Wednesday, 29 June 2022

Five Coastal Towns Outside Sibenik to Visit This Summer

June 29, 2022 - Don't get us wrong, there's more than enough to see or do to stay in this great and historic Dalmatian city, but if you find your adventurous spirit calling you to explore and see some other places, you might want to start with these five coastal towns outside Sibenik.

Tisno

We'll start north of Sibenik, in the picturesque village of Tisno, known for its peculiar location separating the mainland of Sibenik-Knin County from the nearby island of Murter. Tisno even extends to much of the southern part of the island. Tisno can be an ideal destination for families looking for a quiet place to enjoy, as well as for young people looking for renowned parties and electronic music festivals. Tisno also has some great cultural heritage manifested in its traditional construction of wooden boats. There's also a good number of beaches on which you can cool off.

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Image: Tisno Tourist Board/Facebook

Tribunj

Between Tisno and Vodice lies the beautiful town of Tribunj, known as a peaceful destination with good beaches, the small islands of Lukovnik and Logorun, its famous regional donkey race, as well as being the birthplace of famous and esteemed pop-folk singer Miso Kovac. Likewise, Tribunj is an excellent place to have a coffee or a few beers on its waterfront, ideal both at dawn or when the sun goes down in the late afternoon hours.

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Photo: Mario Romulić

Vodice

Vodice is only a 16-minute drive from the city and is definitely one of the most popular coastal towns outside Sibenik during the summer thanks to its spectacular hotels, beaches, and water resorts. We doubt that you'll actually want to leave Vodice, but you will want to know that it's also a transit point for ferries that travel to the beautiful islands of Prvik and Zlarin. In addition, if you aren't sure when is best to visit Vodice, you might want to go on the 4th of August, when the most important festival in town, ''Vodička fešta'', traditionally takes place.

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Image: Vodice Tourist Board

Primošten

Passing by Sibenik and heading 35 minutes to the south of it by car, you'll find yourself in perhaps one of the most popular destinations not only in the entire county but also on the entire southern Adriatic coast: Primosten. You may not have known that Primosten used to be a town on the mainland, but in order to protect the frontier islet from Ottoman invasion back in the mid-16th century, walls and towers were built that eventually linked the islet to the mainland, giving Primosten its particular form of a small peninsula. The beaches near Primosten are nothing short of gorgeous, especially Raduca, considered one of the most beautiful in the whole country. Primosten is also well known for its spectacular vineyards, which are a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

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Photo: Tál László/Flickr

Rogoznica

We'll end our list of coastal towns near Sibrnik near Primosten, in a great tourist destination during the summer season: Rogoznica. Perfect for any type of tourist as it has a large number of camping sites, hotels, private lodgings, a beautiful marina and countless pristine beaches. In addition, if something adds special value to Rogoznica, it's its location that protects it from the winds. Likewise, Rogoznica is also known for its very impressive Dragon's Eye Lake and also for its lavender labyrinth, both of which you must visit when there.

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Image: Rogoznica Tourist Board

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

Tuesday, 28 June 2022

Croatia Ferry Guide 2022: From Šibenik to Obonjan, Vodice, Žirje, and More

June 28, 2022 -  In the newest TCN series, we take a look at the destinations you can visit by ferry from the main Croatian ports. In this fourth installment of our Croatia Ferry Guide 2022, where to go from the port of Šibenik?

When advertising the Adriatic Sea and the Croatian islands abroad, the experience of being on board a sailboat, yacht, or catamaran is usually highlighted. However, there is no destination a Croatian ferry can't reach, and why not mention that it's totally worth saving a good amount of euros on sailboat rentals and crews?

Today we tell you more about the island destinations you can reach from the ferry port of Šibenik.

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Photo: Mario Romulić

First of all, how to buy your ferry tickets? There are three ways. The first is via the official Jadrolinija website. In it, you can not only see the updated sailing schedules, but you can also buy your tickets online. Simply choose the port of departure, the port of destination, and the date of your trip, and you will find the available times. Once you have chosen the time and the number of tickets, in addition to completing all your personal information, you can proceed to pay for your tickets online with a credit or debit card.

