I chose Dubrovnik, Croatia as my Erasmus destination. I absolutely love the country and have always wanted to live by the sea, so Dubrovnik was the perfect option. After the 12-hour drive from my hometown Bratislava, Slovakia, we finally arrived in this beautiful city. It welcomed us with wind and rain, and mild temperatures – comparing to the freezing Slovakia we left behind.
The sun came out the next morning as if it wanted to welcome me and make sure that I like Dubrovnik from the very start. My family left me just before lunch to drive back to Slovakia and I got to enjoy the quiet apartment carved into the rocks and comforting sounds of the sea outside my windows.
I grabbed my bag and sunglasses and set off on my first adventure in Dubrovnik. Thanks to the perfect location of my apartment, it was unbelievably easy to reach the Old Town (Stari Grad as they call it in Croatian). The streets lacked the hustle and bustle created by tourists from all over the world, who will flood the streets in just a couple of months’ time. It was a Sunday morning, the perfect time to enjoy your breakfast in the little cafés along the main street.
The city was preparing to conclude the festivities connected with the Patron Saint of Dubrovnik, St. Blaze (Sveti Vlaho). Not knowing it the first morning in Dubrovnik that these festivities include historical costumes and an occasional burst of cannon fire, I got scared quite a few times that day. Fortunately, I met my landlord in the old town and he provided an explanation of the cannon fire while laughing heartily at my puzzled expression. The rest of the day was about unpacking my giant suitcase and cursing myself for bringing too much stuff while having too little storage space in my bedroom.