Dubrovnik was declared a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1979 because of the stone protective walls which stretch for almost two kilometres around the city. I’ve walked on the walls twice and the views from the top are simply stunning and are certainly well worth the climb. I’ll warn you now, though, it can be quite slippery underfoot so make sure you have sensible footwear on if you plan to do this – trust me, I know this from experience. Walking in a pair of incredibly pretty, but highly impractical sandals is best avoided lest you end up with a sore bum and even sorer sense of pride!
My favourite part of walking the walls is the feeling standing atop the protective city walls and gazing at the hundreds of bright terracotta rooftops contrasting with the brilliant blue of the sky. Dubrovnik was badly affected by shelling and was besieged for around seven months during the breakup of Yugoslavia in 1991; yet little over 20 years later it shows none of the scars of these previous wounds.
I ventured into the quiet, narrow side streets of the city to explore some of its unique shops and stumbled upon pictures placed there by locals showing the extent of the damage the city endured. There were small captions below the pictures detailing how these people had lost their homes and businesses in the shelling and this helped put into perspective for me the bravery of the local people who helped rebuild this gorgeous city.
There are many great boat trips you can take in order to explore the area and local beaches. I found this to be the perfect way to escape the heat of the city in the summer. I took a trip with a local man as our captain who told us some great stories of the history of the city. The sight of the light-coloured stonewalls of the city rising out of the glittering turquoise waters of the Adriatic is a wonderful juxtaposition. The Elaphite Islands are very close to the city, three of which are inhabited, with one featuring a nudist beach if that’s your kind of thing!
One of my favourite spots in the city is a little ice cream parlour located on the main street. Inside they have a massive amount of colourful, tempting and truly delicious ice creams. The staff are incredibly friendly, and the guy behind the counter loves to show off and throw the ice cream in the air before impressively catching it atop your cone. Very impressive!
Something which I loved whilst I was in Dubrovnik was watching the sun set over the Adriatic. The sunsets here are stunning; creating vibrant, beautiful colours in the sky. Watching the sun appearing to melt into the calm waters whilst sipping on a cocktail… surely there’s no better way to end a day in Dubrovnik.