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Things to do in Dubrovnik

Things to do in  Dubrovnik

Welcome to Dubrovnik

Also known as the Croatian Athens, the UNESCO World Heritage–listed city of Dubrovnik certainly lives up to the accolade. The ancient city walls, with its myriad towers and turrets, date back to the 10th century and protect the many impressive monuments of the Old Town. Walking tours check off all the main sights including Onofrio's Fountain, the Franciscan Monastery and Museum, Dubrovnik Cathedral, Rector’s Palace, Renaissance-era Sponza Palace, the Church of St. Blaise, and of course, Dubrovnik’s Ancient City Walls. Beyond the Old Town, the city’s beaches and surrounding islands are popular with travelers and locals alike. Take a guided sea kayaking or snorkeling tour to discover caves and beaches along the Dalmatian coast. Or cruise by ferry, speedboat, replica 16th-century galleon, or even private yacht to the Elafiti Islands, Lokrum, Korcula Island (where Marco Polo was born), and more. For a true taste of Croatia, take a day trip to Konavle Valley region and spend the day hiking, biking, or wine tasting among the mountains, vineyards, villages, and olive groves. The Pelješac peninsula is also famed for its wine, and many excursions combine tastings in Pelješac with stops in the bayside town of Ston, known for its oysters and old salt factory. And for longer-haul trips, head to Bosnia and Herzegovina, where the town of Mostar dazzles all who gaze upon its iconic bridge, and Montenegro, the tiny country where medieval towns meet the natural beauty of fjords.

Top 15 attractions in Dubrovnik

Elafiti Islands (Elaphites)

A cluster of 14 islands along Croatia’s Dalmatian Coast, the Elafiti Islands (Elaphites) are one of the country’s most popular destinations and a popular day trip from nearby Dubrovnik. The archipelago’s largest three islets—Kolocep, Lopud, and Sipan—are the focal point of island-hopping tours.More

Dubrovnik Old Town

Located at the southern tip of Croatia, perched above the rocky coastline of the Adriatic Sea, the enchanting city of Dubrovnik attracts visitors with its medieval architecture and labyrinth of limestone-paved streets. Its Old Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, remains surrounded by 14th-century fortified stone walls.More

Dubrovnik Ancient City Walls

With their imposing watchtowers looming over the medieval city and dramatic fortifications edging the sea cliffs, Dubrovnik’s ancient city walls are an impressive sight and deserving of their star-attraction status. Dating back to the 10th century, the remarkably preserved walls—among the finest in the world—mark out the perimeter of Dubrovnik’s Old Town, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and offer magnificent views over all corners of the city.More

Elaphite Islands

Go island hopping during a trip to Dubrovnik with an excursion along the Dalmatian Coast to the Elaphite Islands (also known as the Elafiti Islands. The archipelago consists of 14 islands–including the three most popular destinations of Kolocep, Lopud, and Sipan–and is a popular destination for swimming and sunbathing.More

Dubrovnik Cable Car

Dubrovnik’s distinctive orange cable cars speed 2,500 feet (778 meters) in about three minutes, from the lower station just north of the city walls to the top of Mount Srđ. During the ride, you can enjoy peerless views of Dubrovnik’s terracotta rooftops, the coastline of Dalmatia, and archipelagos sprinkled across the Adriatic Sea.More

Lokrum Island

Just 600 meters (1 kilometer) from Dubrovnik, the car-free island of Lokrum makes a peaceful escape from the city. At its center is a medieval Benedictine monastery complex that’s surrounded by botanical gardens planted with exotic trees, flowers, and bushes. Picturesque swimming spots abound on the island’s rocky shoreline.More

Pile Gate

Constructed in 1537, this sturdy gate on the west wall of Dubrovnik’s Old Town was once locked nightly—and the wooden drawbridge leading to it was raised—to prevent intruders from gaining access to the city. More recently, the gate served as a filming location for Game of Thrones, as the site where King Joffrey was unceremoniously pelted with cow dung.More

