When have you deviated plans to visit a new place?
Rijeka was not part of our original plans, but as we travel long-term, our plans change. We landed a house sitting opportunity in Switzerland, so we had to go from Montenegro all the way back north to get there. So we stopped in Zadar to visit Plitvice Lakes and then moved up to Rijeka where we would eventually depart our beloved country Croatia.
Dubrovnik Croatia has multiple harbors, and we liked each for different reasons. One is the west harbor which has some stunning views of both the fortress and the city walls. It is also Blackwater Bay in the popular Game of Thrones series. There is also a second main harbor near the Pile Gate on the south end of town. It has many benches and is a wonderful place to watch a sunset or even a storm. We love being near the water and enjoyed both places.
Fortress Lovrijenac is a special place in Dubrovnik with loads of history. This is the best spot to get a photo of the entire walled Old Town of Dubrovnik Croatia. The views from this fort are pure eye candy with the turquoise blue waters below and the old city walls. It also is a Game of Thrones filming location where they filmed the scenes of the Red Keep in King’s Landing. We loved it!
We visited Rector’s Palace in Dubrovnik in late November. This palace is a Game of Thrones location, so we had to stop by. The inner stairway and columns were used in the scene where Daenerys meets the spice king in Quarth. Today, the palace is home to a cultural history museum where we got a taste of the city’s history. It also hosts musical events in a concert hall.
Dubrovnik was the place I wanted to visit most in Croatia because it is a walled city. This means you go through a gate on either end to enter, and once you are inside, the Old Town sits within the walls. It is an amazing place to visit on its own and walking the city walls is just magical.
Serbian Forces bombed the Belvedere Hotel during the Croatian War of Independence in 1991. The ruins of this hotel remain today, undeveloped, and overtaken partially by nature. We had a local show us around the structure, and what we found inside is beyond words. All windows are broken, and the inside was clean of any carpeting. The elevator shafts are completely blown out and graffiti lines many of the walls inside. Debris is scattered everywhere, and some areas are barely passable. What a crazy place to see!
Being in Croatia, we had to see all the Game of Thrones filming locations we could. Especially in Dubrovnik, which was where most of the King’s Landing scenes were filmed. It was fun comparing the real-life places to the places in the film. It made visiting Croatia more of a scavenger hunt, but that was part of the fun. Let’s start with the place where the Mountain and the Red Viper battled to the death (Header photo). It didn’t end well! We are going to focus on some spots in Dubrovnik for this post.
What characteristics make you fall in love with a city?
Dubrovnik was a major draw to go to Croatia in the first place, and we found it to be way more interesting than we thought. We loved the medieval charm of this walled city and also having it nearly empty in November. The narrow alleyways, street cats, museums, fortresses, city walls, and troubled history made it a must-see destination. Dubrovnik is located on the Adriatic Sea and is a stunningly beautiful place to visit any time of year.
The Ethnographic Museum is a cultural history museum depicting the traditional way of life of Croatians in the 19th century. It contains over 6,000 objects of the ethnographic heritage of the Dubrovnik region. These include things like holiday dress, textile handcrafts, items related to economic activities, traditional households, and rural architecture. In Dubrovnik, we wanted to see as many museums as we could since we had free admission with our Dubrovnik Card, so this was a perfect way to spend the afternoon.
What town have you explored that was nearly empty?
We heard that Trogir Croatia is known as little Dubrovnik, as it has a lot of the same things, but is smaller. It is one of the most well preserved medieval towns and is stunningly beautiful. It is situated on a small island just off the Croatian mainland. The island is surrounded by walkways with boats and fishermen. The town is walled with several gates, just like Dubrovnik.