Wednesday, 22 September 2021

16 Super Reasons to Visit Croatia Now: September October 2021

September 22, 2021 – The sun is shining and we'll still be swimming in the sea for some time yet, although the weather and warm Adriatic are far from the only reasons to visit Croatia now

Here are a full 16 reasons to visit Croatia now, in September and October 2021
The weather is fantastic and the forecast is great!

Screenshot_205.pngVisit Croatia now: screenshot © Marc Rowlands

Screenshot_204.pngVisit Croatia now: screenshot

The sea is still warm enough for swimming

242336077_6243047692432629_2508322542701942610_n.jpgSwimming in very late September 2021 on the Omiš riviera, one of the best reasons to visit Croatia now © Marc Rowlands

The very best Croatian food

241480915_6170941186309947_1327304007351009063_n.jpgDomestic bacon and prosciutto, a classic Croatian 'tapas' served at the last surviving inn on Biokovo mountain, Vrata Biokovo © Marc Rowlands

There's no shortage of the finest fresh fish and seafood now the rush have tourists have gone. Want to cook them for yourself? Buy straight from the fishermen on the beach. You can't do that in peak season – it all goes to the restaurants. Also, Croatia's fruit and vegetables are ripe and at their best right now.

241126505_6138144742922925_8968400606881277475_n.jpgUnique, miniature squid, served in ink, with a medley of fresh, roasted vegetables at the restaurant of Camping Labadusa on the island of Čiovo, 2021. Yes, this is how amazing food is at some campsites in Croatia © Marc Rowlands

From figs, melons, mushrooms and truffles to salad greens, pumpkins and mandarins, Croatia is currently the land of plenty. And, the lunchtime specials – Marenda (Dalmatia), Gablets (Zagreb) are outstanding and super cheap right now. Looking for an amazing 50 kuna lunch in Dalmatia right now? Try Konoba Marenda in Šibenik, Konoba Joskan in Omiš or Gastro Diva or Konoba Kalalarga in Makarska?

242356626_6243046882432710_3401854122891850972_n.jpgRoast beef and beetroot risotto with sour cream, pomegranate and apple. Marenda of Konoba Joskan in Omiš © Marc Rowlands

Sports, activity and recreation

242223445_6222414447829287_952918838844562246_n.jpgCycling in Šibenik © Marc Rowlands

Now the temperature have grown more gentle, it's the perfect time to get sporty or active in Croatia. Why not try cycling and hiking in and around Šibenik? Or how about golfing in Zagreb? Inland Dalmatia is a great place for quad biking. Try it in Drniš, Knin, near Vrlika or in Imotski. If you want to try a range of activities and sports, then maybe head for Omiš. You can try canyoning, white water rafting, diving, mountain biking, hiking and a thrilling zip line in Omiš.

Peace, quiet, relaxation

IMG_3328defcvbnjuhgfcv.JPGThe peaceful beach at Kamp Adria Village Baško Polje, pictured in late September 2021 © Marc Rowlands

The kids are mostly back at school, the students have finished partying and are returned to university. Right now, Croatia's campsites, beaches and lunchtime restaurants are quiet and chilled. Romantic couples walk undisturbed across the sands or sip wine as they watch the sunset. The only sound you often hear is the lapping of the waves against the shore.

Idyllic camping

IMG_3321edrfghjnk.JPGRelaxing and peaceful, individual terraces of each glamping unit in Kamp Adria Village Baško Polje © Marc Rowlands

If you want to get up close to nature, camping in Croatia is one of the best ways to do this. And, right now, the country's campsites are at their best. Incredibly peaceful and way under full capacity, there are no more children, families or teenagers. You can bring your own mobile home or even tent – it's cool enough to sleep under canvas now (tents are too hot during the height of a Croatian summer).

241130404_6149405168463549_8737034291319710149_n.jpgUnforgettable sunset views at Camping Rožac, Trogir © Marc Rowlands

Looking for a brilliant Croatian campsite for late September / early October 2021? Camping Rožac, Trogir here has incredible sunset views, whereas the beach at nearby Camping Labadusa here on Čiovo island's other side is a faultless slice of paradise. Further south, the glamping offer of Kamp Adria Village Baško Polje here is also among the finest in Croatia. All three sites are nestled under strongly scented pine trees, just metres from the shore.

