The history of Dubrovnik concentrates on a small settlement on the site of Dubrovnik in pre-historic times; this settlement, in fact, was on an island called Laus which was, at that time, separated from the mainland by a marsh. There was also a larger Greek settlement nearby in what was called Epidauros. An invasion by Slavs in the 7th century destroyed Epidauros and other communities in the area, causing inhabitants to flee to Laus. Laus eventually changed to Raus which in turn became Ragusa – which is the historic name for Dubrovnik. Around this time, Dubrovnik itself was founded by Croats.
Dubrovnik expanded considerably from the 9th century onwards and as part of the Byzantine Empire, so by the 12th century it was even considered as somewhat of a threat to Venice and its Republic. It came under attack from Venice, and from 1205 to 1358 fell under its rule.
In 1358 the Treaty of Zadar saw Dubrovnik cease being under Venice’s rule and instead become Croat-Hungarian, although it had a great deal of independence. From the 13th century onwards, Dubrovnik experienced a number of important developments which increased its prominence.
Dubrovnik was hit by an earthquake on 6 April 1667, which killed about 5,000 inhabitants and destroyed much of the city, although the city walls remained standing. The city was much weakened, and when in 1806 Napoleon entered Dubrovnik there was little resistance. The Republic of Ragusa was officially dissolved in 1808 but, after Napolean’s fall, Dubrovnik became part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire in 1815.
Dubrovnik is a Croatian city on the Adriatic Sea. It is one of the most promenient tourist destinations in the Mediterranean Sea, a seaport and the centre of Dubrovnik-Neretva Country. Its total population is 42,615 (census 2011). In 1979, the city of Dubrovnik joined the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites.
Address: Pred Dvorom 1, 20 000 Dubrovnik
Dubrovnik's economic fortunes began to improve in 2000, led by a rebound in tourism and credit-driven consumer spending. A high unemployment rate, a growing trade deficit, and uneven regional development pose challenges. Tourism and the port are the basis of Dubrovnik's economy, and there are some light industries.
Rail lines connect Dubrovnik directly to neighboring countries. Dubrovnik Airport, located approximately 20 km from the city center, near Ćilipi, provides links to Zagreb, Croatia's capital, and European cities. Buses connect the airport with the Dubrovnik bus station. A network of modern buses connects all Dubrovnik neighborhoods. The port at nearby Gruž provides a link to other Dalmatian ports and to Italy.
Generally regarded to as the most picturesque city on the Dalmatian coast, Dubrovnik is commonly referred to as the "Pearl of the Adriatic." Though the city was severely damaged by an earthquake in 1667, it managed to preserve its beautiful Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque churches,monasteries, palaces, and fountains. It was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1979. When it was damaged in the 1990s through occupation and artillery attack, it became a focus of major restoration coordinated by UNESCO.
The city and its surroundings, including numerous islands, have much to attract tourists. The area boasts numerous old buildings, such as the oldest arboretum in the world, dating back to before 1492, and the third oldest European pharmacy, which dates to 1317 and is the only one still in operation today.
The annual Dubrovnik Summer Festival is a cultural event in which keys of the city are given to artists who entertain for an entire month with live plays, concerts, and games. A holiday on February 3 each year is the feast of Sveti Vlaho (Saint Blaise), the city's patron saint, which is celebrated with Mass, parades, and festivities that last for several days.