Saturday, 24 July 2021

Faithful Czech, German, and Polish Tourists Saving the 2021 Tourist Season in Split

July 24, 2021 - The 2021 tourist season in Split is in full swing, with 14,000 tourists currently in the Dalmatian capital. 

"Currently, more than 14,000 tourists stay in Split, and according to the eVisitor system, 67,600 tourist arrivals and 254,000 tourist overnight stays have been realized in the Split area since the beginning of July, which is an increase of 94 percent in arrivals and 80 percent in overnight stays compared to 2020. The largest number of tourist overnights was realized from these main markets: Poland, Germany, France, and the USA, and from Croatia itself," said Tina Ćurković from the Split Tourist Board and explained that the number of tourists in Split is actually higher because of the midnight registration deadline for currently registered tourists in the eVisitor system, reports Slobodna Dalmacija.

"Our statistics do not include guests from cruise ships or visitors who do not spend the night," says Tina Ćurković.

When looking at Split-Dalmatia County, things are also going better than expected in the most optimistic forecasts from the beginning of the year. However, it has become increasingly difficult to find free accommodation in Split and its surroundings in recent days, especially with private renters.

"The acceleration of the season is noticeable. Statistics also show this. The most numerous guests are Poles. From the beginning of the year to July 22, as many as 935,000 Polish tourists arrived in Croatia," reports Joško Stella, director of the Split-Dalmatia County Tourist Board.

He confirms that the Czechs are behind them, and there are also Germans and Slovenes. There are also a lot of local guests - about half a million.

"Tourists who come by car predominate, and this has been the case for the last ten years, and the only thing that has changed is their order, so sometimes we get the most Germans or Czechs, and this time its Poles. So we can say that Poles, Czechs, Germans, Slovenes are among our most loyal guests and that our season, at least for now, is going very well," Stella says satisfied.

Between 65 and 70 percent of traffic from the record and most prosperous 2019 has already been recorded. 

"Which, hand on heart, should not be a reference because it was exceptional by all criteria. Honestly, we all shot at the seams that year because of the overcrowding and could hardly wait for that season to end. So I would rather say that our measure is tourism that happened to us in 2016 or 2018, and if we compare ourselves with those seasons, then today's numbers of guests and overnight stays are close to the results achieved then," says Stella.

Americans and Brits have not arrived in large numbers yet. However, in recent years, they dominated when Ultra came to town. 

"The numbers have always been on the side of Poles, Czechs, Germans, Slovenes ... The Americans and the British prefer Split because they come by plane, and there is also Hvar, Dubrovnik, Zagreb, and Plitvice. There are indeed fewer guests from Asia. From South Korea, for example. Americans often came to us as cruise guests, and today there is much less of that," Stella adds.

Luckily, we are very well connected by motorways with the richest countries in Europe, which are practically our neighborhood, and our airports are great.

"Especially Split, which can be seen by the number of flights and guests, and that is our great advantage. In fact, if they managed to finish the season at this pace, they would calmly welcome autumn because the state, based on such tourist results, would still have the strength to encourage those whose business was threatened by the coronavirus pandemic," says Stella.

He also commented on the announced arrival of British tourists, whose government has lifted all epidemiological measures.

"The biggest problem for us is testing guests on their way home and prescribing mandatory quarantine. So, naturally, that discourages people from going on vacation. However, in the case of Britain, which has almost completely abolished epidemiological measures, logically things should not be asked of their tourists, which means that they could easily come to Croatia on holiday," Stella is optimistic.

He thinks that it would be more correct to measure the number of hospitalized and thus determine completely safe or less safe zones than to look at the total number of infected.

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

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

Friday, 23 July 2021

First Region in Europe: Split-Dalmatia County Google Sea View is Here!

July 23, 2021 - The Split-Dalmatia County Google Sea view is the first region in Europe to introduce the new Google map feature, which will allow its users to view the complete sea route along the coast of this county.

