CycleSeeing Attractour – CSA HUHR/1901/2.1.2/0107

As a part of the CycleSeeing Attractour – CSA, an opening press conference was held on 23th of September 2020 on Mađerka hill in Štrigova, where Mr. Matija Posavec, Međimurje County Governor, Mr. Stanislav Rebernik, Mayor of Municipilaty of Štrigova, Ms. Ana Kralj, Deputy Director of Public Institutions for the Development of the Međimurje County REDEA and Mr. Josip Mikec, Head of the Tourist Office of the Štrigova Tourism Board addressed the media.

The head of the Tourist Office of the Štrigova Tourism Board, Josip Mikec, commented on his long-term dream of building a lookout tower on the beautiful Mađerka hill, a place of such beauty and uniqueness, that was emphasized by Emilija Krauthaker (a dancer of Hungarian origin, after whom the place was named), who had claimed living only from the eggs and the beauty that surrounded her. Following her speaking, many visitors come to enjoy the view and the surroundings, and the new lookout tower will greatly enrich the offer of northwestern Croatia. In the last twenty years, numerous events have been held in Štrigova and on Mađerka hill, which, thanks to the lookout tower, will be able to be organized more often and with better quality.

Ana Kralj, Deputy Director of the Public Institutions for the Development of the Međimurje County REDEA, presented the project activities and their importance for cross-border cooperation and congratulated the Mayor on bravely taking on the role of the lead beneficiary. Today’s press conference marked the beginning of the implementation of the cross-border project, which began on September the 1 and is co-financed by the European Regional Development Fund, as a part of the cross-border cooperation program Interreg V-A Hungary – Croatia.

The lead beneficiary is the Municipality of Štrigova. The beneficiary from the Croatian side is the Štrigova Tourism Board, the partner from Hungary is the Municipality of Nagykanizsa, the supporting stakeholders are the Cycling Club “Mura Avantura” from Croatia and the Cycling Association “Termál Kt Kis-Balaton” from Hungary. Public Institution for the Development of the Međimurje County REDEA is responsible for project management.

The budget of the project is 1.463.966,46 EUR of which the grant amounts is 1.244.371,48 EUR. As part of the project, the leading beneficiary, Municipality of Štrigova, will build and equip the Bike info center with lookout tower, which is only one component of the project. The new tourist attraction will enrich the tourist offer of the Municipality of Štrigova, an attractive continental tourist destination known for the church of St. Jerome with frescoes by the famous painter Ivan Ranger, numerous vineyards and fine wines, bike trails and other sporting events, as well as cultural and artistic events, which are also organized on Mađerka hill. Međimurje County as the third most visited continental destination in the Republic of Croatia and the Municipality of Štrigova with the CycleSeeing Attractour – CSA project will get a new innovative tourist product, that will enrich the tourist and cycling offer of Međimurje County and create conditions for new tourists and cyclists. The Municipality of Nagykanizsa will build an Eco visitor center with a bike pump track, that will influence the tourist look and offer of the city. Cycling and active holidays are the link between the project beneficiarys and the upcoming activities and new contents are a continuation of the Attractour and CIAN 2.0 projects from the first call of the Cross-border Co-operation Programme Interreg V-A Hungary – Croatia. The Štrigova Tourism Board will work on the promotion of the cross-border region as part of project activities in cooperation with the Municipality of Nagykanizsa. By creating new interesting tourist packages, they will promote cross-border regions as tourist destinations with an attractive offer of content for active holidays. Marking bicycle routes in Međimurje County and the region around Nagykanizsa will improve cross-border connections and make it easier for many cyclists and other visitors to find tourist facilities. The introduction of the ETIS system (European Tourism Indicators System) aims to contribute to the improvement of sustainable destination management by providing stakeholders in tourism with a simple and useful system, tools that will help them manage sustainability processes and analysis of the achieved progress and business results..

The development of an innovative mobile application as a system for monitoring the number of visitors and tourists, as well as their impact on the environment footprint, will provide quick access to useful, interesting information about destinations.

“The long-standing wish of the authorities and the locals is finally beginning to be realized,” said Mayor Stanislav Rebernik. “The activities that preceded today were very complex, demanding and challenging, but they led us to the beginning of the implementation of the cross-border project and the creation of new significant tourist facilities,” he continued. One of the reasons for building a lookout tower on Mađerka hill is the interesting history of this area, and the other is the natural beauty and a breathtaking view. It is important to mention that the Bike info center with lookout tower will be built, which will contribute to a better reception of visitors and tourists, as well as the organization of numerous events. Furder plans include the development of religious tourism, the arrangement of a new bicycle paths, and the construction of a new fire station. The Mayor thanked the County of Međimurje and the County Governor Matija Posavac for their support in the implementation of projects, as well as the Public Institution for the Development of the Međimurje County REDEA which helps and advises in the preparation and implementation of projects and in the end he wished a happy implementation of the CSA project.

“Međimurje County is one of the most visited continental destinations in Croatia and from year to year we are strengthening our tourist position, but given the potential we have, we must strive for even greater numbers,” said Međimurje County Governor Matija Posavec, who praised the persistence of the Municipality of Štrigova, Štrigova Tourism Board, REDEA and Međimurje County led by Governor Deputy Sandra Herman and Head of the Management Board for Economy Darko Radanović. “We are getting a new innovative tourist product that will enrich the tourist and cycling offer and create a framework to extend the stay of guests in Međimurje because in a small space, within 8 kilometers of the airline we have Mađerkin breg, Pušipel World Center, Eco-tourist educational hiking and biking trail “Svetomartinska Mura” next to Mlin na Muri, the Visitor Center “Med dvemi vodami” in Križovac and „Matulov grunt“ in Frkanovac, concluded the Governor Posavec.

Excellent cross-border cooperation, new and existing tourist attractions, numerous cultural and artistic events, joint sports events, innovative mobile application and well-marked cycling routes will affect and strengthen the image of the border region as an active holiday destination.

Text: Public Institution for Development of the Međimurje County REDEA