Old Port, Dubrovnik
After walking into the magnificent cathedral ...as you come out of it turn right and head towards any archway or street with a view of water ...this brings you to the Stara Luka or old port area which can be easily missed, despite the seaward location of the old town. As you look at the water to your LEFT is Revelin Fortress which looks like a small castle & to the RIGHT is the semicircular St Johns Fortress. Here their is a Maritime Museum & an Aquarium.
We arrived to Dubrovnik by boat from the new port to the old one! The journey took approximately 40 minutes and the views were stunning of the old port and the fortifications.
The Old port was constructed during the 14th Century where the northern entrance to the 'Ribarnica' was built. The southern entrance is through Ponta Gate leading right to the Rector's Palace. The 'Ribernca' was where an open-air fishmarket was held in the main square. The Old port where a lot of commerical and activity maritime was carried out until the 1500s. In order to protect the city there has been a lot of modifications to port over the centuries.
Today, you can get catch a boat to one the nearby islands and there are sea regattas that are held certain times of the year. Nearby there is the Maritime Museum and the Ethnographic Musuem which are highly recommended.
Dubrovnik's Old Port is clearly too small for anything but pleasure and fishing craft. But during the Middle Ages, it was among the busiest ports on the Adriatic Sea, making the city wealthy and powerful. Heavily fortified, it endured sieges. Today, it's one of Europe's best-preserved medieval ports.
The Old Port of Dubrovnik is the launching area for cruises around the islands off Dubrovnik. Everyday, shiploads of tourists from cruise ships disembark at the Old Port to take in the sights of Dubrovnik.
I thought this was one of the loveliest areas of the old town. It had several shady seats, great views towards the old town, boat trips, ice-cream sellers and a swimming area. What more could you want?
There are tons of fishing boats in the port on the southern side of the old town. This is a great place to come, grab a bench, and watch the fishermen fix their boats, take in their catches, and just live their lives. You can also check the port out from atop the city walls, there are lookout seats on the top that are great for sunsets.
The Republic of Ragusa earned its wealth trough trade and surely the harbour was a key factor in the economic system. Many structures between Fort St. John and Revelin fort are still preserved, including a 17th century quay which is still in use. The port authority building was turned into a restaurant and apartment house while former wharfs have become restaurants as well. Among them, I would recommend “Lokanda Peskarija” (see restaurant tips).
Though most ships have moved to the modern port of Gruz, the old harbour is still in use as marina as well as landing points for the ferries to Lokrum island.
A breakwater called Porporela evolved into a nice place to sit down and enjoy the view on the harbour and Lokrum island. There are several benches and nearby swimming opportunities (walking along the city wall). Expect that this place is quite popular during the summer season.
The old port is right next to the old town. There are lots of tours running out of here, including a glass bottom boat tour. You can also just simply walk around there and look at the waves crashing on the nearby rocks or at the clear water of the marina.
St. John's Fortress was meant to be the main defense of the city harbour and one of the most important defense fortifications of the city. The first tower of the fort was built in this place in the first halh of the 14th century.