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.
After a complex four-year reconstruction, the City Museum of Korcula on the Square of St. Mark in Korcula is officially open, and is the only museum institution on the island founded in 1957.
The museum fulfills its mission of preserving, studying and communicating tangible and intangible, cultural and natural heritage, being an indispensable driver of social life, as well as cultural tourism.
The renovation of the museum is an integral part of the Project "Rural educational cultural and ethnographic tourist attraction", which was co-financed by the European Union from the European Regional Development Fund.
The Mayor of the City of Dubrovnik Mato Franković, yesterday received a visit from the Qatari Sheikh Faisal Bin Qassim Al Thani and his delegation. Sheikh Al Thani is the founder and CEO of Al Faisal Holding, one of the leading and largest Qatari companies based in Doha.
Sheikh Al Thani, whose delegation consists of his sons and other representatives of Al Faisal Holding, expressed his enthusiasm for his stay in Dubrovnik so far, especially the preserved cultural heritage and natural beauty. With words of welcome, Mayor Franković briefly introduced them to the rich history of Dubrovnik and its significance in the time of the Dubrovnik Republic, but also to today's economic and other opportunities as one of the world's tourist pearls.
According to his own words, Sheikh Faisal Bin Qassim Al Thani arrived in Dubrovnik because Al Faisal Holding is interested in exploring business and investment potentials with an emphasis on the hotel and tourism segment. Since this conglomerate is successfully engaged in museum activities, the possibilities of developing cultural cooperation between Doha and Dubrovnik, i.e. Qatar and Croatia, were also discussed. Both sides expressed their interest in continuing the talks in order to realize the opportunities for cooperation.
The Russian national airline, Aeroflot Airlines, is introducing wide-body aircraft on the route between Moscow and Dubrovnik from August 1! Aeroflot restarted flights between Dubrovnik and Moscow this summer after a long break. The lines currently operate daily, mainly with narrow-body aircraft type A320 and A321, reports Croatian Aviation.
Due to the high demand, this airline will send wide-body Airbus A330-300 aircraft with between 296 and 302 seats in the fleet of this airline on a daily basis from the beginning of August.
By changing the type of aircraft on this route, Aeroflot now offers more than 18,000 seats between Moscow and Dubrovnik in August!
Anyone who has visited Dubrovnik during the summer will be all too aware of the challenges that the tourist season can pose. The high temperatures, hordes of cruise boat tourists, and inflated peak season prices mean that many visitors fail to get the best of the city. Most tourists are in Croatia for the beaches and the sparkling Med, and only visit the cities for a few photo opportunities.
This is, of course, rather a shame. Dubrovnik in particular has a lot to offer, but summer tourists rarely manage to appreciate all there is to do and see here. In order to do Dubrovnik properly, winter is the only time to visit. Temperatures are mild, rarely dropping below 13°C during the day, you will not be fighting with the crowds just to take a photograph, and the off-peak prices are much more reasonable. Let’s take a look at some of the things you can do during the quieter months.
City walls and old town walking tour
The old town of Dubrovnik is surrounded by 24m high walls, going back as far as the 13th century. Built to protect the inhabitants from attack by land and sea, the walls make a 2km circuit round the distinctive red rooftops of the old town buildings. This is the perfect vantage point to see not only the beautiful architecture, but the stunning natural surroundings and the clear Mediterranean Sea.
A walk around the battlements can also be paired with a guided walking tour through the streets at ground level, or the two activities can be spread across a couple of days. No matter how you choose to do it, these tours are far more enjoyable during the cooler season. In July, temperatures can soar to 30°C and you will be fighting with the cruise ship crowds. For a relaxed visit, the best photographs, and to learn the most about the fascinating history of the town, winter is the only time we recommend doing this particular activity. If history doesn’t thrill you, then you can do a Game of Thrones filming location tour instead.
Another great walk, more of a hike really, is up the small mountain behind the city, Mount Srđ. The views are second to none, taking in the whole of the area’s coastline and some inland mountain views as well. The top of the mountain is also accessible via road and cable car.
Restaurants, bars and casinos
Dubrovnik is a real hotspot for great food and cool hangouts. Some of the more iconic restaurants are booked solid throughout the busy period, so there is no chance of getting a reservation unless you do it well in advance. One such restaurant is situated at the top of Mount Srđ (use cable car to get there), appropriately named Panorama, serving excellent food with the most spectacular views in the region. During winter there will be no problem securing a table next to the window, and you can take all the time you need to enjoy the food, wine and incredible vista.
Winter is also a great time for bar-hopping in the old town, when things are quieter and more relaxed than in the summer. Unlike the busy season, you will be guaranteed to find a seat in most places, and the whole vibe is just much much more laid back. Wander at your leisure through the narrow streets and find hidden gems where you can sample some fantastic local beers and wines. It’s usually still mild enough to sit outside on one of the sea-facing bar terraces.
