Dubrovnik is one hell of a pretty city – white brick with red roofs are delicately walled off from the Dalmatian sea on the Mediterranean, and the effect is truly stunning. The “Pearl of the Adriatic” has a lot to offer to any traveller, and should be visited by any traveller in the area, or, indeed, anyone who’s looking for a city break. The city is quintessentially romantic; the wealth and commerce that the city enjoyed during the 15th and 16th centuries allowed it to become a well-built, very pretty place.
Dubrovnik the old town
The walled city of Dubrovnik is a UNESCO world heritage site, and is an enormous attraction for tourists worldwide who come to visit. It’s also an immensely popular site for cruise ships sailing around the Mediterranean. It’s easy to see why. I can’t stress enough – this city is beautiful. The republic of Dubrovnik was, since the 15th century, a civilised and well-protected country with its own culture, laws and customs. Recent history is, sadly, more traumatic – the bombing of the city in ’91 during the break up of Yugoslavia in which 114 civilians were killed and the city itself was severely damaged. Dubrovnik has bounced back, though, and is again a place that’s well worth the visit.
best place to see in Dubrovnik
Sights and activities in Dubrovnik are varied, but if you’re in it for the sights, stick mostly to the old city – yes, the hotels are more expensive but you get what you pay for and for those travelling on a shoestring there are hostels available in the old town, too. Prices aren’t bad and the old town is small enough that you don’t need to worry about where it is, exactly, you’re staying. Make sure to book ahead of time, though: Dubrovnik’s not exactly a best kept secret and people will be lining up to get rooms. In some cities you can risk turning up at 10pm and winging it. Here, you can’t.
Make sure you take a walk round the Dubrovnik on the old city walls – the views are just extraordinary, with the beautiful Dalmatian sea on one side and the even prettier marble houses and streets with red brick on the other. Pick up a seafood or pizza packed lunch from one of the many restaurants in the area – you’ll pay more here for meats than you will for the seafood, so enjoy it while you can. The squid is particularly good and locally sourced from the sea you’ll be looking at whilst you eat it.
what to see in Dubrovnik
Other sights in the city walls include the Rector’s Palace, The Cathedral of the Assumption of the Virgin, and the Sponza Palace – make sure you check out the State Archives within the palace, which holds a collection of 1000-year-old manuscripts, and the Memorial Room for the Defenders of Dubrovnik. Both are a must-see whilst you’re in Dubrovnik. As with a lot of pretty cities, you’ll enjoy just walking around the streets and enjoying the architecture – there’s no need to rush from sight to sight when the whole city is, in itself, a beautiful relic of times gone by.
Dubrovnik offers something a little different from the rest of Croatia – everywhere else along the coast has sun, sea and sand. Dubrovnik has the sun and the sea, and can be a lot prettier than the sand.