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    The Bell Tower in Dubrovnik

    by hopang Updated Apr 18, 2015

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    The Bell Tower is one of the most important landmarks in the city of Dubrovnik especially in the Old Town. It has history that dates back to the middle of the 15th century. It was not damaged by the strong earthquake in the 17th century. Due to the poor condition of the tower with danger of crashing down, it was demolished in the early 20th century and replaced by the present tower in 1929 designed by Pasko Baletin. The Tower was constructed in Renaissance style with some Gothic elements.

    The Bell Tower is 31 metre high and it certainly dominates the skyline of the Old Town. Two bronze figures of the soldiers named Maro and Baro (Zalenci) are visible on the top of the tower. They strike the bell every hour. The colours of the figures have turned to green due to years of exposure to rains and sunlight. As a result many locals call them the green men of Dubrovnik.

    The Bell Tower in Dubrovnik The Bell Tower in Dubrovnik The Bell Tower as seen from the Old Port The Bell Tower as seen from the Harbour The Bell Tower as seen from Stradun
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    Bronze Statue of Marin Drzic in Dubrovnik

    by hopang Updated Apr 18, 2015

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    The bronze statue of Marin Drzic (1508 - 1567) is located just in front of the Rector's Palace (Cultural History Museum) on the eastern side of the Old Town in Dubrovnik. Many visitors believe that by rubbing his nose you will receive good luck as can be seen on our main photograph the brightness of his nose. The statue of Marin Drzic with the background of Rector's Palace certainly provides good photo opportunity to visitors.

    Marin Drzic was a popular Croatian playwright and prose writer. His works cover many fields from poetry and pastorals to comedies. He was also known as Croatian Shakespeare. Among his popular comedies were Dundo Maroje and Pomet written in 1550s. Croatian Parliament declared the year 2008 as the Year of Marin Drzic to celebrate 500th anniversary of his birth. There is even an avenue in the capital city of Zagreb named after him. An annual drama prize in Croatia is also named after him.

    Bronze Statue of Marin Drzic in Dubrovnik Bronze Statue of Marin Drzic in Dubrovnik Bronze Statue of Marin Drzic in Dubrovnik
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    Orlando Column in Dubrovnik

    by hopang Updated Apr 18, 2015

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    Orlando Column is located at Luza Square on the eastern end of Stradun in the Old Town of Dubrovnik. The column was sculptured by local sculptor Antun Dubrovcanin in the early 15th cenutry. Once served as a market place during medieval era, the square around the column had been used foe ceremonies, rallies and even public punishment. Today the area around the column is used for the Summer Festival in the city of Dubrovnik. It is also a very popular meeting place for the locals as well as tourists.

    Legend has it that Orlando (Knight Roland as he was called) saved the city from the Arab pirates during the invasion of the city in the 8th century. Thus the Orlando Column was erected in his honour.

    A figure of a medieval warrior holding a sword in his right hand and a shield in his left hand was carved into the column. The top of the column was used to hoist flag of Republic of Ragusa in the earlier days. More recently in the war of 1990s, a white flag with the word "libertas" on it was hoisted from the column to celebrate freedom of the city.

    Orlando Column in Dubrovnik Orlando Column in Dubrovnik Orlando Column in Dubrovnik
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    Church of St. Blaise in Dubrovnik

    by hopang Updated Apr 18, 2015

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    Church of St. Blaise (St. Blasius) is the most beloved church in the city of Dubrovnik and in our opinion it is certainly one of the most beautiful churches in the city. It was constructed in honour of St Blaise, a patron saint of the city (formerly Republic of Raguna) since the 10th century. He saved the city from invasion by the Venetians.

    The Church has history that dates back to the 14th century when the church was built in Romanesque style. It was badly damaged during the earthquake in the 17th century and subsequently destroyed in the fire in the early 18th century. The present structure in Baroque style was built several years after the fire in the early 18th century. The Church was designed by Venetian architect Marino Gropelli on the commission of Dubrovnik Senate based on the plan of Greek cross with a large dome on top of the roof. A large staircase was added later in front of the facade leading to the main entrance to the Church.

    On the main altar inside the church stands a gold-plated silver statue of St. Blaise holding a 15th century model of medieval Dubrovnik in his left hand. This is the most valuable work of art in the history of Dubrovnik. It was sculptured by an unknown artist unfortunately. Interestingly and miraculously this statue was not damaged in the earthquake in the 17th century and the fire in the early 18th century when the church building was almost totally destroyed. Among other valuables saved from the earthquake and the fire were two stone statues of St. Blaise and St. Jerome sculptured by Nikola Lazanic from Brac. This Church was also not seriously damaged during the war of 1990s.

    The Church of St. Blaise has become one of the most famous venues for wedding ceremony in the city. Festival of St. Blaise Day is celebrated on the 3rd of February every year in the city of Dubrovnik.

