This wonderful city of Croatia is not in vain called the "pearl of the Adriatic." Dubrovnik is located in the southern part of the Dalmatian coast - the most beautiful place in Europe, famous for its clear sea water, temperate Mediterranean climate and islands covered with lush forest vegetation.
Being a city with a long and amazing history, Dubrovnik is rich in attractions. These are magnificent cathedrals, historical palaces and fortresses, ancient squares and streets, as well as picturesque parks and beaches, colorful city markets, museums and much more. Dubrovnik’s unique historical center, the Old Town, is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. What can you see in Dubrovnik, tourists coming here? Read on ...
Dubrovnik city walls
For all tourists without exception, the highlight of their stay in Dubrovnik is a trip along the top of the medieval city walls. Exploring this historic site will take at least an hour, as the ancient walls surround the entire block of the Old Town. Most of the city walls were erected in the 13th century, but over the following years they were further strengthened to withstand repeated enemy attacks.
For example, in the 15th century a number of massive towers were added to protect the city from the Turks. Fans of the Game of Thrones series will definitely recognize the places where scenes were filmed in the capital of the Royal Harbor. The powerful old walls, which in some places reach a height of 25 meters and a width of 6 meters, are themselves an impressive historical site, not to mention the breathtaking views that open from here to the city, harbor and the Adriatic Sea.
Address: Dubrovnik City Walls, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
Walking in Dubrovnik along the winding streets of the Old Town, you will often have the feeling that you are on the set of a famous series or film. Having succumbed to the curiosity that has been played out, you can easily get lost in the maze of small alleys.
Platz Street, which is often called Stradun, will serve as an excellent landmark - this is the main street of the historic city center, paved with limestone and framed by large old houses. It is noteworthy that all the buildings here were built according to one architectural plan.
This is because after a devastating earthquake and fire in the XVII century, a citywide decree was issued on the design of urban buildings. On the Day of St. Blasius (Blaise), which is annually celebrated in Dubrovnik on February 3, a festive procession takes place along Platza Street in honor of the patron saint of Dubrovnik.
Address: Old Town, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
During the strong earthquake of 1667, most of Dubrovnik was destroyed. However, thanks to the developed reconstruction plan, the prosperous city was restored. The rows of baroque houses and shops lined up along the main street of the historic center of Dubrovnik are the result of the long-term implementation of this carefully thought-out planning.
On the picturesque Stradun Street you can buy original souvenirs, enjoy ice cream in one of the cafes located right on the sidewalk, or join the townspeople who like to walk here in the evenings. In addition, on this street there are many city monuments, including the famous bell tower of the 15th century - it stands on the Lodge Square, at the very end of the street.
Address: Stradun, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
Cathedral of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary
The Catholic Cathedral of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary is one of the largest architectural ensembles of Italian Baroque in the city. Among the many reasons to visit this cathedral of the Diocese of Dubrovnik is to see priceless works of art in its interior.
On the main altar of the temple is a triptych depicting the Ascension of the Virgin Mary - it dates from the early 1550s and belongs to the brush of the great Renaissance artist of Titian. On the side altars you can also see some impressive works by Croatian and Italian artists of the same era.
The treasury of the cathedral presents a whole collection of religious artifacts dating from the 1000s to the 1700s. Among the most valuable of them, the relics of the patron saint of the city of Dubrovnik - St. Blasius (Blaise).
Address: Dubrovnik Cathedral, Ulica kneza Damjana Jude, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
This central square of the Old Town has long been a favorite meeting place for residents and guests of Dubrovnik. Here you will see many historical buildings and monuments. One of the most striking sights on the Lodge Square is the famous Orlando Column, designed by the sculptor Antonio Raguzino.
Another famous historical building is the bell tower, dating from 1480 - the alarming ringing of its four bells warned the inhabitants of the city about the danger. Among other architectural objects of the Lodge Square that are of considerable interest: the Church of St. Blaise with a beautiful Baroque facade and a collection of priceless works of art in the interior, a 15th-century clock tower with ancient chimes, the Main Guardhouse, and the beautiful Small Onofrio Fountain.
