Wednesday, 3 August 2022

Eurozone Accession: Are Croatian Exchange Offices Doomed to Failure?

August the 3rd, 2022 - Are Croatian exchange offices doomed to failure as Croatian Eurozone accession rapidly approaches, and with the sending of the kuna to the history books set to take place on the 1st of January, 2023?

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, six hundred kuna for one hundred euros has become a common amount that is obtained when exchanging these currencies during the height of the summer tourist season when you have to convert money at local Croatian exchange offices. That is all due to alter with the arrival of the euro as the country's official currency, and the need for Croatian exchange offices to exist at all will be greatly reduced. Many will close their doors and never open them again, reports HRT.

If you ask the tourists spending time (and money) here in Croatia themselves, everything is very clear and simple, adopting the bloc's single currency is a good move for Croatia. But when it comes to Croatian exchange offices, most of them anyway, they'll have to think about another business model entirely if they want to survive the introduction of the euro from the first of January next year.

"It will be difficult for Croatian exchange offices who will continue to try to work only in the foreign currency exchange business to survive because 80, 90 percent of the turnover takes place around the purchase and sale of euros, and without this turnover it will be difficult for them to survive," warned Sergi Gabor, president of the Association of Croatian Exchangers.

Financial experts have hope and believe that most Croatian exchange offices can be transformed and remain in business when the changeover happens, and that not all of them will be closed due to the demand for digital money, as well as savings and exchanges being done in other currencies.

"Perhaps there will be a continuation of turbulent economic trends at the level of Europe or the world, and in that case it will be possible that in Croatian exchange offices, there will be a tendency for people to be dealing with other currencies such as the Swiss franc or the US dollar,'' believes Hrvoje Japuncic, a financial expert.

For more on Croatian Eurozone accession, make sure to check out our dedicated politics section.

Wednesday, 3 August 2022

Tomislav Fain: Private Renters Not Registering Around 40% of Tourists

August the 3rd, 2022 - Tomislav Fain, the president of the Croatian Association of Travel Agencies, has claimed that private accommodation renters/landlords renting out their properties to tourists during the summer season aren't bothering to register as many as 40 percent of their guests via the eVisitor system at all.

As Poslovni Dnevnik writes, the problem being currently faced by the wider area of Zadar County is illegal accommodation renters and illegal work/earning in this sector. The president of the Association of Croatian Travel Agencies, Tomislav Fain, has recently stated that up to forty percent of guests are staying in the country undeclared, pointing out that it is necessary to strengthen inspection supervision to curb this trend.

Tomislav Fain told HRT that a large number of landlords who have a categorisation on their properties for renting them out to foreign visitors during the summer for some quick and easy cash, do not register their guests via the eVisitor system or even attempt to do it in the ''old way'' with MUP.

"It's very simple, we have a certain number of capacities in a particular place, and when we look at the application that goes through eVisitor, we arrive to some very simple data, that forty percent of guests are simply not being registered at all.

We also need to be aware of the fact that in addition to those renters that aren't registering their guests, but have a categorisation, we also have a certain number of accommodation facilities which don't have a categorisation, and yet they still continue to receive guests and still advertise their apartments for rent on platforms,'' he said.

Tomislav Fain emphasised the fact that this figure is even higher, and creates various problems, from communal ones to the development of a specific destination. Therefore, incorrect data is obtained, and the preparation of upcoming tourist seasons cannot be carried out with quality or accuracy in mind.

''Some individuals who don't register guests don't bother issuing an invoice for the guest either, so they're not in the VAT system, and therefore they're paying less to the state. Some individuals are careless, they simply forget to register their guests and don't do it with any underhand motives in mind. They should be appealed to, to not be so careless,'' he said.

For those who deliberately avoid their obligations, inspection supervision should be strengthened and the proper punishments should be doled out, Fain believes.

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

Wednesday, 3 August 2022

Croatian Accommodation and Hospitality Sectors Enjoying More Traffic Than 2021

August the 3rd, 2022 - The Croatian accommodation and hospitality segments of the overall tourism sector are enjoying more traffic than they did last year when concerns about coronavirus restrictions and lockdown worries continued to prevail.

