Monday, 17 January 2022

Zagreb County Celebrates Successful 2021 Visitor Numbers

January 17, 2022 – Perhaps it's the perfect balance of nature, culture and close proximity to the buzzing, big city? Zagreb County celebrates successful 2021 visitor numbers, despite the ongoing global challenges.

After tourism in 2020 was almost totally nixed, 2021 will be remembered as the year things began moving again. Certainly, that can be said for Zagreb County, who are celebrating after releasing relatively successful visitor numbers for the year.

According to data from the eVisitor system, in Zagreb County in 2021 there were 87.5 per cent more tourist arrivals and 49 per cent more overnight stays compared to 2020.

In 2021, 59 per cent more domestic tourists visited the county and accounted for 9 per cent more overnight stays. Foreign visitor numbers were up a huge 110 per cent on 2020 and their tally of overnight stays was up 91 per cent on the previous year.


In total, 2021's numbers accounted for 58 per cent of the arrivals and 69 per cent of overnight stays that occurred within the record year of 2019.

Most foreign tourists to Zagreb County in 2021 were from Germany, Poland, the Netherlands, Italy, Austria, the Czech Republic, Slovenia, the United States, France and Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Looking at what sort of accommodation visitors chose, most overnight stays were taken in hotels (40 per cent). Household facilities like holiday homes accounted for 25 per cent, accommodation linked to a catering facility stood at 19 per cent and 10 per cent of visitors camped overnight.

The Zagreb County destinations most popular with visitors were Velika Gorica, Sveta Nedelja, Samobor, Jastrebarsko and Ivanić-Grad.

"Considering that 2021 was also marked by the coronavirus pandemic, I think that we can be very satisfied with the achieved tourist results,” commented Zagreb County Tourist Board director Ivana Alilović. “Tourist staff have made great efforts so that domestic and foreign guests can enjoy the diverse offer of our destination while feeling safe. And the Tourist Board of Zagreb County, through various campaigns, systematically worked to promote and attract tourists to the Green Ring of Zagreb."


The director added that the tourism sector had once again shown that it is adaptable and innovative and that the best results are achieved through synergies. She also noted the growing interest in holiday homes that offer security, excellent service and an authentic experience.

Last year, Zagreb County awarded one million kuna in non-refundable grants to entrepreneurs in tourism. The aim was an increase in quality of service and of facilities. As well as the building of new facilities, monies were directed towards the renovation and equipping of existing facilities, with focus given to additions such as swimming pools, wellness and other recreational, sports and entertainment content.

For more news about Zagreb County tourism, bookmark Total Croatia News pages here.

All images courtesy Turistička zajednica Zagrebačke županije

Thursday, 4 November 2021

Discovering Authentic Croatia's Secrets With Seoski Tourism

November 4, 2021 – Village tourism or countryside tourism - Seoski tourism in Croatia - offers authentic, traditional experiences. Aleksandra Kuratko, secretary of Udruga ruralnog turizma Hrvatske (Croatian Rural Tourism Association) tells us more about it, and their work to help facilitate it

Croatia's visitor offer is evolving and expanding. There are exciting aspects of authentic Croatia to be discovered. Away from the beach, villages inland often look remarkably similar to how they did one hundred years ago. There, crops are grown and produce made in ways passed down through generations of families. And, in some lucky instances, these family farmers are willing to open their doors, invite you inside and show you how they live.

25_-_Pelje_ac_-_Bread_under_bell_at_Agroturizam_Antunovi_.jpgBread from the peka at Agroturizam Antunović on Pelješac

Seoski Tourism – translated as either village tourism or countryside tourism – is just that. Family farms that offer hospitality. These are some of the most homely and most welcoming accommodation experiences you can have in Croatia. Offering sights and sounds, tastes and flavours that you can't find anywhere else, visits or stays in Seoski Tourism places have long been loved by locals for weekend breaks or holidays outside peak summer. But, increasingly, these authentic Croatia experiences are being discovered by international visitors.

14_-_Moslavina_-_Goats_at_Kezele_family_farm.jpgMoslavina goats at Kezele family farm © Davor Konjikušić

One institution trying to facilitate the growth in interest is Udruga ruralnog turizma Hrvatske - Croatian Rural Tourism Association. Since it was formed in 2016, they have tried to bring together Croatia's family farm hosts, to promote them and educate them, and to build bridges between these independents and tourist boards, tourist agencies, educators and even the wider world outside Croatia.

