The west-facing port is particularly rewarding at sunset.
Over a million cruise ship passengers make landfall in Dubrovnik every year, and it isn’t hard to see why. The tall, gleaming white sea walls have stood unchanged and immovable for centuries and make as deep an impression upon the modern visitor as they would have upon the pirates and invaders of the 15th century.
Many of the port’s historic fortifications were designed and built by Paskoje Miličević in the late 1400s. Chief among these were the St Luke Fort, the St John fortress and Revelin fortress, all of which can be visited today as part of a broader tour of the ancient city walls. One particularly striking feature of the port is the old Arsenal, which you can identify by its distinctive three-arched design. It was here that new ships were built in the days of the city-state republic. During the building process, the arches would be sealed up brick by brick to prevent foreign spies from gathering information about Dubrovnik’s shipbuilding techniques, and would only be removed on completion of the vessel. These days the Arsenal has been converted into a pricey but tastefully decorated restaurant, using features of the old shipyard as its theme.
The Haves and the Have-Yachts
These days, a walk around Dubrovnik’s port is uniquely rewarding as an opportunity to experience its walls, its views and its intriguing sense of history. The city’s status as a modern Mediterranean hotspot has also led to an influx of superyachts, and the likes of billionaire Roman Abramovich can occasionally be spotted here on the decks of their gargantuan vessels.
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