Dubrovnik is a medieval walled city located on Croatia's Dalmatian Coast overlooking the Adriatic Sea. Dubrovnik serves as an important coastal city and seaport. Its old town is a UNESCO site with well preserved Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque architecture. It is one of Croatia's most popular tourist destinations, known for its well-preserved Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque architecture. The city has a total population of 28,434 as of 2023.
Dubrovnik's nearby coastal escapes include swimming and sea kayaking tours to secluded beaches, exploring the verdant nature reserve of Lokrum Island right offshore and ferry trips to the picturesque Elaphiti Islands for village wandering, botanical gardens and sandy beaches. Inland day trips reach Karlovac’s star-shaped old town or tour regional wineries along the Pelješac Peninsula.
Visitors can taste black cuttlefish risotto, seafood buzara stew or slow-cooked meat specialties paired with local wines. Staying for 2 to 5 days allows time to uncover history while relaxing in Dubrovnik’s coastal views. Dubrovnik rewards travelers with timeless architecture and time-honored culture. Dubrovnik is located in the Central European Time (CET) zone. The standard time is defined as UTC+1. This means Dubrovnik is 1 hour ahead of Coordinated Universal Time.
Listed below are the best things to do in Dubrovnik.
- The City Walls. The City Walls are a series of stone walls surrounding Dubrovnik's old town in Croatia. Built mainly from the 13th to 17th centuries, the walls are 1940 meters long, up to 25 meters high and
have never been breached. They are one of Croatia's top attractions. Visitors can walk along the top of the walls for 1.5-2 hours to enjoy views of the old town, the Adriatic Sea and landmarks like Fort Lovrijenac. There are cafes to stop at and guided tours available. The main entrance is at Pile Gate. The walls and old town together are a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
- Old Town. Old Town is a well-preserved medieval walled city on Croatia's Dalmatian Coast. It is known for its red-tiled roofs, cobblestone lanes and imposing 11th-century defensive walls. The pedestrian-only zone provides many history and culture-oriented activities. Visitors can walk the 2 kilometers (1.2 miles) long city walls, visit the alleys and squares like in the main street Stradun, visit cultural sites like the Rector's Palace museum and relax at cliffside cafes overlooking the sea.
- Visit Lokrum Island. Visit Lokrum Island, which is a protected nature reserve located 0.6 kilometers (0.3 miles) off the coast of Dubrovnik, Croatia. Key things to do include visiting the 11th century Benedictine monastery ruins, exploring the lush botanical gardens, hiking up to Fort Royal for panoramic views, swimming at the main Lokrum beach, floating in the “Dead Sea” saltwater lake, seeing Game of Thrones filming locations and spotting wild peacocks. Ferries to Lokrum run regularly from Dubrovnik's Old Port from April to November and cost €18 ($20, £15) roundtrip, which includes entrance to the nature reserve. Lokrum makes for a scenic day trip away from the bustle of Dubrovnik's Old Town.
- Kayaking Tour (both regular and sea kayaking). Kayaking tours (both regular and sea kayaking) in Dubrovnik offer a unique way to explore the city's coastline, surrounding islands and hard-to-reach beaches and caves that are only accessible from the water. Guides lead small groups on 2.5+ hour paddling excursions departing from Pile Bay near Dubrovnik's walled Old Town. Tours take kayakers around Lokrum Island to see scenic cliffs, caves and beaches while stopping to swim, snorkel and relax. Some tours focus just on Dubrovnik's Old Town walls area, while others venture out to the nearby Elaphiti Islands for longer full-day trips. Kayaking allows visitors to experience Dubrovnik's natural beauty up close from an exciting new vantage point.
- The Cable Car Ride. The cable car runs from the city up Mount Srd, providing visitors easy access to panoramic views from the mountain peak. The riders can view the old town of Dubrovnik, the Adriatic Sea and surrounding islands once the car ascends. Visitors can dine at the restaurant, visit the museum in the old fort, go on buggy safari rides or hike trails. The cable car is good for all visitors and offers a unique way to gain breathtaking perspectives on this beautiful walled city. Taking the Dubrovnik cable car up Mount Srd is an experience not to be missed.
- Game of Thrones Tour. Game of Thrones Tour in Dubrovnik takes visitors to key filming locations from the hit HBO series, including Lovrijenac Fortress (the Red Keep), Pile Gate and the Jesuit Staircase (used in Cersei's Walk of Shame scene). An expert local guide provides the tour about the filming and history of Dubrovnik, drawing connections between the real city and the world of Game of Thrones. There are opportunities to take photos with show props. The 2-3 hour tours involve a moderate amount of walking as the old town is on a steep hill. They are best for older kids and adults who are fans of the show.
- Proporela. Porporela is a pier and breakwater in Dubrovnik's old harbor, originally built to reduce wave intensity and protect anchored boats. Visitors can stroll and swim during summer when locals gather, watch water polo matches, relax on benches listening to waves or experience dramatic winter storms. Porporela does not have an admission fee and is suitable for all ages wanting a refreshing swim or views. It is located on the east side of the old town, past the Peskarija fish market and Sveti Ivan Tower.
- Fort Lovrijenac. Fort Lovrijenac, known as St. Lawrence Fortress, is located outside the western wall of Dubrovnik's old town in Croatia. This triangular fortress offers visitors scenic views over Dubrovnik and the Adriatic Sea from its three terraces. Highlights include exploring the well-preserved fort interior with ancient canons and remnants of various eras, taking photos of panoramas and watching cliff diving competitions. Reaching the fortress involves climbing 200 steps, but the views from the top make it worthwhile for most visitors.
- Try local cuisine. Try the local cuisine of Dubrovnik that features fresh Adriatic seafood like the black risotto made with cuttlefish ink, buzara seafood stew with mussels or shrimp and slow-cooked meat dishes like peka. Fruits, vegetables and olive oils from nearby farms pair beautifully. Sweet local specialties include arancini candied citrus peel, rozata custard with rose liqueur and stonska torta cake made with pasta and chocolate. There are options from cheap casual spots to Michelin-starred fine dining. Visitors can sample dishes throughout pedestrian-only Old Town Dubrovnik, located on Croatia's southern coast. Cooking classes and tours can teach how to make traditional dishes.
