Placa (Stradun) is the most popular promenade, gathering place and business street of the old Dubrovnik centre. This widest and most beautiful street shortest communication between the western and the eastern gates, Pile and Ploče gate, and in the same time it divides the old city into northern and southern part. This street was created at the close of the 11th century. Placa acquired its proper function at the end of the 12th century when city got its city wall and become one urban area. The name Placa it derived from the Greek and Latin Platea, which we translate as „street“. The other name, Stradun, is a Venetian sobriquet used ironically in the sense of „Big Street“.At the beginning of the main street lies the Big Onofrio's Fountain, which was build in 1438 by the Neapolitan builder Onofrio della Cava who was hired by the Republic to construct the urban aqueduct. Dubrovnik aqueduct from the late Middle Ages is an exceptional case. Della Cava was entrusted with the task of building Dubrovnik’s aqueduct and construction began on the system in 1463 starting in Šumet at Rijeka Dubrovačka, 12 kilomatres away from the city. After the aqueduct was completed, Della Cava constructed two fountains. Today they are known as Big Onofrio’s Fountain, and the Small Onofrio’s fountain, which sits next to the city’s famous bell tower. To this day, Dubrovnik still receives its water supply from the same spring in Šumet.
The Bell Tower with clock was built in 1444. right in the axis of the Placa. It is 31 meters high and is one of the symbols of free city state. The bell tower was built by the local masters Grubačević, Utišenović, and Radončić. On top of the tower you may see two soldiers made of bronze Maro and Baro "Zelenci", hammer out the hours as they have done since the 15th century. Next to the Bell Tower is the monumental Gothic- Renaissance building Sponza Palace, designed by Paskoje Miličević , and it is one of the most beautiful buildings in the City. In the time of the Republic this place, often referred as Divona (from dogana – „customs“), housed the custom office and bonded warehouse. Nowadays the Sponza Palace is the home of the most important cultural institution of Dubrovnik – the Archive. Almost all documents that cover the period between the 12th century and the fall of the Republic are to be found there.In front of the Church of St. Blasius is a high stone column with flag- staff, decorated with the figure of the legendary medieval knight Roland. Roland's Column was set up in 1418, it is Gothic in style and was carved by the sculptor Bonino of Milan with a help of local craftsmen.