Dubrovnik is a Croatian city on the Adriatic Sea. Although its population barely exceeds 40,000, it’s one of the most prominent tourist resorts of the Mediterranean and listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1979.
The beginning of tourism in Dubrovnik is associated with the construction of the Hotel Imperial in Dubrovnik in 1897. Dubrovnik is among the 10 best preserved medieval walled cities in the world. Although Dubrovnik was demilitarised in the 1970s to protect it from war, in 1991, after the breakup of Yugoslavia, it was besieged by the Yugoslav People’s Army (JNA) for seven months and received significant shelling damage.
The city of Dubrovnik was built on maritime trade. The city had a great position in the Middle Ages when it became the only city-state in the Adriatic to rival Venice. Supported by its wealth and skilled diplomacy, the city achieved a remarkable level of development during the 15th and 16th centuries. Furthermore, Dubrovnik was one of the centres of the development of the Croatian language and literature, home to many notable poets, playwrights, painters, mathematicians, physicists and other scholars.
Dubrovnik is nicknamed “Pearl of the Adriatic”. Today tourism is the most important industry in Dubrovnik. There are so many things to do and see in Dubrovnik. The city is steeped in stunning architecture and sculptural detail, and boasts spectacular churches, monasteries, museums, and fountains.
Dubrovnik was heavily bombed during the Croatian War of Independence from 1991 to 1995. Almost all of the damage has been repaired; however, if you look closely around the old town, mortar damage in the cobblestone streets and bullet marks in the stone houses are visible.
City Walls and Forts
No visit to the city of Dubrovnik will be complete without a walk around the some of the finest city walls in the world. Built between 13th and 16th century, and still intact today, the walls are 2 km long, built to keep the enemies out. Today it brings visitors from all over the world.
The round Minčeta Tower protects the northern edge of the city from land invasion, while the western end is protected from land and sea invasion by the detached Lovrjenac Fort . Pile Gate is protected by the Bokar Tower , and the Revelin Fort protects the eastern entrance.
Cathedral of the Assumption of the Virgin
It is said the original church was built with money donated by Richard the Lionhearted who survived shipwreck on his way home from the Third Crusade. The cathedral is notable for its fine altars, especially the altar of St John Nepomuk, made of violet marble. The cathedral treasury contains relics of St Blaise as well as 138 gold and silver reliquaries largely made in the workshops of Dubrovnik’s goldsmiths between the 11th and 17th centuries. Among a number of religious paintings, the most striking is the polyptych of the Assumption of the Virgin, made in the workshop of 16th-century Italian painter Titian.
The Rector’s Palace is a Gothic-Renaissance construction from the late 15th century. The building has outstanding sculptural ornamentations. Notice the finely carved capitals and the ornate staircase in the atrium, which is often used for concerts during the Summer Festival. Also in the atrium is a statue of Miho Pracat, who bequeathed his wealth to the Republic and was the only commoner in the 1000 years of the Republic’s existence to be honoured with a statue (1638).
The palace was built for the rector who governed Dubrovnik, and it contains the rector’s office, his private chambers, public halls and administrative offices. Interestingly, the elected rector was not permitted to leave the building during his one-month term without the permission of the senate.
Game of Thrones
Some of the scenes from the well-known series Game of Thrones was filmed in Dubrovnik. Get to know King’s Landing for yourself. Climb the city walls, picturing the bloody battles from the TV series, and visit Lovrijenac Fortress to learn about the evil exploits of King Joffrey. Follow in the footsteps of Ayra Stark and hear insider gossip galore about the popular series.
Climb the old city walls that were attacked by the Baratheons in the first series, and then explore Lovrijenac Fortress – the beautiful 11th-century castle that features heavily in many of the Game of Thrones battle scenes. Gaze down at fictional Blackwater Bay from the fort’s impressive vantage point, and imagine the bloody Battle of Blackwater taking place outside of its walls.
War Photo Limited
A powerful experience at the state of the art photograpic gallery. An immensely powerful experience, this state-of-the-art photographic gallery has beautifully displayed and reproduced exhibitions curated by photojournalist Wade Goddard, who worked in the Balkans in the 1990s.
War Photo declares its intention to ‘expose the myth of war…to let people see war as it is, raw, venal, frightening, by focusing on how war inflicts injustices on innocents and combatants alike’.
A car free, sandy beach area on the Lapad Peninsula, approximately 3.5 km from the old town, where you can relax in the shade of the numerous trees. At the end of a long pedestrianized street full of cafe bars and restaurants you will see many popular pebble beaches known as Lapad beaches. These beaches are really beautiful and well used. Lapad is definitely one of the most beautiful parts of Dubrovnik and you really must visit it.
Synagogue and Jewish Museum
This originally Sephardic Synagogue is supposed to be the second oldest still in use synagogue in Europe today. A permanent Jewish community here was founded at the end of the 15th century following the exodus from Portugal and Spain. The Jewish Ghetto was established in 1546 on Jewish street in the old town of Dubrovnik.The community flourished and included respected doctors, merchants and state representatives. Jews in Dubrovnik enjoyed relative freedom, but there were some restrictions on their activities at certain points in history. The Synagogue is tiny and delightful, with heavy velvet drapes and a richly painted, midnight blue ceiling. The museum contains valuable menorahs and Torah scrolls, alongside information on the history of the Jewish community in Dubrovnik.
Dubrovnik’s cable car whisks you from just north of the city walls up to Mt Srđ in under four minutes. At the end of the line there’s a stupendous perspective of the city from a lofty 405m, down to the terracotta-tiled rooftops of the old town and the island of Lokrum, with the Adriatic and distant Elafiti Islands filling the horizon. Telescopes help you pick out details far, far below.
The original cable car was bombed during the conflicts and closed in 1991. It reopened to the public for the first time on 10 July 2010.