Dubrovnik Old Town

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19 Ultimate Things To Do In Dubrovnik, Croatia

Visiting Dubrovnik, Croatia is like stepping back in time to the most beautiful medieval city and transports you to another era. There is no end to the best things to do in Dubrovnik that make for a memorable trip. You can easily spend a week but no less than 3 days in Dubrovnik to fully take in its allure!

Sitting on the Dalmatian Coast along the Adriatic Sea, Dubrovnik is sure to put a smile on your face while gazing at its clear and inviting blue waters.

When in Dubrovnik, expect to do some serious walking that mostly includes never-ending stairs. Don’t be fooled when you go down steps, as you will always have to come back up! I jokingly nicknamed Dubrovnik, the “city of steps”!

On two visits, Dubrovnik exceeded my expectations on every level as it is full of so many awesome activities and the warmest people. I couldn’t get over how clean and pristine the city is, looking freshly washed with the white limestone color that adorns the town.

An idyllic and tiny old building built into the rocks on Pile Bay below Fort Lovrijenac is one of many things to do in Dubrovnik.

The entire time I felt like I was walking around on the most exquisite movie set. By the end of my stay in Dubrovnik, I was left in awe. Dubrovnik captured my heart and left me wanting to come back even before I had left…

In this post I’ll share what to do in Dubrovnik, where to stay, travel info, and day trips if you have additional time.

And if you plan to go on a road trip to see other places in Croatia, use this perfect 10 day Croatia itinerary!

Tip: Since you will be doing a ton of walking, your feet will likely be exhausted at the end of the day. If you are looking for a comfy pair of walking shoes then look no further than these.

Walking the City Walls along the Old Port and Adriatic Sea with boats docked is one of the most beautiful Dubrovnik attractions to see.

Best Things To Do In Dubrovnik

1. Explore Dubrovnik Old Town

Seeing the old town of Dubrovnik for the first time is mesmerizing and straight out of a fairytale setting. Its beauty and charm might make it the most beautiful old town I have seen in Europe.

Old Town is in the central area of Dubrovnik bordering the Adriatic Sea within the city walls. This won’t be hard to notice, as the city walls are massive and quite impressive in their construction.

Immediately you feel as if you have stepped back in time. Numerous pristine limestone paved walkways, alleyways, and staircases are waiting for you to wander on.

Walking down the main walkway or Stradun in Dubrovnik's Old Town with buildings and cafes lining it.
Looking past the city walls to view the Port of Old Town with boats docked early in the morning in Dubrovnik, Croatia.
Walking the beautiful streets with white stonework and lanterns lit above doorways in Old Town Dubrovnik before the crowds appear.

Many of the sights and attractions in this post are located in Dubrovnik Old Town which is pedestrian-only.

This makes it convenient to visit without having to look out for traffic (other than tourists that is…).

There are only three ways to enter into Old Town, via the Pile Gate, Buza Gate, and Ploce Gate. All three gates are by land as the coastal part of Dubrovnik is a steep cliff with imposing walls meant to keep intruders out (in the past that is).

To this day, Old Town has never been invaded or taken over. The city did experience damage from the 1991 war but that was due to aerial bombings.

Book An Old Town & City Walls Guided Tour!

Book A Dubrovnik Old Town Walking Tour!

2. Dubrovnik Old Town Gates

Pile Gate

Pile Gate is also known as the “main gate or entrance” that tends to be a great starting point on your first entry into this magical city. Once you walk through the Pile Gate, the city opens up to a long and rather grand walkway.

This walkway is called the Stradun or Placa running the entire length of Old Town from the Pile Gate to the city’s port.

The Stradun separates the city into the north and south sections. There are many shops and cafes off of the Strudun but try to venture off this bustling area.

Pile Gate and main entrance to Dubrovnik Old Town with the city walls.
Inside the main Pile Gate Entrance with beautiful stonework.
Entrance from Pile Gate into Old Town Dubrovnik with white stonework and a slight ramp leading down and several pigeons.

You will find more peace and quiet, not to mention better prices off of the alleyways further from the center. For example, I had a coffee at a café right on the Stradun and it came out to be more than a Starbucks coffee at home!

It was still worth it as the latte was delicious and the ambience was priceless. And later in the day, don’t pass up getting a gelato as it really is a tasty treat here.

Buza Gate

The Buza Gate is the northern gate entrance at the top of Old Town. The top you say? Well, the city is built on a hillside so once you enter the Buza Gate you will walk down many steep steps to get to the Stradun.

On this side of the city, there are numerous restaurants and cafes to satisfy any appetite many located on the Prijeko walkway (midway down from Buza Gate).

Ploce Gate

Ploce Gate is on the eastern side opposite from Pile Gate and a much quieter entry point. It is the perfect spot to take in views of the Dubrovnik’s port where boats are coming and going to the islands.

The city gates are never closed, so if you love taking photos, go early to capture the city before it fully wakes up!

Ploce Gate entrance into the Dubrovnik Old Town with views of old port in the background a few tall palm trees.