16_-_Moslavina_-_renewed_traditional_house_at_Kezelefamily_farm.jpgSeoski turizam Kezele in Šumećani, on the border of Zagreb County and Bjelovar Bilogora County © Davor Konjikušić

Based in Ivanić-Grad, Zagreb County, the Croatian Rural Tourism Association is currently touring the length and breadth of the country, holding workshops with as many Seoski Tourism family farms that will come. And if the farmwork doesn't allow them free time, then they can attend Croatian Rural Tourism Association workshops online.

On the eve of the association's online Seoski Tourism workshops for Central Croatia and Slavonia, TCN interviewed Aleksandra Kuratko, secretary of Udruga ruralnog turizma Hrvatske, to find out more about Seoski Tourism in Croatia.

18_-_Prigorje_-_Local_specialties_at_Raki__family_farm.jpgPrigorje specialties at Rakić family farm

My name is Aleksandra Kuratko and I am secretary of Udruga ruralnog turizma Hrvatske. As an association, we are 5 years old.

We have 35 members, most of whom are service providers in what we call Seoski Tourism. We also have several tourist boards and two educational institutions as members.

19_-_Bilogora_-_Horses_in_autumn_at_Agroturizam_Na_malenom_brijegu.jpgBilogora horses in autumn at Agroturizam Na malenom brijegu © Vladimir Vlajinić

Seoski tourism is not quite the same as rural tourism, because rural tourism is many different types of tourism that happen in rural areas. Seoski tourism - which you might translate as village tourism - is quite specific. We assemble people who work in agriculture and who, at the same time, are also offering hospitality. In English, you might call them Farm Stays. Or Agro-tourism – a merging of agriculture and tourism.

28_-_Pelje_ac_-_fresh_vegetables_from_Agroturizam_Antunovi_.jpgFresh vegetables at Agroturizam Antunović on Pelješac

People who work on agricultural estates often take care of local cultural heritage. For example, they might maintain and renew traditional wooden or stone houses. Many also have etno collections, in which they preserve different objects from their region. Some of these objects might have been used in agriculture and households hundreds of years ago. So, they are preserving the cultural heritage of Croatian villages. This is what we call material cultural heritage. But, there's another kind.

Ethno0017.jpgCultural heritage preserved in one Slavonian village © Mario Romulić

Non-material cultural heritage is also a part. That might be preserving old recipes of traditional, regionally-specific dishes. Or, it might be showcasing the songs and dance of local music.

We are currently running a project which is supported by the Croatian Ministry of Tourism and Sports in which we hold 37 Seoski Tourism workshops in the field all over Croatia. There will also be around 15 online workshops. The workshops are aimed at colleagues who currently operate in Seoski Tourism – they work in agriculture and offer hospitality. Also invited are local tourist boards and local action groups.

31_-_Photo_from_URTH_workshop_at_Slatina.jpgPhoto from URTH workshop in Slatina

So far, we conducted 20 workshops in the regions of Central Croatia, Slavonia and Baranja, and Podunavlje. From next week until the end of the year, we will conduct the workshops in Istria, Kvarner, Lika and Dalmatia. Some service providers were not able to attend earlier workshops, because of work commitments of Covid. So, we decided to also offer access to the workshops online. Tomorrow is our first online workshop for Central Croatia and on Friday it's the online workshop for Slavonia.

These workshops are interactive discussions between our association, service providers and all other stakeholders. We discuss the legislative framework, which can be extremely complex. We talk about new trends in tourism for the post-pandemic era. We also discuss the importance of integrating cultural heritage in digital promotion.

26_-_Pelješac_-_Donkey_farm_at_Agroturizam_Antunović.jpgDonkey farm at Agroturizam Antunović on Pelješac

For the legislative framework, we have initiated the formation of a working group for the development of Seoski Tourism, which is now operating in the Croatian Ministry of Tourism and Sports. So, at the workshops, we ask if anyone is having issues. We collect the responses and address them in the working group.

Part of the workshop is the presentation of a new web application of Seoski Tourism, which we have developed with Croatian Ministry of Tourism and Sports. It has two purposes. One is to create a digital catalogue of Croatian Seoski Tourism. You can see region by region some of the Seoski Tourism options – currently around 40, those who have already enrolled.

30_-_Podravina_-_Etno_rooms_at_Zlatni_klas_Otrovanec.jpgPodravina Etno rooms at Zlatni klas Otrovanec

A version of the app is currently available on the website of the National Tourist Board. But, they are building a new website. The forthcoming version of the catalogue will likely be more user-friendly with many more functions and options. On the new website, Croatia's Seoski Tourism options will be detailed in many different languages. It should be a great resource not only for tourists but for travel agencies, journalists like you and for educational institutions. That's the reason we are devoting time in our workshops to encourage Seoski Tourism providers to enroll. We are just at the beginning of the process.