Address: Luža ulica, 20000, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
Cableway in Dubrovnik
The best way to enjoy the breathtaking panoramic views of the Old Town in Dubrovnik is to climb to the top of Mount Srd along the ultra-modern cable car, the only one on the entire Adriatic coast. The landing station is located near the old city walls, and the climb to the top takes only 3-4 minutes.
In addition to the observation deck, at the peak of Mount Srd you will find a cozy restaurant, a snack bar, a souvenir shop, as well as a small historical museum and a memorial dedicated to the defense of Croatia during the war of the 1990s. Hiking enthusiasts can get to the mountain peak along a pedestrian path, winding and sometimes quite steep.
Address: Dubrovnik Cable Car, Ulica kralja Petra Krešimira IV, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
From the height of this 412-meter hill, the Old Town of Dubrovnik looks much more unusual - like a miniature model of himself or as an illustration on a book page. From here you can see the whole of Dubrovnik and Lokrum, as well as the Elaphite Islands, filling the horizon line.
Due to such a favorable location and wide view, Mount Srd played an important strategic importance during the military operations of different eras - in the 1810s and 1990s. The exposition of the museum, located on the top of the mountain in the Imperial fortress, once built by Napoleon, tells about this.
The most convenient and fastest way to get to the mountain peak is to use the cable car. You can also get there by car (following the signs) or by shuttle bus.
Address: Srđ, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
The Princely Palace is located on the main square of the Old Town - the historic district of Dubrovnik. In addition to the fact that this palace served as the residence of the elected prince of the Dubrovnik Republic, it housed a conference room of the city authorities, prison cells, a courtroom, an armory and even a powder magazine.
Like other ancient buildings of Dubrovnik, the originally built medieval palace was repeatedly reconstructed and rebuilt over several centuries. The princely court is notable for the fact that its architecture harmoniously interweaves elements of different styles - Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque.
Currently, the Palace Museum houses the City Museum, which presents a collection of paintings by Italian and Dalmatian artists. The interiors of the 17th-18th centuries were recreated in several rooms of the Princely Court.
Address: Rector’s Palace, Ulica Pred Dvorom, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
Located on a high cliff overlooking the Adriatic Sea, Lovrienac Fort was built as a separate defensive fortification to repel enemy attacks both from land and from the sea. The erection of the original structure dates from around 1301. The fortress is a triangular-shaped structure with three stepped terraces - they had to be built because of the different cliff heights at the base of the fort.
The fortress was so impregnable that a garrison of only 25 people could defend it. Fort Lovrienac is currently a popular tourist attraction in Dubrovnik. Various cultural and sporting events are often held here, from the world-wide series of cliff-diving competitions (diving from a cliff) to local productions of Shakespeare's Hamlet.
In addition, one of the most memorable scenes of the popular series Game of Thrones was shot in this fortress.
Address: Lovrijenac, Ulica od Tabakarije, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
Pile City Gate
The city gate of Pile is the busiest place at the entrance to the Old Town of Dubrovnik, surrounded by a fortress wall. In fact, they are double - the outer gate, erected in 1537, has an arch, which is built into a semicircular fortification in the form of a tower. The internal gates of the 15th century, decorated with a statue of St. Blasius (Blaise) - the patron saint of Dubrovnik, lead to Stradun Street.
The drawbridge in front of the double gates is no longer lifted overnight with a system of winches and counterweights - the entrance to the city is open around the clock. Sometimes locals, dressed in old guard costumes, pose in front of tourists for photography.
Address: Pile Gate, Ulica Vrata od Pila, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
Fortress of St. John
The fortress of St. John is located in the southeastern part of the Old Town and is part of the city defensive fortifications protecting the port of Dubrovnik. For hundreds of years, Dubrovnik was attacked by pirate and other enemy ships, so the locals came up with a tricky way to defend the city.