1. City Walls
The City Walls refer to the fortified stone walls surrounding the old town of Dubrovnik, Croatia. The walls stretch for 1,940 meters, stand up to 25 meters high and have never been breached by an invading enemy. The wall remains one of Croatia's top attractions. Visitors can walk along the top of the walls for 1.5-2 hours to take in views of the old town, the Adriatic Sea and landmarks like Fort Lovrijenac. There are cafes dotted along the route to stop for refreshments. Guests can enter Fort Lovrijenac, explore the old town or join a guided tour.
The City Walls are located in central Dubrovnik, with the main entrance at Pile Gate. There are two other entrances at Ploče Gate and by the Maritime Museum. Known by several names, including Dubrovnik Ring and Dubrovačke gradske zidine, the walls have special status as one of Europe's largest and best-preserved medieval fortified systems. They are recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. The walk involves climbing many steps, so a moderate fitness level is recommended. Entry tickets to the City Walls start at €14 ($15, £12) per person.
2. Old Town
Old Town is a well-preserved medieval walled city located on the Adriatic coast in southern Croatia. It's known for its terracotta-tiled rooftops, narrow cobblestone streets, historic churches and imposing defensive walls dating back to the 11th century. The top things for visitors to do include walking along the nearly two-kilometer-long (1.2 miles) city walls to admire views of the sea and red-roofed buildings below, wandering through atmospheric alleys and squares like the main promenade of Stradun, visiting cultural attractions like the Rector's Palace museum and Dominican Monastery museum, relaxing at a cliffside café like Buža Bar with scenic vistas, trying traditional Dalmatian cuisine at one of the many restaurants and cafés, shopping for souvenirs from local artisans and more.
Visitors to Dubrovnik's Old Town can walk along the historic defensive walls overlooking the sea, wander through atmospheric narrow lanes and squares, visit cultural sites like museums and historic buildings, relax at cliffside cafes and restaurants with scenic views, shop for local souvenirs and products and more. There are many history and culture-oriented activities to embrace. The Old Town of Dubrovnik is enjoyable for all visitors, including families and kids interested in history and culture. However, the amount of walking involved should be considered. There is an admission fee to walk along the Old Town walls. Other attractions, like museums, have separate admission fees.
3. Visit Lokrum Island
Lokrum Island is a small, uninhabited island located just 600 meters off the coast of Dubrovnik, Croatia. It is a protected nature reserve known for its lush forests, exotic botanical gardens, rocky beaches and
crystalline waters. Key things to do on Lokrum Island include visiting the 11th-century Benedictine monastery ruins, exploring the lush botanical gardens, hiking up to Fort Royal for panoramic views, swimming and sunbathing at the main Lokrum beach, floating in the “Dead Sea” saltwater lake, seeing where Game of Thrones was filmed and spotting the wild peacocks that roam freely around the island. Ferries to Lokrum run regularly from Dubrovnik's Old Port from April to November. The roundtrip fare costs €18 ($20, £15) and includes entrance to the nature reserve. Lokrum makes for a relaxing and scenic day trip away from the bustle of Dubrovnik's Old Town.
4. Kayaking Tour (both regular and sea kayaking)
Kayaking is one of the most popular activities for visitors to Dubrovnik, thanks to the strikingly beautiful Dalmatian coastline surrounding the city. Numerous companies offer guided kayaking tours ranging from 2-3 hours up to full-day trips. Tours typically depart from Pile Bay near the Pile Gate entrance to Dubrovnik's historic walled Old Town. Guides provide basic kayaking instruction, then lead groups around Lokrum Island and along the city walls, stopping to explore scenic caves, secluded beaches and coastal cliffs only accessible from the water.
Tours provide all necessary gear, including waterproof storage bags. Most trips are suitable for ages four and above as long as participants are reasonably fit. Tours make stops halfway through at places like Betina Cave Beach for swimming, snorkeling, cliff jumping or just relaxing in the sun. Some tours end by watching the sunset over the Adriatic Sea while sipping local wine. Solo travelers can join group tours and will be paired with other single participants. Kayaking allows visitors of all experience levels to take in Dubrovnik's beauty up close from a fun and adventurous perspective out on the water. Tours provide all necessary gear, accommodate ages four and up, require reasonable fitness and have specific prices per person.
5. The Cable Car Ride
The cable car ride offers visitors a unique way to take in views of a city or natural landscape. Cable cars are suspended cabins that move along cables between stations, allowing riders to float high above the ground. As the cabin ascends, passengers get an ever-expanding vista of the surroundings below. Cable cars provide easy access to high vantage points that would otherwise require lengthy hikes or dangerous driving up steep roads. Riding in a cable car evokes a sense of adventure yet requires little physical exertion on the part of riders. Popular cable car routes showcase famous landmarks and panoramic scenery. The enclosed space of the cabin protects passengers from wind and inclement weather. Cable car stations often have restaurants, shops and other amenities. Taking a cable car ride is an efficient, relaxing and memorable way to gain new perspectives on a destination.
The cable car is located in Dubrovnik, Croatia. It goes from the city up to the top of Mount Srd. The cable car provides panoramic views over Dubrovnik and the surrounding islands and sea. It is an easy way to access the top of Mount Srd without having to hike. Visitors can take in the views, have a meal or drink at the restaurant, visit the museum in the old fort, go on a buggy safari tour or hike on the trails. The cable car is good for all visitors, including families and children.
6. Game of Thrones Tour
Game of Thrones Tour in Dubrovnik takes visitors to the key filming locations used in the hit HBO TV series. You can get the chance to see sites like Lovrijenac Fortress (the Red Keep), Pile Gate (where the riot in King's Landing took place), the Jesuit Staircase (used in Cersei's Walk of Shame scene) and other spots around Dubrovnik's old town that served as the backdrop for the capital of the Seven Kingdoms, King's Landing. An expert local guide will provide commentary about the filming and the history of Dubrovnik itself, making connections between the real city and the world of Game of Thrones. There are opportunities to take photos with props from the show at sites like a replica of the Iron Throne. Most tours run 2-3 hours as the old town is located on a steep hill. The tours are best for older kids and adults who are fans of the show.