For a change of pace, the city also has a couple of casino establishments that are worth a look. A picturesque, less than half hour walk north along the coast from the old town will bring you to the best of these, the Merit Casino Libertas. This is the best location if you fancy a mix of machines and live gaming tables, as most other establishments provide slot games and not much more. Merit is open daily between 4pm and 4am, so this is a night spot to be certain. If the weather turns really sour and you experience those strong “Jugo” winds with gusts fo rain, you can still enjoy reliable Croatian Internet connections and play casino games online. In Croatia you can also get PaySafeCard anywhere if that is your preferred payment method.
Winter markets and festivals
The month of December has its own particular charms in Dubrovnik. During advent, the run-up to Christmas, the whole city is alive with celebrations including concerts by the city’s symphony orchestra and other cultural festivities. Market stalls line many of the streets, selling everything from food and drink to local produce and handicrafts.
With the streets of the old town festooned with twinkling Christmas lights, there is no more magical time of year to see the city. Stick around for New Year’s Eve and you will be guaranteed a great night of partying as well.
Local day trips
Dubrovnik is a great base for some interesting day trips in the local area. Get out of the city for a day and go to nearby Neretva Valley for the end of the mandarin harvest, if you visit in October or November. There are also wine tours of the vineyard region on the Pelješac Peninsula that run year-round.
As a hopping-off point, Dubrovnik is very convenient for some of the most beautiful locations along the Adriatic coast. The area is dotted with islands, many of which are served by regular ferries year-round. A wonderful day trip for some hiking and exploring nature during the cooler season. Stay very local, or take a bit longer and visit the national park on the island of Mljet.
Hotels and spas
Winter is also the time to bag a bargain in Dubrovnik. The city is full of luxury and boutique hotels, all of which have special off-peak rates. A beautiful room with a view may be extortionate during the summer, but shop around and you may find something that is well within budget during the quieter months. Even if you don’t want to stay somewhere so fancy, some of the bigger hotels have spas which do day passes for visitors, again much cheaper in the winter season.
In the last 24 hours, 191 new cases of coronavirus infection were recorded in Croatia, the National Headquarters of the Civil Protection of the Republic of Croatia reported on Saturday.
The number of active cases in Croatia today is a total of 1013, of which 121 people are in hospital - 15 on ventilators.
Since February 25, 2020, when the first case of infection was recorded in Croatia, a total of 362,496 people have been infected with the new coronavirus, of which 8,245 have died. A total of 353,238 people have recovered, 135 of them in the last 24 hours.
There are currently 3,194 people in self-isolation.
To date, a total of 2,242,487 people have been tested, of which 6,118 were tested in the last 24 hours.
In the Dubrovnik-Neretva County, 36 new cases of coronavirus infection have been recorded in the last 24 hours.
These are 15 males and 21 females; 12 from Dubrovnik, six from Metković and six persons who do not reside in the county, four from Opuzen, two persons each from Konavle, Korčula and Ploče, and one person each from Slivno and Župa.
Thirteen people made a full recovery - seven from Dubrovnik, three from Metković, two from Konavle and one from Ston.
In the last 24 hours, 965 samples were processed, and since the beginning of the pandemic, a total of 94 883 samples have been analyzed.
Eleven people tested positive for coronavirus were hospitalized in the Dubrovnik General Hospital.
There are 298 people in self-isolation, and in the last 24 there have been five cases of violation of the self-isolation measure, all at the border.
It was a full moon last night, and not only a full moon but also a so called Buck Moon. The night sky over Dubrovnik turned a rather eerie shade of orange as the full moon rose slowly. This orange coloured moon lasted for a couple of hours last night at dusk and then again this morning as the sun set.
Curiously, the Buck Moon will be a different colour depending on where you are in the world you are. But in Dubrovnik it looked like the world’s largest mandarin!
The reason for the Buck Moon appearing is due to the sun, earth and moon being in perfect alignment, but as the moon is roughly five degrees off the plan of earth's orbit, the light from the sun will fall fully on the moon's side facing earth.
The Central Bureau of Statistics has published data on population migration in Croatia. In 2020, 33,414 people immigrated to the Republic of Croatia from abroad, and 34,046 people emigrated abroad. The balance of migration of the population of the Republic of Croatia with foreign countries was negative and amounted to - 632.
In 2020, 25.3 percent of Croatian citizens and 74.7 percent of foreigners immigrated from abroad, while 61.4 percent of Croatian citizens and 38.6 percent of foreigners emigrated. In the total number of immigrants and emigrants, there is a significant share of foreigners within the annual quotas of employment permits, according to the CBS.
Out of the total number of immigrants to the Republic of Croatia, 28.2 percent immigrated from Bosnia and Herzegovina. Out of the total number of emigrants from the Republic of Croatia, most persons emigrated to Germany (34.2 percent).
And men are the most likely to enter Croatia, as the figures show that in 2020 almost 75 percent of the immigrants were male. And in the total number of emigrants abroad, there was also a higher share of men (64.4 percent). The largest number of emigrants was between the ages of 20 and 39 (47.1 percent).
In 2020, the City of Zagreb (20.0 percent) and the County of Istria (11.4 percent) had the largest share in the total number of immigrants from abroad to the Republic of Croatia.