Wednesday, 17 July 2019
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.


Whereas the vast majority of Croatia is suffering from demographic issues Dubrovnik seems to be immune from such problems. Not only did Dubrovnik have the highest increase in the population over recent years according to a recent survey but also the citizens of tomorrow, the children, maintaining a healthy status of growth.

A grand total of 1,171 pupils will start school for the first time this year. According to provisional data given by the State Administration Office in the Dubrovnik-Neretva County in the first class of elementary schools in our area, 1,171 pupils have enrolled for the 2019/20 school year. This is slightly higher than the number of first class pupils for the past school year.

After two years of a slow decline in the number of first class pupils this year the trend has been broken and, if the indicators are to be believed, is the start of an upward curve over the future school years.

According to information from the State Administration Office, the final data on the results of enrolment in the first grades of primary schools in our county will be known and submitted to the Ministry of Science and Education by the 2nd of September.

It’s a special birthday year for the Dubrovnik Summer Festival and they are pulling out all the stops to make sure it’s an anniversary to remember. After the spectacular Tom Jones concert in front of the Dubrovnik Cathedral a couple of days ago opened the celebrations in style comes another innovative birthday surprise.

Right by the busy Pile entrance to the historic Old City of Dubrovnik a light display featuring #70 has been installed and it is certainly capturing the interest of passers-by. Of course in this era of social media the idea behind it is that tourists will take a selfie with the hash tag sign and then post it online, and then maybe search online why #70 is important.


Rambo and Rocky have arrived in Croatia! Sylvester Stallone (72) has arrived in Split on a family vacation with his wife Jennifer Flavin (50) and three daughters, Sistine Rose, Sophia Rose and Scarlet Rose.

The whole family landed at Split Airport on a flight from Venice before being whisked away to board the luxurious yacht “Meira.” This 55-metre long yacht is certainly the height of elegance and features on-board sauna, Jacuzzi, home cinema and massage rooms. It can accommodate up to 12 people in six state-of-the-art cabins and is sure to be a great base for an Adriatic cruise for this Hollywood family.

And Stallone isn’t holding back as this yacht costs around 133,000 Euros a week. Making it not only one of the most luxurious Croatian owned private charter yachts but also one of the most expensive.

Where and indeed for how long Stallone and his family will cruise the Croatian coastline and islands is unknown, but after Jon Bon Jovi last week, it is clear that Croatia is a still hit in celebrity circles.

Out of the 118 beaches in the Dubrovnik – Neretva County 111 have been rated as having sea water of excellent quality. Throughout the summer season the quality of the sea water of the Adriatic throughout the whole of the county is regularly tested and the results from the latest survey have been released.

The Public Health Institute of the Dubrovnik-Neretva County performed the third regular sea survey on the 118 beaches from the period from the 17th to the 26th of June 2019. The sea on 117 beaches corresponded to the requirements of the Bathing Water Quality Regulation, with only the beach in Srebreno failing to pass this rigorous tests. However, on the 27th and 28th of June further samples of the sea water at Srebreno were taken and the sea water passed.

Out of the other 117 beaches, the sea at 111 beaches was rated as a sea of outstanding quality. Whilst the sea water on the beaches of Libertas Rixos Hotel in Dubrovnik, VK Cavtat in Konavle, Mlini in Župa Dubrovačka and Uvala Luka in Trpanj was rated as sea of good quality, while the sea on the beaches Šulić and Danče in Dubrovnik was rated with a satisfactory rating.
The sea temperature in Dubrovnik is currently around 25 degrees.

Of all the holidays we've been celebrating during the past few days, we couldn't tell which one is yours, but sure know which (upcoming) is our favorite ;-)

On July 7th Dubrovnik Cinemas and Poeticacao cordially invite you for a celebration of the sweetest holiday one can think of - INTERNATIONAL CHOCOLATE DAY - we're hosting a gastro-cinematic party under the pine-trees of Slavica, the most magical open-air cinema, overlooking mind-blowing sunset and under one million stars.

The program starts with a summer edition of LITTLE SCHOOL OF CHOCOLATE by Miss Poeticacao and Mr Carob, children's workshop. Due to limited number of participants, we suggest you make a reservation by calling 020417107 or emailing This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..">This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Celebrating in this wow cinema is not just a lucky coincidence, so as soon as it gets dark, all the fans of chocolate and film are invited to the Croatian premiere of SEMISWEET: LIFE IN CHOCOLATE, documentary directed by Michael Allcock in 2012. While telling 4 essentially diverse chocolate stories, Semisweet tries to synthesize what today's magical yet bitter-sweet and fragile world of chocolate is based on.

