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Dubrovnik.

City on the Adriatic Sea

sunny

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A Steep Dubrovnik Street.

Dubrovnik.

I have frequently seen the famous picture over Dubrovnik old town and old port and thought it looked stunning, so it has long been on my list of places to visit. However, as I started to research it, I read about it being unbearably hot, wall to wall people and over-priced. As it got nearer time to visit, I almost did not want to go. I thought how disappointed I would be when it did not live up to my expectations. In the end Dubrovnik was fine. It was a beautiful old city. There were places to go to escape the crowds and the crowds were not as bad as either Hong Kong or Rome where we went last Christmas. It was hot but there were fountains where you could sprinkle cold water on your face and fill your water bottle. You were also never far from places where you could leap in the sea for a refreshing swim. During our visit to the old town we paid to walk the walls, but other than getting there and back spent nothing else. It really does not deserve the bad press it gets.

Dubrovnik is one of these places which, although I had researched it and had a map with all the sights marked on it, as soon as I got there I just wanted to wander aimlessly. Why? Well, because it is all lovely. When you have the strength to cope with crowds and sun visit the flat centre, as you tire of that seek out a quiet shady side street. Had enough of old buildings? Leap in the sea and cool off and relax for a while. It has it all.

We only had an evening and two full days in Dubrovnik. While there are many things that are easy to do, it was so hot we had to get out of the sun for a while during daylight hours to cool down and avoid sunstroke. We spent our time exploring Gruz where we lived, the old town, Cavtat and Babin Kuk.

Villa Amfora: Service could be better.

This accomodation is in Gruz. Exit the main bus station, cross the road. Facing away from the sea, go right and walk for about 10 minutes. The rooms are above the Villa Amfora Restaurant. When we arrived there was no-one manning the reception desk. We approached 3 people before we could check in. Eventually we were shown to our room which was clean and comfortable. The bed was comfortable, there was a fridge, two bottles of water were provided on the first day. There was no safe and no tea/coffee making facilities. I asked for a map of the local area, but they did not have one. We liked the Gruz area for restaurants. It was easy to get into the old town by taking bus number 1A or 1B from across the road near the sea. Buy your ticket from the Tisak booth and remember to stamp it on the bus. The Villa Amfora is close to bakeries and supermarkets. Our room was quiet at night and we slept well. The main negative about this place is that it is really a restaurant and the accommodation is very much secondary. There is no-one to ask for information. When I asked staff about buses to the old town, they claimed they did not know. I found out all the information I needed from the waitress in a much friendlier restaurant further up the street. We met the owner of the Villa Amfora on the last day of our stay when we checked out. I told him there should be someone manning the reception desk or at least a bell for summoning someone. It would have made a difference to us if the staff had been a bit more friendly and welcoming. We were put off right away from the disinterest shown when we checked in. I don't need people to be friendly or gushing, but to have to approach 3 members of staff before one bothers to check us in is unacceptable. Our other complaint is that our room was not cleaned on our second day despite the fact we were out all day. We returned in the evening to find clean towels left on the ironing board outside the door, but no attempt had been made to do anything in the room. This also put me off the place in a big way. As Gruz is an excellent location and the room was comfortable and quiet, this place could be really good with a bit more effort from the staff. We had intended to eat in the restaurant here too, as it is supposed to be good but again as we were not impressed with the staff did not do so. Address: Obala Stjepana Radica 26, Dubrovnik, 21000, Croatia.

Our hotel was in Gruz. We were quite happy with this area for a number of reasons. 1/ It was close to the bus station and we arrived by bus from Mostar. 2/ It was close to the port and if we had had longer, we could have easily sailed off to an island. 3/ It was easy to get to the old town by bus 1A or 1B. 4/ There were several good restaurants here. 5/ Gruz has a lovely little church and a pretty harbour. 6/ Gruz has several supermarkets and bakeries.

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Staying in Gruz.

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Staying in Gruz.

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Staying in Gruz.

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Staying in Gruz.

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Staying in Gruz.

Walk the City Walls.

It's hot and tiring and costs 90 kunas, but it is well worth doing because the views over the town and port are fantastic. I went up near the Pile Gate and exited at the same place. I could have exited earlier at 2 places. The whole walk took me 1 hour 15 minutes at a leisurely pace.

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City Walls.

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View from the city walls.

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View from the city walls.

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View from the city walls.

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View from the city walls.

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View from the city walls.

Big Onofrije's Fountain.

When you enter Dubrovnik at the Pile Gate you will see Big Onofrio's Fountain. Near Ploce Gate you will find Small Onofrio's Fountain. Their original purpose was for travellers to wash at before going into the city proper to prevent plague and disease. All these years later they are still useful for cooling down and refilling your water bottle. A true Godsend.

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Big Onofrije's Fountain.

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Big Onofrije's Fountain.

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Big Onofrije's Fountain.

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Big Onofrije's Fountain.

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Small Onofrije's Fountain.

Stradun.

Stradun is the main street of the old town. This street runs from the Pile to the Ploce Gate. It is a wide, sunny street lined with interesting buildings. It can be very crowded. It starts at the Big Onofrio Fountain and St Saviour's Church, passes Orlando's Column and ends at small Onofrio's Fountain, the bell tower, Sponza Palace and the old port.