As Poslovni Dnevnik/Jadranka Dozan writes, as usual, the fastest barometer of consumption trends is the Tax Administration's data on the fiscalisation of issued receipts and bills/invoices, and during the height of the summer months, the figures related to the tourist season are always firmly in the foreground.

They, on the other hand, say that tax payers from the tourism and catering/hospitality sector issued bills worth a total of 7.5 billion kuna last month, which is as much as 42.6 percent or 2.24 billion kuna more than back during the same month last year.

Consequences of inflation

Approximately equal turnover was recorded in the Croatian accommodation segment (3.73 billion) and in hospitality and catering (cafes, restaurants, bars and other activities involved in the preparation and serving of food and drink, who reported 3.76 billion kuna), with the fact that the increase (compared to last July) was somewhat more pronounced in catering (+45 percent) than in the Croatian accommodation segment (+40 percent).

As was the case during the first half of the year, such an increase is only partially the result of a higher number of bills and receipts issued, i.e. to a considerable extent it also reflects significantly higher prices.

July 2022, however, greatly exceeded the achievements from the pre-crisis (and record) year of 2019. In the Croatian accommodation and catering and hospitality segments in July 2019, the value of fiscalised bills issued stood at 5 billion kuna (2.4 plus 2.6), which means that this year's result exceeds it by an impressive and far from insignificant 50 percent.

Including the first six months, when companies engaged in the business of providing accommodation services were paid with cards or cash in a total of 4.12 billion kuna (compared to last year's 1.72 and 3.32 billion kuna realised in the first half of pre-pandemic 2019), this tourist year obviously will convincingly break the record with revenues.

Of course, for the industry itself, the story is not complete without the cost side of the story, which is also growing strongly owing to ongoing inflation, but that is a separate topic. It is similar when the cumulative results of cafes, restaurants and other such facilities which are engaged in the preparation and serving of food and drinks are in the middle.

They reported 8.23 ​​billion kuna in turnover in the first half of the year, which was almost 120 percent more than last year and a quarter more than what was recorded back in 2019, when bills in the amount of 6.6 billion kuna were fiscalised and issued by the middle of the year.

Tourist movements have a little influence on the fiscalised turnover of a number of other activities. So, for example, enterprises in the transportation and storage category issued receipts and bills worth a massive 542 million kuna last month alone, which is as much as 62.7 percent more than the amount issued last July and a quarter (or 110 million kuna) more than were issued during the same month of 2019.

Those subject to fiscalisation in arts, entertainment and recreation this July reported 310 million kuna in turnover, which is 44 percent more than last July (215 million kuna) and 14 percent more than pre-pandemic 2019. Tourist consumption, of course, is also very important for the retail trade sector across Croatia. Last month, retailers (excluding motor vehicles) issued fiscalised bills worth 12.6 billion kuna in total.

Compared to the same month last year, this is about 1.72 billion kuna or almost 16 percent more. At the same time, the increase is somewhat more pronounced in the case of supermarkets and hypermarkets (so-called non-specialised shops mainly selling food, drinks and tobacco products) which have largely strengthened their network all the way along the coast.

Last month, they issued fiscalised receipts in the amount of 6.74 billion kuna, which has exceeded last year's achievement by almost a fifth, or by more than 1 billion kuna.

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

Tuesday, 2 August 2022

Successful Night in Bulgaria for Dinamo Zagreb against Ludogorets

August 2, 2022 - Dinamo beats Ludogorets 2:1 in the first leg of the Champions League 3rd round qualifiers played in Razgrad on Tuesday night. 

Dinamo visited Ludogorets in Razgrad for the first match of the Champions League 3rd qualifying round. Ludogorets has been the champion of Bulgaria for the last 11 seasons.

Recall, Dinamo advanced to the 3rd qualifying round after beating Shkupi on a 3-2 aggregate last week. After 2-2 in Zagreb, Dinamo won in Skopje with a minimal 1-0 to move forward. 

If Dinamo advances past the Bulgarian champion after two matches, the Zagreb club will face the winner of Norwegian club Bodo/Glimt and Lithuanian club Žalgiris in the Champions League play-off. On the other hand, if Ludogorets moves forward, Dinamo will play in the Europa League play-off against the loser of the same pair. 

