Hidden gem nearby Dubrovnik - Cavtat

There are several legends how the town got its name and in this spring time when whereever you go you feel an amazing floral scent, form jasmin to fresias and roses in lush bloom, somehow the one that the name comes from old croatian verb captiti - to bloom, suddenly makes sence.

Located in a secluded bay, protected by two deeply forested peninsulas, Cavtat is one of the oldest settlements in the area.

With its amazing promenade, palm trees, restaurants in a shades of old pine trees it attracts everyone to visit and relax in the peaceful surroundings that Cavtat offers.

But, it is not just another lovely sea side town. This place hides some of the best art work in the area.

Did you know that Vlaho Bukovac, one of the best Croatian painters was born here? The year 1877, was essential for Bukovac as he was accepted in a class of professor Cabanel at the École des Beaux-Arts in Paris, France. He considered himself as a representative of modern French realistic school and his paintings are full of amazing details. His birth house is open as a gallery of his work. But, two of the town churches as well are hosting his paintings. Portraits of four evangelists can be seen in parish church of St. Nicholas and beautiful landscape painting of the whole town of Cavtat is today decorating the church of Our Lady of the Snow.

Fun fact is that the main curtain of Croatian National Opera is decorated by replica of a Bukovac painting “ The Gundulić dream”.

As you stroll on the promenade, you will be drawn to look up to the top of the hill where a masterpiece of architecture stands tall overlooking the town.
It is a mausoleum of Račić family, made by Ivan Meštrović, the best Croatian sculptor. Meštrović build this as his first architectural piece and it is considered a masterpiece of art deco. The mausoleum is fully build of Brač white stone and it was built in two years. It was Marija, the daughter of ship owner Ivo Račić, that Meštrović was in love with, who asked him “Will you build me a grave, when I die and give me a proof that death is just an illusion?” The answer to this question Meštrović has written on a bell of mausoleum… “Solve the mystery of love and you will solve the mystery of death and you will believe that life is eternal”.