Croatia to discover – not just Seoski Tourism, but also National Parks and Nature Parks. All of our current trends show us that more and more tourists are willing to come inland from the coast or to explore a different part of Croatia – inland Istria, for example, or continental Croatia.

20_-_Karlovac_-_Kamačnik_river_canyon.jpgKamačnik river canyon © Aleksandra Kuratko Pani

They really want to try authentic, local food. They want to eat healthy, to know what they are eating and how it is made. And, they want to experience flavours that are different from the usual ones they get from the supermarket.

6_-_Me_imurje_-_Traditional_Me_imurje_table_at_etno_restaurant_Me_imurski_dvori.jpgTraditional Međimurje table at Etno restaurant Međimurski dvori

Also, I would say that with Seoski Tourism, people get to know better an authentic version of Croatia and its culture. It's a story we hear very often from our members. Some of them are visited by large groups from cruisers. These are people who might be on a cruise on the Adriatic and who journey inland for a day trip. Or, it might be a group who are cruising the Danube and disembark to visit a family farm in Slavonia, Baranja or Srijem.

24_-__ibenik_-_Drnis_prosciutto_Ivana_Kalpi__Agroturizam_Kalpi_.jpgProsciutto from Drniš at Agrotourism Kalpić © Ivana Kalpić

When they visit farming estates on day trips, it's very often a huge 'wow' moment for them. For many, in their minds, Croatia is simply sun and sea. And that's not entirely their fault. We, as a country, have done very little until now to promote alternative sides of Croatia. The visitors experience these wow moments because of the hospitality they receive and because of the tangible aspect of the visit. This is a modern aspect – people want to touch things, know how things feel, taste, smell. They want to ride on horses or feed them. Or take part in cultural activities. These parts of a visit to Seoski Tourism are very difficult to experience anywhere else.

img_0261.jpg__648x432_q85_subsampling-2.jpg(left) Ivana Alilović, director of Zagreb County Tourist Board (right) Aleksandra Kuratko, secretary of Udruga ruralnog turizma Hrvatske (Croatian Rural Tourism Association) © Zagreb County

Udruga ruralnog turizma Hrvatske's online Seoski Tourism workshops begin today and their physical workshops continue next week in Istria.

If you'd like to read more about rural tourism in Croatia, then look here

Tuesday, 26 October 2021

Traditional Potravlje Pottery Workshop Hosted by Sinj Tourist Board (VIDEO)

October 26, 2021 - Traditional Potravlje pottery was again in the spotlight in Sinj thanks to an educational workshop led by Ivan Knezović.

On Friday, October 21, 2021, the Sinj Tourist Board, with the support of the Ministry of Culture and Media of the Republic of Croatia, the Museum of Cetina Krajina - Sinj, and the City of Sinj, organized two educational workshops for children and adults about traditional hand wheel pottery from Potravlje.

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Željko Zrnčić

After last year's break, and due to increased interest, for the sixth time, several workshops were organized. As in previous years, the workshop for children was held in cooperation with the kindergarten "Bili Cvitak" and Mrs. Ana Glavinović, who assisted Ivan Knezović in making objects from clay. At the end of the workshop, the proud little participants took their handicrafts with them to decorate the premises of the kindergarten. This year, the students of the 4th grade of the Technical and Industrial School of Ruđer Bošković, who participated in the school project Research of Cultural Heritage under the mentorship of Professor Branimir Romac, also joined the workshops.

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Željko Zrnčić

Ivan Knezović, who regularly leads these educational workshops, is also among the last to engage in this traditional craft. Traditional hand pottery from Potravlje has had the status of an intangible cultural property since 2013. Accordingly, the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Croatia nominated it for the protection of UNESCO.

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Željko Zrnčić

It is imperative to preserve this segment of traditional culture and continue living by passing it on to younger generations. With this goal in mind, the Sinj Tourist Board, with the support of the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Croatia, holds workshops on Traditional hand pottery from Potravlje. Due to the large number of participants who wanted to try to make valuable objects and successfully implement all epidemiological measures, the workshops were held from 16:00 to 20:30.

