#1 To Experience Old Town
The Old Town of Dubrovnik is the heart of the city. From there, you can easily walk to most places—Old Town is actually a car-free zone. Stradun (officially named ‘Placa’) is Old Town’s main street. Both sides of Stradun are packed with cafes, shops and restaurants. Besides the vibrant main street, Old Town is a place to admire landscape views and historic architecture. Be sure to spend a sunset here and sip a wine flight as lingering light reflects off the red roofs of Old Town.
#2 For the Island-Hopping
Experience the Mediterranean island life by taking a ferry to Dubrovnik’s surrounding islands. A quick, 10-minute ferry ride will take you over to Lokrum, a forested nature reserve island. There are no houses or accommodations on Lokrum, just a large medieval Benedictine monastery, amazing swimming holes, and plenty of oak, pine, and olive trees. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can kayak to the island from Dubrovnik!
Not much further in the other direction from the coast is the Elafiti island group, which lies northwest of the city and consists of several islands. The most popular islands, Kolocep, Lopud and Sipan, are all best traveled by bicycle, as both Kolocep and Lopud are vehicle-free. We recommend staying overnight on the islands, exploring the sandy beaches and hidden coves, hiking trails and bike paths, and ancient ruins of old churches.
#3 To Walk the Medieval City Walls
Walking the Dubrovnik Walls is something we recommend doing on your first few days of visiting, as it gives you a good lay of the land, a history lesson about where you are, and some of the most spectacular views of the city. The walls are 1,940 meters long with six fortresses. The majority of the walls were built in the 15th and 16th century, acting as defensive walls from danger of foreign attacks.
Save yourself time on vacation and book your tickets of admission online. Walk at your own pace and admire as you’d like—the whole loop typically takes about one to three hours. If you want more information about sites you’re seeing, walking tours are also available for purchase. Did you know that the famous HBO TV series, “Game of Thrones,” was partly filmed in Dubrovnik? Take a tour of those locations, as well!
#4 For the Beaches
Well, this one is quite obvious! Good beaches aren’t hard to find in Dubrovnik. Banje Beach is the most centrally located, accessed from the eastern entrance to Old Town. At Banje you’ll find soft sand, a bar and restaurant, lounge chairs for rent, but you’ll also find the crowds. If you’re looking for a beach that’s a bit more secluded, try Sveti Jakov Beach or Danče Beach.
#5 To Dine in Some of the Best Croatian Restaurants
One of our favorite parts about travel is tasting new foods and trying the local restaurants. Dubrovnik is a great place for this—from award-winning fine dining like Natutika to a downtown Stradun ice cream shop like GosSip. If you already planned to take the Dubrovnik Cable Car up the hill behind the city to get amazing views, you may as well eat at the Panorama Restaurant & Bar while you’re there—the name speaks for itself!
The best time to visit Dubrovnik is September and October, when the temperatures have cooled down a bit, but the water still remains warm enough for a swim. May through October is the busy season, and can often be hot and crowded in the middle of the day. If you visit during those busy summer months, be sure to explore early in the morning or into the evening when the crowds calm down a bit. As always, we encourage visitors to travel responsibly in destinations all over the world.