The second way is through the official Jadrolinija mobile app, available on the Apple App Store and Google Playstore for Android. The application is very easy to use and, just like on the website, just select the port of departure and you will be able to see the ports that you can travel to from the one you selected. The process is very similar, and you will find that it is even more comfortable and intuitive to use. Payment also allows the use of credit and debit cards.

Finally, the third type of payment is the most traditional and has its benefits. All ferry ports in Croatia have a Jadrolinija office, where you can go to buy your tickets in person. Sometimes one can be a bit confused before buying their tickets both on the website and in the app, so having a Jadrolinija agent to guide you is a great help.

Where is the Šibenik ferry port located? The ferry port of Šibenik is located in the center of the city. Six minutes walk from the iconic cathedral of Saint Jacob, and three minutes from the Robert Visania Park.

Kaprije

Kaprije is one of the furthest islands in the Šibenik archipelago.

Ferry line 532 (Šibenik - Zlarin - Kaprije - Žirje) leaves for Kaprije every day, making two trips from Monday to Saturday, and only one trip on Sunday. From Monday to Saturday, one ferry leaves from Šibenik at 11:30 am and arrives in Kaprije at 12:35 pm, and the second ferry leaves at 16:30 pm and arrives in Kaprije at 17:35 pm. The only ferry leaving for Kaprije on Sunday leaves at 11:30 am and arrives at 12:35 pm.

The price of the ferry ticket for adults is 31 kunas, while for children (from 3 to 12 years old) it is 15.5 kunas.

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Photo: Roman Klementschitz/Wikimedia Commons

Obonjan

Obonjan is a small island located east of the island of Zlarin. Starting July 1st, one ferry will depart from Šibenik on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays in the direction of Obonjan, via line 532 (Šibenik - Zlarin - Kaprije - Žirje). The ferry departs at 8:30 am and arrives in Obonjan at 9:10 am. The price of the ferry ticket for adults is 25 kunas, while for children (from 3 to 12 years old) it is 12.5 kunas.

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Photo: Ante Pletikosić/Wikimedia Commons

Prvić Luka

Prvić Luka is located south on the island of Prvić, one of the first islands after crossing the Saint Ante channel.

Every day, ships leave Šibenik for Prvić Luka. From Monday to Saturday, up to five trips are made on line 505 (Vodice - Šibenik), while on Sundays only three. From Monday to Saturday, the schedule of the ships leaving Šibenik for Prvić Luka is as follows: the first one leaves at 5:30 am and arrives at 6:25 am, the second one leaves at 9:30 am and arrives at 10:20 am, the third leaves at 12:40 pm and arrives at 13:20 pm, the fourth leaves at 15:40 pm and arrives at 16:20 pm, and the fifth and last ship leaves at 19:30 pm and arrives at 20:05 pm. The Sunday schedule is as follows: the first ship leaves at 6:35 am and arrives at 7:35 am, the second leaves at 9:00 am and arrives at 9:35 am, and the third and last ship departs at 20:45 pm and arrives at 21:25 pm.

The price of the ferry ticket for adults is 25 kunas, while for children (from 3 to 12 years old) it is 9 kunas.

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Photo: Andres rus/Wikimedia Commons

Šepurine

Šepurine is another destination on the island of Prvić, but further north. As with Prvić Luka, line 505 (Vodice - Šibenik) is the one that goes to Šepurine.

The frequency of boat trips is the same: five from Monday to Saturday, and three on Sundays. The schedule of the boats from Monday to Saturday is as follows: the first one leaves at 5:30 am and arrives at 6:10 am, the second one leaves at 9:30 am and arrives at 10:40 am, the third leaves at 12:40 pm and arrives at 13:35 pm, the fourth leaves at 15:40 pm and arrives at 16:35 pm, and the fifth and last ship leaves at 19:30 pm and arrives at 20:20 pm. The Sunday schedule is as follows: the first ship leaves at 6:35 am and arrives at 7:20 am, the second leaves at 9:00 am and arrives at 9:50 am, and the third and last ship departs at 20:45 pm and arrives at 21:40 pm. 

