A UNESCO Wonderland
The “undiscovered country” along the eastern Adriatic epitomizes the fabled beauty and fairy-tale ambience of the Old World. Rarely visited by American travelers, this splendorous region is a wonderland of deep-blue seas, magical islands, Roman ruins, medieval towns, celebrated cities, and UNESCO World Heritage Sites.
According to UNESCO, "Heritage is our legacy from the past, what we live with today, and what we pass on to future generations. Our cultural and natural heritage are both irreplaceable sources of life and inspiration." The countries along the Adriatic Coast are blessed to have so many wonderful UNESCO sites within such a relatively small geographic area. The entire Old Town of Dubrovnik in Croatia survived an earthquake in 1667 and the bombardment of 1991 and remains an unforgettable destination filled with architectural splendors. Plitvice Lakes National Park, where water flowing through limestone and chalk over millennia has created beautiful lakes, caves and waterfalls, is a nature lover’s delight and an especially great spot for bird watching. With its hilltop fortresses, impressive monuments and beautiful architecture, Montenegro’s historic city of Kotor has been an important artistic and commercial center since the Middle Ages. Severely damaged by an earthquake in 1979, the bayside town has been restored with a significant amount of aid from UNESCO. Beyond just wondrous places classified as UNESCO World Heritage Sites, the Adriatic region abounds with other incredible attractions, like the amazing cave system of Slovenia’s Postojna and St. Mary’s Church on a tiny island in Lake Bled.