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.
Today will probably be a busy day in Dubrovnik, according to the cruisers schedule published on the official page of Port Dubrovnik. This Friday is marked with red colour, which means that over 7500 passengers are expected.
According to the schedule, five cruise ships will arrive to Dubrovnik – Mein Schiff 2, Costa Luminosa, Star Pride, Azamara Quest and MSC Poesia. All the cruise ships are coming through the morning and three of them will stay until night hours. Costa Luminosa is supposed to leave at 1 pm, while MSC Poesia will leave at 4:30 pm.
During the days like this, it’s normal to expect traffic jams and big crowds in the Old City. If you are visiting Dubrovnik or living here, try to prepare as much as you can – and by preparing we mean try to be as calm as you can or avoid the crowds.
Good thing is that by the end of the year there is just one more red cruiser day. It will be next month, on October 13th. And don’t worry, it’s not Friday 13th – it’s Monday.
After the recent arrival of Andy Garcia, another famous actor joined the film crew of the ‘’Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again’’ on the island of Vis.
The Irish actor Pierce Brosnan well known for his role as the secret service agent of her Majesty, arrived from London to Split Airport accompanied by his wife Keely Shaye Smith and several members of the film production team.
With his elegant posture, irresistible smile and nice friendly approach, Brosnan absolutely enchanted Split and confirmed all the rumours about him; that he is down to earth kind of person and a true gentleman.
Brosnan spent only couple of minutes on the airport until his ride arrived that took him and his company to the port where they embarked on the boat and headed for Vis to join the rest of the film crew.
The Municipality of Konavle will have special attraction within the Archaeological Museum in Pridvorje, which will allow visitors to ‘’dive’’ into the depths of the sea and observe archaeological sites that are located there. This interesting project is planned to be completed by 2019 and will be made in co-operation with Italy and Greece.
The underwater archaeological sites in Cavtat, the Italian sites Baiae and Capo Rizuto, and the underwater museums in the Sporades of Greece, have agreed on the collaboration.
First, special cameras will record the underwater archaeological sites. Then with Virtual diving system, 3D visualization, 360 degrees video player, 3D video monitors and interactive touch screens it will be enabled for the visitors to ‘’dive’’ into the depths of the sea without any danger – from the safety of museum. They will get a chance to interactively explore the rich underwater archaeological site near Cavtat.
A new survey shows that the Czech Republic is the unhealthiest country in the world, however, devastating data shows that Croatia is not lagging far behind.
Data obtained from the World Health Organization, the CIA World Factbook and the World Lung Association show that Eastern Europe is the unhealthiest region in the world, with 9 of the top 10 places on the list occupied by countries in the territory.
Out of 179 world countries where the survey was conducted, Croatia placed as the 7th on the list of the unhealthiest countries around the globe. Worse than Croatia are Russia, Slovenia, Belarus, Slovakia and Hungary, whilst Lithuania and the United States shared the 10th place on the list.
Criteria taken into consideration for the survey are alcohol consumption per capita per year, tobacco consumption per person per year and obesity prevalence within population. Astounding results show that on the average every person in the Czech Republic drinks 13,7 litres of alcohol a year, whilst Russia has the highest number of smokers.
Interestingly, the obesity problem is most observed in Oceania with small Pacific islands being home to some of the most obese populations on the planet. On the other hand, according to all three criteria, the world’s healthiest country is Afghanistan, followed by Guinea, Niger, Nepal, DR Congo, Eritrea, Malawi, Somalia, Mozambique and Ethiopia.
James Bond will be filming in Dubrovnik next January. According to a report in Jutarnji List the most famous British spy will be filming the latest 007 movie in Dubrovnik at the beginning of 2018 and from sources the scenes could be spectacular.
Daniel Craig will film the 25th Bond movie in Dubrovnik with a host of expensive cars, encounters with old acquaintances from previous films and a near escape from drowning. It is expected that Croatia will earn millions from the upcoming movie not to mention the added publicity and future fan based tourism.
According to a source the locations for the Bond movie are still under negotiation, although Dubrovnik is touted as the only location in Croatia.
Over the past few years Croatia, especially Dalmatia, has been the set of numerous Hollywood blockbusters and hit-series. Star Wars is set to hit the screens this winter, also the latest History Channel series Knightfall will premiere in December and then in the spring of 2018 the Leonardo Di Caprio produced Robin Hood: Origins will be broadcast. All of these A-line productions were partially recorded in Dubrovnik. And not to mention the final season of Game of Thrones which will begin filming soon and is rumoured to “heavily” feature Dubrovnik. The addition of the most famous spy franchise in the world adds another huge production on Dubrovnik’s already impressive list.
