Friday, January 29, 2016

Croatia Online Inspires One Of Croatia’s Best Native Bloggers!

Secret Dalmatia

It was with considerable delight that, following a tip off from our great friends Diane and Roger, we discovered ourselves credited as the inspiration for one of THE very best blogs on Croatia. We’ve known Alan Mandić for many years and had some of our best trips to undiscovered places with him. If anyone knows the real secrets of Dalmatia, Alan does, and he has that rare combination of local knowledge, national pride and international savvy that makes what he offers to visitors, and what he does to promote all that is best about Croatia, quite exceptional. So we forgive him for drawing attention to the fact that this blog has been a little quiet recently.

Winking smile

In fact the wake up call is a couple of months too late as one of our resolutions for 2016 is to make Croatia top priority again so expect to hear a lot more from us now!

Read the interview with Alan Mandić here: Total Croatia News Meets The Bloggers Of Croatia

And below are links to some of Croatia Online’s favourite postings featuring Secret Dalmatia when Alan  was just an embryo blogger, if that! Bear in mind that these are the original posts and contact information for some of the venues may have changed.

Croatia Online - A Day Out With Secret Dalmatia

Croatia Online - Caves and Caving

Croatia Online - Bibich Winery, Skradin

Croatia Online Discovers Secret Dalmatia

Today’s photo is of some Roman ruins that were, at the time, hidden away from almost everyone except Alan!

Monday, January 25, 2016

Learn The Croatian Language!

Croatia Online Rab Sign

If you are a little slow making your resolutions this year but are already yearning for a trip to Croatia, why not learn the language and get so much more out of  your visit?

Yes, Croatians know they can not expect many of their tourists to speak the lingo and yes, menus and signs are often in English, German, and perhaps Italian and French as well, but there will be times when you may really wish you’d done a little more homework…. for example when  that very special location eludes you because you did not know what the sign said.

First of all the good news: Croatian pronunciation is very phonetic and regular, so once you know how to pronounce each letter you can make words understood. Also good, in a way, is the fact that most Croatians speak English so they can help you (but tend to prefer practicing their English rather than letting you hone your skills). The challenge is that there are 6 declensions of each verb and three genders so you may have up to 18 different endings of a verb. And don’t believe the locals when they say the ending does not matter as they will be very quick to correct you!  There are some words similar to French and a very few where you could say the English word and be ok but, like anything worth doing, you’re going to need to put some time in. So maybe think of accelerating your progress by having some lessons from a professional?

We’ve known Linda Rabuzin, owner of The Croatian Language School (CLS), for years.  Based in west London, CLS was established in 1997, long before quite a few of our compatriots could place Croatia on the world map and certainly before it was properly discovered. CLS works with corporate and private students, from complete beginner to advanced, including providing tailor-made training programmes if required.

Better still, why not combine a visit to your favourite holiday destination with a language course? This year Linda is taking her students to north Croatia, near Zadar. Over a week you’ll have 12 hours of tuition, spread over 4 days, and the option to join in an amazing programme of excursions where of course you can practice some more.

Follow this link - CLS - Zadar Croatian Language Course 2016 - to find out more about the opportunity, not only to learn the language from a native and expert teacher, but also to get a real “local’s” insight into the culture, sights and sounds of this incredible, rapidly up and coming, and often overlooked, part of Croatia.