Cetin Cetintas is a yoga teacher that has just recently visited Dubrovnik. And he discovered that yoga and Dubrovnik make the perfect combination! This yoga teacher shared some photos on his official instagram account that is followed by over 153 thousand people and the reactions were great.
-I do yoga in every country I visit. I love Dubrovnik. City is so alive. Every corner has its own charactheristics – commented Cetin for The Dubrovnik Times and discovered that his favourite part was the whole Old City.
When asked if Dubrovnik is a good place to practice yoga, he says – yes!
-It's very good and inspiring place. Fort, Old City Walls and the sea… perfect combination – says Cetin.
And he is sure an attraction wherever he goes, since he practices yoga, and Dubrovnik wasn't any different.
-People get excited when they see me. I think yoga connects people (even if they don't do yoga) easily. I have new friends and some of them are cats and dogs! - jokes Cetin.
The Mayor of the City of Dubrovnik, Mato Franković, thanked all the employees of the emergency service and utility companies that assisted during the New Year's Eve.
In an open letter on the city’s website the mayor wrote -
On behalf of the city of Dubrovnik, I would like to thank all of the emergency services and all the employees of the municipal utility services who spent New Year's night on duty for the smooth functioning of the city as well as the safety of our fellow citizens and visitors.
Dubrovnik showed that it is the most beautiful open stage in the world for New Year's Eve. According to official estimates of the Ministry of Interior there were between 15 and 20 thousand people on the Stradun for New Year, which is the largest organized open event that has been held in our town since 2000. This is also supported by the data of the Dubrovnik Tourist Board, according to which 28% more guests decided to spend their New Year in Dubrovnik compared to the previous year.
Therefore, once again, I express my sincere gratitude to all the public services that ensured that New Year's Eve, and that the New Year's night passed peacefully and with the highest level of organization, just as the City of Dubrovnik deserves, to the pride of all our citizens.
A small family hotel from the Croatian city of Split has been awarded Best Heritage Hotel in the world.
At the end of the tourist season 2017, the prestigious nomination house World Luxury Hotel Awards headquartered in the Republic of South Africa awarded the best hotels in the world in thirty categories at the gala dinner held in Saint Moritz, Switzerland in December 2017.
Several other hotels from Croatia were nominated in various categories, however, numerous international jury i.e. more than 300,000 online voters selected Heritage Hotel Antique Split as the best in the Luxury Heritage Hotel category.
‘’We are very honoured to receive this award. In the first place, we were most surprised by the nomination itself. At the end of last September, the World Luxury manager sent us an invitation to participate at this event. She discovered us thanks to excellent reviews on Trip Advisor’’, commented Jakov Milun, the proud owner of Heritage Hotel Antique Split.
The family-run hotel is located in the heart of the Diocletian’s Palace in the centre of Split. It has eight rooms and is actually a small boutique hotel situated in an antique ‘’facility with patina’’ thanks to which the hotel made it to the additional Heritage Hotel category.
Apart from interestingly decorated rooms, the hotel offers breakfast in a rich Dalmatian style, which, along with an excellent service led this small tourist facility to the prestigious title – the world’s Best Heritage Hotel.
Award winning hotel in Split
It has been called “the pearl of the Adriatic,” and “heaven on earth,” but how did the ancient city of Dubrovnik actually get the name of Dubrovnik?
In fact, Dubrovnik wasn’t the first name given to this Adriatic beauty, it wasn’t even the second name. You could say that the actual naming of this city reflects the complicated and yet fascinating past of the city. The first recorded use of the name Dubrovnik came in the 12th century, but it didn’t really catch on till 400 years later.
It is difficult to delve into Dubrovnik’s rich history without getting tangled in a spider’s web of information. Let’s start at the beginning. The city was founded in the 7th century on a rocky outcrop. This outcrop was named Laus by the first inhabitants, which means rock in ancient Greek, and so we have the first name – Laus.