It is a virtual walk along the coast and an excellent innovative upgraded information service for boaters, skippers, fishers, tourists, locals, and foreigners. Through this service, they will receive information or a virtual picture of what awaits them when entering each port of Split-Dalmatia County and get acquainted with the location they would like to visit. This is the first such project in any Croatian county. The realization of this project is a step towards more efficient coordination and management of maritime assets in Split-Dalmatia County.

 

Google sea view is an integral part of the Split-Dalmatia County project "Maritime is good" implemented by the Split-Dalmatia County Administrative Department for Maritime Affairs and Tourism, which provides citizens with insight into all concessions and concession approvals in the county, and through an online form, allows you to report illegality, abuse, or devastation of maritime property if they have information about such actions.

This is a novelty on a European scale, in which the famous Google system ‘Street View’ for the first time got an implemented sea route. And with it a depiction of the entire coastal belt of a region. Sea view has shown the innovation of Split-Dalmatia County, which pioneeringly continues to invest in online infrastructure, striving to improve and enhance the promotion of the destination. It also raises the level of functionality of the system, the benefits of which will be felt not only by guests but also by the local population.

At the presentation of the new platform at Briig Hotel in Split, held as part of the promotion of the Split-Dalmatia County sea lanes, several months of work on the realization of the Sea view was presented. It was noted that the project was technically realized within the updated images for the needs of Google Street View through the use of Google 360° technology. Furthermore, in parallel with the mainland, the coast was filmed, which resulted in the finalization of the new platform.

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Goran Dedić

"The Google sea view platform will contribute to transparency, along with the Geographic Information System (GIS) system being prepared by the county, making it easier to check the situation on the ground and control the devastation of the maritime domain. Tourist and sports significance is paramount, especially since we are the first County to have such a service available. This is a real example of cooperation between the county and the tourist community and part of the plan of Integrated Coastal Zone and Marine Environment Management," Split-Dalmatia Deputy Mayor Stipe Čogelja said.

"Every year, we try to improve the promotion of our destination further, and we are very pleased that we have successfully implemented the Google Street View project. Google Maps are the maps with the most users in the world, they number in the hundreds of millions, so it is imperative to be well-represented on them. Furthermore, these are the maps on which most navigation devices are based nowadays, which have become an indispensable aid in every trip via smartphones," said Joško Stella, director of the Split-Dalmatia County Tourist Board, which is a partner in this project.

The vast majority of our guests use these maps when arriving at the destination. By bringing Google Sea View to almost every place in our county, guests have been able to virtually tour our entire coast before their arrival.

"This will make it much easier for boaters to find the desired destination. And when they actually arrive at the location, they will feel as if they have already been there. When it comes to navigation devices, Google Sea View must be one of the main factors by which Google makes corrections to its own navigation system. Therefore, in the future, navigation devices in our county should be significantly more accurate. It will also contribute to the satisfaction of all users.

In addition to tourist promotion and timely information, the Sea view platform boasts another important item; to better understand and preserve our coast. But also to protect the maritime good and future planning," added Stella.

As part of the Split-Dalmatia County "Maritime good" project, it continuously encourages more transparent, responsible, and efficient management of the maritime property. The Google Sea View project fits perfectly into all previous efforts of the Administrative Department for Tourism and Maritime Affairs to report devastation on the maritime domain online and created a unified geoinformation system of maritime domain records in the Split-Dalmatia County, which will soon be available to all, protect and valorizes our coast.

DSC_0007.JPGGoran Dedić

"I am thrilled that thanks to this tool, in the new normal conditions, everyone who wants to can experience the beauties of our sea and coast from the couch," said the head of the Department of Tourism and Maritime Affairs of Split-Dalmatia County Matea Dorčić.

"In the world of regatta sailing, Croatia is known around the world through sailing in the so-called small classes (small sailboats up to max 2 people), but in the world of sailing large regatta boats internationally, we are still an undiscovered destination.

When presenting regatta projects for this group of owners and crews, it is beneficial to have a tool like Google Sea view with which new clients can present the location of the sailing field, but also the entire infrastructure such as marinas, coasts, cities, etc. So our sailing guests can know in advance how to prepare and what to expect.

