"I'm Pierre. With this song we greeted our first guests after the war”Begins his monologue Pjerin Jugović, a proud resident of Bol on Brač, playing a song on the guitar with which they welcomed their guests with joy and kindness long ago. At the end of the video, Mr. Pierre invites everyone to come to Bol.
A lot of time has passed from the war until today, and we have unfortunately figuratively, looking at all our tourism, stopped greeting our guests with sincere kindness and singing songs to them with pride, not because we have to, in the context of some theater play or animation, but because we what we are. Because it is our way and culture of living.
The video is part of the new campaign of the Tourist Board of Bol - Our pain stories, which consists of six short video stories, real and living human stories, not actors, in which Bolke and Boljani invite their guests to Bol.
"The aim of this project is to involve the local population and their active participation in the promotion of their place. It is important that visitors meet the people who care for them. I think that’s a winning formula, because who better to tell our stories than them right? In this way, Bolka and Boljani were given the opportunity to actively participate with their proposals and engagement in the joint promotion of our Bol.. ” said the director of the Tourist Board of Bol, Markito Marinkovic, and gave the right and only formula or definition of tourism.
Tourism as it should be and as it always should be.
As every crisis and opportunity, this is an opportunity for a new tourism paradigm, new sustainable and healthy foundations, redefinition of the tourism product, rebranding and repositioning. Now it's time to reset.
And that’s exactly why we need to go back to the basics and roots in our tourism story. We have to tell our story, an authentic story. We need to develop tourism for our own sake, not a priori because of tourists.
In our path of tourism development, we have lost touch with ourselves. We ran for quick and easy earnings, especially from rent, we ran for numbers, waved our hand at all warnings, and worst of all, we lost our identity. We built concrete monsters, bigger and wider, and at the same time we lost our most valuable resource - space and identity.
Under the prism of satisfying tourists, we have forgotten the tradition. We have lost ourselves, we have lost our soul. We lost our city, our destinations. Instead of producing vegetables and food from our field, we imported. Instead of catching our fish, we offered frozen squid from Patagonia. Instead of homemade and organic olive oil, honey, wine, natural juices, souvenirs - we pretended to be Chinese. For the end, figuratively, but true, instead of singing our songs, we sang and acted Mexican Mariachi.
We were constantly running away from ourselves and wanted to be copies of others, striving for standardization. We must ask ourselves the question: Who are we and what are we? What do we sell as our tourism product? For whom?
Tourism is not an end in itself if it does not directly raise the quality of life of the local population and the local economy - it is a lesson we have, I hope, learned.
And precisely because of this, this new one pain story gives hope and a guide on how to start over. Let’s turn to ourselves, let’s turn to man. Because it is man who makes tourism alive.
Our pain stories
You can find out which organic vegetables you can try in Bol on Brač, where to find home-made goat products, in which restaurant to enjoy a local dish with wild herbs, from which fishermen try fresh freshly caught fish, whose melodious guitar you can dream of and where to find extra virgin olive oil. in a new project of the Tourist Board of the Municipality of Bol entitled: Our pain stories.
In order to emphasize the togetherness, support and importance of local residents, whose DNA includes tourism, the Tourist Board gathered local people living for and from their country or sea, to send to their guests, but also to all future visitors to this picturesque place in the south. of the island of Brač, a simple message - See you in Bol!
The focus of the project is primarily local caterers, small producers, renters and small hoteliers, who are currently going through a whole range of emotions, from fear and uncertainty to optimism and hope for a better tomorrow.
The key message of this campaign is the importance of togetherness, because without it there is no authentic experience, which Bolke and Boljani are happy to share. Their wish is for guests to recognize them and hear stories from them first hand, which they cannot read in any magazine, discover fantastic flavors of home-made food and products, learn something about wild plants and truly experience this little place in all its beauty.
In videos and photos, perfectly imperfect, Franci Marinković from the restaurant Pusa shared his story. In addition to top-quality dishes with wild herbs, he always enchants his guests with a good song. Meri Bodlović and her husband have been engaged in organic farming, olive growing and viticulture on their family farm for ten years. Breeding, production and catering were excellently connected by Mirjan and mother Irena, and their specialty, Cheese in sugar, of goat's milk can be tasted in their tavern Dišpet. Nikica Bodlović from the family farm of the same name talks about olives and the family olive grove, proud of 250 olive trees and golden drops of extra virgin olive oil. Professional fisherman Pravdan Katić shared his 15-year fishing enthusiasm with us, and as Boljani used to invite tourists, Pjerin Jugović sang to us, to the sounds of his favorite guitar.
The campaign is not just this video, it is just the beginning of the story - the Bol story
This is just the beginning of the story of the Tourist Board of Bol, which in the coming months will spread positive local experiences and represent its locals on social media, IG and FB profile.
"The emphasis of the project is on the involvement of the local community and its authenticity, that is, we believe that the locals who live for their small town can best present what they offer and what they live for. In addition, in this way they do not remain "anonymous" but we want when tourists come to remember that it is the caterer with super risotto or the woman who offers organic products."Marinkovic points out and adds that communication on social networks will be accompanied by extensions depending on the thematic posts - symBOLoftradition, symBOLoffamily, symBOLof localfood, symBOLofhistory.
Let's be what we are - that's what tourists want to know and experience
It is not a shame to admit a mistake. Rather, we must admit that we were wrong and be aware of it. This is the first step, to become aware and only in this way can we start from scratch to build the foundations of our tourism through sustainable, responsible and strategic development.
In order for the story to be true and complete, we really have to live our culture and way of life, not pretend to be tourists. We must be proud. Tourists must not be just a number, just a room - but a person with a name and surname. The motive of travel is precisely the new way and culture of living, and that is why authenticity is the very essence of tourism. This global diversity is the main fuel for travel, it creates uniqueness and all the charms of tourism.
I hope we have learned a lesson, how tourism is not an end in itself, if it does not directly raise the quality of life of the local population and the local economy.
Let's be like Pjerin, let's be like Nikica and Pravdan, let's be like Mirjan, Mary and Franci. Let's be what we are - Croats. It must be our main tourist product.
Let us be what we are - it must be our main tourist product. Well done for Bol and Bol stories. It is this fish, wine, vegetables, meat, olive oil, cheese - it's a luxury. This is what tourists want to see, taste and experience. This is how everyone lives from tourism, quality and sustainable, this is how tourist spending goes down to the local economy. Don’t be too smart, let’s just look at our neighbors in Tuscany and Austria as well Proof of concept.
I sincerely hope that this is just a small but big step forward, in a new Bol, and thus Brač, tourist story and paradigm.
Bravo Bol. This is the kind of tourism we have to build.