IMG_2401dfvgbhnjkiuyhgb.JPGIncredible paradise beach at Camping Labadusa on the island of Čiovo © Marc Rowlands

Discover some of Europe's greatest white and sparkling wine in continental Croatia

AnyConv.com__IMG_2044fgvbnmjnhg.jpgVineyards of Koprivnica-Križevci County winemakers © Marc Rowlands

Been to the Croatian coast before? Then no doubt you've tried some of Dalmatia's famous red wines. Unlike other places, where white wines usually accompany the lighter seafood, pasta and fish dishes of the seaside and summer, on the Croatian coast it's the red wines that rule. Big, gutsy red wines like Plavac mali and Syrah are found by the Croatian Adriatic.

IMG_1802wsdfgh.JPGWinemakers of Koprivnica-Križevci County © Marc Rowlands

Less well known are Croatian white wines Even more hidden are Croatia's sparkling wines. Because, if you want to find them, you have to move away from the sea and come inland. For the best sparkling wines, look to Zagreb County.

IMG_2122.JPGWinemakers of south Koprivnica-Križevci County © Marc Rowlands

For brilliant white wines, there's a thick strip of continental Croatia you simply must get to know. Its north is the Drava river and the sandy soil runs along its length from Koprivnica and Đurđevac to the start of Baranja. Up into the hills of Baranja and to the border with Hungary the vineyards stretch. To the east, Aljmas and Erdut, to the south Ilok, then west through Kutjevo and back to Zagreb County. Now is the time of the newest wines, of harvest celebrations. Now is the best time to walk the wine roads and trails of this massive white wine super-region.

It's the perfect time for a city break

AnyConv.com__ETugIXoWoAA2NmI_1.jpgVisit Croatia now: Zagreb © Alan Grubelić

Nobody wants to be trapped in a bustling city in summertime's 40-degree heat. The high temperatures never subside. The concrete retains it. When things really heat up in Croatia, you need the cooler mountain air or the sea, which at night absorbs the heat of the day. But, right now is the perfect time to go exploring Croatia's bigger cities.

Why not try Osijek, with its kilometres of cycle routes and parks, epic riverside promenades and the best-preserved complex of baroque buildings in Croatia? Certainly, Osijek's Tvrda and its Secession architecture should be seen by everyone once.

croatia_slavonija_osijek_0001.jpgVisit Croatia now: Osijek © Romulić & Stojcic

Or, how about Zagreb, the country's social, cultural and economic capital? There are different happenings in Zagreb streets and parks almost every day. And the atmosphere is second to none.

In Istria, you can linger for much longer on the Roman Forum at this time of year. No need now for running urgently between shadows. You can instead afford to take your time as you wander around the epic Roman architecture here. You'll find more unmissable Roman architecture in Croatia's second city of Split, by way of Diocletian's Palace.

A packed events calendar

_MG_9181fgvbnh.JPGEvents of Zagreb parks 2021, captured by © Marc Rowlands

Croatia's event calendar explodes at this time of year. In Zagreb and Dubrovnik, famous music festivals fill the parks and streets. Elsewhere, this is one of the most important times of the year for food and drink festivals...

Harvest time

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It's harvest time, and when the local produce is collected from the trees or fields, usually there's an accompanying celebration. The party always extends well beyond championing the local produce. These are some of the best events in Croatia – accessible to all ages and appealing especially to gastro fans.

For example, Ivanić-Grad's pumpkin festival - Bučijada - always has a great music and entertainment programme attached. Held on October 1, 2 and 3 in 2021, it draws folks from far and wide to the pretty Zagreb County town. You won't have to look hard to find fun events like this all across Croatia at this time of year, celebrating everything from walnuts and almonds to grapes, olives and mushrooms.

Budget flights are still available

d75218b48e994601038e90bf5fc21f51_XL.jpgVisit Croatia now: Budget flights from Ryanair

Not only are budget flights still available, but the summertime routes to all Croatian airports are also still in play. Everywhere in Croatia is easily accessible right now. And for very little cost.

Last minute deals and inexpensive accommodation

AnyConv.com__IMG_3340edrfghjnmkjhgfd.jpgPrivate pool of the 4-star Boutique Hotel Noemia, Baška Voda © Marc Rowlands

It's no secret that prices plummet on Croatia's coast at this time of year. Smart operators do their best to extend the season by dropping prices. You can pick up incredible deals at this time of year everywhere from restaurant dining to luxury resorts, villas, apartments and hotels with full or half board.

