My father was born in Dubrovnik, and in my experience most people tend to know the place as the medieval walled city of the Adriatic, or in recent times from the Game of Thrones. Imbued with rich history, vibrant culture, art, architecture, tradition, food and wine; there’s so much more to sight-SEA beyond the city walls. So, here are some interesting facts about the ‘Pearl of the Adriatic’ that you MAY NOT KNOW!
Dubrovnik is located on the southern Adriatic coast of Croatia.
HOW TO GET THERE
Dubrovnik Airport is located in Čilipi, and is approximately 22km from Dubrovnik city centre.
Airport shuttles are available to and from Old Town, as well as the main bus station in the city centre. It takes approximately 40 minutes to get from Čilipi to the main bus station.
Dubrovnik is also accessible via car for those travelling from Split Airport.
Just be mindful that cars are not allowed in the Old Town, and must stay parked outside the city walls.
What you MAY NOT know…
- Dubrovnik is highly regarded for its wealth and skilled diplomacy. Over the centuries it heavily relied on its diplomacy as opposed to military force.
2. Dubrovnik was formerly known as the independent state of Ragusa. The city still prides itself on its motto ‘Non bene pro toto libertas venditur auro’, a Latin phrase translated as ‘Liberty is not sold for all the gold in the world’.
3. The Republic of Ragusa (Dubrovnik) founded Mali Ston in 1333, a place internationally regarded for its Oysters. Ston also contributed a great source of wealth for the Republic, with thanks to its ‘white gold’ aka SALT beds.
4. The Dubrovnik Republic (Ragusa) was one of the first in Europe to banish slavery, back in 1416. In fact, it was one of the first internationally to do so.
5. George Bernard Shaw the Irish playwright, coined Dubrovnik as the ‘Pearl of the Adriatic’ and said ‘those who seek paradise on Earth should come to Dubrovnik’.
6. In the early 15th Century, the Dubrovnik orphanage was opened, one of the first of its kind in the world!
7. Dubrovnik is a city of renowned writers, artists and poets. Marin Držić, born during the time of the Republic of Ragusa in 1508, is known as the greatest Croatian playwright of all time. There is a bronze statue of him located just off Stradun, the main city street in Dubrovnik.
8. A 700 year old pharmacy is still operational in Dubrovnik Old Town. It is one of the first established pharmacies worldwide. The pharmacy is located within the Franciscan Monastery grounds, and is available to the public.
9. The Republic of Ragusa was officially the first internationally to recognise the independence of the United States, back in the late 18th century.
10. A fun one to end on, and I just had to share! Maro is one of the little green men above the Dubrovnik bell tower on Stradun who strikes at noon, dating back to the 15th century. It’s a hard one to miss!
There you go, ten facts that you MAY NOT know… a testament to the resilience, enduring spirit and ingenuity of Dubrovnik, Ragusa and its people. Visit Dubrovnik to find out more!