Dubrovnik Pearl of the Adriatic

A perfect port

This beautiful medieval city has grown into one of the most popular tourist sites in Croatia. It offers an ideal setting for a coastal retreat. The city of Dubrovnik is believed to have existed since the 7th century. While the roots of the city's origin range from Roman refugees to Greek explorers, the city has endured many catastrophes and invasions. For a complete history go to https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dubrovnik

The city has reinvented itself several times, most significantly after the entire town burned down in 1296, and after an 8.0+ earthquake in 1667. In addition, the successive invasions and takeovers by marauding armies resulted in the medieval walls being redesigned, and thickened to better withstand the next invaders.

A Town Embattled
The patron saint found as a sculpture above the entrance passage is always depicted as holding the city in his hands, as a symbol of protection. Similar sculptures are found elsewhere around the town.

The ravages of war continued through WWII when hundred of bombs fell on the city and resulted in burning 7 buildings, the city withstood once more. This 800 year old church even survived the Croatian War for Independence— the pitted walls show evidence of shrapnel scars. Our guide was only 4 years old when the war began. She remembers only that her family would hide from the bombing until they evacuated to Germany as refugees for the next ten years.

Our guide, Ana, explains the map showing locations of the hundreds of bombs and fires.
In 1991, this house fell victim to the bombing as it burned down. The home belonged to an artist who, upon restoration, added his pictorial commentary, "Lest We Forget."
Holiday Splendor
While the town is filled with churches, Catholicism is the most common religion. The spirit of Christmas was everywhere in town as they prepared for their various Christmas pageants and celebrations. Oranges are commonly used in decoration and confections using the locally grown "bitter" oranges.
Churches churches churches
A Benedictine Monastery is still home to a few monks. The central courtyard was intricately decorated with carvings, fruiting shrubs, and a well. The monastery also housed a collection of religious artwork and jewelry which also provides historians insight as to the development of the city after invasions, earthquakes, and wars.
King's Landing
If you are a Game of Thrones fan, these castle walls may seem familiar, it's because many scenes were also filmed in Dubrovnik. In fact, we learned that they were filming the day we visited, but did not know where the film crew were working.

Credits:

Visiting the medieval Croatian town of Dubrovnik.

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