Fiona Smith explores Croatia’s magnificent walled city and its neighbouring Adriatic islands
Sunlight dances on the deep blue ocean between the forested island of Lokrum and the white-stoned, red-roofed buildings that make up Dubrovnik Old Town. George Bernard Shaw asserted, ‘Those who seek paradise on Earth should come to Dubrovnik,’ and the view afforded from the terrace at Villa Orsula, which was once home to local nobility, is appositely blissful. The boutique hotel is located just a five-minute stroll from the iconic walled city – a Unesco World Heritage site. Perfumed by the scent of wild jasmine, its grandiose architecture includes the gothic-renaissance sixteenth-century Sponza Palace, the Venetian-gothic Rector’s Palace and the baroque Church of St Blaise.
A more contemporary cultural touchstone is the television series Game of Thrones, extensively filmed round the old town. While lowering the average age of visitors, it heralded an influx of mega cruise ships, the passengers of which can choke up the cobbled streets during high season.
It seems everyone these days is suffering from wanderlust, because travel nourishes the soul and all that jazz. Cool, but there are a few spots you might want to steer clear of.
You can Instagram all you want about travel ‘being not a place, but a new way of seeing things’, but that doesn’t change the fact that some of the world’s more popular tourist destinations are being overrun.
I know you were there before it, like, became all commercial bru, but if you are planning an overseas trip this year CNN has a few words of advice.
They’ve named 12 places you might want to steer clear of, but we’ll just pick five that South Africans tend to gravitate towards.
And no, Cape Town doesn’t make this list, although we could probably use a few less visitors as we plough towards Day Zero.
With UNESCO threatening to take away its World Heritage status due to extreme overcrowding, Dubrovnik has decided to take drastic measures in order to cut tourist numbers.
Stars Wars: The Last Jedi will transport you to a few brand-new worlds. Good news: You can visit these stunning new locations on planet Earth.
While Stars Wars: The Last Jedi will delight fans with plenty of familiar locations, it also transports you to a few brand-new worlds. And, luckily for us mere mortals who don’t live in The Galaxy, many of these stunning new locations were filmed on planet Earth. The following are a few that you can visit in real life. And if you’re dashing off on your own adventure, know the one thing you should never do with your boarding pass.
1. DUBROVNIK, CROATIA/CANTO BIGHT
Star Wars and Game of Thrones have a lot more in common than the simple fact that they are both extremely successful franchises that take place in other worlds.
Fans can visit King’s Landing and Canto Bight in one shot.
Fans are already lining the streets to become the first to see the new Star Warsfilm, “The Last Jedi,” when it hit theaters tonight. And while the film will most certainly be a huge success, we’re betting that many of you may experience a bit of déjà vu when watching it.
That’s because one of the film’s new worlds, the casino planet of Canto Bight, is actually the very same location as Game of Thrones’ King’s Landing, according to Nerdist.
As Nerdist further explained, the revelation came in a little behind-the-scenes video for the new movie where director Rian Johnson discusses the movie’s filming locations, which included the walled city of Dubrovnik, Croatia, which is also the set of the HBO hit’s capital of Westeros.
From fresh oysters to sea-aged wine, there’s a lot more to Croatia than just seeking out Game of Thrones locations.
Ask any Games of Thrones fan about the show’s real-life locales, and they will likely mention Dubrovnik, Croatia, which is the stand-in for the bloody capital of Westeros, King’s Landing. But there’s more to Croatia than just passing references to the Lannisters.
Here’s what first-timers should know about Croatia.
Yes, Cersei Lives Here
Dubrovnik’s Old City is defined by its massive stone walls and ports. Originally built in the 10th century, the Old City walls survived earthquakes and wars to become a UNESCO World Heritage site. You can walk along the tops of the city walls alone or on guided tours.
Those fortress walls guard a jewel box of a city, filled with exceptionally preserved Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque buildings, palaces and plazas.
I really liked Dubrovnik. Once I looked past the tourist crowds and focused on the history and long list of things to do in Dubrovnik, I had a great time there. Dubrovnik has been a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1979 and it’s also known as the “Pearl of the Adriatic”. Although the city itself isn’t particularly large, you won’t be bored there.
I’ve tried to narrow the list down to the most awesome things, like the famous city walls, visiting Game of Thrones locations or the Old Town. Here goes:
DUBROVNIK OLD TOWN
Of all the things to do in Dubrovnik, I liked the Old Town most. This is where you’ll find most of the Game of Thrones locations and also the city walls. I joined a Game of Thrones tour, and after that I went about on my own.
If you’re a fan of the HBO mega-hit series Game of Thrones, you know that [spoiler alert] Winter is here. But make your way to Dubrovnik, Croatia — the citywide set for the show’s fictional capital of King’s Landing — and you’ll find scant evidence to support the claim. A stunningly preserved 16th Century fortress seated against the Adriatic, the Old City is quickly becoming one of Europe’s hottest tourist destinations. Yet it remains surprisingly accessible to the American traveler. For now. In honor of GoT’s long-awaited return this weekend, VinePair presents you a portal to pure fantasy: a real life King’s Landing crawl to call your own.
Dubrovnik holds some 50,000 people, but only 1500 permanently reside within the fortified walls of the Old City — a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1979.
Known as ‘the pearl of the Adriatic’, famous for its history, and a UNESCO World Heritage site – Dubrovnik, Croatia is by no means underrated. Its harbor is the quintessential Croatian image: crystal blue waters, red rooves, cream walls, cobbled streets and medieval stone. It is a beautiful city with an enticing energy. Although it is the southern point of the country, every traveler in Croatia is eventually heading here. Let Dubrovnik lure you in, and prove that it lives up to the hype.
Experience the Old Town of Dubrovnik, Croatia
The medieval city walls define Dubrovnik. They contain the old town, preserved in history yet saturated in energy. The past is respected, but not boring. Young travelers are drawn to it just as much as mature couples and older holidaymakers. The beauty of the old town is timeless.
WITH GREAT LOCATIONS AND FRIENDLY PEOPLE, CROATIA IS ONE OF THE WORLD’S HOTTEST DESTINATIONS. THE ANCIENT WALLED CITY OF DUBROVNIK IS ONE OF ITS MOST IMPRESSIVE PLACES TO STOP BY.
With an impressive fireworks display that lit the sky in capital Zagreb, Croatia joined the European Union at midnight on July 1, 2013. Ascending to the ranks of the grouping was strong motivation to avoid future conflicts ‘ apart from the future economic benefits ‘ some technocrats said.
Some might even boldly say that Croatia joining the EU is like a ‘homecoming’ after it achieved post-war stability during the last two decades. Between 1992 and 1995, this erstwhile corner of Yugoslavia endured bloody conflicts.
During the Croatian Independence War, sieges were laid and city walls defended by citizens; at the southern tip of the country, Dubrovnik was the prize everyone wanted.
It’s 8 a.m. and Dubrovnik, Croatia, is bathed in a soft, salmon pink. This sunny winter day is warming up nicely as kids shuffle through long shadows on their way to school, store shutters roll up and cafe coffee machines are brought up to steam. It’s a joy to almost have the medieval “Pearl of the Adriatic” to myself.
Twenty minutes before, I’d joined mumbling, bleary-eyed workers on their daily Libertas Bus commute from Lapad Peninsula. By arriving early, I beat the impending daily passenger deluge released onto the city streets from cruise ships, all arriving at roughly the same time, in Gruz Harbor. That’s a lot of people for this dense old town crammed into 1.2 miles of stout limestone ramparts.