Tip: You might find yourself lost when exploring Old Town or not sure how to get back to the main Stradun.

If you do, always head down and eventually you will find yourself back to the main street or Stradun! Both sides of Old Town slope down to meet the Stradun (the north side being steeper).

Reserve Your Spot On This Old Town & City Walls Tour!

3. Have A Croatian Food Experience (or two)

Taking a customized or small tour at the beginning of your stay is a great way to quickly get familiar with the layout of a city.

It is also an incredible way to learn the history and interesting tidbits of information straight from a local.

If you are looking for the most incredible evening meal, don’t miss out on this delicious meal with Marija and Zlatko who happened to be featured in National Geographic!

It was truly the most amazing meal I’ve had and with the friendliest family along with a few other visitors.

I especially enjoyed getting more familiar with Croatian life, their traditions, and connecting deeper with locals. You can read more about this memorable dining experience with Marija and her family here.

Reserve Your Seat Dining With Locals For A Croatian Meal!

Delicious spread of traditional Croatian food such as meats, cheeses, tomatoes, wine, and more at the Dine with Locals Experience in Dubrovnik, Croatia.

Another great way to sample a variety of foods is to go on a small group tour visiting a handful of restaurants in Old Town Dubrovnik to try traditional Croatian dishes and wines.

As you make your way from one restaurant to another, your guide will share interesting info and history about several of the landmarks too.

You’ll notice that Croatian food is a blend of Mediterranean, Italian, and Eastern European cuisine with lots of delicious pasta, seafood, and other unique dishes.

Check Prices & Availability To A Dubrovnik Old Town Food Tour!

I loved all Croatian food but if I had to pick one dish that was my favorite, it would be Peka!

Peka is a traditional Croatian meal consisting of vegetables, potatoes, garlic, and meat (lamb or veal usually). The mixture is cooked slowly over hot coals for 4 hours. You won’t regret trying it…

4. Walk The Walls Of Dubrovnik

The City Walls really don’t need an introduction as they are massive and the first thing you will see when arriving in Dubrovnik.

Although the original walls were built in the 9th century, the walls you see today were constructed in the 14th and 15th centuries.

The total distance of the walls in a circular loop is 2 km or about 1.25 miles including four Fort Towers.

The four towers are Bokar Tower, St. John’s Fortress, Revelin Tower, and Minceta Tower. The views from the City Walls are some of the best in Dubrovnik so take your time and take it all in.

The Minceta Tower on the City Walls of Dubrovnik
Table and chairs on the City Walls with view of Lokrum Island and the Adriatic Sea in Dubrovnik, Croatia.
Walking on the Dubrovnik City Walls with views of the city and its red tile roofs and Mount Srd beyond.
Walking the City Walls of Dubrovnik with Lokrum Island, Adriatic Sea, and a boat passing by.

I was surprised to see that there are a handful of tiny cafes and bars where you can take a break to have a coffee or beer. Walking the city walls is by far one of the coolest activities in Dubrovnik to do!

Hours & Admission: Access to the City Walls is from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm (April – June), to 7:30 pm (July), to 7:00pm (August), to 6:30 pm (September) and to 5:30pm (October).

During the winter months from November through March hours are from 9:00 am to 3:00 pm.

Admission to the Walls is 35 Euro (~$39 US dollars) per adult but that also includes your entry into Fort Lovrijenac. So, make sure to visit the City Walls first!

Tip:  I recommend walking the walls first thing in the morning or late in the day (when the cruise ship crowds are gone) to avoid the massive crowds. Expect to spend 2-3 hours walking the city walls.

Old Town Walking Tour – This tour not only takes you throughout Old Town to learn about its history but along the City Walls too!

5. Go On A Game Of Thrones Tour

There are several types of tours available in Dubrovnik that can really appeal to all interests.

Popular walking tours ranging from history, food, wine, and of course Game of Thrones (GOT)!

If you aren’t familiar with Game of Thrones (what are you waiting for?!), many scenes from the show were filmed in Dubrovnik, aka Kings Landing.

It is exciting to stand in places that were used in the filming of the show. You can really imagine the scene in each location.

View of the Old Town Port, clear blue water, boats docked and the city walls of Dubrovnik.
View the Stradun and bell tower from up top on the City Walls in Dubrovnik old town.

The fun part of taking a Game of Thrones tour is you will get to learn so much about Dubrovnik’s history in addition to all the cool and fun facts about the GOT show.

Taking this tour is a great way to see the town in a different way and help you navigate on your own afterwards.

To learn more about taking a Game of Thrones tour in Dubrovnik, read my post on 5 Unique Ways To Experience Dubrovnik.

Book Your Game Of Thrones 2 Hour Old Town Tour Today!

Reserve A Full 7 Hour GOT Tour Of All Dubrovnik Film Locations!

Note: The second tour will take you to other sites in Dubrovnik outside of old town to places such as Lokrum Island and Trsteno Arboretum.

6. Walk Down The Jesuit Stairs

The Jesuit Steps lead from the Jesuit Church of St. Ignatius down to Gundulic Square. The beautiful Baroque-style steps might look familiar for two totally different reasons.

