The author states that at the end of the year 2000 the elementary process of the Republic of Croatia's adherence to European Union has begun and points out the huge difference between standards relating to the rural areas development, readjustment and protection in European Union and those in Croatia. Only campaigns and activities including masses of people are not enough to reach European standards in this field. Bringing Croatia's rural areas closer to those of developed European countries, both in terms of physical or spiritual state is impossible without knowing the complex problematic and without activities with a particular aim. There are numerous, various and obstinate roots of Croatia's drastic set back. The differences result in the first place from specific historical development, with equal economic, social-cultural and spatial components, having the foothold in legislation, but also in the system of education of scientists and specialists, which is still burdened with obsolete stereotypes. Some causes and aspects of this situation are rarely discussed and have seldom been researched more thoroughly. It is just these issues that the author pays particular attention to, like for instance the definition of rural area, its linguistic determination, the planned negation of rural area, the village »urbanization«, fragmentation of peasant's estate, the complex of collectivization and industrialization, the domination of the "PIKs« (agricultural-industrial combines) model logic, hindrance to peasant's smallholdings enlargement, the truth about depopulation of rural areas, the complex of rural tourism, ecological agriculture and people's handicraftsmanship, the concept and experiences of sustainable development of rural areas in developed countries and the reasons for feeble effects of similar initiatives in Croatia.