11_-_Hrvatsko_zagorje_-_Grešna_pilnica.jpgGrešna pilnica in Zagorje © Jasna Podboj

The second purpose of the app is to collect information about the service providers. This info will be used by our working group when defining a Croatian model of Seoski Tourism. So far, we have taken examples from Slovenia, Italy and other countries that are successful with Seoski Tourism. But, these models were entered into our legislative system without fully considering our distinct business and cultural environments. That is now about to change.

We are very happy that, following many years of partially successful advocacy, there is now political will at a ministerial level to really shape things up, to change the laws and regulations in order to facilitate Seoski Tourism. We want to encourage more Seoski Tourism, not to have people from agriculture being turned away because of the difficulty of the process and bureaucracy.

22_-_Istria_-_Medieval_theme_park_San_Michael.jpgMedieval Theme Park San Michael © Silvia Otočan

You said part of the workshops will focus on new trends. What are some of these?

Research has been done by a working group that is developing a new tourism strategy for Croatia. It's called Strategy for Sustainable Tourism to 2030. Under the auspices of this group, a number of research fields have been analysed.

The collected data shows that a huge percentage of tourists are now more inclined to eat locally grown and healthy food. They want to spend their time on estates that are run in accordance with ecological principles. So, they really care about issues like how waste is disposed of etc. They also pay a lot of attention to culture. They are curious to learn exactly how we are living, how we are working and how we produce things. They want to learn about our society and culture. And, importantly, they really care about how they spend their money. Above all, they want to spend money in areas that can help support local communities.

17_-_Prigorje_-_Breakfast_at_Rakić_Family_Farm.jpgPrigorje Breakfast at Rakić Family Farm

For us, this is really important. Because Seoski Tourism answers these demands to an incredibly high level. We do produce local, healthy food. Not only on the agricultural estates where you can experience Seoski Tourism, but also from their neighbours who just do agriculture. We are concerned with ecology, we protect cultural heritage and the money spent in Seoski Tourism stays in local communities, where it has very beneficial effects.

In the digital promotion part of the workshops we are trying to persuade people about the importance of their online presence. Basically, these days, if you're not online, it's almost like you don't exist. So, we try to explain the importance of having good-quality photos, short videos and a regular online presence.

1_-_Baranja_-_Kulen__varci_nd_other_specialties_at_Baranjska_ku_a.jpgKulen, čvarci and other specialties at Baranjska kuća © Denis Despot

That's interesting. In some cases, it might be like two different worlds colliding - people who work in a traditional industry and a traditional environment having to adapt to a very modern way of operating. There's also another potential collision when providers learn of the expectations within modern tourism. Because these people can no longer just work in agriculture. To operate in Seoski Tourism, you're also very much expected to also be a host.

Yes. All of our current service providers who are successful within Seoski Tourism are also great hosts. It's essential. You can see it in almost all of the reviews for this kind of tourism. Guests come for the food and drinks and surroundings, yes. But, what they value the most, what they remember the most, is the host part of the experience. On the estates of Croatian Seoski Tourism, guests are welcomed like family. Across all of Croatian tourism we are expected to be good hosts. It's part of our reputation and the reason why many people come here from all over the world. In Seoski Tourism, it is vital we live up to those expectations.

13_-_Moslavina_-_Bread_from_bread_owen_at_Kezele_family_farm.jpgKezele family farm © Davor Konjikušić

Another aspect of this, which is a more recently-observed element, is that visitors often want an insight into the actual lives, even the personalities of their hosts. They want not only to taste the homemade sausages you make, but they also want to know how you do it, where you do it, how you learned to do that. When they go to Spain, they want to know how the people there make their wine. And, when they come to Croatia, they want to learn how we do it here.

So, all in all, those of us in Seoski Tourism are really busy. We are in agriculture, yes, but we are also in tourism and we are also online. With this more recently-observed aspect, we will need to try and devote even more time to our hosting. It can be difficult to balance the demands on your time. But, in our workshops, we are trying to persuade people to talk more about themselves, their lives, their cultural heritage. And, if there isn't time to do everything themselves, then to involve different and often younger generations of the family. Sometimes within the hosting or alternatively just with the online promotion and presence.

15_-_Moslavina_-_Kezele_family_farm_ethno_collection.jpgKezele family farm ethno collection © Davor Konjikušić

I've visited some family farms that were right at the start of their journey with Seoski Tourism and they seemed surprised that I was at all interested in what they do and how they do it. I think maybe they thought I was a bit crazy.

