November 2008: As part of a 17-day trip across the Balkans, my friend Dan and I spent 3 days in Dubrovnik, Croatia. Dubrovnik and its old city dating back to the 7th century made of marble and stone seated along the picturesque mountainous of Adriatic Coast was an up-and-coming tourist destination. Croatia was a new country formed by the disintegration of communist Yugoslavia and I wanted to see it before it was ruined by mass tourism.

 

Dubrovnik

Dan and arrived at Dubrovnik from Kotor, Montenegro via a bus. When we arrived in Dubrovnik, it was raining and cold. We were met at the bus station by a group of aggressive elderly women all trying to solicit their homestays to us. We passed the most aggressive ones and found one that seemed more laid back and friendly and we agreed to stay at her home fora small fee. Dan and I shared a room in her house and as part of our stay she also made home cooked meals for us which was really nice. We did have one bizarre interaction with her when she made us cookies and Dan, who was intoxicated one night after returning from Dubrovnik had a bout of paranoia and claimed our host was trying to poison us. Luckily, she didn’t pick up on this. When we weren’t in our homestay, Dan and I explored Dubrovnik. Our homestay was within walking distance to the old city so we would visit as often as possible and also visit some of the city’s bars and cafes. Dubrovnik in November in 2008 was empty and there were hardly any tourists which made it really special, and I am glad I went when I did. To this day it rates among my favorite European cities.

 

Gateway to old city

Dubrovnik Old City

Dubrovnik Old City Church

Dubrovnik Old City

Dubrovnik Old City

Dubrovnik Old City

Dubrovnik Old City from the top of the wall

Dubrovnik Old City Castle

From Dubrovnik, Dan and I took a bus to Mostrar, Bosnia and we continued our trip across the Balkans.

 

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