Sailing in Croatia

AnyConv.com__IMG_3354ertyhujhgfd.jpgA regular visitor to Brela, Baska Voda and Split returned again in September 2021 © Marc Rowlands

The season for sailing Croatia is nowhere near as short as that enjoyed by most sunbathers. You only need look at the daily newspapers to read about the latest luxury yacht to sail into Croatian Adriatic waters. But, you don't need to be a Russian oligarch to enjoy the beautiful bays, beaches and islands of Croatia. Charter yachts in Croatia can be found at reasonable rates – especially in late September and early October!

Volunteering

IMG_20210915_165305139_HDR.jpg2021 volunteer divers at Calypso Diving in Omiš © Marc Rowlands

Late summer, early autumn and spring are the best time to come volunteer in Croatia. In late summer and early autumn, it's the Adriatic that needs a little love. Volunteer divers undertake ecological missions to clean the seabed around the coast. It's surprising just how much trash falls into the seas after a summer season.

IMG_2818edcvbnhgf.JPGExperienced divers, pictured in 2021 at Trogir Diving Centre © Marc Rowlands

If you're a qualified diver, why not come and help out? Try Trogir Diving Centre here, the oldest diving school in Croatia. Or try Calypso Diving in Omiš here. There, you don't even need to be qualified - beginners can learn from scratch and earn their first diving certificates in return for their volunteering!

242151424_6227553893982009_4396189167021449696_n.jpgVolunteer divers at Calypso Diving in Omiš, 2021 © Marc Rowlands

It's the best time to explore Croatia's National Parks and Nature Parks

241316764_6170947642975968_6841343418900551668_n.jpgThe famous Skywalk of Biokovo Nature Park on the Makarska riviera in Dalmatia, 2021 © Marc Rowlands

In the preserved and protected wilderness of Croatian National Parks and Nature Parks, there's sometimes very little shelter from the sun. They can be tough to explore at the height of summer. Mountainous parks like Paklenica, Velebit and Biokovo have incredible hiking trails that are best enjoyed at this time.

241631995_6170951239642275_3522302139938915487_n.jpgBiokovo Nature Park peaks in 2021 © Marc Rowlands

Elsewhere, you can trace the waterways and waterfalls of Krka National Park, Kopački rit, Plitvice lakes and Žumberak-Samoborsko gorje in relative calm right now. No long lines of queueing tourists spoiling your photos. The island parks like Mljet, Kornati and Brijuni are all the more idyllic when there's nobody else around.

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There are much worse places you could be working remotely

Working.JPGVisit Croatia now: September October 2021 © Marc Rowlands

Friday, 3 September 2021

Digital Nomads Seen as New Development Opportunity for Croatian Tourism

ZAGREB, 3 Sept 2021 - Croatia is an ideal destination for digital nomads who are provided with a quality internet network in our country and can enjoy its fascinating scenery, pleasant climate, and overall safety, and this is a new development opportunity for Croatia's tourism, Minister Nikolina Brnjac said on Friday.

The tourism minister Brnjac underscored that digital nomads contribute to year-round tourism.

An estimated one billion people will be teleworking in 2035 and a significantly higher number of digital nomads are expected in the next period, she underscored at a conference organised by the Novi List daily in the seaside resort of Opatija .

Director of the Croatian National Tourist Board (HTZ) Kristjan Staničić underlined that an estimated 17 million people are digital nomads.

A joint campaign by the ministry and tourism board was launched this spring in an effort to promote Croatia's comparative advantages for digital nomads, primarily on the British market, followed and later on the markets of the USA, Canada and Russia.

200 applications for digital nomad status in Croatia

That has resulted in about 200 applications for digital nomad status in our country, said Staničić.

Croatia is one of the first EU countries to regulate a one-year temporary residence status for nomads. Cooperation between the ministries of tourism and of the interior has resulted in a series of laws being adapted related to digital nomads.

Interior Ministry State Secretary Terezija Gras recalled that the Law on Aliens had been amended to introduce digital nomads as a new category eligible for temporary residence. Conditions of eligibility have been entirely simplified and have cut unnecessary red tape, she said.

They have also been exempted from dual taxation payments and health insurance issues have also been regulated.

