Tuesday, 07 December 2021
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

When the tourists all fly home after the summer season the beaches return to nature. This seemingly peaceful fox was enjoying an evening chill out of one of the beaches of Župa Dubrovačka, a beach that during the warmer months would be covered with colourful towels.

A reader of The Dubrovnik Times sent us these photos and commented that the fox didn’t seem nervous at all, in fact quite the opposite as it “posed for photos.”

Keep your photos coming!

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There were 49 cruises by foreign cruise ships in the Adriatic in September this year, which is almost 10 times more than in September last year, and was the largest number of such cruises in one month since the beginning of the pandemic, according to the Central Bureau of Statistics (CBS).

The number of days spent by these ships is significantly higher, 135 compared to September last year when they spent 41 days in the Croatian part of the Adriatic, and the number of passengers on these ships was significantly higher, 51.6 thousand, while in September 2020 it was 155.

Compared to August, there were 13 more cruise ships in September. However, this is still far from the level of that traffic from 2019 - in September of that year, 101 cruises were made on the Adriatic with more than 152.5 thousand passengers.

The highest number of cruises in the first nine months of this year was in the Dubrovnik-Neretva County, 69.4 percent of the total, and in the Split-Dalmatia County, 24.6 percent.

 

Dubrovnik’s most iconic attraction, the city walls, are traditionally the most popular tourist destination. And this year, from the beginning of the year until the end of October, a total of 389,000 people have walked the walls. Compared with the same period from the record breaking year of 2019 this figure represents only 32 percent, when 1.2 million people visited the walls.

Dubrovnik's city walls were visited by 48,000 visitors in October, which is only 36 percent compared to 2019, when 135,000 people walked around the walls.

In the first 10 months of this year, the walls of Ston recorded a better result than the walls of Dubrovnik. Namely, in 2021 they were visited by 38,670 visitors, and in 2019 that number was 64,020, which means that the Ston walls achieved 60 percent of the traffic from 2019.

Sokol grad in Konavle hosted 6,800 visitors from January to the end of October, which is 77 percent compared to 2019, when there were 8,640 of them.

And the Rector's Palace in Slano, which opened to the public in 2017, received 1,144 visitors in the first 10 months of this year, and compared to 2019, when it was visited by 1,063, it recorded an increase of 8 percent.

 

At first glance you could be forgiven for thinking that it's a theme that doesn't really have much to do with Croatia. More bluntly you may say “finally, a problem that doesn’t involve us and a global situation where we are one of the leaders.” And you’d be right, but only to a certain extent. In fact, this is one of the very few issues where Croatia is truly a global leader, right up there with Sweden!

So which important issues puts us hip to hip with the most developed country in the world? Financial, no! Legal, big no! Political, no comment! Education, not even close! Environmental, well yes pretty close.

Unless you live in a cave you are aware of the COP26 summit in Glasgow and the theme of climate change. I watched the opening speeches, and whilst all were relatively interesting they were mostly politicians, and nobody really wants to listen to a politician do they.

But one really, really caught my ear and even brought a tear to my eye. So powerful, so passionate, so direct and such a positive and yet frightening message. Yes, Sir David Attenborough, a man was has dedicated his whole life to the natural world and its protection, was the absolute star of the speeches.

This was probably to be expected as the world leaders are thinking firstly about their own interests and not the big picture. It’s hard to see the wood for the trees. But Sir David is only thinking about the planet as a whole. It must have been frustrating for him to sit in that room with all those Presidents and Prime Ministers and not want to send them all to hell. He is 95 years old and seemed to have more fight in him than the rest of the hall put together.

“We need to rewrite our story to turn this tragedy into a triumph,” said the veteran naturalist. And added “We are after all the greatest problem solvers to have ever existed on earth. We now understand this problem.” It was powerful stuff and the room listened. It remains to be seen if they will act.

Sir David concluded on a positive note, “a new industrial revolution, powered by millions of sustainable innovations” it exactly what the world needs.

Croatia was represented by the Prime Minister and he was a very small fish in a very large pond. And he was probably relived that this was one problem where we aren’t at the bottom of the pile. He correctly mentioned that “Croatia stands alongside the most responsible EU members, where we are 4th in terms of the lowest greenhouse gas emissions per capita, at 70 percent of the European average.”

And whilst praise is important, so is the fact that this is a global problem that needs a global solution. We can’t just say, we’re doing well so the rest of you need to sort this one out without us.

It’s great that we have these numbers, that 100 percent of the electricity in the Dubrovnik-Neretva County comes from renewable sources, that we have the luck that Mate Rimac was born inside our borders and is helping to change the future of transport, those are all great, but it doesn’t mean that we are “done” and can sit on our hands. This is real!

