From the tourist information booklet of Osijek we found about the folk dance festival. Starting off late after a lazy morning, we took tram and bus to the edge of the city to start hitch-hiking. We waited in the cross-road near a sunflower and plum field for an hour, then we were picked up by a trawler. We were at the back and it was slow but we enjoyed the scenic ride.
The driver was a baker who worked in a nearby food factory. He took us to his house and treated us an early dinner. In this sufficient and simple family we enjoyed their hospitality. They made their own cheese and reared their own chicken. It is this simple village life that we from the city are looking for.
We attracted so much attention as the audience for the dance show. Many local people wanted to take pictures with us. As for the dance on stage, it was refreshing to see local costume and local melody with folk dances.The organizer Migel found us and even offered us free beer and food. We felt so thankful for the hospitality. He asked us where we slept that night, we said camping. He even arranged two nights in a hotel free of charge for us !!! Feeling so fortunate, we fully enjoyed the night on the dance show and the later folk music concert in the bar.
The next day we visited a 19 century castle and appreciated how the oak was used to build the interior. Initially we were not allowed to go in, but the tourist information officer gave us a free tour into the castle.
After some lovely ice-cream we went to the city center to see the march of traditional folk dancers from different part of inland Croatia, Macedonia, southern Hungary and Bosnia. After the march was the final show-off of the dancers. We sat before the stage for the whole night to see them dancing on the stage. However they were mostly facing each other, we would enjoy more if the dancers danced on the ground and people went around them to see their performance.
The festival ended with a great party. There was live band playing traditional musics and people on the ground stood up and dance. It was a really local party that people dance folk.
We enjoyed a quiet and local weekend in the small town and thanked so much for their hospitality. We highly recommend this to other visitors for next year.