Yes, that is a response we sometimes also see at first. I think it's because our generation takes a lot of things for granted. We sometimes think that what we do is just what we do. We are not so good at showcasing it. “Why would I show someone how I make my cheese? I make my cheese like my grandmother used to make it” But, for those who open their doors to Seoski Tourism, inquiries about how they do what they do are only increasing. So, they seem to appreciate how we advise them in the workshops.

5_-_Me_imurje_-_Picnic_by_Me_imurski_dvori_restaurant.jpgPicnic by Restaurant Međimurski dvori © Igor Nobilo

We are trying to let our producers know that Seoski Tourism is not just a platform to sell their produce and an overnight stay, but it's a full experience they can sell. There are agricultural farms in Austria that are established in tourism that you must pay only to visit. Of course, that doesn't happen currently anywhere in Croatia, even though some of our Seoski Tourism estates have sections that look like museums.

Some of these aspects are very new. And the feedback is great. I truly believe there are hidden treasures to be discovered in some Croatian villages. We are here to tell that story.

IMG_0239fghj.jpgSelection of food from a Slavonian village © Mario Romulić

What is so rewarding about Croatian Seoski Tourism that international visitors would want to go to a traditional farm in some inland village instead of lying on the beach in Dalmatia for 14 days?

People come because they really want to see a different side of Croatia. And, there are many different aspects of Croatia to discover – not just Seoski Tourism, but also National Parks and Nature Parks. All of our current trends show us that more and more tourists are willing to come inland from the coast or to explore a different part of Croatia – inland Istria, for example, or continental Croatia.

20_-_Karlovac_-_Kamačnik_river_canyon.jpgKamačnik river canyon © Aleksandra Kuratko Pani

They really want to try authentic, local food. They want to eat healthy, to know what they are eating and how it is made. And, they want to experience flavours that are different from the usual ones they get from the supermarket.

6_-_Me_imurje_-_Traditional_Me_imurje_table_at_etno_restaurant_Me_imurski_dvori.jpgTraditional Međimurje table at Etno restaurant Međimurski dvori

Also, I would say that with Seoski Tourism, people get to know better an authentic version of Croatia and its culture. It's a story we hear very often from our members. Some of them are visited by large groups from cruisers. These are people who might be on a cruise on the Adriatic and who journey inland for a day trip. Or, it might be a group who are cruising the Danube and disembark to visit a family farm in Slavonia, Baranja or Srijem.

24_-__ibenik_-_Drnis_prosciutto_Ivana_Kalpi__Agroturizam_Kalpi_.jpgProsciutto from Drniš at Agrotourism Kalpić © Ivana Kalpić

When they visit farming estates on day trips, it's very often a huge 'wow' moment for them. For many, in their minds, Croatia is simply sun and sea. And that's not entirely their fault. We, as a country, have done very little until now to promote alternative sides of Croatia. The visitors experience these wow moments because of the hospitality they receive and because of the tangible aspect of the visit. This is a modern aspect – people want to touch things, know how things feel, taste, smell. They want to ride on horses or feed them. Or take part in cultural activities. These parts of a visit to Seoski Tourism are very difficult to experience anywhere else.

img_0261.jpg__648x432_q85_subsampling-2.jpg(left) Ivana Alilović, director of Zagreb County Tourist Board (right) Aleksandra Kuratko, secretary of Udruga ruralnog turizma Hrvatske (Croatian Rural Tourism Association) © Zagreb County

Udruga ruralnog turizma Hrvatske's online Seoski Tourism workshops begin today and their physical workshops continue next week in Istria.

If you'd like to read more about rural tourism in Croatia, then look here

Sunday, 5 September 2021

Žumberak Samobor Protected by Zagreb County TZ via Sustainable Tourism

September 5, 2021 – In a series of spectacular new photos, we see this vast, beautiful park and learn of Zagreb County Tourist Board's efforts to balance preserving nature, improving the park's visitor offer and implementing development necessary for the quality of life of the local population, via sustainable tourism and the EU-sponsored Pronacul project.

Žumberačka_polja.jpg© J. Škof

For residents of Zagreb County, City of Zagreb and their visitors, the most convenient thing about Žumberak Samobor Mountains Nature Park is that it's right on your doorstep. Less than 90 minutes drive to the west of the Croatian capital, it's an easy escape into a spectacular natural landscape; epic, rolling hills, gushing waterfalls and streams beside which historic water mills lie.

Mlin.jpg© J. Škof

It's the perfect place to go to free yourself of the noise, pressure and stress of life in the city. Particularly if you love hiking or cycling. There are 300 kilometres of cycling routes and 350 kilometres of hiking trails through Žumberak Samobor Mountains Nature Park. That's plenty to explore.

