I just love this picture of a flying staircase composed only of stones, motar and an arch. The staricase provides access to the walled City of Korcula, an island seemingly floating in the Adriatic off the coast of Croatia.
Not too far South is Dubrovnik, an ancient walled City which was home to the world’s best sailors and which was able, through diplomacy and cunning, to maintain its independence from the 600 year Ottoman dominion which plagued its neighboring city states. By ceding a 10 kilometer wide access along the Neretva River to the Adriatic, from what is now Bosnia-Herzegovina, the Dubrovniks were accorded access to all Ottoman ports at a favorable duty.
If you ever, ever travel to Europe do yourself a big favor and spend a week or two on the Dalmatian coast of Croatia. I started in Split, which grew up around the retirement compound of Diocletian, the only Roman emperor who lived to see retirement; worked my way via ferry from the mainland to the islands of Hvar, Korcula, and a couple less spectacular islands; hit the mainland again to visit Dubrovnik; and bussed up the Adriatic coast back to Split, where I began my air journey home.