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Željko Zrnčić

In the introductory part, Danijela Petričević Banović, curator of the Museum of the Cetina Region in Sinj, gave an interesting and instructive lecture on traditional pottery. This was followed by a presentation and guidance of Ivan Knezović through the stages of preparation and processing of clay to the final pottery. Anyone who expressed a desire and interest could participate in making pottery under his expert guidance. Workshop participants received unique souvenirs personally made by the leader, Ivan Knezović, and the youngest participants received small gifts and gingerbread as souvenirs.

In addition to these workshops, in the musical part of the evening, members of the Association for the Preservation of Heritage of the Cetina Region and KUD Dicmo performed traditional melodies of ojkavica: male and female rera, which is also on the list of intangible heritage of the Ministry of Culture and Media of the Republic of Croatia.

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Željko Zrnčić

You can see the production process and scenes from the workshop below:

 

This workshop is co-financed by the Ministry of Culture and Media of the Republic of Croatia. The Sinj Tourist Board genuinely thanked everyone who helped them in the realization of this project.

Friday, 22 October 2021

Sinj Tourist Board Wins Plautilla International Cultural Tourism Award

October 22, 2022 - The Sinj Tourist Board is the Plautilla international cultural tourism award winner!

This is an award for a cultural tourism product characterized by quality and creative interpretation of cultural and historical heritage. In this case, the plaque was awarded to Sinj in the Best Cultural Tourism Product for the "1715 Battle of Sinj" play.

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The Sinj Tourist Board was awarded for the best cultural tourism product as part of the 7th International Congress of Historic Cities, organized by the Solin Tourist Board, Hotel President Solin, and the City of Solin, held from October 19 to 22, 2021, at the Hotel President in Solin, under the auspices of the Ministry of Culture and Media, Ministry of Tourism and Sport, Split-Dalmatia County Tourist Board, Split-Dalmatia County, Croatian Association of Historic Towns, Public Institutions of Culture Zvonimir, Split Tourist Board, Split City Museum, Split Archaeological Museum and Klis Municipality.

Under the motto "Meet, share and build," this congress aims at critical stakeholders in managing historic cities, from local governments, tourist boards, and representatives of cultural institutions to travel agencies and educational institutions. The congress program consists of lectures and panel discussions, emphasizing meetings, exchanging experiences, and developing new tourist products in the historic cities of Croatia and abroad. Therefore, the Sinj Tourist Board is honored because, among many institutions and other candidates, the "1715 Battle of Sinj" play won in the Best Cultural Tourism Product category.

It should be noted that the Sinj Tourist Board has already won the bronze plaque for the Best Cultural Tourism Product for their traditional Potravlje handmade pottery workshop.

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"We thank our colleagues from Solin as well as the organizing committee that recognized and rewarded our work. Finally, we thank everyone who contributed to the continuity of the 1715 Battle of Sinj play, and we dedicate the award to our defenders, to whom the play is inspired and dedicated," said the Sinj Tourist Board.

The award was accepted at the ceremony by Miro Bulj, President of the Sinj Tourist Board. 

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

Wednesday, 20 October 2021

Traditional Potravlje Hand Pottery Workshop Returns to Sinj

October 20, 2021 - The Sinj Tourist Board will host a traditional Potravlje hand pottery workshop on October 22. 

After a series of successful and well-attended workshops, the Sinj Tourist Board, under the auspices of the Ministry of Culture and Media of the Republic of Croatia and in cooperation with the Cetina Region Museum in Sinj, organizes an educational workshop about traditional pottery from Potravlje after last year's break due to the coronavirus pandemic. 

 

This year's workshop will be held on Friday, October 22 at 18:00 in the Cetina Region Museum in Sinj. In the introductory part of this educational workshop, participants will hear a fascinating lecture by the museologists who will introduce pottery and its role in developing cultures and civilizations. The workshop leader, Mr. Ivan Knezović, one of the last masters of this traditional craft, will present how this earthenware is made. The participants of the workshop, if they wish, will be able to try their hand at making clay pots with the professional help of master Knezović.

