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#Dubrovnik

What to do and see in Dubrovnik

The pearl of the Adriatic
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A few words about Dubrovnik

Croatia

Dubrovnik, with its medieval architecture, impressive walls, and churches, stands out against the backdrop of the Adriatic Sea. Here, you will discover a world where history and beauty uniquely blend in a cosmopolitan atmosphere. 

With its red-tiled rooftops, cobblestone streets, and beautiful beaches, Dubrovnik has become the ultimate destination. Begin your vacation in Dubrovnik by strolling through the Old Town, ascending the ancient walls, cruising to the island of Lokrum, taking a cable car ride for the most incredible view of Mount Srd, and exploring the filming locations of Game of Thrones.

 In this article, you will learn everything about your vacation in Dubrovnik. Read on for the best things to see and do in Croatia’s most tourist-friendly destination.

The landscape is filled with red-tiled roofs. The church bell tower protrudes, and behind this entire scene, there is a lush green mountain.
Experience a unique adventure in the ultimate summer destination in Dubrovnik.

Sights in Dubrovnik

1. Take a walk in the Old Town

Begin your exploration of Dubrovnik through the Old Town and travel back to the Middle Ages as the Baroque architecture of the buildings surprises you. Traditional stone buildings, narrow alleyways, and unique churches await your discovery. The Old Town is considered a UNESCO World Heritage site and is renowned for its preserved architecture. The most famous central street you’ll walk along is Stradun, which connects the main entrance gate to the city, the Pile Gate, with the Ploce Gate. 

From one gate to the other, you will encounter cobblestone streets, squares, alleys, taverns, pubs, and all the city’s top attractions. Explore the Orlando Column, the Clock Tower, the Rector’s Palace, the Church of Saint Blaise, the Cathedral, the Sponza Palace, and the iconic Jesuit Stairs.

Tip: Vehicle traffic, including cars, motorcycles, and even bicycles, is prohibited within the Old Town.

2. Discover the view from the walls of the Old Town.

Visit Dubrovnik’s most significant landmark, which is none other than the old city walls. The old city walls are regarded as the strongest medieval defensive fortifications and were built to protect the city from attacks and hostile incursions. 

The two gates were locked at night to prevent enemy invasions. Impressive is their length, reaching approximately 2 kilometers, while the height in some places reaches 25 meters. On the walls, you will find towers, forts, bastions, and turrets. Thanks to the high-quality stone used in their construction, you will discover the walls almost in their original form. The most photographed fortress is the Minceta Tower. 

Furthermore, you will have the opportunity to enjoy the Old Town from an incredible panoramic view. You can enter the walls from three specific points: from the Inner Pile Gate, from the Fort of St. Lucas on St. Dominic’s Street, and from St. John’s Fortress. The walls can only be walked counterclockwise

Tip: Visit the old city walls in the late afternoon when the temperature is not as high, and wear athletic shoes because you will need about 2 hours to walk them.

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Cruise in Dubrovnik
Experience a unique sunset  cruise in Dubrovnik. Your dream journey begins here. The city takes on an entirely different character during the sunset, with the colors of the sky and the sea creating a unique atmosphere.

3. Explore the Rector's Palace

Ever wonder what else you can see and do in Dubrovnik?

 The Rector’s Palace is constructed in a blend of Renaissance, Gothic, and Baroque architectural styles and stands as the symbol of the republic. It was used by the Rector as his seat since he was both a political and judicial leader representing the sovereignty of the Republic. Today, the palace operates as a museum, housing a collection of objects, artworks, and paintings that narrate the city’s history and cultural heritage

 

4. Take in the view from Srd Hill

One activity you must include in your trip to Dubrovnik is a ride on the cable car, as in just a few minutes, you’ll find yourself on Srd Hill. The view of the city and the Adriatic coast from up here is breathtaking, as you’ll be situated 412 meters above the city. So, make sure to visit one of the most photographed spots in the city of Dubrovnik. 

Behind this impressive scenery lies a somber history, as from this vantage point, the old town was bombed, resulting in significant damage. The only place that remained untouched by this attack is the Imperial Fortress located on Srd Hill.

 

Tip: If you want to have dinner during sunset hours, visit the Panorama restaurant. However, be sure to make a reservation in advance to secure your table.

A lush landscape with a tree where 2 cable cars are ascending to Mount Srd in Dubrovnik. Also, there is a stone chapel with its bell tower.
Enjoy the incredible view of Dubrovnik from Mount Srd by taking a cable car ride.