St. Lawrence Fortress (Fort Lovrijenac)

Overlooking the Adriatic Sea from a cliff-top perch, the St. Lawrence Fortress (Fort Lovrijenac) is a Dubrovnik icon. Thought to be around 1,000 years old, the 121-foot (37-meter) fortress was used to defend the city for centuries. Today, the fort is better-known for its theatrical shows, coastal views, and starring role in HBO’sGame of Thrones.More

Stradun (Placa)

Stretching from Old Town’s western entrance at the Pile Gate to the harbor in the east, the Stradun (or Placa) was once a shallow sea channel that divided the small island on which Dubrovnik was built from the Republic of Ragusa on the mainland. In the 12th century, the Stradun was filled to create the main street in Dubrovnik’s Old Town.More

Rector's Palace (Knezev Dvor)

Dubrovnik’s 15-century, Gothic-Renaissance–style Rector's Palace (Knezev Dvor) contains the rector’s office and private chambers as well as public halls, courtrooms, and a former dungeon. Interestingly, the rector’s term was for only one month, during which time he was confined to the palace and allowed to leave only on official republic business.More

Peljesac Peninsula

Revered for its endless beaches, idyllic coves, scenic valleys, fine wines, and seafood, Croatia’s Pelješac Peninsula juts out of the center of southern Dalmatia. Without the tourist-oriented resorts and the crowds of other coastal Dalmatian destinations, the Pelješac Peninsula is the perfect spot for a relaxing holiday.More

Mljet Island

Mljet Island is Croatia’s most lush, forested island in the Adriatic Sea. The western cape contains Mljet National Park, where pine forests and spectacular saltwater lakes offer incredible natural scenery. On the nearby tiny island of St. Mary, not far from the southern shore of Veliko Jezero, there is a Benedictine monastery and St. Mary’s church.More

Franciscan Church and Monastery

The Franciscan Church and Monastery is one of the few buildings in Dubrovnik that survived the devastating earthquake of 1667. Bordered by late-Romanesque arcades, the monastery’s inner courtyard provides a quiet reprieve from Dubrovnik’s bustling Old Town. The monastery houses a small religious museum as well as one of Europe’s oldest working pharmacies.More

Dominican Monastery

Built into the eastern flank of Dubrovnik’s fortified walls adjacent to Fort Revelin, the 14th-century Dominican Monastery is designed in a combination of Romanesque, Gothic and Renaissance architecture that is seen in several of the city’s palaces and churches.The monastery’s church was rebuilt several times over the centuries and was used as an army depot during Napoleon’s occupation of Dubrovnik in the late 18th century; today its single nave features a massive painted Gothic cross by Paolo Veneziano, dating from around 1384,St Dominic by 19th century painter Vlaho Bukovac — widely regarded as Croatia’s finest artist — and sparkling contemporary stained glass in the apse.The elaborate 15th-century Gothic cloister of the monastery surrounds a shady garden that was used as stabling for French army horses and their troughs can still be seen between the cloister’s pillars. The well in the garden provided water for Dubrovnik’s residents when the city was under siege in 1991. An important collection of religious art hangs in the museum, including Titian’s sublime Mary Magdalene; other paintings of note are Nikola Božidarević’s altarpieces and triptych plus Lovro Dobričević’s bloodthirsty St Peter the Martyr, which portrays the saint with a hatchet in his head. The monastery can be visited when touring Dubrovnik’s defence walls and is included on several museum tours of the city.More

Konavle Valley

South of Dubrovnik between the Adriatic Sea and Sniježnica mountain, Konavle Valley is a pastoral dreamland dotted with vineyards, farms, and traditional hamlets. Though just a short drive from Dubrovnik Old Town, the valley feels a world away with its peaceful rural character and strong folkloric traditions.More
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Trip ideas