Porporela is a pier and breakwater in Dubrovnik's old harbor. It was originally constructed in the 19th century to protect harbor boats from crashing waves and erosion. Porporela serves as a popular spot for both locals and tourists alike to enjoy refreshing swims, sunbathing and views of the sea and the iconic old city walls. Visitors can stroll along the pier and enjoy views of Lokrum Island, the old town walls and passing ships. Go for a swim during the summer months when locals gather to swim, sunbathe and jump from the rocks and walls. Watch water polo matches, which are often held here, relax on the benches and listen to the sound of waves against the walls. Porporela does not have an admission fee. It is perfect for people of all ages who want a refreshing swim and good views. The pier is located on the eastern side of Dubrovnik's old town, past the Peskarija fish market and Sveti Ivan Tower. It is easily accessible on foot while exploring the historic sights of the old city.
8. Fort Lovrijenac
Fort Lovrijenac, known as St. Lawrence Fortress, is located outside the western wall of Dubrovnik's old town in Croatia, perched 37 meters above sea level on a rocky cliff. This imposing triangular fortress offers visitors an incredibly scenic view over Dubrovnik and the Adriatic Sea from its three terraces. A top highlight is exploring the well-preserved fort interior, including seeing ancient canons, an inner courtyard and
remnants of various eras such as Romanesque, Gothic and Renaissance architecture. The fort frequently hosts theatrical plays and performances, most notably Shakespeare's “Hamlet” during Dubrovnik's annual Summer Festival. Game of Thrones fans may recognize it as the Red Keep in King's Landing. Other activities include learning about the history of the fort through informational panels, taking plenty of photos of unobstructed panoramas and watching daring cliff divers plunge into the sea below during summertime competitions. Reaching the fortress involves climbing 200 steps, but the rewarding scenery at the top makes it worthwhile for most visitors.
9. Try Local Cuisine
Try the local cuisine of Dubrovnik, which includes the black risotto, made with cuttlefish ink and often accompanied by mussels, clams and other shellfish. Another popular dish is buzara, a seafood stew typically made with mussels or shrimp, along with garlic, parsley, white wine and breadcrumbs. Meat dishes like peka, slow-cooked meats and vegetables baked under a bell-like lid and pasticada, a sweet and sour beef stew, have a long history here. Vegetables like Swiss chard and fruits like oranges, figs and pomegranates are abundant. Olive oil and local wines like Malvazija pair beautifully with dishes. Those with a sweet tooth can try favorites like arancini (candied orange or lemon peel), rozata (a custard with rose liqueur) and stonska torta (an unusual cake made with pasta and chocolate). Dubrovnik's restaurants range from cheap casual spots to Michelin-starred fine dining, but the focus is usually on fresh, high-quality local ingredients.
The main area to experience Dubrovnik's cuisine is in Old Town Dubrovnik, located in the city of Dubrovnik on the southern Adriatic coast of Croatia. Markets provide seasonal fruits, vegetables, olive oils and
wines that chefs incorporate. Dishes reflect various cultural influences from Mediterranean, Italian and Balkan cuisines. Visitors can sample dishes at many restaurants, cafes and wine bars throughout Old Town. They can browse markets selling local produce and buy ingredients to cook themselves. There are cooking classes to learn how to make traditional dishes.
10. Wine Tasting Tour
A wine-tasting tour is an activity where visitors go to local wineries or wine bars to sample and learn about different types of wine. This typically involves visiting multiple wineries in a region known for wine production, such as Napa Valley, Tuscany or the wine regions near Dubrovnik, Croatia. At each winery, guests will taste a flight of wines, usually 5-6 different wines, while learning about the winemaking process and characteristics of each varietal from knowledgeable staff. The experience allows wine lovers to discover new wines they enjoy while seeing beautiful vineyards and cellars.
Tours in the Dubrovnik area often visit wineries on the nearby Pelješac Peninsula, known for full-bodied reds or small producers located on islands like Korčula. Guests may taste indigenous Croatian grape varietals they won't find anywhere else. Tours stop at multiple wineries for tastings and vineyard visits and some incorporate walking tours, visits to historic towns or even adventures like kayaking. They run from half-day to full-day trips and provide transportation to the wineries. The tours provide a fun way to combine wine tasting with sightseeing in the beautiful Dalmatian Coast region.
11. Museum Hopping
Museum hopping is a popular activity for visitors to Dubrovnik, Croatia. The city has several fascinating museums and galleries that provide insight into Dubrovnik's rich history, culture and art. Top museums include the Cultural History Museum housed in the 15th century Rector's Palace, showcasing the lavish lifestyle of past rulers; the Maritime Museum in St. John's Fortress, tracing Dubrovnik's naval history; the Museum of Modern Art featuring Croatian artists; and the moving War Photo Limited gallery displaying images from conflict zones worldwide. Many museums are concentrated in the Old Town area within the famous city walls. Visitors can purchase a Dubrovnik Card, allowing entry to 6 museums at a discounted rate, making museum hopping easy and affordable. Exploring 2 to 3 museums in a day is ideal for most visitors. Key exhibits range from Renaissance paintings and nautical artifacts to contemporary installations and thought-provoking war reportage. Museum hopping lets visitors discover different facets of Dubrovnik while escaping the summer heat indoors.
Visitors get an insightful overview of Dubrovnik's culture and history by visiting several museums. Visitors can view exhibits at the museums, often with audio guides available. Some museums, like War Photo Limited, have special temporary exhibits. The Rector's Palace hosts classical music events in summer. Museum hopping appeals to adults interested in culture, history and art. Some museums, like the Natural History Museum, have interactive exhibits suitable for families.
12. Beach hopping
Beach hopping is a popular activity in Dubrovnik with its location on Croatia's Dalmatian Coast overlooking the dazzling Adriatic Sea. Famous beaches in Dubrovnik include Banje Beach, located right by the old city walls with lounge chairs, water sports rentals and the popular East West Beach Club restaurant and nightclub. Sveti Jakov Beach is a more local spot surrounded by pine trees and fine pebbles, while Copacabana Beach, farther down the coast, has good facilities like showers and rows of umbrellas, along with a lively beach bar. Secluded Betina Beach can only be accessed from the sea, leading to its pristine, shallow waters surrounded by caves perfect for swimming. Travelers can take a short ferry to beach hop around Lokrum Island's main rocky beach, small pebble coves and unique nudist beach. Beach hopping allows exploring Dubrovnik's mix of pebble beaches tucked below cliffs to resort-style sandy beaches with beach clubs, all showcasing gorgeous turquoise waters and the city's medieval walls looming in the distance.