5. Take a cruise to the island of Lokrum

The most popular short excursion, just a 10-minute boat ride away from Dubrovnik, is to the island of Lokrum. Escape the city’s hustle and bustle, swim in crystal-clear waters, and enjoy this lush oasis.

Here, you’ll find trails, forests, and even peacocks. Relax and savor your summer vacation. You can explore the entire island on foot, but don’t forget to wear athletic shoes as the terrain can be uneven. Also, visit the Benedictine Monastery and the botanical garden.

Amidst the terracotta landscape of the old town of Dubrovnik, in the distance, you can see the lush green island of Lokrum.
The enchanting island of Lokrum, a paradise in the Adriatic Sea.
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Cruise to the island of Lokrum
Experience a unique adventure by taking a  cruise to the island of Lokrum. This island is renowned for its natural beauty, lush gardens, and the crystal-clear waters that surround it. With a cruise to the island of Lokrum, you’ll have the chance to experience this magical wonderland.

6. Swim at Dubrovnik's most famous beaches

Dubrovnik, as a coastal city, is the perfect place to relax and enjoy your summer by swimming and sunbathing on one of its beaches. Banje Beach is one of the most famous beaches in Dubrovnik.

 It’s located near the city center, right in front of the Ploce Gate, and offers stunning views of the Dubrovnik city walls and the old harbor. It’s a pebble beach equipped with sun loungers, umbrellas, and a beach bar. Additionally, Copacabana Beach is one of the largest beaches in Dubrovnik, situated in the Babin Kuk area, and it offers various activities, including water sports. If you prefer a quieter beach with crystal-clear waters, visit Sveti Jakov Beach, which is a 25-minute drive from the city center. Enjoy your time in the sun!

Tip: Most beaches have pebbles, so be sure to bring along water shoes for your comfort.

7. Visit the Lovrijenac Fortress

The Lovrijenac Fortress, also known as the ‘Gibraltar of Dubrovnik,’ is one of Croatia’s most significant historical landmarks. It was built to protect the city from both land and sea invasions and served as a defensive stronghold for the entire city of Dubrovnik.

The fortress has three levels, with artillery positions, watchtowers, and a triangular shape. Besides its defensive significance, it is renowned for its theatrical performances. You’ll need to climb 200 steps, but you’ll be rewarded with an incredible view of the sea, with the sunset turning the scene into an idyllic spectacle. Additionally, it is another Game of Thrones filming location, as many scenes were shot there.

The stone fortress of Fort Lovrijenac is built on top of a high cliff. Below it lies the Adriatic Sea with people kayaking.
The most impressive fortress in Dubrovnik.

8. St. John's Fortress

The Fortress of St. John is also part of the city walls of Dubrovnik, built to protect the city’s harbor during the Venetian rule. The fortress takes its name from St. John the Baptist, who is the patron saint of Dubrovnik. In the past, due to frequent pirate raids, they raised a heavy metal chain from this fortress to the Kase Jetty in the harbor to prevent enemy ships from entering.

Curious about what’s inside the Fortress of St. John?

Visit the aquarium on the first floor and continue your exploration at the Maritime Museum.

9. The Franciscan Monastery

Visit one of the oldest landmarks in the city of Dubrovnik, which, despite the damage it suffered, was reconstructed in the 17th century. Its architecture will leave you in awe, and inside, you’ll find the library, boasting over 30,000 volumes, a medicinal garden where herbs and plants with healing properties are cultivated, as well as numerous works of art and exhibits. Enjoy the tranquility and the unique atmosphere in the Franciscan Monastery garden.

At the Franciscan Monastery, you’ll also find the oldest pharmacy in Europe, which is open to the public and first opened its doors 700 years ago. When you see it, you’ll notice Venetian architecture with impressive wooden signs and antique items. You’ll have the opportunity to explore up close the exhibition collection of ancient pharmaceutical objects and tools that were used in the past.

10. Onofrio's Large Fountain

The Great Onofrio’s Fountain is one of the must-see attractions during your trip to Dubrovnik. It was constructed by the Italian architect Onofrio della Cava, and its purpose was to provide clean drinking water to the city’s residents. What immediately catches your attention is its circular shape with the lion sculptures, symbolizing strength and protection. Relax and refresh yourself with the water flowing over the intricate sculptures. Across from the main wall, you’ll find people climbing over the small statue of the old aqueduct. This is a tradition where if someone manages to balance on top and take off their shirt, they will have luck in their love life.

Tip: The water is drinkable, so make sure to have a bottle with you to refill whenever you want.

Inside the central square of Dubrovnik.
The magnificent water treasure of the Great Onofrio's Fountain.

