The conference on nautical tourism and island sustainability in Milna offered an answer to the question of how to reconcile numbers and sustainability


17. June 2024.

With 86 marinas and 220 nautical tourism ports, Croatia is at the top of the world in nautical tourism. Last year, we were visited by 585.000 charter guests, who made almost 4 million, large tourist numbers require large investments.

All true lovers of nautical tourism wished they had been in the premises on the morning of June 13 Interpretation center of the maritime history of Milna. Namely, on that day there was a brisk presentation and debate on the subject of nautical tourism, sustainability, maritime heritage and green transition, and speakers arrived - from all relevant sectors important for its development. The real ones gathered at the conference pearls nautical tourism islands: Brač, Vis, Hvar and Šolta.

"The Maritime History Center of Milna, where we are located, is actually the forerunner of nautical tourism. In the former places where ships and sailing ships were built, today there are marinas. That is why it is very important to talk about the preservation of the sea at this conference, so that the next generations could inherit in some other way", pointed out the director of the Milna Municipality Tourist Board, Ana Grassi.

The importance of preserving the environment and sustainability seems to be self-evident outfit in shades of green, our esteemed panellist, head of the Administrative Department for Tourism, Maritime Affairs and Transport, wanted to emphasize, Matea Dorčić.

"This is an excellent opportunity to remind ourselves of the successful cooperation between Split-Dalmatia County and the Municipality of Milna, always focusing on balanced regional development and the necessity of developing smart and sustainable islands. In the last two years, it was our pleasure and honor to support over 660.000 euros the project of reconstruction of the wall and extension of the coast in the area of ​​Racić in Milna, so this is an opportunity for us to see on the spot what we have invested in", proudly pointed out the head of the Administrative Department for Tourism, Maritime Affairs and Transport of the Split-Dalmatia County, Matea Dorčić, announcing new projects and collaborations, such as the one between the Municipality of Milna, the Municipality of Sutivan and the Split-Dalmatia County, for which the amount of grants of over 2 million and 400 thousand euros is expected.

The introductory part was perfectly rounded off by the director of the Split-Dalmatia County Tourist Board, Ivana Vladović.

"The experiences we have here, in slang terms, it is nowhere in the world. Let's not fight for tourist numbers - let's fight for experiences, let's fight for beauty, and for the future of those to whom we leave it! The goal of the Split-Dalmatia County is to brand our way of life, to show Dalmatia as it is in its prime. 365 days a year it's nice to live here, 365 days a year we have excellent gastronomy, culture, history is everywhere, our magical sea is still safe even in the most infidelities. We are connected with 23 airlines throughout the year. I am happy to be here today among the islanders, in Milna, which tells a wonderful nautical story, a place that has preserved generations through fishing and shipbuilding."

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At the conference, two panel discussions were held on the topic of sustainable islands, green transition, renewable energy sources, transport connections, European funds and support... and examples of positive practice in nautical tourism were presented.

"Milna has been building its nautical story for decades, the common goal of all of us who are involved in tourism, the people of Milna and everyone who comes here is to think about sustainability, and how to improve our tourism so that our guests will come back again. At today's conference, we discussed how to protect our resources, how to reconcile numbers and sustainability, Milna is the nautical center of Brač, it is up to us who lead the local government units to determine the directions of tourism of Austria-Hungary, Emperor Francis Joseph, I am especially proud that the new waterfront has kept the old flair, we implemented the old covers in the newly reconstructed waterfront", said the chief Fran Lozic.

"The city of Hvar is fighting against mass tourism, just like other attractive Croatian tourist centers. Every year we are asked to increase tourist traffic by 10%, and sustainability and numbers do not go together. We need to preserve our heritage, build and invest in infrastructure, so that first for the local population to be comfortable for life, so that our guests could also enjoy these beauties", said the mayor of Hvar Ricardo Novak.

"The port upgrade project, the construction of a 420-meter-long operational waterfront, should be finished in 15 days. It is an investment worth more than 2 million euros, and upon completion of the project, Milna will receive 50 new nautical berths, 50 utility berths, followed by construction the third phase of the port in Milna, where 205 communal berths will be arranged", announced the director of the county port administration Domagoj Maroević.