Croatia will grow in the qualitative direction in terms of nautical tourism in the coming years. Any additional presentation service like this will enable a much faster realization of these new trends, so I certainly welcome this effort and cooperation of Split-Dalmatia County and the Split-Dalmatia County Tourist Board," said Ivan Kljaković Gašpić, a prominent Croatian sailor, winner of silver and bronze at world championships, multiple European champion and triple participant in the Olympic Games, as well as project manager of the ACI Sail project.

The contractor of this project, Denis Orlić, systematically recorded a thousand kilometers of coastline from the area of ​​Drvenik Veli, Drvenik Mali, Čiovo, Šolta, Brač, Hvar, Vis, and Lastovo. These are destinations and locations significant to boaters and skippers.

"The extent of the project and its size is sufficiently evidenced by the fact that only Nice and Monaco have it on this scale, and these are only individual places, not entire counties. Over 1.3 million photospheres were taken - 360-degree photography. Views of the island were brought in, the footage was taken 100 meters from the shore, and since it was released to the public, they have recorded more than 12 million views. I want to emphasize that the project's many purposes are both tourist and social, and communal. Through the tourist purpose, tourists, boaters, skippers using the Sea view will see better where they are coming from; they will immediately notice if a port is inhabited, if there are berths… In this way, they can better prepare for arrival. If we look through the communal purpose, the benefits of this presentation will have various institutions such as the port authority and firefighters, to the concessionaire who will get a real insight into the state of the coast," said Denis Orlić.

The Sea view platform is intended for sailors, travel agencies, and charter agencies when creating itineraries. It will definitely help with a better connection to the island. The sea view is so precise that it brings information on the number of power poles, traffic signs, or what the area looked like before a major intervention.

With the realization of this project, the Split-Dalmatia County Tourist Board becomes the first tourist board to cover almost the entire coast in all its municipalities and cities with a Google Street View. In addition, Google Sea View has been brought to some interesting unknown sites, such as fairytale hidden coves and small islets on the high seas. With it, Split-Dalmatia County took control in its area over all-important social, cultural, and natural facilities and sites for tourist and communal needs.

And how to look at Sea view? Very easy, look on Google maps for the ​​Split-Dalmatia County area. Google Street View is activated by clicking on the ‘yellow man’ in the lower right corner of the screen. Enjoy this original display that will inform you and teach you about the beauties of this county.

For more, follow our dedicated travel section.

Wednesday, 21 July 2021

5-6 Positive Cases at Split Airport Every Day, Says Željka Karin

July 21, 2021 -There are 5-6 positive cases at Split Airport every day, the director of the Split-Dalmatia County Teaching Institute for Public Health, Željka Karin, said on the TV program "Good Morning, Croatia" Wednesday morning. 

Split-Dalmatia County was happy to open its doors to guests, but this also led to an increase in the number of infected people. The director of the County Teaching Institute for Public Health commented on the current situation in Split-Dalmatia County, reports HRT.

"We were looking forward to the tourists, but the situation needs to be controlled, so they need to come with COVID certificates. There are also suggestions that they have tests when entering the country, given that the Delta variant predominates not only in England but also Croatia," said Željka Karin as a guest on the show. 

She also pointed out that they have a checkpoint at the airport to control the situation very well both when tourists enter and leave Croatia. 

"At that point, we discover 5-6 tourists a day who have a positive rapid test. So we immediately put them in self-isolation, and we confirm this result with a PCR test. Then, after 10 days, we retake the swab, and the tourist can continue their journey," said Karin.

She referred to the current situation in Split-Dalmatia County.

"The situation is not worrying, but it is not satisfactory either. Our numbers are growing, and the number of hospitalized has increased. Therefore, epidemiological measures should be strengthened because until we get vaccinated, and the vaccine starts to work, the infection will spread," she said, emphasizing the importance of adhering to epidemiological measures and reducing gatherings.

