The Best Things to do in Dubrovnik, Croatia | 3 Days Travel Itinerary
April 22, 2020
The city of Dubrovnik has been seeing a steady spike in tourism in the recent years, largely attributed to the hit TV-series, Game of Thrones. Several iconic scenes in the show were filmed in the historic Old Town of Dubrovnik, where you would find streets made of cobblestone and smooth marble. Be transported to medieval times as you venture into the town’s hidden narrow side streets lined with a variety of cafes, shops and galleries.
Table of Contents
Weather | When is the best time to visit Dubrovnik?
The best times to visit Dubrovnik would be in either end May or early September. This is when the weather is warm, there is low precipitation and less crowds. Avoid visiting in June to August due to it being the peak travel season in Europe (because of the summer holidays). Unless you don’t mind the crowds, you’d still be blessed with good sunny weather if you travel between this period.
Temperatures start to dip below 19 degrees celsius in October and precipitation levels will rise. The weather between October to March is cold and will not be ideal if you’re looking to swim at the beach or get a sun tan. However, Christmas, New Year’s and Easter celebrations happen during this period so it does provide a different experience and atmosphere compared to going during the summer season.
Transportation | What is the best way to get around Durbovnik?
Public Buses and Walking There are no trains, trams or metros in Dubrovnik as the town is accessible by public buses and by walking. Dubrovnik Old Town is easy to navigate by foot and you’d be able to reach all the attractions you’re intending to visit around the area.
Taxis and Car Hires For car hire, you can prebook one online for transfer from the Airport to Dubrovnik Old Town. Uber is also available in Dubrovnik so you can conveniently hire one through your phone. Lastly, Taxi stands can be found at several places such as the Pile Gate, Gruz and Lapad Bus Station.
Driving Driving on your own is not recommended as it is crowded and the narrow streets make parking extremely limited. You will also not be allowed to drive within Old Town as it has been pedestrianised.
Getting from Dubrovnik Airport to Dubrovnik Old Town
Option #1: Dubrovnik Airport Shuttle Bus
There are shuttle buses that run direct routes from Dubrovnik Airport to the entrance of Old Town. The bus service is timed to coincide with flight arrivals at the airport, so you should not have to wait more than 15 minutes to depart.
The most popular operating shuttle bus company is Atlas. You can purchase a bus ticket at their airport counter (located on the right-side after exiting the baggage claim area). The duration of the ride will be about 30 minutes with each one-way ticket priced at €7.
The airport bus stops at the western entrance to the Old Town, Pile Gate. Walking from Pile Gate to the eastern entrance, Ploca Gate, will take you about 7 minutes (600 metres). If you’re not keen on walking, then you’d have to take a taxi if you want to be dropped off at Ploca Gate.
Option #2: Taxi / Uber
Alternatively, of course, you can always hire a Taxi or take an Uber. The cost will run between €22-€27.
Accommodation | Where to stay in Dubrovnik?
If you want to be located in the heart of everything, Old Town is the place to stay. However, take note that prices within Old Town is pricey due to its popularity. If you’re looking for a cheaper option, look for hotels located walking distance outside of Old Town.
Adriatic Apartments is located just a short 5-minute walk from Ploca Gate entrance. It’s a cosy and clean apartment with a kitchen and I thoroughly enjoyed my stay here. Although it was not located within Old Town itself, it was still conveniently located and we could get around to places of interest mostly on foot.
Our 3 Days Dubrovnik Travel Itinerary
1. Walk on City Walls
Old Town is surrounded by 2 km of thick stone walls, reaching up to 25 metres in height. The walls were built back in the 11th century to protect the city from pirates and other invaders. These walls that encircle the town is Dubrovnik’s most iconic feature that overlooks the beautiful Adriatic ocean. The walk along the city walls offers the best views of the town – from the town’s red-tiled roof tops to stunning coastlines and view of nearby islands.
It will take you between 1-2 hours to complete one round around the wall, depending on how many photo stops you’re going to make. It gets really crowded along the wall after 10am as cruise ship traffic begins to come it, so wake up early if you want to avoid the crowds and have a more pleasant stroll around it. There are 3 places to start the walk on the walls: Pile Gate, Fort St. John’s and Fort St. Luke. We started from Pile Gate and walked in a counter-clockwise direction.
Opening Hours: 8am to 6pm (varies slightly accordingly to season) Entrance Fee: 200 HRK – Adults | 50 HRK – Children & Students
After you’ve finished your hike around the walls, spend some time exploring the streets of the Old Town. You can grab lunch and tea here as there is a wide variety of restaurants, gelato shops, boutiques and cafes along the main Stradun street. Turn into one of the narrow streets made of cobblestone along the way and you’ll find yourself transported to medieval times.
The Game of Thrones Tour in Dubrovnik is the most popular walking tour among fans of GoT, this is where you’ll get taken to the different filming locations of the show to take pictures with an informative guide.
1. Kayaking Tour
We booked a 3-hour Kayaking Tour to sightsee Dubrovnik’s fortifications from a different view point. Together with a group of 10 people, we followed our guide to Kayak around Lokum Island and then into a hidden cave.
The waves were really choppy and it was an extremely tiring 3 hours, so do remember to bring along some water and snacks with you. If you’re prone to sea sickness, take whatever medication you’d need beforehand as well. If you think that 3 hours is too long for you, there are also a 2.5-hour Kayaking Tour available, but do remember to book at least 1-day in advance as these slots tend to get filled up fast.
2. See Panoramic Views of Dubrovnik on Mount Srd
Mount Srd is located just behind Dubrovnik and has a height of 393 metres above the sea level. The mountain is also known as the protector of Dubrovnik as it acted as a shield for the Croatians during their earlier wars and battles.
The summit offers a stunning aerial view of Dubrovnik where you can witness the sunsetting across the horizon. There are 5 ways of getting to the top depending on your preference.
I have written a separate post about this here. Read it to decide which way is best for you!
1. Old Port Dubrovnik
Located at the eastern part of the city, the old port of Dubrovnik is the main dock for many private boats and is also where the regular boat to Lokrum departs from. The Old Port consists of calm waters and colourful boats lined up along the shore, whereas, the atmosphere is vibrant and you can find many stalls selling gelato and other snacks right beside it.
2. Visit Lokrum Island
While you are at the Old Port of Dubrovnik, buy a ticket beside the dock and hop on the ferry heading to Lokrum Island. The ferry leaves every half-hour and there is no need to buy tickets in advance. You can view the timetable for the ferry here.
Price of ferry ticket: 40 HRK Duration: 15 minutes
You can easily spend half a day on the island. Some of the things you can expect to do on the island includes taking a dip in salt water lake, walking along scenic coast lines, hiking up to fort royal, exploring the gardens where you can find wild rabbits and peacocks and just relaxing on a chair by the beach.
This stop in Dubrovnik is actually part of my 2-week Europe Itinerary. On day 4, we left Dubrovnik at 8am in the morning to take a flight to Austria. Overall, we loved our visit to Dubrovnik and the vibe of the Old Town was absolutely charming. The city is a must to visit especially for Game of Thrones fans as you’ll find familiarity as you walk along the streets and reminisce areas where scenes were filmed.