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Croatia has this week been officially confirmed as the 28th member of the European Union. A status the country has long looked forward to and the first new member to the union since 2007. The country in Central Europe has increasingly been regarded as a holiday hotspot as well as prime for real estate investment but what impact will this change in its status have on travellers into Croatia?

Croatia was part of the former Yugoslavia and this new status will allow it throw off that mantel to become part of a bigger picture for Europe. It is located on the Adriatic, famous for its incredible clear waters. The country boasts some 1,000 miles of coastline and a similar number of islands just off the coast. Cities along the coast offer breath-taking views and charming appeal. The most well-known among these is probably Dubrovnik, a designated world heritage site, though plenty of tourists will be familiar with the likes of Split and Pula in the far north. Take a trip inland from the coast and there are many national parks and stunning lakes to tempt.

With the new status as an EU member, those travellers arriving from within the Union will more than likely find entering Croatia easier and quicker than it was before. They will no longer find themselves subject to the same customs controls. By converse visitors from outside the EU will now need to obtain visas to enter adding to their transition times at least for the time being. The main international airports in Croatia are located in Zagreb, Split, Dubrovnik and Zadar.

It is expected that the country will see vast improvements to its transport infrastructure as a result of funds coming from the EU, which will in turn make getting around a rather more straightforward job for tourists. Tourists from the EU will also be able to use their European Health Insurance Card to gain emergency health treatments necessary during their stay.

Croatia will retain its own currency, the Kuna, at least for the time being and prices in the country are expected to remain consistent for the moment too. Recent surveys actually found Croatia to be a comparatively pocket friendly destination, particularly Split which was found in a study to be cheaper on average for tourists than other destinations in Europe.

Croatia has seen 30 percent increases in tourism levels over the past year or so and this is expected to continue. There are plenty of attractions, history and culture to keep even the most demanding holidaymaker entertained. The country can also boast the fact that it was the first in Europe to introduce commercial naturist holiday facilities and reports indicate that around 15 per cent of visitors into the country have packed extremely lightly so to speak.

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