Friday, 11 June 2021

Adriatic Counties To Be Removed From Slovenian Red List

June 11, 2021 - Good news after it was established yesterday that Slovenian tourists would not need to go into self-isolation when returning from the Adriatic counties, according to the decision of the Slovenian Government to remove the Croatian coast from its red list, which will take effect from tomorrow.

At yesterday's session, the Slovenian Government decided that the Adriatic Croatia administrative unit is no longer on their red list. The counties of Istria, Primorje-Gorski Kotar, Lika-Senj, Zadar, Šibenik-Knin, Split-Dalmatia, and Dubrovnik-Neretva were thus removed from the list of countries and areas with a high risk of coronavirus infection, reports hrturizam.hr.

Namely, in areas not on the dark red or red list, there is no high risk of SARS-CoV-2 infection, so a person coming from such an area can enter Slovenia without being sent into mandatory self-isolation if they submit proof that they've been in the area.

Apart from Croatia, Switzerland, the Vatican, the Austrian administrative unit of Tyrol, Cyprus, the Czech Republic, Luxembourg, Germany, Poland, Slovakia, and the Portuguese Azores were removed from the red list of European Union countries at yesterday's session. Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, and Montenegro are no longer on the same list comprised of third countries. The administrative units of Pannonian Croatia, the City of Zagreb, and Northern Croatia are still on the red list. This means that a person coming from these areas in Croatia is quarantined for ten days due to possible infection with the SARS-CoV-2 virus upon returning to Slovenia

The decision to remove the Adriatic counties from their red list, made by the Slovenian Government yesterday, will take effect on Saturday, June 12th.

For all you need to know about coronavirus specific to Croatia, including travel, border, and quarantine rules, as well as the locations of testing centers and vaccination points across the country, make sure to bookmark our dedicated COVID-19 section and choose your preferred language.

Follow the latest travel updates and COVID-19 news from Croatia HERE.

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

Friday, 19 February 2021

Magnitude 2.9 Earthquake Rocks Senj Area

ZAGREB, 19 February, 2021 - A magnitude 2.9 earthquake was registered near Senj at 2.43 p.m. on Friday, Croatia's Seismological Survey said.

 The epicentre was northeast of the coastal town.

Sunday, 20 December 2020

Retired Bishop Mile Bogovic Dies from COVID-19

ZAGREB, Dec 20, 2020 - Bishop Mile Bogovic of Gospic-Senj died at the age of 81 on Saturday from the consequences of COVID-19, 16 days after the onset of symptoms, the Gospic-Senj Diocese said.

Msgr Bogovic was born in 1939 in Cerovac near Slunj in Karlovac County. He was ordained a priest of the Rijeka-Senj Archdiocese on 29 June 1964 and retired in 2016.

By dividing the territory of the Rijeka-Senj Archdiocese on 25 May 2000, Pope John Paul II established a new diocese with its seat in Gospic, appointing Msgr Mile Bogovic the first bishop of the new Gospic-Senj Diocese.

Sunday, 13 December 2020

LiPO Regional Party Established

ZAGREB, Dec 13, 2020 - A new regional party, called LiPO, was established in Lika-Senj County on Saturday, and its leader, county head Darko Milinovic, said that with 1,500 members it was the strongest regional centre-right party in Croatia.

Milinovic said the party's statute, adopted today, allowed for the formation of factions.

The party's name, LiPO, is an acronym formed from the initial letters of the names of the regions that constitute Lika-Senj County - Lika, the Croatian Littoral and islands.

Milinovic said that the founding assembly was held at six locations in Gospic, Otocac, Novalja and Senj due to epidemiological restrictions.

With some 1,500 members, LiPO is the strongest regional centre-right party in Croatia, and the second strongest regional party after the IDS, with more registered members than Bridge, GLAS, We Can! and the HDSSB, which have deputies in the parliament, said Milinovic.

Deputy party leader Ante Dabo, the mayor of Novalja on the island of Pag, said that LiPO would be an inclusive regional party and a partner to the government.

Wednesday, 10 April 2019

From Osijek to Makarska, Booking.com Users Rate Croatian Hosts

What do Croatian and international travellers think of their hosts when staying in private accommodation? How do they rate them, how much interaction is too much and are privacy and inside information the key?

