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.
During the visit of the President of the Republic of Croatia, Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović, to the Mljet National Park on Friday the Park presented the first of its three electric boats that will carry visitors on the lake.
The first of these three new electric vessels was named "Niko Nodilo" in memory of one of the three sailors killed on the boat “Perast” in the Homeland War. And the other two vessels, when they arrive will be named after the two other sailors, Antun Matić and Pero Sršen.
These three ecologically sensitive ships will replace the older fleet that operated as ferries around the larger lake in the middle of the Mljet National Park.
The first works on the construction of the largest infrastructure project in Croatia for decades will begin in the next couple of weeks but already it would appear that the project has hit a bump in the road.
The Chinese company, China Road and Bridge Corporation, who won the public tender to build the Peljesac Bridge published an advert looking for 11 construction engineers to work on the planned bridge but so far haven’t been able to find anyone.
At the beginning of June the Chinese company advertised for 11 highly qualified engineers, this was the first steps in the whole project, however there isn’t one engineer registered with the unemployment bureau and it would appear that they will have to cast their net further to find suitable applicants.
In 2018 the Croatian government granted 9,000 work visas to the construction industry to import foreign workers, and as all of these visas are yet to be applied for it would seem that China Road and Bridge Corporation might be tempted to import more foreign assistance.
Domagoj Ferdebar, the general secretary of the Croatian Construction Union, commented that the country is missing around 1,000 builders, making it even harder for the Chinese company to locate enough qualified workers. And it would appear from reports in the local media that construction workers from neighbouring countries, such as Montenegro, Serbia, and Bosnia and Herzegovina could be called in to assist building the Peljesac Bridge.
Croatia’s impressive start to the 2018 tourism season continued with news from the Ministry of Tourism that revenues from tourism are well up on last year’s figures. In the first quarter of 2018 direct revenue from tourism amounted to 450.2 million Euros, which is an increase of a healthy 14 percent when compared to the same period from last year.
"It's also proof that, by creating new, quality offers and, thereby, reasons for tourists to arrive outside the summer months, excellent results can be achieved quickly. This year almost €1 billion is being invested in tourism, which will certainly add momentum to destination development and, thereby, Croatia's economic growth," commented the Croatian Minister of Tourism, Gari Cappelli.
Tourism is one of the most important branches for the country’s economic situation and the income from the first quarter made up 4 percent of the country’s GDP for the first quarter.
Fashion experts had predicted that these rather revealing lacy and racy summer trousers would be a hit this season, however we aren’t really sure if they are compliant with the strict Old City dress code.
This tourist turned quite a few heads this morning as she entered the ancient Old City of Dubrovnik in these see-through black trousers. In 2016 the City Council introduced a dress code for the Old City, commonly known as the “bikini ban.” Amongst other points it states that ladies aren’t allowed to wear bikinis, and for guys – no torso showing.
Showing your skin could cost you 1000 Kuna, or around 133 euro or 146 dollars. However, since its introduction the regulation hasn’t been enforced aggressively at all. But it would be interesting to hear what the inspectors think about today’s creation…well it isn’t a bikini after all.
Croatia will be cheered on in their first knock out round match against Denmark by the President, Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic.
The Croatian President has travelled to Russia for the World Cup game and has uploaded a photo onto her Facebook account from the plane. She is posing on the plane with a number of other supporters who are making their way to the game. Around 15,000 Croatians are estimated to have bought tickets for the match tonight.
“Great atmosphere from the early morning. Let’s go for a win,” commented Grabar-Kitarovic on her social media site. The President’s office had earlier commented that she is going to the match in Russia on a private arrangement and that she will cover all the costs of the trip.
On the back of three impressive performances in Group D of the 2018 World Cup Croatia have leapt to thirteenth in the real time FIFA World Rankings.
After defeating Nigeria, Argentina and Iceland in their three group games Croatia now face Denmark today in the first game of the final rounds with a place in the quarter finals at stake. Croatia or Denmark will face the winners of Spain and Russia with the quarter final game to be played on the 7th of July.
FIFA produce a “Real Time” rankings system which gives points for every international match and Croatia are now thirteenth on the list a jump of seven places. Presumably a win over Denmark today will push them further up the list. On the full FIFA rankings list as of the 7th of June, Germany were sitting in first position, but after failing to qualify from their group this tournament they will be knocked off top position.
The funkiest wine bar in Dubrovnik continues with its art season with the opening of an exhibition this week. On Friday an exhibition by one of the most talented and unique photographers in Dubrovnik – Goran Bisic – opened in the Tavulin Wine & Art Bar. Known for his black and white style and his keen eye for catching the atmosphere in the historic Old City it is well worth taking the time to check it out.
Photo - Goran Bisic
The family run bar teams up with several artists throughout the year to create an exhibition on the stone walls of the bar. Basically you are going for a night out, a bottle of wine with friends, and you get an art exhibition throw into the deal.
The exhibition, entitled “The Other Day,” features images that Bisic has captured during the past year on the streets of the Old City. This exhibition consists of photographic records of urban everyday life and he has stunningly captured a different angle on the city. And if the work wasn’t impressive enough it might surprise you to know that all of the photos haven’t been taken with an expensive camera and equipment, but with a mobile phone. Proof that Bisic has an amazing eye for details and a sense for the moments around him.
Check out our article about the author of these beautiful Dubrovnik images here
Another day and another horrible example of parking in Dubrovnik. A reader sent this photo to Dubrovacki Vjesnik of a parked taxi blocking half of a busy street in Dubrovnik.
The taxi was sticking out into the inside lane of the road and causing cars to manoeuvre dangerously around it.
Finding a free parking space in Dubrovnik in the summer might be incredibly difficult but a stone’s throw from this “parked” taxi is a designated taxi rank.