Official Blog of Central Dalmatia Tourist Board


Tuesday, March 4, 2014

19 Truly Charming Places to See Before You Die: That Would Be Split

Something nice is happening with Split's international image.
Not only is the perception of the city changing from 'Gatewayt to the Islands' and a transit route to destination proper, but more bloggers are recognising its charm and beauty, and then listing Split in various global 'best of...' lists.
The latest inclusion is on BuzzFeeds's 19 Truly Charming Places to See Before You Die, in which Split is described thus:
This well-preserved Mediterranean getaway is home to more than 250,000, and has a winning combination of Roman ruins and gorgeous beaches, not to mention a lively nightlife scene.
To see the other 18, click here

Discover Sinj with Touristar TV

Award-winner producer Ashley Colburn's journey through Central Dalmatia continues...

After the first in the new series about Croatia, which covered Makarska, Colburn - who won an Emmy for her Wow Croatia documentary - heads into the Dalmatian hinterland, where the Sinj Tourist Board was on hand to organise a tour of one of Croatia's most fascinating town.

Discover it for yourself through the eyes of Ashley in the video below.

Vrboska Celebrates 400 Years of the 'Crying Cross'

The year is 1614.

Over in Hvar Town, the oldest public theatre in Europe has been open just two years. It is exactly 100 years since the end of the Great Rebellion under Matej Ivanic in Vrboska and Vrbanj.

Vrboska and Vrbanj are once more the centre of attention on the island. The source of the tension revolves around religious differences between two communities, one of whom is grouped around the Church of St Mary and the other the Church of St Lawrence. One parish wants to continue under the control of Vrbanj, the other was for independence for Vrboska. The conflict of the two camps is threatening to destroy the community.

Young Katarina, the daughter of seaman Petar Ordinanovic notices tears coming from a small cross.
The tears were interpreted as an appeal for unity. The legacy of the Crying Cross of Vrboska has been an annual procession on the first Friday in March, and this year's procession will mark the 400th anniversary of Katarina's vision.

In order to mark the occasion, Vrboska will have a special programme from March 6-9 (see below in Croatian), and it represents a unique opportunity to take part in a landmark religious tradition.

To learn more (in Croatian), Slobodna Dalmacija journalist Mirko Crncevic recently featured a 91 year-old Vrboska resident and her recollections of the processions of the past. Click here.

otvaranje zavjetne svetkovine
17:30 Sv. MISA

koju predvodi
hvarsko-bračko-viški biskup
msgr. Slobodan Štambuk

znanstveni skup
18:30 u crkvi Sv. Lovre
Tema: Postanak i urbanistički razvitak Vrboske Ambroz Tudor, Ministarstvo kulture, uprava za zaštitu kulturne baštine
Tema: Povijest župe
prof. Joško Bracanović, Hvar
Tema: Umjetnička oprema crkava u Vrboskoj
akademik Radoslav Tomić
Tema: Župna crkva sv. Lovre u Vrboskoj
dr. Darka Bilić, Institut za povijest umjetnosti
Tema: Tradicija štovanja Čudotvornog
sv. Križa
don Ivica Huljev, Vrboska

Završno slavlje
koju predvodi splitsko-makarski nadbiskup i metropolit msgr. Marin Barišić
Nakon mise:
svečana procesija sa zavjetnim Križem po mjestu
Završetak slavlja u župnoj crkvi

Brac and Hvar Promoted on Spanish National Television

In June last year, the Central Dalmatia Tourist Board assisted a Spanish film crew with logistics for a documentary they were making about islands in Croatia. Here they are filming in Vrboska, ably assisted by the Vrboska Tourist Board.

The one-hour programme, featuring six islands in Croatia - including the jewels of Hvar and Brac in Central Dalmatia - is now available online. And although it is in Spanish, you don't really need to speak Spanish to enjoy the beauty of the islands as portrayed on Spanish television.

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

New Game of Thrones Trailer Highlights Cental Dalmatia

There are less than two months to go until the start of the Game of Thrones series, much of it which was filmed in Central Dalmatia, and several local tourist agencies are already gearing themselves up for Game of Thrones tourists wanting to see the locations of the filming.

Can't wait for the series and wanting to see Diocletian's Palace as never before? An extended official trailers has just been released which gives a little more insight into the filming.

Brac, the Island of Culture and Adventure

One of the most popular destinations in Central Dalmatia is the island of Brac. Most famous perhaps at the source of the world-famous Brac stone, the island is one of the most fascinating in Croatia, a gorgeous mix of culture, heritage, gastronomy, adventure sports and beaches. Branded as the island of culture and adventure, it is not difficult to see why with this excellent new video which has just been released.

