Ivana Smilović – a senior journalist at The Dubrovnik Times. Born and raised in Dubrovnik, Ivana (or Smile as she is known to all) graduated Media Studies from the University of Dubrovnik. A book worm, coffee addict and want-to-be world traveller Ivana brings her unique local insight, connections and general optimistic and well smiley feel to the Times.
At the beginning of April, activities began on arranging, rehabilitating and equipping public beaches and bathing areas in the Dubrovnik area. So far, works have been completed on the following beaches: Buza, Porporela, Pile-Sulic, Dance, Boninovo, Kalamota (Donje celo and Bezdan) and Veliki zali, Gjivovici, as well as the beaches in Mokosica, Zaton, Belvedere and Solitudo.
On the beaches in Zaton (Bunica, Bat, Ankora, Orsan Gverovic, Soline, Ponta mala), Moksšica (Ponta Sjekavica, near the Gostiona, Vapor, near the ex Ambulance), Solitudo (Mandrac beach) and on Veliki zali, the approaches to the beaches were cleaned, on which filling the rocks and leveling the beach was done. Also, showers were set up, as well as stairs, cabins and locker rooms needed for the upcoming season.
On Buza, Boninovo, Porporela, Sulic, Dance, Kalamota (Donje celo and Bezdan), Belvedere and Gjivovici, landscaping works were also completed, which included repairing fences, steps and handrails, concreting damaged platforms, walls and steps, and repairing and installing showers.
The contractor Frendy d.o.o has the remaining works on equipping and arranging public baths in Elafiti, Vrbica, Stikovica, Titova Vila, Trsteno and Orasac, the completion of which is planned for the end of June, and the funds provided in the Budget for arranging and maintaining beaches before the summer season are 1,717,000 kuna.
Mayor Mato Frankovic participated in the first UNESCO webinar on world heritage called "Re-thinking Urban Heritage for Resilience and Recovery", in the context of the impact of the COVID-19 virus on cities and the resumption of their activities after the global pandemic.
In the difficult time of the global crisis, both health and financial, the City of Dubrovnik was completely left without the main economic branch, Mayor Frankovic emphasized in his address at the first panel.
- At this moment, we are slowly starting with the renewal of tourism, two days ago Dubrovnik Airport established international flights and this season we expect the realization of about 30 percent of last year's tourist traffic. It should be noted that Dubrovnik is a city that is extremely financially dependent on tourism, more than 80 percent of our economy is strongly associated with tourism, and the rest are various other areas that are also indirectly related to tourism - said Mayor Frankovic.
Despite the difficult financial situation, the city administration has not lost sight of the set goals and the need of the city for further development in the right direction, was one of today's messages from Mayor Frankovic.
-You know the history of Dubrovnik in 1991 when the city was bombed, and even then UNESCO observers in their records mentioned the reconstruction and future of Dubrovnik, which should think about how to introduce sustainability in its tourism. Despite the fact that we live from tourism and it is our main economic activity, we do not want to make the same mistake, so this difficult period is also a great opportunity for change and we will certainly use it – Mayor Frankovic said.
Speaking about the renewal of the activities of cities, Frankovic pointed out that the restoration and protection of heritage are dependent on each other, and especially referred to the challenges facing the Dubrovnik city administration.
-The cultural heritage of Dubrovnik is in excellent condition and we are continuously investing in its restoration. The richness of heritage will certainly be one of the comparative advantages of cities under UNESCO protection. I am deeply convinced that UNESCO cities will be rebuilt sooner than others. Heritage is always attractive, and cities will now be even more beautiful with less crowds. All these are challenges ahead of us, and I must point out that we are ready for the health crisis and have solved it well, and the financial crisis is just ahead of us, but I hope that we will face it just as successfully - concluded the Mayor.
In addition to the City of Dubrovnik, the first panel also presented the experiences of the cities of Tunisia, Jaipur, India and the Philippine city of Wigan. Experts Satya Tripathi from the UN Environment and Cherie Nursalim from the GITI Group also joined the panel with their perspective on the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on heritage and sustainable urban development.
Sales and Marketing Director of the largest Baltic regional airline Air Baltic for Lithuania Jevgenij Kozyrev reported that Air Baltic will open and maintain seasonal direct flights between Vilnius and Dubrovnik, starting on July 6th, 2020.
For years, there has been an extremely positive trend of increasing arrivals of Lithuanian tourists in Croatia and in record 2019 there were 47 thousand Lithuanian tourists (an increase of 10.5 percent compared to arrivals in 2018), with 186 thousand overnight stays (an increase of 7.2 percent compared to the number of overnight stays in 2018), although so far there have been no direct air passenger flights (except for a few charter flights).
According to the Croatian National Tourist Board, 516 Lithuanians visited Croatia in the first five months of this year (only 10.29 percent compared to the last year in the same period: 5,016), who realized 3,169 overnight stays (17.33 percent of the number of overnight stays in the same period 2019: 18,283).
On December 10 th 2019, Air Baltic in Vilnius officially presented to representatives of Lithuanian travel and travel agencies and the media new direct, seasonal flights from Vilnius to five new European destinations in 2020, including two destinations in Croatia: Rijeka and Dubrovnik (in cooperation with the Embassy), and the promotion of the announced flights was held at the largest Lithuanian and Baltic regional tourism fair Adventur 2020, on January 25, 2020 with the participation of the Embassy and the Tourist Board of Rijeka and Kvarner Tourist Board.
