A quick guide to Dubrovnik, Croatia
Updated: Feb 24
Earlier this summer we spent the biggest part of our vacation in Croatia and didn't miss the chance to visit the country's most popular city, Dubrovnik.
Dubrovnik's popular for its perfectly reserved medieval town, its 2km long walls and of course for being one of the main filming locations for the world famous series of "Games of Thrones".
Dubrovnik is built on Croatia's southern point, close to the country's borders with Bosnia Herzegovina and Montenegro. What's interesting about its location is the fact that it's actually "cut" from the rest of Croatia. If you take a close look on the map, you'll see that there's a bosnian part between Dubrovnik and its surroundings and the rest of Croatia.
So, if you plan to get there by car starting from another point in Croatia, make sure to have your travel documents in hand, as you'll be asked to show them both when you exit Croatia and enter Bosnia and when you exit Bosnia and re-enter Croatia. It will take you less than 15 minutes to pass from one country to the other and back in Croatia, but still you'll cross the borders.
Dubrovnik can also be reached by plane. Its airport is located a good 30 minutes away from the city and hosts both national and international flights.
BEST TIME TO GO
Summertime is with no doubt the most popular season for Dubrovnik's visitors.
From May to August the city gets really busy and crowded, as the weather is quite hot! You can choose to visit it in early autumn, when the crowds will be (almost) gone and the weather will still be quite good, although a few rainfalls might be expected.
During winter, Dubrovnik gets silent and...empty, which makes that period of time the ideal one if you wish to avoid the crowds. However, most of the city's facilities remain closed, from November to April.
WHAT TO SEE AND DO
Dubrovnik's full of imposing buildings, beautifull narrow cobblestone alleys and cute cafes all over the place. Here are some of the most important attractions of the city:
1. The Cathedral
Dubrovnik's cathedral is a roman building devoted to the Assumption and as to most
of Croatia's churches, the entrance is free. Although it's more impressive on the outside take a moment to step inside and admire its inner decoration.
2. The Onofrio's fountains
They are situated right in front of the old town's entrances and they have fresh, drinkable water coming out of their taps.
3. The city walls
Perhaps the most popular monument / activity in Dubrovnik is climbing the 2 km long city walls. You'll get to walk on Croatia's longest medieval walls and admire the old city of Dubrovnik from above. Avoid doing so from 12 to 3pm as the sun is really strong and remember not to throw away the ticket (cost : 16 euros) you'll be given once you enter the walls, as you'll be asked to show it again, during your visit.
P.S: have your camera 100% charged, you'll use it a lot. A lot!
4. Stradun Promenade
Stradun is Dubrovnik's main street, which connects the town's eastern and western entrances. Walk along Stradun, take a break on one of its numerous cafes or restaurants and get lost in the cute alleways spread on its sides.
We chose Kopun and we'd recommend it especially for dinner, as the location is quite romantic under the evening lights. You'll mostly find fish based and seafood choices there, as well as some plates made with kopun-the croatian word for rooster.
We chose Ana Apartments for our 2 nights stay in Dubrovnik and were pretty satisfied by its location at Sustjepan (just a 10 minutes drive to the city centre, or take the bus from the stop, right next to the apartments). We'd love to stay inside the Old Town, but we also needed a parking place for our rental car, so we chose to stay on the nearby outskirts of Dubrovnik.
Talking about cars, please keep in mind that no vehicles are allowed inside Durbovnik's Old Town. You can leave your car in private or community garages all around the historic centre. Don't expect them to be cheap, 'cause they are not! They're actually quite pricey, so taking the bus or walking to the Old Town might be a wiser choice.