Dubrovnik and Lokrum Island

Dubrovnik Travel Blog

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The walled city of Dubrovnik is actually a fairly small place.  Because of this and because they don’t allow cars inside the walls (aside from service vehicles early in the morning) it is a very people friendly city.

We had seen most of the Old Town and so today Deb and I ventured outside of the city by taking a 9 am boat over to Lokrum Island, which is only about 10 minutes away. Lockrum island has been turned into a nature preserve and has no roads – only foot paths, most of which are well marked.

Once on the island we headed for the fortress – the highest point of the island. It was build in the 19th century by Napoleon’s troops. Why it was built, I don’t know. The last 100 yards up the hill is a vigorous walk best done when it is cool. The views are just OK. The views along many of the trails would be great except that the path is carved through the trees and vegetation. If I owned the island, I would have a few spots where the trees were trimmed so that you could have decent overlooks. But I don’t own the island and perhaps “nature preserve” means that they don’t believe in chain saws.

One thing that Deb and I noticed was that there is a big concern for fires. Smoking is prohibited on the island and placed periodically along the trails are drums full of water with smaller coffee can sized ladles so a small fire could be quickly extinguished. I noticed that the ladles had bottoms that had rusted out, however. But the intentions are pure.

It was sunny today and Deb and I went to the west side of the island and sunned for a while. Incidentally, what the maps calls “beaches” on this island are actually large areas of flat rocks. A towel makes things softer but a cushion would be even better. There is a clothing optional beach on one corner of the island. The sign calls it “FKK” which the abbreviation for the German phrase for “free body culture,” which started in Germany in the 1920s. I peeked into the FKK area and saw one or two enjoying their “free bodies.” I don’t know if they were German. How do you tell?

Later in the evening Deb and I went to a pizzeria and then strolled the Stradun with the rest of the tourists and locals. The Stradun is overrun by tourists during the day but I got the impression that there were more locals strutting up and down the main street than there were tourists. It was Sunday evening and one of our guide books says that this is the custom.

[Written on the 4th] I went to bed around 10:00 but didn’t fall asleep until 11:00 or so. Our street has very little tourist foot traffic but because the house across the street is only around 10 feet away, you can hear everything through the open windows. On top of that, our neighbors, who are locals, must be hard of hearing and so their TV blasts away. This morning, I could even hear one of the residents snoring loudly. But all of this is OK – its part of the authentic Dubrovnik experience. Now if Deb were snoring, I’d do something about it. THAT kind of authenticity I don’t need. (But she doesn’t snore. Really.)

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photo by: benwielenga