As Lea Balenovic/Novac writes on the 9th of April, 2019, almost two thirds of Croats believe that the host is a key factor when staying in an accommodation facility, and those who are the best rated in the Republic of Croatia, both from domestic and foreign guests, can be found in in Rakovica, Osijek, Bibinje, Korenica, Kaštela, Makarska, Brela, Senj, Trogir and Podstrana.

They are the results of research conducted by the world's leading rental company, Booking.com, on a sample of 21,500 travellers worldwide. As the survey showed, 63 percent of international travellers and 62 percent of Croatian travellers think that their stay was better because of their engagement of the host who did everything they could to make it a better stay for them.

Most travellers want to feel "at home," as they have indicated in such surveys. For 62 percent of international travellers, the main advantage of non-hotel accommodation is the ability to take advantage of the knowledge and information available from the host and decide to stay in a property owned by someone who actually comes from the region in which the property is located. The same goes for 48 percent of Croatian travellers.

Nearly half of the international travellers who partook in the survey, or more specifically 45 percent of them, and 59 percent of Croatian travellers consider the local knowledge and information at their disposal from their host important for their overall budget because they hope to be given insider advice that will help them save some cash and avoid potential tourist traps.

However, while it seems that all travellers who took part in this survey generally consider the same things to be significant, each traveller is looking for a different type of engagement from their host. Therefore, some travellers are satisfied with a simple warm welcome, while others have slightly higher expectations from their hosts.

For example, 52 percent of international passengers and 40 percent of Croatian travellers believe that their host should only be seen once during their stay in order to make them feel welcome, and more than a third of international travellers and almost the same number of Croatian travellers expect their hosts to contact them only during their arrival, registration, and then again when they eventually check out and leave the premises.

What is often even more challenging to hosts is the fact that many travellers also expect them to have some sort of sixth sense and know just how much of a personal touch is needed for each traveller. 69 percent believe that hosts should intuitively know the right amount of time they should be spending with their guests, and that is also what 73 percent of Croatian travellers think. For four out of five international travellers and the same number of travellers from Croatia that means respecting their need for personal space, which means that the feeling of privacy is key.

The hosts also agree. Namely, nearly 80 percent of Croatian hosts think that the most important thing for guests is to be able to properly ensure their privacy.

"Our research reveals that it's very important for the owners and managers of accommodation facilities to find a balance which ensures the best experience, regardless of whether guests are staying in a vacation home, an apartment, in accommodation with their hosts or any other type of facility," explained Olivier Grémillon, the vice president of Booking.com, adding the fact thatt "what is crystal clear is that there is nothing like the ability of ordinary people to turn something into an unforgettable experience."

Make sure to follow our dedicated lifestyle and travel pages for much more.

 

Click here for the original article by Lea Balenovic for Novac/Jutarnji

Thursday, 4 April 2019

World's Biggest Welcome in Croatia: Day 9 - Senj to Begovo Razdolje (Bike, Foot)

April 4, 2019 - Putting Croatian adventure tourism on the map, with the biggest welcome in the world. Day 9 of this incredible 2011 adrenaline trip covering 2,500 km along the Croatian coast. 

The World's Biggest Welcome, an ambitious adventure tourism project in 2011 in Croatia enters Day 9 of this 2019 appreciation of one of the finest tourism promotion projects ever in Croatia.  

The plan? To showcase the diversity and fabulous offer of adventure tourism in Croatia by following a GPS route the length of the Croatian coast in the shape of the word 'Welcome' - thereby creating the biggest welcome in the world from a hospitable tourism country. 

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Senj - Nehaj fortress 

Day 9 moved on foot and by bicycle from Senj to Begovo Razdolje.

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65 kilometres for the day: 35 km bicycle ride from Senj to Samarske stijene, followed by 30 km on foot from Samarske stijene to Begovo Razdolje to continue forming the ‘E’ in ‘Welcome'.

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The journey started in Senj, accompanied by a bit of the famous bura. 

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Daniel Lacko above Senj approaching the wind power plant Vrataruša.

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Klarićevac, and one of the many abandoned houses. 

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And the snow coming down near Vodice.