After an alarm, they lifted a massive iron chain running from the fortress of St. John to the quay of Kassa in the port to damage the ships of the enemy. On the first floor of the fortress tower you will see a small aquarium with marine inhabitants of the Adriatic Sea, and on the second and third floor there is an interesting Maritime Museum dedicated to the history of shipbuilding, navigation and maritime trade in Dubrovnik.
Address: Tvrđava Svetog Ivana, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
Onofrio's Fountain (Great Fountain)
In the 15th century, Dubrovnik authorities decided to take measures to provide the city with fresh water. To this end, the Neapolitan architect Onofrio Giorgiano della Cava was invited to the city. It was entrusted with a difficult task - the construction of an aqueduct and several city fountains. The aqueduct - one of the first water pipelines of that time in Eastern Europe, was brought to a mountain source in the neighboring Shumet Valley. Another fountain end point was a large fountain.
Two fountains, created by della Cava in Dubrovnik, bear his name - Big and Small Onofrio Fountain. The most impressive of them is the Big Fountain, which is located on Stradun Street in front of the Church of St. Savior. This is a large-scale building with 16 faces decorated with carved inserts. The fountain is crowned by a huge dome created by Milanese artist Petar Martinov.
Even today, the purest spring water coming from the same mountain spring flows from several functioning fountain taps.
Address: Large Onofrio’s Fountain, Poljana Paska Miličevića, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
This Catholic monastery, located near the city gate of Pile at the western end of Stradun Street, houses a unique pharmacy - one of the three oldest functioning pharmacies in the world. Most of the originally built monastery was destroyed during the strong earthquake of 1667, only the Roman cloister and monastery gardens survived - they look almost the same as 500 years ago.
The Gothic portal of 1498, richly decorated with carvings, has been preserved in the church building itself. The monastery library contains a rich collection of rare ancient books, and in the large Renaissance hall you can see works of religious art, paintings by old masters, gold items and other priceless exhibits.
The monastery pharmacy, founded in the XIV century, offers visitors herbal lotions and elixirs, prepared according to old recipes.
Address: Franciscan Church and Monastery, Poljana Paska Miličevića, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
Banje Beach is considered one of the most convenient in its location - it is located near the Old Town, at the eastern city gate. In addition, it offers amazing views of the old fortress walls of Dubrovnik and the picturesque island of Lokrum. One part of the pebble coast is a paid beach, and the other is free, public (there is always a more lively atmosphere).
Holidays on Banje Beach are a great way to escape from the sweltering heat after exploring the many attractions of Dubrovnik's Old Town. Here you can play beach volleyball, futsal, water polo, or just relax on a sun lounger while sipping a soft drink.
Address: Banje Beach, 20000, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
Old port of Dubrovnik
The old city port, located in the eastern part of Dubrovnik, is protected by two marinas: Porporela, built in 1873, and the much more ancient Kasse marina, built in 1485 from massive stones laid on wooden foundations. During the heyday of navigation and maritime trade in Dubrovnik, forts were built around the perimeter of the harbor to protect city ships.
Today, the old port of Dubrovnik is both a tourist attraction and a starting point for trips to the beaches of the nearby island of Lokrum. Porporela pier, equipped with benches, is a popular place from where you can enjoy the picturesque surrounding views during the day and in the evening watch an unforgettable sunset over the Adriatic Sea.
Address: Dubrovnik’s Old Harbor, Ribarnica ul. 1, 20000, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
This rectangular-shaped palace, decorated with a beautiful loggia, has served as a public building since its construction in the early 1500s. At different times, the Treasury, a bank, a mint, and even a school were located here. The protruding covered portico in front of the building until the 20th century was the place where trade deals were made.
In the arch there is even an inscription warning merchants and traders not to cheat each other. Sponza Palace is one of the few Renaissance city architectural monuments that did not suffer from the devastating earthquake of 1667. Today, the city archive is housed in the palace building, which stores about 100,000 unique documents, including those dating from the 10th and early 11th centuries.
