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.
Whether you arrive in Dubrovnik by sea or land, the towering city walls will be the first thing you see, and there’s no escaping their presence. The most adventurous way to explore the ancient walls is to walk their entire length, while Dubrovnik walking tours often include a visit to popular lookouts such as the Pile Gate or the Minceta Tower. For the best views of the walls themselves, opt for a boat cruise or sea kayaking excursion and gaze up at the mighty ramparts from the ocean.
Things to Know Before You Go
- There is a one-way (counterclockwise) system operating on the walls, so once you start walking, you must continue until the next exit point.
- Bring a hat, sunscreen, and plenty of water in summer, as there is little shade atop the walls.
- Wear comfortable shoes.
- Due to the many steps and uneven ground, the walls are not wheelchair or stroller accessible.
How to Get There
Dubrovnik’s ancient city walls encircle Old Town and are reachable on foot from anywhere in the city’s historic center. The walls’ main entrance is at the Pile Gate on the western wall, but you can also enter from the Minceta Tower in the north and the Ploce Gate in the east.
When to Get There
Dubrovnik’s city walls are open to the public year-round, although opening times vary throughout the year. The walls can get busy during the peak summer months, so it’s best to make an early start to beat the crowds. Avoid walking between 11am and 3pm, when the sun is at its strongest.
Walking the Dubrovnik City Walls
The best way to experience the walls of Dubrovnik is to hike the 1.2-mile (2-kilometer) circular route, which loops around all of Old Town. Start by climbing up to the ramparts above the Pile Gate, pass the Minceta Tower and Fort Lovrijenac (one of several “Game of Thrones” filming locations in Dubrovnik), and then continue to the Ploce Gate and around the Old City Harbor. Along the way, enjoy spectacular ocean views and admire landmarks including the Dominican Monastery, Revelin Fortress, Mount Srd, and 15th-century Bokar Fortress.