Dubrovnik, Croatia

So you’ve traveled all along the Mediterranean coastline. From Spain and France to Italy and Greece. But you’ve yet to venture further up the Adriatic Sea to the countries on the Balkan Peninsula. It’s time to change that. It’s time to check out Croatia.

DubrovnikThe Dalmatian Coast, in southern Croatia, is full of quiet fishing villages, sandy beaches, hidden coves, uninhabited islands, and vibrant cities. One of those cities, Dubrovnik, is among the most stunning stone cities in the world. Surrounded by a well-preserved wall, “the pearl of the Adriatic” has fascinating historical sites, cobblestone streets, and dramatic sea views.

The best place to start your tour of Dubrovnik is from above. Take a cable car to the top of Mount Srd for views of the Old Town, the water, and the nearby mountains. Walk along the city walls, checking out the forts and the towers. Tour the Franciscan monastery, one of the oldest pharmacies in Europe. Drink Dingac wine. Visit Rector’s Palace and St. Blasius Church. Wander the boutiques on Stradun, the pedestrian-only main street. Sail around the Elaphiti Islands. Eat figs and oysters at a restaurant overlooking the water. Listen to jazz at Troubadour. And take a Venetian Vaporetto speedboat to your hotel.

Photo: Villa Dubrovnik
Photo: Villa Dubrovnik

Just minutes from the Eastern Gates of the Old Town, Villa Dubrovnik is a waterfront hotel built into the cliffs. The rooms have views of the fortifications and Lokrum Island. Lemon and orange trees surround the outdoor pool. Restaurant Pjerin serves homemade artichoke ravioli. The rooftop lounge, SkyBar, a perfect sunset perch, creates champagne cocktails. The Beach Club has a ladder into the water. And views of the Adriatic Sea are everywhere.

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