Saturday, 20 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.

Email: mark.thomas@dubrovnik-times.com

From the midweek to the weekend, Dubrovnik hosted 21,000 guests, which represents a similar number to this time last year.

According to tourist check-ins and check-outs through the eVisitor system, the most numerous tourists were from the UK and the USA, followed by tourists from Australia and France.

Korčula is a captivating gem on Croatia's Dalmatian Coast. Steeped in history, enriched with culture, and brimming with natural beauty, this enchanting city offers a delightful blend of old-world charm and modern allure. Here are three top things to see and do in Korčula that will make your visit unforgettable.

St. Mark's Cathedral – The City's Landmark

Visit the St. Mark's Cathedral, a striking example of Dalmatian architecture, with its beautiful facade and a treasury filled with religious artefacts. From the top of the bell tower, which overlooks the bustling main square, visitors are treated to breath-taking views over Korčula, shaped like a fishbone. Inside the cathedral, beneath the stone canopy, lies a stunning altarpiece created by the Venetian Renaissance artist Jacopo Tintoretto in 1550. Adjacent to the cathedral, the Bishop's Treasury houses a remarkable collection of art and archaeological discoveries. Here, visitors can delve into a unique array of exhibits, including intricate religious artifacts, ancient relics, and notable artworks. The treasury provides a glimpse into Korčula's rich cultural heritage, showcasing items that span centuries and reflect the island's historical significance. Exploring St. Mark's Cathedral and the Bishop's Treasury offers not only a visual feast of art and architecture but also a deeper understanding of Korčula's past and its enduring cultural legacy.

Exploring Korčula Top Three Must See Attractions on Croatias Dalmatian Coast 1

Moreska – Celebrating Heritage

The traditional dance from Korčula is known as the "Moreska," a centuries-old sword dance that holds deep cultural significance on the island. Centuries ago, the Moreška was performed across the Mediterranean coast. Today, it is exclusively preserved in the town of Korčula, where it has been celebrated for over four hundred years. The accompanying text of the dance originates from Korčula, underscoring its deep-rooted connection to the island's cultural heritage. This year, the Moreska program runs from June 1st through the end of September. It attracts locals and visitors alike, providing an opportunity to witness and participate in this vibrant expression of Korčula's history and artistic tradition.

Exploring Korčula Top Three Must See Attractions on Croatias Dalmatian Coast 2

Gabrielis Palace: Discover Korčula's Cultural Heritage

Located in the heart of Korčula's Old Town, Gabrielis Palace stands as a remarkable example of residential architecture from the 15th and 16th centuries. It houses the town museum, offering visitors a captivating journey through Korčula's cultural and commercial history. The museum's exhibits span from prehistoric times to the present day, providing insights into the traditional crafts that shaped Korčula's identity, such as stonemasonry and shipbuilding. Among the museum's most prized possessions are the bronze pendant crafted by Tiziano Aspetti and an 1819 piano once played by Edith Streicher, a close friend of Beethoven. These artefacts offer glimpses into both local and international influences on Korčula's cultural landscape.

FIND MORE INFO ON KORČULA HERE

Dubrovnik Airport is preparing for an exceptionally busy weekend, with 150 planes scheduled to land, bringing in tourists from destinations all over Europe and beyond, including major cities such as Dubai and New York.

From Helsinki to Vienna, and London to Lyon, flights will be arriving from a wide range of cities, reflecting Dubrovnik's growing popularity as a prime summer destination. With each plane averaging a capacity of 160 passengers, the airport could see as many as 24,000 tourists arriving in the city this weekend.

This surge in arrivals comes on the heels of the busiest June on record for Dubrovnik Airport. July is on track to follow this trend, with an even higher influx of tourists expected. The airport will handle almost as many flights this weekend than it did throughout the entire month of February, underscoring the peak travel season's intensity.

I must admit, I'm a bit biased about this month's restaurant. Dubravka 1836 Restaurant & Café is a personal favourite and my top recommendation for visitors to Dubrovnik. Its unbeatable location offers stunning views of the Old City, Lovrijenac Fortress, and the Adriatic Sea. Right at the main entrance to Dubrovnik, it's perfect for a meal before or after sightseeing.

I have to be honest, I am a little biased when it comes to this month's restaurant. It is not only restaurant that I regularly go to with friends and family, but also one that I recommend to guests to Dubrovnik, and for good reason. Dubravka 1836 Restaurant & Café isn't only one of my favourite eateries in the city but it also has one of the best locations.