It should be noted that the beginnings of hand pottery date back to the 4th century BC and that the village of Potravlje is its cradle. Namely, the century-old tradition of making earthenware until the Second World War was practiced by about fifty families in the villages of the Cetina region and Potravlje by about twenty of them. In 1774, the famous Italian travel writer Alberto Fortis claimed that Potravlje's rough pots were more durable than those from his homeland.

 

This was the time when households used various earthenware pots, copper for cooking milk or for preparing turkey - rare corn polenta, jars for holding butter and sour milk, pots for storing wine, grain, utensils for barbecue, peka - bell-shaped lids that covered the dough for bread or some other dish on the open hearth, pjati - plates for serving dishes, bowls (shallow bowls), and drinking jugs. Each vessel had a name according to its purpose (copper mlikarica, purarica, dubočica). Today, in addition to some traditional dishes, those of new shapes and purposes are made, such as amphorae (for tourist sale), flower pots - pitari, and various miniature forms of traditional dishes offered as souvenirs.

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Traditional hand pottery from Potravlje is an intangible cultural asset of the Republic of Croatia. Therefore, the workshops will be held following the recommendations and valid measures of the CNIPH and the Civil Protection Headquarters.

The Sinj Tourist Board has prepared souvenirs for all participants, which will be distributed at the end of the workshop.

All those interested can send their applications to e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or apply by calling 021 / 826-352 by Friday, October 22 at noon.

Participation in the workshop is free, and the number of participants is limited.

Tuesday, 19 October 2021

Imotski Apartments Prove Hit, Reservations for Next Summer Already Coming

October the 19th, 2021 - When most of us who live in Croatia think of Imotski, we tend not to think of tourism and foreign tourists arriving en masse. The image of this inland Dalmatian destination, however, is gradually altering as foreign visitors discover the hinterland and all of its wonder a stone's throw away from the coast. Imotski apartments have done exceptionally well, prices have increased and reservations for summer 2022 are already coming in.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, yet another tourist season marked by the coronavirus pandemic has passed us by, and for the Imotski region it was especially lucrative, because their 2.5 thousand beds were more or less all filled.

Namely, after a successful tourist season, most of the 384 owners of luxury holiday homes with swimming pools in Imotski are satisfied. Imotski will, this year for the first time in history, record as many as 100 thousand overnight stays, four thousand more than back in pre-pandemic in 2019 when staying in private Imotski apartments with pools and amazing views was nowhere near as popular as simply heading straight for the coast.

"We had a great peak of the season and we also did well in September, but the pre-season was a non-starter and that's why we're still behind that year. This year in the Dalmatian hinterland was marked mainly by guests from Germany, Poland, Scandinavia, the Netherlands and Austria.

Reservations came in at the last minute, and 2022 already shows that it will be different and the competition will end up being much stronger. That's why marketing will be very important to us, which will be done during the winter, because the market needs to be reached with quality messages,'' said Ana Marija Paleka, head of the Novasol office for Slobodna Dalmacija.

Everyone involved in the home and private apartment rental business agrees that there has been a lot of thoughts being put into and around pricing formation this year, so some have significantly lowered their prices in fear of vacant properties, while others have increased them significantly as demand has visibly and in some cases quite rapidly grown.

"All this is logical because we went through the night from despair to euphoria, or from 50 euros to 300 euros per night in the same building. No one expected such interest at once and not everyone coped equally in it. It's really important that we keep the quality up. People should be prudent and careful in thinking about business for 2022, because there can be surprises. We're entering a normal year with strong competition and not everything will be like this year was,'' warned Boris Zgomba, President of the Association of Agencies at the Croatian Chamber of Commerce (HGK).

For more, make sure to follow our dedicated travel section.

Friday, 8 October 2021

Tastes of Europe - Dalmatia: ORF Austria TV Crew Explores Inland Dalmatia

October 8, 2021 - Tastes of Europe - Dalmatia will air at the end of November on the Austrian national television on the television channel ORF2.

As part of the ongoing tourist promotion, the Croatian National Tourist Board and the Split-Dalmatia County Tourist Board, in cooperation with local tourist boards, welcomed the ORF Austria television team in Inland Dalmatia. 