Address: Sponza Palace, Stradun, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
The clock tower with a bell tower on the Lodge Square, built in 1444, is one of the most famous sights of the Old Town in Dubrovnik. Its height is 31 meters. During the earthquake of 1667, the tower collapsed and bent over. The construction was completely reconstructed in the late 1920s.
In the renovated building, the only original detail preserved from the old tower is a huge bell. At the top of the tower, on either side of the big bell, you can see two bronze sculptures of bell-ringers - Baro and Maro.
They are part of the mechanism that makes the bell ring daily at noon. From the centuries-old stay in the salty sea air of the Adriatic, the figures of Baro and Maro have acquired a greenish tint, and now they are jokingly called "green men".
Address: Clocktower, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
Church of St. Vlah (Blaise)
The richly decorated baroque church of St. Vlach (Blaise) was erected on the site of a Romanesque-style church, which was badly damaged by an earthquake in 1667, and then burned down during a severe fire in 1706. The current building was built in the early 1700s according to the project of the Venetian architect Marino Gropelli.
This church is known as a city landmark because it belongs to the patron saint of Dubrovnik - St. Blasius, who, according to legend, helped prevent a sudden attack by the Venetian troops in the 900s.
Although St. Blasius was already dead by that time (executed by order of the ruler Agricola in the 300s), he appeared to the priest of the Dubrovnik Cathedral in a dream to warn him of an impending enemy invasion.
Address: Church of Saint Blaise, Luža ulica, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
Column of Orlando
This famous stone column with a flagpole, dating back to the 1400s, is located on the eastern outskirts of Stradun Street, right in front of the Church of St. Blasius. It is one of the main attractions of the Old Town and a favorite meeting place for residents and guests of Dubrovnik. The column is decorated with a statue of the medieval knight Roland (Orlando).
According to local legends, in the 800s this hero helped the Republic of Ragusa withstand during the long 15-month siege of the Saracen pirates, which allowed Dubrovnik to maintain its status of a city-state of free trade.
For this reason, the Orlando column is a symbol of freedom and independence of Dubrovnik, and during the annual city festival, the flag of an independent republic always flutters on the column.
Address: Orlando’s Column, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
If you want to take a break from the bustle of the city and visit numerous attractions, go to the picturesque island of Lokrum, which is located near Dubrovnik. Boats regularly sail from the port to the island during the day, and the trip takes only 10-15 minutes.
The island of Lokrum is almost entirely covered with a dense pine forest, which makes it pleasant to walk on foot. Walking paths lead to the coast with rocky coves and perfectly clear water. In the summer season, a restaurant with a wide selection of dishes and drinks is open in the old Benedictine monastery.
Address: Lokrum, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
Arboretum Botanical Garden in Trsteno
This beautiful botanical garden, located on a hillside near the sea, was created in the 1400s and is one of the oldest arboretums in the region. During the heyday of maritime trade in Dubrovnik, local sailors brought a variety of plants from all over the world.
Among the rarest specimens, a pair of majestic plane trees brought from the East - these unique plants are 500 years old. The arboretum is part of the estate in the small village of Trsteno, located 18 km north of Dubrovnik.
A quiet picturesque park with sculptures, fountains and an old aqueduct designed to collect water - a great place for unhurried walks! Arboretum is also known for shooting scenes in the gardens of the Royal Harbor in the third and fourth season of the Game of Thrones series.
Address: Arboretum Trsteno, Trsteno, Croatia.
Old Town Market
This oldest Dubrovnik market is located on the famous baroque square of Gundulic. It got its name because of a bronze monument to the famous Dubrovnik poet of the 17th century Ivan Gundulich. For many centuries, every morning the square has turned into a colorful, vibrant market. It sells fresh vegetables and fruits, dried local delicacies and other products.
Within walking distance of the old city harbor is the popular fish market. Every day, when the trade on the square comes to an end, punctual cats carefully watch the shopkeepers, and a market employee takes out a bucket of corn to feed the pigeons that are sitting on the neighboring roofs and patiently wait for refreshments.
Then dozens of birds soar into the sky - this is a kind of signal for local residents that it is time to go to the square to sit at a table on the terrace of one of the many cafes.