"The largest solar power plant on the Adriatic was built on Vis, which enables the island of Vis to be energy independent for 60% of the year. We are starting with additional investments in the green transition, with the application of green hydrogen, the production of ethanol from waste. Vis as one of the largest nautical destinations on the Adriatic along with energy independence, own water sources, investments in port infrastructure, arrangement of additional communal moorings, and the crown of the project - a new nautical port open to public traffic, will improve the demographic image of the place", emphasized the mayor of Vis Ivo Radica.

 Ecology and sustainability are our commitment

"The plan on the management of ports and anchorages of the Split-Dalmatia County is an opportunity to protect our most valuable resource - the sea and the coast - in the long term. The plan for the layout of the nautical anchorages of the Split-Dalmatia County serves as a basic document in the call for submission of requests for the creation of spatial plans for the development of cities and The county administrative department for tourism, maritime affairs and transport will provide cities and municipalities with data on the number of nautical anchorages, the location, and the maximum capacity of anchorages in their area issuing concessions for the economic use of nautical anchorages cannot be changed", added Matea Dorčić.

"In the foreseeable future, the North Port should solve the problem of separating passenger and transport traffic. This year we also introduced new lines, strengthened the fleet, as of March 23, 12 lines already sail to Supetar. The need for new lines is an indicator of how the islands are developing, so the islanders' needs for delivery are increasing. Last year, Jadrolinija transported 12 million passengers. This is an exceptional effort for our fleet, our seafarers, we do our best to ensure that passengers and drivers arrive at their destination quickly and safely.", she said Jelena Ivulić, regional manager of Jadrolinija.

6 million passengers passed through the port of Split last year, and new records are expected this year, so the question arises, what about the infrastructure and whether new records can be set.

"The increase in the number of tourists implies the need to invest in port infrastructure. We expect an increase in traffic this year as well, despite the fact that ports are mostly built with European Union funds, a large number of ports are limited by transport infrastructure, the solution lies with local self-government units and the need to adapt spatial plans.", she said Paula Vidović, director of the Coastal Line Maritime Transport Agency.

"Solta is connected to Split by six ferries and catamaran lines per day, which is satisfactory, we are poorly connected to other islands, and with the construction of the harbor in Stomorska, we hope that preconditions will be created for this as well. In the past year, we have had a 33% increase in the number of newborns, which is also an indication that Šolta is a desirable place for young families to live, and that is our greatest success. With the new spatial plan, we want to encourage investments in nautical tourism and limit apartment building waste at sea is a big problem", he explained Mayor of Šolta Municipality Nikola Cecić Karuzić.

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"Branding and investment in Sutivan as a family and bike-friendly destination was reflected in the extension of the pre- and post-season. Our plan is to stop the further increase in tourist traffic in the main season. In July and August, 6000 people stay in Sutivan per day, and we have more apartments than residents We started the deapartmentization project in 2017, when we banned the construction of apartment buildings, although we planned new tourist zones in the spatial plan, we do not want to encourage the construction of hotel complexes where there will be no one to work.", said the mayor of Sutivan Municipality Ranko Blažević.

"Guests stay in Milna for an average of 7,5 days, the newly opened Milna Maritime Heritage Center is exactly the story for our sailors to bring our heritage, tradition, history, and thematic trails closer to them. The Tourist Board, in cooperation with the Municipality, is investing in digital content for of the new generation, our "photo points" are increasingly popular, and we are also represented through social networks. In collaboration with FLAG Brač, we launched a strategy and applied for EU projects, last year we did three projects financed in the amount of XNUMX% EU funds., she said Anna Grassi, director of the tourist community of the municipality of Milna

"Since this year, we have also introduced a direct line to Jelsa. There are more and more individual guests who want to visit as much as possible in one day. They want to visit Hvar, Brač, Šolta, Vis... they want to swim on our islands and then return back to Split. With the increase in the number of lines and fast ships, that is possible." he said Jure Naranča, owner of Krilo shipping company doo

Photo: Gabrić Media


17. June 2024.