First, if you already went on a Game of Thrones tour, you’ll recognize the Jesuit Stairs as the site of the famous Walk of Shame scene in the show.

The character Cersei is forced to walk naked down the steps as the townspeople hissed “shame” as she went by.

It’s quite funny to hear the word shame several times as you can’t help yourself from saying it while walking down.

Walking up the Jesuit Stairs in Old Town Dubrovnik and a scene from the Game of Thrones show.
Standing at the top of the Jesuit Stairs also known as the "Shame" steps looking down with cafes at the bottom in Dubrovnik.

The second reason you might recognize the steps is that they were designed with many features of the Spanish Steps in Rome but just on a smaller scale.

Gundulic Square also happens to have an open-air market every morning until noon (minimal vendors on Sunday). This a wonderful place to get some fresh fruit, homemade products like candy, soap, or lavender.

Tip: If you happen to be in the square around noon, don’t be shocked to see an insane amount of pigeons flock to the square. I was initially a little frightened until a local said it was just a man who feeds them there daily. It is quite a sight to see!

7. Visit Rector Palace

The Rector’s Palace is located at the end of the Stradun in Luza Square. The palace was built in the late 15th century in a Gothic-Renaissance style and home of the rector who governed Dubrovnik.

The monthly elected rector was to remain at his post for the entire month (and not leave). The monthly position also prevented a sense of power from any one person governing for a long period of time.

The prisons were also housed here. I thought it was quite comical to learn that prisoners had to pay for their “room and board”.

I wonder what would have happened if they decided not to pay as they were already thrown in jail?

Courtyard of the Rector's Palace with beautiful white marble and excellent craftsmanship in the columns, staircase, and fountain.
Courtyard of the Rector's Palace with the statue of Miho Pracat at the base of the staircase.
Staircase railing with a sculpture of a hand holding the beginning of the wooden railing at the Rector's Palace in Dubrovnik, Croatia.

Today, the Rector’s Palace is a museum (Cultural History Museum) where you can see sculptures, art, furniture, and an endless amount of fascinating history.

For fans of Game of Thrones, you might recognize the Rector’s Palace as the Spice King’s mansion that Daenerys visits in Season 2, Episode 6.

The scene featured the staircase, courtyard, and interestingly enough the statue of Miho Pracat.

Miho Pracat was a wealthy ship owner that had left all his wealth to his beloved city of Dubrovnik. Because of his generous donation, the city honored him with the statue seen above.

The GOT creators were fascinated by Pracat’s history and included it in the scene as it seemed fitting as the Spice King was also a shipowner.

Hours & Admission: Open from 9:00 am to 6:00 pm daily (4:00 pm in the winter). The admission price for adults is 15 Euro. Recommend spending 30 minutes to one hour here.

See Rector’s Palace On This Old Town Tour!

8. Sponza Palace

Situated facing Orlando’s Column and off of Luza Square, the Sponza Palace displays a Gothic and Renaissance style.

Sponza Palace now holds the City Archives but, in the past, served as a customs house and a treasury/bank. The atrium alone has quite beautiful architecture and is a space that holds exhibits and venues.

Inside and around the outskirts of the atrium are several pictures and history of the Croatian water polo team.

Front entrance to beautifully built Sponza Palace in the old town of Dubrovnik.
The inside courtyard of the Sponza Palace with several columns, stonework, and open central ceiling in Dubrovnik.

Sadly, none of the information on this exhibit was in English so I didn’t get the chance to get all the details.

I found it interesting that the water polo team played in the ocean and partitioned it off as if it was in a pool! It seems that they overcame the lack of pools quite easily.

Inside the exhibit is a lot of information on Dubrovnik’s history and that of Orlando that is featured just outside.

Hours & Admission: Open daily from 8:00 am to 7:00 pm. The admission price to enter the Sponza Palace is 3 Euro. I recommend spending about 30 mins visiting.

9. Clock Tower & Orlando’s Column

The Clock Tower can be seen from pretty much anywhere in Old Town and is a gorgeous sight. The tower is located in Luza Square, standing at about 102 feet (31 meters). The bell chimes are distinctive and lovely to hear.

I was a little confused as to the timing of the bell ringing as it sometimes seemed “late” or more than expected.

It chimes twice on the hour and then again 3 minutes after to remind everyone that they are late! Maybe that is how the snooze button got started…

Two bronze (green now from the salty air) figurines take turns striking the bell with their hammers, one on each side.

The two figures are referred to as Maro and Baro. The originals can be seen inside the Rector’s Palace where they have been restored.

The Clock Tower at the end of the Stradun
Clock Tower next to the Sponza Palace

Located in the middle of Luza Square and in front of St. Blaise Church sits Orlando’s Column. Orlando’s Column is a stone sculpture carved in the early 1400’s of a courageous medieval knight (Orlando) who symbolized Dubrovnik’s sovereignty and freedom.

Many legends surround the tales of Orlando, even inspiring two renaissance poems, Orlando in Love and Mad Orlando. In 1825, Orlando’s column actually fell to the ground due to very strong winds.

