Area: 143,35.35 km2
Elevation: 3 mnm
Climate and weather: borderline humid subtropical and Mediterranean climate
- average annual: 16,4 °C
- average of coldest period: January, 10 °C
- average of the warmest period: August, 25,8 °C
- average May-September: 17,9 – 23,8 °C (64,2 – 74,8 °F)
Population (2011): 42,615
Mayor: Mato Franković
Time zone: CET (UTC+1)
Summer (DST): CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code: 20000
Dailing code: +385 (0)20
Nicknames: “Croatian Athens”, “Pearl of the Adriatic”, “Thesaurum mundi”
Known as the Pearl of the Adriatic, it lies in the extreme south of Croatia, basking in glorious Mediterranean sunshine for much of the year. A fairytale fortress of beautiful Baroque, Gothic and Renaissance churches, aristocratic palaces, red-roofed townhouses, magnificent monasteries and fascinating history, it is almost impossible to feel anything but uplifted and inspired here.
Wander the bustling boutiques, markets and bars, savour freshly-caught seafood while gazing out to sea at sunset; walk along the iconic walls, or take a cable car up to Mount Srđ for the most spectacular views in all of Dubrovnik. Today a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the Old Town and its towering walls rise above a 13th-century main street that literally sparkles in the sun. No wonder so many consider Dubrovnik a precious gem. In fact, the origins of the Croatian language and its classic literature can be traced back here, and the city remains an epicentre of culture, art, music and science. All this, and surrounded by a brilliant-blue seascape, pretty beaches and idyllic islands.
History and culture
Dubrovnik is a city with rich history stretching back to the 7th century when its beginnings are recorded—its best-known history is related to the period of the aristocratic Republic of Dubrovnik, which endured through to the late 19th century. Throughout its history, Dubrovnik has been the site of the construction of monumental edifices, now a part of the city’s tourist favorites.
The city walls, the Minčeta and Lovrijenac fortresses, St. Blaise Church and other sacral buildings, the large and small Onofrio fountains, Orlando’s column and the town bell tower are just a few of the famed monuments visitors can tour.
City of theatre and the arts
Many of the municipal events, like the Dubrovnik Summer Games, the Libertas Film Festival and the Julian Rachlin & Friends music festival have won Dubrovnik the moniker of the City of Theatre and Arts. Visitors can enjoy stage plays and other cultural events at the Marin Držić Municipal Theatre, Rector’s Palace Culture and History Museum, Rupe Ethnographic Museum, Maritime Museum, Cathedral Treasury, Museum of the Monastery of the Friars Minor, Museum of the Dominican Monastery, Dubrovnik Natural History Museum and the Modern Arts Museum.
City walls and towers
Dubrovnik’s city walls were built in the 13th century. They are 1,970 metres long and allow you to walk around the entire perimeter of the Old Town center. The walls also incorporate several towers: Minčeta Tower to the north, Bokar Tower to the west, Sveti Ivan (St. John) Tower to the southeast, Fort Revelin to the east and Fort Lovrijenac on the crag outside the walls. The stroll, offering a splendid view of the open sea, the island of Lokrum and the Elaphiti Islands, takes about two hours, with the adventure starting on the west side of Stradun where the entrance is located.
The main street in the Old Town is an interesting attraction accessed from the west through the Pile Gate and from the east by the Ploče Gate. From the very entrance, visitors will come across a number of impressive monuments such as the Onofrio fountains and Orlando’s column as well as a bevy of bars, restaurants and municipal events.
The fort is located outside the city walls on a 37-metre high crag and is considered a symbol of the liberty of Dubrovnik. It is frequently referred to as the ”Gibraltar of Dubrovnik.” There is the inscription at the entrance ”Non bene pro toto libertas venditur auro” (Liberty is not sold for all the treasures of the world). In the summer, Fort Lovrijenac is the stage for many theatre plays during the Dubrovnik Summer Games.
This Jewish temple in the city is also a museum and it is considered to be the oldest Sephardic synagogue in the world. The synagogue was built in the 15th century and features exhibits dating from the 16th to 18th century.
Dubrovnik’s best-known church is the one dedicated to St. Blaise (Sveti Vlaho), the city’s patron saint, standing on Luža Square at the site of an older Romanesque church dedicated to the same saint. The church survived powerful earthquakes, fires and Yugoslav Army shelling during the Homeland War. The feast day of St. Blaise is celebrated every year in February, closing with a mass in the church.
The Church of the Holy Salvation (Sveti Spas), the Church of the Assumption of Mary and the Church of St. Dominic are traditional sacral edifices in Dubrovnik offering a unique window into the city’s history and architecture.
Mount Srđ rises to the north of Dubrovnik. Its peak is at 413 metres above sea level with Fort Imperial, home to a Homeland War memorial museum. All sorts of weaponry used in the attack launched from this site against Dubrovnik are shown in photographs and video documentation.There is a beautiful panorama overlooking the entire town, the open sea and the islands. Since 2010, the most interesting way to get to the top of Srđ has been to take the renovated cable car—in just a few minutes you can enjoy the amazing view and a coffee or other refreshment on the terrace: take your time to enjoy the unique panorama and the cool breeze.