By far the largest increase in tourists in Croatia in 2017 were travellers from China. Statistics released by the Ministry of Tourism show that on an annual level there was a huge 53 percent increase in the number of tourists from China arriving in Croatia last year, far more than any other nationality.
A grand total of 191,428 Chinese tourists enjoyed the beauties of Croatia last year, which is the first time ever that Chines guests have made the top twenty list of nationality markets. This is a trend that has been continuing for a few years and to the delight of many travel operators the majority of these travellers arrive outside of the main tourist season.
Mario Rendulić, The President of the Chinese Southeast Business Association (CSEBA), Mario Rendulic, commented that “We never had more Chinese tourists than this year and the number is just going to increase in coming years. CSEBA together with Croatian Tourism Ministry and the National Tourist Board, is trying to speed up the removal of administrative barriers and obtain permits which form the basis for the establishment of direct airline connections. The direct links are necessary if Croatian tourist destinations want to attract more Chinese tourists.”
It would appear from the Croatian Tourist Board data that Chinese guests avoid the warmer, and more crowded, summer months. The majority arrive either at the end of spring or in early autumn, thus helping to prolong the Croatian tourist season. And if indicators are to be trusted as many as 300,000 Chinese tourists could land in Croatia this year.