Tuesday, 21 May 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

The Croatian Ministry of Tourism has announced that it will allocate almost 25 million Kunas of grants for over 600 projects aimed at boosting the competitiveness of the tourism economy.

The Ministry has published the results of the program for grants allocation in 2017 under the title ''Competitiveness of the Tourism Economy'' for supporting 606 projects with 24.9 million Kunas.

The funds are intended to increase the quality and the additional offer of hospitality facilities, the development of new products in a destination, sustainable development, internationalization of business, usage of new technologies etc. Beneficiaries are small business entities (non-public sector companies, crafts and cooperatives), family farms that provide hospitality and/or tourist services, and physical persons-private renters.

The Croatian Minister of Tourism Gari Cappelli has emphasized that this year, apart from projects on the continent; special attention is paid to the development of tourism on Croatian islands as well as to sustainable development and the usage of new digital technologies for connecting agriculture with tourism, i.e. destinations with a local offer of domestic products.

The 19th annual Gumball 3000 Rally is coming to Dubrovnik. From the 1st to the 7th of July 150 high-end luxury supercars will blast from Riga in Latvia to the Greek island of Mykonos in the Aegean Sea and tomorrow the streets of Dubrovnik will echo to the sound of these monster cars.

The spectacular cavalcade of over 150 classic, wacky and futuristic hypercars set off from Riga on Sunday 2nd of July and embarked on an incredible journey through Vilnius, Warsaw, Budapest, Dubrovnik, Tirana and Athens before crossing the finish line in Mykonos on Friday July 7th.

Around 150 cars and two Harley Davidson motorbikes are taking part in this year’s rally and the founder of Gumball Maximillion Cooper will also be taking part as well as a host of celebrities. DJ AfroJack, Grammy winner Eve, Major League Baseball Hall of Famer Ken Griffey, megastar Cee Lo Green and Channel 4's SAS "Who Dares Wins' host Jason Fox will all be featuring in the race over 3,000 through eleven countries in only six days.

In partnership with Christie's Auctioneers (Kerring Group), Laureus Sport for Good, the Tony Hawk Foundation and the Sir Simon Milton Foundation, the Gumball 3000 Foundation raises money throughout the event to support multiple youth based project to improve education, infrastructure and recreation in low income communities around the world.

If you want to catch these cars in Dubrovnik they will be in the Port of Gruz from 6.00pm to 10.00pm tomorrow evening.

On marking the fourth anniversary of Croatia's full membership in the European Union, the Croatian Chamber of Commerce (HGK) and the EU Commission Representation in Croatia, are organizing a conference ‘’Towards the fifth year of Croatia’s membership in the European Union’’ in the Crystal Hall of the Westin Hotel in Zagreb on the 5th of July 2017.

''Since the 1st of July 2013, Croatia is being part of a unique European market. The fact that the value of exports to the EU in 2016 was twice as high as in 2013 and that this growth was significantly higher than the growth of total exports to all other countries clearly indicates that this is not just another formal status. In addition, we have to continue using the resources of the EU Structural and Investment Funds more intensively in order to further encourage economic growth'', explained Luka Burilovic, the president of the Croatian Chamber of Commerce (HGK).

Burilovic also added that the aim of the conference is to discuss the key obstacles through a joint dialogue in order to enable the country to take full advantage of all opportunities that the EU membership provides in the years to come.

The conference will be held under the high patronage of the Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic, with the participation of many distinguished guests from the Croatian Government and the EU Commission.

According to the E-visitor system, Dubrovnik has achieved record tourism results in the first six months of this year! From 1st of January to June 30th 2017, there were 441 044 tourists in Dubrovnik, which is 20 percent more than in the same period of 2016. There were 1,393,194 overnight stays, or 19 percent more than last year. In the first six months, the largest number of tourists came from United Kingdom, USA, Germany, France, Croatia, Spain, Austria, Sweden, Finland and South Korea.