The price of the ferry ticket for adults is 25 kunas, while for children (from 3 to 12 years old) it is 9 kunas.

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Photo: Hschermer/Wikimedia Commons

Vodice

Unlike other ports that we have covered in this series of articles, the port of Šibenik also has a ferry connection to a destination that is not an island: Vodice, located north of the city.

Line 505 (Vodice - Šibenik) offers four daily trips from Monday to Saturday, while only three on Sundays. The schedule of the boats from Monday to Saturday is as follows: the first one leaves at 9:30 am and arrives at 11:00 am, the second leaves at 12:40 pm and arrives at 13:50 pm, the third leaves at 15:40 pm and arrives at 16:50 pm, and the fourth and last ship leaves at 19:30 pm and arrives at 20:45 pm. The Sunday schedule is as follows: the first ship leaves at 6:35 am and arrives at 7:05 am, the second leaves at 9:00 am and arrives at 10:15 am, and the third and last ship departs at 20:45 pm and arrives at 22:00 pm.

The price of the ferry ticket for adults is 26 kunas, while for children (from 3 to 12 years old) it is 11 kunas.

Zlarin

Zlarin is one of the largest islands in the Šibenik archipelago, known for its quiet beaches and historic port.

The ferry line 505 (Vodice - Šibenik) is one of Jadrolinija's lines that takes passengers to the island of Zlarin. From Monday to Saturday, five trips are made from the port of Šibenik, and four on Sundays. The schedule of the ships leaving Šibenik for Žlarin is as follows: the first one leaves at 5:30 am and arrives at 6:40 am, the second one leaves at 9:30 am and arrives at 9:55 am, the third leaves at 12:40 pm, and arrives at 13:05 pm, the fourth leaves at 15:40 pm and arrives at 16:05 pm, and the fifth and last ship leaves at 19:30 pm and arrives at 19:50 pm. The price of the ferry ticket for adults is 25 kunas, while for children (3 to 12 years old) it is 9 kunas.

On Tuesdays and Thursdays, there is an additional trip of ferry line 532 (Šibenik - Zlarin - Kaprije - Žirje), which departs at 11:30 am from Šibenik and arrives in Zlarin at 11:55 am. The price of the ferry ticket for adults is 25 kunas, while for children (3 to 12 years old) it is 12.5 kunas.

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Photo: Luboš Holič/Wikimedia Commons

Žirje

The island of Žirje is the farthest from the port of Šibenik. To reach the island of Žirje, two ferries on line 532 (Šibenik - Zlarin - Kaprije - Žirje) leave every day. The first departs from Šibenik at 11:30 am and arrives at 13:10 pm, and the second leaves at 16:30 pm and arrives in Žirje at 18:10 pm. The price of the ferry ticket for adults is 26 kunas, while for children (from 3 to 12 years old) it is 11 kunas.

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Photo: Roman Klementschitz/Wikimedia Commons

The ferry lines mentioned above are those with confirmed schedules for the next three months. Prices are subject to change. Visit the official Jadrolinija website for more information on other ferry lines from Šibenik.

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

Monday, 20 June 2022

Lorde Sibenik Concert Delights Fans St. Mihovila Fortress

June 20, 2022 - As part of her ''Solar Power'' tour, New Zealand singer delighted fans with a double-dose of a Lorde Sibenik concert at St. Mihovila Fortress. According to the Grammy-award singer with Croatian roots, she'd been waiting to hold a concert here for more than two years.

New Zealand singer Lorde (25), held two real spectacles in Sibenik at the St. Mihovila Fortress, and for one local Šibenik portal, she said that she had a great time and that she was delighted with her Croatian fans, reports Net.hr.