Mate Melvan from Split Airport also spoke about the Delta Variant and the arrival of British tourists for Slobodna Dalmacija.

"The fact is that the British market at Split Airport has always been the strongest, but this year during the spring, many lines that have been operating for years were removed from the flight schedule until July 19. So far, only Croatia Airlines and British Airways have flown several times a week.

After the measures were lifted in Britain, airlines have started to return some of those canceled routes. However, there can be no question of any mass arrivals, because by the end of July we will have only 40 flights from Britain to Split, and in the pre-pandemic years there were more than 100 per week. So, everyone who is now heading to Croatia again still has a bunch of canceled flights, and that is not even close to normal traffic to Split," said Mate Melvan.

As the British can only arrive in Croatia by plane, we should not believe they will spread the Delta variant in Croatia, says Melvan.

"Everything that is now in the flight schedule was agreed and announced three or four weeks ago, and we now have five airlines from Britain and another in August. Some of them have only one flight, and some are just starting to operate in August. That is why there is no panic about it, because about 60 planes land in Split every day, and three or four of them are from Britain, with an occupancy of about 60-65 percent of the passenger cabin," Melvan explained on the fear that the Brits will increase cases. 

The testing center at Split Airport worked from:

Monday to Friday from 08:00 to 16:00,

on Saturdays from 07:00 to 17:00,

on Sundays from 08:00 to 16:00.

For all you need to know about coronavirus specific to Croatia, including vaccination points and testing sites, make sure to bookmark our dedicated COVID-19 section and select your preferred language.

Monday, 19 July 2021

Split-Dalmatia County Tourist Board Director: Either Ban Everything or Respect Measures

July 19, 2021 - Split-Dalmatia County Tourist Board director Joško Stella wants to make sure we save the season in Dalmatia, even if tougher measures need to be taken. 

The situation in Split-Dalmatia County is especially worrying, as Saturday counted more cases than Friday, atypical for the weekend. Namely, there were 51 new cases in the County on Saturday, which makes up half of the cases in Croatia on Saturday.

If the county turns red, Joško Stella, director of the Split-Dalmatia County Tourist Board, says one thing is simple - either ban everything or respect the measures, reports Dalmacija Danas.

We are in the midst of the tourist season. The first 17 days of July recorded better results than the first six months. The County recorded 1,942,000 overnight stays which is 54% more than last year, and at the 2019 level, it is 65%.

Those are great results. If there is an increase in the number of cases, he says, the plan is to activate the Headquarters and see how to resolve the situation. Both national and local must be involved, Stella pointed out.

"It’s summer, there are a lot of events on the coast. Should everything be banned, the answer is that the matter is simple - either everything should be banned or measures need to be taken. We also have experience with the Olympic qualifiers, where the measures were taken well and there were no infected people and we have other situations where the measures were not followed and there was an infection.

The most important thing is that everything is controlled and that people are responsible. I call on everyone to take personal responsibility because we will maintain our spot in the orange as long as possible and try to go back to the green," he added.

The Headquarters is the one who decides on the measures and is not easy for everyone to be satisfied. Someone will profit more, someone less, but we are going to try to extend the season as much as possible, he concluded.

Just to give insight into how well the season is going so far, last weekend, the Split Ferry Port counted 50,000 passengers and 12,500 cars. 

"Considering all the circumstances surrounding the current epidemiological situation, we must be satisfied because our turnover is 68 percent compared to 2019.

We don't like color changes, from green to orange, and maybe to red. We hope that the situation will return to normal if everyone adheres to epidemiological measures. Certainly, we are recording positive growth in traffic in the port of Split, so let it stay that way," said Jelena Ivulić from Jadrolinija. 

For all you need to know about coronavirus specific to Croatia, including vaccination points and testing sites, make sure to bookmark our dedicated COVID-19 section and select your preferred language.