Digital nomads from Croatia and elsewhere presented their views and experiences at the conference.

For more news, CLICK HERE.

Friday, 13 August 2021

Number of Tourists in Commercial Accommodation in June Up 72 Percent

ZAGREB, 13 Aug 2021 - Croatia's commercial accommodation facilities in June reported 72% more tourists and 82% more overnights than in the same month of 2020, however the numbers are still not at the level of 2019, notably when it comes to foreign tourists, according to data provided by the national statistical office (DZS).

Commercial accommodation facilities reported a total of 1.37 million tourists in June 2021, and they generated 6.5 million overnights.

In June 2021, there were 1.1 million foreign guests in commercial accommodation facilities, or 50.6% more than in June 2020, and they generated 5.6 million overnight stays, or 81% more on the year.

Domestic guests generated 275,200 arrivals and 854,300 overnight stays, the numbers increasing by 76.2% and 87% respectively y-o-y.

In the first six months of 2021, there were 771,700 domestic guests in commercial accommodation facilities or 77.3% more than in H1 2020. They generated nearly two million overnights, up 82.2% on the year.

In the same period, foreign tourists made 1.5 million arrivals, up 50%, and 7.5 million overnights, up 82.3%.

Most foreign tourists were from Germany, Slovenia, Austria, Poland and the Czech Republic.

For more news,CLICK HERE.

Saturday, 24 July 2021

Split Airport Busiest in Croatia!

ZAGREB, 24 July, 2021 - Split Airport is currently the busiest in Croatia and this weekend alone it will handle 180 planes with 32,000 passengers!

This weekend has seen the largest numbers of passengers and planes, an executive at the airport, Mate Melvan, told Hina on Saturday, adding that 140 of those 180 planes were regular flights and 40 were private planes.

"If the situation doesn't deteriorate, we could have more than 300,000 passengers in July," he said, adding that Split Airport could already say that the current tourist season was exceptionally good when compared with last year's, which had been the worst to date.

Jelena Ivulić of the Jadrolinija shipping company told Hina there were many tourists in the Split port as well, their number rising constantly since June. She said 56,000 passengers and over 13,000 vehicles were expected in the port this weekend.

"It's a real July weekend. We are in constant positive growth and if it stays so, it will be excellent," she said, calling for caution due to COVID so that Croatia was not declared a red zone like last summer.

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

For more about Croatia, CLICK HERE.

Friday, 23 July 2021

HUBBAZIA - A Business Incubator in Opatija for Tourism Startups Open for Applicants Until August 5, 2021

July 23, 2021 - Opatija is known to be Croatia's "cradle of tourism", hence, it's no wonder that it became home to HUBBAZIA - a centre for creativity and innovation in tourism. This business incubator, co-financed by the European Union, is now accepting applications from start-up companies that have original, sustainable, and creative ideas to further boost tourism entrepreneurship in Opatija. Applications are open until August 5, 2021! 

One of the most important (if not the most important) economic branches in Croatia is tourism and through HUBBAZIA, the City of Opatija encourages and attracts young startup companies to open and create new sustainable business ideas to further enhance the development of tourism in the city by providing full management training and mentoring, fully-equipped co-working space for brainstorming and lastly, venture capital financing. Joining HUBBAZIA is a great opportunity for young entrepreneurs to help increase their company's efficiency while significantly reducing looming business risks.

In return, through this project, the City of Opatija hopes to attract more foreign and domestic investors, regional economic and social development growth, and a more fulfilling relationship between the city's small to medium enterprises and the local community's needs. With HUBBAZIA amounting to a total value of HRK 2,543,985.25 (EUR 338,850.47), thanks to the European Regional Development Fund, the project will serve as big assistance to youth who are striving in launching their own businesses and will ensure the growth of Opatija's tourism industry.

Conditions for application 

The City of Opatija, together with PAR Business School, welcomes young entrepreneurs who have innovative ideas and business models related to tourism AS LONG AS the business entities are not older than 3 years. The program will have 5 project cycles, meaning, it will have 5 generations of participants. The deadline for the application for its 1st cycle will be on 05.08.2021 at 12:00. The workshops and mentorships will begin on 16.08.2021 and will be held in the newly renovated and modernly equipped Villa Antonia. If interested, CLICK HERE for the application link.

What to expect?