"I spent a wonderful day in Sibenik and I wanted to come to Croatia for ages, everyone here looks like my brother and sister. I'm grateful to have had an audience like this because you never know when you come somewhere what people who listen to your music look like, but all of them are so cool. Much of this album is about family, home, and history and I often think about what my kids will look like and what their future will be like. But I just feel good to be here at the top of a cliff and being able to sing about my life stories,'' said the 25-year-old singer from New Zealand.

The wait for a Lorde Sibenik concert, or indeed a Croatian concert of any kind, had been on for two years.

Her parents were also at the concert

"I have been waiting for this concert for more than two years. When we started the tour, I asked everyone to go to the two countries where my family comes from: Croatia and Ireland," she said.

Lorde's name is Ella Maria Lani Yelich-O'Connor, and the mother's family has its roots in Dalmatia. Her parents Sonja Yelich and Vic O'Connor were also present at her concert in Sibenik .

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Sunday, 19 June 2022

International Children's Festival Kicks Off in Šibenik

ZAGREB, 19 June 2022- The 62nd International Children's Festival began in Šibenik on Saturday evening with the "At last an orchestra" musical play performed by the Zagreb Philharmonic Orchestra and directed by Petra and Paola Radin.

The 18 June - 2 July festival will feature 27 shows, 21 foreign performances in streets and squares, 14 domestic performances, 12 film screenings, four exhibitions, seven book launches, four sports programmes, and 47 workshops for more than 1,000 children.

Ten states will participate in the programme - Spain, Sweden, the Netherlands, Germany, Slovenia, the Czech Republic, Austria, Poland, Portugal, and Ukraine.

This year the festival is hosting 150 children from Ukraine, some of whom will be part of the audience and some, pupils from an art school in Lviv, will perform.

The opening of the festival was attended by Culture Minister Nina Obuljen Koržinek.

The festival is taking place under the auspices of President Zoran Milanović and with the financial support of the Culture Ministry.

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Saturday, 18 June 2022

62nd International Children's Festival Kicks Off Tonight in Šibenik

June 18, 2022 - After the dress rehearsal last night on the summer stage in front of the Cathedral of St. James in Šibenik, now everything is ready for the grand opening of the 62nd International Children's Festival in Šibenik tonight from 21:15.

Šibenski reports that the 62nd International Children's Festival will be opened by the musical play "Finally the Orchestra", directed by Petra and Paola Radin, performed by the Zagreb Philharmonic, and will be attended by the Minister of Culture and Media of the Republic of Croatia, Nina Obuljen Koržinek, Hello little ones, and participants of the Drama Studio and Workshop Ivana Jelić at the Croatian National Theater in Šibenik, under whose auspices the MDF is held.

''Everything is ready. It was quite stressful to listen to it all because I was standing behind the stage and I didn’t see it all. We did a really good job. The play is interactive, the music is original, signed by Marin Rabadan. My sister and I wrote the text. There are a lot of great artists here. Dženisa Pecotić worked on costumes, Tihana Strmečki choreographed, Branko Lepen set design, props Dunja Nemčić. A team of great artists gathered around the play and the most important thing, the message of this play, is that no one stood out too much.'', said director Petra Radin.

Already last night, many children with radiant faces and their parents were sitting in the audience. Petra Radin, in addition to directing the play, is also directing the ceremony opening. That alone was enough to bring a smile to the audience's face and not hide their delight at what they hear and see, but join and participate in creating a magical atmosphere that adorns the MDF and the summer stage under the stars. The reaction of the audience to the opening was excellent''.

''I am glad that the children received a lot of applause for the opening, not only because they are children, but because they performed it masterfully. The text is phenomenal. We did it together. The sentences just came out of them. Somehow they are fed up with everything that has happened in the last two years and that they have had to endure. They wanted to say it out loud, they wanted to fight for their rights, to explain to their parents that it was time to listen to them. And that is true. The message is to all of us that we need to play more, that we don’t have to be so serious, and worried. That we must breathe, listen to each other and listen to the nature around us and live in coexistence. (...)'', said Morana Zibar.

