Archaeological Park Iovia – Ludbreg Officially Opens!

Total Croatia News

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Ludbrg Mayor Dubravko Bilic
Ludbrg Mayor Dubravko Bilic

First, the news of the opening of the new archeological park Iovia – Ludbreg on Monday:

Podravski reports that the museum was opened by the Minister of Culture and Media, Ph.D. Nina Obuljen Koržinek with the mayor of Ludbreg Dubravko Bilić and the director of the restoration institute and honorary Ludbreg citizen, doctor of science Tajana Pleše.


“It is not every day that archeological sites are opened, arranged, researched, and presented in this way, organized according to all international standards, and look how archeological parks should be developed and managed. This locality and other projects funded by the European Union have an important tourist component. When the pandemic situation calms down, this will certainly be one reason for visitors to come to Ludbreg. It is a real pleasure to witness an event like this at this time, and I believe that today’s opening is an encouraging announcement of returning to life as we knew it before the pandemic,” said Minister Obuljen Koržinek at the opening and thanked everyone who participated in the project.

The mayor of Ludbreg, Dubravko Bilić, said that Ludbreg is a city that is recognized for using European funds. The archeological park project is one of the most important city projects.

“This project was for us the first large registered project that turned Ludbreg into a city of European projects. I remember how much effort and time was put in by everyone who worked on the application to finally submit the application on the last day and thus knock on Europe’s door. Fortunately, the project was approved and received 14.3 million kuna in grants, while the rest came from the Ministry of Regional Development and the City of Ludbreg. In the end, the value will be close to 19 million kuna. The importance of the project is, on the other hand, invaluable because it activates all our potentials in tourism and the economy and presents Ludbreg as a rich place where visitors have something to see,” said Mayor Bilić in part of his address and thanked everyone who helped implement the project.

The director of the restoration institute and honorary citizen of Ludbreg, doctor of science Tajana Pleše, also addressed the audience, emphasizing in an emotional speech that such parks are extremely rare and that it is a great honor to be a part of it.


As the presentations continued, I took a step back to take some pictures, and I was struck by just how much of interest there is in this unusual town. I have been mildly fascinated with Ludbreg since my first visit back in 2016 when I wrote Ludbreg, the Most Fascinating, Unusual Little Town in Croatia? And every visit brings something new, in this case the opening of Archeological Park Iovia. 

Here, in just a few square metres, in a quiet destination not known for tourism, we can see the Centre of the World, the church which houses the only certified miracle in Croatia, a monument to local javelin heroine, Sara Kolak, who won Olympic Gold in Rio in 2016, and the newly opened museum and park. 


As most destinations are tightening their belts, Ludbreg’s chiefs are investing to improve both the town and the tourism offer. It was great to catch up with the King of Straw, as he put the finishing touches to his straw model of Ludbreg’s oldest lady, Erika the rhino. 

Marc Rowlands’ feature story yesterday on the rise of active tourism in and around Ludbreg shows that tourism is very much alive in this part of continental Croatia.


I really liked the layout of the three-storey museum in front of the park. The top floor will be great for workshops.


And a new conference facility in the basement. 


As for the exhibition itself, it was perfectly presented, even if some of the exhibits made me feel empathy after all my recent stress and travel. 


Three clear timelines, side by side – Croatia, the world, and Ludbreg. While the exhibition on the wall is in Croatia, it is available in several languages via multimedia. 

A great addition to an already interesting town, which you can get to know in more detail with our One Minute Ludbreg series, in association with the Ludbreg Tourist Board, starting with the story of that miracle.

To learn more about Ludbreg, visit the dedicated TCN section.

For more, follow Made in Croatia.


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