Dubrovnik Hills Dubrovnik Croatia Bosnia & Herzegovina  


  • Painting of Dubrovnik before the great earthquake

    Foundation of Dubrovnik

  • Minceta tower - A part of Dubrovnik City walls

    City Walls of Dubrovnik

  • Church of St Saviour in Dubrovnik

    Churches and Temples

  • Dubrovnik Maps

    Maps of Dubrovnik

Dubrovnik Hills - Did you know ?

Dubrovnik - Churches and Temples

Church of the Annunciation - The church of the annunciation with plenty of elements in Gothic style (the cross and rib vaulting, the pointed arches of the windows and some parts of the architectural sculpting) was built in 1534 by the Renaissance master Petar Andrijić and yet as a whole it is a marvelous example of the transitional Gothic and Renaissance style. The façade with its portal and the single bell-cote, likewise its side portal, are richly decorated with stone carvings. In the church interior, there are votive messages written all over the walls. The custom of writing votive messages on the interior walls of the church has been retained to the present day.

Church of St. Luke- - The small church of St Luke got its present form through frequent restorations of the single nave Paleo-Croatian church dating back to the 9th and 11th centuries. The last interventions were completed in 1787 as testified by the year carved in the lintel stone. The statues of the saints carved in the Gothic style in the lunette above the door date from the end of the 15th century and are ascribed to the Petrović brothers. Services are no longer held in church. It is now used as a gallery.

Church of St. Sebastian - The small church of St Sebastian was built in 1466 at the entrance to the town to protect it against plague. It was built by Mihoč Radišić and Vlatko Dešković, while in the decades to come numerous local craftsmen carved its architectural decorations, the choir and other parts. The semicircular Renaissance apse appeared in the architecture of Dubrovnik for the first time. The French turned it into a prison and rebuilt it in 1808. Stone carvers’ workshops as well as the storerooms for stone are situated beneath the same roof.

Dominican monastery - The Dominican monastery complex, built by numerous local and foreign craftsmen, with its church and monastery from the 14th century, the Gothic and Renaissance cloister (1456-1469), along with sacristy, its rich library and chapter house of the 15th century, as well as its belfry which has elements from the Romanesque to the Baroque, is a fine example of the way various styles are blended together according to the principles of  moderation and harmony typical of this region. The church and the museum display many valuable paintings of the Dubrovnik school, some sculptures and other artifacts.

Church of St. Nicholas-The church of St Nicholas is situated at the end of Prijeko Street. The original pre-Romanesque church was of the southern Dalmatian type of single-nave longitudinal church with a cupola. In the course of subsequent centuries it underwent rebuilding, and its façade is of the late Renaissance. In its interior there is a pre-Romanesque interlaced motif relief ornamentation, as well as 13th-14th centuries painting of the Madonna, with 16th century interventions, and a 16th century painted wood relief of St Andrew.

Church of St. James “Pipunar” - Right by the city walls, on Peline, there is a small church of St James “Pipunar” previously dedicated to St Paul. It was mentioned for the first time in 1225 when Dominicans arrived in Dubrovnik and settled down in its vicinity. Because of the subsequent building of houses around it, only the southern façade of the single-nave Romanesque church remained free, with its blind dwarf arcades, entrance and its single bell-cote. In this church there is also a 15th century painting of the Madonna and Child by an unknown artist.

Sigurata church - The small Sigurata church is an example of a single-nave church with a cupola dating between the 9th and the 11th centuries. The side naves and present Baroque façade were added during its reconstruction in the 17th century. Archaeological remains of the two other churches were discovered in its foundations, the older dating from the 6th century. There is a Franciscan convent adjacent to the church and a museum with a collection of paintings, liturgical objects and objects of practical use.

Franciscan monastery - The construction of the Franciscan monastery and its church started around 1317. The cloister, with row of double hexafora, their capitals embellished with figures from a Romanesque bestiary, was built by Mihoje Brajkov. The upper cloister, open only to the Franciscans, is in Renaissance style and the new Baroque church was built after the 1667 earthquake. The monastery also comprises a picturesque Renaissance chapter house, the famous library, the musical archives, the old pharmacy dating back to 1317, and a rich treasury. It contains paintings and pieces of art in silver and gold made by local and foreign masters.

Church of the Holy Savior - The votive church of the Holy Savior was built between 1520 and 1528 by Petar Andrijić according to his own design. Although it has some Gothic elements, this is a church conceived for the first time along the Renaissance lines with its façade divided according to Renaissance principles. It has a single nave and semi-circular apse. It was built in compliance with the decision of the Senate as a mark of gratitude after the great earthquake; even the noble-women carried stone and wood for its construction.

Church of St. Roch- - The church of St Roch was built between 1540 and 1564 in the high Renaissance style as a votive church due to frequent epidemic of plague. It was built by L.Paskojev, L. Vasilić, N.Blažev and others. It has one nave, with shallow rectangular apse; the façade is divided in the Renaissance manner. The side square windows were the first of their kind in Dubrovnik. The fraternity of St Roch caring for those sentenced to death was founded in 1542. The incised inscription on its eastern wall reads: “Peace be unto you. Remember that you will die, you who now are playing ball. 1597”

Domino church- - The Domino church was built in 1452, as the only 3-nave church with rectangular apse. It was destroyed in the great earthquake of 1667 and was rebuilt in baroque style during the same century. It contains the 17th century altarpiece “The Glory of all Saints” by Andrea Vaccaro. It is used to be the seat of the fraternity of the stonemasons. Adjacent to the church one can visit the Marin Držić Memorial Museum dedicated to this renowned Dubrovnik playwright.