Tickets for tonight's 62nd International Children's Festival opening have been sold out for a long time, but this year, too, MDF enjoys the support of national television, so the grand opening can be watched live on the third program of HRT.

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Saturday, 4 June 2022

Renovated Fortress of St. John in Šibenik Opened to Public

ZAGREB, 4 June 2022 - The renovated Fortress of St. John, one of the four medieval fortresses of the Croatian coastal city of Šibenik, was formally opened at a ceremony at that seaside city on Friday evening.

This fortress, built in the mid-17th century, and the other fortresses in the city were important for defense against Turkish invasion. It features a panoramic view of the town.

Addressing the ceremony, Culture Minister Nina Obuljen Koržinek said that Šibenik now has "an amazing complex of the four upgraded fortresses."

The complex includes an educational campus and other amenities for visitors, all of which will make the tourist season longer in this Adriatic city.

The minister praised Šibenik for being very successful in the investments in its cultural heritage and in its transformation.

Mayor Željko Burić recalled that the renovation of this fortress started six years ago.

The other three renovated fortresses, which are also must-see places in Šibenik, are Barone, St. Michael's Fortress, and St. Nicholas Fortress, which is one of  Šibenik's two landmarks added to the UN World Heritage List.  Apart from that fortress, the other entry is the St. James' Cathedral.

In July 2017, Šibenik's St. Nicholas Fortress and Zadar’s fortified city walls and gates were officially inscribed on UNESCO's protected world heritage list at the 41st meeting of the UNESCO World Heritage Committee in Krakow. 

The two Croatian coastal sites were inscribed as part of protected defense systems on the territory of the former Republic of Venice. Šibenik's St. Nicholas Fortress, one of the strongest fortifications on the Adriatic, and Zadar’s 3-km-long fortified city walls and gates were built in the 16th century by the then Republic of Venice as defense from invading Turks.

Šibenik's cathedral, which was built in the 15th century, won global recognition in 2000 when it entered the UNESCO World Heritage List.

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

Saturday, 4 June 2022

First Fair of Traditional Wooden Shipbuilding is Being Held on Murter

June 4, 2022 - The first fair of traditional wooden shipbuilding is being held in Betina on the island of Murter. Numerous events were prepared in three days, from a panel discussion on the future of wooden shipbuilding to a regatta and a presentation of old ship crafts.

''Nothing can be replaced by wood, as long as there is wood in the mountain, the ship can last until then'', says Ante Njemac Balin. Ante is ninety years old and the oldest is the Betina caulk, reports HRT News. He says that he also worked abroad in the shipyard of iron ships, but the wooden ones are unrivaled.

And just as an honor and thanks to all Betina shipbuilders, a fair of traditional wooden shipbuilding was organized. As a place to connect all shipbuilders and equipment manufacturers for these wooden beauties, but also the presentation of the entire island heritage.

''There are also our family members, presenting local food and drinks because all this together makes a beautiful tourist product, but it is actually a question of local identity, said Mirela Bilic, marketing manager of the Museum of Betina wooden shipbuilding.

''The education system, awarding concessions to traditional crafts is now up to state institutions and we believe that they are the ones who need to start and stabilize wooden shipbuilding, start the young generation and give them hope that there is a future in wooden shipbuilding, said Marinka Fržop, president of Betinska gajeta 1740.

''There is work, you just need to be creative and look around a little for it, and when it comes to the market, you need to be economical. We're required to be both traders and craftsmen, and it's difficult to incorporate that, but the Internet is there today - to make a living,'' says Ljubomir Ante Fržop, a Betina traditional wooden shipbuilder.

A handful of events are planned for the three days of the fair - from traditional craft workshops to the regatta of wooden traditional boats, and of this is being done as a kind of ode to Betina, along with Korčula, the most famous and oldest seat of excellent shipbuilders.

