Sveti Martin na Muri, Croatia – 2016 International Finalist
Sveti Martin na Muri is the northernmost geographical point of the Republic of Croatia on the border with the Republic of Slovenia and in close proximity to the Republic of Hungary and the Republic of Austria. The Municipality of Sveti Martin na Muri is composed of 14 villages with a total of 2605 inhabitants in an area of 25.14 km2. It is located on the right bank of the river Mura, in the valley between the last of the northern hills of Međimurje county.
The municipality has in the last decade achieved a substantial economic growth in the areas of production and trade, primarily spurred by the Economic zone Sveti Martin na Muri. Prerequisite to operating is environmental acceptability and compatibility with the Municipality tourism strategy. The systematic and constant growth of production and employee numbers of the Economic zone is due to a good geo-strategic location, incentive cooperation with the local self-government and fast administrative solutions, organized infrastructure, the quality of labor force and recognisability of the economic and touristic development of the Municipality.
Over the last decade, a lot has been achieved in the development of sustainable tourism in the Municipality, with its thermal water, spa and ecological facilities. The LifeClass Terme Sveti Martin is already a well-recognized and branded thermal and sport destination. The ecological and cultural heritage is a big part of the touristic offer, with emphasis on innovating and modern approach in presentation.
The Municipality has been awarded many national (5-time winner of the Green flower for best kept municipality in Croatia) and international prizes for its ecological and sustainable development (European Destinations of Excellence 2007, Golden Flower of Europe – silver level, for living quality, 2010 ). The Municipality is also member of the Croatia 365 project as a tourist destination available around all year with its offer: mill on the river Mura, Visitors center with 4D museum in development, Regional park Mura, Vine road, cycling and hiking roads and many various manifestations.
In 2015, there were so far over 80 000 overnight stays in the Municipality area, which makes about 80% of guest arrivals and stays in the county of Međimurje.