Wednesday, 23 June 2021

Split-Dalmatia County Launches Cro Care Website to Facilitate Testing Needs for Tourists

June 23, 2021 - Cro Care allows tourists in Split-Dalmatia County to find coronavirus testing centers, report their health, and contact their embassy and all emergency services they may need. 

The Split-Dalmatia County Civil Protection Headquarters presented the Cro Care web platform through which tourists will be able to find out in just a few clicks where and how to get to coronavirus testing centers, report their health, but also contact their embassy and all emergency services they may need, reports HRTurizam

The Cro Care system works so that the platform automatically recognizes the user's current location and thus shows them the nearest emergency services locations and their contacts. They can also use the navigation or fill out the necessary forms.

The platform currently contains 30 testing sites, 25 embassies and consulates, and nine health centers and hospitals in Split-Dalmatia County.

"This is one in a series of activities of the Split-Dalmatia County Civil Protection Headquarters to make it easier for our guests, both foreigners, and locals, to stay with us. The web platform is a significant step forward because our guests will have all the information in one place," said Damir Gabrić, Chief of the County Civil Protection Headquarters.

“This application provides us with unlimited possibilities for expanding to other user needs such as pharmacies, police, etc. Furthermore, the system itself will provide the Tourist Board with vital statistics showing which users are from which countries, which language area they searched for the terms they needed, from hospitals, emergency services of covid testing centers, embassies, etc. The system is designed to recognize the user's speaking area automatically, and the website is offered in their language with all the translated names of institutions and the necessary information that is there," said the author of the application, Dejan Grepo from webLab.

Joško Stella, director of the Split-Dalmatia County Tourist Board, pointed out that their goal is to improve the application and expand it to other Dalmatian counties.

From next Thursday, July 1, thanks to the favorable epidemiological situation in the country, Croatia will further mitigate epidemiological measures. As confirmed by the National Civil Protection Headquarters, there will be no limit on the number of participants at events attended by people with digital EU certificates. Such events will be organized without a time limit.

The move will make it possible to organize a variety of events across the country. In addition, the organizers of the event will have access to a mobile application through which they will be able to read the QR code from the digital EU certificate, and the consent of the local civil protection headquarters will be required to hold the event.

For more, follow our travel section.

Wednesday, 9 June 2021

Split Zvončac EURO 2020 Fan Zone Announced: The Details

June 9, 2021 - The Split Zvončac EURO 2020 Fan Zone has finally been announced, where football fans can gather to watch all European Championship matches. 

Citizens of Split likely remember the last football Fan Zone, organized in 2018 in Đardin, during the World Cup. This year, the EURO 2020 fan zone will work from June 11 to July 11 at the legendary Zvončac park, a location many Split citizens adore, reports Slobodna Dalmacija.

The Fan Zone will also be organized by Damir Karaman, with associates from the company "Karaman Koncert," which has so far successfully organized numerous sports, cultural, and entertainment events in Split.

Visitors will be able to watch the games on a large screen and enjoy food and drink. 

"During the duration of the tournament, we will organize various prize games and events," said Damir Karaman.

Which performers and bands will play at the Fan Zone?

"We are still negotiating, but it will be a surprise for the days off at the European Championships, when we will fill the space with various programs.

It is normal for fan zones to be held in city parks so that people can hang out and have fun. Zvončac is ideal for us because it is bigger than Đardin.

That is why I, in cooperation with the Split and Split-Dalmatia County Tourist Boards, organized it in our city. Well, God willing, we will create a fan zone next year for the World Cup," said Damir Karaman.

Numerous tourists, mostly foreigners, also visited the last fan zone in 2018.

"All foreigners who were in Split knew about the fan zone, and when their national teams played, but also others, foreign tourists came there to watch the matches.

We must emphasize that several media houses reported from the Fan Zone - the German Bild, Danish television, and reputable portals. HTV, RTL, and Nova TV also reported from the fan zone, so it was more marketing for the city itself, and great promotion," said Karaman and pointed out that he will organize everything according to current epidemiological measures, in agreement with the Civil Protection Headquarters.

