He knows no fear!

My trip to Dubrovnik, Croatia in 2013 – part 3

Today I was going to climb up Srđ Hill that overlooks Dubrovnik.

Srđ Hill rises 412m over the Old Town and at the top of which is adorned with Imperial Fortress, built in 1806-1816 during the Napoleonic Wars.

Before the 1991 to 1995 war there was a cable car to take visitors to the top. Although destroyed in 1991, it was recently rebuilt and makes a great excursion for tourists. However the cable car is 90 Kunas (£12) to get to the top.

The hill is the scene to one of the fiercest battles of the 1991-1995 Croatian War of Independence, namely the Siege of Dubrovnik.

Of course with my military training and fitness, I wasn’t going to take the cable car to get to the top of the hill. I needed the 90 Kunas for serious beer drinking later on. So, I was going to yomp it up the hill using the footpath that runs through the woods and countryside.

The walk starts on a track that is off the main highway above Dubrovnik. Because I was starting my walk from the Old Town, I had to climb the narrows streets of Dubrovnik to get to the highway and then play “frogger” to cross the highway.

The sight of Dubrovnik through the woods.

The sight of Dubrovnik through the woods.

The first section of the walk is through the woods just avove Dubrovnik.

I could see Imperial Fortress was near now.

I could see Imperial Fortress was near now.

The fortress comes into view, with the cable car running to it.

I could see Lokrum Island through the trees.

I could see Lokrum Island through the trees.

Looking back down onto the Old Town, I could clearly see Lokrum Island now. This Island is only 600 metres from the harbour and is a nature reserve.

I was about half way now.

Lokrum Island near to Dubrovnik Harbour.

Lokrum Island near to Dubrovnik Harbour.

Lokrum Island also has a nudist beach which I went to earlier. I was disappointed as it was all men! Apparently, this nudist beach is popular with the gay population.

Beside the nudist beach, Lokrum Island has many things to do with a tower, a monastery, many cafes and loads of peacocks.

Almost at the top.

Almost at the top.

I was near the top. It has taken me two hours because of the heat and exhaustion.

I could see for miles.

I could see for miles.

I was glad not to take the cable car – that is cheating!

I could see the Old Town and Lokrum Island clearly now.

I could see the Old Town and Lokrum Island clearly now.

Great views of the Old Town from above.

A close up of the harbour.

A close up of the harbour.

The fort was very close now.

Just a few metres to go....

Just a few metres to go….

I made it to the top of the hill and arrived at the fortress. This fortress was built in the Napoleonic Wars and is over 200 years old.

It was built in 1806 by Marshal Marmont, called the Imperial Fortress, in honor of emperor Napoleon. The fortress was strategically important to defend the northern side of the city.

Today, the fortress is a museum for the Croatian War of Independence also known as the Homeland War. Now there are plans to build a golf course and luxury resort on top also.

The fortress is now a museum for the Homeland War.

The fortress is now a museum for the Homeland War.

I went for a little walk around the fortress and found remains of defences from the 1991-95 war.

The countryside is full of makeshift defences from the 1991-95 war.

The countryside is full of makeshift defences from the 1991-95 war.

Remains from the war is easily found.

I found an expended round on the ground.

I found an expended round on the ground.

I stayed on top of the hill for the sunset over the Adriatic Sea.

I watch the sun go down over the Adriatic Sea.

I watch the sun go down over the Adriatic Sea.

It soon got dark.

It was nighttime over Dubrovnik.

It was nighttime over Dubrovnik.

I headed back down the hill under darkness and into the Old Town for an extra large size one scoop ice cream. It was Smurf flavour! I don’t like Smurfs.

To be continued….

For more information about Croatia please visit:

http://www.croatia.hr

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