Views over the city walls 

448994886 1003763451752769 5084456812383503973 n

So let's first cover the location. I am struggling to think of one with a better one. Firstly, the views over the walled Old City and the stunning Lovrijenac Fortress, and indeed the glinting Adriatic Sea, are captivating. It is literally right on the doorstep of the main entrance into the pearl of the Adriatic. Meaning you can plan a breakfast (yes, they do have a large breakfast menu), lunch or dinner around a visit to the attractions. You can always tell a good place to eat by the number of customers filling the seats, and let me tell you Dubravka is a hit, not just with guests but also with locals. Now that's a good sign. They have a very generous outside terrace, as well as a covered area, and almost all the tables have a glorious view.

dubravka 1836 19

So now onto the food, as the restaurant states "The rich Mediterranean cuisine, prepared from original foodstuffs from the Dubrovnik area, directed by top culinary masters, will contribute to the full experience of the beauty of Dubrovnik." Indeed, that's a good start. "I would recommend the Dalmatian Smoked Ham with Olives as a starter," said the super friendly waitress. That sounded like a good place to start, and I have to say it was extremely tasty. "And to follow that, and to keep in the meat mood, why not try the Rib-Steak Dalmatian Style, for a main course and that is served with Swiss Chard in olive oil," she smiled.

Superb food 

 dubravka 1836 53

They were telling the truth when they said that they stick to local ingredients and dishes. It is almost hard to concentrate on your food when the views distract you so much. The meal was superb, I can't really find anything to complain about, far from it. The prices are more than reasonable, the service couldn't have been better, the location is just perfect and the menu is varied but pays homage to local and homemade meals. It is a big thumbs up, and I couldn't recommend Dubravka 1836 Restaurant & Café. I will probably be back there soon; can you get enough of a good thing?

FIND MORE INFO HEREhttps://www.nautikarestaurants.com/dubravka-restaurant-cafe/

The Croatian economy will grow by 3.3 percent in 2024, while growth will slow to 2.8 percent in 2025, according to forecasts by the chief economists of Croatia's four largest banks in the latest "HUB Outlook" published on Friday.

As stated in the HUB release, bank economists and economists at the European Commission underestimated growth for 2023 at the end of last year, and the same applies to earlier estimates for this year, which predicted 2.5 percent growth for the Croatian economy in 2023.

"Although the outcome for this year is still unknown – we only know that real GDP grew at a rate of 3.9 percent in the first quarter – we are quite confident that this year's economic growth will exceed earlier expectations. Accordingly, the latest forecasts have been revised upward. In its spring forecasts, the European Commission raised the expected growth rate for Croatia to 3.3 percent, and the average forecast of the chief economists of Croatian banks from these HUB Outlooks matches the stance of the European Commission economists," HUB highlighted.

According to Croatian economists, economic growth in 2024 will primarily be driven by personal consumption, which is expected to grow by an average of 4.5 percent, with the least optimistic economist forecasting a growth of 3.9 percent and the most optimistic at 5.1 percent. This is followed by investments, with an expected growth rate of 3.8 percent, while exports are expected to grow by 2.7 percent.

"With inflation settling around 3.2 percent and double-digit growth in average nominal wages, a strong contribution from personal consumption to growth is inevitable. However, part of the wage growth is linked to increased government spending and deficit," HUB stated, with economists on average expecting the general government deficit to be around 2.5 percent of GDP.

As for the forecasts for 2025, HUB predicts growth of 2.8 percent, while the Commission forecasts 2.9 percent. "The slowdown in 2025 should not be significant," HUB noted.

Economists predict that the contribution of exports, expected to grow at a rate of 3.6 percent, will take precedence over personal consumption, which could slow to around three percent, while investments could have a similar contribution as this year.

They forecast a further decline in the unemployment rate, from 5.7 percent this year to 5.4 percent next year, while inflation is expected to slow further to around 2.6 percent. There is also a forecast of significantly slower wage growth than this year, at 5.6 percent, but also a significantly smaller budget deficit of 0.8 percent of GDP, which should bring the public debt ratio below the 60 percent threshold.

Asked about future decisions by the European Central Bank (ECB) on interest rates, economists agreed that two more reductions of 25 basis points each can be expected this year, which would bring the base interest rate to 3.25 percent by the end of the year.