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Namely, due to the expressed interest of the ORF television team, Lojze Weiser, ORF advisor and associate, Florian Gebauer, director with associates accompanied by Branimir Tončinić, Director of the CNTB Representation in Austria, arrived in Croatia as part of a ten-day program filmed in Split-Dalmatia and Dubrovnik-Neretva counties. 

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The rich gastronomic, cultural, historical, and natural heritage, based on the unique traditional cuisine, the climate from which it originated, as well as stories and customs related to it, will be broadcast on the TV show "Tastes of Europe - Dalmatia “.

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The Austrian television crew stayed in Sinj for three days and filmed episodes in the area of ​​Obrovac Sinjski - Han, the significant landscape of Rumin, Bitelić, Potravlje, Karakašica, and in the town of Sinj.

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As the show is based on traditional cuisine and customs, the ORF team filmed the almost forgotten, and extremely healthy desserts kotonjada (quince cheese) in the family home of sisters Jadranka and Dubravka Milun, then the traditional dishes in the beautiful area of ​​the Milardović family mill in Obrovac Sinjski - Han. Here, the members of KUD Cetina prepared Sinj arambaše, tripe (šiša), and 'peka' bread under the baking bell. OPG Edo Crljen (next to the family mill Bilobrk) prepared a traditional snack with prosciutto, cheese, and fried bread.

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Zoran Markulin from Rumin instructed them in the secrets of pastoral vocation, and Ivan Knezović in Potravlje in the process of making traditional pottery with the help of a handwheel. Footage of preparing cheese from a cheesecloth was filmed in Bitelić with Ljubo Bulović's family, and in Karakašica, the family of Marija Cvitković presented the folk costume of the Cetina region, which Mrs. Marija Cvitković faithfully collects and keeps.

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Cheese from a cheesecloth and Sinj arambaše, as well as the traditional handwheel pottery from Potravlje, are three intangible cultural assets of the Republic of Croatia.

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The journalists were delighted and surprised by the potential of Inland Dalmatia. The episode will be broadcast at the end of November on the Austrian national television on the television channel ORF2.

The Sinj Tourist Board would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone for their support and successful cooperation.

For more on Inland Dalmatia, follow TCN's dedicated page

Sunday, 26 September 2021

Sinj Green Cleanup Collects 50 Tons of Waste!

September 26, 2021 - The Sinj green cleanup over the weekend collected 50 tons of various waste in the Inland Dalmatian area!

This year, the City of Sinj joined a joint, one-day action to clean illegal landfills as part of Croatia's largest environmental volunteer project, organized in sync with World Cleanup Day, reports Dalmacija Danas.

The Mayor of Sinj Miro Bulj joined numerous volunteers in the field. He announced that similar actions in the Sinj area would be organized in the future, regardless of this particular green action. 

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Employees of Čistoća Cetina Region, JVP Sinj and DVD Sinj, HGSS, mountaineers, BIOM, the Sinj Tourist Board, students of the Ivan Mažuranić Han Elementary School, and numerous associations from the Sinj area took part in the action.

More than 100 volunteers cleaned illegal dumps in the Cetina river area, from Panj to Despotuša, Sutina, the water reservoir on Radošić, Brekina Gora - Izvor Bukva, and the airport on Piket.

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Sinj volunteers collected more than 50 tons of various waste from 9 am to 1 pm 

The goal of the national campaign, which is being held for the tenth year in a row, and for the first time in Sinj, is to raise the awareness of Croatian citizens about their role in creating and disposing of waste, their healthy habits, cleaner environment, and active problem-solving approach.

The message of this year's action is that by cleaning our corner of the environment, together, we raise awareness of the human impact on the environment and the importance of responsible waste management to preserve the environment, nature, and planet Earth, and our common good.

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Mayor Miro Bulj thanked everyone for their support and assistance in organizing waste removal from illegal landfills in Sinj and recently announced new cleaning actions and stricter measures for those who pollute nature.

For more on Inland Dalmatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Wednesday, 22 September 2021

Sinj Joins World Cleanup Day with Zelena Čistka Campaign

September 22, 2021 - Sinj is joining World Cleanup Day by cleaning illegal landfills in the area this weekend!