Admission will be free
The fan zone organized during the 2018 World Cup proved to be a hit and added value to Split.

It was attended better than any event in Đardin and passed without a single incident, with a crowded and brilliant fan atmosphere.

As before, admission will be free for all citizens and tourists, no matter the program.

To follow the latest sports news in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

To learn more about sport in Croatia, CLICK HERE

Saturday, 1 May 2021

New Map Shows Split-Dalmatia County Development Projects Transforming Region

May 1, 2021 - A map of the Split-Dalmatia County development projects for better project visibility. 

Jutarnji List reports that numerous development projects have been started and largely completed in the Split-Dalmatia area in recent years. Through its administrative departments and institutions, the county has actively and constantly invested in the balanced development of the county through several most essential categories. Split-Dalmatia County has the most local governments, with as many as 16 cities and 39 municipalities, including county projects and investment programs. For better project visibility, and in cooperation with the Public Institution RERA S.D. as the regional coordinator of that county and all county services, a map of development projects of the Split-Dalmatia County was made. The map shows the geographical distribution of development projects through a total of eight categories. It is designed as a tool that will be updated with new projects in the future.

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Eight categories refer to the most critical areas of investment, so it is evident that in recent years almost 600 million kuna has been invested in road infrastructure through numerous projects of the competent county administrative department, projects of the County Road Administration, but also the most critical projects of Croatian Roads. Port infrastructure and maritime property, in a county that is largely oriented towards the sea, is a significant development resource, so through this category, more than 36 million kuna has been invested in the maritime domain, in the areas of various local governments in the coast and on islands. In recent years the County Port Authority has started and partly already implemented development projects for the construction, rehabilitation and arrangement of port infrastructure in the value of more than 427 million kuna.

Economic zones and communal infrastructure were developed through 48 individual investments worth more than 34 million kuna.

In the county's area, six investment projects in water supply and drainage have been launched, which, with the partnership and support of the county services, are being implemented by Croatian Waters. These are projects worth more than four billion kuna. They relate to the Agglomeration SPLIT-KLIS-DUGOPOLJE-PODSTRANA-SOLIN, Agglomeration KAŠTELA-TROGIR-DISTRICT (SPLIT) -SEGET, Agglomeration TRILJ-ISLAND-DICMO JRACKA, Aglome STARI GRAD, and IMOTSKI Agglomeration.

Health care has been a current topic before, and especially in recent years, with constantly growing needs, to which the county responded with projects of almost 377 million kuna. Investments were made in 12 branches of Health Center facilities, equipment and premises for the Teaching Institute for Public Health, eight branches of the. Split-Dalmatia County Institute of Emergency Medicine, procuring 35 ambulances, but also strengthening human capacity through more than 80 specialist medical training. KBC Split, as the backbone of the health system, in cooperation with the County, is implementing projects worth more than 427 million kuna. The Split-Dalmatia Pharmacies made a significant step forward with the realized project of building and equipping the Galenic-Analytical Laboratory worth 70 million kuna.

As one of the categories, the map shows education, i.e., projects of construction, rehabilitation, reconstruction, and energy renovation of schools and dormitories, 17 facilities, a total of 105,694,040.02 kuna, and two projects of regional centers of excellence - Tourist School Split - 170 million kuna and Crafts - technical school Split - 82 million kuna. The projects carried out by the University of Split are also presented, and which were also realized with the support and partnership of the county.

Although the map defines the category "There is your home," the program that encourages demographic renewal through incentives for young families from rural areas to build and adapt houses, where a total of 120 individual contracts are visible distributed in 21 local government units, demographic renewal of rural areas is encouraged through several other measures and incentives.

One of the crucial categories on the map is EU projects. Those projects in which the holder or partner is a county or one of the county institutions are presented, and they relate to various economic and social sectors. Numerous projects listed in other categories are financed from EU funds, such as some significant road and port infrastructure projects, energy renovation projects of schools, construction and equipping of branches of the Health Center or projects of KBC Split, University of Split, and agglomerations. EU funds are the flywheel and wind in the back of a large number of our development projects, and over the past year, the county has gathered staff in its services who successfully implement the started and prepare new EU projects. In  ​​Split-Dalmatia County, more than 6 billion and 130 million kuna worth of projects financed from EU funds has been contracted so far.