Due to injuries, Dinamo was without Kévin Théophile-Catherine, Mahir Emreli, Josip Šutalo and Marko Bulat.

Lineups

Ludogorets: Padt, Cicinho, Plastun, Verdon, Nedjalkov, Jordanov, Piotrowski, C.Souza, Tekpetey, Sotiriou, Rick

Dinamo: Livaković, Ljubičić, Perić, Lauritsen, Ristovski, Ivanušec, Ademi, Mišić, Baturina, Oršić, Drmić

Match report

Ludogorets threatened Dinamo’s goal quickly and recorded their first corner in the 3rd minute. Dinamo was quick to react and took the early lead just 3 minutes later. Lauritsen assisted Perić, who shot from the edge of the penalty area for 1:0. 

Just three minutes after that, Dinamo surprised Lugogorets again. The clumsy reaction of Ludogorets goalkeeper Padto resulted in an own goal to put Dinamo ahead at 2:0 in the 9th minute. Dinamo had another chance five minutes later, but Perić wasn’t as lucky this time. 

Ludogorets reduced Dinamo’s lead in the 22nd minute when Tekpetey left Dinamo goalkeeper Livaković powerless for 2:1. Ludogorets was hungry to equalize for the remainder of the first half, which ended 2:1. 

Dinamo coach Ante Čačić started the second half with one change. Dario Špikić entered for Luka Ivanušec. Ludogorets, however, made two changes. Cauly Souza and goalkeeper Sergio Padt remained in the dressing room, and midfielder Dominik Jankov and Croatian goalkeeper Simon Sluga entered the match. 

Ludogorets had an excellent chance two minutes into the first half, forcing Livaković to make an incredible save off the goal post. Ludogorets shot over the crossbar less than 10 minutes later. 

Bruno Petković replaced Josip Drmić in the 59th minute. 

Dinamo’s defense had to clear two dangerous attempts by Ludogorets in the 65th and 67th minutes, the latter of which was saved brilliantly by Livaković. Ludogorets continued pressing to get the second goal, even hitting the post a minute later. 

Čačić replaced another attacker in the 71st minute - Menalo was subbed on for Oršić. 

Ludogorets brought on fresh strikers in the 79th minute to increase their hopes of getting a goal. In the 82nd minute, Dinamo’s Menalo was nearly one-on-one with the Ludogorets keeper but shot over to keep the match 2:1 with less than 10 minutes to go. 

Čačić subbed off Baturina for Boško Šutalo in the 86th minute. 

Another dangerous chance for Ludogorets in the 89th minute just missed the Dinamo goal. A minute later, Petković took on three defenders and forced the ball out for a corner which Sluga punched out. The ref added 4 minutes of stoppage time to the match, in which neither team could score. 

The return match will be played in Zagreb on August 9. 

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

Tuesday, 2 August 2022

New, Fourth Mammoth Tooth Found in Mohovo near Ilok

August 2, 2022 – Maybe you have never heard of Mohovo, and maybe you know that they keep finding mammoth teeth there... There is really no in-between. A new, fourth mammoth tooth was found on Saturday, 30th July. 

As SiB reports, ten years after he found the first mammoth tooth in his village, Goran Popović from Mohovo found another, fourth, mammoth tooth on Saturday.

He informed his friends and the public about the phenomenal discovery by posting on Facebook, stating that he was filled with happiness, emotions, and optimism.

"I had that instinct again, walked through our beautiful village, and then it happened – the fourth mammoth tooth. All of a sudden, a part of the hill collapsed and the tooth just popped out. Now I'm completely convinced that this is no longer a coincidence", he wrote and invited everyone to join in and help, because a lot of support is needed to start the systematic search of the location.

SiB spoke about this discovery with Goran, who, still under a strong impression, said that not a single find was the result of purposeful digging and searching, but that he found each tooth completely by accident.

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Photos by Dolina Mamuta

“Last year, the Minister of Culture, Nina Obuljen Koržinek, visited the site of the discovery, the county and city authorities came, and we received promises from all of them that they would do everything in their power to start archaeological research. I know that the activities in the wider Vukovar area focus on Vučedol, but I believe that the finding of another tooth will motivate the authorities to pay attention to Mohovo as well. It would be an important step in the promotion of our small village and it would certainly make it more attractive not only in terms of archeology but also in terms of culture and tourism”, said Popović.