Laus over the centuries was changed to Raus, Rausium, Ragusium and eventually Ragusa. From the 10th century until the 1808 Ragusa, or the Republic of Ragusa, was used as the official name. Although strangely the first recorded use of Dubrovnik was in the 12th century and was used more frequently by the late 16th century. Meaning that the two names overlapped for a few centuries.
So where does the name of Dubrovnik come from?
Name changes over the centuries
Rising high above the Old City is the mountain of Srđ has both protected and served the city in differing ways for years. Although its slopes are mainly bare today they weren’t always naked. Thick oak forests used to spread far and wide over Srđ. This very oak was used to start building the city and then in later years to create a powerful maritime force. Although today the city is one stone façade after another its beginnings were very much more timber. And the Slavic name for oak is – Dub. You’ve already seen the beginnings of the name Dubrovnik. Just to spread it out a little the Slavic word for an oak forest was Dubrava.
And that is where Dubrovnik gets its present day name from.
In mid-October last year Croatia was visited by Chinese celebrities and their accompanying staff and now the product is out – Day Day Up show about Croatia.
Day Day Up is a popular Chinese talk show broadcast on the Hunan Television. The show is co-hosted by Wang Han, Da Zhangwei, Qian Feng and Wang Yibo. It has drawn great attention from the public especially student groups and other young people for its humor, style, and the public figures who appear as guests.
This show, according to the Chinese media, influences public opinion, especially where the Chinese will travel and which country they will choose for their vacation. And if that’s right, we are pretty sure that Croatia may be their next dream destination. Or more precisely – Dubrovnik, because a big part of the show was filmed in our beautiful city. There is Game of Thrones story and all this includes some amazing shots of Dubrovnik.
Hosts tried our specialties, learned to dance Lindo, listened Croatian music and many other things, since the show is a combination of entertainment and education. Some of the famous people that presented Croatia are Ana Rucner, Maksim Mrvica, Miroslav Ciro Blazevic, Jelena Rozga…
The show was recently broadcast on Hunan TV, and the Chinese estimate that it was watched by an incredible number of 300 million people, while it’s expected that it will reach even more viewers on the internet.
And the influence of this type of shows shouldn’t be underestimated. One similar show, after being broadcasted in South Korea, brought 100 thousand new guests to Croatia.
You can watch the show that lasts over an hour and a half beneath and we must say – it’s entertaining.
The German airline giant, Lufthansa, is expanding its operations in Croatia in 2018 by making the Dalmatian coastal resort of Zadar a new destination.
From the 28th of April Lufthansa will operate two flights a week from Frankfurt to Zadar, on Saturdays and Sundays, for the duration of their summer 2018 flight schedule.
This new route, which will be operated with an Airbus A319 aircraft, will be the fifth Croatian destination for the biggest German airline company, after Dubrovnik, Zagreb, Pula and Split.
Along with the thousands of party goers who celebrated New Year’s Eve on the Stradun in the heart of the Old City of Dubrovnik was a famous face from the world of football.
Former Manchester City striker and current forward for Serie A club Roma, Edin Dzeko, brought in the New Year with his wife, Amra Silajdžić, and they kissed as the fireworks echoed the sounds of 2018.
Dzeko, who is also the captain of the Bosnian and Herzegovina National team, is a frequent visitor to Dubrovnik and from the looks of these photos that were uploaded onto social media he and his wife will remember the beginning of 2018 with smiles on their faces.
The holidays bring the best out in us. ''It's the most wonderful time of the year'', says the song. And now, when they've passed, most of us feel a bit off-balanced. But, there is a great way to change that – by helping to those who maybe didn't have their most wonderful time of the year just yet.
One way to do it is by the new organization called ''Circle of love''. We caught up with one of the founders, a young girl from Dubrovnik – Nikolina Boro, who explained how Africa changed her life and what is the purpose of the ''Circle of love''.
