Sunday, 21 July 2024
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.


From the 1st of January 2017 a ban on breeding animals for fur production came into force in Croatia.

The ban was adopted by the Animal Protection Act in 2006 and ''thanks to the Croatian Ministry of Agriculture which listened to the public and protected the animal rights in Croatia, the country finally celebrated the entry into force of a fur farming ban’’, said from the Animal Friends Croatia association.

The association stated that the enforcement of the ban was a result of a long-lasting and persistent struggle of citizens, professionals, politicians, vets, members of the EU parliament, institutions and associations for the protection of animals during a ten-year long transitional period in which chinchilla breeders had tried to have the ban abolished.

Since the ban on breeding furry animals became part of the Animal Protection Act in 2006, most breeders of chinchillas, the only fur-breeding animal in Croatia, stopped with fur production, but a minority continued, with the main goal of having the ban abolished.

''Ethical awareness of our citizens managed to overcome the petty profiteering interests and placed Croatia on the map of civilized countries that respect public opinion and adopt high ethical and environmental standards in the treatment of animals'', Animal Friends Croatia said in its statement.

Apart from a cake for the Ministry of Agriculture as a sign of gratitude, the Animal Friends Croatia association will also send a letter of thanks to the Croatian President Kolinda Grabar Kitarovic and the Prime Minister Andrej Plenkovic.

It's not April fools prank – new 5-stars hotel will be opened in Dubrovnik on April 1st this year! Royal Blue Hotel will be, how they say, ''new oasis of luxury in Dubrovnik''. 

Royal Blue Hotel is located in Lapad and has 81 deluxe rooms.
- Spectacular sea view, lavish amenities and stylish furniture will take your breath away just at the first step. You will surely fancy spending time in attractive cocktail and lounge bars or by one of the two shimmering outdoor pools – it's written on the hotel's official page.

Royal Blue Hotel also features an A la carte restaurant and wellness zone, while beach lovers will surely enjoy the amazing Blue Flag beach.

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                                                                                                                    Photos by

In terms of ski tourism, Croatia is way behind traditional European ski countries such as France, Austria, Switzerland, Germany and Italy. However, even though a number of ski resorts in the country are quite small, it is not negligible. Bjelolasica, Sljeme, Platak, Begovo Razdolje, Celimbasa and Trsce offer very good ski pistes as well as some Alp-like houses, villas and cottages in their vicinity for spending magical winter holidays.

For those who would like to bypass the famous French or Austrian ski resorts this year and discover some hidden winter gems, or for those who just have smaller ski budgets, here is the list of houses, villas and cottages that are located near Croatian ski resorts in the Gorski ktar region and which seem quite charming and relaxing.

House on the Bukov vrh (718 Kunas per night/ 8 persons)

Sumska villa, Mrkopalj (1500 Kunas per night/ 8 persons)

House on Platak, near Rijeka (1019 Kunas per night/ 6 persons)

Chalet Pinus Sylvestris, Ravna Gora (1887 Kunas per night/ 9 persons)

House Margerita, Mrkopalj (603 Kunas per night/ 5 persons)

Gospic near Baske Ostarije ski resort (746 Kunas per night/ 9 persons)

Villa Razdolje, Begovo Razdolje (2712 Kunas per night/ 8 persons)

House Ana, Crni Lug (696 Kunas/ 5 persons)

Velika Lesnica, Delnice (904 Kunas per night/ 6 persons)

Flybe will operate new flights to Dubrovnik for this summer season. The British carrier has announced that from the 16th of May this year they will introduce flights, on a twice weekly basis, from London Southend Airport to Dubrovnik.

These new flights are already available for sale on the company’s website and will operate until the 30th of September. These will be the first ever flights to Dubrovnik from Southend Airport.

The airline has also introduced new flights to Zadar from Southend Airport, also on a twice weekly basis, for this summer season.

The Snow Queen Trophy 2017 World cup alpine ski races are to begin with women’s slalom ski race on Sljeme near Zagreb on the 3rd of January.

On occasion of the 50th anniversary of the first FIS World Cup ski race, in the evening of the 4th of January a slalom ski race of the world skiing legends will be organized in the Bakaceva Street in the very heart of Zagreb. This is the first time in the history that a ski race will be held in the centre of a metropolis. That is why the world media expressed their interest in broadcast live this event such as ORF from Austria, SRF from Switzerland, SVT from Sweden, Eurosport and even BBC and J SPORTS from Japan.

The ski track in the Bakaceva Street is 165 metres long, whilst 900 cubic metres of snow is provided for its construction and thickness of 50 centimetres.

Interestingly, wooden sticks will be placed at the starting point of the ski track just as it was practice 50 years ago, whilst modern slalom gates will be placed at the finishing line in order to show how the ski technology has changed throughout the history.

Many World Cup winners will participate in an exhibition ski race such as Janica and Ivica Kostelic, Pernilla Wiberg, Marc Girardelli, Alberto Tomba, Petra Kronberger, Tina Maze, Michaela Dorfmeister, Andreas Wenzel etc. During the race, each of them will use equipment or props from the time of their successful skiing careers such as skis, sticks, helmets, gloves etc.

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According to the data from the registry offices of our largest cities - Zagreb, Osijek, Rijeka and Split, Croats are still quite faithful in giving popular names to their children, so the names that were popular in 2015 continued to be on top of the list in 2016 – writes

In general the trend of giving short names for girls and biblical names for boys is still omnipresent in all regions. Here is the list of most popular baby names in Croatia last year.

1. Mia
2. Lucija
3. Petra
4. Ema
5. Ana
6. Ena
7. Lana
8. Dora
9. Marta
10. Sara

1. Luka
2. Marko
3. Jakov
4. Ivan
5. Petar
6. Matej
7. Gabrijel
8. Filip
9. Fran
10. David

Get your scarves and hats ready – an arctic front is just about to hit Dubrovnik. The mild winter that kept the city warm and dry over the festive period is about to come to an abrupt end. Highs today will reach 11 degrees in Dubrovnik as cold weather from Siberia will blow down over the whole region.

Weather forecasters have predicted that by the end of the week temperatures in Dubrovnik will drop below zero. Friday and Saturday are expected to be the coldest of the week with temperatures dropping down to minus one and two.

The Voice of Dubrovnik


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