Croatia all set for a big year

Zagreb has impressive 18th century architecture

Combined with more investment and business travel growth, as well as award winning destinations, new hotels, Michelin starred restaurants and diverse landscapes; Croatia continues to grow as a destination every year.

The country will display the cities of Rijeka and Zagreb this WTM London: Rijeka, a beacon for tourists in the Kvarner Gulf, will be the Culture Capital of Europe in 2020, while Zagreb offers events, festivals and attractions all year round.

After receiving the highly coveted title of Culture Capital of Europe from the EU, Rijeka expects to be catapulted into the limelight and welcome over one million visitors in 2020. Rijeka is just part of the extremely diverse Primorje-Gorski Kotar County, which boasts beautiful coastline, cities, and villages.

A historical yacht, transformed into a museum, the famous promenade of Molo Longo, and the historic Shrine of Our Lady of Trsat, dominate the city of Rijeka itself.

There is a chance to escape to nature in nearby Opatija too, which is nestled under Mount Ucka and part of Croatia’s 10 Nature Parks. Today, Opatija is experiencing a revival due to the wellness and spa facilities, which are located there. Adding to the towns appeal is the Congressional Centre that encompasses 53 Conference Halls, which can house 9,563 spectators.

Zagreb meanwhile, is Croatia’s cultural metropolis. 2020 will be an exciting year for the city as the country takes its turn to be the seat of the EU presidency. It is also competing for the title of European Green Capital, making the coming year one of great excitement for the country’s capital.

This winter is a great time to visit as Zagreb Christmas Market was been awarded the title of Best Christmas Market in Europe for the third time. The city is just 2.5 hours away from London Heathrow, with direct air links all year round, and now boasts six new luxury hotels and a packed schedule of winter fun for tourists. This winter, the city intends to break its record of 127,000 visitors for December.

Coastal Croatia has plenty of appeal in winter too, with direct flights from London Gatwick to most of Croatian destinations frequented by British visitors. Buzzing Dubrovnik, the world-famous Unesco World Heritage site, guarantees plenty of sun and a chance to rub shoulders with celebrities in the bustling 6th Century Old Town. The newly refurbished Hotel Bellevue, carved into a cliff-side, offers floor-to-ceiling windows revealing the glistening Adriatic Sea to visitors too.

* Learn more about Croatia on stand EU1200