It has been a year-long since the first confirmed case of coronavirus in Croatia.
Although the pandemic is still active, we are starting to think about life in the post-pandemic period, and how will it affect society.
Here are a few thoughts about the post-pandemic situation in Croatia, and it's long term effects on tourism.
Focus on traditional values in tourism
All until 10 years ago, it was a rare occasion to notice British, French or American visitor in Croatia. Only the places like Dubrovnik, which has been globally popular ever since, attracted visitors from those countries.
Most of the tourists in Croatia were from the Middle European countries like the Czech Republic, Slovenia, and Poland.
But then Croatia entered the European Union and it became widely popular on the western tourist market. Things like Ultra Europe festival in Split and Game of Thrones completely change the identity of Croatia as a tourist destination. It became one of the top tourist spots for young visitors from the western world.
I believe the coronavirus is going to slightly revert this process in the next few years; Ultra will not be that relevant because of the pandemic and lack of music production, and there is no film production which would inherit GoT. Therefore, young western visitors will not be that motivated for a visit to Croatia; they are probably going to focus more on a local tourist experience.
The type of visitors which will arrive in Croatia in the next few years will be more sort of individuals, who have a desire to explore cultural or natural attractions. Of course, they will be followed by the traditional guests from already mentioned Middle European countries, which perceive Croatia as a second home. Many of them are arriving here every summer for more than 10 years.
Focus on local experience
I believe that post-pandemic tourists will look for more original experience of a trip; like I already said, they will not be attracted by global music and film production. Instead, they might enjoy local Medditeran experience of small places near the sea, like Primosten, or islands Brac and Hvar, which are not affected by the global trends so much.
Visitors will enjoy tasting local authentic food and wine, buying fish directly from the fishermen, and listening to the music provided by local musicians. Especially in Dalmatia, there are music bands called "Klapa", which play traditional Dalmatian music. (listen Klapa Cambi playing song "vo je naša zemlja").