Visitors can swim, sunbathe, rent water sports equipment like jet skis and kayaks, relax at beachfront cafés and bars, enjoy seafood lunches and go on short boat trips to small coves and islands with hidden beaches. There are lively party beaches as well as more serene getaways.
Beach hopping appeals to all types of travelers, including families, couples, friend groups and solo travelers. The beaches offer options for those seeking relaxation, water sports, nightlife atmospheres, sightseeing and more. There are no admission costs for beaches, but there may be rental fees for equipment, chairs, etc., at some resort or club-style beaches.
13. Franciscan Church and Monastery
Franciscan Church and Monastery is a large complex in Old Town Dubrovnik consisting of a church, monastery, museum, library and pharmacy. Visitors can explore the beautiful mid-14th century Romanesque cloister with its lush courtyard garden and unique sculpted columns. Each capital topping the slim paired columns features a different figure like an animal, human head or floral design. Guests can tour the monastery's museum to see its collection of liturgical artifacts like 15th-century silver crosses, 18th-century paintings and gold jewelry. Another highlight is visiting the ancient pharmacy that has been operating since 1317, making it one of the oldest in the world. You can still have prescriptions filled using traditional herbs and recipes. The library contains over 20,000 books, 1200 manuscripts and has exhibits on display.
Visitors can tour the monastery and museum, explore the cloister and garden, have prescriptions filled at the historic pharmacy and view rare texts in the library. It attracts history and architecture enthusiasts. The monastery is located right off Placa Street near Pile Gate in central Old Town. It is easily accessible on foot once in the pedestrian zone.
The Stradun is the main street that runs through the old town of Dubrovnik, Croatia. It is located in the walled city and is often called Dubrovnik's “main street”. The Stradun is significant because it is the historic focal point of the city. It was built in the 14th century and served as the main street through the city center. It was paved with limestone in 1468. It is a popular pedestrian zone lined with shops, restaurants, churches and palaces.
Visitors to the Stradun can go shopping, dine at restaurants and cafes, visit historic landmarks like the 15th-century Onofrio's Fountain, see the Clock Tower and walk the length of the street to take in the architecture and activity. It's also a common gathering place for events and entertainment. The Stradun appeals to all visitors to Dubrovnik, including families, couples, tourists and locals. Walking the historic street and taking in the sights of the old town is an ideal activity for all. Walking the Stradun itself is free. There are no admission tickets required. Visitors only need to pay for any shopping, dining or entrance fees to landmarks along the way.
15. Day Trip to Elaphiti Islands
Day Trip Elaphiti Islands on the coast of Dubrovnik in southern Croatia. The islands sit in the beautiful blue Adriatic Sea with views back towards the old medieval city of Dubrovnik. A popular day trip from Dubrovnik is to take a boat ride out to explore these picturesque islands. There are 13 islands in the Elaphiti archipelago, but tours typically visit the three most popular inhabited ones, namely Koločep, Lopud and Šipan.
The journey starts by boarding a traditional wooden boat, either from Dubrovnik's Old Town harbor or the main port at Gruž. It is a relaxing 45-minute cruise along the coastline to reach the first island stop. Highlights include swimming and snorkeling through caves like the “Blue Cave”, wandering around the quiet village and hiking along scenic trails between the two settlements. The second stop is famous for having sandy Šunj Beach, special for this typically rocky coastline. Visitors can explore Lopud's botanical gardens, churches and medieval architecture. The last stop is Šipan, the largest island covered in lush pine forests. Visitors can check out Šipan's various churches and 15th-16th century aristocratic architecture or simply relax at the harbor.
16. Minčeta Tower
Minčeta Tower is located in the city of Dubrovnik, Croatia, along the Northwestern wall of Dubrovnik's famous medieval city walls. The tower is sometimes referred to by its alternative Croatian name, “Tvrđava Minčeta”. The round fortress tower was originally built in 1319 as a quadrilateral fort but was later expanded to its current circular design in 1464. Today, the Minčeta Tower is one of the iconic symbols of the city of Dubrovnik.
The main attraction of the tower is climbing to the very top terrace for stunning panoramic views overlooking the orange rooftops of Old Town Dubrovnik, the sparkling blue Adriatic sea and the surrounding landscapes. There is no admission fee to enter the tower specifically, but you need to buy a ticket to walk along the City Walls, which grants you access. The tower is perfect for visitors of all ages to climb up steep ancient staircases safely.
17. War Photo Limited in Dubrovnik
War Photo Limited is a compelling exhibition space in Dubrovnik, Croatia dedicated to showcasing impactful war photojournalism. Founded by acclaimed New Zealand photojournalist Wade Goddard, the museum is spread over two floors and 350 square meters inside Dubrovnik's historic old city.
The museum features temporary exhibitions and a permanent exhibition focused on the wars in former Yugoslavia. Striking works by renowned war photographers from around the world are displayed in a raw, unfiltered way. The exhibitions juxtapose the violent and absurd realities of modern warfare across various global conflicts. The museum offers an unflinching look at the human suffering and devastation of war. Reviews describe the experience as uniquely emotional and powerful for understanding war's harsh realities. War Photo Limited has received outstanding reviews and awards, including designation as an Experts' Choice attraction by Concierge. It is open daily from 10 am to 5 pm during spring and fall, with extended hours in summer. Entrance fees are 10€ for adults, with discounts for students and groups. War Photo Limited gives visitors a compelling opportunity to reflect on war's impacts through impactful photojournalism. The museum's exhibitions provide an unvarnished portrayal of the effects of armed conflict on humanity.
What are the best museums to visit in Dubrovnik?
Listed below are the best museums to visit in Dubrovnik.
