„Get to know the Mediterranean“
With this motto we would like to offer our readers the opportunity to find out all about MareMundi’s project weeks for students.
We often get requests from teachers or parents who consider our work useful and would like to present our program at their schools (or the school of the child). We greatly appreciate this commitment and we are happy about everyone who works for us and thus for increasing sensitivity of youth towards nature and the environment and especially for the largest ecosystem of the world- the sea! For this reason we want to simplify this process of gathering information for you-and for us-and make the most important data and facts accessible here.
Feedback from schools:
We proudly present to you the results of the electronic feedback we received from the accompanying teachers after their school project week:
Category Total events in 2016:
Rubrik Gesamtveranstaltung im Jahr 2017:
Which schools are suitable?
MareMundi has no restrictions regarding the type of school but the most important requirement is that the participants can swim. Over the years we have been coaching many classes from different types of schools and grades (5th – 13th grades), we adapt the topics and the level of difficulty to the desires and needs of the course participants.
We do offer courses at university level on request too (university excursions, teacher training).
For other interested parties and nature lovers there are various (diving) excursions guided by MareMundi such as natural history & marine biology excursions (on request).
When is the best time?
From the beginning of April to the middle of July and from the beginning of September to the end of October courses are available on Krk. The actual MareMundi project days should be between Monday and Friday, the arrival or departure can also take place on weekends. 3 project days is the minimum and 14 project days is maximum. To ensure a coherent program we recommend 3-5 project days, ie a travel time of 5-7 days. A stay in Krk beyond the duration of the project days is possible at any time and- if organized independently-can be combined with cultural-, sports- or similar project weeks.
How many participants do I need?
The optimal group size is between 18 students up to 45 students (excluding teachers). Larger groups usually will be taken care of separately but this can be discussed individually with the teachers in advance.
How much does a project week cost?
The pricing mainly depends on several factors such as travel period, duration, group size and location.
Here are two non-binding price examples as a guideline:
Class organizes the travel transfer and the bus itself
Class from Graz (30-40 Students)
4 Project days + 5 nights in Hotel Omorika including half board
price per student: approx. 290-320 €
Coach bus including all transfers in package price
Class fromVienna (30-40 Students)
4 Project days + 5 nights in Hotel Omorika including half board
price per student: approx .420-470 €
On request we will gladly calculate the appropriate package price.
When should I request / book?
This cannot be answered flat rate and mainly depends on the desired period. The most popular months are June, beginning of July and September. For this period you should request / book about 2 years in advance. For the months April, May, October it is a bit more relaxed but the sooner the better. Of course you can also be put on a waiting list in case of cancellation of a group or other changes.
Please note that the information of schedules in the online calendar is not binding. Confirmed arrangements can only be made after consulting MareMundi, the travel agencies and the hotel. We kindly ask for your understanding.
Where can I request / book?
The scheduling is done via MareMundi: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Keeping the request short and simple please provide us with the following information:
- Name of the teacher including phone number and email
- Name of the school
- expected number of students
- expected number of accompanying teachers
- Travel date including arrival and departure (please see availability dates in the booking calendar).
- Number of desired MareMundi course days on site (For short travel distances you can also book half-day classes on the day of your arrival and departure)
- Do you want our travel agency to organize a bus or do you arrange it by yourself ? (Please see the information in the section “Arrival and means of transport on site”)
- Do you want to do boat trips? (See point “The Boat M.B. Kosljun)
- we kindly ask for disclosure if you or your school have been with us before
If a suitable date is found our travel agency will take care of the offer, financial settlement and organization.
Who will supervise the project weeks?
The team consists of young biologists or advanced biology students with years of field experience. They have detailed knowledge about marine habitats and their inhabitants, about marine and environmental protection and work with natural and experiential educational methods. At least one instructor is available for each class, which is usually supported by student assistants and interns. The ratio of supervisor to student is at least 1:15.
Mostly all supervisors are certified lifeguards.
The teachers / classes / students can choose content-related topics and help shaping the program of the course. Levels of difficulty, learning objectives and pedagogical methods are adapted to the needs of the course participants. We kindly ask the teachers to inform us about their special needs. The designated MareMundi course instructor will contact the responsible teacher a few weeks before the start of the course in order to clarify any questions and requests regarding the course program.