It was removed and stored in the Sponza Palace until it returned to the square in 1878 where it has remained since.

Orlando does not seem like an imposing or even a large man. I wonder why the sculpture portrayed him as looking more like a boy…

Book This Guided Dubrovnik Old Town Tour!

10. Dubrovnik Cathedral

The Dubrovnik Cathedral, also known as the “city’s cathedral” stands grandly with ornate baroque architecture.

This Roman Catholic church features incredible artwork and sculptures with the most impressive painting at the main altar by Titian.

Front of the Dubrovnik Cathedral
Side view of Dubrovnik Cathedral

Titian, a famous Venetian painter, has several paintings that can be seen in museums throughout the world.

The church sits on the site of a previous Romanesque church that dates back to the 12th century. That church was destroyed in the 1667 earthquake and later the Dubrovnik Cathedral was built in its place by 1713.

11. Onofrio Fountain

The Onofrio Fountain can be seen right after you enter the Pile Gate (main entrance) into Old Town. It is a pretty well-known meeting spot in Old Town, especially for tours.

The Onofrio Fountain has 16 water taps that have been supplying the city with water since the 15th century.

All 16 water taps correspond to 16 different masked faces that spout water through their mouths. Many of the faces were damaged in the earthquake of 1667 but you can still see some pretty well.

The circular Onofrio Fountain in Old Town Dubrovnik with water flowing out of the different spouts.
One of 16 masked faces that is also a water spout on the Onofrio Fountain in old town Dubrovnik.

You can even fill up your water bottle as it is clean and refreshing, especially on a hot day. I admit I would never have thought it was safe to drink the water coming out until I saw many locals doing it and tried it too.

Tip: There is another smaller fountain that you can fill up your water bottle, located in Gundulic Square. The fountain is on a corner with a lion face that supplies clean water to drink!

A small water fountain with spout and a lantern above near cafes in Gundulic Square of Dubrovnik, Croatia.

12. St. Blaise Church

I found the history of St. Blaise rather interesting as you will soon realize how influential he was throughout Dubrovnik.

The church sits on Luza Square near the Rector’s Palace, Clock Tower, and Orlando’s Column. St. Blaise is well-known as the “patron saint of Dubrovnik” and protector of the loved city.

He supposedly protected Dubrovnik from Venetian invasion by warning the city so they could close the city gates and prepare for an attack in time.

Saint Blaise church in Dubrovnik with wide walkway of the Stradun in old town.

In appreciation of his good acts, they built the church in his honor and adorned statues of him all over the city.

Before you know it, you will say “there is that guy again!”. Statues of St. Blaise are located at the city gate entrances just to name a few.

He is instantly recognizable as he is always holding a model of the City of Dubrovnik as its protector. Note that the model is how Dubrovnik looked prior to the 1667 earthquake.

13. Climb The Steps To Fort Lovrijenac

Game of Thrones fans might know Fort Lovrijenac as the “Red Keep”. Regardless if you are a fan of GOT or not, Fort Lovrijenac is an impressive fort with spectacular views of Dubrovnik’s Old Town, City Walls, and Adriatic Sea.

It isn’t hard to see why this location was chosen as a fort as it sits up high on a cliff. It’s ability to see any potential invaders coming from all directions made it so valuable.

Before walking up the steps to Fort Lovrijenac, take a moment to enjoy the beauty of Pile Bay. Pile Bay gets its name as being closest to Pile Gate (main entrance) to Old Town.

Fort Lovrijenac above Pile Bay
View of Adriatic Sea and Lokrum Island from the top of Lovrijenac Fort

Pile Bay is also referred to “Blackwater Bay” where several scenes from Game of Thrones were filmed. The water here is so crystal clear that it looks like it could be a swimming pool!

There is a tiny pier where boats may dock and is a wonderful place to enjoy the bay’s serenity. On the left-hand side (facing the sea) is where kayak tours can be seen taking off from the small beach.

Next head up the steps (~ 200) to the Fort and notice the inscription carved into the stone over the entrance, “Non Bene Pro Toto Libertas Venditur Auro”.

It means “Freedom cannot be sold for all the gold of the world” which I find to be such an awesome quote.

The stone hallway in Lovrijenac Fort
View looking down to Pile Bay from up at Lovrijenac Fort

There are three levels to explore, with views that keep getting better as you climb one of my favorite things to do in Dubrovnik… This is one of the best things to do in Dubrovnik so don’t skip it!

Hours: The Fort is open from 8:00 am to 7:00 pm daily.

Tip: Admission is free if you already purchased your City Walls ticket, so visit the City Walls prior to visiting Fort Lovrijenac.

14. See Dubrovnik’s Coast By Kayak

If you enjoy being out on the water and are adventurous, take a kayak tour to cruise past the stunning coastline, sea caves, beaches, and around Lokrum Island.

It is a fun workout and a great way to see Dubrovnik from a different point of view than by land.

If you want to read more about taking a kayak tour in Dubrovnik, read my post 5 Unique Ways To Experience Dubrovnik.