The president of the HUB club of chief economists of Croatian banks is Ivana Jović from Privredna banka Zagreb (PBZ), her deputy is Hrvoje Dolenec from Zagrebačka banka (Zaba), and the club also includes Alen Kovač from Erste bank and Zrinka Živković-Matijević from Raiffeisen bank. The latest survey among them was conducted in June this year, and the results were processed by Arhivanalitika.

Organized by the Croatian National Tourist Board's office in the United Kingdom, PR agency Aviareps, the main office of the Croatian National Tourist Board in Zagreb, and the Dubrovnik Tourist Board, renowned British journalist Tristan Rutherford from The Times is visiting Dubrovnik. The authentic eno-gastronomic and cultural offerings of Dubrovnik, which stand out in quality among the Mediterranean's top competitors, will be showcased in both the print and online editions of The Times, reaching 12 million readers.

Miro Drašković, Director of the Dubrovnik Tourist Board, and Tristan Rutherford discussed the importance of the British market, traditionally the most significant source market for Dubrovnik. Dubrovnik, consistently one of the most popular destinations for Britons and an established tourist brand in the UK market, is an ideal combination of cultural and historical heritage, natural beauty, and eno-gastronomic offerings.

British Journalist Tristan Rutherford Highlights Dubrovniks Unique Appeal in The Times 1800 x 3000 px

Tristan Rutherford is visiting Dubrovnik to promote the unique potentials and heritage of Dubrovnik, a traditional favorite among British visitors. Tristan Rutherford is a multi-award-winning author whose media articles regularly appear in the most widely read British media, including The Times, The Telegraph, and The Wall Street Journal. He highlights Croatia's natural, historical, and cultural heritage, as well as its uniqueness as a film destination. Over the years, his informative articles have contributed to the visibility of Croatia in British media.

The British market is the most important source market for Dubrovnik, with British tourists traditionally topping the list of the most numerous visitors to Dubrovnik. From the beginning of the year to early July, 78,095 British tourists have visited Dubrovnik, which is 18 percent more than in the same period last year. British tourists achieved 325,635 overnight stays in the same period, 17 percent more than last year. In June, Dubrovnik hosted 30,729 British guests, 12 percent more than the same month last year, with 140,572 overnight stays, 12 percent more than last June.

In July 2024, approximately 375 flights from Dubrovnik Airport (Ruđer Bošković) are scheduled to the UK market. Dubrovnik is directly connected by flights to 11 destinations in the UK: London (Gatwick, Heathrow, Stansted), Manchester, Newcastle, Leeds, Glasgow, East Midlands, Edinburgh, Cardiff, Bristol, Birmingham, and Belfast, served by the following carriers: easyJet, Jet2.com, TUI Airways, British Airways, BA Euroflyer, and Ryanair. On a weekly basis, Dubrovnik Airport handles around 82 flights to the UK, with about 12 flights daily. The highest number of weekly flights is to London, with more than 45 weekly flights.

According to the data from the Croatian National Tourist Board for nautical tourism in the area of the city of Dubrovnik, nearly eight and a half thousand arrivals and about fifty thousand overnight stays were registered in June, which is three percent less than in June last year.

The most numerous nautical tourists in the city in June were from the USA, the United Kingdom, Australia, Croatia, France, and Germany.

In the first half of the year, around fourteen thousand nautical arrivals and nearly eighty-five and a half thousand overnight stays were registered, which is one percent less than in the same period last year.

 

Yesterday, at the Ranjina Palace, a contract signing ceremony was held with the contractor for the renovation project of the Emergency Medicine Institute building in Dubrovnik.

In the presence of County Prefect Nikola Dobroslavić, the contract was signed by the Director of the Institute, Luka Lulić, and the representative of the company Alfaplan, Mato Butjer.

The renovation and refurbishment project of the mentioned building includes waterproofing works, installation of reinforced concrete slabs, facade restoration, and painting works.

The value of this investment amounts to 250 thousand euros, funded by decentralized funds and the budget of Dubrovnik-Neretva County.

The signing ceremony was also attended by the Head of the Department of Health, Family, and Veterans Affairs, Đurđica Popović, and the Deputy Head of the Department for the County Prefect and County Assembly, Maro Hađija.

The Voice of Dubrovnik

THE VOICE OF DUBROVNIK


Find us on Facebook