In this period, there were 279 821 guests in hotel accommodation, which is an increase of 8 percent compared to the same period last year, and 861 899 overnight stays or 9 percent than last year. In the hotel accommodation the most numerous guests were from United Kingdom, USA, France, Germany, Croatia, Austria, Spain, Sweden, Finland and South Korea.

In the private accommodation there were 118 245 arrivals or 42 percent more than in the same period last year and 399 482 overnight stays, which is 35 percent more than in 2016.  The largest number of tourists in private accommodation were from United Kingdom, USA, Germany, France, Croatia, Canada, Australia, Sweden, Finland, and Spain.

This June was the best tourist June in Dubrovnik! Only in this, previous month of 2017 there were 165 390 arrivals, 21 percent more than in the same month last year and 560 465 overnight stays, which is 18 percent more than in 2016. Most numerous guests in June were tourists fromUnited Kingdom, followed by tourists from the United States, Germany, France, Sweden, Australia, Finland, Spain, Ireland and Croatia.

At the moment, there are 19,166 tourists in Dubrovnik, which is almost the same number of tourists on the same date last year, and most guests are from United Kingdom, USA, Germany, Norway, Sweden, Australia, France, Finland, Spain and Ireland.

The Dubrovnik – Neretva County is on the verge of a record season with a massive increase in the number of guests compared to last year. This positive trend has been ongoing for several years but over the past couple of years the numbers of tourists has increased significantly.

According to details from the Dubrovnik – Neretva County Tourist Board there have been almost 640,000 tourists in the county in the first half of 2017. And the number of overnight stays in the county for the first six months of the years was 2.3 million, or a huge 21 percent increase over the same period from last year.

In June this year, 266,012 tourist arrival were recorded, which is 20 percent more than in June 2016, and statistics show that there were 1.09 million overnights in that month, which is an 18 percent increase over last year.

The largest number of overnight stays were made by tourists from the United Kingdom, Croatia, Germany, the United States of America, France, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Poland. In the first six months of 2016 there were 97,000 British tourists in the Dubrovnik County which a healthy 35 percent increase over the same period from last year.

The summer weekends in Dubrovnik are traditionally a time of turnover, tourists come and go, planes land and take-off, the season is in full flow.

Today the centre of the ancient Old City there was a constant stream of fresh tourists arriving and along with that a parade of suitcases and bags.

Check out our suitcase Sunday special photo gallery

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The Croatian manufacture Malo & Slatko, known for its handmade chocolates, has been awarded by the prestigious international association The Academy of Chocolate.

The latest competition and tasting of chocolate was held in London in May 2017. Almost 190 of the world's best artisan chocolate and quality chocolate producers from 37 countries around the globe participated at this event.

The manufacture Malo & Slatko from Croatia received a bronze award for its TAMAN Milk 35 Coconut, Lemon and Lemongrass chocolate among the world's best chocolate makers and their chocolates.

''This award means a lot to us. To be among the world's best chocolate producers, those who inspired us to start this business, it is a great honour'', commented Stiv Kahlina, a chocolate producer and the author of the award-winning chocolate.

Since 2006, the Academy of Chocolate Association has awarded ''The Academy of Chocolate Awards'' for the best chocolates in the world. The Awards attract entries from producers all over the world and recognise some of the world's finest chocolates. They are judged by the Academy of Chocolate and by a panel of international journalists, chefs, pastry chefs and experts in chocolate and food. The judges pay particular attention to the appearance, depth of aroma, flavour, length and complexity of the chocolate.

It is carnival time in Cavtat! The first weekend in July in Cavtat is always a blaze of colours and sounds as the carnival comes to town. With costumes and music the carnival passed along the main promenade in Cavtat last night and the entertainment continued well on into the early morning hours.

Organised by the Tourist Board of Konavle, the Association “Mame” from Cavtat and the Carnival Association of Dominali the summer is a time for celebration in Cavtat. After a carnival parade passed through the centre of Cavtat the fun continued with a concert from the decks of the ship St. Ivan docked in the harbour.

For those of you who didn’t have the opportunity to chance the carnival last night don’t worry there will be a repeat performance tonight at 8.30pm.

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The Voice of Dubrovnik


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