The relevant ministry and the Ilok City Museum were immediately informed about the discovery, as well as the City of Ilok, and the Vukovar-Srijem County. He emphasized that this place with only two hundred inhabitants obviously hides great secrets that experts need to investigate. It all started in the fall of 2012 when, while digging a septic tank in an orchard, he found the first fossil remains of a woolly mammoth, and a discovery was made four years later in another location. Goran states that short research, in addition to the woolly mammoth and the woolly rhinoceros, led to the discovery of fossil remains of a hyena, a wild horse, and a bison. Four years after the second discovery, there was a third one, when the fossil remains of a mammoth were found again near the village pond. Realizing the potential hidden in their village, several young residents of Mohovo founded the association Dolina Mamuta (Mammoth Valley). They organised workshops, installed a straw sculpture of a woolly mammoth, a woolly rhinoceros, and a hyena in the village centre, and launched the events "Advent in Mohovo" and "Mammothfest", the second edition of which is planned for this October.

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Photo by Dolina Mamuta

“The creation of a sculpture made of solid material is nearing completion, for which we were provided funds through donations after the straw sculpture was destroyed in a fire.

For the second "Mammothfest", we plan to organize an exhibition about the findings so far and additionally motivate the authorities for systematic research” he stated.

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

Tuesday, 2 August 2022

Patriarch Porfirije Consecrates Church where Nikola Tesla was Christened

ZAGREB, 2 August, 2022 - The head of the Serbian Orthodox Church (SPC), Patriarch Porfirije, on Tuesday consecrated in Smiljan, near Gospić, the church where scientist and inventor Nikola Tesla was christened.

Milutin Tesla, Nikola Tesla's father, served in the church where Nikola Tesla was christened in 1856.

The patriarch said that the church consecrated today was built when the Serbs came to the Lika region in the 1600s as "a place of prayer, peace, love and gathering, meeting with God and each other, a place of finding peace in Christ, peace within oneself and between one another."

Pofirije said that "the Ustasha wanted to eliminate this place, so the temple was destroyed in 1941. It was rebuilt in 1986 and devastated again in the 1990s, and now it has been rebuilt, in the same place where the original church was built in the 17th century."

He recalled that this is the church where the world-famous scientist Nikola Tesla was christened.

Messages for peace between Serbs and Croats

When asked if he was satisfied with the unity in Croatia, the Serb Orthodox dignitary said that "one can and should always do better, everywhere, we should always try to do more and be better every day, wherever we are, in Croatia or in some other place."

Lika-Senj County Deputy Prefect Milan Uzelac said that Patriarch Porfirije's message was a message of peace "for all of us who are here, and for peace between Serbs and Croats."

Tuesday, 2 August 2022

Šibenik Police Detain 2 People for Attack on Reporter Maja Sever

ZAGREB, 2 August, 2022 - Šibenik-Knin County police have brought in two people for questioning in connection with an incident on the island of Tijat, where, according to the media, HRT reporter Maja Sever was attacked on Monday while photographing the usurpation of the shore and the public property.

The police said a criminal investigation is underway, and two people have been brought in to establish the circumstances, after which the public will be informed accordingly.

On Monday, a reporter for the national HRT broadcaster, Maja Sever, accompanied by Judge Sandra Artuković, went to see if the Spirito restaurant on the island of Tijat was open. The restaurant was recently closed by the state inspectorate because it did not meet the minimum technical requirements. According to witnesses, the two women were attacked by the restaurant's owner, who seized a cell phone and threw it away.

Sever said that after she called the police they told the owner that that was a public area and that no one could stop them from taking photos.

"I didn't take anyone's photo but of the beach. I wasn't on any assignment," explained Sever.

According to the media, the restaurant owner believes that the cove where the restaurant is located is theirs, even though there is no proof of that in the land records.

Tuesday, 2 August 2022

More Fires Near Sibenik, Roads Closed, 3 Canadairs in Action

August 2, 2022 - More fires near Sibenik, with roads closes and 3 Canadairs providing aerial firefighting support.

