A buttressed city like Dubrovnik, Croatia would certainly bring out the poet in all of us. And for a travel writer like Debbie Selinsky, this ancient city is the stuff of dreams. Debbie is currently sailing on Wind Star’s 7-day Venice to Venice voyage which visits Dubrovnik, and she chronicled her experience which we in turn wanted to share with you:
After cool, rainy days in Venice and a sea day with the sails up, the Wind Star anchored off Dubrovnik, Croatia, today to sunshine and scenery too outrageous to be tagged with tired adjectives such as “gorgeous” and “breathtaking.” After a tender ride in, friends and I joined Maja Milovcic of the Croatian Tourist Authority for a stroll through the winding streets of the famous Old Town, or Stari Grad. Surrounded by Dubrovnik’s ancient stone walls, the Old Town yielded Medieval jewels such as the Cathedral of the Assumption of the Virgin Mary and the Rector’s Palace, a huge government palace that once housed prisoners and now boasts art and some original architectural features.
With two hip guys — one from New York and the other from California — in tow, we simply had to make a stop at the famous Salon Croata, which features thousands of ties, ascots and cravats. Who knew this Mediterranean gem was the birthplace of the necktie?! It actually originated when wives and sweethearts tied colorful scarfs around the necks of their men before they went off to war. Croatia leads the annual international Tie Day celebration every Oct. 18, so mark it on your calendar so you can celebrate from home.
Although the more recent war (the early 1990s) has been over for nearly 20 years, there are still remnants of the bombing in the Old Town. However, Maja, a mother and grandmother who survived the war by hiding for three months in a music school with no water or electricity, pointed out city treasures that had been boarded up and protected or repaired and improved later. “Of course, for those who lost children in the war, they will never forget. But it’s been 20 years and we are all working together to make our city the best it can be,” she said, pointing to a Latin phrase over a doorway that means: “Forget your own private interests for concern of the public.” Words for all nations to live by, perhaps?
Wind Star guests went sailing along the coast on excursions, visited nearby beaches, shopped and took advantage of the chance to swim and water ski off the back of our beautiful vessel. Tonight, if the weather holds, Capt. Mark says we’ll have the popular deckside barbecue and watch the sun set over Dubrovnik. Tomorrow, we’re off to our next Croatian port — Korcula (pronounced Kor-chula), the birthplace of Marco Polo.
– Debbie Selinsky
We bid Debbie and the rest of our guests on the Wind Star a wonderful journey as they continue traveling along the coast of Croatia and onward to Italy.