For more, follow our business section.

Friday, 19 March 2021

Split-Dalmatia County COVID-19 Testing Points Announced for 2021 Tourist Season

March 19, 2021 - At the 6th Family Accommodation Forum, Split-Dalmatia County COVID-19 testing points were announced for the season. 

HRTurizam reports that the 6th Split-Dalmatia County Family Accommodation Forum was held earlier this week, which brought together Split-Dalmatia County representatives - the County Tourist Board, the Split Tax Administration, the Split Airport, and the County Teaching Institute for Public Health.

The Forum aimed to offer renters answers to many questions related to the season ahead. The main topic of discussion was safety, i.e., focusing on the fact that compliance with epidemiological measures will be the main prerequisite for the season.

”For six years now, the Croatian Chamber of Commerce - Split County Chamber has organized regional Family Accommodation Forums to gather and support this important and growing segment of our tourist offer. Namely, micro-entrepreneurs in family tourism give a great deal of effort in achieving significant results of Croatian tourism, so in 2019, private accommodation in Split-Dalmatia County participated with almost 60 percent in overnight stays and proved to be extremely flexible in the past, challenging year," said the president of ŽK Split Jozo Tomaš.

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, the number of private renters in Split-Dalmatia County decreased by 11 percent, and in the city of Split by almost 15 percent.

"That is why preparing for another specific season is very important to us, and that is why we organized the Forum so that renters, who are in direct contact with guests, get clear and current information," said Gordana Piteša, head of the Family Tourism Association - Split County Chamber.

The President of the Family Tourism Association of the Croatian Chamber of Commerce, Martina Nimac Kalcina, emphasized how important such events and the work of the Association and professional associations are to achieve common solutions and joint measures that will be the goal of all of us.

"This year, we are not talking about the promotion of our beauties, but about the promotion of safety, simplicity of procedures and travel, good organization. By mid-May, when the trips should start, we have time to prepare as well as possible, but we have to put it in fifth gear," said Nimac Kalcina.

Director of the Split-Dalmatia County Teaching Institute for Public Health, Dr. Željka Karin, and epidemiologist Diana Nonković, once again appealed for respect and adherence to all epidemiological measures.

"Testing points will be on Brač, Hvar, Vis, Makarska, Imotski, Trogir, Sinj and Split. A testing point of the Teaching Institute for Public Health is always open in Split; in a month, we will have to relocate the testing point that is now in the ferry port because of cruisers, and we are also talking about a testing point at Split Airport," said Karin.

The director of the County Tourist Board, Joško Stella, said that this year, as well as last year, they are ready to co-finance testing points for tourists.

"However, it is essential to be a green zone, that is, to have as few infected as possible and then to do strong marketing. The problem is partly that our major markets, primarily the Czech Republic, Poland, and Germany, are in a difficult epidemiological situation. Still, I hope that this will change for the better in the next two months," said Stella and announced Split-Dalmatia County Tourist Board training and projects.

Pero Bilas from Split Airport confirmed that the Airport is ready for the season, that they are in continuous contact with all carriers, and that all companies are interested in flying.

"We have announcements for many airlines for April, but we will see which of them will be realized. In any case, the whole industry is ready for the season and is waiting for a low start," said Bilas.

As much as their areas of activity were different, all participants agreed that there is still time until the beginning of the season for the numbers to improve. The situation to calm down, and for that to happen, the basic cooperation and personal responsibility of each of us, i.e., adherence to epidemiological measures which will paint Split-Dalmatia County as a green destination.

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Sunday, 28 February 2021

Spaladium Arena Prepared as Mass Vaccination Site in Split

February 28, 2021 - Preparations are coming to an end at the Spaladium Arena, soon opening as a mass vaccination site in Split. 