Just the Game of Thrones series has earned millions of Euros for the city and the country. The Zagreb Institute of Economics announced in July that just the tourism excursions based around the series inspired by George R. R. Martin's literary series "Ice and Fire" had earned around 130 million Euros.
Taron Egerton filming Robin Hood in Dubrovnik - Ivana Smilovic
The financial benefits of Robin Hood were estimated to be between 40 and 60 million Kunas during a recording that lasted for only two weeks.
And James Bond could well eclipse Robin Hood and even push Game of Thrones. The last Bond “Spectre” movie had a budget of $300 million and estimates suggest that filming in Dubrovnik could cost between four and six million Kuna per day. Once further details are revealed about the size of the production in Dubrovnik and the locations required a better estimate on the budget, and potential earnings for Croatia, can be made.
These details might take some time to come out as it appears the production company are still annoyed at the former mayor of Dubrovnik, Andro Vlahusic, for announcing that Bond was to use Dubrovnik as a location.
In the new movie Daniel Craig pitted against a blind but ingenious villain in the background of a criminal organization called the Union. The screenwriters announced that it would be a brilliant continuation of the highly successful "Spectre", based on Raymond Benson's "Never Dream of Dying" and is entitled "Shatterhand".
The main producer of "Bond" Barbara Broccoli is working hard to re-engage the talents of Adele for the title track of the new sequel.
And apart from Dubrovnik the new Bond movie will be filmed on location in France and Japan.
The sea water of the Dubrovnik – Neretva County have been tested for the ninth time this summer season to make sure they comply with the Program for the Determination of Sea Quality.
From the 14th to the 22nd of September the 116 beaches of the county were tested and 115 passed the testing whilst only the beach in Mlini failed due to “short term” pollution. Additional samples of the bathing water in Mlini were taken on the 16th, 18th and 19th of September and a control sample on the 22nd of September after which the Mlini sea water was passed.
Out of a total of 116 beaches the sea water at 113 beaches was rated as a sea of outstanding quality. On the Srebreno beaches in Župa dubrovačka and Okuklje on the island of Mljet the sea was of good quality, while the sea on the beach in Ston was of satisfactory quality.
As far as tourist figures are concerned there can be no doubt that 2017 will be remembered as a record year. With the news that the Dubrovnik City Walls has welcomed a million visitors comes more news on a million landmark but this time it’s a double million.
Croatian airports have achieved magnificent results - in the first seven months of this year nine Croatian airports recorded 5.2 million passengers or 17.7 percent more compared to the same period from last year.
And this Friday Dubrovnik Airport is expecting its two millionth passenger of 2017. This will be the first time in history that Dubrovnik Airport has handled two million passengers in a year showing just how successful this year has been.
The two millionth passenger will arrive on a Croatian Airlines flight from Zurich. Just two months ago the airport welcomed its millionth passenger, the Canadian Cameron Neil Smith, on the 13th of July, proving that August and September were both record months.
Due to the interest of foreign visitors, the Europe House Dubrovnik has extended the holding of free mini-courses of Croatian language until the 29th of September.
The Europe House Dubrovnik started two years ago to hold free Croatian language courses for foreign visitors. The response was excellent, and the courses were also organized in the summer of 2016. This year the courses started in early July and were scheduled until September 15th. Due to many enquiries from tourists staying in Dubrovnik by the end of September, the courses were extended until the 29th of September. If there are new queries, the courses can be held in October as well.
At the Europe House Dubrovnik, on the street of Nikola Tesla 9, there is also the Honorary Consulate of the Republic of France, which is why, in addition to the participants of the Croatian courses, French citizens are often accompanied by French citizens who need assistance during their stay in Dubrovnik
Croatian language courses are only part of the activities of this Dubrovnik association, founded 22 years ago. In November 2013, the Europe House of Dubrovnik opened the Information Centre on the European Union, Europe Direct Dubrovnik, and since then has organized in Dubrovnik the marking of the European Day of Languages on the 26th of September. The Council of Europe initiated this initiative in co-operation with the European Union in 2001, and since then throughout Europe, in late September, numerous activities have been held to promote cultural diversity and language learning, both formally and informally. The Dubrovnik Europe House Program was awarded for with an Innovation Award from the Council of Europe for two consecutive years.
This year a fun-educational program is scheduled for the 28th of September and it all begins at 10:30 on Stradun, in front of the church of St. Blaise. It will last up until midday and will be attended by students from several elementary and high schools in Dubrovnik, RIT Croatia students, members of several associations and representatives of several honorary consulates. During the program, young mobile librarians of the European House of Dubrovnik will sell, in front of Sponza Palace, second hand books in foreign languages. Foreign language skills can be tested at their stand as well.
All visitors to Dubrovnik are welcome to join either as a public or as a direct participant, and are encouraged to say something, sing or play in whatever language they want. Celebrate with us Europe's linguistic and cultural diversity!