After the submission of all applications closes, HUBBAZIA will conduct the selection phase which usually lasts for 1 month. If your business manages to get through, you will enter the mentoring and education phase which lasts for 4 months along with 25 hours of workshops each month. Here, your company will be mentored by experts in business, finance, marketing, sales, web design, investment, and product development to help you shape and enhance your business ideas. Next is the final consultation/construction phase, where you will be given a month to finalise your business construction model. The whole cycle culminates on Demo Day when participants get to present their ideas to the public and attract investors. 

Attendees will be entitled to have free co-working space, internet, meeting room, consumables for training, counseling, and mentoring, presentation on HUBBAZIA websites and social networks, and minimized initial fixed costs. Most importantly, HUBBAZIA will be a space for like-minded individuals to brainstorm and network their business with other entrepreneurs and to gain a wider range of business information and contacts - a definite and exciting once-in-a-lifetime chance!

For more details on HUBBAZIA, CLICK HERE.

To learn more about Business, follow TCN's dedicated page.

CLICK HERE for more about Croatia.

 

Thursday, 8 July 2021

Zagreb Grič Cannon: Explosive Noon Reminder

July 9, 2021 - Zagreb Grič Cannon - a reminder of noon, and a reason to avoid the centre if you aren't a fan of loud sounds. Get your noise-canceling headphones and read about the cannon's history, courtesy of TCN reporter Ivor Kruljac.

If you find yourself walking around a wider Zagreb centre (such as Savska Cesta or Marin Držić Avenue) around noon, and you focus on the sounds of the city, you may notice a weird sound in between traffic and people passing. An unusual sound, as if someone dropped a heavy box. But, if around noon, you find yourself at Ban Jelačić square or upper town, you will hear a clear and loud BANG! Fear not, as this is not a terrorist attack, and you weren't lied to when your tourist agency swore to god Zagreb is safe from such horrors. The heart-stopping bang is a signifier of noon. If you hear a boom at 11:59 or 12:01, your watch is behind a minute. The cannon states that clear and very, very loud.

Loudest time checker you could think of

Grič cannon first started signaling noon on January 1, 1877, and was located at the State's Meteorology department, back in times when Croatia was part of the Austrian-Hungarian Monarchy. It wasn't until 1927 that it was moved to Fort Lotršćak where it is situated today.

According to the Klovićevi Dvori Gallery's official website, Fort Lotrščak was named after a bell and comes from campana latrunculorum, which is Latin for „Bell of Thieves“ that rang before closing city gates. Historians aren't exactly sure what the Fort looked like in medieval times, although it is speculated based on old sketches that it had only two floors. It wasn't until 1857 that romanticistic architecture gave the fortress today's four floors and an additional tower at the very top (from which you have a breath-taking view of Zagreb today).

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Fort Lotrščak © Ivor Kruljac / Total Croatia News

In the 17th century, the Fort served as trading storage and had various other ways to adapt to the need of Zagreb and Zagreb's citizens at different times. At one point, when the City was out of money to restore and repair the Fort, it gave Lotrščak to citizens for rent. Citizens who wanted the Fort also had the obligation of maintaining it, and in case of enemy assault, it was to be returned back to the City for defense purposes.  

Warning shot 

Speaking of defense purposes, an old legend says how this cannon managed to save Zagreb with a single shot from the Ottoman conquerors. Legend has it that the Ottoman commander Hasan Pasha (Hasan Paša) settled his army at the coast of the Sava river, in today's area of Novi Zagreb. He was preparing to cross the river and invade the city. But before that, he was about to have lunch one day, and Zagreb fired from the cannon in the Ottoman's direction, close to Hasan and blasting a chicken he wanted to eat. The shot scared the hell out of the Ottomans and they retreated, leaving Zagreb intact.

Changing arsenal

Over the course of time, there were five different Grič cannons that served the purpose of signaling noon. The current canon was given during Zagreb's Univerzijada in 1987, courtesy of the Yugoslavian National Army (JNA) as Croatia at the time was part of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (SFRJ).

As for the first three, you can find them today in the collection of the Zagreb City Museum. The first cannon originated in 1876 and was replaced by the second cannon in the unidentified year at the end of the 19th century. The third cannon you can see in Zagreb City Museum, and the first that was situated on Lotrščak fort, was introduced in 1928, and it was made by restoring a Polish cannon from 1912.

