After Burt arrived this morning (with Rangers playoff beard and no ATM card) via Dublin, we set out to see and experience this small but beautiful coastal city. Everyone say hi to Burt!
Luckily, there was only one cruise ship in port today (once June rolls around, that number can jump to 4-5) so there weren’t too many tourist hordes to get trampled by. We started at the Old Town’s Pile Gate, built in 1537. Originally, we learned, the gate’s drawbridge was closed every night — and the only key handed to the prince.
Our next stop was the Franciscan Monastery — inside is the mid-14th-century cloister with what are said to be some of the most beautiful Romanesque structures in Dalmatia.
We again walked the main drag (Placa), stopping for some gelato and people watching. Afterwards, we visited the Sponza Palace (which now houses one-thousand years of archives) and the Rector’s Palace, which was home to Dubrovnik’s elected governor — who was not permitted to leave the residence during his one-month term.
As the sun set on the horizon, we walked the famous city walls, built between the 13th and 16th centuries. The threat of attack from the Turks was very real during this time – so much so that the walls are up to 6 meters thick and 25 meters high. They were protected by 15 square forts, like the Minceta Tower and Lovrjenac Fort, that offered commanding views up the mountains and out to sea.
Tomorrow, we board the Adriana Cavtat to explore the Elafiti Islands of Kolocep, Lopud and Sipan.