    Church of St. Blaise in Dubrovnik Church of St. Blaise in Dubrovnik Facade of Church of St. Blaise Facade of Church of St. Blaise Front view of St. Blaise's Church in Dubrovnik
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    Cathedral of Assumption of Virgin Mary Dubrovnik

    by hopang Updated Apr 18, 2015

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    The Cathedral of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary (also known as St. Blaise's Cathedral) in Dubrovnik is the most important Catholic cathedral in the Balkans. It has history that dates back to the 7th century when it was a Romansque style basilica. The basilica was reconstructed in the 12th century believed to be financed by Richard the Lion Heart. However the basilica was totally destroyed in the earthquake in the 17th century. The present Baroque style structure was constructed in the early 18th century complete with a magnificent dome which can be seen from many parts of the city of Dubrovnik especially from the City Walls and cable car towards Mt. Srd.

    The interior of this white stone Cathedral has three high naves and the Cathedral Treasury contains approximately 200 gold and silver reliquaries and the relics of St. Blaise who was one of the 14 holy helpers of the Cathedral. The statue of St. Blasie can be seen on the facade of the Cathedral. Opening hours to the Cathedral are between 8.00 a.m. and 7.00 p.m. daily. The Cathedral is closed during the lunch hours between 11.00 a.m. and 3.00 p.m. daily. Admission to the Cathedral is free.

    Cathedral of Assumption of Virgin Mary Dubrovnik Cathedral of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary Cathedral of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary
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    City Walls walking tour in Dubrovnik

    by hopang Updated Apr 5, 2015

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    A trip to the Old Town of Dubrovnik is incomplete without stepping onto the city walls of Dubrovnik. This self-guided walking tour of the almost two kilometre long city walls is certainly one of the highlights of our trip to Dubrovnik. The city walls together with the Old Town of Dubrovnik were listed as UNESCO's world heritage site in 1979.

    The city walls have history that dates back to the Middle Ages although most of them were constructed between the 10th century and the 17th century. These limestone city walls were said to be unconquerable. The thickness of the walls vary from 1½ metres to as thick as 6 metres. The highest point of the walls is approximately 25 metres at Minceta Tower at the northern end built in the early 14th century. The city walls are actually reinforced with at least 15 towers, a few of them circular in shape whereas the others quadrilateral, 5 bastions and a large Fortress of St. John.

    There are three entrances to the city walls and the most common one is near the Pile Gate beside Franciscan Monastery. The intital climb is steep and you need to be reasonably fit to climb the steps to the top of the city walls. Once you reach the top, walking along the walls is quite easy and you walk only one way, i.e. in anti-clockwise direction. You will almost certainly be rewarded with commanding and astonishing bird's eye view of the Old Town and its surrounding area especially the crystal clear Adriatic Sea.

    The total length of the walls is approximately two kilometre long. It is advisable to walk the whole length of the walls to have as much view as possible of the Old Town and the surrounding area. It takes between 1 and 1½ hours to walk the whole length of the walls and it really worths the walk. Be prepared to bring along good walking shoes. There are certainly lots of photo opportunities up the city walls.

    We came to the city walls in early spring with light cool breeze. It was not too hot and not too cold. Nevertheless you may get hungry and thirsty fast, so it is advisable to bring some food and drinks along with you. There are places where you can sit down and relax, have some food and drinks and continue with your walk.

    The city walls were very well preserved over the centuries until today and is still functional even today. Admission fee to the city walls is 100 kunas (approximately €13.00). Opening hours are between 9.00 a.m. and 5.00 p.m. daily during the winter months and between 9.00 a.m. and 7.00 p.m. daily during the summer months.

    City Walls walking tour in Dubrovnik Amazing view; note the bird in the center of photo The powerful Fort of St. John in Dubrovnik Bird's eye view of the Old Town of Dubrovnik Minceta Tower, symbol of unconquerable city
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    Cultural History Museum in Dubrovnik

    by hopang Updated Apr 4, 2015

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    The Cultural History Museum located at Rector's Palace is another impressive museum not to be missed while visiting the Old Town of Dubrovnik on your vacation. It is certainly one of the best museums in the city of Dubrovnik. Lots of permanent collections are exhibited on the ground floor, mezzanine floor and on the first floor. There is a courtyard and a dungeon located on the ground floor. A bronze bust of Michaeli Prazatto, one of the prominent Regusans of Dubrovnik Republic can be seen on the courtyard.

    Numismatic collection of Dubrovnik coins and watches are exhibited at Mezzanine floor. Other objects exhibited in the Museum on the ground and first floors are weapons, portraits, uniforms and furnitures etc. The Museum has been located inside the Rector's Palace since the year 1872.

