There are many beautiful places in the world, however the people of Dubrovnik claim their city to be the most beautiful. A warm southern climate, spacious blue skies, emerald green and dark blue crystal-clear sea touching the rocky shore and spilling into numerous coves and bays, onto sandy beaches and steep reefs decorated with the lushest Mediterranean and subtropical flora.
Under the mild Mediterranean climate, Dubrovnik is bathed in a sea of sun, blossoms and ripe orange and lemon tree fruit, even in the winter months. There are more than 250 sunny days per year, the average annual temperature is about 17°C, with the mean winter and summer temperatures being 10°C and 26°C respectively. The average summer sea temperature is about 21°C. The swimming season in the sea begins as early as April, sometimes even earlier, and lasts until late October, while swimming in indoor hotel pools is available year round. Dubrovnik and its surrounding areas cover the southernmost region of the Republic of Croatia and its Dalmatian province, from Neum in the west to Sutorina and Ponte Ostre in the east. The region borders with the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina to the north and the Republic of Montenegro to the east. This long, narrow coastal belt under the Dinaric mountains and low mountain peaks spreads to the east in the Konavle Polje (Fields), and includes Sniježnica Mountain and its mountainous region, it being its most inland point. One side borders with Herzegovina, the other with Montenegro, with the border line following the mountain peaks and at certain points coming to within a few hundred metres of the sea (such as at Duboka Ljuta).
The City of Dubrovnik is under UNESCO protection. According to records, the area around Dubrovnik was first inhabited somewhere between 6000 and 2000 BC. The existence of the city was lost in the cloudy course of history, with legend and historical facts being meshed together. The lack of any preserved documents makes the whole pinpointing process harder, and the few historians that are researching this topic are left with the task to distinguish fact from fiction.
What is certain is that Dubrovnik is an old city, persevering on its stony cliffs for at least 14 centuries. An even older city, Epidaurum, predates Dubrovnik, being located where the city of Cavtat now lies, about 18 kilometres southeast of Dubrovnik. At the time of its destruction it had endured for at least 10 to 12 centuries. Again, historians cannot be sure. Some believe that the Greeks founded the colony around 600BC. With the city destroyed, a number of its inhabitants fled to neighbouring regions (today's Župa Dubrovačka), where the fortified cities of Spilan and Gradac (Burnum) were inhabited, as well as the rocky islet of Laus, which became the first city core of old Dubrovnik.
The rapid settlement of Laus resulted in the development of a new city, today's Dubrovnik (in the 7th century) which would, on that small rocky area, grow deep roots and build a glorious and heroic history in the stormy centuries to follow. During the 7th century, the Slavic tribes, with Croats being one of the superior ones, had already set up permanent residences along the majority of the eastern Adriatic coast, with the exception of a few fortified Roman cities, which were becoming cut off from the rest of the empire in the wake of this rapid Slavic population. In comparison to the development of cities with a Roman population, a settlement was developing near Ragusium, at the foothills of Mount Srđ, which received the Croatian name Dubrovnik. The name came from the oak forests which even today are called "dubrave" today. During the 10th and 11th century, the sea strait between the two settlements became shallower due to alleviation, drying up completely at the end. When the two settlements, already joined together, were fortified and strengthened within the same city walls at the end of 12th century, the result was the Old Town of Dubrovnik, an urban centre preserved to the present day.
Dubrovnik Tourist Board
Tel: +385 (0) 20 312011
Fax: +385 (0) 20 323725