As part of World Cleanup Day, the City of Sinj, in cooperation with numerous associations and institutions including Čistoća Cetina Region, HGSS, JVD, DVD Sinj, the Sinj Tourist Board, Biom, PD Svilaja, HPDO Koćari, PD Vukovi, Cetina Adventure Club, JU More i Krš, Croatian Forests, Kamičak, and volunteers, organizes the environmental action "Zelena Čistka - Sinj 2021."

Interested volunteers will clean several illegal landfills in the City of Sinj in cooperation with the city partners. 

After the coordination meeting on the action, locations were agreed to be cleaned of various types of waste. They include the Cetina river, from Panj to Despotuša, and the significant Sutina area landscape, with numerous illegal landfills.

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Ivan Alebic

The Cetina River will be cleaned by HGSS members with divers, while the volunteers will go to the Sutina area, where the employees of the Čistoća Cetina Region, JVD, and DVD Sinj will have the necessary equipment.

Gloves and waste bags will be provided for all volunteers. All interested parties should bring their cleaning tools (rakes, shovels, trowels).

Zelena Čistka is a national campaign to raise awareness of Croatian citizens about their role in waste generation and disposal. The campaign's culmination is cleaning illegal dumps, which will be held for the tenth year in a row in Croatia. By implementing the Zelena Čistka campaign, Croatia remains part of a larger-scale story that affects citizens' awareness of healthy habits, a cleaner environment, and an active approach to solving problems.

By cleaning our corners of the environment, we raise awareness of the human impact on the environment and the importance of responsible waste management to preserve the environment, nature, and planet Earth, which is our common good.

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The cleanup action was initially scheduled for Saturday, September 18. However, due to the bad weather conditions, it was postponed to Saturday, September 25.

Participants will gather around 09:00 at the starting locations (near the bridge on Panj and in the parking lot near Sutina).

The action will last until 13:00, after which lunch will be provided for all participants.

All interested nature lovers can join the cleaning action. Please send your application to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with the name of the action: Zelena Čistka, as well as your name and surname. 

For more on Inland Dalmatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Thursday, 19 August 2021

Kamičak Music Evenings Return to Sinj on August 21st!

August 19, 2021 - Kamičak Music Evenings return to Sinj on August 21!

Thanks to the rich tangible and intangible cultural heritage and several diverse cultural events, Sinj and the Cetina region have long been engraved in golden letters on the tourist map of Croatia. Moreover, thanks to the pursuit of sustainable tourism, the coexistence of carefully designed activities that hosts and guests equally enjoy, events in the Alkar city always attract attention and larger more audiences, although this year in a somewhat reduced form due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Such events certainly include the Music Evenings at Kamičak Fortress. Namely, at Sinj's authentic and unique Kamičak fortress with a beautiful stage under the open sky, concerts of classical but also traditional and jazz music are organized. Such an approach popularizes these, perhaps somewhat neglected, musical expressions and where better than in Sinj, a city of rich musical tradition.

The Sinj Tourist Board, with the support of the Croatian Ministry of Culture, the City of Sinj, and the Split-Dalmatia County Tourist Board, has been organizing successful and extremely well-attended concerts for several years. So far, Kamičak has welcome the Academic Accordion Orchestra "Ivan Goran Kovačić," Sara Renar, Jazz swing quintet "Repassage," Wind Quintet "Kalamos," the unique Samobor percussion ensemble "Sudar Percussion," ethno musician Dunja Knebl with the band Kololira and ethno, Nocturnal4 and Ratko Zjača, ZZ Quartet, Trio EX PONTO, and TRIO VENTUS.

This year boasts another extraordinary program because on August 21, 2021, starting at 9:30 pm and ending at 11:30 pm, young artists gathered in the Papandopulo Quartet will present the best of classical music to Sinj and its guests, and jazz music will be presented by the renowned duo Sara & Jappa Brodarić.