For those that prefer to relax on the water, consider booking a sunset sailing excursion, some of which take you past the nearby islands of Lokrum, Mljet and Korcula.

Book The Best Kayaking Tour Of Dubrovnik’s Coast!

Kayaks on Pile Bay with Fort Lovrijenac in background.

15. Enjoy The View From Mount Srd

While touring Dubrovnik, you will likely look up and see Mount Srd in the backdrop. Go at sunset for some of the best views in Dubrovnik from high above. There are three ways to get up to the top of Mt. Srd.

If you are fairly fit and looking to get in some cardio, you can hike up to the top which takes about 60-90 minutes.

If you are short on time and don’t feel like sweating it out to the summit, then you can take the Cable Car up.

At the time of my visit, the cable car was shut down but upon checking recently it is running again. The cable car takes just a few minutes to reach the top.

View of Dubrovnik and Lokrum Island from the top of Mount Srd.
View of Dubrovnik from the top of Mount Srd

If you have a rental car, I don’t recommend driving to the top as the road is tight allowing only one car at a time.

So, unless you are prepared to go in reverse down a curving mountain road at times, taking an Uber is much easier!

Once at the top, wander different vantage points for some epic views! The Homeland War Museum is also located at the top.

It displays an array of photos, items, and information on the Homeland War that lasted from 1991-1995. You quickly get a sense of the impact the war had on Croatia and its people.

Tip: After exploring the museum and taking photos, head over to the Panorama Restaurant for drinks and a sunset view that won’t disappoint!

During busy times, contact the restaurant ahead of time to reserve a table right along the railing for the best viewing.

16. Ferry Over To Lokrum Island

If you are needing a little break from the crowds of Dubrovnik, hop on a ferry and head over to Lokrum Island.

You will be transported to another world in just 10 minutes and to a nature lover’s retreat. Lokrum is the closest island off of Dubrovnik and can be seen from several spots around the city.

Within minutes of getting off of the ferry, you will be greeted by one of Lokrum’s many locals, that is the peacocks and rabbits! It’s entertaining to see so many of them running wild.

If you brought your swimsuit, take a dip in the ocean at one of many places to swim or at the small saltwater lake called the Dead Sea.

Lokrum Island
The saltwater lake, the Dead Sea
View of the bay where the ferry docks on Lokrum Island.
The gardens on Lokrum Island

And if you forgot your suit that’s ok too as there is a nude beach (head left from the ferry docks all the way until you see signs with FKK)!

Enjoy the solitude and beauty of the botanical garden and old monastery. You might remember seeing these locations used in the show Game of Thrones where they posed as “Qarth”.

Tip: Catch the ferry over to Lokrum from the Old Port which takes off about every 15 – 30 minutes depending on the season.

Although there are restaurants and bars on the island, I recommend taking some sandwiches and enjoying a picnic at one of several places on the island.

Admission: Roundtrip ferry service is 27 Euro per adult and includes entry to the island. Spend at least 2 hours but you can easily spend a full day here too.

17. Grab A Drink At A Cliff Bar

Who doesn’t like getting a drink on the edge of a medieval cliff overlooking vibrant blue waters? It is truly a magical experience with epic views.

There are two bars that will quench your thirst and provide a relaxing spot to see the sunset at.

Many refer to them as “hole in the wall” bars, but seriously, who needs a high-end bar with views like this?

Coming from the direction of the Jesuit Stairs walk towards the sea until you can only go left or right. Turn right and follow the sign that says, “Cold Drinks With The Most Beautiful View” to Café Buza Bar.

Sign to "cold drinks"

The entrance will be on your left a few minutes’ walk up the steps. Walking through the small opening in the wall will reveal a tiny cliffside bar with sensational views of the sea and Lokrum Island.

On a different day, make your way to Café Bar Bard, which has no signs. But as you enter through the wall, you will see a much more spacious cliff bar than Buza.

There are slabs of rock platforms with table and chairs scattered to make a very picturesque spot to sip a drink and take in the sunset.

View from Cafe Buza Bar
Buza Bard Cliff Bar looking out to Lokrum Island

It is a little harder to find Café Bar Bard but when you see the sign I mention above, go left instead of the direction of Buza Bar. Whichever cliff bar you go to, it will be one of the most memorable things to do in Dubrovnik.

Tips: Don’t come to either of these spots expecting a full bar and remember you are there for the view and ambiance.

Find a bathroom before you go as there are no toilets at the bars! I learned the hard way and had to hold it until I left…

18. Spend The Day A Dubrovnik Beach

If the temperatures are warm and its sunny out, plan a day at one of the best beaches in Dubrovnik. The best locations to enjoy some beach time are:

Banje Beach: This is the closest beach to the Old Town area of Dubrovnik but that means it will likely be the busiest. You have the option to rent a beach chair or pull up a seat with your towel. It is about a 15 min walk from Old Town.

Sveti Jakov: Sveti Jakov is about a 20 min walk or 10 min drive from Banje Beach in the direction of the airport.