- The City Walls. The City Walls of Dubrovnik encompass the entire old town and run uninterrupted for nearly 2 kilometers. The walls date back to the 8th century, but most of the existing ones were constructed between the 12th and 17th centuries. The City Walls are not a traditional museum but rather an outdoor living museum that allows visitors to immerse themselves in history and architecture while taking in views of Dubrovnik. The City Walls are well-preserved medieval walls that have never been conquered. Visitors can walk along the entirety of the walls, with five fortresses, stopping to take photos of views, inspect historical features like cannons and visit small museums or cafes along the route. The full walk takes 1.5-2 hours. Entry tickets to the City Walls start at €14 ($15, £12) per person.
- War Photo Limited. War Photo Limited showcases stirring images from worldwide conflicts, using renowned photojournalists' works to underscore war’s injustice to innocents and combatants. Its core permanent exhibition features the 1990s Yugoslav Wars surrounding Yugoslavia’s breakup but ranges to contemporary hotspots like Afghanistan, Syria and Myanmar. Occurring poignantly in still-recovering Dubrovnik, the museum ultimately aims to increase global understanding of war’s demoralization and senselessness through empathy-evoking photographs.
- Rector’s Palace. Rector’s Palace's Cultural History Museum provides local insights spanning over 500 years. Construction began when Dubrovnik gained independence in the 13th century, with the current lavish building integrating Gothic, Baroque and Renaissance finishes. Walking through ornately appointed diplomatic quarters and council rooms hints at the Rector’s intricate regional trade and seafaring roles. The palace’s size and fortification hint at instability during the city-state’s complex governing era.
- Museum of Modern Art. Museum of Modern Art Dubrovnik predominately on pivotal local artists’ late 19th century onward paintings and sculptures. The striking Renaissance-inspired building itself garners acclaim. Visitors can wander the sunlit floors, revealing interesting artistic movements like the Croatian “Colorists.”
What are the best things to do in Dubrovnik with kids?
Listed below are the best things to do in Dubrovnik with kids.
- Walk the Dubrovnik City Walls. Walk the Dubrovnik City Walls, which date back to the 13th century and take 1.5 hours to walk. Kids will enjoy exploring the old fortifications that encircle the city. The views of the red rooftops and coastline are stunning. The entrance fee is included with the Dubrovnik Pass.
- Visit Lokrum Island. Visit Lokrum Island, which is filled with nature trails, beaches and exotic plants and wildlife. Kids can see peacocks roaming freely and swim at the “Dead Sea” saltwater lake. There is an old monastery and the ruins of Fort Royal to explore. Lokrum makes for a perfect day trip escape from the summer city heat. There is a small entrance fee to enter the nature reserve area.
- Ride the Cable Car to Mount Srd. Ride the cable car to Mount Srd, which offers beautiful panoramic views over Dubrovnik on the 4-minute ride up Mount Srd. For older kids and teens, these rides allow further exploration of the terrain and fortresses.
- Play at Pile Park Playground. Play at Pile Park Playground, The Old Town's only playground that has swings, slides and play structures for younger kids to enjoy. It is located right by Pile Gate and there is no admission fee. It is best for morning and evening visits during Dubrovnik's hot summer days.
What are the best activities for a business traveler in Dubrovnik?
Listed below are the best activities for a business traveler in Dubrovnik.
- Walking the old city walls. Walking the old city walls and taking a break from business meetings to explore the scenic old town walls and fortresses is a relaxing way to take in the incredible views of the sea and get some exercise. The towering ramparts encircle the whole of the old town and offer stunning vistas over terracotta rooftops, the sparkling Adriatic and distant islands. A walk here makes an enjoyable diversion from a busy work schedule.
- Attend a cooking class. Attending a cooking class is a fun team bonding activity during downtime from business meetings, where you can get a taste of Croatian culture by learning to make traditional dishes like black risotto, fish stew or even wine. It's a hands-on way to gain insight into local food, customs and hospitality.
- Go sea kayaking. Go sea kayaking along the rugged coastline offers a different perspective on Dubrovnik's old town between business meetings and serves as an adventurous yet accessible activity for all abilities. Glide right up to the medieval ramparts and soak in views of fortresses and stone towers from the water for a uniquely memorable experience.
- Visit a museum. Visit a museum and business travelers can take advantage of the opportunity for an educational activity to enjoy during free time outside of meetings, perhaps learning more about Dubrovnik's rich seafaring past or seeing works by great Croatian artists. An injection of arts and culture makes for an edifying break from commerce.
Where is Dubrovnik?
Dubrovnik is located in southern Croatia along the stunning Dalmatian Coast overlooking the waters of the Adriatic Sea, with coordinates at 42°38′N 18°06′E. This medieval walled city is located 218 kilometers (135 miles) South of Zagreb, Croatia's inland capital. Dubrovnik sits at Croatia's most southern point, right on the border with Montenegro to its southeast. Dubrovnik's closest major city neighbor is Split, the second largest city in Croatia, located 242 kilometers (150 miles) Northwest. The drive between Split and Dubrovnik takes 4 hours. Dubrovnik's location along Croatia's southern Adriatic Sea coastline allows it to have a mild Mediterranean climate, making it an appealing seaside resort city. Its location establishes Dubrovnik in close proximity to other destinations in the region.
What is the history of Dubrovnik?
Dubrovnik was founded in the 7th century by refugees fleeing the destruction of the nearby town of Epidaurum. The initial settlement was on a small island called Laus and was protected by defensive walls. Dubrovnik, then known as Ragusa, grew into an important trading center and seaport and became a powerful merchant republic rivaling Venice. Ragus or Dubrovnik operated as a prosperous and independent city-state. It was a shipping, commerce and culture center on the Adriatic coast. A massive earthquake destroyed much of the city in 1667, including its Renaissance-era palaces and architecture. It was rebuilt in the Baroque style.
Ragusa's independence was ended by Napoleon in 1808 after his troops entered and occupied the city. It was then ruled by the Austrian Empire from 1815-1918. Dubrovnik became part of the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes, which later became Yugoslavia. It remained part of Yugoslavia until Croatia declared independence in 1991. Dubrovnik was besieged by Yugoslav forces for seven months and suffered extensive damage from artillery attacks. The city was rebuilt after the war.