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The group then met Aleksa Tomic who played Vuco's classic "Volim piti i ljubiti". Tomici used to have 600 residents, and back in 2011, there were only a few older residents.

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Lacko coming through the Bijele stijene cliffs, through a lot of mud and snow. 

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Continuing on foot through even more snow. 

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In some parts, the snow hit their waists.

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Samarske stijene - Ratkovo shelter.

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And finally, their final destination for the day - the Jastreb hotel in Begovo Razdolje. Begovo Razdolje is the most populated settlement in Croatia (1078m).

A key part of the project was promoting tourism, and the official website has details of the key places visited during the day. 

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Senj.

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White and Samarian cliffs.

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Begovo Razdolje.

You can see the entire project on the Welcome website, as well as much more of Luka Tambaca's stunning photography on the Welcome Facebook page

Tune in tomorrow for Day 10, as Lacko moves from Begovo Razdolje to Njivice by bike and kayak. 

To follow the whole project from the start, follow the dedicated TCN page

Wednesday, 3 April 2019

World's Biggest Welcome in Croatia: Day 7 (Off), Day 8 - Malinska to Senj (Bike, Foot, Kayak)

April 3, 2019 - Putting Croatian adventure tourism on the map, with the biggest welcome in the world. Day 8 of this incredible 2011 adrenaline trip covering 2,500 km along the Croatian coast. 

The World's Biggest Welcome, an ambitious adventure tourism project in 2011 in Croatia enters Day 8 of this 2019 appreciation of one of the finest tourism promotion projects ever in Croatia.  

The plan? To showcase the diversity and fabulous offer of adventure tourism in Croatia by following a GPS route the length of the Croatian coast in the shape of the word 'Welcome' - thereby creating the biggest welcome in the world from a hospitable tourism country. 

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Off day in Nijvice

Day 8 moved on foot, bicycle, and kayak from Malinska to Senj.

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57 kilometres for the day: 25 km bicycle ride from Malinska to Stara Baška, followed by 10 km on foot from Stara Baška to Baška, before 12 km of kayaking from Baška to Senj to begin forming the 'E' of 'Welcome'. 

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After some much-needed rest, Day 8 kicked off in Malinska.

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With a stop for petrol in Krk. 

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Lačko pedaling away in Punat on Krk. 

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Sheep on the road to Stara Baška.

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And the hiking route on the way to Batomalj. 

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On the plateau between Baška and Stara Baška, father and son duo Zeljko and Martin Ivnik joined in on the walk.

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Another look at the plateau. 

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From Baška, Daniel set off on a 12 km long rowing trip to Senj. 

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With the windmills above Senj in the backdrop.

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Upon arrival, a Senj shepherd showed off a newborn lamb. 

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And a well-deserved meal to end at Lavlji dvor tavern in Senj. Lačko and master Željko checking out the skampi and St. Peter's fish.

A key part of the project was promoting tourism, and the official website has details of the key places visited during the day. 

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Malinska.

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Baška.

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Senj.

You can see the entire project on the Welcome website, as well as much more of Luka Tambaca's stunning photography on the Welcome Facebook page

Tune in tomorrow for Day 9, as Lačko moves from Senj to Begovo Razdolje by bike and on foot. 

To follow the whole project from the start, follow the dedicated TCN page

Tuesday, 2 April 2019

Infrastructure and EU Funds: Port and Breakwater Renovation for Senj

Along with the current works on the renovation of the Senj harbour, the Senj Port Authority has begun to develop projects for the extension of Senj's port, so that the breakwaters can be lengthened.

As Morski writes on the 2nd of April, 2019, the Điga breakwater, more specifically the Sv. Marija breakwater, would be extended by a further one hundred metres, adjusted to the length of Jadrolinija's ferries, and the Hungarian riva (waterfront), would be extended by another thirty metres. The construction of a brand new waterfront instead of Senj's current wooden waterfront would add another pier to the southernmost part of the harbour, opposite to Tičak house. According to the conceptual solution which has been drawn up for the project, this operation would cost around 110 million kuna net, and VAT still needs to be added to that figure, Novi list writes.