Bellevue Beach: This beach is on the opposite side of Old Town Dubrovnik as the previous two beaches in front of the Hotel Bellevue. It is about a 5–10-minute drive from Old Town and easy to walk to. But if you plan on going to Lapad or further, then I recommend driving or getting an Uber.

Lapad Beach: Lapad is about a 15-minute drive from Old Town so driving there yourself or hopping in an Uber is the easiest. Stop off at Bellevue before or on your way back to Dubrovnik. Lapad is only a 5–10-minute drive further than Bellevue Beach.

President Beach: This beach is even further out than Lapad and is a beautiful beach to visit. There are chairs for rent right in front of Hotel President.

Tip: Keep in mind that many of Croatia’s beaches are not necessarily sandy but pebbly or slabs of rock.

Depending on the beach, I would recommend bringing water shoes when going into the water.

The beach at Betina Cave on the kayaking tour

19. Visit Tranquil Trsteno Arboretum

Trsteno Arboretum is a beautiful arboretum about 30-minutes north along the coast from Dubrovnik.

If you have the time, this Dubrovnik activity is a treat to see as it is situated on a beautiful section of the Adriatic Sea.

It boasts lavish and elegant gardens that seem fit for royalty. Upon entering your eyes might be struck in awe of the Renaissance style and such a variety of trees and plants.

The most famous residents of Trsteno, are the two gigantic plane trees that are over 500 years old and quite amazing!

The arboretum has been around since the late 15th century, and I can see why with all of its beauty and charm.

For Game of Thrones fans, Trsteno Arboretum was featured in several episodes as the gardens at Kings Landing.

Hours & Admission: Trsteno Arboretum is open from 7:00 am to 7:00 pm daily. Admission for adults is 10 Euro.

This Game of Thrones Tour Includes Trsteno Arboretum!

Dubrovnik city cats sleeping in front of the Rector's Palace

Where To Eat In Dubrovnik

Croatian Food is incredible and I more than enjoyed every single meal I had in Dubrovnik! I pretty much raved at how good each meal was.

The food is a mixture of Italian, Greek, and their own variation added in that is superb. Here are some restaurants that were excellent in every way (and recommended by locals).

Charming restaurant on an small street in Old Town Dubrovnik

Pizzeria Castro: The best pizza in Dubrovnik located in Gundulic Square near the Jesuit Stairs.

Lucin Kantun: Serving local Croatian food with warm and filling meals such as the yummy pork medallions with sautéed honey and onions or the shrimp risotto. Lucin is located on the north side of the Stradun along the steps.

Taj Mahal: Nope, don’t be expecting Indian food! It is actually Bosnian food and is very centered around different meats and is a meat lover’s dream! Located on the south side of the Stradun on a charming walkway that was fun to explore.

Be prepared to wait as it is a busy place. I gave my name and went to get a drink at a nearby bar during my wait. I ordered the Genghis Khan Platter that was a great variety of meats to try and was so good.

Proto Fish Restaurant: Right off of the Stradun, this fish and seafood restaurant is excellent. No better way to start off your meal than with oysters! You can’t go wrong with any meal here.

Tinel Cafe: Hands down, Tinel Café had the best coffee that I tried in all of Dubrovnik. It definitely had a local vibe to it which made me like it even better.

An old staircase and ruins of a building on an alleyway in Dubrovnik

Accommodations In Dubrovnik

The best way to see Dubrovnik is by walking so staying in or as close to Old Town is ideal. Anything that is inside the City Walls is considered Old Town.

The best accommodations in Dubrovnik are located in and close to Old Town.

Note: As of 2023, to reduce the noise within old town area of Dubrovnik you can no longer use roller bags. This ONLY applies to lodging inside the city walls!

Pulling them over the cobblestones creates an unpleasant sound that both locals and visitors want to avoid.

What to do about it? Check with your hotel to find out the luggage drop area or city gate to arrange for it to be transported for you. Or carry it yourself as there is a hefty fine if you ignore the law.

View of Dubrovnik from the Airbnb apartment

Dubrovnik Tours To Take

Full-Day Wine Tasting Tour – Are you a wine lover and want to try sipping some Croatian wines? This Dubrovnik tour will take you on a full day of wine tasting on the Peljesac peninsula and a stop in Ston.

Sunset Dinner Cruise – Relax and enjoy the stunning Croatian sunset as you eat dinner along Dubrovnik’s coast.

Sea Kayaking Tour – Want to get a view of Dubrovnik from the water and get in a workout? This kayaking tour takes you along Dubrovnik’s coast, around Lokrum Island, and to a dazzling beach cave!

Game of Thrones Tour – See all the top filming locations in Dubrovnik on a half day or full day Games of Throne themed tour.

Old Town & City Walls Tour – Learn all about Dubrovnik’s history on this fascinating walking tour that includes the city walls!

Where Is Dubrovnik Located?

Dubrovnik is located in the southernmost region of Croatia and situated along the Dalmatian Coast of the Adriatic Sea.

It is one of the most visited areas of Croatia and might be my favorite with all of its beauty and charm.

