Sunday, 19 August 2018


Presentation of tourism and gastronomy offer of the city of Graz has been held in the warm and welcoming atmosphere of Hotel Lapad for the second night of Good Food Festival. Graz is the Styrian capital and also a sister city of Dubrovnik, so it was special pleasure to learn a bit more about the city and its food. 

Menu called 'Flavours of the Styrian autumn' was a pure delight, prepared by chefs Michael Hebenstreit from restaurant Eckstein and Milivoj Novak from the restaurant Starcke Haus. The meals were: From the Murza water source, Pork from the Styria volcanic region and Sweet temptation.
In case you wonder what is hidden behind those names, the starters were organic red trout baked in its own juices, pumpkin, juicy tomato, pumpkin oil and fresh grape juice. The main course was medium-well baked fillet with fresh herbs, baked pork cheeks, crispy pork belly, chanterelle mushrooms, giant beans/fried onions and a slice of whole-grain bread. And the dessert were dumplings with fresh homemade cheese, plum compote, ground walnuts, chocolate sticks and sour cream. All of the meals were accompanied with good Styrian wines and pleasant music.

- This festival is really amazing – commented an American couple that has also been on presentation and tasting 'How to make homemade pasta' in the Sesame Restaurant and we couldn't agree more!

 

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Aquatika, the first freshwater aquarium in the region will open its doors to visitors in Karlovac in the Karlovac County on the 22nd of October.

The freshwater aquarium which has 25 pools with 5,000 fish from hundred species from Croatian rivers is an investment worth around 37 million Kunas and was financed with 98 percent from the operational program ''Regional competitiveness'' co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund.

On the eve of the opening Damir Jelic, the mayor of the city of Karlovac, visited the aquarium and said that it would be a unique institution in Croatia which would present the richness of flora and fauna of Croatian and European rivers and lakes, a project that had never been seen in the region before.

''This is not surprising considering the fact that no European country has such diverse and preserved rivers as Croatia. In addition, Karlovac as the city of four rivers – Korana, Kupa, Mreznica and Dobra – is the right place for the presentation of the water resources and richness we have'', said Jelic, adding that the city and the Karlovac County had lived for a long time for this project through its construction worth almost 37 million Kunas.

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A sixty-five year old German tourist was rescued from crashing waves in front of the Hotel Bellevue. She was saved by the ship 'Dance' owned by Dubrovnik Port Autorithy, which whisked her to the Old Port from where she was rushed to the Dubrovnik General Hospital. 

Hotel Rixos Libertas staff had noticed the Geramn swimmer struggling and immediately called help.

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Reader's photo (William Stock - UK) 

Autumn is here and the weather is far from nice – grey skies everywhere accompanied with the boring rain. If anything, it's the perfect time to dream about the summer that has passed. Those how have visited Croatia this summer have perfect memories to remember, just like the couple that has published video on Youtube channel DIANO MAYA, showing moments from their vacation filmed with GoPro camera. Beautiful shots of the clear blue sea and scenery of Dubrovnik, Split, Sibenik, Trogir, Krka, Lastovo, Vis, Island Scedro, Solta and Brac make this short video captivating. Take a look and dream about summer with us.

Boat to visit beautiful island of Lokrum, located just 600 meters from the Old City, will keep on transfering visitors until first of November for sure and if weather stays nice, it will keep on going for a week more – Marko Tevsic, director of the Lokrum island nature reserve confirmed for Dubrovacki vjesnik.

It's planned that one day of the weekend will be 'Open Day', so all the visitors could enjoy the beauty of Lokrum for free. You can visit this little heaven every day from 10 am to 5 pm and the boat leaves every full hour.

A presentation of the gastronomy offer of the Karlovac County and the Guinness Book of World Records strudel took place tonight in the Klarisa Restaurant in the heart of the Old City of Dubrovnik. In the beautiful ambient of the restaurant, the lovely hosts from the Karlovac County took care that all of the visitors felt welcome and learnt something new about that part of Croatia.

