Saturday, 24 October 2020
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.


The internet edition of the American New York Times has published an article about the Top 10 favourite places on European rivers, lakes and coastlines.

Croatia's National Park Plitvice Lakes has also found its place on this prestigious list.
''For many Croats, however, the park’s importance is more than just physical. Near the border with Bosnia and Herzegovina, Plitvice is a symbolic and strategic fulcrum at the crux of the country’s boomerang shape, with one arm thrust east to the Pannonian Plain and the other south along the Adriatic’’, described New York Times in its article.

The New York Times journalist Alex Crevar also praised natural beauty of the Plitvice Lakes, ''I have worked as a travel writer in the Western Balkans for two decades, and for me, there are few places in the region that can compete with the Plitvice Lakes National Park in Croatia''.

Crevar also recommended places to visit while in the National Park, ''You have to visit the Great Waterfall, the largest waterfall, and then take the stone stairs to the viewpoint overlooking the Lower lakes''.

Apart from the Plitvice Lakes on the New York Times list, there are also Brighton Pier (UK), Utrecht (the Netherlands), Parc des Buttes-Chaumont (Paris), the Elbe river (Hamburg), fjords off Bergen (Norway), the Vltava river (Prague), the Eftalou hot springs and the Golden beach on Lesbos (Greece), and Cinque Terre (Italy).

One of the world's oldest air carriers and a member of the Star Alliance, LOT Polish Airlines has launched its summer flights between the Polish capital of Warsaw and Pula.

According to the LOT's summer schedule, seasonal flights between the two cities will be operated twice a week until the 8th of October 2017.

In addition, Adrian Kubicki, the spokesperson from LOT commented, ''Croatia is one of the most attractive countries on the Mediterranean but has not been fully discovered yet. Thanks to our summer flights from Warsaw as our hub airport to the Croatian coast, we will contribute to promoting Croatia as a perfect holiday destination, not just in Poland but in other countries as well’’.

Apart from LOT Polish Airlines, a number of world air carriers will operate seasonal flights to Pula this summer such as British Airways, easyJet, Norwegian Air Shuttle, Eurowings, Transavia, Red Wings Airlines, Jet2, and Thomson Airways.

Using a fleet of 43 aircraft, LOT Polish Airlines operates a complex network to almost 70 destinations in Europe, the Middle East, North America, and Asia. Most of the destinations are served from its hub, Warsaw Chopin Airport.

One of the most popular attractions in Dubrovnik, the Rector's Palace, will be closed until June 7th. The second phase of reconstruction was scheduled to be completed by the 31st of May this year, but had to be prolonged due to request of the Institute for Reconstruction of Dubrovnik for the extension of the works on the atrium of the Palace.

On Wednesday, June 7th, the Cultural and Historical Museum will work normally – from 9 am to 6 pm.

It will surely be great to get a chance to visit Rector’s Palace again, since it is closed from December 2016.

On the occasion of marking the Day of Nature Protection and the International Day of Biodiversity, the cleaning of the Saplunara beach and the area of the Natura 2000 ecological network on the island of Mljet was organized.

The pupils of the Lapad and Mljet primary schools, together with their teachers Ivan Cikatic and Katarina Lackovic Poruglas, were welcomed by the representatives of the Public Institution, the Director Ivica Grilec, the expert associate Margarita Polzer and the Director of the Municipal Mljet d.o.o. and Voda Mljet d.o.o. Ivan Srsen. They explained to the pupils the work of their institutions, as well as the harmfulness of marine waste for the ecosystem and the importance of preserving natural values, such as the Saplunara protected area.

During the cleaning of Saplunara as well as Blace Bay, dozens of waste bags, mostly plastic and styrofoam, were collected.

Saplunara has recently been listed as one of the best secret beaches in Europe by The Times.
- A wonderfully unspoilt beach, Saplunara is a kilometre- long cove split into two pine-backed sweeps of sand – the only non-pebble beaches on Mljet. Edged by a swathe of botanically rich natural park, Saplunara’s location on the southeastern tip of the island means it remains peaceful for most of the season. It is quite a drive from most of the places to stay in Mljet, but roads are quiet and the scenery is beautiful – it was written in the article.

The Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra will have a concert tonight, Tuesday, May 16, at the Museum of Modern Art Dubrovnik. The orchestra will be conducted by maestro Christoph Campestrini and the soloist will be Toni Kursar, the first horn of Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra. The start of the concert is at 9 pm.  

Program includes Mendelssohn's Hebrides (Fingal's Cave), Symphony no. 88 in G major, while soloist Toni Kursar will perform the Concert for Horn and Orchestra by Dubrovnik composer Petar Obradovic. This work has been dubbed two years ago in the Dominican church, and tomorrow we have the chance to hear it again in a completely different setting of the Museum of Modern Art, where Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra will have its concerts throughout May.

Hornist Toni Kursar was awarded the first prizes at national competitions during his schooling and in 2004 received the Rector's Award from the University of Zagreb and the Ivo Vuljevic Croatian Music Youth Award. He was a part of the international youth orchestra YMISO, the Young Danube Philharmonic, the Junge Philharmonie Salzburg, the Mostar Symphony Orchestra, the Croatian Chamber Orchestra, the Zagreb Philharmonic, the Nordic Chamber Orchestra and the Symphony Orchestra of Liechtenstein. In 2006 he enrolled in postgraduate studies in the class of  Radovan Vlatkovic at the Universität für Musik und Darstellende Kunst "Mozarteum" in Salzburg and in 2008. got his Masters degree. Since 2009 he has been employed as the first hornist of the Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra.

The two-day summit ''The Belt and Road'' which is being held in Beijing from the 14th to the 16th of May is the most important diplomatic event of the year.

On opening the summit, the Chinese president Xi Jinping said that China would invest $124 billion in the project ''The New Silk Road''. Although some world countries are sceptical about this project due to China's global influence and non-transparency, the summit has attracted 29 national leaders and representatives from 110 countries from four continents. The State secretary Marija Pejcinovic-Buric is leading the Croatian delegation.
The Chinese president Xi Jinping launched one of the most ambitious projects of today in 2013. The New Silk Road or One Belt is designed to reconnect continents, and the East and the West.

The project anticipates the construction of the fast railway, and the road network in a length of 13,000 kilometres. China has already invested $50 billion and announced to increase the investments for $14,5 billion.

On this occasion, Xi Jinping emphasized the importance of his new plan, which would create a path of peace, inclusiveness and free trade, and invited all present guests ''to leave old models based on rivalry and diplomatic games''.

As far as Croatia is concerned, it is questionable whether the country will become part of the New Silk Road or not. Last year in Riga, Croatia signed a memorandum with China on investment in ports and port infrastructure, however, the Chinese investment was never realized. ''China has invested in several project in Croatia so far, however, we hope that Croatia will ensure a better investment climate for China's investment, as investors are turning to more attractive locations'', commented Hu Zhaoming, the Chinese ambassador to Croatia.

The trade exchange between China and Croatia is around $1,5 billion, but Croatia has not yet made the most of the potential of the Chinese market, which has been growing and opening to the world.

If you need a little escape, you may find it in Cavtat, just 19 kilometers away from Dubrovnik. On the Sustjepan peninsula you can enjoy beautiful promenade, surrounded by woods, directly by the sea.

During that walk you also get a chance to peek into military bunker from World War II, which served as a mushroom farm for a while.

To get a feeling like you’re on the promenade, take a look at photo gallery made by Anton Hauswitschka.

Even though a gondola is a recognizable symbol of Venice around the globe, gondoliers or gondola drivers dressed in striped shirts wearing straw boaters with ribbons can no longer be seen only in this capital of the Veneto region in Italy.

The historic town and harbour of Trogir on the Adriatic coast in the Split-Dalmatia County has enriched its tourist offer with a gondolier driver!

The first Croatian gondolier Damir Misetic is a 27-year old young man from the island of Ciovo near Trogir who came up with a great business idea. He went to Venice and bought an old gondola, refurbished it and now he plans to drive tourists around Trogir.

The gondola is 11 metres long and it weighs 600 kilograms. It also has a solar panel to provide light, whilst the tour around Trogir lasts 45 minutes.

gondaler croatia

Damir Misetic - Josko Ponos / CROPIX

The Voice of Dubrovnik


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