What language is spoken in Dubrovnik?
Croatian is the official language of Croatia and the main language spoken in Dubrovnik (referred to locally as “naški” or the Dubrovnik dialect). English is widely spoken in Dubrovnik due to its popularity as a tourist destination. It is estimated that around 60% of residents speak English.
There are other languages like Italian, German and French, which are spoken by some portion of the population in Dubrovnik but not as widely as Croatian and English. The local Dubrovnik dialect contains influences from Italian and other languages due to the city's history of interactions with various cultures and empires. But it remains mutually intelligible with standard Croatian. Most young people and those working in the tourism industry in Dubrovnik can speak English well, allowing English-speaking tourists to get around and communicate easily.
What time zone is Dubrovnik in?
Dubrovnik is located in the Central European Time (CET) zone, with a standard time defined as UTC+1. This means it is 1 hour ahead of Coordinated Universal Time. The Internet Assigned Numbers Authority identifier for Dubrovnik's time zone is “Europe/Zagreb”. Dubrovnik observes Daylight Saving Time (DST) during the summer months. On the last Sunday of March, clocks are moved forward by 1 hour to UTC+2, switching the time zone to Central European Summer Time (CEST).
How many people live in Dubrovnik?
Dubrovnik, located in southern Croatia, has a total population of 28,434 as of 2023. There are 13,499 men, comprising 48% of the population and 14,435 women, comprising the remaining 52%. Dubrovnik has 1,190 babies under four years old, including 577 girls and 611 boys. There are 1,303 young children between 5 and 9 years old, with 671 boys and 632 girls. The city has 1,414 pre-teens aged 10-14, made up of 729 boys and 684 girls. Dubrovnik has 1,440 teenagers between 14 and 19 years old, including 739 male and 701 female teens. Dubrovnik only has one resident who is over 100 years old, a centenarian woman.
What are the most interesting facts about Dubrovnik?
Listed below are the most interesting facts about Dubrovnik, Croatia.
- Currency. The currency adopted in Croatia has been in Euro since January 01, 2023, replacing the Croatian kuna (HRK) as its official currency. 1 Euro is equivalent to about 7.5 kuna. Many shops, hotels and restaurants in tourist areas accept euros and you can get a better exchange rate by paying in kuna.
- Time Zone. The time zone of Dubrovnik is in the Central European Time Zone, which is UTC+1. It is 6 hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time (EST) in the US.
- Language. The official language is Croatian. English is widely spoken in tourist areas. German and Italian are also relatively common. Learning a few basic phrases in Croatian is appreciated by locals.
- Power Plugs. The power plugs of Dubrovnik use a standard electrical voltage of 220-240V. Power outlets accept types C and F plugs with two round prongs. Travelers from North America will need an adapter and potentially a voltage converter.
How many days are needed to see Dubrovnik?
It is recommended to stay for 2 to 5 days, which is enough time to see the highlights of Dubrovnik. This number of days allows immersion into Dubrovnik and surrounding areas, including multiple day trips and time to sample local cuisine and culture. It enables an in-depth experience without a rush and gives maximum flexibility to experience sites in and around Dubrovnik fully.
Is Dubrovnik worth visiting?
Yes, Dubrovnik is worth visiting, offering visitors an authentic and affordable European city break. The historic old town has a well-preserved Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque architecture. You can see the city's medieval walls offer breathtaking views of red-tiled rooftops, the sparkling Adriatic Sea and nearby islands. There is interesting history to uncover and delicious local cuisine to sample. Dubrovnik should be on your itinerary when visiting Croatia.
Is Dubrovnik expensive to visit?
Yes, Dubrovnik is considered to be a fairly expensive travel destination, especially compared to other cities in Croatia or the Balkan region. Prices for accommodation, food, transportation and activities tend to be higher than in many other cities. Accommodation prices are high, especially in the old town and during peak tourism season. Hotel prices start at €91 ($100, £79) per night. Private apartments and hostels are cheaper options. Food prices in restaurants are quite high, with a typical meal costing €32 ($35, £27) per person. More budget-friendly options exist for eating local street food, picnics or cooking your own meals. The Dubrovnik Card can help save on costs for top sights. Transportation like buses and taxis tend to cost more than in other Croatian destinations. Rental cars are moderately priced. Several sources noted that Dubrovnik's popularity from Game of Thrones tourism, cruise ships and rising tourism in general have driven prices up very high in recent years. Visiting Dubrovnik needs proper planning on accommodation and food. Budget-conscious travelers can still enjoy the city without breaking the bank. The expenses seem worth it to many visitors who want to see Dubrovnik's beautiful sites.
Is Dubrovnik safe to visit?
Yes, Dubrovnik is very safe to visit. It is one of Croatia's most popular tourist destinations. The city has low crime rates and is considered safe for travelers. Violent crime is rare and petty crime aimed at tourists, like pickpocketing, does occur but is relatively uncommon. Dubrovnik's city center and attractions are well-lit and have a visible police presence. Basic precautions like being aware of your surroundings, not leaving belongings unattended and avoiding poorly lit areas at night will ensure your visit to picturesque Dubrovnik is trouble-free. The welcoming locals add to this beautiful coastal city's pleasant, safe atmosphere.
Is Dubrovnik easy to visit with kids?
Yes, Dubrovnik is easy to visit with kids. Dubrovnik can be a great destination for families, though it may require some advanced planning. The town offers lots for kids to explore, like climbing the historic city walls, wandering the narrow alleys and spotting the sea from overlook points along the way. There is a cable car up to a mountaintop overlooking the area that kids tend to enjoy. Nearby Lokrum Island makes an easy, kid-friendly day trip, with wildlife spotting opportunities, a sea cave to find and a “Dead Sea” saltwater lake for swimming. Some travel with older kids use Dubrovnik as a base for day trips to destinations like Mostar or Kotor for added family adventure.
What is Dubrovnik famous for?