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Three cannons showcased at Zagreb City Museum  © Ivor Kruljac / Total Croatia News   

So finding yourself in front of Fort Lotrščak (whose entrance is located right next to the Upper town funicular station) is not recognizable if you are not a fan of loud noise as it can give you a sound fright even down below at Jelačić square and the surrounding area. But, for the brave ones, the Grič cannon can provide a unique souvenir from Zagreb. It doesn't use live ammo (the cannon is modified so it can't), but it does fire several pieces of thick cardboard that then flies down to the area underneath Lotrščak's entrance and smelling like gunpowder.

Ceased fire

Despite being a regular background sound for the experience of living in Zagreb, Grič cannon went through periods when it ceased fire and stopped making statements. The first such instance was World War I and then followed by the war in the nineties. Most recently, the cannon was silenced after the Zagreb earthquake on March 22, 2020, but it re-fired hot and heavy sometimes in May 2020. However, followed by the December 29th Petrinja earthquake, which was also felt heavy in Zagreb, the cannon is silent even today.

„We are not quite sure when it will re-fire“, briefly commented the Zagreb Tourist Board member that welcomed me in Fort Lotrščak, one of the locations where Zagreb TB has a regular stand. Still, despite the cannon being silenced, you can climb and sightsee Lotrščak, the famous cannon as well as the watchtower on top of the Fort, for the prize of 20 kunas.

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One of the exhibitions at Lotrščak © Kula Lotrščak

The Lotrščak Fort address is Tomićeva 9, and the Fort occasionally also hosts various exhibitions at times too. But, the cannon is a regular feature, and there are lots of info on the history of the cannon and the Fort itself there too on the walls- both in English and Croatian.    

Learn more about Zagreb on our TC page.

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

Wednesday, 7 July 2021

Very Slow but Sure Recovery for Croatian Private Accommodation Sector

July the 7th, 2021 - The Croatian private accommodation sector is slowly but surely recovering from the horrific blow the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and the travel restrictions dealt it. That being said, there's an extremely long way to go yet.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Jadranka Dozan writes, among the many economic indicators that signal a solid pace of economic recovery, the most recent picture is provided by the weekly updates of fiscalisation data.

The latest data from the Tax Administration claims that last week, the value of receipts issued across all activities within the fiscalisation system stood at 19 percent higher than in the same week last year, two percent behind the comparable week of pre-pandemic 2019.

The latest figures clearly reflect the approach of the peak tourist season. Namely, in the week of the transition from June to July this year, 54 percent more receipts were reported in the tourism and hospitality industry than were reported last year. As such, when it comes to these activities, 804 million kuna of weekly turnover was reported through fiscalisation, but compared to pre-crisis 2019, that figure is still 15 percent less.

In order to get a better picture of the impact of the pandemic, the Tax Administration also offers comparisons of fiscalised turnover for the period since last year's outbreak in Croatia.

They point out that from the end of February to the end of last week, the total fiscalised turnover was 22 percent or 12 billion kuna higher than it was back during the same period last year, and two percent lower than the year before.

However, while in trade the pre-trial traffic was exceeded by four percent, in tourism and catering, the value of receipts issued in the observed more than four months is still lower by about 40 percent.

What do things look like in terms of the recovery of fiscalised turnover when we look more closely at individual activities at the level of the first half of the year?

For example, in the first six months of 2021, 1.74 billion kuna in cash turnover was recorded by the Croatian private accommodation sector (which, in addition to payments with banknotes, includes cards, cheques, etc) which is 700 million kuna more than last year, but quite far from 3.32 billion kuna from the first half of 2019. Cafes and restaurants issued invoices worth 3.75 billion kuna in the first half of the year, which has not yet caught up with 2020's realisation with slightly less than 4 billion kuna in fiscalised turnover, and the gap in relation to the semi-annual turnover from pre-pandemic 2019 stands at more than 2.9 billion kuna in total.

Among the activities that are still well behind the pre-crisis levels of activity is the category of Arts, Entertainment and Recreation, in which, after last year's 250 million kuna, the value of issued receipts recovered a litte, reaching 313 million kuna, but it is still 38 percent less than the 502 million kuna recorded in the comparable period of the last pre-crisis year of 2019.

