Sunday, 23 February 2020
Mark Thomas

Mark Thomas

Mark Thomas - The editor and big chief of The Dubrovnik Times. Born in the UK he has been living and working in Dubrovnik since 1998, yes he is one of the rare “old hands.” A unique insight into both British and Croatian life and culture, Mark is often known as just “Englez” or Englishman. He is a traveller, a current affairs freak and a huge AFC Wimbledon fan.


Zagreb Airport was the 115th busiest in Europe in 2019 according to data released from the European Airport Trade Association.

The busiest airport in the region was Belgrade Airport, which by handling 6.1 million passengers last year found itself in 89th position.

Last year Zagreb Airport handled 3.4 million passengers, just over 45,000 aircraft landed or took-off and 12.5 tonnes of cargo passed through the Croatian capital’s airport. Zagreb was the busiest airport in Croatia, followed by Split and Dubrovnik. In fact Split Airport was the 117th busiest airport in Europe last year, whilst Dubrovnik finished as the 129th busiest airport in Europe.

London Heathrow, Paris Charles de Gaulle, Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Madrid and Barcelona were the busiest in Europe.


One of the world’s most popular car rally, the World Rally Championship, could hit the streets of Croatia next year, according to a report by the Croatian Auto and Carting Association. The top man of the sport, Oliver Ciesla, visited Zagreb this week and apparently offered a stage of the famous race to Croatia.

Start your engines as the second most watched racing sport in the world, after Formula 1, could be screeching around the streets of Croatia this October. According to the reports Ciesla spoke to potential organisers, the City of Zagreb and the President and Secretary of the Croatian Auto and Carting Association. And after the meeting the City of Zagreb announced that they fully supported the project and would welcome an event that would attract around 80 million fans.

"After seven years of talks about hosting the WRC in Croatia, we have an official offer to make a final check, after which the doors to WRC's is open. The importance of this event for Croatia is also shown with the support of the Croatian Government, the City of Zagreb and other institutions. Thanks to the Mayor, our organizing team and of course the WRC promoter for the specific offer. There are a lot of agreements ahead, but we are on the right track,” said Davorin Štetner, the President of the Croatian Auto and Carting Association.



The former Croatian President, Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic, had requested an office when she left her position as the leading politician after losing the Presidential elections, and she has got her way after the Croatian government granted her wishes. On Thursday the government passed a decision to grant Grabar-Kitarovic the use of a state-owned villa in Zagreb which she will use as her office in the future.

Apart from the office, Grabar-Kitarovic was also given the right to a car, a driver, and two staffers, with all the office expenses paid for by the government, reports the state agency HINA.

And the Minister for State Property, Mario Banozic, commented that “Most probably, it will be one section of the building, covering about one hundred square meters, which can be physically separated from the rest of the residence.”

According to Croatian law, any former president can ask for a state-funded office. The only former head of state who used this right so far was Stjepan Mesic, who served in 2000-10. After stepping down, he moved into a state-owned house in Grskoviceva Street which was converted into his office.


Dubrovnik might well still have its winter jacket on, however mild and sunny, but that hasn’t stopped the plethora of stunning photos on Instagram.

Check out our top five Dubrovnik Instagram photos from this week and keep sending us your own photos and videos of the region.


When compared with newspapers, TV and magazines, the radio industry is a media that is still holding its position on the market and proving popular with the public. And although newspaper circulation is falling drastically across the country the number of radio stations has remained solid and in fact across the European Union is one of the leaders.

In 2009 there 192 radio stations in Croatia whilst in 2017 this number had dropped to 157, and 904 people were employed in the radio industry. In 2017 Croatia was in ninth position as to the number of radio stations.

In the European Union in 2017 Spain had the largest number of radio stations with a massive 963 stations, followed by Italy 720 and Greece with 622. Whilst at the other end of the scale Slovakia has only 16 radio stations, Estonia 10 and Luxembourg only 6 different stations.

Taking into account member state population size, the number of radio broadcasting enterprises per million inhabitants also differs greatly between EU Member States. The highest ratios were recorded in Slovenia (76 radio broadcasting enterprises per million inhabitants), followed by Greece (58), Cyprus (43), Croatia (38), Hungary (32) and Portugal (28), while the lowest ones were observed in Germany, Poland, and Slovakia with 3 radio broadcasting enterprises per million inhabitants.

On this day, eleven years ago, Dubrovnik was under a thick blanket of snow as a polar front brought extremely cold weather to the whole region. On the 18th of February 2009 Dubrovnik was hit by one of the strongest snowstorms in its history and the whole city was under 10 centimetres of snow.

One of the largest snowstorms in history hit the city on Wednesday the 18th of February. After thunderstorms and rain, and then with the strengthening of the north wind the temperature dropped to -1 ° C, and then heavy snow fell in the Dubrovnik area for almost the entire second part of the day.

Of course the heavy snow brought a complete collapse to the traffic of the city and even some parts of the city were left without electricity, meaning many citizens were left in the cold.



The levels of gross domestic product across Croatia are just as diverse as the landscape with the capital having by far the largest GDP. According to figures just released by the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS) the GDP per citizen in 2017 amounted to 11,893 Euro. Along with Zagreb the other three bid earners were Istria, Primorje-Gorski Kotar and the Dubrovnik-Neretva County.

Expressed in Kuna, the gross domestic product (GDP) per capita in 2017 was 88,726, which is aa increase of 5.4 percent compared to 2016. Statistics also show that the GDP per capita in Croatia was only 61.7 percent of the EU 28 average.

The final annual GDP for Croatia in 2017 amounted to 366.43 billion Kuna or 49.12 billion Euro.

Zagreb completely dominates Croatia’s GDP with more than a third of all business activities taking place in the capital. In 2017 the total GDP of Croatia was 125 billion Kuna, or 34.1 percent of the total Croatian GDP. In fact, Zagreb was the only area of Croatia that saw GDP higher than the EU 28 average.

Only three other counties have a GDP higher than the Croatian average, Istria, Primorje-Gorski Kotar and the Dubrovnik-Neretva County.
According to the CBS, Virovitica-Podravina County has the lowest GDP per capita in 2017, which was 45.8 percent less than the Croatian average.


“My first ever Croatian show! See you in July, Rovinj! Xx,” commented the hugely popular singer Dido on her Twitter account as she announced her first ever concert in Croatia.

Dido, who has had global hits with Life for Rent, Here with Me and Thank You, is one of the biggest selling English singers of all time and has won a string of awards including Brit Awards, two Grammy nominations and two World Music Awards.


Dido will perform at the Rovinj Summer Music festival on the 25th of July and already the organisers have announced her concert on their social media channels with the message “Dido's coming in Croatia for the first time ever. We're going to revive some beautiful years in Rovinj!”

Dido's first two albums are among the best-selling albums in UK chart history, and both are in the top 10 best-selling albums of the 2000s in the UK.

The Voice of Dubrovnik


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