An assessment on the environmental impact for this project has already been prepared, which is already in process at the Ministry of Environmental Protection, and after the release of the competent ministry's observations, what further steps which need to be taken will be known, eventually followed by the issuance of the required building permits.

''Breakwaters can be co-funded from EU funds and we've already asked for this and have received a firm opinion on it, and internal arrangements such as the 300 new communal berths can be funded from national funds and from the Port Authority's budget,'' said Senj's port authority director Predrag Dešić, adding that with the realisation of this project, Senj's port would boast much greater functionality.

In the port part of the Hungarian waterfront, the conditions for accommodating tourist ships and smaller cruisers would be created, which would substantially restore the basic role of the harbour, while ferries to nearby islands and liner ships would have their place at Điga. After this extension, Senj could be a significant port for tourists from Istria and from the islands, such as Lošinj and Cres, who would like to visit Plitvice Lakes because a combination by sea to Senj and buses to Plitvice would shorten their journey by about two hours, make it much more enjoyable, and the actual visit to Plitvice would last longer. This is a very desirable combination, given that road traffic, especially in the summer, is slow and cumbersome.

New funding in the amount of three million kuna, approved by the Ministry of Maritime Affairs, Transport and Infrastructure for the Senj Port Authority this year, will be intended for the repair of the main harbour, which is essentially a continuation of the works on the current project of renovating Senj harbour as a whole.

Make sure to follow our dedicated business page for more.

 

Click here for the original article by Dorotea Prpic for Novi list

Saturday, 26 January 2019

Storm Chasers Brave Bura... and Drink Wine (VIDEO)

If you were anywhere along Croatia's Adriatic coast on Friday, chances are, you felt the wrath of the bura, our beloved northern wind. The windiest parts were the sub-mountainous channels, where during the early evening hours, the impact was about 180 km/h. In the Dalmatia region, the bura gusted in Zadar County’s Maslenica at a raging 166 km/h, Dalmacija Danas reported on January 25, 2019. 

The Crometeo storm chasers team decided to brave the bura and venture out to Gornje Sitno in the municipality of Split on Friday evening. With a measuring instrument on hand, the crew recorded a bura impact of 174 km/h at about 10 pm, marking values in the range of the strongest wind speed ever measured in the city of Split (whose measuring station is on Marjan), though this location is known for being more powerful than in the city itself.

You can see photos of the storm chasers' adventure here

A bit further up on the Adriatic coast in the town of Senj, the bura measured 189 km/h! The Crometeo storm chasers of Senj also decided to brave the wind, but this time, they chose to demonstrate just how brutal it is by attempting to do an ordinary activity - like drinking a glass of wine. 

It turned out to be quite an extreme sport that requires a lot of skill.

"Do not try this at home, these are professionals," the group could be heard saying in the video. 

In less than 24 hours, the video saw more than 1,000 likes and was viewed 665 times!

As expected, the bura forced a lot of road closures around the coast, and even the Dr. Franjo Tuđman bridge in Dubrovnik for specific vehicles. Fortunately, the bura has (mostly) passed, and we have a sunny and bright Saturday along our Croatian coast. 

To read more about lifestyle in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page

Sunday, 2 December 2018

Chinese Investment in Croatia: First 160 Million Euro Project Begins

As Gordana Grgas/Novac.hr writes on the 1st of December, 2018, after much talk and many announcements, the official launch of the first Chinese investment in Croatia took place last week, which should reach the staggering amount of 160 million euro in two years.

This massive foreign investment is an interesting one, not only because of the amount, and not only because it's pioneering in its nature, but because when looked at in its wider context, it's a big part of the strategic Chinese "One Belt, One Way" initiative. It certainly ''lit up'' on the ever-watchful radar of the European Commission, which overlooks investments from third countries, it also naturally drew the attention of all those who look at China's investments in Croatia in a more geopolitical context. Croatian Prime Minister Andrej Plenković presented it as part of "project-oriented cooperation between the two countries".

The project itself is the construction of a wind farm near Senj, which was inaugurated by a huge Chinese construction company, Norinco International Cooperation, one year after signing a contract to take over a majority stake in the Croatian company - Energija projekt. This 32 million euro transaction was also recorded in a large analysis of both realised and announced Chinese investments across Europe, which was published by Bloomberg in the spring, pointing out that over the last ten years alone, the figures of such huge Chinese investments reached an incredible 300 billion euro.