Is Johnny Depp Listening to the Omis Tourist Board?

With the eagerly-awaited release of the new Game of Thrones series - much of which was filmed in Central Dalmatia - is Croatia about to get another major tourism boost from a blockbuster filming on location? In the words of Croatia Week:

Rumors are circulating in Croatia that Johnny Depp and the cast of Pirates of the Caribbean will be in town to shoot the latest in the popular series later this year…

Production company Embassy Films Croatia, who were also involved in Game of Thrones filming in Croatia, have advertised castings on their official Facebook page for those who want to appear as extras in a ‘pirate story’, with Croatian media reporting that the story is none other than Pirates of the Caribbean.

Casting and auditions will take place in Zagreb on Saturday 15 February, and in Dubrovnik on Tuesday 18 February. Filming is scheduled to start in March in Dubrovnik.

Johnny Depp and friends would obviously be very welcome, but is the Omis Tourist Board maybe responsible for this pirate interest in Croatia? The tourist board invited Johnny to Dalmatia in August 2012, for its own pirate show. Johnny couldn't make it then, but perhaps this year in combination with a little filming. Check out the highlights of the 2011 Pirates of Omis Battle in the video below - a great event for all the family.

Get to Know Sinj: Free Tourist Day This Friday!

Next Friday, February 21, the tourist board will be hosting its third annual ''Turist u svom gradu''! event (A Tourist in Your Own Town), allowing people to take advantage of their considerable knowledge of the history and attractions of the town.

There will be two tours, one in the morning at 11:00 and the other at 16:00, and you don't have to be a local to take part.

Follow the Sinj Tourist Board on Facebook for the very latest from one of Dalmatia's most fascinating towns. 

Touristar TV Features the Makarska Riviera

Award-winning producer Ashley Colburn is back, and even more in love with Croatia than before!

Winner of an Emmy for her documentary Wow Croatia, Colburn spent time in Central Dalmatia last year with the help of the tourist board, recording for a new series for Touristatr TV.

So grab a coffee, take a seat, and dream of summer in the following video, especially if Makarska is in your heart...

Boston Globe Features Sailing in Central Dalmatia

With its pristine waters, plethora of emerald islands and endless sunshine, it is little wonder that Central Dalmatia is a perfect sailing destination, something that we have known for decades, but has only recently come to the attention of the international media.

The latest paper to feature the joys of a sailing holiday in Central Dalmatia is The Boston Globe, which has published an interesting account of a sailing holiday in the region, under the title Kicking Back on Croatia's Dalmatia Coast, the article features Hvar, Split and Trogir:

SPLIT — From the deck of our boat we watched a spectacle that had everyone in this bustling port city spellbound: a river of sailboats streaming out from the harbor to a sparkling turquoise horizon. Though Croatia had just joined the European Union and marked its 22d year of independence, the talk of the town was of a smaller but perhaps equally telling milestone, the record turnout for the opening day of Yacht Week 2013.

It was a sign of the times. Long a bargain destination offering sun and pebbly beaches to the masses, Croatia is fast evolving into a haven for sophisticated boaters. With modern marinas, a food and wine scene that’s the envy of central Europe, and a charter yachting industry catering to all budgets, it is rapidly whittling market share from more established sailing spots such as Turkey and Greece. Read more...

Friday, February 14, 2014

Adrenaline Dalmatia in January: Skydiving from Sinj

So what is there to do in Dalmatia in the winter if you want to be a little bit active? Plenty!

For the ultimate thrill, why not get airborne and take in the beauty of Central Dalmatia from a height of 4,000 metres, and then skydive to the ground?

Take a look at these pictures from Ante Grubišić Čabo from Sinj to see what is possible. The Sinj Aerodrome, just 30 minutes north of Split, is a great base for activity sports, and on this particular occasion, Ante and his colleagues jumped out of the plane into the clouds, before landing on Stari Grad airfield on Hvar some four kilometres below.

Learn more about skydiving and other adrenaline sports in inland Dalmatia via the Sinj Tourist Board

Discover the Island of Solta: Great New Official Videos

The island of Solta is actually the closest to Split, but is often overlooked by tourists in favour of more 'fashionable' destinations such as Hvar, Brac and Vis. While this is a shame on the one hand (those tourists are missing out on one of Dalmatia's most relaxed destinations), perhaps the lack of mass tourism is not a bad thing, as it keeps life on Solta at a very relaxed tempo.