As reported by Index.hr, with live updates:

More fires near Šibenik, closed guide ring road, 3 canards arrived

A LITTLE before noon, several fires broke out in the wider Šibenik area. It is burning on the highway at the turn for Jadrija (there are two fires there) and in Dubrava in the direction of the Podi industrial zone. Canadians arrived to help.

2 minutes ago

Police: Journalists are asked not to try to pass the roadblocks
"Three fires are currently active in the area of ​​the Šibenik-Knin County, two of which are in the area of ​​the Vodice ring road at the turns towards Jadrija and Srima. The third fire is in the area of ​​Dubrava.

Due to the work of the firefighters, the following roads are currently closed:

Section D-8 (Adriatic highway) from the turn onto the Benkovac road to the end of the Vodice ring road

Podi-Dubrava section.

Journalists who are in the vicinity of the fire are asked not to try to pass by the roadblocks," the police reported.

21 minutes ago

Three Canadair fire-fighting plans have arrived

As we learned from Vodice firefighters, three Canadairs have arrived to help them a few minutes before 1 p.m., and all available firefighting forces are on the ground.

So far, it is not close to buildings, except for a couple of agricultural houses, they added.

You can't go to Šibenik from Vodice, they say.

"Within 5 minutes, it started burning in three places," the firefighters told us. Two fires are burning near the turn for Jadrija and one near Šibenik's Dubrava.

27 minutes ago

Notice of HAK (Croatian Roads)

Due to the fire, the section between the Šibenik bridge and the end of the guide ring road has been closed. The detour is on the state road DC27 towards Benkovac.

41 minutes ago

There are more fires

According to the first information, it is burning in two places between Vodice and Jadrija, and the fire also broke out near Dubrava.

43 minutes ago

Closed Vodice ring road

The commander of JVP Vodice, Ivan Begić, told Sibenik.in portal that the Vodice bypass towards the Hacienda club is closed.

You can follow the latest on Index here.

Tuesday, 2 August 2022

Croatia Registers 1038 New COVID Cases, 10 Related Deaths

ZAGREB, 2 August, 2022 - Croatia has registered 1038 new COVID cases and 10 related deaths in the past 24 hours, the national COVID response team reported on Tuesday.

Currently, there are 8,309 active cases in the country, including 673hospitalised patients, 26 of whom are on ventilators, while 4,580 people are self-isolating. 

Since the beginning of the pandemic, a total of 1,187,825 COVID cases have been recorded in Croatia; 16,336 patients have died as a consequence and 1,163,180 have recovered. 

To date, 59.57% of the total population, or 70.85% of adults, have been vaccinated.

Tuesday, 2 August 2022

Biograd na Moru as a (not so) Alternative Destination

August 2, 2022 – Don’t fancy the crowds of Split or Dubrovnik? Finding accommodation on the islands has become a bit complicated? Don’t worry, we’ll sort you out with an underdog, Biograd na Moru.

The national media are beaming with pride reporting record overnight stays, music festivals are back in full force, and the motorways are finally paying off again. Croatian tourism is where we all hoped it would be. In fact, we’re running out of space with the most popular destinations including the famous cities, Istrian villages, and the islands of Dalmatia. It’s time to start looking for alternatives. We tried telling you to go see Lika and Gorski Kotar, Slavonija and Baranja, but we do understand the desire to stay close to the sea. This is why today we will share a little gem that has got it all. Welcome to Biograd na Moru, famous among Croatians and Czechs, but still waiting to be fully discovered.

The little town of some 6000 residents is located only 30 km south of Zadar and about 50 km north of Šibenik, or 130 km from Split. It is nestled between two bays and overlooks the most indented part of the Adriatic coast. Surrounded by national parks and nature parks, it boasts plenty of tourist and recreational facilities but keeps a calm, homely atmosphere even in the height of summer. Get to know this charming little place through our top list of activities in Biograd na Moru. Here are some of our favourites that we suggest you try this summer:

Beach Hop

Whether you are the type to go for an early morning run and swim, like to chill all day or go late night dipping, you will find a spot that suits your needs. With the most famous ones being Bošana, Dražica, and Soline, Biograd offers a variety of terrain and conditions on its beaches. They range from pebbles and rocks, an open swimming pool for training, to a sandy beach perfect for the little ones. There is plenty of space both in the sun and in the shade. For perfect comfort, we suggest renting a lounge and/or an umbrella. As for sustenance and entertainment, you can find pretty much anything there. The little stands include everything from bakeries, fast food and ice cream to fresh fruit and salads. As for the little ones, there are water slides, aqua parks, playgrounds and attractions such as VR.