The CEO of the Peking-based Norinco International Cooperation, Wang Yitong, was present at the opening ceremony in Senj last week. Otherwise, the company is listed on the stock exchange (the Shenzhen Stock Exchange), but is actually owned by the state. The situation is rather complicated, but when it is looked at objectively, it's clear that Norinco is part of the gigantic China North Industries Corporation, which was founded back in the 1980s and is among the largest state-owned conglomerates in terms of assets and revenues, and is the world's best known company for the production of weapons of all kinds.

Since 1999, it has been a part of an even larger group of companies, the China North Industries Group Corporation (CNGC). It is made up of fifty companies with a total of about 280,000 employees, it accounts for more than 40 percent of its revenue outside of China, operates in 40 countries, and is engaged in research and development, as well as in the production of weapons and military equipment. It is also involved in mining and oil businesses.

This group, abbreviated as just CNGC, is on this year's Fortune magazine's list at 140th place on of the list of global top-ranked companies, estimated at 64 billion dollars. As was published by Jane's Defense Weekly, CNGC has been on the list of twenty state-run Chinese firms for restructuring since last year, when the Chinese Government announced that it would accelerate a reform program to introduce "mixed ownership". This is a measure of privatisation, and from the huge group, as was announced last year, twelve companies are listed on stock exchanges from the automotive, electronics, and chemical industries.

Owing to above, Croatia did not enter into the Senj project via a private company, but with a company associated with the very leaders of the Chinese state, which is a part of an important conglomerate. In Brussels, the somewhat expected raising of eyebrows has so far been following and challenging the major Croatian contract with the Chinese to carry out works on the long awaited Pelješac Bridge. The strategic project is cofinanced by money from the European Union budget, and Brussels isn't happy that the Chinese will be the ones to built it.

Now, in a direct Chinese investment in Croatia, into the energy sector (several similar ones have already been realised in the EU), the Chinese will, in a period of two years, build 39 wind turbines with a total power of 156 megawatts under Velebit, while Brinje and Senj will see 5.5 million kuna a year spent on wind energy, Croatian subcontractors will be part of the construction work.

For the takeover of Energija projekt, over which the former owners have been holding disputes, the Chinese have engaged the American consultancy firm Norton Rose Fulbright, and the process was brought to an end and registered at the Commercial Court in Rijeka back in September this year. Thus, the Chinese company has also taken over the rights to build and manage the wind power plant near Senj, and the consultants' belief is that Norinco is "taking the initial position for entering the European Union market and then expanding and increasing its market share within the EU, and obtaining references in a new business environment". Plenković has expressed his hopes for Norinco to be the predecessor to other Chinese companies and further direct Chinese investment in Croatia, often holds talks about intensifying relations, and is preparing a meeting on the subject which will be held in Croatia in the spring of 2019.

Geopolitical experts, like one particular Berlin think tank, announced earlier this year that China's investments, especially when they are made by state-owned companies, should always be looked at as an attempt to secure influence over European Union politics. But should Plenković really worry about that now? Probably not; direct foreign investment is not so common, and whether or not Chinese companies will appear on projects such as construction of railway lines, more specifically what will happen with the Chinese investment in the Port of Zadar and the cooperation between Chinese and Croatian construction companies and such, is yet to be seen.

During current moments on the international scene, China continues to attract large amounts of attention as a global creditor, not just as an investor, and despite Chinese investments in Croatia, the country doesn't have such an experience under its belt. Yet.

Recently, the New York Times published a text entitled "The World, Built by China", which analyses as many as 600 projects in as many as 112 countries worldwide which were somehow funded by the Chinese over the last decade, from gas pipelines to bridges, roads to railway lines, and many more. Many of these projects are part of the strategic "One Belt, One Way" initiative (often described as the Silk Road for the 21st Century), and in the aforementioned text, the Chinese strategy is even compared with the American plan after the Second World War, yet describing it to be ''brave, expensive, and far more risky".

Make sure to follow our business page for more news on Chinese investment in Croatia and much more.

 

Click here for the original article by Gordana Grgas on Novac.hr (Jutarnji)

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