Dubrovnik is a beautiful city and no wonder that many photographers find it attractive for their photo shoots. All the social networks are full of beautiful shots from our city, but while browsing Instagram and looking at photos from Dubrovnik, we found ourselves always stopping at the same profile, that from Goran Bisic.
Unique is the best word to describe his photos that show moments and details of our city that we wouldn't even notice passing by.
-I'm mostly inspired by the specific light situations, then geometric shapes, lines, textures and I'm certainly not missing some (un)usual street opportunities – says Goran, who is really modest about his work that attracts attention of many.
One more special thing about his photography is that all of his photos are black and white, which gives them even more charm.
-Somehow, from the beginning of my photography journey, black and white proved to be the best way to express myself creatively and to share everything I see and feel through my camera lens (or cell phone display) - explains Goran.
Real estate prices in the European Union slightly accelerated in the third quarter of 2017, in comparison to the same period the year before, whilst their growth slowed slightly in Croatia, shows data from the European Statistical Office (Eurostat).
According to Eurostat data for the third quarter of last year, real estate prices in the EU increased by 4,6 percent compared to the same period of 2016, whilst in Croatia they increased by 3,8 percent compared to the same period of 2016.
Furthermore, among the EU member countries, the highest growth in real estate prices at the annual level was recorded in the Czech Republic (12,3%), followed by Ireland (12%) and Portugal (10,4%).
A decline in real estate prices was recorded only in Italy, 0,9 percent in comparison to the third quarter of 2016.
Croatia’s real estate prices in the third quarter of 2017 increased by 0,6 percent in comparison to the previous quarter when they increased by 3,7 percent, said the Eurostat report.
In the period from July to September 2017, lower real estate prices on a quarterly basis recorded only Romania (1,6%), Finland and Italy (0,5%) and Cyprus (0,3%).
High blood pressure or hypertension is one the sneakiest diseases in the world today. Some studies show that this disease causes one of eight deaths in the world.
According to a survey published by The Economist from the notable scientific magazine Lancet, Croatia is among the countries with the highest number of high blood pressure patients.
Dr Nediljko Pivac, a cardiologist from Split, commented that in Croatia men aged 40 to 50 years suffer from hypertension. When it comes to Croatian women, when they enter the period of menopause, the risk of suffering from high blood pressure increases, thus, women aged 65 years and older suffer from disease more than Croatian men.
‘’Around 47,5 percent of all deaths in Croatia are caused by cardiovascular diseases’’, said Dr Pivac.
According to the latest survey, the highest number of hypertension cases was recorded in Slavonia, followed by Dalmatia, which was quite unexpected given the fact that Dalmatian cuisine is one of the healthiest in the world. It seems that more and more people are buckling under the pressure of the fast lifestyle of today.
‘’A silent killer’’ as is usually attributed to hypertension, affects between 16 and 37 percent of the population globally. In 2010 hypertension was believed to have been a factor in 18 percent of all deaths (9,4 million globally).
According to the popular German automobile club ADAC, Croatia is the third on the list of favourite camping destinations among Germans.
The Croatian region of Istria is the most desirable regional destination among German motorists for the eighth year in a row. The popularity of Istria increased by 1 percent in comparison to last year, to a 13 percent of the share. Way behind Istria is Lago di Garda in Italy (5,2% share) and Dalmatia (5% share), whilst Italian camping spots Veneto and Friuli placed in the fourth place with 3,9 percent share.
Every year ADAC carries out a survey on travelling by car to a vacation among 170,000 routes made by ADAC’s experts for its members. The survey covers data on the use of the ADAC Maps Routenplaner for marking itineraries from Germany to destinations where Germans spend their holiday.
Out of a sample of 1,3 million inquiries made by ADAC Maps Routenplaner users, around 13 percent of them referred to Istria as the most sought after region.
In the category of countries, Croatia placed as the third auto destination with a 7,6 percent share, behind Germany leading the way with a 27,6 share and Italy with 18,1 percent share, but ahead of countries such as Austria (6,8 % share) and Turkey (6,2 % share).
Croatia was also ranked third of the list of favourite German camping destinations, after Italy and Germany, and ahead of France and Spain.
Day of Saint Blaise, the patron saint of Dubrovnik, is one of the most important events in the city od Dubrovnik. Thousands of citizens and their guests rush to the Old City on the February 3rd in order to participate in this traditional and beautiful day.
That's why it's good to know that just today Mayor of Dubrovnik, Mato Frankovic, sent a notice that all the buses that drive to the historical city of Dubrovnik will be free of charge on February 2nd from 2pm and during the day St. Blaise Festivity and the Day of the City, February 3rd.
If you want to discover more about Dubrovnik patron saint, be sure to check Five things you didn’t know about St. Blaise.
Being 65 and 69 years old does not mean you hang up your boots; you just may not wear them as long because you take time to enjoy the simple pleasures of life. Elizabeth Weigt, a Bermudian by birth along with her husband Michael have now decided to call Croatia home. We asked her why? Could she really leave the ‘Jewel of the Atlantic” for the” Pearl of the Adriatic”?
