Foreign tour operators in Baranja
Promotional travel and presentation of the Gulliver Wine&Dine program
(Zagreb, 8 September 2014) As part of the promotional trip for foreign tour operators from Sweden, US, Denmark and Lituhuania, Gulliver travel presented the Wine&Dine program in Baranja, from 4 to 7 September 2014.
Wine&Dine, a new brand of Gulliver travel, focused on the Croatian gastronomy offer, presents highly sophisticated programs that include Dalmatia, Istria, Central Croatia and Slavonia. Target group are smaller groups and individuals. With this concept, we joined the global trends in development of indigenous and differentiated products, based on sustainability and involvement of the local areas, population and their products/services. What makes Croatia special in this segment are its olive groves, vineyards, orchards, pastures, hunting grounds, truffle habitats in spectacular surroundings, and new generations of talented chefs who consciously exploit these benefits and present stunning achievements in the lagoons of the Adriatic Archipelago, in medieval castles, small taverns next to farmer’s markets, in signature design interiors of luxury restaurants.
The aim of this four-day trip to Baranja was to introduce foreign tour operators with the Wine&Dine program and the enological and gastronomic opportunities of Croatia, as well as promoting one of the most attractive gastronomic regions of Croatia. This way, foreign partners had the opportunity to visit Zagreb, Turopolje, Višnjica, Osijek, Karanac, Kneževi Vinogradi, Zmajevac, Kopački rit, Vina Belje and rural households Ivica i Marica, Tri mudraca, Baranjska kuća and Pustara Višnjica.
Wine&Dine program is recognized and supported by the local tourist communities. Director of Velika Gorica Tourist Board, Miladi Mesarić, Director of Osijek-Baranja County Tourist Board, Antonio Sobol, Director of Osijek Tourist Board Saša Uranjek and Beata Kovač of the Baranja Tourist Board participated in the organization of this promotional travel.
Why did we choose Baranja for this promotional trip? The wine culture is so significant in Baranja that it was even named after wine: In Hungarian Baranja or “Boranya” means the “mother of wine”. The world is introduced to the Croatian gastronomy and enology primarily through the Mediterranean story. That makes it even more surprising that esteemed experts were taken to the continent for the first time.
Promotional trip from Zagreb through Osijek to Baranja is a journey that leads from beautiful urban scenery to protected natural reserves that seem to have another life rhythm, resistant to the hustle of modern civilization. The guests were greeted in Zagreb with Turopolje refreshments, which hinted at the experiences that followed. Wine tasting and Slavonian dinner in the Osijek Baroque Fort have shown us we are traveling not only through space, but through time as well. On one side we were met with colorful fauna accompanied by the chirping, croaking and majestic roar of deer in Kopački rit, and on the other hand there was a centuries old wine and restaurant cellar with ancient Gypsy music. The repertoire included lessons in old crafts and preparation of traditional meals in the open, and as surprising counterpoints – the most modern wine technology in spectacular new hi-tech wineries, encounters with vanguard artists and their vineyard sculptures. This is all scenery for enjoying top wines and regional gastronomy icons.
After the promotional trip, Ruth Tilgaard, representative of the Danish tour operator, Danish Wine Tours/House of Wine, said: “It was very interesting to experience Slavonia and Baranja, the area that is so untouched by the tourist industry. I am impressed by the various wineries we visited and the quality of wine. I was most impressed by the extraordinary people we met, naturally kind and welcoming. Trully original environment and accommodation. I hope I will be able to share this experience with other wine and food enthusiasts from Denmark.”