Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Wednesday, June 10, 2015 – Dubrovnik, Croatia

Port Background.  Dubrovnik is located on the Adriatic Coast of Croatia (Dalmatian Coast). At one time, Dubrovnik was the capitol of the wealthy city-state of Ragusa (a powerful rival to Venice).  During the Balkan War in 1992, Dubrovnik suffered heavy bombardment – today, the damaged city has been rebuilt and is now a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  It is one of the best remaining medieval walled cities.

It’s another beautiful day – this time in Dubrovnik, Croatia.

Queen Victoria is docked at the Gruz Cruise Port in the shadow of the very interesting Franjo Tjudman Suspension Bridge (sorry no picture).   The cruise port is only about a mile from Dubrovnik.

20150610_Dubrovnik pier (Small)

View from the Port

Both of us are on the same tour today - “Dubrovnik, Dominican Monastery, and Walking Tour of the Old City” plus free time.  Our plan is to meet up during the free time portion of the tour to check out Dubrovnik on our own.

I boarded my comfortable bus – not overly crowded so I was able to get a window seat and take photos.  Within minutes we were passing by the Old City Walls – recall that some of the location shots for “Game of Thrones” are shot here in Dubrovnik.

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The Old City Walls

The bus continued past the city (on our way to a scenic stop) and I could get a good view of the ubiquitous red roofs of Dubrovnik.

20150610_Dubrovnik (Small)

The highway followed the coastline south of Dubrovnik.  There are a few homes nestled in the slopes.


20150610_ Adriatic 2 (Small)

As we continued, we passed by a large island, Lokrum.  The name means “bitter fruit”.  The island is popular with the locals – it has some nice eco sites, a castle, and a small salt pond (a miniature Dead Sea).

20150610_Lokrum (bitter fruit) Island (Small)

Lokrum Island

Lokrum Island is only about 600 meters from Dubrovnik (although it looks further away depending on the viewing location).  Looking back along the road we just drove on, we could get a great view of Dubrovnik – the marina and the old city.

20150610_ Dubrovnik 1-1 (Small)

20150610_Dubrovnik Adriatic (Small)

20150610_ Dubrovnik Adriatic 1 (Small)

Dubrovnik from the Highway

The bus turned around and headed back to the city.  Our first stop was the Dominican Monastery.  The Dominican Monastery was started in the early 13th Century and the current structure completed in the 14th Century. 

20150610_Dominican Monastery (Small)

The Courtyard of the Monastery is very scenic.  Our two tour groups met up in the Monastery so I was able get a nice picture of Ellen.

20150610_ Dominican Monastery courtyard (Small)20150610_ET dominican monastery (Small)

The Courtyard and Ellen

There is a sculpture in the monastery’s church that has a connection with Chicago.

20150610_ Ivan Meštrović sculptor Cathedral (Small)


Ivan Meštrović is a Croatian sculptor, who is also known for his statue of “Spearman”, a native American on horseback, in Grant Park. 

After our visit to the Monastery, our tour proceeded down the main walkway, the Placa or Stradun.  At the end of the long street is the famed clock tower with its animated figures.  Striking the bells are Maro and Baro, the zelenci (green) twins (turned green by the effect of the salt air on the bronze).  They came out but I did not hear any bells ring.  There is also an astronomical clock on the tower.

20150610_Placa or Stradun Dubrovnik (Small)

20150610_clock tower (Small)

20150610_clock tower 1 (Small)

The Clock Tower at the end of the Placa

The Main Square was our next destination.  This square is home to the Custom’s House (with its Venetian look), the Rector’s Palace, and the Dubrovnik Cathedral.

20150610_main square (Small)

20150610_Rectors Palace (Small)

Rector’s Palace

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Custom House

20150610_Cathedral 1 (Small)

Dubrovnik Cathedral

At this point, we were on our own, complete with a rendezvous time at the Ploce Gate.  The shops were interesting but it was a hot day and some nice gelato sounded very good.  We did some comparison shopping and wound up in an interesting “Soda Fountain” type place (the girls working there were all dressed like they worked in a Fifties soda shop).  Our gelatos were a bargain at 1.25 Euros and they were delicious and huge.

20150610_Cono in Dubrovnik (Small)

Enjoying a Gelato in Dubrovnik

As we waited for everyone to gather at the meeting spot, we got some nice shots of the harbor and Adriatic.

20150610_harbor (Small)20150610_harbor 2 (Small)20150610_harbor 3 (Small)

Soon, we were back on the ship.  We were able to get a late lunch/snack and spent the rest of the day reading (it was warm on the deck with no breeze so we found a nice. cool spot inside).

20150610_kindling w a view (Small)

Kindling with a View

After another nice dinner, we opted not to see the show tonight (Flautist – Suzanne Godfrey) but catch some of the entertainers around the ship.  A very nice way to spend the evening.

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