We're expecting the interactive audience as well as some interesting guests, associated with chocolate - one way or another - to take part in the CHOCOLATE CHAT after the screening.

And, last but not the least, may all the senses enjoy the chocolate charm - cacao coming straight from the Amazonian jungle to the jungle of Slavica Cinema in the form of organic 50% locally sourced chocolate and other chocolate creations by the local magicians, in an irresistible pairing with biodynamic wine.


*19h* LITTLE SCHOOL OF CHOCOLATE by Miss Poeticacao and Mr Carob, children's workshop - summer edition
*21h* SEMISWEET-LIFE IN CHOCOLATE - documentary screening (58')
*22h* CHOCOLATE CHAT - on the movie etc. with guests and audience
***** WINE & CHOCOLATE treats

Six Korean police officers, including two policewomen, arrived on Saturday in Zagreb. During July and August, they will patrol the streets of Zagreb, Split and Dubrovnik along with their Croatian counterparts. They came to Croatia as part of the "Safe Tourism Season 2019" a project to help tourists who come to Croatia from the Republic of Korea and assist Croatian officers with communication issues with their fellow citizens. Like all of the other foreign police forces who have been involved in this project since 2006, the Korean police officers will be in their recognizable uniforms without weapons and will not have police powers.

The Zagreb Police Chief, Marko Rašić, said that 804 foreign police officers from 19 countries and 21 police organizations have so far taken part in the "Safe Tourism Season" project so far. This year, police officers from the Republic of Korea will participate for the first time in the project.

“Over the past two years, more than 400,000 tourists from Korea have visited Croatia, and we expect this number to rise as direct fights between Seoul and Zagreb were launched last year,” commented the Korean Vice-Consul Junghyun. He added that he is convinced that joint Croatian-Korean patrols will contribute to increasing cooperation and the feeling of security of Korean citizens in Croatia.


Millions of people around the globe are going “plastic free” this July in order to both raise awareness of this massive problem as well as fight plastic pollution. And in this month of the combat against plastic Greenpeace Croatia found a rather novel, and extremely effective, way to highlight the terrible problem of plastic pollution of our seas and oceans.

As part of the fight against single use plastics Greenpeace today unveiled a six-metre high sculpture of whales emerging from a sea of plastic waste in the Istrian town of Umag. They also pushed for an international day without plastic bags and have started a petition for the total ban on plastic bags, which so far has been signed by more than 50,000 citizens in just a few months.

croatia greenpeace fight plastic

Single-use plastics, or disposable plastics, are used only once before they are thrown away or recycled. These items are things like plastic bags, straws, coffee stirrers, soda and water bottles and most food packaging. And these very items are clogging the earth’s oceans and seas.

"July was declared as the month of the fight against plastic, so we wanted to show off its damaging impact on the sea world in a picturesque manner,” commented Petra Andric, the head of Greenpeace Croatia anti-plastic campaign. She added that “Plastic pollution on the beaches are only a small part of the pollution, most of the plastic that falls into the sea sinks to the bottom and creates terrible consequences for life in the sea, animals can be stuck in it, suffocate or eat it.”

more adriatic less plastic


The news about marine animals affected by plastic is getting more and more common, and the findings of recent research are also a concern. For example, recently 102 turtles were examined in the Mediterranean, the Pacific, and the Atlantic and everyone one of them had some form of micro-plastic inside them.

Tom Jones absolutely rocked the Old City of Dubrovnik last night in a mega concert. From gospel to rock, Chuck Berry to Little Richard and of course the vast majority of his own timeless classics, it has been a long time since Dubrovnik has seen a concert of this scale.

"This town is beautiful, this is the first time I have been here and I am in shock. How did they build it?” boomed Jones from the stage and was greeted with roars of approval. His energy, voice and stage presence saw the Welsh legend roll back the years.

The concert was organised to celebrate the 70th anniversary of the Dubrovnik Summer Festival and if this was the opening page the rest of the festival has a tough act to follow. As Sex Bomb boomed out across the stone facades Dubrovnik enjoyed a night to remember. Although the concert was supposed to be limited to around a 1,000 guests the welsh legend could be heard, and indeed seen, by at least another 1,000 people.

You might think “it’s not unusual” to see such an amazing concert in Dubrovnik, you’d be wrong.


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