Long long ago, Cavtat was founded at the southernmost tip of Dalmatia, on its tiny peninsula. Known in antiquity as Epidaurus, the streets of Cavtat are bedecked with Renaissance palaces and medieval stone houses, and blended in with the scenery of cypresses, pines and olives. Cavtat is redolent with the kind of tranquility that only perfect harmony and balance can bring - that of culture, nature and man. It is especially meditative in the summer, when classical and jazz music festivals take place here.
Cavtat - the artists' muse
In the old town core of Cavtat, the house where the great Croatian painter Vlaho Bukovac was born has now been set up as a museum dedicated to his work. His studio can also be seen, together with the furniture and household items actually used by the great artist and his family.
A ten-minute walk will take you from the Riva to the highest point of the Cavtat peninsula, the site of an architectural and sculptural masterpiece by Ivan Meštrović: the Račić family mausoleum. The intimate surroundings of the sepulchral chapel built of white Brač stone, known also as Our Lady of the Angels, are entered into through a passage lined by tall sculptures of praying angels. The carved reliefs and statues of angels and the late family members will impress you, as will the depictions of a human life cycle - birth, living and death.
These superb works of art amidst untouched Mediterranean nature will refresh your spirit and help you to forget everyday concerns.
Cavtat - an adrenaline rush from the past
Several thousand amphorae await at the depth of about thirty meters (100 ft) below the seas around Cavtat. A galley carrying grain, oil and olives sunk here some two thousand years ago, and the stage was set for the ultimate diving thrill. This protected area, something of a submerged museum, makes it easy to overlook the natural wonder in its vicinity - Konavoske stijene or the Cliffs of Konavle, a range of crags leaping from the sea's surface.
Cavtat's surroundings are best explored on foot, along one of the trails criscrossing Croatia's southernmost region, Konavle. Family farms will open their doors for you and treat you to home-made food prepared according to traditional recipes. Those with their hunger for art still unsatistfied should head to Dubrovnik, a mere ten miles away, for a taste of unparalleled beauty of the cultural and historical heritage.
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