When well-known Croatian cellist Ana Rucner comes to Dubrovnik, everybody knows: summer is coming! For a tenth year in a row this talented cellist will hold her annual summer music festival 'Ana in the City'.
With the guest appearance of the versatile and charismatic Croatian pianist and composer Matej Mestrovic, Ana will start her concert at 5 am, June 21st, 2020, on the first day of summer and World Music Day in the beautiful amphitheater of Excelsa real estate at the top of Srd.
Welcoming summer in Dubrovnik, with sunrise and amazing music – it doesn't get better than this!
International Yoga Day is celebrated on Sunday, June 21st, and one of the best ways to mark it surely on the beach in Dubrovnik!
WE DU Yoga invites everybody to join them on the Copacabana beach this Sunday to celebrate this day together.
-The idea is simple, a bit of exercise, a bit of breathing, a bit of dipping in the sea and socializing. A light and relaxed morning in the company of positive and dear people – the organizers wrote.
The class will start at 8.30 am and last until 10 and then it's time for relaxation. The only thing you need to bring is a yoga mat or a beach towel.
The promotional film Croatia Your Next Filming Destination, shot in cooperation between the Croatian Tourist Board and the production company Balduci film, won second place in the "Region International" category in March this year at the jubilee, 20th edition of the prestigious The Golden City Gate festival. It is a festival held during the ITB tourist fair in Berlin, and as the fair and the award ceremony were not held due to the situation with the coronavirus, Balduci film director Spomenka Saraga presented the award from Berlin to the Croatian Tourist Board Director Kristjan Stanicic.
-We are extremely proud of the success of the film, which promotes Croatian film locations and additionally positions Croatia as an attractive country on the map of world production centers. Despite the fact that the corona virus pandemic has stopped the production momentum in the world and in our country, we are pleased that, due to the good epidemiological situation, our country is perceived in international production circles as a safe country to start film production - said the Director Kristjan Stanicic, adding that according to information from HAVC, the delayed filming of foreign projects in Croatia is expected to start at the end of the summer, while the filming of domestic projects started last week, with the recommended precautions.
-The award from Berlin is a great success if we take into account that the competition included films from all over the world, from famous world destinations, and they were evaluated by as many as 45 members of the jury of various professions. The festival awards films in 18 categories, and the best are chosen by an international jury made up of representatives from various sectors - from business people to artists. Every international award makes us especially happy and gives us the wind in our backs, and since our films have been submited to several other festivals, we are looking forward to the results of autumn festivals - said the screenwriter and producer of the film Spomenka Saraga.
The promotional film Croatia Your Next Filming Destination, in addition to winning silver in Berlin, recently won two gold awards at the prestigious American festival The Telly Awards, also check out soap2day, which was held for the 41st time this year, while at the Riga International Film Festival the film won the main jury award.
Good trends on the Croatian film scene are also confirmed by the Croatian Audiovisual Center, which says that the interest of foreign producers in filming in Croatia is really great, especially for locations on the coast, but also for "undiscovered" locations in Kijevo, Knin, Glina, Obrovac, Zir and Petrova gora, as well as in already known locations such as Rovinj, Dubrovnik, Rijeka, Trogir, Pag and Zagreb.
Fuel prices in Croatia have risen again since midnight - yesterday it was announced that diesel fuel will go up by five, and petrol by six and a half kuna for a full 50-liter tank – Novi list reports.
According to the Ministry of Economy, a liter of Eurosuper 95 is on average 8.78 kuna or 13 lipa more than last week. Eurodiesel is 10 kuna more expensive per liter and now its price is 8.35 kuna on average.
The price of autogas varies between 3.92 and 4.13 kuna.
These are the highest fuel prices in Croatia in the last three months, although last week the price of oil on world markets fell again by an average of 8 percent.
Promotional action of the City of Dubrovnik and the Dubrovnik Tourist Board named "Beginning of summer in Dubrovnik" from June 16th to June 30th will offer you something amazing: free entrance to Dubrovnik museums (Cultural and Historical Museum in the Rector's Palace, Maritime Museum in the Fortress of St. John, Ethnographic Museum in the granary Rupe, museum in the Revelin Fortress), as well to to the Marin Drzic House and the Museum of Modern Art Dubrovnik. On this occasion, the working hours have been changed and these facilities will be open from 10 am to 6 pm from Tuesday to Sunday (Mondays are not open to visitors).
The campaign includes discounts and benefits for visitors to Dubrovnik on numerous tourist services from a number of different categories, from sights, museums, galleries, accommodation providers and caterers, and the goal is to encourage local guests to visit Dubrovnik. The same promotion includes free admission for all visitors to the Trsteno Arboretum, the Natural History Museum, the Homeland War Museum and Lazareti during office hours.
The City Walls and the Lokrum Reserve offer discounts, and for one purchased weekly Dubrovnik card, you get one for free, with which numerous hotels, private renters, tourist agencies and catering facilities offer their services at reduced prices.
You can see the full offer HERE.