The same applies to activities in the category of Transport and storage. After the growing cycle in 2019 resulted in more than 1.3 billion kuna in annual fiscalised turnover, last year, enterprises from these activities reported less than 770 million kuna, and the beginning of recovery this year was reflected in an increase in the value of invoices issued to 843 million kuna. Entrepreneurial niches related to tourism and travel generally fared worse than others, which shouldn't come as a particular surprise to most.

According to the NCEA, a part of these enterprises is classified in Administrative and support service activities in which fiscalised turnover is still more than half lower than in the pre-pandemic area. In the first half of the year, they reported less than 290 million kuna, or slightly less than last year's 300 kuna, while the year before, 884 million kuna in turnover was fiscalised in these activities.

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

Sunday, 4 July 2021

Over Half a Million Tourists Currently in Croatia

4 July, 2021 - As Index.hr reports , Croatian Minister of Tourism, Nikolina Brnjac, published a tweet declaring over 500000 tourists currently in Croatia.

Istria and Kvarner regions, as well as Split-Dalmatia County and Zadar County are leading the list with the most guests at the moment. Considering the majority of them are coming from Slovenia, the Czech Republic, Germany, Poland and Austria, it is safe to assume most of these guests arrived by land. Airport destinations like Dubrovnik are still lagging behind in numbers, but with the recent start of Delta Air Lines and United Airlines direct flights to the city, this too is likely to change.

Dalmatian Destinations Rise

Makarska is doing well at the moment. With 6500 guests on record this popular seaside town is up a whopping 100% when compared to last year. This is still a far cry from 2019 though. This number only makes up about 50% of guests visiting Makarska in the same period two years ago.

Split is seeing the benefits of train connections to Central Europe. Since late May the city has seen direct trains to Prague, Bratislava, Vienna and most recently Budapest. Numbers at Split Airport are also rising. 160 airplanes are due to land in Split this weekend, 120 of them being commercial flights. At the same time, the Split Ferry Port is expected to receive over 40000 passengers and 11500 vehicles. Incoming tourism seems to definitely be picking up for Dalmatia's capital city.

As already mentioned, Dubrovnik is seeing two American airline companies connecting it directly to New York. Both companies started flying this week with airplanes full to capacity. This is a big step towards giving American tourists a chance to take over the position of Dubrovnik's most numerous guests from the traditionally strongest British market. Speaking of the British, they are the ones much of Croatian coast, especially Dubrovnik, are still waiting for. As of now, it is still unclear how, when and in what numbers will the British visit Croatia this year.

In the north, Rijeka region is seeing the return of Lufthansa flights as well as low-cost Eurowings flights. These will be a huge boost for the numbers from German market as the two companies now connect this part of Croatia to Frankfurt, Munich, Düsseldorf, Berlin and Hamburg.

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

Friday, 25 June 2021

Maritime Welfare in Croatia: Drvenik Case and What Law Says

June 25, 2021 - The issue of maritime welfare in Croatia was raised once again after a heated discussion on a beach in Drvenik Veli. Here are the details of the case and legal guidance to the maritime welfare in Croatia.

With the 2021 tourist season already being 58% better than 2020, tourists once again visit Croatia as one of the top holiday destinations.

However, like any year, the season can't go without at least some sort of incident.

Lovely beach, disgusting words

Yesterday, Croatia was shocked and enraged with the incident that happened on a beach on Drvenik Veli island (not so far from Trogir). Croatian journalist Tonka Alujević and her friend went to a beach where two Czech tourists started complaining that it's a private beach, perks of paying for a villa, and that Alujević needs to leave. Alujević refused to leave, stating that beaches are maritime welfare and cannot be privatized, refusing to move. After, as Alujević claims Czech tourists hit her head with a phone, they called the villa owner. 24 Sata daily newspaper published a video Alujević's friend recorded.

„Ma'ams, Ma'ams, how did you get here? On foot?“, asked the owner on a phone that was on speaker and held by the Czech tourists.

„I'm a journalist. Do you know Croatian laws? Do you want to end up in media?“ replied Alujević with a chill face while smoking a cigarette on a sunny day at the beach.

„Come on, put me in the media, come on put me! But first, go to the land register and see that my beach is private," screamed the owner in Croatian, with a lot of derogatory phrases (if only Czech tourists had a translator to understand the rich swear word heritage of Croatian language, right?)

The whole thing ended up with inspection stepping on the scene. Despite the video footage being clear, the owner, identified by Index.hr as Tomislav Meštrović, owner of Centovi Dvori Villa, tried to justify himself, saying everyone is welcomed at the beach, and he attacked the women because they passed through his doorway.