Typical food from this part of Croatia is: wild mushrooms and other fruits of the forest, game, fish from the local rivers and flour from stone mills on the Slunjcica river. Some of the most traditional meals could be tasted on this dinner that was accompanied with music and chit-chat. Guests, who were a mix of locals, foreign journalists and others, could choose what they want to try. And the offer was really great: the Frankopan platter (deer ham, bear ham, wild boar sausage), basa cheese with corn-bread, the Josipdol cheeses, the Ogulin fingers – for starters. Then it was time for porcini soup, after which the main courses arrived: stuffed cabagge rolls with white polenta, boar stew with pupmkin gnocchi, lamb under the lid, catfish in cream and wine sauce, perch in seeds and corn flour crust, stuffed trout. Deserts were: chesnut cake, plumd dumplings and strudel.

When it comes to strudel, another interesting story pops up. In September of last year in the small village of Jaskovo, near the Dobra River and the city of Ozalj, the longest strudel in the world was baked using the old recipe of the Ozalj region. Measuring 1,479 metres long, it was registered in the Guinness Book of Records. Tonight visitors were able to see how the strudel was made by the one of creators of the longest strudel Marica Vrbancic who said that she loves Dubrovnik and that she's been making strudels since her childhood.

 

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Recently presented maps on poverty, spatial distribution of poverty and social exclusion in Croatia, show that continental Croatia has a higher rate of poverty than the coastline region of the country.

Detailed maps were created by the Ministry of Regional Developments and EU Funds in cooperation with the Ministry of Social Policy and Youth, the Croatian Bureau of Statistics and the World Bank in order to help policymakers in better understanding the spatial distribution of poverty, especially at the level of municipalities and cities thus trying to reduce regional differences and eradicate poverty and social exclusion in Croatia.

According to results of the poverty survey for small geographic areas there is heterogeneity of poverty in Croatia with the poverty rate of 19.4 percent in the continental region and 12.6 percent in the Adriatic region.

By the income criteria, the estimated risk of poverty in Croatia in 2011 was 19.2 percent, which means that around 800,000 people had an annual income lower than 24,000 Kunas, which was the risk of poverty threshold for a single-member household. The lowest estimates of poverty rate risk were recorded in Zagreb (9.8%), in the Primorje-Gorje County (11.9%) and in the Istria County (11.9%), whilst the highest were recorded in the Brod-Posavina County (35.9%), the Virovitica-Podravina County (33.4%) and in the Vukovar-Srijem County (31.9%).

By the expenditure criteria, the estimated risk of poverty in Croatia in 2011 was 17.1 percent, which means that around 700,000 people had annual expenditures of less than 23,919 Kunas, which was the risk of poverty threshold for a single-member household. The lowest estimates of poverty rate risk were recorded in Zagreb (5.9%), in the Primorje-Gorje County (9.1%), whilst the highest were recorded in the Pozega-Slavonia County (32.5%), in the Brod-Posavina County (33.9%) and in the Karlovac County (34.3%).

Video of Dubrovnik, shot by an Austrian filmaker during his Yougoslavia tour in the summer 1972 has brought a glimpse of past. In the video, published on the website Footageforpro, it's easy to get that 'old' feeling. Dubrovnik is less crowded, but there are some tourists, as well as marines, recognizable in their uniforms. Also, it looks like the Green Market was a heart of the City. 

On his tour, Austrian also made videos in Hvar, Korcula, Orebic, Mostar and Kotor.

- I used to collect 8 mm films I find on Ebay and I have a collection of 500 reels. I have a restoration system that makes them look like they were shot yesterday! – shared Daniele Carrer from Footageforpro with us.

Now, sit in the time machine and enjoy watching Dubrovnik in 1972.

Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra will have a concert on Friday, October 21, at the Church of St. Dominic at 8:30 pm. The orchestra will be conducted by the Israeli conductor Noam Zur, who is conducting from 2001 in renowned concert halls and leading orchestras of the United States, Germany, Israel, Mexico, Argentina, South Africa, Switzerland, Austria, France, Estonia, Romania, Scandinavia, the Czech Republic, Serbia and Italy. The last two years Zur was the musical director of the Opera Arias Festival"Tino Pattiera" which takes place in July and has the equally successful collaboration with the Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra during the year. As a soloist in Mozart's Concerto for Horn and Orchestra no. 4 in E flat major, Toni Kursar, the first horn player of the Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra, will perform.