Our project weeks cover a wide range of topics and if not requested otherwise the following main topics are taught:
- Biology & Ecology (Marine Biology, Oceanography, Zoology, Botany)
- Marine & Environmental Protection
- Geography, Geology, Climate & Mediterranean
- Culture & History
In good weather conditions the daily program can also be performed with a boat (please note that this will incur additional costs to be paid on site.) For further information please see “The Boat M.B. Kosljun”.
Typical daily routine
Usually the day starts with an introduction to exciting natural, marine or environmental topics around the Mediterranean. This is followed by snorkeling, microscopy, workshops, experiments, bus or boat trips to the most beautiful places on the island, observations in nature, determining the animals found and sighted, natural history walks and city visits.
Details can be found in the sample program.
Basically we spend a lot of time outdoors and in the water!
Therefore there will be a safety briefing with the school class at the beginning of the project days (explanation of the dangers and rules above and below water, snorkeling technique).
This safety briefing is also mandatory for short snorkeling trips!
Changes and shifts of the program items may occur at any time due to weather conditions and organizational matters. The rule is: Snorkeling is not possible in heavy rain, thunderstorms or high waves! the team on site will always strives to offer a varied, instructive and exciting program with a lot of variety.
It is also possible to do dives with our dive partner Styria Günis Diving Center. From introductory dives to regular dives for certified divers, anything is possible. We try to coordinate the diving activities as best as we can with the course program. While some do dives the others are snorkeling. For all diving activities we ask for an early request! Further information about our diving partner can be found under “Styria Günis Diving Center”.
INFRASTRUCTURE & ENVIRONMENT
The island of Krk
The island of Krk is the largest island of the Adriatic and offers plenty of space for beautiful outdoor excursions with a varied program. It can be reached within a few hours directly via the highway .A bridge connects the island to the mainland saving you time waiting for a ferry.
Due to its proximity to the mainland, its northern location and its special shape the island forms the transition zone between Central European and typical Mediterranean vegetation. In other words with each kilometer the island will look a little different with many different microhabitats and climates above as well as underwater.
So for example the island is known for the highest herpeto-fauna (amphibians & reptiles) of all Mediterranean islands it is also an important stopover for migratory birds.
The old towns of the island (for example Krk, Vrbnik, Baska) have been built by the Romans and Venetians, so in almost every town romantic narrow streets, high church towers and rounded paving stones can be found. Just as from the picture book.
MareMundi Base Krk
MareMundi Base is located in the small town of Punat in a sheltered bay on the west side of the island of Krk. The base is integrated into the Hotel Omorika which at the same time offers accommodation for the school classes and has suitable rooms for lectures and the opportunity for microscopy.
The boat M.B. Kosljun
The M.B. Kosljun with Captain Toni Zic & Niko Orlic is a beautiful pirate-style boat.
Boat trips are available taking us to the most beautiful bays and snorkeling spots on the island of Krk (like the Golden Bay, Stara Baska) or to the uninhabited islands Kormati (gull colony) and Plavnik (steep wall with geese vultures, untouched coastlines and bays, beautiful high plateau) or for an evening trip to the city of Krk. Our captain is also a very good cook and provides us with food & drinks on the full day trip. You can choose between a vegetarian meal (various salads, grilled vegetables), fish (mackerel from the breed) or meat (cevapcici and chop).
The cost of the boat trips are not included in the package and have to be paid via Netbanking (collective bill) after the trip!
Usually we make three boat trips:
- full-day excursion to the uninhabited island of Plavnik incl. BBQ (snorkeling on great cliffs, short hikes, griffon vulture and co, beach clean-up)
- 3-4 hour ride including snorkeling and plankton pull
- Evening trip to the city of Krk
The individual prices for the boat trips are available on request. If all three trips are booked the captain will offer a package price of € 42 per person (price2018). The prices apply to both -students and teachers!
Depending on the weather the captain takes the right to cancel the boat trip for safety reasons (strong wind, high waves, thunderstorms, etc.) In this case, of course, the MareMundi team ensures a nice replacement program without a boat. In case the group has booked several days the boat trip will be postponed to another day.
