Korean Tourism Surge in Croatia, Zagreb Embassy the Busiest in Europe

Total Croatia News

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An unlikely tale of a massive tourism hit between Croatia and South Korea, inspired by reality television shows.

After yet another bumper tourism season in Croatia, there is time for analysis of trends, and one thing is absolutely clear – THE hit story of the last couple of years has been the rise of tourism from the Republic of Korea, whose tourists have been discovering the Adriatic tourism paradise in droves this year, reports the Korean English newpaper Chosunilbo on December 13, 2015.

According to the report, some 316,566 Korean tourists visited Croatia in the first ten months of the year, an increase over the 263,756 who visited in 2014, which in itself was a threefold increase of 74,001 in 2013. The number of tourists just a few years ago was as little as 10,000 a year, and the Korean Embassy in Zagreb expects this year’s number to pass 350,000, with significant end of year arrivals.

As we reported for Google News three years ago, the reason for the spectacular rise in popularity of Croatia among Koreans is due to the enormous influence of reality television shows about Croatia, including The Romantic (see video below). A combination of using famous Koreans touring Croatia and showcasing the country’s stunning beauty has led to hundreds of thousands booking their flights to Zagreb.

So successful has the Korean invasion been that the Republic of Korea is now the number one long-distance inbound country for Croatian tourism, and 12th overall. In an interview with Total Croatia News earlier this year, Korea’s Zagreb ambassador His Excellency Hyung-won Suh spoke about plans for Korean Air to establish a direct connection between the two capital cities, while the Croatian National Tourist Board announced plans to open an office in Seoul

Chosunilbo writes that the Zagreb mission has become the busiest Korean embassy in Europe, as its staff work to deal with the needs of the increasing number of visitors, but away from the tourism scene, the embassy has been working with considerable success to foster business relations between the two countries, and at the recent first anniversary of the very active Croatian – Korean business club (an event attended by Total Croatia News), there was plenty of evidence of sucessful cooperation between the two countries at a business level, with more and more Croatian companies testing the water in the Korean market.




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