There is much less stress in daily life and the culture is not focused solely on work, but rather on relationships. This has created a life of greater peace and enjoyment.
My name is Nick and I am from South Africa, and I have an American wife and two sons. I grew up in South Africa and finished college as a social worker, after which I got heavily involved in humanitarian work along with my wife. I have lived 1 year in Canada, 3.5 years in America, and have been living in Croatia for 2.5 years.
I currently volunteer with our local church, as well as volunteer with the Christian Business Klub. I am also a life coach, helping empower people to fulfill their full potential.
There are many things that I absolutely love about Croatia and reasons why I desire to make it my permanent home. Firstly, the people. Croatia is filled with many friendly people who are quick to smile and help when needed. At Least 99% of my interactions with Croatians have been very
positive. I have had to learn the different cultures of Croatia in comparison to South Africa and America, but I feel in many ways it is better in Croatia. There is a real emphasis on building relationships and to have real depth to friendships. While building deep friendships takes time, once you have built them you have friends for life. The best comparison is that what Croatians see as friendship, Westerners would see as family.
I have a really good friendship with my neighbour, who has been a huge help in our adjustment to Croatia. He has helped with everything, from learning social norms to filling out paperwork. This level of relationship with a neighbour is unheard of in South Africa.
Secondly, I love the climate. It is a perfect mild climate, not getting extremely hot or cold, and it doesn’t suffer from high humidity. The coast is also perfect in summer to enjoy a hot day at the beach. This climate has led to Croatia being such a beautiful country. When I go on road trips in South Africa or America, there will be places of beauty along the way, but in Croatia it is all one big place of beauty. Each point of the journey is scenic.
A big factor in us moving to Croatia is the safety and very low crime rates. It is so refreshing to be able to walk down the streets, day and night, and not have to worry about something bad happening. When I first moved to Croatia, I was absolutely shocked to see a 9-year girl traveling on the bus by herself. This is not possible in America and most certainly not possible in South Africa. I have had to learn how to relax when out in public and not stress about crime.
The food and drinks in Croatia are excellent. I find the white wine particularly good and have been introduced to amazing dishes like punjene paprike, čevapi and a proper roštilj. There is a culture of enjoying company and good food here, which is one of my favorite things about Croatia.
Lastly, the slower lifestyle in Croatia has been something we really enjoy. There is much less stress in daily life and the culture is not focused solely on work, but rather on relationships. This has created a life of greater peace and enjoyment. I find I take more time with my family as well as exploring the countryside, and I entertain guests and go for coffee more often. Croatia has taught me to enjoy the important things in life.
I truly find Croatia a paradise to live in. God willing, I will spend the rest of my life here and not regret a single moment.