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Thursday, 2 June 2022

Greenpeace's Rainbow Warrior Anchored Off Šibenik

ZAGREB, 2 June 2022 - Rainbow Warrior, a Greenpeace boat active in supporting a number of anti-whaling, anti-nuclear testing and anti-nuclear waste dumping campaigns during the late 1970s and early 1980s, is currently visiting the Croatian city of Šibenik.

The vessel is open to the public from 2 to 4 June.

The purpose of its visit is to promote a European Citizens' Initiative (ECI) aimed at banning fossil fuel advertising and sponsorships.

This is the third visit of this ship in Croatia after it toured our country in 2014 and 2017.

For more, check out our politics section.

Sunday, 22 May 2022

HNL Round 36 Recap: 2021/22 Croatian Championship Comes to an End

May 22, 2022 - The 36th and final round of the Croatian First League was held on May 20 and 21. Dinamo already clinched the title last weekend, though the season ended with the Dinamo-Hajduk derby at Maksimir Stadium in Zagreb. Here is our HNL round 36 recap. 

Istra 1961 v. Slaven Belupo (3:1)

Istra and Belupo opened the 36th round on Friday, May 20, in Pula. 

While the first half went without goals, Beljo put Istra ahead in the 48th minute for 1:0. Bande made it 2:0 six minutes later. Balgojevic was shown his second yellow in the 71st minute, forcing Istra to play with a man down for the remainder of the match. Zvonarek made it 2:1 in the 76th minute, but Beljo scored again in the 4th minute of stoppage time for the final 3:1.

 

Istra ended the season in 9th place with 31 points, while Belupo finished in 7th with 36. 

Lokomotiva v. Sibenik (2:1)

Lokomotiva and Sibenik met in Zagreb on Friday, May 20. Kulenovic scored for 1:0 in the 6th minute before Maric made it 2:0 in the 29th. Delic scored for 2:1 in the 41st minute, which was the final score. 

 

Lokomotiva ended the season in 5th place with 49 points, while Sibenik finished in 8th with 32. 

Rijeka v. Dragovoljac (1:0)

Rijeka and Dragovoljac met on Saturday, May 21 at Rujevica. 

The only goal of the match came in the 2nd minute when Obregon scored for 1:0. 

 

Rijeka ended the season in 4th place with 65 points, while Dragovoljac will be relegated from the First League, finishing last with 19 points. 

Gorica v. Osijek (1:1)

Gorica and Osijek met in Velika Gorica on Saturday, May 21.

Jovicic put Gorica ahead in the 30th minute for 1:0 at the half. Bartolec equalized for 1:1 in the 68th which was the final score. 

 

Gorica ended the season in 6th place with 45 points, while Osijek finished in 3rd with 69. 

Dinamo v. Hajduk (3:1)

Dinamo and Hajduk closed out the 36th round and the 2021/22 season at Maksimir on Saturday, May 21. 

While Dinamo already clinched the title in the previous round, the Eternal Derby between these two clubs is always played for pride. Around 2,000 Hajduk fans were meant to be in attendance, though they remained outside the stadium in protest of a new Makrsimir rule regarding banners. 

Petkovic put Dinamo ahead for 1:0 in the 53rd minute. Livaja's goal was called back by VAR in the 68th minute, though he came back to equalize in the 4th minute of stoppage time for 1:1. Dinamo ended up scoring two goals in the final two minutes - with Orsic and Baturina making it 3:1. 

 

Dinamo ended the season in 1st place with 79 points, while Hajduk finished in 2nd with 72. 

You can see the full HNL standings HERE.

To read more about sports in Croatia, follow TCN’s dedicated page

 

Saturday, 21 May 2022

BlockDown Croatia: Founder Erhan Korhaliller Reflects on World's First NFT-Enabled Web3 Festival

May 21, 2022 - It's been one week since the world's first NFT-enabled Web3 festival was held at Amadria Park Hotel Ivan in Šibenik, transforming Croatia into the crypto capital of the world. TCN spoke to BlockDown Croatia founder Erhan Korhaliller to find out why Šibenik was chosen as the lucky location to highlight the exploding phenomenon of Web3. 