„No, I have no idea what video, who what... who knows what that is... I called the police for trespassing through my land“, said Meštrović to Index.hr when asked about the footage.

24_sata_drvenik_video.jpg

the conversation at the beach, screenshot/ 24sata

Law and order

Following this story, Index.hr's columnist Goran Vojković analyzed the law to clear up the issue of maritime welfare.

„The Maritime Welfare and Sea Ports Law states 'at least six meters from a line horizontally distant from the line middle waters'. But it can be wider, for example, if part of the land that in its nature or use serves to exploit the sea. It can also be narrowed- for instance, if support walls or a public road are close to the sea“, Vojković listed general rules but adding that maritime welfare border is specifically determined.

„So, the coast is free to use where the beach is, in general, six meters. You can come and use it for your needs, such as bathing, tanning, or walking. The land behind can be private, but the coast cannot“, concluded Vojković.

On the other hand, there are ways to limit the use of maritime welfare.

„There are some parts of the coast where you cannot enter. You can enter the marina and walk around it, but only until 10 pm. You cannot enter at all in a shipyard port. Those are the parts of maritime welfare for which the state assigned a concession to someone. The concession can limit or terminate public use“, explained Vojković.

Additionally, the law states that it is possible to have a beach in its concession and limit public entrance. But it needs to be registered, and the prices are so expensive that there are very few beaches like this in Croatia (Drvenik one not included in that small list).

„If someone claims that has a concession and that he/she can exclusively use some part of the coast, he needs to have a proof you can easily check in the register. I repeat, there are very small examples; even beaches in front of five-star hotels are public good“, Vojković pointed out.

And such beaches are filled with deck chairs, food stands, etc. But as Vojković pointed out, on a public beach, you have the right to bring your own deck chair, your own food, and drinks, and you can't be forced to consume content on the beach.

„In short, enjoy the Adriatic coast- with some very small exceptions of exclusive concessions, the entire coastline (including island coast) is free for your use and joy. Nobody can hold a grudge or complain if you came to a bath where they think it's 'their' beach. If someone is uncomfortable, don't debate, call authorities“, advises Vojković.

topgirl_at_the_beach.jpg

Pixabay

And the beach is open for public happily ever after

As Jutarnji List reported, the Drvenik case has a conclusion to an intriguing plot. Unhappy with Meštrović's behavior, Dalmatian locals went vigilantly and started writing bad reviews on Google, seeing the villa losing its value and tourists.

„Even though neither the building, nor its surroundings changed since the video was released, the unkindness of the owner was enough to move once-prestigious villa to the lowest grading Croatian places on Google“, says Jutarnji.

A couple of more lessons can be learned for a successful and enjoyable season from this tale.

For owners: present your offer fair in accordance with the law as transparency is the best way for your offer to beat the competition.
For tourists: if you were promised a private beach, but you see locals coming, don't be rude to them and don't attack them. The only one you can really be mad at is your host, who perhaps lied about what they can truly provide.

Learn more about beaches in Croatia on our TC page.

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

Saturday, 29 May 2021

Adrilink Project to Boost Tourism in 7 Adriatic Countries

ZAGREB, 29 May 2021 - Adriatic states are a rich tourism whole but have a lot of untapped potential which should be promoted also outside the short and intense season, participants in a regional tourism project said in Subotica, Serbia on Saturday.

Landscape Days, held in the Zasavica Special Nature Reserve near Sremska Mitrovica, are part of the Adrilink project which encompasses ten partner cities in seven Adriatic countries - Italy, Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Albania and Greece.

The project partners in Croatia are the municipality of Mošćenička Draga and the town of Vrsar.

"The goal is a common vision of the landscape as a driver of the local development of the Mediterranean-Adriatic-Ionian economy, and the project envisages using modern information and communication technology to promote new destinations among tourists by making them more attractive, and to extend the season," said Svetlana Sabo, a member of the project team.

The Adrilink project lasts from 1 February 2020 to 31 July 2022, and one of its results should be a sustainable common strategy, new common itineraries, and linking ten interpretation centres in the seven countries though an app and a digital platform.

The goal is to offer tourists new challenges and the discovery of new natural and cultural landscapes such as nature reserves and the historical and cultural heritage.

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