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article imageQatar to Zagreb direct, Croatian island 8 hours from Middle East

By Paul Bradbury     Oct 2, 2014 in Travel
Zagreb - A revolution in Croatian aviation is underway, with the launch of two new services making Croatia's fabled islands accessible from the Middle East in just eight hours.
As reported earlier this year, Qatar Airways launched direct flights between the Croatian and Qatari capitals of Zagreb and Doha on October 1, 2014, the first such direct scheduled year-round connection between Zagreb and the Middle East in modern Croatian history.
The direct flights, which will operate three times a week, are a reflection of the popularity of the destination, which was first introduced two years ago, via a stopover in Budapest.
Speaking at the time of the announcement, Qatar Airways’ CEO Akbar Al Baker, said: “In the two years since we began flying to Zagreb we have watched it grow into one of our most popular destinations in Europe.
“This is why I am so pleased that we are now able to provide our passengers with a new and more convenient option by offering a direct flight to this beautiful city direct from Doha.”
The thrice-weekly service is part of a daily service which will also include four flights via Budapest as before. With Qatar Airways connecting to more than 140 destinations worldwide, the benefits this new connection brings are clear, and it comes at a time when there is a significant increase in new routes into the airports of the EU's newest member, particularly to its coastal destinations of Dubrovnik, Split, Zadar and Pula.
The direct news will be welcome news to the growing number of tourists interested in Croatia, and there has been a strong surge in visitors from the Far East, which has resulted in the first flights from China to Zagreb being planned.
With 66 inhabited inlands and poor ferry connections  the potential of ECA for Croatian tourism is h...
With 66 inhabited inlands and poor ferry connections, the potential of ECA for Croatian tourism is huge
European Coastal Airlines
While the increased international traffic gives tourists more choice, aviation developments within Croatia's borders are producing even more enticing possibilities for tourists. The launch of the first scheduled seaplane operation in modern European aviation history in Split this summer has proved a big success, with travellers able to transit from Split Airport to the premier island of Hvar in just 13 minutes.
The service, operated by European Coastal Airlines, is set to add both Zagreb and the island of Rab to the network later this month, connecting the two destinations daily with a travel time of just 37 minutes.
Intriguingly for international visitors from the Middle East, the Zagreb - Rab service takes off shortly after the arrival from Doha, meaning it will soon be possible to arrive from the Middle East to a Croatian island in just eight hours. As the seaplane network expands and more international airlines look at Croatia as an option, the potential for short-break tourism in Croatia's coastal hot-spots is enticing indeed.
More about Qatar airways, Zagreb, Croatia, european coastal airlines, hydroplanes croatia
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