March 28, 2019 – Putting Croatian adventure tourism on the map, with the biggest welcome in the world. A little kayaking kicks off this incredible journey of adrenaline tourism along the Croatian coast.
It is 8 years since one of the finest tourism promotion ideas I have come across in my 17 years in Croatia took place.
An idea to celebrate the extraordinary potential of adventure tourism the length and breadth of the Croatian coast. As TCN explained in the introductory article yesterday, Daniel Lacko and his team’s vision was to create a route which mapped out on GPS the world Welcome from Savudrija on the border with Slovenia, to Dubrovnik in the south, to showcase the different types of sporting challenge that could be enjoyed in this hospitable tourist nation.
As I said in my article yesterday, I had only just started writing online when the event took place, and I hadn’t fully appreciated the level of achievement until now. Looking back at the media coverage, there was very little in English, and I thought it would be an opportunity to take a closer look at the potential of Croatia as an adventure tourism destination, through a day by day look at Daniel’s incredible journey.
First, the formalities of the press conference to launch the event.
And then it was time to prepare for the 50-plus days ahead, with some 2,500 km to cover with a variety of disciplines.
Lacko started in the very north of the Croatian coast, in Savudrija, perhaps better known recently for the fishing dispute in the Piran Bay. But back in 2011, it was the enthusiastic singing of the local kindergarten which got him started on his incredible journey.
Kayak in the water, the journey had begun!
Hugging the Istrian coastline, a visit to Novigrad.
And a kayaking boy must eat. Time for lunch.
The first say was a ‘leisurely’ 35 kilometre kayak paddle from Savudrija to Porec, home to one of Croatia’s 11 UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
And a sunset to match the achievements of the day, one of many such sunsets which lay ahead, as the early April weather welcomed the World’s Biggest Welcome to the Adriatic.
Day 1 of 52 – the distance and locations covered.
A key element of the project was tourist promotion, and the excellent Welcome website provides (and still provides) information of the main points of interest en route. On the first day, Savudrija and Porec.
Tune in for more kayaking exploits tomorrow, as Lacko negotiates 45 km from Porec to Rovinj to the magical Brijuni islands.