From the exotic climes of an island in the middle of the Atlantic to the Dubrovnik coastline. How did you first discover Dubrovnik?
In my life I have been fortunate to have lived in the US, Canada, Ireland and the UK. I have also travelled extensively. Because of the high cost of living and medical as well as the fact Bermuda is an island 600 miles in the middle of the Atlantic, I knew I would never retire there. I was actually on my way to Montenegro but also wanted to see Dubrovnik. We landed at night and made our way to a lovely B&B (Hotel Haus am Meer) in Cavtat. The next morning, I opened the door shutters and stepped out onto the balcony and knew I was ‘home’. The trip to Montenegro was cut short and the search in earnest for a place began.
What were your first impressions when you saw Dubrovnik and did you immediately think that you could call the city your new home?
The dramatic landscape, blue Adriatic, the weather was perfect. I felt so at home in the ‘old city’ but also loved the countryside and coast. The people were warm and friendly and without being pushy and could not have been more kind and helpful.
Whereas many Europeans and Americans now call Dubrovnik home as far as we know you are the only Bermudian living in Dubrovnik. Was it difficult to adjust your lifestyle when you arrive?
Not at all. I think it is a question of attitude. I am a guest here and have been made very welcome. It is all a question of attitude and respect. Coming from Bermuda where our two economic pillars are international business and tourism I have witnessed first-hand expatriates who constantly try to compare their life to what they had. It is insulting and non-productive. One has to respect the culture and customs of a country. There is also an organisation here called the Dubrovnik Foreign Circle. Its membership is geared to individuals who are married to or have Croatian ties or to expatriates who have decided to call Croatia home. I have found their support and assistance invaluable in helping to assimilate.
Enjoying the advent in Zagreb
Both Dubrovnik and Bermuda are tourist destinations and both live from the travel industry. Is it even possible to compare the tourism industry in both destinations? And if so is there anything Dubrovnik could learn from Bermuda?
Bermuda has made its share of mistakes with respect to the tourism industry. Many of these mistakes stem from not understanding the unique tourism product that a place has and who their ‘visitors’ are or what they want. Bermuda still has lots of work to do but it has of late been able to narrow its focus and target accordingly. Bermuda is an island and one cannot drive there so it is a little easier to control. Having worked in tourism all my life I recognise that it is not always easy to be all things to all visitors. However, their experience must be what drives your tourism and economic success. Bermuda grappled for years with their cruise ship policy and finally, I think, have it all most right. Dubrovnik desperately needs to address this situation as the crowds I have seen benefit no one, least of all the visitors who arrive by land and air, local shopkeepers and restaurant/cafe owners.
Hamilton on Bermuda has recently been declared as the most expensive city in the world. How do Bermudan prices compare to Croatia ones?
There is no comparison. Bermuda has a population of 65,000. It is 21 miles long by 1 mile wide has no natural resources, other than its weather and people, no industry and no ability to feed itself. There are some local farmers but by and large everything must be imported, including water at times. The cost of medical insurance is prohibitive and property is very expensive. In Croatia, as in other parts of Europe, one has choices and you have a country rich in farming. Life is simpler here, there is a wonderful sense of family and materialism has not taken over ‘yet’. It’s not just a question of cost but of quality of life.
What do you miss about life on Bermuda?
My family, my Mother is still there as is my daughter and my three grandsons. Most of my friends are making plans to visit at some point in time, they are very envious of me. And I am lucky I do get back several times a year.
Elizabeth swapped the golden beaches of Bermuda for the turquise Adriatic of Dubrovnik
Could you see yourself dropping roots in Dubrovnik and living here all year round? Although the city has a vibe through the warmer months the calm of the winter proves challenging for many people.
At our ages, not that we are ancient, we prefer the ‘calm’ to the frenzy of the summer months. We enjoy the simple thing and way of life Dubrovnik/Croatia offers and the ability to take our dogs on walks and enjoy the company of new friends. From the first time I visited almost a decade ago my mind has not changed. I really love this part of the world. My new challenge, to learn Croatian. Now that we will have the time we want to explore the country and not just visit.
The national air carrier of Croatia, Croatia Airlines, is planning to add new European destinations to its flight schedule this summer. One of the most interesting new routes is a direct line from Dubrovnik to Munich. With the German market an extremely important one for Dubrovnik the introduction of flights to another destination will surely attract interest.
"After several years of recession, the Croatian economy is recovering and the market requires new leisure destinations. This is why we expect that many travellers, both from Croatia and other markets, will use our products more", commented Croatia Airlines to the media.
Adding in a statement that “Croatia has been a tourist hit at a global level for several years, not only during the summer season but also in winter. In accordance with these trends and our capacities, in the future, we plan to further expand our European network of destinations and strengthen our position as a regional leader".
These new flights to Munich will start on the 30th of April and end in the middle of October, and five times a week the Bavarian city and Dubrovnik will be connected with flights.
