Largest Defensive Walls, Salt Pans, and Mussel Farms
Ston Travel Blog› entry 2 of 5 › view all entries
Our first stop on the tour was the town of Ston which is a small town and municapllity in the Dubrovnik-Neretva county of Croatia, located just south of the isthmus of the Peljesac peninsula. Ston was a previous military fort of the Ragusan Republic whose defensive walls are incredible. They are medieval architecture, 890 meters long town wall and a 5km Great Wall outside of town. These walls extend to the Mali Ston ("Little Ston") which is a smaller town on the northern side of the isthmus and at the end of the Gulf of Mali Ston.
One of the first attractions we saw in the town was the saltworks which were protected by the over 3 mile long wall during the 12th to 19th centuries. These salt pans are a vital source of income still and were highly coveted by the Republic of Dubrovnik and the Ottoman Empire.
When we arrived in Ston, it was POURING rain and pretty chilly for the end of May. We opted to take a quick peek at the salt mines since it was pretty flooded to wander through there and find a bar where we could try Croatian beer. Priorities, I know! We passed this somewhat crazy lady who was trying to tell bad American jokes and opted to continue on down the way. It was a very small town and trying to find one of the few bars/cafes that took credit cards was proving impossible. We finally found one but he did not speak English very well and tried to figure out the conversion rate which was hilarious.
We walked over to Mali Ston in order to have lunch and get a tour of the mussel farming that takes place in the local bay. By now, the weather was clearing up a bit and you could see the fort walls a little better back into Ston. We took a quick boat ride and then it was off to the Taverna to enjoy fresh seafood and local wines. Wine?!?! Did someone say wine?!?! :D I quickly figured out that is one of the things I loved about excursions with lunch......the wine was free flowing and pretty good as well.
Anyways, it was pretty much all you can eat and lunch consisted of raw oysters, raw mussels, calamari, small fish, and other seafood appetizers. Ended up sitting across from a number of California people which surprised me. The couple next to me were from Rocklin which is about a 30 minute drive across town from me. Amazing to travel around the world and wind up next to people from your own backyard! Lunch was very yummy and even better since a number of people at the table do not like raw seafood so my ex and I feasted on oysters and mussels. Raw mussels are not commonly found here in the States but I have had them once before and these were obviously much better and fresher.