Firstly, Dubrovnik is famous for its medieval old town, which is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Secondly, Dubrovnik became very well-known recently for serving as a filming location for the popular TV show Game of Thrones, where parts of the old town stood in for the fantasy city of King's Landing. Thirdly, Dubrovnik has been called the “Pearl of the Adriatic” and is renowned for its beautiful location on the sparkling blue Adriatic Sea, with scenic coastal views, beaches and nearby islands. It has long been a major tourist destination. Fourthly, Dubrovnik has a rich cultural and architectural heritage seen in Gothic, Renaissance and Baroque buildings and monuments like churches, palaces, monasteries and fountains. Lastly, Dubrovnik has a vibrant culinary scene featuring Mediterranean cuisine with fresh seafood, local wines and traditional dishes.
Who are the most important people born in Dubrovnik?
Listed below are the most important people born in Dubrovnik.
- Marin Držić (1508-1567). Marin Držić was a Croatian writer and playwright who lived in the 16th century. He was born in Dubrovnik in 1508 and died there in 1567. Držić is considered one of the fathers of Croatian literature and a key figure in the European Renaissance comedy. He wrote acclaimed comedies and pastorals that celebrate themes like love, liberty and sincerity while mocking greed and tyranny. His plays are still performed in Dubrovnik and throughout Croatia today.
- Ruđer Bošković (1711-1787). Ruđer Bošković was a scientist and polymath born in Dubrovnik in 1711 and died in Milan in 1787. He made important contributions in fields like physics, astronomy, mathematics, philosophy and more. Bošković developed groundbreaking theories on the structure of matter and the fundamental forces of nature. He designed scientific instruments and participated in landmark surveys to measure the shape of the earth. Bošković was a member of scientific institutions across Europe and carried out diplomatic work on behalf of the Dubrovnik Republic.
- Ivan Gundulić (1589-1638). Ivan Gundulić was a Baroque poet and playwright born to a noble family in Dubrovnik in 1589. He died in his home city in 1638. Gundulić is renowned for lyrical poetry and plays fusing themes from Balkan folk epics and Western literary influences. His acclaimed epic poem “Osman” celebrated the Polish-Ottoman wars, while the pastoral play “Dubravka” examined the borders between reality and poetic vision. Gundulić's innovative works made him a towering figure in Croatian literature.
- Miho Pracat (1522-1588). Miho Pracat was a wealthy shipowner born in the village of Lopud near Dubrovnik in 1522 and died in Dubrovnik in 1588. He donated his fortune to Dubrovnik to fund defenses, infrastructure projects and arts/culture. Projects he financed include harbor fortifications, an aqueduct that brought fresh water from a spring 12km away and Dubrovnik's first orphanage. The sculpture of Pracat near Orlando's Column on Dubrovnik's main street honors him as the only commoner given a statue in the medieval Dubrovnik Republic.
- Vlaho Bukovac (1855–1922). Vlaho Bukovac was a prominent Croatian painter born in the town of Cavtat near Dubrovnik in 1855. He died in Zagreb in 1922. Bukovac was one of the leading Croatian artists of his era, renowned for his vivid use of color and masterful portraits. He studied in Vienna, Prague and Paris, bringing new painting styles and techniques to Croatian art. Bukovac created religious paintings for churches across Croatia and portraits of numerous well-known figures.
What to eat in Dubrovnik?
Listed below are what you can eat in Dubrovnik.
- Oysters from Ston. Oysters from Ston is popular in the country and is farmed in the waters of Mali. Ston Bay is famous for its unique, briny flavor and meaty texture. These succulent oysters are best sampled raw on the half shell, with just a squeeze of lemon.
- Black Cuttlefish Risotto. Black Cuttlefish Risotto is tinted by the ink of cuttlefish and flavored by its tender meat and seafood stock. It is a specialty food in the city of Dubrovnik and the coastal region, made even more delicious by the incredible local white wine paired with it and one of the best local food to eat in Croatia.
- Peka. Peka refers to a traditional Dubrovnik cooking technique where meats and vegetables are slow-cooked under a baking bell with hot coals. Tender, succulent meats like veal or octopus baked peka style are considered a specialty food in the city.
- Rožata. Rožata is a rich, custard-like dessert that has roots dating back to medieval Dubrovnik and is one of the most popular foods in the country due to its floral perfume smell.
- Kumquat Liqueur. Kumquat Liqueur is made from an abundance of sweet local kumquats, this after-dinner drink features the tiny orange citrus fruits soaked in brandy. It is a specialty in the city of Dubrovnik that serves as a tart, refreshing digestif.
What are the best places to eat in Dubrovnik?
Listed below are the best places to eat in Dubrovnik.
- Nautika. Nautika is renowned for its sophisticated seafood dishes and extensive wine list, served with white tablecloth service on a romantic terrace overlooking the city walls and Old Port. Head chef Mario Bunda puts a creative twist on local ingredients with standout dishes like Adriatic tuna tartare, lobster medallions and black cuttlefish risotto. Nautika enjoys a long-held reputation as the finest dining experience in Dubrovnik and one of the restaurants to eat in Dubrovnik.
- Proto. Proto is the oldest and one of the most respected restaurants in the city of Dubrovnik, focusing on time-honored regional recipes. It occupies a vaulted stone space on an Old Town side street serving dishes like salt-baked whole fish, lobster “Proto” style with bisque sauce and shrimp and octopus black risotto. 360°. 360° is a sleek fine dining restaurant located at the Old Town's main promenade. It is one of the top restaurants to eat in the city of Dubrovnik. The restaurant's contemporary menu from chef Marijo Curić focuses on seasonal local ingredients, beautifully presented in dishes like just-seared tuna and squid ink black risotto. Romantic outdoor tables placed along the historic city walls make 360° one of Dubrovnik's most striking settings for culinary indulgence.
What are the best areas to stay in Dubrovnik?
Listed below are the best places to stay in Dubrovnik.
- Dubrovnik Old Town. Dubrovnik Old Town is located in the center of the city, enclosed by ancient walls and filled with narrow streets, historic buildings, restaurants and
shops. Staying here gives you easy access to major attractions like the city walls, Stradun (main street) and cultural sites. The town is generally safe for solo travelers and is a peaceful neighborhood.
- Lapad. Lapad is known for its beautiful beaches and promenade. Lapad is a quieter area compared to the Old Town. It offers a range of accommodations, restaurants and parks, making it ideal for a more relaxed stay while still being close to the city center. Lapad is generally safe with a more relaxed atmosphere, suitable for solo travelers looking for a peaceful stay.