Miroslav2.JPG© Miroslav Vajdić

In total, a vast 342m2 of beautiful rural landscape is protected as a Nature Park. Partly, what makes Žumberak Samobor Mountains area so charming is that it is a topography that has been moulded by its inhabitants. Their agricultural efforts can be traced in the lines of fields, the dry stone walls, the crops, animals and produce found here. Their piety is the reason for the rich wealth of historic sacral buildings you can visit in the park.

Miroslav3.JPG© Miroslav Vajdić

But, this is an area that has undergone extreme population decline over recent decades. In fact, the park area is one of the least densely populated places in Croatia. The agricultural endeavours that helped shaped this pretty place are nowhere near as popular as they once were. However, the park is still inhabited. Traditional life can still be seen in Žumberak Samobor Mountains.

Miroslav.JPG© Miroslav Vajdić

One of the best ways to preserve this beautiful Nature Park, the lifestyles and endeavours of those who live there, is to receive visitors. Visiting such thrilling epic nature is so rewarding in itself, its strange to think that just be being there you're helping to preserve it.

Pronacul: Balancing Tourism, Development and Preservation of Nature

Staza_na_Žumberku.jpg© J. Škof

Žumberak Samobor Mountains Nature Park and Zagreb County Tourist Board have long been working to balance 1) the preservation of the protected area, 2) increasing and improving the park's visitor offer and 3) implementing development necessary for the quality of life of the local population.

It is to that end that Zagreb County Tourism Board have submitted Žumberak Samobor Mountains Nature Park to join the EU-sponsored Pronacul project. Joining partners in Slovenia, Italy, Greece, Serbia and Bosnia in the scheme, Pronacul's key aim is the promotion of natural and cultural heritage and the development of sustainable tourism in protected areas. The total value of the project is 1.770.348,98 EUR.


For more ideas of great places to visit and great things to do in Zagreb County, be sure to read our dedicated pages here

Thursday, 19 August 2021

Krapina-Zagorje County Becomes Part of ''Around Zagreb'' Campaign

August 19, 2021 - In addition to Zagreb County, the single destination campaign "Around Zagreb" has been extended to Krapina-Zagorje County in order to promote the diverse tourist and cultural offer on the outskirts of the Croatian capital.

After an excellent joint partnership between the Zagreb Tourist Board and the Zagreb County Tourist Board on a unique destination campaign, "Near the city, close to the heart" / "Around Zagreb", Zagreb Tourist Board this year expanded the campaign to promote Zagorje, reports HrTurizam.

The promotional campaign of the Zagreb Tourist Board "Close to the city, close to the heart" was expanded through cooperation with the Krapina-Zagorje County Tourist Board (TZKZŽ) and thus, for the first time, jointly promote Zagreb and Zagorje through a unique destination campaign with a focus on staying outdoors, in greenery and nature, and additional emphasis placed on the eno-gastronomic offer and historical heritage. The director of TZGZ (Zagreb Tourist Board), Martina Bienenfeld, pointed out that the cooperation with TZKZŽ is a logical step in upgrading the campaign "Close to the city, close to the heart".

“We have created a new visual, promotional film, as well as websites where we offer various itineraries and ideas for excursions that naturally connect Zagreb and Zagorje. So you can go on the Gastronomic Roads of Zagreb and Zagorje, experience 3 days of fun and relaxation, or look at the proposals for a fun and active weekend in Zagreb and Zagorje. There is also a new section, ''Did you know...'' which reveals that more than 75% of Zagreb covers green areas and that at least one of the 45 city parks is located in each neighborhood, as well as other attractions”, states Bienenfeld.

The head of the Tourist Board of Krapina-Zagorje County, Sanja Škrinjar, is also extremely satisfied with the first such cooperation and pointed out that the overlaps of the most important emitting markets for both destinations are certainly the starting point for the realization of such cooperation. ''We believe that we complement each other extremely well in creating an even better and richer offer for all future guests of our destinations with a tendency to extend their stay in Zagreb and Zagorje, especially since Zagorje "leans" on Zagreb and is a very good road connection between the two most important tourist destinations in the continental part of Croatia'', pointed out Škrinjar.

"TZGZ is launching the campaign in the markets of Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Germany, northern Italy, Slovenia, and Serbia, and all materials and websites are linguistically adapted to the markets we are addressing. With such facilities, we extend the stay of guests in both destinations'', concludes Bienenfeld.

The website offers creative suggestions on what to see and do, and there is also a promotional film that shows the natural, eno-gastronomic, sports, and historical offers of Zagreb and Zagorje.

Video in English, but with subtitles in four foreign languages (Croatian, Slovenian, English, and German) can be viewed and shared HERE.

