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New victories and projects of the Mošćenička Draga maritime heritage

traditional boat in Rovinj from Mošćenička Draga

(Photo: Silvija Jacić)

The traditional boat “Kvarner guc MD 551” from Mošćenička Draga won the prestigious traditional boat regatta in Rovinj.

The regatta celebrated its 18th anniversary with a three-day program from June 7 to 9. The crew, consisting of Robert Mohović, Josip Mohović, and Franko Gržin, effectively showcased Draga’s maritime heritage to numerous participants and visitors.

The victory carried additional weight as the municipality of Mošćenička Draga in Rovinj was a partner of the Adriatic PorTLand Interreg Italy-Croatia project.

Crew from the Rovinj regatta

Additionally, for the first time, Mošćenička Draga had the opportunity to present the flavors and aromas of its traditional dishes to the Rovinj audience during the “Virada in piñata” culinary program.

This created an attractive gastronomic experience alongside other participants from Istria, Kvarner, Slovenia, and Italy.

Kvarner guc boat Nerezinac

(Photo: Zoran Soldatić)

Wooden boats from Mošćenička Draga traditionally participate in the Rovinj regatta of traditional boats featuring a lug and a Latin sail. This year, in addition to the winning boat, another boat with a crew from Mošćenička Draga sailed through the Rovinj waters. The crew, consisting of Igor Knapić, Ivana Blaženić, Arian Živadinov, and Ermano Jedretić, secured second place in the regatta.

This year’s guest appearance was extra special for us, according to Prof. Robert Mohović. He said, “The 18th year of the Rovinj Regatta and the 20th year of the Ecomuseum-Ecomuseo “Batana” are important milestones for our friends from Rovinj. We are delighted to have enhanced the celebration with the victory of our boat.

Professor Mohovica paiting

(Photo: Gordan Ukić)

However, the most crucial aspect is the opportunity for socializing and exchanging experiences with friends of the sea, as well as preserving and passing on knowledge and maritime skills.

The wind and current conditions made the regatta a real tactical challenge on the way back. It was a tense race as we sailed with the wind astern and the Italians were in close pursuit due to their larger sails. Nevertheless, our boat managed to sail to victory!

“As every year, the Rovinj regatta brought together many enthusiasts of traditional boats and sailing, providing a great opportunity to celebrate the 10-year anniversary of the Coordination of Associations for the Preservation and Revitalization of the Maritime, Fishing, and Shipbuilding Heritage of Kvarner and Istria, which I chair.

The lively gathering of sea enthusiasts was elevated by including a gastronomic program, showcasing our dedication to preserving our culinary heritage. Our attire and preparation methods were authentic, and we presented three dishes: salted fish (anchovies) on a salad with boiled potatoes, Kvarner shrimp on buzara with pasta, and a specialty that pleased many – frittata with our locally grown garlic shoots, known as baci in our region.

Kvarner Scampi na buzaru being cooked

(Photo: Ekomuzej Mošćenička Draga)

I want to express my deep gratitude to our “chefs,” Sandra and Josip Mohović, Sonja and Ermano Jedretić, and Franko Gržin, who, together with me, contributed to the success of the event,” highlighted Prof. Mohović.


(Photo: Silvija Jacić)

The Rovinj regatta provided an opportunity for a working meeting between the partners of the Interreg project Adriatic PorTLand Italy Croatia.

The project involves the municipality of Mošćenička Draga, in cooperation with the Ecomuseum of Mošćenička Draga and the Chair of the Čakavian Assembly, the Italian municipality of Cesenatico and its Maritime Museum, and the association TVB (Traditional Venetian boats) from the municipality of Battagila Terme, with the leading partner being the Institution “House of Batana”. Unlike previous projects that focused solely on coastal maritime heritage, AdriaticPorTLand aims to develop a structured plan for integrating tourist offers of the coast and hinterland with inland waterways.

Portland Exchange lab

(Photo: Silvija Jacić)

This will be achieved by valorizing traditional navigation that historically connected these communities. The project seeks to utilize Adriatic traditional navigation and shipbuilding as a link between land and sea to create innovative tourist services and routes. This approach is expected to significantly strengthen the role of culture in the development of sustainable tourism, particularly in reducing seasonality and managing guest numbers at coastal destinations.

“In Rovinj, we attended events and workshop activities (Exchange Lab) organized by our partners for the second time. In May, we visited the municipality of Battagila Terme, where we learned about their unique traditions through lectures, a tour of the Museum of River Navigation, and a visit to the only shipyard of their typical Remiera Euganea boats.

Italian shipyard in Nattaglia

(Photo: Nives Giuricin)

Unfortunately, their regatta was canceled due to floods. However, we were pleased to gather with our boats in Rovinj, where, as the leading partner, they introduced us to their best practices. We also held an interesting Exchange Lab at the local Rovinj tavern Spacio Matika. During this event, the historian and founder of the Ecomuseum-Ecomuseo “Batana”, Marino Budicin, shared many interesting insights from Rovinj’s rich maritime history and discussed solutions to the challenges we encounter,” noted Zoran Soldatić, associate for EU projects of the municipality of Mošćenička Draga.

The Exchange Lab began with a theoretical part, followed by a practical session where project partners had the opportunity to share skills from their respective traditions. In the case of Rovinj, this involved a demonstration of batana rowing. Professor Robert Mohović emphasized the need to address the ongoing challenge of preserving maritime heritage.

While the heritage draws admiration and interest, it is essential to integrate it into sustainable and profitable tourism offerings within the legal framework. Mohović believes that local government support, particularly financial incentives, is crucial for the initiative to become self-sustainable and a significant part of the tourism industry.

After discussing our challenges in our work, it was a pleasure to try a different rowing technique in the batana. Our 16th Show and regatta of traditional sailing boats “MALA BARKA – ŠTORIJA OD MORA” will start from July 12-14 next month, and we are preparing a diverse program for the event.

As hosts to the partners of the Adriatic PorTLand project, we will organize an Exchange Lab on the potential use of heritage resources in the tourism sector on July 11 and 12. In the practical sessions, we will demonstrate various traditional rowing techniques and other activities to contribute to the project’s goals. Professor Robert Mohović concluded with these remarks.

Portland project partners in Rovinj

(Photo: Silvija Jacić)

Text: Silvija Jacić (Promo&Press) for the Municipality of Mošćenička Draga

Photo: Zoran Soldatić, Gordan Ukić, Nives Giuricin, Silvija Jacić, Ecomuseum Mošćenička Draga

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