Flights from Japan to Croatia
At the beginning of June, the first direct charter flight from Osaka to Zagreb arrived at Zagreb airport.
The Croatian National Tourist Board organized a welcome ceremony for the 350 passengers and crew-members, who enjoyed a performance of the folklore ensemble, each receiving a traditional gingerbread heart (‘licitarsko srce’) as a gift.
The charter flights are organized by the Japanese agency ‘Hankyu’. For Japanese visitors, they enable faster and easier travel to Zagreb, the capital with the highest increase in the number of visitors from Japan in the region.
Since the World Expo exhibition was held in the Japanese city of Aichi in 2005, Zagreb is witnessing a 50 % annual growth rate in the number of Japanese visitors.
According to surveys, it is the historical monuments, natural beauties and relaxed way of life that Japanese visitors enjoy most in Zagreb. They also like to visit some cultural institutions.: Museum of Naive Art and the Botanical Garden, which will be celebrating its 120th anniversary in July.
The garden was opened in 1899 and is located within the ‘Lenuci horseshoe’, a stretch of parks and green areas comprising a monumental frame around the lower town. In the garden, numerous rare plants are cultivated. The garden comprises an arboretum, a flower section, 14 greenhouses, three stone areas and two artificial lakes, an inexhaustible source of inspiration to many great Croatian painters. It is on these lakes that the
great aquarelle painter Slava Raškaj painted some of her paintings from the ‘nenuphar’ series. Today, these are considered masterpieces of Croatian aquarelle painting from the turn of the 19th century. As part of the Zagreb University, the Botanical Garden belongs to the School of Natural Sciences and has always had educational, cultural and historical value. For the past couple of decades it has realized its full potential in tourism as well and was proclaimed a monument of garden architecture in 1971.