A good example of how natural resources can be skillfully combined with the gastronomic and wine offer of an area to make for attractive content for tourists eager for new experiences is the sailing down the Danube from Apatin to the heart-shaped island in the middle of the river, ten kilometers away from the town, known locally as Gornja Siga and, since 2015, as the self-proclaimed Free Republic of Liberland.
The tourists are transported by the Liberty vessel, a unique tourist feature in this area, fully energy-independent, equipped with solar panels, water filters, and also featuring three cabins for the accommodation of guests, air-conditioning devices, hot water, refrigerators, a clothes washing machine, a dish washing machine, a TV and routers for Croatian and Serbian internet networks.
– The Liberty yacht is an attractive tourist feature of Gornje Podunavlje, but also promotes ecology, the eco-potentials of this region and the beauty of its nature, the special features of the flora and the fauna and a unique cultural, economic and gastronomic offer – says Vanja Car, the director of one of the two companies founded in Apatin by Czech national Vit Jedlicka, the president of the temporary Government of Liberland.
– While sailing the Danube, tourists are able to enjoy various delicacies, such as the famous Sombor cheese, dried game meat products, spiced with the famous Bezdan paprika, the sweet delicacy from Stapar called “listara” and the famous wines of Ridjicko Vinogorje. This sail route should be a regular tourist route. That is why, in the next period, we will dedicate ourselves to the construction of 10 boats of this type, the so-called motor houses on water – he adds.
According to Vanja Car, the idea is for all tourists who come to Apatin and Sombor and Serbia in general to be provided with quality accommodation, while at the same time demonstrating what the temporary “state of Liberland” should look like once it’s established.
A concrete move that should follow next month is the construction of a luxury tourist complex near Apatin. Jedlicka has bought a large property, called Zelena Arka, with two hectares of water surface, and is to raise a complex soon in that location.
– The property has a total of eight hectares on the coast of the Danube near Apatin and was bought several weeks ago. It will also feature a lake of two hectares. When it’s finished, it will be a new tourist settlement in Apatin, an eco-village. It will have a restaurant, a hotel with apartments and five to 10 luxury villas. The construction begins this month. We are focusing on tourism, the development of this property and boats – a fleet. We also plan to develop the Apatin free trade zone as much as possible. We got the urban project and the construction of a facility can be expected to start soon as well – Jedlicka says.
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