The since the middle Ages existing Kingdom of Croatia came under foreign rule in the 12th century. In the 19th century the Austrian-Hungarian Empire ruled Croatia and after the First World War the Croats were incorporated into Yugoslavia in 1919.
1941 finally the independent state of Croatia was established. After WWII Croatia became part of Yugoslavia (today Slovenia, Croatia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia, Montenegro, Macedonia). After the gradual disintegration of Yugoslavia Croatia became an independent country again in 1991.
Since Croatia was often ruled by various powers, different influences in the culture can still be recognised. The north was influenced by Austria. In the east you can find the influence of the Turks and on the Adriatic coast, the Venetian and the ancient culture. Since July 2013 Croatia is part of the European Union.
The Pliwitzer lakes are one of the eight national parks. In the 1960s, the Winnetou films of Karl May were filmed here.
The most famous floodplain and wetland is called Kopacki rit, located in the triangle of the Danube, the river Drava and the city Osijek.
The dog breed Dalmatian was named after the region Dalmatia (pictured right). The elegant animals accompanied carriages of the noble society in order to protect travellers from thieves or wild animals.
Facts & Figures
Inhabitants 4,5 Million
Area 56 542 km²
Specialities Very varied (meat and fish specialties, Cevapcici, hearty soups)
Geography Varied landscape with approx. 1 000 Islands, flat plains and mountains
Nikola Tesla Inventor of the alternating current
Fausta Vrančića Designer of the first parachute