"Since last Monday, members of the Split-Dalmatia County Red Cross have been working on setting up the Spaladium Arena so that when larger quantities of vaccines arrive, it can be ready to welcome the start of large-scale vaccination. We have arranged 20 cubicles in which people will be vaccinated, which are needed to have a little privacy when getting vaccinated. As far as we are concerned, everything will be prepared by the end of this week at the latest," said Joško Metličić, the new director of the Split-Dalmatia County Red Cross, for Slobodna Dalmacija.

Only those who have been scheduled for vaccination will be able to come to the Spaladium Arena.

"At a specific hour, a certain number of people will be scheduled, who will be called and released to the Arena, where they will sit in prepared places and wait their turn for vaccination. Those who, say, are scheduled at 11 am will not be vaccinated at 9 if they come to the vaccination site two hours earlier. So, the order will have to be respected according to the list and according to the schedule," says Metličić.

Željka Karin, director of the Institute of Public Health of the Split-Dalmatia County, said we could start with large-scale vaccination as early as next week.

"We still don't know how much and which vaccine we will get next week. We received about six thousand doses of PfizerBiontech and AstraZeneca vaccines this week, and Moderna did not come, although it was announced. We distributed all the obtained vaccines to family doctors and special duty points, where people are also vaccinated. How many people have been vaccinated with those six thousand doses so far? We don't know yet. However, I think that next week we should not receive less than six thousand doses," says Dr. Karin.

Interest in vaccination is high.

"People are calling; they want to get vaccinated. If we had sufficient quantities of vaccines, we in Split-Dalmatia County would quickly vaccinate the population. We would have a satisfactory number of vaccinated by June this year at the latest. But for now, unfortunately, the vaccine is not in sufficient quantities. Next week we could put Spaladium Arena into operation to see if everything will work well and so that we can, if there are any shortcomings, fix those shortcomings so that it is ready for the real mass vaccination, which I expect in mid-March," explains Dr. Karin.

The number of cases in Split-Dalmatia County started to grow, connected with several events where groups of people were noticed (family celebrations, socializing in apartments).

"In the last two days, we have a slight decline, and I want to believe that there will continue to be a decline in the number of new infections. But when the terraces of catering facilities open, if the numbers start to go wild again, they will need to think about a possible closure again because it won’t make sense. I believe that it is in everyone's interest to have a tourist season, and I believe that it is in the interest of all private individuals who have restaurants and cafes to work over the summer. Therefore, I ask everyone and call on everyone to take responsibility and to respect all epidemiological measures, so that they would not be surprised and so that sometime in April they would not be forced to close catering facilities again," concluded Željka Karin.

To read more about COVID-19 in Croatia, follow TCN's dedicated page.

Friday, 19 February 2021

People also ask Google: What is Croatia Famous For?

February 19, 2021 – What is Croatia Famous For?

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

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

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

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

What is Croatia known for?

1) Holidays


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

a) Islands


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What is Croatia famous for? Islands © Mljet National Park

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

b) Beaches


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

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

c) Dubrovnik


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What is Croatia famous for? Dubrovnik © Ivan Ivanković

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

d) Heritage


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

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

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

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

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

e) Music Festivals


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What is Croatia famous for? Music festivals © Khris Cowley

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

f) Plitvice Lakes and natural heritage


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

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

2) Football


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

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

Sports in general are what is Croatia known for

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

3) Zagreb


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

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

4) Olive oil


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What is Croatia famous for? Olive oil

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

5) There was a war here


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

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

6) Wine


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

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

7) Croatian produce


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

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

Truffles


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What is Croatia known for? Truffles © Donatella Paukovic

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

Vegeta


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What is Croatia known for? Vegeta

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

Chocolate


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

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

Beer


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

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

8) Innovation


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

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

9) Being poor


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What is Croatia famous for? Being poor. Yikes!

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

10) People want to live in Croatia


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

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

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

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

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

Gastronomy


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

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

Coffee


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

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

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

Handball, music

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