Address: Old Town Market, Gundulićeva poljana, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
To the south of Dubrovnik, between the waters of the Adriatic and the mountain range lie steep hills and the deep Konavle valley. It extends south to the border between Croatia and Montenegro. Traveling through the Konavle Valley is a great way to get acquainted with the sights of the administrative district of Dubrovachko-Neretvansk.
In addition, from some points of walking and cycling routes, there are breathtaking wide prospects for Dubrovnik, a historic city located between the Adriatic Sea and this rather deserted landscape.
Address: Konavle, Croatia. specify
Gallery of military photography
A visit to this exhibition makes a lasting impression. The War Photo Limited Gallery is overseen by Wade Goddard, a New Zealand photojournalist who worked in the Balkans in the 1990s. The purpose of the exhibition is to show people all the horrors of war: fear, hunger, blood, pain and death.
The gallery presents the best works of the most famous military photojournalists of the world. On the top floor there is a permanent exhibition - these are photographs telling about the war in Yugoslavia. Temporary exhibitions include the work of photojournalists covering various military conflicts - ongoing and already ended.
Address: War Photo Limited, Antuninska ulica, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
Dominican Monastery and Museum
This impressive building is one of the main historical architectural monuments of Dubrovnik. Gothic and early Renaissance styles predominate in the building concept. The Dominican monastery is also known for its rich library and museum, which houses an impressive collection of religious art.
The construction of the monastery began in the XIV century - at the same time as the construction of city walls, therefore, with its severe appearance, the monastery is more like a fortress than a religious complex. The interior of the temple acquired its present form in the 15th century.
All architectural elements were created by local artisans, including the indoor gallery, which was designed by the famous Florentine architect Michelozzo di Bartolomeo.
Address: Dominican Monastery, Ulica Svetog Dominika, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
Church of St. Ignatius de Loyola
This Jesuit church, located in the southern part of the Old Town, was built between 1699 and 1725. It rises at the top of a wide staircase and is a vivid example of Baroque architecture.
Inside, magnificent frescoes depict scenes from the life of St. Ignatius de Loyola, the founder of the Society of Jesus (Jesuit Order). The church is adjoined by a former Jesuit college - Collegium Ragusinum, now the Diocesan Classical Gymnasium.
Address: Saint Ignatius, Poljana Ruđera Boškovića, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
If you are tired of the heat and tours of the Old Town, take a walk in the small shady park Gradac. In this quiet pine oasis, you will most likely find only a few walking townspeople or some fan of the Game of Thrones series looking for a location for the shooting of the Purple Wedding.
In the park you can just relax, read a book or enjoy the picturesque views of the Old Town, Lovrienac Fort and Danche Beach.
Address: Gradac Park, Ulica don Frana Bulića, Dubrovnik, Croatia.
Photo and description
Sponza Palace is one of the architectural monuments of Dubrovnik. The palace was built under the leadership of Pascoe Milicevic in 1516-1521. The palace building is made in the Gothic style with elements of the style of the early Renaissance. In 1667, Sponza Palace was seriously damaged by an earthquake. Reconstruction lasted for 30 years.
It was originally supposed that the palace would be the residence of the prince. Until 1808, the palace building fulfilled precisely this role, when the republican form of government in Dubrovnik was liquidated by the French marshal Auguste Marmont.
In the days of the republic, the building was used for other purposes. At different times, there were the Treasury, customs, school, mint and bank. The Academy of Consonants was also located there, which was a collection of highly educated people and poets who conducted scientific and literary discussions in the palace of Sponets.
To date, the State Archives and the City Museum are located in the Spontz Palace, which contains a large number of documents valuable in terms of history. Here is a monument to Miho Pratsat, a wealthy sailor who bequeathed his fortune to the republic in the 17th century. This is the only monument that was erected during the time of the Dubrovnik Republic.
Sponza Palace is located on the left side of the Lodge Square. Since 1950, the Dubrovnik Summer Festival has been held annually in front of the palace.