11. The Church of St. Blaise and the Orlando Column

In your Dubrovnik itinerary, don’t forget to include the Church of St. Blaise. This Baroque church was designed by the Venetian architect Marino Gropelli. What makes it famous is the story that St. Blaise visited the priest of Dubrovnik’s cathedral in a dream after he had died, informing him of the impending Venetian attack on the city, which ultimately came true. 

Similarly, the Orlando Column, located right in front of the church, symbolizes the independence, freedom, and justice of the city. According to legend, the knight Orlando helped the people of Dubrovnik maintain their freedom by repelling invaders.

The Church of Saint Blaise with its distinctive architecture in Dubrovnik.
Discover the grandeur and religious heritage of the Church of Saint Blaise in Dubrovnik.

12. The Dubrovnik Cathedral

Visit the Roman Catholic Cathedral in Dubrovnik, Croatia, designed by Andrea Buffalini in Baroque architecture. The interior is equally impressive, featuring paintings from the 16th to the 18th century, with the standout being the Assumption of the Virgin. Finally, take a close look at the Cathedral Treasury with its relics.

Accommodation in Dubrovnik

Accommodation in the Old Town

The best area to stay in Dubrovnik is the Old Town.

 Staying in the Old Town will offer you an unforgettable experience, as you’ll be within walking distance of the city’s main attractions, such as the Franciscan Monastery, the city walls, the Rector’s Palace, and the Church of St. Blaise. In addition to the sights, you can enjoy the nightlife, shopping in the stores, and dining in the restaurants, all within the unique and picturesque medieval landscape.

 Stay at the most central and modern hotel in the Old Town. Villa Leoni is located above the popular Banje Beach and just 400 meters away from the famous walls of Dubrovnik that surround the Old Town. It offers modern accommodations and provides the most incredible view of the Old Town of Dubrovnik and the island of Lokrum.

Book your accommodation early and secure lower prices
Now, you can discover the magic of the old town with comfort and style by making a reservation at one of the wonderful hotels located within close proximity to all the attractions

Accommodations in Dubrovnik

Accommodation in Ploce

Stay among the most luxurious seaside hotels, located on the eastern side of the city. Within close proximity, you’ll have the opportunity to visit the medieval tower of Saint Dominic, which houses a variety of paintings. Similarly, you’ll be near the city center, just a 10-minute walk away, while enjoying your peace away from the hustle and bustle.

 So, stay at Villa Uniquewhich offers a view of both the mountain and the sea. It’s only a few minutes away from Gornja Vala Beach and Podaca Beach. Additionally, they provide bicycle rental services. However, if you visit during the winter, they have an outdoor fireplace.

 

Accommodation in Lapad

During your summer stay in Dubrovnik, Lapad is the ideal choice as it is nestled between beautiful beaches equipped with bars, sun loungers, and water sports facilities. Another feature that makes this area famous is its surroundings of lush green landscapes and parks, where you can enjoy nature and take relaxing walks. 

The Grand Hotel Park is located in the center of the Lapad peninsula in Dubrovnik, just 100 meters from the beach. It boasts a large outdoor pool, a modern spa, and a restaurant where you can savor Croatian and international cuisine. The Old Town of Dubrovnik is 3 kilometers away, and you can easily reach it by bus, taxi, or car.

A girl holds a camera to her face, with the unique view of Dubrovnik from above visible in the background, featuring red-tiled roofs and the Adriatic Sea in the distance.
Capture your unique moments on vacation, too.

Useful tips for Dubrovnik

Below, you will find the 6 most useful tips to keep in mind during your trip to Dubrovnik: 

1. Currency: The local currency is the Kuna, but Euros are widely accepted, and prices are often displayed in both currencies. 

2. Cash: Carry cash with you as many places may not accept card payments. 

3. Sightseeing: Make a list of the main attractions you want to visit, such as the city walls, Rector’s Palace, and the Franciscan Monastery. Consider purchasing the Dubrovnik Pass for €35, which grants you free entry to top attractions in the city, free bus transportation within the city, and special discounts at restaurants and other activities.

4. Weather: If you visit Dubrovnik in the summer, be prepared for high temperatures. Make sure to have a hat, sunscreen, and water with you and explore the sights in the late afternoon to avoid the heat. 

5. Transportation: Cars are not allowed within the Old Town. Wear comfortable shoes to explore all the attractions on foot. If you have a car, parking can be expensive, starting from €8 per hour the closer you want to park to the city center. 

6. Dubrovnik Summer Festival: Every summer, the Dubrovnik Summer Festival takes place. It’s worth checking the festival schedule for cultural events and performances during your visit.

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