Sunday, 23 August 2020

PHOTOS: Secluded And Beautiful - Vir Island A Safe Choice For Late Summer

August 23, 2020 – Croatian Tourism minister Nikolina Brnjac's recent visit to Vir island highlighted it's safe epidemiological record. Pictures show what to expect from a peaceful and secluded Vir.

Croatian Minister for Tourism, Mrs. Nikolina Brnjac, was welcomed on Vir island by the Mayor of Vir Kristijan Kapović, President of the Municipal Council of Vir, Rajko Radović, Deputy Mayor Antonio Vučetić, Director of the Vir Tourist Board Srđan Liverić, Director of the islanders' own tourism company Vir Turizam Kristina Perić, Head of Vir Turizam Mate Čulina, director of Tourist Board of the City of Zadar Mario Paleka © Virski List

Mrs. Nikolina Brnjac was not the first Croatian Tourism Minister to visit Vir island, located north-west of Zadar. Her three most-recent predecessors had also taken the short journey via bridge from Privlaka and Nin to reach the nevertheless peaceful and secluded island. However, Brnjac was the first to do so in August, at the peak of the tourist season. And, she had good reason for doing so.

Though connected to the mainland by a short road bridge, Vir island manages to retain a peaceful seclusion

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Vir island has plenty of beaches to choose from and lots of space © Anton Unković / Tourist Board Municipality Vir

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Some of Vir island's beaches are remote, but easily accessible by boat © Zvonko Kucelin / Tourist Board Municipality Vir

As reported in TCN earlier this season, Vir island is one of 2020's success stories. In a challenging year for tourism, Vir island had bucked all trends and actually improved on last year's visitor numbers. It was the first Croatian destination of 2020 to reach one million overnight stays. The island is keenly observing epidemiological guidelines, has positioned itself as a safe place to visit and has reaped the rewards.

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Even on Vir island's more popular beaches, there's still lots of room for everyone © Vir Turizam

With over a month left to tour its beautiful, spacious beaches and clear, turquoise seas, these images give an idea of what you can expect from a visit to Vir.

Venetian fortress Kaštelina is one of the island's most significant landmarks © Tourist Board Municipality Vir  

Vir island is perfect for walking and exploring. Often, you'll find yourself alone on its many kilometres of shoreline © Tourist Board Municipality Vir  

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Boats in the harbour on Vir island at sunset © Zvonko Kucelin / Tourist Board Municipality Vir

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Sunset over the Adriatic, as seen from Vir island © Sanja Grgić Ćurić / Tourist Board Municipality Vir

Tuesday, 3 December 2019

Want to Pay for Your Stay with Cryptocurrency? Head to Vir Island

December 3, 2019 - With ninety-six apartments offering advance payment and reservations via cryptocurrency thanks to the blog Ostrov Vir, and given the size of the island, its population, and the number of accommodation units, Vir has become one of the world's leading providers of crypto services.

HRTurizam reports that this story was recently published by the Czech portal Arbolet, whose internet team provides consulting and work in the crypto market. Arbolet member Václav contacted Miriam Kelečić, who runs the Slovakian blog Ostrov Vir and mediates apartment rentals on Vir to tourists from Slovakia and the Czech Republic, so the island's crypto market is almost immediately open to members of this community.

“I thought for a long time about using cryptocurrency payments, but did not know the area well enough. This is where Mr. Václav helped me the most,” says Miriam, thanks to whom accommodation on Vir can now be paid by cryptocurrency, that is, by booking through Ostrov Vir. Those 96 apartments paid in cryptocurrency represent 2.51 percent of the total Vir accommodation capacity, consisting of 3,819 accommodation units. In fact, the percentage in foreign exchange is higher because the number of apartments is an absolute figure of 100% occupancy with payment by card or cash, which means that the share of cryptocurrency in foreign exchange by the summer season will surely be even higher.

Miriam is the most influential promoter of Vir in Slovakia and the Czech Republic, and through her work and bringing the Travel Channel television team to Vir, the island has opened to the booming Slovakian tourist market. The Vir influencer and blogger at the same time represents the Slovakian and Czech apartment owners associations on the island of Vir, some of whom have already started receiving payments for cryptocurrencies BTC, BCH, LTC, ETH, and USDC. According to Arbolet, the service is connected to the Coinbase Commerce system, whose user interface is simple, intuitive to use, and extremely easy to understand.

Cryptocurrencies, known as virtual or digital currencies, only exist online; it is not issued or controlled by any central bank. Bitcoin is the most well-known cryptocurrency, also known as digital gold, and is globally accepted for online payments. There are several bitcoin ATMs in Croatia today - in Zagreb, Split, and Rijeka, and the popularity of bitcoin usage is also being contributed by entrepreneurs, such as those on Vir, who accept it in online payments for tourist accommodation or other services.

Apart from cryptocurrencies being used for online payments, they are traded like any other currency. Thus, the value of bitcoin nine years ago was $0.003 USD, and more than $9,000 last year. Today, there are hundreds of other cryptocurrencies and new ones are emerging almost daily. Some survive and grow, some fail, but the growth of the crypto market is persistent. Thus, more and more online stores are offering cryptocurrency payments, while digital wallet owners are looking for deals where they can exchange their cryptocurrency units for products or services.

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