But what is Solta like for those with an interest to visit? A couple of great new videos from the Solta tourist board should give us a clue.

We begin with Maslinica.

And then head to Gornje Selo. Why not follow the Solta Tourist Board on Facebook for the latest updates?

Fairytale Croatia: Promotional Video from the Croatian National Tourist Board

Croatia - the land of fairytales...

A promotional video from the national tourist board, which heavily features various places in Central Dalmatia. The challenge for you is - how many can you spot?

Head to Dalamtia for a Perfect Honeymoon, Says Leading American Bridal Magazine

We already know just how romantic the Dalmatian islands are, and it is no surprise that the region is experiencing a surge in destination weddings. Why not save on the cost of the actual wedding, while at the same time getting hitched in an idyllic location, and at the same time affording yourselves and your guests the holiday of a lifetime!

It would seem that leading American bridal magazine, owned by Conde Nast since 1959, would agree, for they have named the islands of Brac and Hvar as top honeymoon destinations in their latest issue. 

Croatian Honeymoon Getaways: The Best of Both Worlds - find out what makes these two islands special here. 

Touristar TV Discovers Diocletian

Award-winning producer Ashley Colburn is back, with a new series about Croatia. Colburn, who won an Emmy Award with her Wow Croatia documentary, returned to Croatia last year to produce a new programme for Touristar TV about the country, including a visit to Split.

A tour of Diocletian's Palace below - did you learn something new?

Central Dalmatia Tourist Board Reaches 100,000 Fans: Thank You!

The Central Dalmatia Tourist Board is delighted to announce that it has reached 100,000 Facebook fans!

Thank you for your interest and support. The Facebook page has grown quickly and has been a great platform for us to share the beauty and magic of this special region. We look forward to rewarding our fans with more great photos and information about the region going into the 2014 season. Not a fan yet? Click here to visit the Facebook page

While 100,000 fans is one milestone, the next number to watch is on our Youtube channel, where our four videos are close to 2 million views. The most popular, Hvar Dynamic Postcard, is closing on a million views. Check it out below.

Thank you for your interest and support. 2014 is going to be an exciting season.

5 Things Not to Miss on Eastern Hvar

For many, the island stops at Jelsa. The majority of tourism is concentrated on the western side of the island - Hvar Town, Stari Grad, Jelsa, Vrboska, Ivan Dolac, Zavala - and most people who do venture further east are only doing so to make the ferry at Sucuraj.

This is a shame, as the eastern half of Hvar is arguably even more beautiful, and it certainly has its own treasures for those wanting to explore. Here are five things not to miss.

1. One of the oldest olive trees in the world at Zastrazisce

It was one of the most interesting little excursions of last year - a trip east to find the oldest olive tree on Hvar. To be honest I was not expecting much, but decided to check it out in combination with some other things on the eastern side, but I was soon standing back in awe. To give you a feeling of how impressive this majestic tree is, I asked my daughter to climb into the middle of it. The tree is now protected, and some Italian specialists have dated it at 500 years before Christ, which a quick check of the Internet will tell you it is one of the ten oldest olive trees in the world. Whatever its age, it is magnificent. Not that easy to find, though, and you will have to ask in the village of Zastrazisce.

2. The fabulous Gdinj bays

Living in Jelsa, we are a little spoiled for choice with beaches, but one thing that eastern Hvar has in abundance is great beaches and, because most people choose to stay on the western side, they are much more deserted. One fabulous place to check out is the so-called Gdinj Bays, on the southern side of the island - turn right by the church coming from Jelsa, and prepare for a hairy and winding descent - and you are soon presented with a string of fabulous beaches in small bays, most with a bar or restaurant. Check out more info here

3. The largest island vineyard in the Mediterranean

Plancic vineyard on eastern Hvar from the air

I drove along the road to Sucuraj for years without knowing about the secret on top of the island - the largest single vineyard on the Adriatic islands, some 261 hectares in all once planted. About 10% is currently under cultivation, but to give you an idea of the impact it could make on the Hvar wine scene, the island used to have 5700 hectares under cultivation, but these days it is just 280, so once this vineyard is fully planted, it will almost double production on Hvar. 
It is an impressive 4.7 km long, and an incredible amount of work has gone into it crushing stones. It belongs to the Plancic winery in Vrbanj.

