Find Yourself in Dubrovnik, Croatia: The Pearl of the Adriatic

By Jenna Maunsell

by Elysian Magazine

Tucked away along the coast of Croatia lies the city of Dubrovnik, the pearl of the Adriatic – a city so unique, so special, that it has gained international renown. Dubrovnik sees more than 1 million tourists annually, not counting the 700,000-plus cruise ship passengers who pass through each year.

Visitors are drawn from all over as its beauty has stood the test of time. As you step under the gate and into the city, it is almost as if you have entered into another world. There is something so timeless about the striking sights of Dubrovnik. It is home to charming shops, exquisite restaurants, and alluring views. It seems that wherever you look, there is something that will catch your eye and captivate your attention.

In this city’s authentic beauty, there is a great level of fragility. Dubrovnik covers a small portion of land, a little over 8 square miles. Yet, somehow, it is responsible for such a staggeringly high number of tourists. The city is incredibly reliant on tourism and life beyond its city walls in order to thrive – in order to even survive. Any small inconvenience or mishap has the potential to shock the delicate system that exists within the walls.

The fact that Dubrovnik continues to prosper year after year is a testament to its elegance and charm. It should be a city struggling to get by. However, if you walk around Dubrovnik in the heat of the summer or the crispness of spring, what you find is an abundance of people and the everpresent buzz of activity. You find an awaiting adventure – historic walls to climb, inviting shops to explore, breathtaking views to capture.

One of the main draws of Dubrovnik is the distinct walls that surround the city. It is estimated that they were constructed in the 13th century, and these very walls still encircle the city today. Visitors are able to purchase a ticket and walk the walls. As you step one foot in front of the other along the walk, it is easy to understand why this is a main attraction.

Simply put, there is nothing more worthwhile. No picture or video has the ability to capture the magnificence; it is one you must experience. You have the ability to overlook the whole city and its iconic red roofs, or turn the opposite direction and admire the untamed Adriatic Sea. Yet these storied walls are more than just a pretty sight. They stand testament to the extraordinary history of the city and the country of Croatia. They serve as a reminder of when the walls provided much needed protection for the survival of Dubrovnik’s people.

There is much to learn and there are many tour guides willing to share the unforgettable history of this place with you. Home to the filming of the Game of Thrones, Dubrovnik’s popularity and international reputation are only going to continue to grow.

The city itself stands as a sort of paradox – so obviously walled off, but so consistently filled with foreign visitors, a city that should have failed but has not, a city so fragile but so beautiful. It is so easy to see the appeal of Dubrovnik.

The pearl of the Adractic in its fragility and beauty awaits your visit.

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