“Those who are looking for the paradise on Earth should come and see #Dubrovnik” – George Bernard Show
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Dislike crowds of tourists in summer? Prefer to feel unique spirit of place? Looking for Mediterranean winter sunny days? Looking for a perfect European winter weekend gateway in a city full of fascinating history? Want to immerse yourself into the Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque in the silence of off-season vibe? Craving for a few days escape from cold, wet, foggy or snowy winter?
If your answer is yes, you should consider to spend some winter time in Dubrovnik, ‘the Pearl of the Adriatic‘.
1. Winter in Dubrovnik: Walk along the old city walls
Winter walk on the top of Dubrovnik old city walls offers unique pleasurable perspectives of the old city, protected by the walls, forts (the Lovrjenac, Revelin, St. John, Minčeta and Bokar) and gates (the Pile and Ploče), without hardly bearable summer heats and crowds of tourists.
Gazing into the blue serenity of the Adriatic during a leisure walk around 1,9 km (1,3 miles) long old city walls in the winter sun with barely anyone near you feels like one of the best revitalisation treatments you have ever experienced.
2. Winter in Dubrovnik: Tranquility of the Old Harbour
Winter tranquility of Dubrovnik’s Old Harbour where the only ‘noise’ make small fishermen’s boats and sporadic chats of local fishermen seems like a visual manifestation of the greatest mediation for relaxation.
Watching the Adriatic sea in the winter sun on Porporela pier in Dubrovnik’s Old Harbour, while having all the benches only for yourself, is a true blast of serenity.
3. Winter in Dubrovnik: Leisure atmosphere of Stradun
Opposite to tourist rush in summer, a leisure winter walk in Stradun (or Placa) allows you to truly indulge in one of the most beautiful pedestrian main streets in the World.
Bathing in the Mediterranean sun, the 300 meters (1.000 feet) long renaissance promenade surrounded with lined baroque stone houses decorated with green shutters is the main people’s gathering place and a perfect place for slowly sipping coffee while watching people passing by.
4. Winter in Dubrovnik: Stroll around the palaces
Winter is the ideal time for strolling around palaces of Dubrovnik and enjoying in those living evidences of past times and appreciating their elegant exteriors.
Sponza palace is a gothic-renaissance palace recognisable for its beautifully carved ornamentation above the upper Venetenian-Gothic windows. Once the Customs House of Republic of Ragusa is todays State Archive.
Rector’s palace (Knežev door in Croatian) is a gothic-renaissance palace as well. It was the seat of Republic’s government and rector (premier). Nowadays the palace seats the Cultural History Museum.
4. Winter in Dubrovnik: Marvelling at the architecture of churches
Quite and contemplative atmosphere of winter in Dubrovnik makes you to marvel at gothic-renessaince architecture of the St. Savour church and baroque architecture of the St. Blaise and Jesuit churches and the Cathedral.
St. Blaise is the saint patron of Dubrovnik. The main church dedicated to St. Blaise is placed at the end of Stradun. St. Blaise stands in the middle of the three statues on the top of church as the personifications of Faith and Hope. The Orlando’s (or Rolland’s) Pillar, a column depicting the medieval knight bearing in his arms a sword and shield as a symbol of the city’s freedom, stands in front of the church.
5. Winter in Dubrovnik: Visiting the Dominican and Franciscan monasteries
Meditative ambients of the monasteries are felt much more intensively during serene winter days.
Harmonious cloister arches of the Dominican monastery take you back to the gothic and early renaissance aesthetics.
If you want to see how the renaissance pharmacy looked like, then you should visit the Franciscan monastery of Little Brothers (Male braće in Croatian). The monastery proudly holds the third oldest pharmacy in Europe. It has been offering some good-quality products prepared by ancient Franciscan’s recipes for over 700 years, what consequently makes it the oldest working pharmacy in Europe.
6. Winter in Dubrovnik: Onofrio’s fountain
Winter walks in sunny Dubrovnik seek for the refreshment. You could satisfy your thirst with drinkable water out of Onofrio’s fountain, the most famous fountain in Dubrovnik.
Onofrio’s fountain is a part of the city original water supply system built in the 15th century. The aqueduct has been bringing water to the old town of Dubrovnik from a spring 12 km (7,3 miles) away from the city walls for over 600 years.
7. Winter in Dubrovnik: The old city’s market at Gundulićeva Poljana
Early winter mornings are the best time to buy some fresh products from the locals on the open-air market at Gundulić Square (Gundulićeva Poljana in Croatian). Treating yourself with some fresh vegetables and fruits and seductive scents of the Mediterranean flowers sold on the stalls makes you feel like a local.
8. Winter in Dubrovnik: Exploring the old city’s streets
Most of all, winter in Dubrovnik with no tourist rush enables you to explore the narrow and steep medieval cobbled streets of old town unchanged for the ages and to soak up completely the timeless beauty of Dubrovnik.
As a result, experiencing the rich history of Dubrovnik by feet in winter allows the magnificence of its silent streets to steal your heart and inevitably make you wish to come back to Dubrovnik.
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P.S.: Do you know what’s the worst thing that could happen to you in Dubrovnik in winter? Any clue??
To end up on a filming set!
Turning Dubrovnik into Nottingham for Robin Hood’s filming in February 2017