Dalmatia Day Trips from Dubrovnik

Dalmatia Day Trips from Dubrovnik

How to Spend 2 Days in Dubrovnik

How to Spend 2 Days in Dubrovnik

Top activities in Dubrovnik

Montenegro Full-Day Trip from Dubrovnik
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Game of Thrones Tour

Game of Thrones Tour

E-Tuk Tuk Tour in Dubrovnik

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Private all inclusive boat tours

Private all inclusive boat tours

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All about Dubrovnik

When to visit

With its program of open-air theater, film, and music, Dubrovnik Summer Festival offers a cultural alternative to the non-stop parties in coastal Croatia. After a summer spent beach- and island-hopping, the crowds depart and leave fall and winter—when the mild climate is ideal for sightseeing and Christmas markets offer festive fun—realtively quiet.

A local’s pocket guide to Dubrovnik

Sara Camarero

Sara fell in love with Croatia from the moment she stepped foot in the Mediterranean country. Find her having a cup of coffee with the locals and looking for the best spots to see the sunset in Dubrovnik.

The first thing you should do in Dubrovnik is...

take a stroll in the Old Town. Walk Stradun’s marble streets and get lost in the medieval passageways.

A perfect Saturday in Dubrovnik...

starts with a boat ride to the Elaphiti Islands of Kolocep, Sipan, and Lopud. For sunset, head to Cave Bar More and enjoy the scenery with a cocktail in hand.

One touristy thing that lives up to the hype is...

seeing Dubrovnik from the water. Admire the ancient city walls and the nearby island of Lokrum from a different perspective.

To discover the "real" Dubrovnik...

try the local cuisine in Gruž. The market is well-known for its fresh fish that you can savor in nearby restaurants at affordable prices.

For the best view of the city...

hike or take the cable car to the top of Mount Srd. If you’re still feeling energetic after the hike, visit Srd Fortress and join a fun-filled buggy safari tour of the hilltop.

One thing people get wrong...

is thinking that the Dubrovnik City Walls are too touristy. To escape the crowds and the sun, visit first thing in the morning or right before closing.

People Also Ask

Why is Dubrovnik so popular?

Dubrovnik has always been popular for its coastal location, balmy climate, and architecture. The interest in filming locations for HBO's Game of Thrones has boosted its popularity. High season is intense. Beat the crowds by visiting outside of summer, or seeing main attractions in the early morning or evening.

What should you not miss in Dubrovnik?

A stroll around Dubrovnik's city walls is a must. Access the walkway via the Ploče Gate and enjoy views of Old Town, Adriatic Sea, forts, lookouts, and Game of Thrones filming locations. For something uniquely Dubrovnikian, take a boat to the islands or cable car to the Mt. Srd peak.

How many days do you need in Dubrovnik?

Two days is enough time in Dubrovnik. Start early for a walking tour of Dubrovnik's city walls and Old Town. Then, take a sea excursion or unwind on a sunset cruise. The next day, take a cable car up Mt. Srd or a day tour of Mljet, Lokrum, or Elafiti Islands.

Do they speak English in Dubrovnik?

Yes. English is widely spoken in Dubrovnik, as it is a popular tourist destination. Locals may not be fluent, but most tourist-serving staff speak English. The official language of Croatia is Croatian, and locals appreciate it if you know a few key phrases.

Is Dubrovnik worth visiting?

Yes. Dubrovnik is worth visiting thanks to its unique history, local cuisine, and striking coastline—though these days it's best to avoid the high season and cruise arrival rush hours. If you do get stuck in the tourist traffic, there's still a great deal to enjoy—it'll just be crowded.

Is Dubrovnik expensive?

Yes. Popular Dubrovnik is a little more expensive than other destinations on the Adriatic Coast. There are ways to save while sightseeing, though. Choose tours that include meals or entrance fees, and take advantage of inclusive deals such as the Dubrovnik Card, which bundles unlimited travel with attraction access.


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