BlockDown Croatia was held at Amadria Park Hotel Ivan from May 11 to 13 to focus on the Web3 world, particularly the metaverse, NFTs, gaming, and the role of DAOs in how we work, and play and socialize.

NFTs functioned as the tickets for the festival where participants were able to unlock exclusive experiences, connecting the potential of the metaverse with the real world. Attendees came to Šibenik from more than 50 countries, with 45 speakers, ten keynote sessions, presentations, panels, exhibitions, prizes, networking sessions hosted by figureheads in the industry, afternoon boat parties, VIP lunches and dinners, NFT galleries, and dinners at St. Michael's fortress. It was three days packed with innovative discussions and next-level networking, bringing together professionals, entrepreneurs, regulators, prominent industry executives, and investors from all parts of the world.

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"Unlike existing industry events, we plan to take our attendees on a three-day trip into another universe, where the excitement and energy of the Web3, NFT, and metaverse worlds collide in a feast for the senses," said BlockDown festival founder Erhan Kohallier before the event, emphasizing that this was the first-ever NFT enabled Blockchain conference. 

And it was Šibenik to have this honor. 

TCN was one of the lucky conference attendees and got to catch up with BlockDown founder Erhan Kohallier on the conference's final day to learn more. 

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'I'm 31 and spent a lot of time in Croatia in my early 20s going to festivals and always loved how beautiful it is, how warm the people are, and had special memories here. I knew that I wanted to do an event here at some point in my career - little did I know that it would be a crypto event. We launched BlockDown because of lockdown (blockchain + lockdown), and we launched it as a virtual event to put smiles on people's faces. We did six virtual events, and this was our first in-person event. All of the concepts we have tried to do on virtual streams have been upbeat, an event for the people, creative and fun. We wanted to bring that into the real world."

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But why Šibenik?

"We didn't want to do this in a city center or Miami or London as there are so many of them already. We were scouting locations and looking for places in Europe specifically as we felt that Europe needed an NFT/Web3 festival, which doesn't exist here. There are loads in the US but barely any in Europe. So it came down to Portugal and Croatia. We were looking for a convention center with a main stage that could hold 1500 people. This convention center in Šibenik had that. Then we shortlisted the locations in Portugal and Croatia to see what else they could offer, and when I came to Amadria Park, my jaw hit the floor. The natural beauty of this place is insane. While we spent a fair amount on production, we almost didn't need to because everything here is already beautiful. That helped us with the festival vibe. Every area gives you a different vibe. I wanted people to meet more naturally as opposed to being rushed. We wanted to add elements like sound healing and yoga, beach bar happy hours, boat parties, and events outside of the actual conference," said Kohallier.

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"Everyone commented on how amazing this location is. And I've never been to an event in crypto or even outside of crypto that is this beautiful. But what people loved is that this conference wasn't solely tied to 9-5 in the convention center. We ended all panels in the early afternoon so attendees could enjoy the outdoors here and the beautiful days. I've also had incredible feedback about the actual attendees. The conference had a laid-back vibe which was a positive. No one felt the pressure to have to network; it was done in a more natural way and environment."

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Did you encounter any issues in Croatia?

"I realized it's not easy to do things outside of Zagreb as much of what we needed for this event came from Zagreb, from the production team to the dancers. That caused us some roadblocks, but I love a challenge. It was all part of the process and made this event more rewarding for me. We managed to work through everything."

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Will BlockDown stay in Šibenik?

"I am not 100% sure as we want to bring BlockDown to other areas of the world. We are also looking to take it into Asia, Bali - other beautiful natural settings, and emerging markets like South America and Africa. The idea is that we have the teams in place now, and we keep scaling up. Maybe we have an event every three months with multiple teams working on them. I would love to do something in Croatia again. Having the first in-person BlockDown in Šibenik is a testament to how beautiful Šibenik and the area are. After meeting so many wonderful people in Croatia, this event can only improve." 

You can keep up with BlocDown here.

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

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