Church of St. Joseph - The church of St Joseph was built on the site of the church of St James (1229), one year after its destruction in the earthquake of 1667. The church has a single nave with an apse which has undergone partition and its style is regarded as Baroque. It was built by the carpenters’ fraternity, whose patron saint was St Joseph

Church of St. Mary of the Castle - The Benedictine convent and the church of St Mary of the Castle were built on the site of the Castellum (Kaštio), the oldest fort in Dubrovnik. The convent was established in the 12th century, and rebuilt in the 15th . After being destroyed in the 1667 earthquake, it was restored. The single nave church with its Renaissance semicircular apse and some Gothic elements was built by the Andrijić brothers about 1500. The convent was dissolved in 1806. This church is no longer in use.

Church of St. Margaret - Legend has it that the church of St Margaret was built in 1571 by Queen Margaret on the site of a former church. The oldest church of St Margaret occupied the area of the present neighboring bastion bearing the same name. The existing church has one nave and a rectangular apse, although it was built during the Renaissance period. Services are no longer held in this church.

Church of St. Ignatius - The most important Baroque architect of the Jesuits, Ignazzio Pozzo, built Church of St Ignatius between 1667 and 1725. It is a Baroque church with a single nave, side chapels and a semicircular divided apse, decorated by frescoes with scenes from life of St. Ignatius painted by Gaetano Garcia. The church is a part of an important complex including a monastery and the Collegium Ragusinum, where many prominent Ragusans were educated. The complex is approached by a Baroque staircase designed by Pietro Passalacqua in 1738.

Church of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel - An unknown builder constructed the church of Our Lady of  Mt. Carmel above the small church of St John around 1630. The whole part of the city was named after it. The conception of its space, its façade and the decorative parts are baroque. Its title is derived from Mt Carmel in present Israel. In its interior there are altarpieces by the 18th century painters S.Riccio, 17th century A. Vaccaro, and G. A. Canini (1641). There is a Baroque painting on canvas in its ceiling. The 15th century stone statue of St Blasius  was added later.

The Dubrovnik Cathedral - According to local legend, Richard the Lion Heart, on his return from a Crusade, was shipwrecked near Dubrovnik. In order to be spared his life, he vowed to give money for the building of a church. The church built with that money, later destroyed in a catastrophic earthquake, is the foundation of today's Cathedral. The erection of the domed Cathedral in the Baroque style began in the 17th century. Its interior is adorned with paintings by Italian masters belonging to the Raphael school, while Titian’s work Assumption is located on the main altar. Its treasury was one of the richest in Europe until a catastrophic earthquake. A reliquary in the shape of a hand and the works of Dubrovnik goldsmiths from the 11th and 12th centuries have survived to this day.

Church of St. Blasius - St. Blasius has been revered in Dubrovnik as the patron saint of the city for quite some time. Through the centuries he presented an inspiration to the large number of artists who painted and sculptured his image. In his honor a church of St. Blasius was built. The present day church was constructed by Venetian architect Marino Gropelli in 1715 on the commission by the city authorities. The church was built on the place of an old Romanesque church that was significantly damaged in the Great earthquake of 1667 and a fire that struck it close to a decade later. The new church was built in Baroque style. A large staircase leads to the ornamented main portal and a large dome decorates the roof of the church. The interior of the church is furnished in great detail, a the marble altars are particularly impressive. On the main altar there is statue of St. Blasius in gold-plated silver from the 15th century that holds in his hand a model of the town as it looked before the earthquake. It is interesting to notice that the statue was undamaged in the great earthquake that destroyed the old church.

Church of St James - The church of St James and the Benedictine Abbey of Višnjica were built in 1222. This original Romanesque church and the Abbey underwent thorough changes in the mid 16th century in the traditional Gothic-Renaissance style. The portal and its windows were added to the western façade in the Baroque period. During the time of the Republic, the Ragusan emissaries spent some time in this Abbey before going off with the annual tribute to the Porte in Constantinople. The Abbey was dissolved after the fall of the Republic, at the beginning of the 19th century, while the church is still in use.

The Synagogue - It is one of the oldest European synagogues dating back to 1652. Baroque interior from the time of building is very well conserved. Inside the synagogue there are still grilled windows used for women in religios ceremonies. Inside the synagogue in the center there is carved floor. Torahs brought from Spain by Jewish sefards are still held in a chest in the Synagogue.

Dubrovnik - Maritime Trading and roots of success

Historical Dubrovnik

The very favourable geographical position of Dubrovnik made its development based on maritime and merchant activities very successful through its History. From the entrance to the Adriatic Sea, Dubrovnik is the first port protected by islands on the maritime route to the West, and by way of the Neretva Valley, it has the fastest connection with its hinterland.