Expat Marko Gómez Karadza from Peru

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May 10, 2022 – In our new TCN series, we discover the lives of expats who have spent more than 5 years in Split. Next, meet Marko Gómez Karadza from Peru!

Two idyllic weeks on a Croatian beach are very different from the realities of full-time life. So what is life in Croatia really like as an expat? In a new series on TCN, we meet expats who have lived here for 5 years or more, to discover from them the good, the bad and the ugly of a 12 month life in Croatia. Next, Marko Gómez Karadza from Lima, Peru.

1. First tell us how you came to Croatia? What made you choose this corner of paradise and how long have you been here?

I came to Croatia driven by the need to connect to my roots, as I am of Croatian descent (my grandfather was Croatian). Initially, my idea was to spend a year here to enjoy the place, see my relatives and get closer to culture. For this, I joined the “Croaticum” program to also learn the language while I was sorting through my Croatian documents, which was also part of my initial goal. Once in Croatia, it didn’t take me more than a month to realize that I was going to stay much longer than planned. Currently I am almost 6 years old living in Split.

2. Looking back, what were your perceptions and expectations?

In terms of my expectations, I already knew how beautiful it was thanks to some photos I had seen before, but once there I can say that the reality exceeded my expectations! Also, once here, I was able to delve deeper into the historical heritage and culture, which is impressive for someone who loves this stuff and only knew a small part of it. The food was also above my expectations in a very positive way.

3. After more than 5 years here, how have these perceptions changed. Do you now see Croatia differently?

After 6 years of living here, I have to say that my perceptions haven’t changed that much. It is true that I have a broader idea of ​​how everything works and happens in this country and I am more aware of the pros and cons of living here, but I would say your perception will change depending on where you are from . I see a lot of things that work much better here compared to my home country, other things work in interesting ways the same way and maybe others could do better, but that’s an encouragement to eventually help bring about a positive change on them.

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4. After your stay here, the 3 things you like the most in Croatia?

After 6 years, I can say that the 3 things I like the most in Croatia are: The beautiful nature and the perfect geographical location, the security in the whole country with a very low crime rate compared to other countries; and the beautiful and generous people I have met and with whom I have shared life.

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5. And the 3 things you would like to change.

3 things I would change would be: long, slow and tedious bureaucracy, lack of support for entrepreneurs and small new businesses that are killed with high taxes for the most part; and a focus on building more industries rather than just focusing on tourism.

6. Given your experiences, what advice would you give to any expat considering relocating?

I advise you to learn a little about the culture and the language beforehand. You will always be welcome here, but that really changes if you are seen as someone who makes an effort to try to learn at least a little about their culture and language. People will appreciate it very much. Also analyze industries and business/job opportunities well in advance to live all year round, normally things tend to change with the seasons so it’s good to have a head start in this domain.

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7. The most beautiful place in Croatia, and why?

As a sailor by profession, I spent a lot of time sailing around the Croatian coast and islands and I have to say my favorite place is Korčula. It is such a beautiful island full of greenery all around, amazing beautiful bays and impressive historical heritage. Moreover, since it is very close to the Pelješac peninsula, it is also an ideal place to taste good wines!

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8. Your favorite moment of your stay in Croatia?

My favorite moment here I would say was when my mother came to visit me and we went to visit the old house where my grandfather was born and lived as a child.

I live in Split and I’m a professional skipper. My Instagram account is @gkmarko where people can see beautiful places around the Croatian coast and can reach me if they are interested in sailing here!

Are you an expat who would like to be in this series? If yes, please contact This email address is protected from spam. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. Expatriate Subject

To learn more, be sure to check out our dedicated lifestyle section.

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