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The Pelješac Peninsula is Croatia at its best. You know that red wine you've been drinking since you got to Dalmatia? It comes from the vineyards here. Those secret beaches you've been trying to find? The peninsula is surrounded by them. And those famous oysters you've been eating in Dubrovnik? They pull them out of the channel right in front of you and serve them with a slice of lemon. A wild, unexplored region full of secluded coves, stone villages, vineyards, and breathtaking views, it's a rare, undiscovered gem just an hour away from Dubrovnik.

There are two main towns that make a great base from which to explore the Peninsula. Mali Ston is the first town you come to when driving from Dubrovnik, famous for its fortified walls, salt pans, and oysters. On the other end of the Peninsula, Orebi? straggles along the coast, facing across a narrow sea channel to the island of Kor?ula. Historically, the town spent several centuries under the Republic of Dubrovnik, supplying many able seamen to the republic's merchant navy. From 1865 to 1887, the town even had its own shipping company; today, you can see a string of villas and their gardens overlooking the coastal promenade, built by wealthy local sea captains.

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Fodor's Essential Croatia: with Montenegro & Slovenia

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