FACTORS OF TOURIST ATTRACTION. When you have one of the rarest preserved fortification systems that is believed to be the longest wall in Europe, and the second longest in the world (after the Chinese Wall, of course!), wouldn’t it be a shame not to make it one of the strongest advantages of your tourist offer?
This is precisely the way leading men of Ston tourism feel, who decided not only to renew their heritage, but to complement it with new programs and contents. This way results of the fight against the biggest problem of national tourism – seasonality, wouldn’t be only partial. For a sharp tourist eye there is no doubt here – potential of Ston is too big to keep presenting the sun and the sea as main tourist products, in the presence of impressive walls and wine and gastronomic luxury!
The extent and diversity of this project, called History on a grain of salt, is proven by the colours of its logo, on which every colour symbolizes a specific piece of tourist attraction of this destination (green colour, for example, represents Napoleon’ Road and green surfaces, cultural heritage is represented by blue colour, gastronomy with yellow, wine making with dark red and tourism by pink).
Value of this project has been recognized and supported by European funds, while local experts dived into business with a lot of enthusiasm.
Because of this, by March 2019 Veliki Kaštio and Koruna forts should shine in their full glow again, as well as Komarda park and a stretch of south wall of Ston Walls. Ston lapidarium will be renewed, Ston part of Napoleon Road expanded and ”Pelješac – wine empire” theme road will be upgraded. Furthermore, this valuable cultural heritage will be additionally spiced up with sophisticated wine and gastro offer and special programs.
When we add to all this attractive marketing tools – from city light and Internet advertising, to international tourist fairs and extremely popular social networks – the fastest promotors of attractive destinations, it is clear that Ston has recruited all its tourist forces and that discouraging figures of only 42 days of utilization of local accommodation capacity per year – will soon be forgotten!.
EMBLEMAITC INGREDIENT. In order to become truly recognizable destination and present its guests local history and culture in an interesting way, Ston has, being aware that worthy heritage is not sufficient by itself, decided to breath in – a grain of life! To accomplish this, it used its emblematic factor x, an ingredient that has played a vital role in the history of this destination – and this is, of course, its remarkable salt, so precious in ancient time it was called white gold!
Thus, salt plays the main role in wisely designed program for visitors – Cum grano salis, which can be seen twice a week from June to September. Without any doubt, all those who are interested in presentation of production, harvesting and transportation of salt, building an impressive protection system and artfulness of Dubrovnik’s merchants who traded with salt all over the world, will participate in this dramatic interpretation in intriguing ambience of Veliki Kaštio fort, located at the side of Ston Saltworks!
VERSATILE EXPERIENCE. Those who enjoy cultural heritage will attend, with the same amount of interest, another program closely tied to fortification system – night ambience-theatrical (!) tour of Ston sights. Innovative and detail tour of Ston Walls, which includes Veliki Kaštio, Koruna and Podzvizd forts, intriguing locations as Rector’s Palace, Bishop’s Palace, Main Guard, Placa and cathedral, famous saltworks and dramatized presentation of shellfish farming, is with a good reason called – Secrets of Ston!
Namely, this tour generously offers all its little-known events, legends and hidden places. Before the eyes of even 60 visitors real and fictional characters will come to life, presenting history and former life of this destination – from late antiquity, Nemanjić dynasty and Kotromanić ban, to ties with Dubrovnik Republic.
And as icing on the cake, visitors will be offered traditional delicious refreshment as well as a performance of local cultural association. When we see how much effort and contents have been put into this program, we want to ”teleport” ourselves to Ston, at least three times a week, and enjoy in this – to eyes, ears and palates – truly pleasant and versatile experience.
STREGHTENING OF CAPACITIES. Ston’s determination not to let anything happen by chance, is shown by the effort in educating workers in cultural and tourist sector, and two public debates for wider public whose goal is raising awareness about the importance and potential of cultural heritage. Education for tourist workers is going to be held as carefully designed workshops, which will cover everything – from Ston history and its legends and stories (which will, we believe, be more than familiar to kind Ston’s hosts, after they have listened all the lectures) to communication skills and using modern technology in presentation of cultural heritage and presentation skills in serving food and drink! Awareness of the fact that quality offer reaches to local man as a subject in tourism is a strong advantage of this truly ambitious and promising project.
LIKE TRUE NOBLEMEN. Ston attractions in combination with renewable resources, kind, skilful and informed hosts and creative ways of presentation sound more irresistible than ever. When you are able to be proud of specific atmosphere of a Medieval town, walls fortified with forts and towers, the oldest – and still active! – saltworks in entire Europe, refreshing oysters (which conquered even the greatest conqueror – Napoleon!), one of the most renowned wine varieties (legendary Plavac mali), tourist tour that offers the best of the best ; and you manage to wrap it all up in super attractive tourist product…all the chances are that your guests will feel like – true noblemen!
Our impression is that leading men of Ston’s tourism were aiming g exactly at this, and to tourist public of the world, it is precisely creative and highly individualised approach to guests what matters the most, together with original and authentic contents. Ston has a trump up its sleeve in all the mentioned categories, so all we can do is wish it a great tourist future!
Photo: TB Ston