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.
Dubrovnik’s impressive start to the tourism season continued in May when 209,575 visitors arrived in the city. This is an increase over the same month from last year of a massive 14 percent, according to figures just released by the Dubrovnik Tourist Board. A total of 733,094 overnight stays were realised in May, again an increase of 14 percent over May 2017.
During the first five months of 2018, there were 413,831 arrivals in the Dubrovnik-Neretva County with 1,354,666 overnight stays. Compared to 2017, arrivals increased by 10 percent and overnight stays by 8 percent.
Most of the visitors were from the United Kingdom, Germany, Croatia, the United States and France.
For the six month in a row Croatia is among the top EU countries in regards to a fall in unemployment. In April this year the unemployment level in Croatia was recorded at 9.1 percent, which is in fact the lowest level in the past nine years.
On a European Union level the rate of unemployment in April was 7.1 percent, with the Czech Republic having the lowest rate at only 2.2 percent. The highest rate of unemployment was seen in Greece, with just over 20 percent, and Spain with almost 16 percent.
The seasonally adjusted unemployment rate in Croatia dropped in April to the lowest level in the last nine years, to 9.1 percent, a 0.2 percent drop from March. Some 164,000 people were unemployed in April in Croatia, 4,000 fewer on the month. Compared to April 2017, the number dropped by 47,000.
A reader of The Dubrovnik Times sent us this rather funky photo of the particularly patriotic Mini on the streets of Dubrovnik today.
The latest Mini Coopers released this year have these rather attractive new Union Jack motif taillights. And this is the first time that we have seen one on the streets of Dubrovnik.
Clearly from the number plate this was a rented car and we wonder if the passenger and driver were British tourists in the city.
Five Seasons of Midsummer Scene Midsummer Scene Festival is celebrating its fifth season and, apart from the main production staged traditionally at Fort Lovrjenac, the organisers are offering a rich additional programme for this year.
The main festival production will be “A Midsummer Night’s Dream,” directed by Helen Tennison. Due to popular demand, the show returns after a sold out run last season. This play also opened Midsummer Scene in its inaugural season and it bears special significance for the festival.
The additional programme will feature two very different approaches to Shakespeare. The award-winning production Henry V (Man and Monarch), directed by Philip Parr and performed by Brett Brown explores Shakespeare’s most patriotic play.
H(2)O devised and performed by Anna Rakowska and Piotr Misztella and based on Hamlet – is highly physical and bilingual production of Teatr Strefa Otwarta in Wroclaw, Poland.
Five Seasons Concert performed by the Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra – is inspired by Shakespeare and includes an overture from Oberon by C. M. Weber, a selection from A Midsummer Night's Dream by F. B. Mendelssohn and Concert Suite No 1 from West Side Story by L. Bernstein.
Two Bards – Držić/Shakespeare – directed by Filip Krenus and performed by the Midsummer Festival ensemble – stages selected scenes from the comedy of lust and greed Uncle Maroje by Marin Držić, the greatest Croatian Renaissance playwright and Shakespeare’s precursor. The evening also includes readings of Shakespeare’s sonnets accompanied by Dubrovnik Symphony Orchestra String Quartet and soprano Andrea Marić.
The festival begins on the 20th of June and lasts until the 4th of July. For more information and tickets check out the festival’s website. http://midsummer-scene.com/
After the recent concert in Split the mega rock band Simple Minds have released a behind the scenes video of their Croatian adventure. Simple Minds played a free concert in Split on the Žnjan beach at the beginning of May and in spite of the terrible storm that hit the venue the event was extremely popular.
The video was shot by the band’s drummer, Cherisse Osei, and apart from showing some great behind the scenes footage of the band before the Split concert there is also an “up close and personal” look of the city.
Check out the video
After the Eucharistic celebration, which was led by Dubrovnik bishop Mate Uzinić, on Thursday evening the streets of the historic core were filled with the solemn Corpus Christi procession.
The procession, as an essential part of the celebration of the present day of Corpus Christi, went from the Ulica Puca Street, to the great Onofrio's Fountain down the Stradun and back to the Dubrovnik Cathedral.
It is a travel inclination that just won’t go out of fashion. After a whole array of bare behinds in Dubrovnik appeared on social media sites last year the trend continues this year with a couple of female behinds on the mountain of Srd overlooking Dubrovnik.
As dust fell over Dubrovnik these two female tourists took the opportunity to get back to nature and strip down to their birthday suits for a “moonlit” photo.
In fact, this rather unusual travel photo trend, which is called Cheeky Exploits, was started by a young lady from London. And these two latest bare cheeked friends have opened up the bottomless photo season in Dubrovnik for this year.
Croatia will have all year round flights to South Korea starting this September. The airline Korean Air will operate flights between Zagreb and Seoul three times a week. A statement from the Zagreb Airport read “We are very proud to announce that from September 2018, Croatia and the Far East will be closer than ever. Korean Air, the largest air carrier from South Korea will connect Seoul and Zagreb three times a week year-round".
The airport also made a pint of stating that this link to South Korea will be the third new airline that has been added to the schedule this year, after Aegean Airlines and Air Canada Rouge. It is believed that a 218-seat Airbus A330-200 will be used by Korean Air and that the actual link will be Seoul to Zagreb and then onto Zurich. This new airline, and especially this new destination, will certainly help to boost tourism figures in Croatia in the winter months.