-I met Lea Lesjak in February and we went to Kenya together. Our first goal was to teach English and Maths, but after around two weeks of lectures we concluded that that wasn't enough. We decided that we must help in other ways too – Nikolina says about the starting of their wonderful humanitarian journey.
A WHOLE DIFFERENT WORLD
Nikolina and Lea were particulary motivated by the stories of their students that quickly went under their skin.
-For example, one little girl named Benta who is just 11 years old has a mother that is a prostitute. She is often telling her that she needs to find a man or her life has no meaning. There is a child that didn't eat for three days – dad doesn't care, mum left him. There are many other stories similar to that – Nikolina explains, adding that their first goal was to help to those children that they met and that had no plans of making an organization.
So, they sent messages to almost everybody they knew, asking if they are willing to help with some donations. After just one day there was around 10 people who are more than happy to sponsor the children in need.
-We decided to interview as many children that we can while we are still in Africa, in order to find them sponsors when we go back to Croatia – says Nikolina. Before they came back to Croatia they had around 40 sponsors and raised around 10 thousand dollars! When they arrived back, they were joined by seven more young ladies and decided to make it more formal – an organization that will help the children in Africa.
Nikolina was overwhelmed with her experience and she admits that it’s really hard to say what affected her the most.
-The tragic stories are stuck in my head. There was one girl, Milka, who was 12 years-old and weighed only 15 kilos. She has HIV and got tuberculosis too. When you get those two, you are one step closer to death. Her father died because of HIV and her step-mother didn't take care of her. She was totally neglected. We interviewed her and a few days later arrived with food. She couldn't even eat it, she threw up everything. We took her to the hospital, where the conditions were terrible. She was given the wrong diagnosis at the start, so she got bronchitis too! But after some time it got better. Around a month ago she weighed over 30 kilos, she started recovering and we found her a sponsor. She is supposed to go back to school now in January – explains Nikolina and tells how hard it was to collect money for the hospital, which was a terrible experience, with syringes all over the floor and even chickens on the hospital ground…
Little Milka before and after
The founders of the 'Circle of love' had a really hard time with their first impressions of Africa and Nikolina admits that they often cried because they felt that they can't change a thing.
-But we got over it. It made us think – maybe we’ll make something if we inform as many people as we can. And honestly, we were surprised by the responses.
STARTING WITH BABY STEPS
The goal of the organization at first was to find sponsors for children. At first the collected money went to Kenya, especially to the school ‘Light Stars Academy’, where Lea and Nikolina worked at the beginning. The school was in terrible condition and after the donations has five new classrooms and now the new kitchen is being built.
Now, the ‘Circle of love’ is collecting money for an orphanage for sexually abused children. They are planning to make an orphanage for 30 children, which costs – believe it or not – only 2,500 dollars.
With this being an absolute priority, sponsorships for children are also available and every Kuna, Euro or Dollar can make a great difference.
-We have a future plans too, of course. We are planning to spread across Kenya and then Uganda. Our main goal is to protect the children that are HIV positive or abused. To give them a home – says Nikolina.
Nowadays a lot of people are skeptical when it comes to humanitarian organizations, because they are scared of being tricked.
-A lot of people asked – why? Why to make an organization, why are we doing it this way, why this, why that. But it’s completely different when you go there and see how exactly children can be helped – and they are not – says Nikolina.
The founders of the organization made sure that they are not tricked and that the money goes to right hands. They met Emanuel – African who has been a great help to them and has indescribable love for all the children and is something even willing to give all he has to them, rather than help himself. All donations get some kind of proof that they went to those who need it – videos, photos, report cards…
UNBREAKABLE BOND WITH AFRICA
Nikolina is sure that she will return to Africa. When – she doesn’t know yet, but is definitely sure she will. There is some sort of magic in this poor, but special country.
Many people thought that she was too sensitive to go there, but she made a decision and pursued it. Even though she admits she was scared, especially when she needed to get vaccinated before the trip.
