Crystal clear and clean seas, preserved nature, cultural heritage and delicious cuisine are the four aces that make Croatia a tourism hot spot. But, with trends changing in favour of modern cities and tech-developed places that can attract attention year-round, can Croatia (which always struggled outside of summer months) keep up?
This was the burning question at the third edition of ‘Can Croatian tourism 365?’ conference, which this year placed a special accent on creativity and new technologies. Nine international and local experts, which included representatives of leading global tourism industries such as Bruno Walter from ITB Advisory, and James Chappell from Horwath HTL, gathered in Zagreb’s Sheraton Hotel to address, discuss and offer solutions in making year-round tourism a reality.
‘The challenge is to find hidden treasures and champions in Croatia and combine them with experience and the individuality travellers search for today’, said Bruno Walter. He added that this may not be easy, but it will be rewarding. Not only for creating year-round tourism but to reduce over-tourism as well, which will allow the travel experience to be more pleasant for visitors.
James Chappell concluded from his personal experience as a tourist in Croatia that the country is beautiful and full of potential, but the biggest challenge standing in the way is finding investments and fullfiling investors expectations. ‘Destinations need to have an infrastructure to handle year-round tourism such as airlines, accommodation and constant promotions. It all needs to be financed and comes with a certain risk.’
Panels covered everything, from observing the most successful examples like the seductive architecture of industrial, yet beautiful Spanish city Bilbao and its Guggenheim Museum,
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