Every day, every one of us makes decisions that in a small way affect the future of our planet. Every day! Think about that.

“We are already in trouble. The stability we all depend on is breaking,” to quote Sir David again. And the power of the people, the world’s people, is so much stronger than any political power. It always has been and always will be. If we all decide to make one difference and continue that every day we can, in some small way, help.

That last word must be left to Sir David, “We must use this opportunity to create a more equal world, and our motivation should not be fear, but hope.”

Read more Englishman in Dubrovnik…well, if you really want to

   

 

The largest cruise ship ever to visit Dubrovnik sailed into the port of Gruž this morning. The mega cruise ship Norwegian Epic, a cruise ship in the fleet of the Norwegian Cruise Line, with a gross tonnage of 155,873 tons.

Norwegian Epic is 329 meters long and 41 meters wide. It was built in 2010 and renovated last year. It can accommodate 4,100 guests, and has 1,724 crew members on board.

This impressive cruise ship set sail from Barcelona on the 31st of October and docked at French and Italian destinations before arriving in Dubrovnik.

And whilst the Port of Dubrovnik is winding down for this year it would appear, at least that’s the plan, that 2022 will be a busy year. Speaking to RTL the director of the Port of Dubrovnik, Blaž Pezo, commented that "Next year, 370 cruise ships should arrive in our port and with them we should receive about 570 thousand passengers.”

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Photo - Instagram

 

Dubrovnik is a photographer’s dream, let’s face it you can throw a camera in the air and capture a stunning photo. And every day Instagram is filled to overflowing point with some absolutely blasting images of the pearl of the Adriatic.

We have selected this week our top five “Here comes the rain again” photos from Instagram. Check out our top five inspiring Dubrovnik Instagram photos from last week and keep sending us your own photos and videos of the region. We just love your feedback!

And don't forget to follow our Instagram page

 

In the last 24 hours, 7,094 new cases of Covid-19 virus infection were recorded, and the number of active cases in Croatia today is a total of 31,689. This is the first time since the pandemic began that Croatia has seen more than 7,000 new cases in one day.

And over just the past two days around 14,000 new cases have been detected.

There are 1,786 people in hospital, of which 234 are on ventilators.

Unfortunately, a further 50 people died in Croatia in the past 24 hours.

The City of Zagreb has organized eight new vaccination points, which will start operating on Tuesday, November 9, as more and more people show an interest to get vaccinated.

Only just over 57 percent of the adult population in Croatia have been vaccinated, which is one of the lowest percentages in the European Union.

There are currently 30,256 people in self-isolation.

 

The Dubrovnik-Neretva County has seen another 24 hours of high levels of new Covid-19 cases. 210 new cases of coronavirus infection have been recorded in the last 24 hours. And in the past three days almost 700 new cases have been detected, with the last four days seeing by far the highest number of new cases since the pandemic began.

These new cases are 100 males and 110 females; 98 from Dubrovnik, 37 from Metković, 18 from Konavle, 17 from Župa dubrovačka, 12 from Ploče, seven from Vela Luka, six from Opuzen, four from Korčula, three from Lastovo, two each from Dubrovačko Primorje, and Smokvica and one each from Janjina, Orebic, Slivno and Ston.

On a positive note 85 people made a full recovery: 45 from Dubrovnik, 11 from Ploče, seven from Metković, five from Konavle, three each from Opuzen, Vela Luka and Župa dubrovačka, two each from Korčula, Orebić and Smokvica and one each from Blato and Lumbarda.

In the last 24 hours, 696 samples were processed, and a total of 157,137 samples have been analysed since the beginning of the pandemic.

Dubrovnik General Hospital announces special working conditions 

56 people tested positive for coronavirus were hospitalized in the Dubrovnik General Hospital, six patients required intensive care, and five of them were on ventilators. And the severe rise in new cases in the county has meant that the hospital has announced special working conditions from this Monday.

The Dubrovnik General Hospital announced that due to the worsening epidemiological situation, the unessential operation program will be cancelled as of Monday, November 8, with the exception of oncology and emergency surgeries.

The Dubrovnik hospital emphasized that all hospital polyclinics that perform contracted regular examinations and controls of patients in all activities will continue with their regular work.

Unfortunately, in the last 24 hours, two men from Dubrovnik died (born in 1954 and 1932).

There are 2,041 people in self-isolation, and in the last 24 hours no violation of the self-isolation measure was recorded.

A mass vaccination will be held in Dubrovnik next week. 

 

The Voice of Dubrovnik

THE VOICE OF DUBROVNIK


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