The Adriatic Sea separates Croatia from its next-door neighbor Italy directly across from it. If sailing across from Croatia to Italy, it would take a full day or about 200 miles.

Dubrovnik is about 3.5 to 4 hours south of Split and 6.5 hours south of Plitvice Lakes known for the land of waterfalls.

View of Adriatic Sea from Lokrum Island

Dubrovnik is a great place to start one’s trip before heading north to see other places in Croatia. The two best day trips from Dubrovnik to take are to Montenegro and Bosnia which are each only 1-2 hours by car.

For more info on taking road trips to Montenegro and Bosnia, explore my posts:

Road Trip From Dubrovnik To Kotor, Montenegro

15 Best Things To Do In Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina: 2 Day Itinerary

The airport that you want to fly into is the Dubrovnik Airport (DBV). To book your airfare to Dubrovnik, go to here and find the best flight deals available!

Best Time To Visit Dubrovnik

Although Croatia doesn’t see harsh winters like the rest of Europe, the temperatures do drop and it can get windy! The best time to visit Dubrovnik with good weather is between May and October.

Mid-summer might see the warmest beach days, but you will be fighting with an unbelievable amount of people. July and August are the busiest especially with cruise ships coming in.

For that reason, I would recommend May and the first part of June or September and October. That way you should still get great weather with fewer crowds.

That said, the winter months have mild temperatures and are a top destination in Europe year-round because of this. Dubrovnik does not see snow just some rain and temperatures between 45 F and 55 F.

Close up of the Clock Tower

Tips For Visiting Dubrovnik

  • Whenever you visit a museum, restaurant or café, take advantage of having a free bathroom before you leave.
  • The majority of locals speak English which makes it very helpful to engage with them.
  • As of 2023, Croatia switched to using the Euro as their currency over the previous Kuna.
  • Tips are not expected but if service is good at restaurants, cafes, and spas, tip 10% or round up your bill.
  • To avoid crowds from cruise ships, spend time exploring in the mornings and late afternoons.
  • You can check cruise ship schedules coming in and out of Dubrovnik.
  • Carry cash as many small vendors will take nothing else. ATMs will provide the best conversion rate.
  • When using an ATM, make sure you decline the conversion when asked for a better rate.
  • Visitors from America can drive in Croatia with their U.S. driver’s license.

How To Get Around Dubrovnik

If you plan to stay primarily in or near Dubrovnik old town then you do not need a car. You can get around on foot or take a taxi if needed.

Dubrovnik is a very walkable city but keep in mind that there are a ton of steps and not ideal for those that have mobility issues.

If you plan on taking some day trips or continue on to other areas of Croatia, then renting a car is the best option.

There is no good train network like many countries in Europe so driving or taking a bus is best. Personally, I thought driving was very easy with nice roads throughout the country.

I would recommend renting a car at the end of your stay in Dubrovnik before heading to another city as parking in the city can be expensive.

Search The Best Car Rental Deals Today!

What To Pack For Dubrovnik

FAQ About Visiting Dubrovnik

Is Dubrovnik Worth Visiting?

Yes! Dubrovnik is a wonderful city to visit with its medieval walls, beautiful architecture, and lovely setting along the Adriatic Sea. There is a ton of history and sights to see including visiting nearby islands and eating delicious Croatian food.

What Is Dubrovnik Known For?

Dubrovnik is known for its well-preserved medieval old town perched above the gorgeous Adriatic Sea. It has a fairytale quality to it with idyllic islands along its coast, magnificent architecture, incredible Croatian food, and a rich history.

How Many Days Do You Need In Dubrovnik?

Visiting Dubrovnik for 3 – 4 days allows you to see all the main sights and go on a few tours. If you have time, extend add a few days to explore the nearby islands and a day trip to Kotor, Montenegro.

Is Dubrovnik A Walkable City?

Dubrovnik is a very walkable city as most of the attractions are within the old town center or in walking distance of it. Keep in mind that there are a ton of steps so unless you are in the center of old town, expect to be going up and down steps frequently.

How Long Does It Take To Walk Around The City Walls of Dubrovnik?

It takes about 2 hours to walk the entire city wall of Dubrovnik. But if you want to take a lot of photos and possibly get a coffee or drink at one of the bars, then give yourself 3 hours to visit.

Where Is Better Split or Dubrovnik?

Both Split and Dubrovnik are incredible cities in Croatia to visit about 3 hours apart along the gorgeous Adriatic Sea. Each is worth spending time in for their rich history, but if you can only pick one, here is a quick summary of each.

Dubrovnik is a picturesque medieval city with its tall city walls encircling the most charming old town that has a ton of things to see all within walking distance. It can get extremely busy with tourists during the summer days, but the mornings and evenings have a romantic and relaxed ambiance. Overall, I think the food options are a little better in Dubrovnik to sample traditional Croatian food and has a magical feel about it.

Split is a larger city, more spread out and as whole there is less to do in Split outside the old town and the waterfront areas. But Split is one of the best places to stay as a base for several top day trips to the islands, other smaller towns, waterfalls, and more. Split is beautiful and a little less crowded than Dubrovnik and known for better nightlife.