    The Rector's Palace was designed by Italian architect Onofrio de la Cava and was constructed in the early 15th century. It has Gothic Renaissance style of architecture with some Baroque elements added later. Rector's Palace is the former seat of the highest power in the Republic of Dubrovnik. It is certainly a cultural monument of the highest category and has been listed under UNESCO's world heritage site.

    Opening hours to the Museum are between 9.00 a.m. and 4.00 p.m. daily during the winter months and between 9.00 a.m. and 6.00 p.m. daily during the summer months. You may purchase a combined museum ticket for just 80.00 kunas (approximately €10.00) per adult. As in many other museums in the city of Dubrovnik, photography and video recording are not allowed inside the Cultural History Museum except at the courtyard on the ground floor where photography is permitted.

    The Rector's Palace in Dubrovnik Cultural History Museum in Dubrovnik The courtyard of Rector's Palace at ground floor Inside the Rector's Palace in Dubrovnik The bronze bust of Michaeli Prazatto, Ragusan
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    Maritime Museum in Dubrovnik

    by hopang Updated Apr 4, 2015

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    Maritime Museum is probably the best and the most famous museum in the Old Town of Dubrovnik. It is located on the first two floors of Fortress of St. John near the Old Port. The Museum focus on maritime shipping and has exhibits containing some 4,000 maritime artifacts and sea life such as models of ships, weapons, flags, log books, nautical instruments etc. It covers the maritime history of Dubrovnik and its surrounding region from the 16th century until the present time. There is a library in the Museum containing some very rare materials.

    You may purchase a combined museum ticket which costs just 80.00 kunas (approximately €10.00) which also entitles you to visit several other museums such as the Cultural History Museum at Rector's Palace also in the Old Town. If you prefer you may also purchase a Dubrovnik Card which entitles you free admission to many museums in Dubrovnik.

    Opening hours to the Museum are between 9.00 a.m. and 4.00 p.m. during the winter months and between 9.00 a.m. and 6.00 p.m. during the summer months. Unfortunately photography and video recording are strictly not allowed inside the Museum as in many other museums in the city of Dubrovnik.

    Maritime Museum in Dubrovnik Signboard to Maritime Museum in Dubrovnik Entrance to Maritime Museum in Dubrovnik
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    Korcula

    by solopes Updated Mar 9, 2015

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    Accessible from several points, this fantastic island is a must see, forbidden to miss.

    Korcula is a place to visit and to go, or a place to stay and...to rest.

    Korcula - Croatia
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    The Island of Hvar.

    by Maurizioago Updated Mar 1, 2015

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    Several years ago I spent some days on Hvar island. I stayed in Hvar-town; the main town. I went there from Split by hydrofoil. The journey took about one hour and half.

    Hvar-town has a large main square with some shops and a lot of cafes. In the square there is the Cathedral of Saint Stjepan. It was built in stages during XVI and XVII centuries. The arsenal, with a theatre built in 1612 on the upper floor. A fortress; perched on a hill overlooks the square. It was built in the XVI century and restored in 1579 after a gun powder explosion. Now it houses a cafe and a small museum with a collection of amphorae.

    I also visited two nice villages on Hvar Island; Jelsa and Starigrad.

    Hvar-town. Hvar-town Window in Hvar-town. Jelsa
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    Split

    by solopes Updated Dec 10, 2014

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    The second biggest town of Croatia is in a privileged situation to work as a hub of the visitors of central Croatia.

    Sibenik, Krka, Trogir, Makarska and Hvar are less than one hour distant, and the town of Split itself has plenty of reasons to attract visitors, but I must confess that we had only a couple of hours to it.

    Split - Croatia
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    Orebic

    by solopes Updated Dec 10, 2014

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    No, unless I missed something, Orebic is not very important and beautiful.

    It only shares with Ston the circumstance of being the towns of the Peljesac peninsula, where I caught some of the most beautiful views of all the trip.

    Orebic - Croatia Orebic - Croatia
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    Ston

    by solopes Updated Dec 10, 2014

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    Located in the wonderful Peljesac peninsula, this small town of Ston surprises by its long and strange walls, from where the sights spread over the salt mines.

    Ston - Croatia Ston - Croatia
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    Makarska Region

    by solopes Updated Dec 10, 2014

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    Makarska is referred as the Croatian Riviera and it is beautiful, but we just rushed across it.

    It was enough, anyway, to see its landscape and seashore (not so pretty as Peljesac, in my opinion!).

    Makarska coast - Croatia Makarska coast - Croatia
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    Hvar

    by solopes Updated Dec 10, 2014

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    One of the favorite spots for youngsters, Hvar it's a pleasant place, with good conditions for bathing.

    We only saw the main city, but my sons and friends spent a couple of days in the opposite side of the island, in a cheap and very nice place (So far, I couldn't convince them to write in VT!)

    Hvar - Croatia
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