On the European Best Destinations website Advent in Zagreb won almost 30 thousand votes and surpassed 20 other cities with Christmas markets. A total of 101.703 voters from 176 states voted.
Advent in Zagreb is the best one in Europe. The number one spot was achieved on the independent portal European Best Destinations, where it competed with twenty cities with well-known Christmas markets and atmosphere destinations.
Zagreb surpassed Vienna, whose Christmas market started in the 13th century and was usually visited by Zagreb citizens in large numbers. Vienna, however, ended up in 11th place, and right below Zagreb are Strasbourg, Aachen, Colmar, and Bruxelles.
This prestigious award is worth in tourism as the world cup is to football, and Zagreb won 29.901 votes out of a total 101.703. In the final ten days, voters gathered from 176 countries. Zagreb Advent got the best of 2016 title, which earned it the right to use the award’s logo, and the portal will shared photos, news, and videos of the Zagreb tourist board.
Importance of this is shown in numbers – the portal alone has over 2,5 million registered travelers, and their social media following surpasses 70 000 followers. Martina Bienenfeld, the director of Zagreb tourist board said: „This is an award for our hard work. We tend to always be present on tourist fairs, we filmed a new promotional movie and because of this award, we guarantee the next Advent to be even better“.
This year another partner was added, Turkish Airlines, that became the official airline for the Advent and transfers tourists to Zagreb during December for a 20% lower price. The greatest growth was registered last year when the ice skating rink was placed on King Tomislav square. Despite some critiques from historical experts for „destroying“ this cultural monument, citizens of Zagreb rushed to the Ice Park, the design of which was inspired by Viennese one.
Here are the reasons why Zagreb swooped the award:
- Ice Park – the ice skating rink is a hit
- Advent on Zrinjevac – citizens appreciate traditional food served there
- There is no tent on the main square!
- Fuliranje – the party spread from Tomićeva to Kurelčeva street
- New projects – the surprise element is always a winner, and this year the Upper Town is said to be revived