Our reliable partner Günther Rath (from Styria, as you can easily tell from the name of the dive center) is our man all about diving!
With the diving center, the school class has the option to rent snorkeling equipment (neoprene, mask, snorkel, fins & boots) for a surcharge, or to do discover scuba diving. The prices for equipment / diving incl. all necessary registration forms you will receive upon request. If interested, we ask for early notification and independent organization / agreement (filling out the necessary forms, picking up the equipment on arrival) with the dive center, you will get all the necessary information when booking!
Hotel Omorika is located in the small town of Punat in a sheltered bay in the southwest of the island of Krk. It is located about 200 meters from the beach promenade and 500 meters from the village center and offers various recreational opportunities in the vicinity (small beaches and coves, playground, beach volleyball court, wakeboarding & water skiing, small bars, ice cream shops, souvenir shops and restaurants, etc.) for individual care (supermarket, currency exchange, ATM, pharmacy).
It offers half board (breakfast and dinner buffet style) and the students are usually accommodated in triple to quadruple rooms with shower and toilet. Girls and boys are always accommodated in separate rooms, teachers usually get a single room on request. By default, a single room is also reserved for the bus driver- those costs have to be paid on site directly at the hotel.
Arrival & Transportation on site
Usually the island can be reached by coach bus but it´s also reachable by public transport such as Flixbus, train or plane (Rijeka airport directly on the island of Krk) In case you chose travelling without a coach bus the mobility of the group on site must be assured by organizing a bus on site independently! For your convenience the complete bus journey can also be organized by our tour operator together with the course in the package offer.
Depending on the destination, 30-60 km of travel per project day must be expected. In high season, depending on the destination, there may be incidental parking charges.
The coach may not have special sizes! Exceptionally large buses (for example: double decker, 3 axle,> 50 seats) or buses over 12.5 m in length are not suitable for many of our destinations! This should be strictly adhered to in order to ensure a smooth running of the project week. In addition, this is also important for the pricing since the bus makes up a major part of the costs depending on the size of the group!
INDIVIDUAL CONDITIONS + NECESSARY EQUIPMENT
Students who go into the water must be able to swim (well)! If students are unable to swim, have health issues (ie epilepsy) or other problems that may be relevant to the excursion (ie falling from rocks due to balance disorder , fear of water) we kindly ask teachers to specify them in the application! If there are lots of bad or non-swimmers in the class the meaningfulness of the project week should be questioned. Students or their parents will receive a safety and security document that must be complete and signed by the parents prior to the excursion. On-site instructors have the right to exclude students who are unable to meet the safety requirements or who act negligently from the course activities (such as snorkeling, hiking on the cliff, etc.). In this case, the team will make the best possible effort to involve the student (s) with alternative tasks in the program.
If any relevant problems occur we will ask the teachers and also the students for absolute honesty and accuracy!
Equipment to bring
- Travel documents – without a valid travel document the entry into Croatia is not allowed and can be fined with high penalties!
- Snorkeling equipment – all students should bring a mask and Snorkel or rent it from our dive partner! Fins are not necessary but beneficial!
- Wetsuit – a thin wetsuit is advantageous also during the summer months, in spring and autumn you can only stay in the water for a longer time with a proper wetsuit! Wetsuits can be rent from our dive partner!
- Water shoes or booties are absolutely necessary for the course operation
- Proper footwear is necessary for course operation! Sneakers or proper sandals to hold on to the foot are well enough. Flip-flops are not suitable for course operation!
- Warm clothing / rain & wind protection – in bad weather it might get cold especially during boat trips
- Sun protection (cap, headscarf) and sunscreen
- Bath / beach towels
- Water bottles – to minimize plastic consumption we ask each student to bring their own refillable water bottle!
- Shopping bag or backpack – to minimize the plastic consumption when shopping in the supermarket!
- Large sturdy bag (ie IKEA carrycot) to carry wet snorkeling equipment and neoprene items
- Snack box
- Money for snacks, drinks and other things (supermarket, ATM and money exchange on site)
- Individual hygiene products with lockable box for use in the field – we will often be outdoors in the wild without toilets and do not want to pollute the environment with hygiene products!
Bericht und Fotos: Alexander Heidenbauer
Redaktion: Stefan Haardt, Alexander Heidenbauer