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Stradun.

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Stradun.

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Stradun.

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Orlando's Column, Stradun.

The Old Port.

I thought this was one of the loveliest areas of the old town. It had several shady seats, great views towards the old town, boat trips, ice-cream sellers and a swimming area. What more could you want?

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Swimming at the Old Port.

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The Old Port.

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The Old Port.

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The Old Port.

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The Old Port.

The Rector's Palace.

This beautifully ornate building is located on Pred Dvorom near the Old Port and the Cathedral. there are some lovely carvings above the arches at the front.

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The Rector's Palace.

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The Rector's Palace.

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The Rector's Palace.

The Cathedral: Cathedral of the Assumption of the Virgin.

Dubrovnik's Cathedral is near the Rector's Palace. It is a pleasant building to sit in, take a rest and enjoy the peaceful surroundings. We visited more than once to escape the intense heat and have a bit of a rest.

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The Cathedral.

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The Cathedral.

St Ignatius Church.

Walk through the market on Gundulic Square up a stairway modelled on the Spanish steps and you will reach the beautiful and peaceful Church of Ignatius.

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Spanish Steps.

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Spanish Steps.

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St Ignatius Church.

Side Streets in the Old City.

One of the best things to do in Dubrovnik is escape to the quieter shadier side streets.

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Side Streets in the Old City.

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Side Streets in the Old City.

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Side Streets in the Old City.

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Side Streets in the Old City.

Fort Lovrijenac.

There is a good view of this lovey fort from outside the city walls near the Pile gate, but there is an even better view of it from the city walls.

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Fort Lovrijenac.

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Fort Lovrijenac.

Famous View Over Dubrovnik.

There is a famous view over Dubrovnik which I am very familiar with. I was not sure where to take it from.Then I had a look at Sandy Smith's VT page and she had the view and said she had seen it from the airport bus. We went to Cavtat for the day to make sure we passed that view and as I was getting ready to take it, on came the ticket inspectors. It took me ages to find my ticket and I almost missed the view all together ending up with not a great shot of it. I tried again on the way back - harder as we were then on the wrong side of the road. No worries we arrived by bus but were leaving by air so I could get it on the way to the airport. Guess what? The bus had painted windows - still I got a sort of check version of the view and I ended up buying the postcard. There is a viewing point on the way out of the town towards the airport where this view could easily be captured.

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Famous View Over Dubrovnik.

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Famous View Over Dubrovnik.

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Famous View Over Dubrovnik.

Washing.

I don't know what it is about washing lines, but give me a beautiful setting and I want to photograph them. I think it is the fact that it brings home that this place is a living inhabited place, not a museum. Anyway, there were plenty of great washing lines in the old town.

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Washing.

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Washing.

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Washing.

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Washing.

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Washing.

Babin Kuk.

We walked here from Gruz. It is just on the other side of the bay. On route we passed some vehicles used in the war. We also had a look at the beach area and had a swim. It was not great for swimming as there were too many boats, so we could not go out far and the water was not as clean as the other places we swam.There are good views of the bridge from here. Many hotels are here. The restaurants we passed here were noticeably more expensive than in Gruz.

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Babin Kuk.

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Babin Kuk.

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Babin Kuk.

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Babin Kuk.

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Babin Kuk.

Kittens.

OK, I admit I have a thing about kittens, but, tell me, who could resist this little chap? For a start he is so tiny and then when you look into this big, big eyes, your heart just has to melt. Absolutely adorable!

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Kittens.

Sunsets.

Dubrovnik has some lovely sunsets. These shots were not taken from a particularly lovely location even though I think they look attractive. They were taken from a car park as we walked back from a visit to a large supermarket not far from the bus station.

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Sunsets.

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Sunsets.

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Sunsets.

Transport.

We used an Atlas bus from the bus station in Gruz to go to Dubrovnik Airport. The ticket cost 35 Kunas (5 Euros). No payment for check in luggage. It took just over half an hour.We bought our ticket on the bus. If you use the Libertas bus instead you buy your ticket before boarding the bus. The Libertas bus cost 40 Kunas. The Atlas bus timetable changes every 2 days. Its timetable for 2 days is displayed at the bus station. Airport buses depart from stand 8.

Dubrovnik To Cavtat.

The number 10 bus goes from Gruz bus station to Cavtat. It cost 20 Kunas for a one way ticket. Buy your bus ticket from the bus driver; there is no need to stamp it in a machine. There are about 2 buses an hour.

Buses In Dubrovnik.

The bus service in Dubrovnik is quite user friendly. Buy tickets from a Tisak Kiosk. They cost 12 kunas each, 15 if you buy them on the bus. Tickets need to be stamped on the bus to validate them. We used 1A and 1B to go from Gruz to the old town and number 10 from Gruz to Cavtat. The Cavtat journey cost 20 kunas from the driver.

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Mostar to Dubrovnik.

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Mostar to Dubrovnik.

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Mostar to Dubrovnik.

Posted by irenevt 06:04 Archived in Croatia

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