Game of Thrones fans, history buffs and architecture enthusiasts will get a kick out of the grand Rector's Palace in Dubrovnik. This beautiful and historic landmark offers a glimpse into the city's storied past and political background, as well as offering a peaceful break from the buzzing city. And if you've purchased a one-day city card (180 Croatian Kuna, or about €24), you'll be able to get in for free.
Built in the 15th century, the Rector's Palace is located in Dubrovnik's old town and is steeped in history. The palace was originally built as a residence for the Rector, who governed the Republic of Ragusa from Dubrovnik, and the building included his personal office, living chambers, public rooms and the ominous prison dungeon. During his one-month mandate, the Rector was forbidden from leaving the building without permission of the senate, so many aspects of his role can be discovered within the palace walls.
During its long history, the palace has undergone many reconstructions following repeated damage caused by fires, earthquakes and gunpowder explosions. Each new architect involved in its various rebuilds put their own stamp on the design, leaving behind a unique building with Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque influences.
Today, the Rector's Palace houses the Cultural History Museum of Dubrovnik, showcasing the city's historical and artistic past. Many of its rooms have been restored and are arranged with period furniture to recreate the original settings of the palace, and portraits of important figures and aristocrats adorn the walls.
Also on display in the museum is a collection of coins dating back to the Republic, the original keys to the city which were guarded by the Rector at night, the coats of arms, and historical records of the Republic.
Not only is the palace visually stunning, but its atrium is also the most acoustic building in Dubrovnik, so it's often used as a music venue. The Dubrovnik Summer Festival is the perfect time to enjoy this side to the palace, with classical music bouncing off the courtyard's smooth stone surfaces. The festival is one of Croatia's most famous events, and includes over 80 performances of music, dance, film, and theatre at venues around the city between mid-July and late August.
March 22nd to November 2nd
November 3rd to March 21st
Admission to the Cultural History Museum in the Rector's Palace
Ul. Pred Dvorom