Is A Car Necessary In Dubrovnik?

If you are staying in or near Dubrovnik old town then you do not need a car. But if you choose to go on any day trips or head to other regions in Croatia getting a car is recommended.

Plan your day trips at the end of your time in Dubrovnik so you can delay renting the car and avoid high parking fees in town.

What Currency Is Used In Croatia?

As of 2023, Croatia is now using the Euro as their currency. Prior to this, Croatia was using the Kuna.

But Before You Go…

If you have an extra day to your stay in Dubrovnik, then take a day trip to Kotor, Montenegro! It is a beautiful and easy drive with the most stunning views of the Bay of Kotor along the way…

Read all about visiting Montenegro and what to do in Kotor and nearby towns in my post What To See On A Dubrovnik Day Trip To Kotor!

Got Travel Insurance?

Don’t leave home without travel insurance as you never know what might happen on a trip! It is always when you least expect it that something can go wrong like getting sick, in an accident or cancellation of some sort.

Get a no-obligation quote from two trusted travel insurance companies for peace of mind on your next trip!

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Looking For More Related Travel Inspiration?

Best 10 Day Croatia Itinerary Plus Travel Tips You Want To Have

5 Special Ways To Experience Dubrovnik

19 Top Things To Do In Split Old Town On Croatia’s Adriatic Coast

9 Best Day Trips From Split, Croatia That Are Spectacular

15 Best Things To Do In Trogir Old Town, A Fairytale-Like Escape

Road Trip From Dubrovnik To Kotor, Montenegro

12 Top Things To See In Zadar, Croatia

Visiting Plitvice Lakes: How To Have The Best Experience

15 Best Things To Do In Mostar, Bosnia & Herzegovina: 2 Day Itinerary

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Thinking about visiting Dubrovnik, Croatia? Dubrovnik is the most beautiful medieval old town I have ever seen with idyllic beaches, Lokrum Island and stunning sunsets! Explore the ultimate things to do in Dubrovnik by reading this post before you go! #Dubrovnik #Croatia #visitDubrovnik #croatiatravel #europetravel

Vanessa Shields

Vanessa Shields is the founder of Traveling Ness helping people with trip ideas, itineraries, travel planning, and boosting confidence for female travelers to take a solo trip. She has been a travel writer and content creator since 2019.

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    1. Thank you Sandra! I agree, Zadar and Split are wonderful cities to visit. Dubrovnik is one of my favorites as it has so much charm, history and gorgeous buildings. Another beautiful city to visit is Trogir that is near Split and one I highly recommend. It is small but lovely. I wrote a post on it if you happen to go one day! 🙂

  1. You seem to have seen the main places that most people go to . Croatia has so many other gems ie I think the town Sibenik and the surrounding region are amongst the most beautiful in Croatia. You visited the Krka falls which is nice but places like Rogoznica, Vodice, Tribunj , island Murter connected by 50 metre bridge, Kornati archipelago and Primosten are all beautiful places in the area and Sibenik after Dubrovnik one of the most beautiful Medi Evil cities in a stunning harbour. Whilst here visit Solaris beach and the Etno village restaurant and try Veal or Octopus Peka.

    1. Thanks for the great tips Dan! I definitely plan to go back and see many of the areas that I didn’t get a chance to see on this trip. I look forward to seeing all these beautiful places next time. 🙂

  2. Thank you for this awesome article! I’m planning a trip to Croatia, Greece & Albania in the near future. Your pictures are beautiful, and the way you’ve written is really making me excited for my trip. The specific tips are super helpful too. Happy traveling!

    1. You’re very welcome! I’m glad that you can use the information and tips from my post. Oh, you will have a wonderful time as Croatia is such an amazing country. I still need to visit Greece and Albania, they are on my list! Let me know if you have any questions and also read my other post “5 Special Ways to Experience Dubrovnik” if you get the chance. It goes into more detail on some great experiences! 🙂

  3. What a great article Vanessa!!! Went to Dubrovnik last summer and loved it. Still, I didn’t know a whole bunch about it after reading your post lol. We also stopped at the Buza Bar and it was super refreshing. And also agree on the city wall…it gets so hot and there are so many people and everyone walk in one direction so it can get hectic for sure.

    1. I’m so glad you loved Dubrovnik too! There is so much to do there that I think a second or third trip is necessary and a good excuse to go back! Haha yes visiting the City Walls are best early or late in the day for sure. 🙂

  4. Really interesting post, great tips for hose who visit the city! I was in Dubrovnik when I was a teenager and the architecture didn’t interest me. Your post made me want to go back and see it with different eyes!

    I really like the style of your blog too, well done!

    1. Thank you so much Anna! Dubrovnik really has so many activities and sights to see. Hopefully, you will get the opportunity to go back soon! I really appreciate the wonderful feedback. 🙂

    1. Oh, I am so happy it has inspired you to visit Dubrovnik! It is a beautiful city to explore in. I have another post coming out on some unique experiences that made my trip even better, so stay tuned. Thanks again Wendy!

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