After ten years, Dorian Božičević, Secretary-General of the Croatian Astronomical Union, visited Lastovo again. Together with Diana Magdić, Deputy Director of the Lastovo Tourist Board, at whose invitation he arrived, they visited potentially interesting Lastovo locations for astronomical observations and the installation of cameras to monitor Croatian, i.e., the Global Meteor Network’s meteors.
Lastovo – Croatia’s next dark sky park?
For Lastovo to apply for the International Dark Sky Park status, they agreed on further cooperation to start measuring the night sky quality. Besides, they decided to organize astronomy activities for citizens, tourists, and children.
Winter sky over Prgovo / Dorian Božičević, Lastovo Tourist Board
By official definition, the dark sky park label is awarded to protected nature areas with extremely dark skies full of stars. Two places in Croatia hold this label – Petrova Gora in Banovina and Vrani Kamen on Papuk. Also, Jelsa on Hvar is well on its way to becoming the third dark sky park in Croatia, and it seems like Lastovo could potentially be the fourth.
Božičević and Magdić hope for the cooperation of all institutions on the island so that the project “Lastovo Island of Stars” really comes to life. They also plan to hold a meeting with the Lastovo Islands Nature Park’s representatives and the Municipality of Lastovo.
Dorian Božičević and Diana Magdić with a rotating map of the sky in Lastovo / Croatian Astronomical Union
Their goal is to bring astronomy to life in Lastovo’s tourist offer and to ensure continuous extracurricular activities in astronomy for children and youth.
First Croatian municipality with ecological lighting
The Croatian Astronomical Union recalled that from 2008 to 2010, the International Conference on Dark Sky Parks had been held in Lastovo. However, due to a lack of financial resources and some other circumstances, the project stalled with development.
At that time, Lastovo began the reconstruction of public lighting. Little is known that Lastovo was the first local government in Croatia with completely ecological lighting, even before the adoption of regulations on protection against light pollution.
Lastovo / Romulić and Stojčić
In 2010, a workshop in astronomy for elementary school students was organized on Lastovo. Then, the initiative for the establishment of the astronomical society Lastovo was also launched, as well as the initiation of the International Dark Sky Park proclamation.
Stargazing as a symbol of Lastovo
Lastovo is the most distant inhabited Croatian island, and thanks to the distance from the mainland and pollution, stargazing here leaves you breathless.
The town of Lastovo, also the only settlement on the Lastovo island, is an old medieval settlement rich in history. Hills surround it with amazing views of the surrounding fields and the crystal clear sea. In addition to the dark Lastovo sky, the symbol of Lastovo are the richly decorated chimneys, the so-called “fumari,” which adorn Lastovo’s family houses from the 15th and 16th centuries.
Lastovo’s chimney – “fumar” / Romulić and Stojčić
The town of Lastovo / Romulić and Stojčić