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Early morning at the beaches of Biograd. Photos by Author

Chase Sunsets

Thanks to the neighbouring islands being so dense and so close to Biograd, a sunset will look different depending on where you stand. If you plan it just right, you could have it so that you can still see the sun nesting between the islands from one point when it’s not visible from another point just a few hundred metres down. Whether you want to see it reflecting in the sea, disappearing behind Pašman, or glistening through the trees, one thing is always true – every sunset is more beautiful than the previous.

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Photos by Author

Count the Islands

The big ones, the one with the lighthouse, the heart-shaped island… Ugljan, Pašman, Dugi Otok, Sv. Katarina, and Galešnjak can all be seen from Biograd or places nearby. Hop on a ferry and visit some of them, or try counting and naming them while having your afternoon swim, we promise it’s fun both ways!

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Galešnjak Island, photo by PIXSELL (Filip Brala)

Eat and Drink

With pubs and restaurants densely populating the entire stretch of the beach, as well as the city centre, we challenge you to stay hungry or thirsty in Biograd! Start with brunch at the beach, have your afternoon iced coffee in the shade of one of the beach bars, go about your evening enjoying some fresh local seafood followed by Italian-inspired gelato, and of course, round it all up with a cocktail or two right by the sea. If you prefer cooking at home, get up early to catch the local fishermen coming back from their nightly catch and buy some of the best fish directly from them, or visit the local market for more fresh produce. As for edible souvenirs, you can never go wrong with some dried figs and olive oil which are produced in something like every other house. If you notice fruit or olives in backyards, try knocking on their doors and finding out if you can buy some to take home. Chances are, it won’t take more than a few knocks to declare mission success.

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Photos by Author

Get Some Movement In

After you’ve eaten and fed your entire family, never go swimming! Embrace the healthy Dalmatian ways and chill in the shade for a bit until it all settles down. Only after a little nap under the pines will you be ready to move. The 4 km stretch by the sea should be enough for recreational joggers, and if you get up early you will be rewarded by the sun rising above the pines in the most charming of ways. If you prefer running long distances or cycling, we suggest heading out of Biograd, and following the Adriatic Highway towards Zadar for some truly breathtaking views. With most of it being covered with cycling paths, it is suitable for all kinds of activity. It will take you through a few charming little villages, but its true beauty lies in the fact that for the most part, it passes right by the sea and provides perfect little private swimming spots.

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Photo by Adventure Park Biograd

Go on an Adventure

If swimming, running or cycling doesn’t cut it for you, and you need a little bit of adrenaline to spice up your day, try one of the activities at the beach, in the forests, or nearby. Our favourite beach activities include parasailing and jet skiing, followed by renting a SUP and exploring the bays. If you’re looking to entertain the whole family, you can also rent a paddle boat and try sliding down into the open sea. Needless to say, always make sure the weather conditions are right and listen to the advice of experts to stay safe! For those who aren’t afraid of heights, check out Adventure Park Biograd and test your climbing, hanging and ziplining skills, or head out for a day of rides in Fun Park Mirnovec.

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Photo by PIXSELL (Dino Stanin)

Discover Vransko Jezero

Tired of the beach, had too much ice cream, or maybe the sea is too salty? Head out to Lake Vrana, a nature park just a short drive from Biograd, which is also the largest lake in Croatia. With an area of 30.2 km2, it makes up its own ecosystem, with interesting flora and fauna. It is filled with brackish water and is home to many species of fish and birds. The area of the park also encompasses a few localities dating as far back as the 9th century. Even if you’re only out for a day of birdwatching and walking, there is plenty to see. If you’re looking for a more active visit, try renting a bicycle or a kayak, or hike to one of the viewpoints to see the Kornati National Park from above.

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Photos by PIXSELL (Hrvoje Jelavic and Dusko Jaramaz)

For more, check out our lifestyle section.

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