4. Croatia's premier eco-ethno village

There is much talk these days about developing eco-ethno tourist attractions, and nowhere in Dalmatia has more treasures in this department than Hvar. Top of the list is the magical shepherd's village of Humac, just 6km east of Jelsa. Totally abandoned and fully protected as an eco-ethno village, there are few places with more atmosphere or clues of life in Dalmatia in years gone by. The excellent Konoba Humac at the front of the village is one of the best dining experiences on the island, while it is possible to stay in the village. No running water or electricity here, but there are tours to the outstanding Neolithic Cave of Grapceva - check it out here

5. The magical Stinivas

The most bizarre road on the island is located on the edge of Poljica. Take the turn north to Mala Stiniva and eventually you will come to a fork. Turn right and it leads nowhere, ending abruptly above a bay you have to scramble down to reach. Turn left and it stops high above another bay with a small settlement with no car access. Mala Stiniva, one of the most picturesque places on the island. 

Continue along the main road past Poljica to Zastrazisce, and another left turn brings you to the impressive Vela Stiniva, with its impressive and imposing cliffs, cliffs which have made it one of the most popular places for rock climbing on Hvar. For more information about climbing.

Beach of the Week: Looking for a Sandy Beach Near Hvar

It may be a little cold for most of us to swim, but there is nothing wrong with dreaming of the summer during a cold winter. With so many quality beaches around, it is never to early to start thinking of those lazy days in the sun. So welcome to Beach of the Week, where we will be highlighting some of the top - and some of the hidden - beaches of Dalmatia. And we start with what many people seek, but few find - a sandy beach near Hvar Town.

The Pakleni Islands opposite Hvar Town look very inviting, and many tourists head out on the numerous water taxis to spend a day at the beach. There is plenty to choose from, including CNN's top naturist beach for 2011 at Jerolim, and the popular bay of Palmižana.

While many of the beaches on Hvar are rocky or consist of small pebbles, there are a few sandy beaches to seek out if that is your preference. One of them is called Perna in the next bay round from Palmižana, reached by water taxi. We could spend words describing it, but why bother when the Hvar Town Tourist Board do such a good job in pictures... 

Game of Thrones Trailer Released: Dalmatia as You Have Never Seen It

The 2014 season in Central Dalmatia is expected to have a new type of tourist - fans of the hit series Game of Thrones, whose fourth season will air this April. If the knock-on effect on tourism in Dubrovnik in the last series is anything to go by, there will be more than a few fans looking to visit the locations where the series was filmed.

Filming in Croatia last year took place in various locations in the region - Diocletian's Palace in Split, Klis Fortress, Zrnovnica Quarry and Dubrovnik. An official trailer has been released (see below), and here are some screenshots of some familiar places. Do you recognise them? 





Diocletian's Palace, Split 


Zrnovnica Quarry


Here is the trailer

A Journey on the New Stretch of Motorway Through Central Dalmatia

Road Testing the New Motorway Through the Heart of Inland Dalmatia
The latest stretch of the motorway planned from Zagreb to Dubrovnik opened recently, finally linking Dalmatia with the coast at Ploce. It was time to explore the unknown in what was bound to show some new aspects of Central Dalmatia.
And so it proved in what was quite an interesting journey.
As one would expect on a new motorway early on a Sunday morning in January, the road was both pristine and totally empty. There were hardly any other vehicles in either direction, giving me a chance to stop and take some pictures. It was an odd contrast, driving through deserted parts of the hinterland, with the most modern of roads taking me along that journey.
Careful consideration has been given to the wildlife, with lots of signs pointing out the 'Green Bridges' - paths for the wild animals of the region to cross. A reminder that inland Dalmatia is one of the country's prime hunting destinations, and perhaps giving an unfair advantage to the hunters...
It was exciting to see the towns of Inland Dalmatia come into view - here is Vrgorac for example. Once off the beaten track, now totally accessible. The signage was good - the turn to Imotski also had signs for the must-see attractions of the Blue and Red Lakes.
And after a little consideration, I concluded that this must be the stretch of motorway that Volvo used when filming that incredible promo video near Vrgorac. Check it out here
With the lack of traffic, there was plenty of time to admire the stunning mountain scenery. The journey was instructive, a sign of how much inland Dalmatia is now accessible. All that remains is to tell people about what they can find there!
But for people travelling from Zagreb to Peljesac, for example, this new stretch is fantastic news - less than 500 kilometres to the ferry at Ploce and then to Trpanj. I turned off for Metkovic, 48 kuna poorer but a little wiser and a lot more relaxed that I would otherwise have been. And as I turned, I saw some gleaming motorway signs for Mostar and Sarajevo off in the distance. A taster of what could be... And how many more fabulous hidden gems would then be available for exploring?