Kursar has won first prizes in national competitions during his schooling, and in 2004 he received the Rector's Award of the University of Zagreb, and the Ivo Vuljevic award of the Croatian Musical Youth. He worked in international youth orchestra YMISO, Young Dunav Philharmonic, Junge Philharmonie Salzburg, the Mostar Symphony Orchestra, Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra, Croatian Chamber Orchestra, the Zagreb Philharmonic Orchestra, Nordic Chamber Orchestra and the Symphony Orchestra Liechtenstein. In 2006 he enrolled in graduate studies in the class of professor Radovan Vlatkovic on the University of Music and Performing Arts "Mozarteum" of Salzburg and 2008 he got his master's degree. He studied with H. Baumann, A. Friedrich, R. Vlatkovic, F. Re Wekre, F. Gabler, L. Garcia, B. Lipovsek.

In addition to Mozart's Concerto for Horn and Orchestra no. 4 in E flat major, the program includes Wagner Seifried Idyll, WWV 103 and Brahms Serenade no. 1 in D major, Op. 11th.

One of my friends got his car badly scratched on the parking lot the other day by an unknown driver who didn't bother to leave a note or his contact. He told me about this over coffee and was understandably angry about it. I tried to calm him down, but agreed this was a pretty lousy move by the other driver. “I hate people like that.” – we both agreed. It was not until later, when I was driving back home that I remembered I actually did something similar myself once.

It was back in the summer of 2011, one of the worst years of my life. Without getting into too much detail, many things went wrong that year and I found myself in financial problems, dealing with family issues, working a job I didn't particularly enjoy, and being generally very unsure about what the future holds. During one of the most hectic days of that summer, I was rushing to a meeting and tried to park my car on one of the improvised, unpaved parking areas around my workplace. The car in front of me seemed a bit too close, but I tried to do it anyway and ended up scratching the guy's bumper. I was forced to find another spot and parked the car. At first I thought about leaving a note with my phone number, but thought I'd best get to that meeting first as I was already late. The meeting lasted a while and was going to turn into a business dinner. It was possible for me to go out for a minute and leave the note at any time, but as time passed, I started thinking I might as well try to get away with it. After all, so many things didn't go well for me that year, maybe this was a chance to take something back from the Universe. Well, as you may imagine, it didn't quite pan out. It turns out, a passer-by saw the whole thing, wrote down my license plate and put his own note on the windshield of the car I damaged. So, I got a call during my business dinner from the owner of the car and had to deal with it right then and there which was quite embarrassing. Eventually, it all turned out fine and in the end I was able to sort it out with the car owner.

In a country which has a number of its leading politicians on trial for various acts of corruption, this might not be a very exciting crime story, but the point of it is not to illustrate how poor of a criminal I am. The point is that I truly do hate people who mess with other people's property and try to get away with it, and there I was, doing the exact thing I hate in others. My excuse was that I was struggling myself that summer and badly wanted to put a stop to a series of unfortunate events. However, isn't that the whole point of trials to our decency and morality? They always come when we are unprepared and weak. The vast majority of us know well what is right and what is wrong to do in a certain situation, yet sometimes we fail to do the right thing. Instead, we get to make up some sort of an excuse. When it comes to big issues in society, we tend to blame the larger forces and claim we are too small to make a difference. When we do the wrong thing in order to profit, we say that someone else would have done it if we didn't (this one is popular in Croatia for the past couple of decades). When we hurt the ones we love, we blame it on the circumstances or a momentary lapse in judgement, and when we scratch someone's car on the parking lot, we say it was an accident and we have filled up our quota of bad luck in a year.

It doesn't work like that, unfortunately. Decency is not very flexible and we don't get to have a free pass for doing something wrong or not doing what is right because we've had a rough day. It definitely isn't easy, but I've found that most of the time when I did the right thing to my own immediate harm, I would end up feeling good about myself. There is a sense of wellbeing when you take the moral high ground and no one can deny this. Who knows, maybe someday it comes back to you in some way. At least I know people are not talking trash about me over coffee… I hope.

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Bozidar Jukic, AKA The Restless Native, is a Dubrovnik local with too many interests to name them all, with writing being at the very top of the list. He is a lover of good food, music and film, and a firm believer in the healing power of laughter. His professional orientation is towards tourism and travel so it comes as no surprise he spends most of his time alongside Mrs. Jukic running their own local tour company. Their goal is helping travellers from all over the world get a more intimate experience of Dubrovnik and what it has to offer. To find out more about their work, visit their website or Facebook page.
www.insiderholidays.eu
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