Visit Total Croatia if you want to learn more about what Zagreb and Zagorje have to offer you. Now available in your language!

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

Tuesday, 6 July 2021

HNK Gorica and Zagreb County Tourist Board Join Forces

July 6, 2021 - HNK Gorica and Zagreb County Tourist Board have joined forces. The tourist board has thus become a new member of the family of partners of this ambitious first league football team.

Although football in Croatia is far from a real marketing product, the whole league is rising from year to year and thus gaining in attractiveness. On the other hand, HNK Gorica is one of the "stars" of the Croatian Football League (HNL), which has a bright future ahead of it, reports HRTurizam.

"It is often forgotten that football clubs have three categories that travel every week during the season (some play at home, while others travel to away matches), and thus achieve overnight stays in each destination. Whether they are seniors, juniors, or other categories, everyone travels to matches and has to spend the night somewhere. Our goal is to point out the potentials of sports tourism and its role in the development of overall tourism," said Ivana Alilović, director of the Zagreb County Tourist Board and added:

"Tourism is an important component of our economy and the situation with Covid-19 has shown us that we need to think in the other direction. HNK Gorica is one of the key drivers of sports life in Velika Gorica and Zagreb County. Still, it is also one of the key carriers of our accommodation capacities in the entire county. Therefore, we must support such a club in activities, in every opportunity to attract teams from various countries to our area. We are extremely grateful for everything they have done in this segment of ours."

Ervin Kolarec, Deputy Prefect of Zagreb County, also came to support this cooperation. “HNK Gorica is a great promoter of both its city and our county, which is why I am thrilled that the club has connected with our tourist community. Since, among other things, more than 450 children are active in this club, the Zagreb County will be with HNK Gorica in the future as well," said Kolarec.

The cooperation between the club and the county tourist board will be mutual, diverse, and possibly a bit unusual. ”We will look in some new directions, which will allow us some new types of promotion of our region. For example, why wouldn't HNK Gorica do one of its trainings at Turopoljski lug? Is there anything nicer?" suggested Ivana Alilović.

Football clubs are an excellent medium for communicating the tourist offer and additional content for all visiting teams coming to the destination. Football is one of the best marketing media globally, and even the Croatian National Tourist Board is a sponsor of the Croatia national football team. 

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

To learn more about sport in Croatia, CLICK HERE

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

Tuesday, 22 June 2021

Successful Tourist Board Synergy: Around Zagreb Promotes Capital and Surroundings

June 22, 2021 - The Zagreb Tourist Board and the Zagreb County Tourist Board are again cooperating in promoting Zagreb and its surroundings through a unique destination campaign - Near the city, Near the heart / Around Zagreb. 

Near the City, Near the Heart is a joint promotional campaign created to develop a year-round platform to promote the rich offer of the capital and its surroundings, reports HRTurizam.

In this sense, as a destination campaign, it addresses key markets, promoting the outdoors, greenery, and nature with a focus on health and sustainability, and raising awareness of Zagreb and its surroundings as a desirable environment and tourist destination.

This year's edition of the campaign introduces certain novelties, and they are presented in more detail by the director of the Tourist Board, Martina Bienenfeld: “The success of the campaign so far has prompted us to improve our platform and present it to key markets. So - with a refreshed visual and itineraries - we created a new section, 'Did you know?' which presents interesting things from our environment. We are now launching the campaign in the markets of Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Slovenia, Serbia, and Germany, and we will soon expand it through cooperation with Krapina-Zagorje County."

"The campaign will be conducted online through advertorials and banners for a month. Advertorials will be adapted linguistically for each individual market and will present a rich cultural offer, with a focus on living in greenery, recreation, and sustainable tourism, all through interesting stories that present the current offer of Zagreb and its ring," explains Darja Dragoje from TZGZ.

In the last two years, the cooperation between these two tourist boards has grown into a whole series of campaigns and concrete tourist products that the guests of the capital can enjoy. The profession also recognized the partnership cooperation of these tourist boards as an example of cooperation in the field that brings very concrete results to all stakeholders.

The Zagreb County Tourist Board director, Ivana Alilović, says: "Domestic and foreign tourists do not think about administrative borders, but about the content. Precisely for this reason, the cooperation between the tourist boards of Zagreb and Zagreb County was logical. I am delighted that the director of Binenfield recognized the great potential of Zagreb County because Zagreb and the ring together are stronger. We have combined urban and rural, and with health and cultural tourism, rich outdoor content, and authentic enogastro offer, we have made this destination even more attractive. The enogastro service will focus on the new campaign, which with new visuals tells a new story of a metropolis and its surroundings, which complement each other with quality and rounded tourist products. With such facilities, we extend the stay of guests in both destinations."