-There is always some fear, which is ok, because you need to be careful everywhere. But I felt really safe in Africa because we had Emanuel, who went everywhere with us.
She says that she easily adjusted to life in Africa, especially because she had company – Lea – and they functioned well together. It’s always easier when you don’t have to go through that kind of experience alone. They had a lot of edgy situations and it wasn’t all roses.
-This experience might not be for everybody, but if you have a wish to do it – go for it! If you want to help – just do it! – says Nikolina, who was contacted by many of her friends that were considering going to Africa once in their life.
EVERY DOLLAR COUNTS
The one thing she really wanted to emphasize are so called ‘street boys’, because she never heard for them from the media. Children, aged one and up, are addicted to glue. It’s a sad story – when mothers can’t afford food for their young ones, they give them glue to sniff, so they lose any need for food. Then, children get addicted to glue, running around and asking people for help.
-It’s so hard to choose who to help, because you can’t help everybody. But education is the key. If they have an education, they have a chance to make something, to live a better life – says Nikolina, still heartbroken from leaving the children she created a special bond with, but happy because she knows she is doing everything she can to improve their life quality.
It’s interesting what you can do with just 100 Kuna (around 16 dollars) in Africa. You can pay monthly scholarship with one meal per day, cure malaria, buy a bunch of clothes and shoes for children – with money left for food too!Every donation is more than welcome and will be surely used in a good way – from orphanage to medical treatments (that can cost around 10 dollars – which many people can’t afford). There is no minimal donation and every dollar counts – so don’t worry if you can’t give much.
If you want to help, you can make a donation through the official page of the Circle of love, with Paypal or through the bank account
Erste&Steiermärkische Bank d.d.
The Austrian Chancellor Sebastian Kurz and the Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte have expressed their concern about the border dispute between Croatia and Slovenia, reported the Slovenian Press Agency (STA).
At the press conference held after the meeting with his Dutch counterpart, Kurz commented that he was very unhappy due to the situation in the neighbouring country of Slovenia and that he would like to ‘’contribute positively to the resolving of the conflict’’.
The Dutch Prime Minister Rutte also expressed his willingness to help resolve this issue.
Just to remind you, following a series of unsuccessful attempts to resolve the dispute over their land and maritime boundary, Slovenia and Croatia, with the facilitation of the European Commission, signed an arbitration agreement on the 4th of November 2009 on establishing an arbitral tribunal tasked to determine; the course of the maritime and land border between the two countries, Slovenia’s junction to the sea, and the regime for the use of the relevant maritime areas.
On the 29th of July 2017, the Arbitral Tribunal reached the decision about the border between Croatia and Slovenia. However, Croatia have not recognized and accepted the arbitral ruling because it withdrew from the arbitration process in 2015, which considers contaminated and compromised, whilst Slovenia insists on its implementation.
The Gallup International (GIA) The End of Year Survey is a traditional research conducted since 1977. This year it was conducted in combination with various methods in 55 countries around the world and almost 54,000 respondents participated. And the research was also carried out in Croatia last year, with 500 people taking part. in it.
The index of economic optimism in Croatia is -26, which is in line with the global average. The most pessimistic countries are Italy (index -50), Greece (-42) and Turkey (-40). The index of economic pessimism is also extremely high among the EU member states, as the average index is -16. On the other hand, Nigeria (59), Vietnam (55), Indonesia (53), and India (46) are economically the most optimistic countries in the world. South Asia is considered the most optimistic among all regions of the world with the optimism index 16, while the US has a – 3 ranking.
Croatia’s neighbours have a mixed outlook on the future, from Slovenia with a +5 ranking to Bosnia and Herzegovina with a -27 ranking.
Almost 40% of the Croatian population believe that 2018 will be better than the previous one, which sounds optimistic, although in the year 2016, 52% of the respondents expected a better next year.