Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Our Visit to "The Pearl of the Adriatic"

Old City Dubrovnik
Early Wednesday morning on October 23rd, I got out onto the deck for my morning walk and watched as we entered the port of Dubrovnik, Croatia.  The strategic location of the old walled city on the Dalmatian Coast made it an important maritime power beginning in the 13th century.

The location of Dubrovnik -  from: http://www.lonelyplanet.com/maps/europe/croatia/
An aerial view of the Stari Grad from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dubrovnik
 A map of he walled old city within Dubrovnik. From: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Dubrovnik_1995.jpg
Along with Montenegro, Croatia was another new country for Ron who had been to 38 countries before this trip. He had long wanted to see this region.  His grandfather and grandmother had immigrated to the USA from Slovenia, just to the north of Croatia.  Although we would not get to Slovenia on this trip, we were now on the southern tip of the beautiful Dalmatian Coast.  There is great beauty, culture, art, and history here as well as a long history of conflict to control this strategic military and trading port on the Adriatic Sea. The weather was sunny and warm as we took a shuttle bus to the old walled city of Dubrovnik already crowded with tourists. This is another UNESCO World Heritage Site :
"The 'Pearl of the Adriatic', situated on the Dalmatian coast, became an important Mediterranean sea power from the 13th century onwards. Although severely damaged by an earthquake in 1667, Dubrovnik managed to preserve its beautiful Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque churches, monasteries, palaces and fountains. Damaged again in the 1990s by armed conflict, it is now the focus of a major restoration programme co-ordinated by UNESCO.
Cathedral of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary

Sponza Palace

I entered the Sponza Palace where there were the National Archive of War Photos, including a room with photos of the martyrs of Dubrovnik who died defending the city against the Serbian and Montenegrin shelling for seven months in 1991-92.  116 defenders lost their lives including the famous poet, Milan Milišić, and 650 artillery rounds hit the buildings in the walled city.

The Palace has a gallery of contemporary paintings as well.

 I walked the walls of the city and took these pictures from above the city and sea:

Many people still  live in the Old City

This is a convent school

Some of the wall is quite steep for walking and it was a hot day

I purchased some embroidered tablecloths from vendors along the way. The work was quite lovely.

A new table runner for my dining room table

A new covering for our guest room table

Detail of the flowers

After about 30 minutes, I left the wall at the halfway mark and went down into the city where Ron was waiting for me.  We had a delicious lunch of seafood including a calamari salad (yummm!) at an outdoor cafe.  We had a request from a daughter to bring home some chocolate so I purchased some chocolate bars and coffee for gifts before returning to our shuttle bus.

We returned to the ship and set sail by 5PM. We had a full day and 2 nights at sea ahead of us.  On October 24th, we dressed up for a formal dinner in the dining room and a Dessert Extravaganza late night

Getting ready in our cabin  for Formal Night in the Rotterdam Dining Room

Ron in the dining room October 24th

Our friends, Bob and Sharon from Maine, joined us

After listening to some of the shipboard entertainment, we made our way to the Dessert Extravaganza at 10PM.  It was a treat to the eyes, but we were too full from dinner to eat the beautiful treats.

A beautiful display but we couldn't eat more than a few bites

Next stop: Naples, Italy.


  1. Nice to see the beautiful photos of Croatia. My nephew and his wife were there recently and raved about how wonderful it was.
    Looks like the trip of a lifetime. Can't wait to see your photos of Italy, which is on my bucket list.

    1. Yes, this was a trip of a lifetime for us! So happy we could do it.

  2. Ah! What a wonderful trip, Vicki. I enjoyed ever single post. The farthest east I've been in Europe was taking some high school students to Italy and Greece (history you know) some twenty years ago now. I'm definitely adding the Dalmatian Coast to any future trips....:)