The entire offer is united on, and information is currently available in Croatian, English, German and Slovenian.

For more, follow our travel section.

Thursday, 22 April 2021

Zagreb County Tourist Board Accepts #AIChallenge

April 22, 2021 - Recognizing the critical importance of using artificial intelligence in all aspects of life, business, and tourism, the Zagreb County Tourist Board accepts #AIChallenge and is the first tourist board in Croatia to do so!

Artificial intelligence is becoming an increasingly important factor in the intelligent management of all aspects of life and business and especially proved to be so in tourism. Artificial intelligence has taken an important place to achieve intelligent, sustainable, and responsible tourism - it provides a high level of ability to respond quickly, agile and personalized to the needs of tourists, local stakeholders, and the environment, but also improve welfare and transforms society for the better in the coming decades.


Zagreb County Tourist Board

That is why it is crucial to educate yourself about the advantages, possibilities, and challenges of artificial intelligence and master the skills of applying artificial intelligence, which the Zagreb County Tourist Board recommends learning more about at the Elements of AI course - a free online course on the basics of artificial intelligence, for which you do not need to know anything about higher mathematics or programming.

Namely, the Zagreb County Tourist Board recognizes the critical importance of using artificial intelligence in all aspects of life, business, and tourism. It is the first tourist board in Croatia to join the AI Challenge organized by CroAI, Agency 404, and the University of Zagreb and Reactor and University of Helsinki. This challenge aims to educate 1% of the Croatian population about artificial intelligence. With this, the Zagreb County Tourist Board invites everyone to join the #AIChallenge challenge and step together into the future of tourism - in an innovative, sustainable and responsible way.

Anyone looking to learn more about Zagreb County, its destinations, local specialties, wooden architecture, or 'green ring,' visit the Tourist Board website HERE

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

Wednesday, 2 December 2020

Zagreb County Tourist Board Supports Local Producers With New Campaign

December 2, 2020 – With the new campaign Christmas Magic In Your Home, Zagreb County Tourist Board supports local producers and encourages others to do the same

As Hina reports, this commendable campaign in which Zagreb Tourist Board supports local, small producers from its area will last from 3 December 2020 to 24 December 2020. The local producers are collected in interestingly designed categories that will change in weekly cycles: 1. Relax and reward your body, 2. Decorate your home with Christmas magic, 3. Prepare your holiday table, and 4. Sweet Secrets of Zagreb County.

With an additional promotion and a prize competition, which they will conduct on social media during the Advent period, they want to raise awareness of how important it is to appreciate local goods and like Zagreb County Tourist Board supports local producers, they hope others will do the same. Zagreb County Tourist Board also points out that, in these uncertain times, cooperation between all participants of the tourist offer is more necessary than ever.

Since this year has brought many challenges for both small and large businesses, any help and support is useful. More than ever before we were grateful for local products that are at our fingertips. Advent being traditionally a time of giving, perhaps its time to share such gifts from closer to home.


Source: Pexels

"In Zagreb County, there are many craftsmen, hardworking people who turn natural resources from their homeland into unique local products," said Ivana Alilović, the director of the Zagreb County Tourist Board. "At the same time, they combine the traditional and the modern. With their creativity, they refresh our heritage and enrich the entire offer of the region. Natural cosmetics and healthy food, medicinal preparations, imaginative decorations and everyday items for the home, irresistible treats etc. Each of these products bears the signature of its origin and its author."

"Production is usually small and limited, but with a high level of quality and personal commitment. Domestic goods that are truly domestic, but also different. We want to raise awareness about the importance of buying from local producers and help all of them in the branding and promotion of products that we can be proud of."

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Sunday, 28 June 2020

Holidays Have Never Been Closer: Zagreb County Tempts Domestic Tourists in New Campaign

June 28, 2020 - With an exciting new campaign, Zagreb County wants to position itself as the destination for domestic tourists in continental Croatia. 

"A Holiday Has Never Been Closer!" is the new slogan of the promotional campaign of the Zagreb County Tourist Board focused on domestic guests, which lasts until August 1, reports HRTurizam. The focus of the campaign is on accommodation facilities, namely holiday homes with swimming pools, eno-gastro tourist facilities and attractions in Zagreb County.

The campaign lasts from June 26 to August 1, 2020, and was launched to encourage the inhabitants of Croatia to explore continental destinations in Zagreb County in the coming period after a long period of isolation.