When I first decided to pack up my bags and move to Croatia, well more precisely to Dubrovnik, all those years ago I was met with a look of bewilderment from most of my friends. Croatia was well off their radar. They had all roughly heard about it but almost exclusively as a war zone where they would watch BBC reporters wearing blue helmets in some muddy field. In fact, I was presented with a plastic blue helmet from my work colleagues when I waved goodbye, with jokes of “It isn’t bullet proof.”
I was certainly one of the pioneers. What a difference two decades make! From those early naïve years to now.
I have always had a fond spot for the Back to the Future franchise. It isn’t that I’m a great Michael J. Foxx fan but I liked the concept of time travel. If I could go back to 1998 what would I tell my “Marty McFly” self?
Buy apartments as AirBnb is coming soon and you will get rich overnight! I had no money back then (or now) so that wouldn’t have been great advice. Don’t buy shares in Agrokor as it will soon be flushed down the toilet! That wouldn’t have helped because there was no Agrokor then, Dubrovnik was fed by the monopoly that was Mediator back then. And shares in Mediator would have been about as valuable as a handful of dinars. Buy boxes and boxes of Nescafe and sell them for a huge profit, better still become the sole distributor of Nescafe in Croatia. Yes, hard to believe but Nescafe wasn’t around when I arrived, Turkish coffee popped my eye balls out so I used to drink poor substitutes called Divka or Bianka!
I should absolutely tell my young self to think about starting a company based around tourism, maybe something servicing cruise ships in some way, or just a gelato factory. I could have even gone into telecommunications, especially mobile telecommunications. But then I would have come up against the mammoth dinosaur that was Croatian Telekom, before the Germans bought it for peanuts, and long before VIP, Tele2 and the rest. Oh those days spent playing snake on the Nokia 6110.
Or even television media, back then we only had two channels HRT 1 and 2, so we used to turn around the antenna on the roof to face Italy to watch Seria A through a fog of fuzzy static. We always prayed for Jugo when it was a big derby. And then CMC came and we seemed to spend all day watching even fuzzier videos. Mare I Kate is a song that unfortunately I can never unlearn nor the sight of Štimac dressed as an extra from Only Fools and Horses in the video spot. I could have bought a small piece of land in the middle of the cable car route and planted a huge tree. And then when the Chileans rolled into town could have blackmailed them to pay me to cut down the tree.
I could have opened the first ever betting shop in Croatia, but then it was probably illegal anyway. Which would in fact have caused another problem. If you remember the films the way that Buff made his money was by using the Grays Sports Almanac to bet on sporting events, basically the sporting matches that he already knew the result to. But how could I tell my younger self to bet on matches, or anything in fact, if there were no betting shops. Just think of some of the odds I could have got. Who would have believed back then half of the things that have since occurred?
Who would have believed that Goran would win Wimbledon and Croatia finish third in the third in the World Cup! Oh those golden days.
I remember when a packet of cigarettes was the same price as a ticket on the City Walls, 7 Kunas. The posh smoked Filter 160 and the workers puffed on Largo. When we used to order Cockta and Stock (before it was retro and in) in Ferrari on Bourbon before rolling down to Sun City opposite Dubrovacka Banka. And then we would drive to visit our friends in Zaton but it would take hours because the Dubrovnik Bridge (or Frano Tuđman to all you HDZ supporters) was still in the planning process.
But I’m not Marty McFly, I don’t have a silver DeLorean and I don’t know a nutty professor, and you know want I have gone off the idea of going back to the future, or even the past. What was…well was. And memories are the real wealth of tomorrow.
It certainly isn’t every day that the BBC writes about “fjaka,” in fact we doubt that they have ever written about it before. But in an article entitled “Dalmatia’s Fjaka State of Mind” they have broken the mould. For those of you who were still wondering a fjaka is basically an afternoon nap or a siesta, and it is extremely popular in the summer months in laid back Dubrovnik.
The writer Kristin Vuković explains in his article for the BBC that a fjaka is “a sublime state in which a human aspires for nothing.” This recent article on the BBC Travel section has certainly received lots of feedback.
Check out the full article here
The reach of Dubrovnik’s promotion is getting further and further. The Dubrovnik- Neretva County Tourist Board has presented the tourism offer for the first time ever at the OTM Travel fair in Mumbai, India. This large and important tourism fair was held from the 18th to the 20th of January at the Bombay Convention and Exhibition Centre.
The Dubrovnik-Neretva County Tourist Board presented with the Croatian National Tourist Board and the Zadar Tourist Board as co-exhibitors.
Indian tourists are one of the fastest growing in the Dubrovnik County. In 2017 there were almost 15,000 tourists from India who achieved 37,000 overnight stays, this was 60 percent more than in 2016. One of the reasons for the growth in interest was the filming of the Bollywood blockbuster movie “Fan” starring Shah Rukh Khan. The film, which was released in 2016, was took $10 million at the cinemas on the opening weekend in India.