When it comes to celebration, the Croatia are loud and proud!
Spring in Croatia is marked by Easter, especially celebrated in the historical region of Dalmatia. Ceremonies and processions are a common event during this holiday, happening almost every night for a week. If you happen to be in town for Easter, join a group of strangers dressed crazily for the festival and march through the streets - an out-of-the-ordinary experience. Traditionally, many of the local folks dress up in their traditional attires and sing medieval hymns, bless the city gates and put up a skit including a few scenes from the Bible. Many also light bonfires and follow the traditional custom of pistol-shooting called kubura.
If you plan to tour Croatia in January, make sure your travel plans are in sync with the Rijeka Carnival. Vibrant, hip, upbeat and with soaring levels of enthusiasm, this festival is ranked as one of the largest carnival festivals in Europe. A traditional festival/ contest that begins with the ‘coronation’ of the newly crowned Prince and Princess of the city of Rijeka, the event is then followed by the handing over of the City Keys to the Master of the Carnival. Do not miss the after-party though! With concerts, art exhibitions, masquerade parties, this is the most happening part of the day.
The Dubrovnik Winter Festival is celebrated in the month of December when the entire city turns into a celebration of food, people and heritage. It is a series of closely-occurring festivals clustered together into a 40-day celebration. Swing by the theatres to catch a show, gorge on Croatia cuisine (doughnuts a-la Croatian style), or soak in the festivities with a glass of mulled wine. You can also witness Christmas plays near the ice-skating arenas, go wine-tasting and set your eyes on food carts lined up in the Stradun - Dubrovnik’s main street. Or alternatively, attend a live music concert played near the Church of St. Blaise.
To all the wine lovers out there, visit Croatia in November solely for this epic celebration. This day is celebrated in memory of Saint Martin; a bishop worshipped all around Europe as the patron saint of winemakers. St. Martin’s Day marks the end of Agrarian Year and the onset of the harvesting season. This is also when grape juice is traditionally turned into wine. As a mark of celebration, a ritual of wine baptism was started across the northern parts of Croatia in the 17th Century. It is observed to this day, and has gotten only better with time! The festivities are huge in Kutjevo, Sveti Martin na Muri and Dugo Selo.