About the musicians:

Papandopulo Quartet - this "most important and rightfully the most exposed domestic chamber ensemble" consists of four Croatian saxophonists, Nikola Fabijanic - soprano saxophone, Gordan Tudor - alto saxophone, Goran Jurkovic - tenor saxophone, and Tomislav Zuzak - baritone. Their concerts are regularly accompanied by applause from the audience and praise from critics: "relaxation and confidence in performance, intonational precision, and richness of tonal creation, skill in various articulations, fantastic mobility and precision in both the highest and lowest registers, in a word, amazing technical skills, are the foundations on which the members of the Papandopulo Quartet build their musical expressiveness and expressiveness… That is why the Papandopulo Quartet can proudly and with dignity bear the name of one of the most versatile, most musical, and passionately dedicated to music greats of Croatian music history. " (Mirta Špoljarić, sbplus.hr, January 27, 2014)

They collaborate with many musicians, including the Zagreb Quartet, Zagreb Soloists, Zagreb Saxophone Quartet, Dragan Sremec, Ivan Batoš, Linda Mravunac-Fabijanić, and foreign eminent saxophonists such as Arno Bornkamp, ​​JeanDenis Michat, Jean-Yarstel Fourmeau quartet, and Mobilis quartet. The quartet attaches special importance to the promotion of contemporary music by Croatian and foreign authors, so they premiered, among others, compositions by Mirela Ivičević, Margareta Ferek Petrić, Ante Knešaurek, Fran Đurović, Julian Gamisch, Dubravko Palanović, Tena Ivana Borić, Krešimir Seletković Simon Vosecek, Zeljko Brkanovic, Davor Bobic, Tomislav Uhlik and Gordan Tudor.

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In 2015, the quartet released their second record, Per Quattro, and in 2017 their third album Scherzo, both released by Croata Records. 2019 was one of the most successful years for the Papandopulo Quartet. In addition to a large number of concerts, in June of the same year, they won the "Diploma of Milko Trnina" for a particularly successful and notable artistic performance at the opening of the 6th edition of the festival "Showcase of Contemporary Sound."

Sara & Jappa are a family jazz duo consisting of Željko Brodarić Jappa and Sara Brodarić, father and daughter, whose performances are based on vocal and guitar interpretations of jazz classics of the last century, which were celebrated by Broadway and Hollywood musicals and popularized by Peggy Lee, Nat King Cole, Ella Fitzgerald, Etta James, Tony Bennett, Frank Sinatra, and other legendary performers.

Known for previous achievements in other music genres, Sara & Jappa began collaborating on a family jazz project in the summer of 2016, performing since then in front of full theaters and exclusive locations across the Croatian coast. So far, Jazz Winter Wonderland and My Jazzy Valentine have performed at the City Puppet Theater Split and the Croatian National Theater Split and the Marin Držić Theater in Dubrovnik, the Croatian National Theater Zadar, and the Hvar Historical Theater.

They gained a loyal audience with their summer cycle of concerts called "Jazz Summer Nights," performing at unique locations such as the Cedulin Palace in Zadar, Central Park Club in Hvar, the historic center of Trogir, as well as summer festivals and events such as the Festival Soli Ston 2018  and the astronomical-musical event "Konavle under the stars 2018" in Lovorno Polje.

In August 2018, Sara & Jappa crowned their summer tour in their hometown with an extremely successful "Split at Night Jazz" concert, which made the impressive Cellars of Diocletian's Palace the scenery for a sold-out summer jazz spectacle. This concert inspired them to organize the first edition of the Split at Night Jazz Festival at the same place exactly a year later, at the end of August 2019. The great performances, including the performance of the festival, hosts Sara and Jappa and the exceptional response of the audience, giving them the wind in their sails to organize a new edition of the jazz festival in Diocletian's Cellars this summer as well.

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Sara & Jappa concluded 2019 by opening JazZima!, a jazz festival in Split's GKL, another sold-out "Jazz Winter Wonderland," followed in February 2020 by the equally successful fourth edition of their popular concert "My Jazzy Valentine." 

The concerts at Kamičak Fortress will take place with the implementation of the recommended measures of the Civil Protection Headquarters and the NZJZ. Admission is free, but due to the current pandemic situation, seating is limited to preserve all visitors' health.

For more on Inland Dalmatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Monday, 16 August 2021

1715 Battle of Sinj Reenactment: A Summer Treat for Sinj Town (PHOTOS)

August 16, 2021 - The 1715 Battle of Sinj reenactment was successfully held in the center of Sinj!

