Dubrovnik City Guide

The Southernmost city on the Dalmatian Coast, Dubrovnik is a gem along the Adriatic. Walk the 16th century city walls, find a swim spot in the crystal clear water and catch the sunset from the top of Srd Hill.

Explore Old Town

Old Town Dubrovnik feels like you’ve traveled back in time. I highly recommend waking up early in the morning to beat the crowds. We were out the door by 6:30am the morning we explored Old Town and had the city to ourselves and a few locals. It was so peaceful and beautiful!

  • Cost: Free
  • Estimated time needed: 1-2 hours

Walk the City Walls

One of my favorite parts about visiting Dubrovnik was when we walked the city walls. You get the best views of the Old Town and the water. It’s important to note that there is very limited shade while walking the walls, so if you’re visiting in the summer it gets hot quickly. In the peak season, they open at 8am, and in the off season at 9am. The best tips I have for you is to arrive right when it opens and use the entrance at Ploce Gate (rather than Pile Gate). Arriving early helps you avoid crowds (and the heat), while starting at Ploce Gate puts you at the opposite side of the wall as most other visitors.

  • Cost: 200 kn (~$30)
  • Reserve spots online here: Walls of Dubrovnik
  • Estimated time needed: 1-2 hours

Srd Hill Cable Car

The Cable Car takes you to the top of Srd Hill. I recommend bringing some wine or snacks and timing it up to arrive for sunset. We were able to see Dubrovnik by day, golden hour and night. It was stunning! We spent way more time at the top than we thought we would have and wished we had packed more snacks /drinks. We did not purchase our tickets in advance, and even at peak season we didn’t have an issue getting a ticket at the stand.

  • Cost: 200 kn (~$30) roundtrip
  • Reserve spots online here: Srd Hill Cable Car
  • Estimated time needed: 1-2 hours

Lovrijenac Fort

Lovrijenac Fort, also called St. Lawrence Fortress, is a theater built into the cliff outside the Old Town walls. Today, it is used for summer theater festivals as well as weddings, but it holds an important piece of history in defending Dubrovnik against the Venetians as well. If you plan to walk the city walls, entrance to the fort is included in this ticket and worth the stop!

  • Cost: Included in City Wall ticket / 50 kn (~$8) on it’s own
  • Estimated time needed: 30 minutes – 1 hour

Dubrovnik Cathedral

While many iterations of this Cathedral were built here as early as the 7th century, the one that stands today was finished in 1713. It’s in the heart of Old Town and a can’t miss sight, even if you only stop to admire the architecture while walking through old town.

  • Cost: Free
  • Estimated time needed: 30 minutes – 1 hour

Day trip to Lokrum

Lokrum is an island off the coast of Dubrovnik. In peak season the ferry leaves Dubrovnik every 30 minutes, but less frequently in the off season. We caught a morning ferry to the island and packed snacks, our swim suits and towels. Lokrum is currently uninhabited by humans and has a haunting past. It’s got some ruins, hiking trails and awesome swim spots. No cars are permitted on the island so it’s very quiet and the perfect day trip to escape the hustle and bustle of old town. Check out more information about our day trip there on our previous post here: Lokrum.

  • Cost: 40 kn (~$5)
  • Estimated time needed: All day or half day

Day trip to Kotor

While speaking of day trips, we also were able to take a bus to Kotor, Montenegro. A day trip to another country feels like a strange concept for most Americans but is actually easy and common while traveling in Europe. It takes two hours to get there by bus and the old town is small enough to walk around and enjoy in a day. Check out more information on our previous post here: Kotor.

  • Cost: 200 kn (~$30) round trip bus tickets
  • Estimated time needed: All day

Buza Bar

Buza Bar is a bar right along the cliffs overlooking the sea. The entrance is hidden in the Old City Walls, so it is a bit challenging to find. While we didn’t make it here on during our trip, we wanted to include it on here since it’s such a beautiful bar. Grab a drink, take a swim and soak up the blue Adriatic sea!

  • Cost: 20-30 kuna (~$3-$5) for a drink
  • More information: Buza Bar
  • Estimated time needed: 1-2 hours

Sponza Palace

Finished in 1522, this Palace has been used for a variety of things in it’s history: a treasury, an armory and even a school! Today it is home to the city’s archives, as well as beautiful gothic courtyard.

  • Cost: 40 kuna (~$6)
  • Estimated time needed: 30 mins – 1 hour

Church of St. Blaise

St. Blaise is a baroque style church, also located in Old Town. St. Blaise is the patron saint of Dubrovnik.

  • Cost: Free
  • Estimated time needed: 30 mins – 1 hour

Visit Local Swim Spot

If you don’t have time to make it out to Lokrum for a swim, Dubrovnik has plenty of spots of their own. It’s home to a few beaches, but we found the one near Old Town was quite crowded. Instead, we ventured off the beaten path and found a swim spot near Gradac Park called Danče Beach with some other locals and tourists. The water is so crystal clear, you can see 30 feet below you!

  • Cost: Free
  • Estimated time needed: 2-3 hours

Reenact Game of Thrones Scenes

Lastly, if you’re a fan of the HBO TV series, Game of Thrones – Dubrovnik is where they filmed a lot of scenes in Kings Landing. Many local tour agencies offer guided tours to visit the spots, or you can seek them out yourself! We’re working on a separate post about where to find all the best ones, so stay tuned.

Accommodation

View from Airbnb rooftop

We stayed in an Airbnb right outside the city walls (room & bathroom separate from the main house). We were able to walk to everything. They also had a rooftop patio where you could see the city walls and views of the water. To this date, it’s one of our favorite Airbnb experiences. The host was fantastic as well and even offered us homemade cake and beers to welcome us when we first arrived!

Dubrovnik Travel Tips

  • Transportation
    • Dubrovnik is very walkable! We only used public transportation to get there from Split and head back to the airport.
    • Croatia also has Uber as well
  • Tipping
    • In Croatia you tip 10% on top of your bill at most restaurants but it’s not necessary for smaller purchases or in a cafe
    • Tipping is not as prominent in Croatia as it is in the US because servers are paid a livable wage
  • Weather
    • Dubrovnik has hot summers but luckily has some beautiful swim spots to balance the weather perfectly!
    • If you don’t like the heat, I recommend visiting in the shoulder season. It’ll also be less crowded!
      • Winter: 40-60 F
      • Summer: 70-85 F
  • General
    • Bring swim shoes
      • The beaches are rocky, rather than sandy so they are great to have in order to find those beautiful swim spots we mentioned.
    • Check out the cruise ship schedule
      • We planned to take day trips to Kotor and Lokrum when we knew a cruise ship was going to be docked in Dubrovnik
      • The day we chose to explore Old Town we strategically chose a day where only a small ship was to be in port so it would be less crowded
      • You can find helpful info here: Dubrovnik Cruise Schedule

Doviđenja, Amanda

P.S. Check out the vlog we made about our time in Dubrovnik!

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Last edited: April 2020


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