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Croatia has become one of Europe’s most popular tourist destinations thanks to its unique cuisine, great weather and wonderful beaches. It helps that as a developing country everything is far cheaper here, so shopping, sightseeing and eating out are all very wallet-friendly. The port of Dubrovnik is now a regular stop for cruise ships exploring the Adriatic Sea and the city’s old town is a designated UNESCO World Heritage Site and a major attraction in itself.
Tourism in Dubrovnik only took off in the late 19th century when the first luxury hotels began to make an appearance, but since then the city has gone from strength to strength, offering tourists exciting festivals to enjoy, cultural monuments to view and some of the finest beaches in the Mediterranean to stroll along. If your chosen cruise is heading into the port of Dubrovnik for a stopover, then you’re in for a real treat.
Walls of Dubrovnik
Walls around a city aren’t a new concept, but the walls around Dubrovnik are particularly spectacular. Reaching for around 2km in length, they circle the city in a series of thick blocked walls and fortified lookout points. They were one of the few walls constructed in the Middle Ages that were never overcome by invading armies and these days they’re a major tourist attraction in Croatia and offer incredible views of both the historic old town and the stunning Adriatic coast.
An island that sits just off the shore of Dubrovnik, Lokrum is a popular location for a day trip and is home to botanic gardens, a fortress, an old monastery and even a nudist beach. The best way to get here is by ferry or speedboat from the port.
The Dubrovnik Summer Festival
Every summer the city spends 45 days enjoying one of the biggest festivals in Europe. With live music, concerts, games and plays, this is a great way to experience the real culture of the city. Daily events start early and finish late, and the whole city has a carnival feel.
Not traditionally known as a shopping destination, Dubrovnik might surprise many visitors who find their way to its eclectic streets. It has an interesting array of markets and boutique shops where travellers can pick up a range of European trinkets and some well-known fashion labels.
Gulliver near the centre of the city is an upscale boutique selling bags, belts, footwear and plenty of sparkling, original accessories. It’s a great place to pick up some locally made gifts and souvenirs, and with a few cafes around it, it’s in a popular part of the city for shopping. Maria’s is the place to visit for high class designer clothing, with name brands like McCartney, Miu Miu and Givenchy filling its shelves.
Croatian food is a wonderful blend between the freshest ingredients of the sea, inspiration taken from its Mediterranean surroundings and the heartiness that pervades most Eastern European cooking. The Croatians have a love of simple food executed well, and local restaurants offer some wonderful dishes you won’t find anywhere else. When you disembark your cruise in the port of Dubrovnik, seek out some pljeskavica, a local specialty of spiced mince patties sold on street corners and in local bakeries.
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