In memory of the glorious defense of Sinj from the Ottoman invasion, the 1715 Battle of Sinj and the events that preceded it were staged this year as well. The Sinj Tourist Board organized the play with the support of the City of Sinj and Split-Dalmatia County and in cooperation with the Shrine of Our Miraculous Lady of Sinj, the Alkar Knights Society, and KU Marko Marulić.

The plot of the play took place in two acts. The first act began at the Market Square, King Tomislav Square, where the Ottoman conquest of the town of Sinj, the burning of the church, and the enslavement of the regiment were staged. A handful of defenders with the image of the Mother of God took refuge in the Sinj Fortress, the easy conquest of which was announced by the arrogant Mustafa-pasha Celic, who triumphantly passed in a carriage with his entourage. This year, the play was enriched by the performance of the Brodosplit City Choir under the direction of maestro Vlado Sunko and excellent lighting and sound effects.

In the second act, which took place this year in the original ambiance of Alkarski dvori, the Defense Council decided to defend its city despite a more numerous and superior enemy. With the help of Our Lady, the Ottomans were eventually defeated, and the threat of the enemy removed. Led by Fr. Pavle Vučković, embodied by Fr. Hrvatin Gabrijel Jurišić, joyful and grateful believers have since celebrated their Protector with even greater zeal.

The 1715 Battle of Sinj is a unique stage spectacle that, with its originality and drama, instantly transports the spectators to the year of the glorious victory that determined the future of the city. The author of the dramatic template is prof. Velimir Borkovic. The play was realized in collaboration with the Shrine of Our Miraculous Lady of Sinj and the Alkar Knights Society. About a hundred participants contributed to its successful performance this year as well.

The main characters are Fr. Hrvatin Gabrijel Jurišić, Marko Duvnjak, Bruno Barać, Marijan Grbavac, Damir Žane Alebić, Saša Miletić, Bobo Delonga, Dijana Ivić Kundid, Bože Pavić, Sanja Gojun Vučković, Vedrana Vrgoč, Mirjana Živalj, Anđelka Vučković, Marija Mandac, Dino Vukovic, Dubravka Vukovic, Dusan Roguljic and Marko Jelincic. In addition to amateur theater actors, members of the historical unit of the Kliški Uskoks, the Veterans' Cooperative Patriot, the Croatian Mountain Rescue Service, the Association of Rera and Gusle from Otok, the Association for the Preservation of the Heritage of the Cetina Region, Sinjski Ferali and Marko Vuković, and Alkar Stable horses led by Mr. Andrija Ribičić. Branka Marinović and Vesna Bader took care of the staging and costumes. The director of the play is the prominent theater, television, and film actor Robert Kurbaša. The assistant director is Bruno Barać, and the playwright and producer are Luka Perković.

This year's performance is also dedicated to all Croatian veterans and those who helped make the show happen but are no longer with us.

"We truly thank all employees and members of VAD, the Monastery of Our Lady of Sinj, Cetina Region Čistoća - Sinj, KUS - Sinj, Kamička dd, the Croatian Mountain Rescue Service Sinj, members of the Veterans Cooperative Patriot, the historical unit Kliški uskoki, Association Gusle from Otok, the Association for the Preservation of the Heritage of the Cetina Region, the Sinjski Ferali Association, the Sinj branch of the Red Cross, the SRMA Association, KGK Alkar 1968, KU Marko Marulić, Ms. Vesna Bader and Branka Marinović for scenography and props, staff and restaurant owner Alkarski dvori, Sinj communal wardens, students, employees of TIC and all those who selflessly helped the successful realization of this stage spectacle. Furthermore, special thanks go to Mr. Vlado Sunko and Brodosplit, who, with this year's performance of the famous cantata to Our Lady of Sinj, magnified this play and thus gave it a new dimension in a unique way. Furthermore, the media and the audience who, despite pandemic conditions, participated successfully and patiently in the implementation of all recommended measures of the Civil Protection Headquarters as well as the NZJZ to preserve health, as well as our students (TIC staff) who took care of it," said the Sinj Tourist Board. 

For more on Inland Dalmatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

 

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