"An important part of the campaign is accommodation facilities, rural refuges and a top eno-gastronomic offer, and through these facilities, we see an opportunity to position our county as an ideal weekend destination primarily for residents of the capital, but also for all those who truly enjoy peace and beauty without mass tourism. The Green Zagreb Ring offers a lot of quality content - half an hour from the center of Zagreb, so it is a great opportunity to escape from stress and city crowds," says Ivana Alilović, director of the Zagreb County Tourist Board.

The campaign places additional emphasis on connecting wine roads, local food producers, attractions in the area that enable an authentic, safe and sustainable stay for all guests.

"The rich tourist offer of our county is the result of intensive cooperation between producers and those who offer guests finished products. The emphasis is on multisectoral connections, and in addition to the promotion of wine roads, quality local products of our family farms, as well as rural refuges, we want to show how it is possible to create a value chain in these challenging times," concludes Alilović.

A special platform and an interesting collaboration with Designer Outlet Croatia

In fact, this is the culmination of the campaign, which began with a wine video postcard #NazdraviZaBoljeSutra (Cheers to a better tomorrow) in which several winemakers from the area of ​​Plešivica, Zelina and Moslavina wine roads were presented.

For the needs of the project, a special web portal was launched - in which the entire offer is completed and all information about all partners is available.

The campaign promotes a sustainable and safe stay, but at the same time, quality experience in a sustainable destination.

Particularly interesting is the part of the campaign where each visitor, when booking one of the 30 rural holiday homes in the first weekend of July (smart connection with accommodation), receives a coupon for 350 kuna to use at Designer Outlet Croatia.

With online and offline promotion, special web platforms, various articles and visuals, and cooperation with Designer Outlet Croatia, which generates a large daily frequency of visitors, but also through the coupon gives an additional motive for positioning potential domestic tourists, primarily from Zagreb.

The green Zagreb ring is certainly ideal as an escape from the city crowds and stress, which offers a lot of quality content, all half an hour from the center of the Croatian capital.

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

Tuesday, 7 April 2020

Zagreb County Tourist Board Promotes Local Wineries in Corona Era

April 7, 2020 - The Zagreb County Tourist Board is choosing to communicate with potential travelers during the corona era - and promoting local winemakers at the same time.

The Zagreb County Tourist Board, in collaboration with the renowned GRIFFIN Sparkling Wines from Plesivica, has launched a raffle on its official Facebook page where participants will have the opportunity to win a bottle of Griffin Dark Side champagne for Easter, reports HRTurizam.

The promotion runs through Thursday, April 9, and for more details, visit the official Facebook page of the Zagreb County Tourist Board.

In the coming days, more winemakers from Zagreb County will join this promotion, points out Ivana Alilović, director of the Zagreb County Tourist Board, such as winemakers from the Zelinska wine road, Škrlet from Moslavina, wines from the Samobor area, and more.


This is an excellent move by the Zagreb County Tourist Board, as it promotes local wineries and winemakers from the Zagreb County area, and keeping communication going during times of crisis. 

Remember, during an emergency or crisis, it's worst not to communicate. While most tourists recycle old content, it is certainly commendable to see initiatives like this and different types of communication.

Of course, this action will not sell hundreds of wines, but it certainly provides a positive example and thus promotes local products.

Can other tourist boards join this action and make the same or similar promotion in their area, and help local winemakers who are also directly affected by this situation?

Otherwise, the vineyards of Zagreb County belong to the Bregovita Hrvatska wine region. Situated on elevated terrain, these are the slopes of the mountains and the lower highlands, which on their southern slopes have excellent conditions for producing high-quality grapes.

The climatic characteristics of the Zagreb County area led to the development of a typical continental assortment. These are the same varieties as in the neighboring countries, and introduced into these parts a hundred years ago (mostly chardonnay, riesling, pinot white, red, Sauvignon white, Graševina, and others) in the Zelina region, and according to Moslavina, also autochthonous škrlet. Of the international red varieties are portugizac, syrah, merlot, and cabernet sauvignon.

According to county data, Zagreb County boasts 5 million vines planted on more than 900 hectares of land. It is at the very top of Croatia in terms of the number of winemakers, wine labels, wine roads and wine projects in general.

Among the most successful projects are county brands - such as the Kingdom of Zelina and Portugizac Plesivica. There are also three wine roads - Samoborska, Plešivička and Zelinska, while in the Ivanićgrad area bordering Moslavina, there is a “Škrlet Land".

Another good move of the Zagreb County Tourist Board should be highlighted. As great initiatives have opened up for Facebook groups with a list of local OPGs selling products and delivering, as well as a boom in opening web stores for them, the Zagreb County Tourist Board has made an effort and collected all e-marketplaces in the Zagreb County area in one place.

You can find online markets in Zagreb County HERE

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

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