Croatia was my first destination in Eastern Europe. Southern Dalmatia, with its walled city of Dubrovnik along the Adriatic Coast, allows one to contemplate what an important civilization flourished here for five centuries. The "Old Town of Dubrovnik," filled with marble streets and Baroque buildings, has earned this area its designation as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is considered among the 10 best medieval walled cities in the world. The walls that surround the city were designed to protect its inhabitants from the threat of attacks from the Turks in the 14th century.