- Pile. Pile is located at the western entrance to the Old Town, Pile is a convenient location with easy access to landmarks like Lovrijenac Fortress and the starting point for walking the city walls. It is close to restaurants and has a bus stop for exploring further. It is relatively safe for solo travelers and those with families due to its proximity to the Old Town and well-traveled routes.
- Ploče. Ploče offers views of the Old Town and Lokrum Island. It's a bit quieter than the Old Town but still within walking distance. Ploče is known for luxury accommodations and beautiful vistas. It is a safe neighborhood to stay in for solo travelers and families.
- Gruž. Gruž is a residential area and the city's main port and transportation hub. It is where ferry docks are and offers a local market, making it a practical choice for those preferring a quieter stay away from the tourist crowds. It is a safe neighborhood due to its residential nature, suitable for those seeking a quieter environment and willing to explore the city through its transportation hub.
What are the best accommodations to stay in Dubrovnik?
Listed below are the best accommodations to stay in Dubrovnik.
- Club Dubrovnik Sunny Hotel by Valamar. Club Dubrovnik Sunny Hotel by Valamar is a family-friendly hotel close to Dubrovnik designed for a fun-filled holiday. It features exciting amenities such as pools and recreational activities suitable for families. It is located close to beaches and offers a relaxed atmosphere where families can unwind while being conveniently near the city. The peaceful seaside location makes it perfect for relaxation and is one of the best hotels in Dubrovnik.
- MirÓ Studio Apartments. MirÓ Studio Apartments, located near the Old Town, provide a homely vibe. It is ideal for self-sufficient travelers, as it offers the convenience of cooking facilities for those who prefer to prepare their meals. They afford guests the feeling of being residents while being close to Dubrovnik's main attractions. Its central location is ideal for sightseeing and belongs to the list of hotels in Dubrovnik that offer good accommodation.
- Hotel Stari Grad. Hotel Stari Grad is located in the center of the Old Town. Its intimate setting appeals to guests who desire to immerse themselves in the city's rich history. It is an ideal choice for those wanting an authentic experience while having easy access to attractions. It is one of the recommended hotels to stay in Dubrovnik.
How to get to Dubrovnik (DBV) Airport?
There are a few ways to get to Dubrovnik (DBV) Airport. These are by airport shuttle services, taxi or rideshare, bus and private transfers. Firstly, by airport shuttle services, some hotels in Dubrovnik offer shuttle services to the airport for their guests. You can check with your accommodation provider to see if they provide this service and if it needs to be booked in advance. Secondly, these services are readily available throughout Dubrovnik by taxi or rideshare. You can easily flag one down or find them at taxi stands in the city. They provide a direct and convenient way to reach the airport. Thirdly, a bus service operated by Libertas connects the city center to Dubrovnik Airport. Bus routes 11 and 27 run between the airport and the main bus station in Gruž. You can catch these buses at various stops along the route. Timetables are usually available at bus stops or can be checked online. Lastly, by private transfers, these services, including shuttle vans and cars, can be booked in advance to take you directly from your location in Dubrovnik to the airport. Several companies offer this service, allowing you to schedule a convenient pick-up time and location.
How to get from Dubrovnik to Zagreb?
Dubrovnik to Zagreb is 606 kilometers (373 miles) via E65 and E71. Getting to Zagreb from Dubrovnik is possible in a few ways. These are by plane, train and bus. Firstly, Croatia Airlines operates daily by plane, with direct flights taking 1 hour. Plane tickets are more expensive but can be found discounted. Secondly, by train, the closest train station to Dubrovnik is Ploče, which is 2 hours away. To travel by train requires first taking a bus from Dubrovnik to Split and then boarding a train from Split to Zagreb, which takes an additional 6-7 hours. Lastly, by bus, buses depart from Dubrovnik bus station and arrive at Zagreb bus station. The bus journey takes 10-12 hours.
Where to go shopping in Dubrovnik?
There are several great places to go shopping in Dubrovnik. These are Stradun Street, Gundulićeva Poljana Market, specialty stores and boutiques and local arts and craft stores. Firstly, Stradun Street is the main pedestrian street in the Old Town that has shops, cafes and souvenir stores. This is where you can find many high-end and touristy-worthy places for shopping. Secondly, Gundulićeva Poljana Market in the center of the Old Town sells fresh produce, local foods like olive oil and wine, souvenirs and crafts. Thirdly, specialty stores and boutiques like Dubrovačka Kuća for handicrafts, Uje for olive oil products, Clara Stones for jewelry and Croatia for high-end ties and scarves. Lastly, local arts and crafts stores are smaller stores selling things like paintings, ceramics and embroidered goods made locally in Dubrovnik.
What festivals or events are taking place in Dubrovnik?
Listed below are the festivals or events that are taking place in Dubrovnik.
- Dubrovnik Summer Festival. Dubrovnik Summer Festival is an annual cultural event held since 1950, from July 10th to August 25th. Over 70 theatres, music, dance, folklore and other performances and events are held at over 20 open-air and indoor venues in the Old Town. It attracts some of Croatia's top artists as well as renowned international performers. This festival in Dubrovnik showcases the best of music, drama and arts, aiming to promote Dubrovnik's cultural heritage and artistic traditions.
- Good Food Festival. Good Food Festival is a culinary festival organized by the Dubrovnik Tourist Board since 2014. It spans two weeks and offers food and wine tastings, workshops, special festival menus at restaurants, dinner events and more. Highlights include the “Dubrovnik Table” spanning the length of main street Stradun, with local chefs and restaurants presenting dishes and producing special menus. Visitors can taste regional wine and food specialties, learn about traditional cuisine in workshops and dine at discounted prices from the best restaurants located in Dubrovnik.
- Dubrovnik FestiWine. Dubrovnik FestiWine is a festival that happens only in this city, gathering over 100 regional vintners to showcase and promote local Dalmatian wines. Winemakers offer tastings of wines like Žlahtina and Vrbnička Žlahtina to visitors at organized events. Some restaurants create custom food and wine pairings, while the festival has cultural performances like traditional music and dance.
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