Dubrovnik – a winter break

1st – 7th Jan, 2023

Croatia | Hrvatska

A week’s winter break, to a small but famous city of Croatia. To me, the name “Croatia” sounds very evocative, like it is a faraway place full of adventure and undiscovered joys of travel.

There’s so much written about traveling to and living in Croatia, and Dubrovnik in particular, that it is not exactly undiscovered. I gather from all the research I did, that the high season, summer, is an absolute zoo; winter is not crowded, but some of the attractions might not be open.

B has been there as a child on family vacations, but always camping and beach trips in summer. He doesn’t remember if he’s been to Dubrovnik.

From my research on visiting Croatia, it seems a lot of Canadian men called Frank with their respective wives, have sold their worldly belongings and taken off to temporarily adopt Croatia as their home. (Sample size: 2, and both seem to be travel bloggers! See links in references section to their blogs.)

If you have landed on this page by chance when looking for Dubrovnik tourist info, the references section is more efficient for you. My day-by-day account is more a travelogue of personal experiences, which you are welcome to read of course, but just a disclaimer that it might not be helpful to decide your own itinerary!

To go to the day-by-day write-ups:

  • Click on the navigation links (right sidebar on desktop, below on mobile) or
  • Click on the corresponding images for each day in the gallery below

Things I learnt about Dubrovnik/Croatia

Curious | quirky | heart-warming

Loved the Dubrovnik Winter Festival and its hot alcoholic drinks – my first intro to hot gin!

The beautiful melody of Croatian songs I heard on New Year’s day at the live concert on the Stradun. Loved the crowd joining in and singing along almost all the songs.

People are in general friendly, did not encounter any racism in my week’s stay there.

The stunning natural beauty of the region with the mountains, the islands and the Adriatic. Though I only saw a glimpse in winter, can imagine that year-round, nature has a lot to offer here.

Croatian words must take the record for the longest string of consonants, unpronounceable to the untrained non-native! Look at the country’s name written natively: Hrvatska. And this is not the longest string of consecutive consonants! A native took the trouble to explain vowel-less Croatian words.

Their disdain of imported “EU vegetables” as they call them, translated to a very inconvenient lack of aubergines in winter!

The nearly useless way of displaying only the start and destination stop times at intermediate bus stops (in Dubrovnik at least, not sure about the rest of Croatia). Here’s my day of public transport indulgence of this trip.

While previously I knew of Greece’s reputation for stray cats, realized now that Dubrovnik (Croatia? all of previous Yugoslavia?) is a capital of stray cats, these I lovingly refer to as Adriaticats.

Cliff diving will forever be connected in my mind with this trip and with Mostar.

Yugoslavia’s special relationship with communism, its interpretation of socialism, and it’s complicated relationship with the erstwhile USSR, I learned from the Red History Museum.

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