Travel Guide: Dubrovnik, Croatia
Length of Stay: 2 Nights
Ah my final travel guide for Croatia – definitely a bitter sweet! Through the years of blogging, I have come to love writing these types of posts. Although they are the most time consuming (by far), they are definitely the most rewarding and the ones I enjoy the most! It is always sad when a trip is over, but by writing these posts I get to relive that experience over and over again. I love all of the e-mails I get from you guys about these posts, and it is honestly because of you that I put so much in to putting them together. My goal with all my travel guides (you can find them all under “Categories” at the top of my blog and then “Travel“) is to help you plan a potential trip or be informed about a destination in the most useful way possible. As always, if I missed any information of you have questions about something in particular, do not hesitate to comment below or shoot me an e-mail!
WHERE WE STAYED:
Hotel More – I don’t even have enough words to describe how great this boutique hotel is. Situated in the Bay of Lapad, this hotel offers breathtaking views of the sea (but warning: you do not overlook Dubrovnik like some other hotels). Our room had a large balcony, which even came with a hot tub (Matt was way more excited about that amenity than me ha!) If you are wanting to take a dip in a pool, the hotel has a smaller sized pool one on the middle levels that also overlooks the water. Matt and I however (along with the majority of the guests) took advantage of the lounge/beach area on the lower level which had day beds and steps right into the water. This came in handy after a long day in town when we were dripping in sweat and wanting to cool off.
There is also a natural cave under the hotel which was found during the construction of Hotel More. It is now home to the well known “Cave Bar” and is over three (small) stories where you can sit and enjoy a cocktail and take in the ambiance.
Our hotel was a quick 8 minute cab ride into town, which we easily did twice a day (exploring and then back again for dinner). We didn’t find it to be all that expensive, there is a bus stop down the road from the hotel that also takes you into town, but we found the cab to be easiest. Unlike in Split, we never had any trouble getting a cab within minutes, which definitely makes staying slightly outside of the old town an easy option.
< Cave Bar >
< View from the lobby balcony >
WHAT TO KNOW:
In the peak of summer, Dubrovnik is HOT! I would highly suggest getting up and into town early before the heat really kicks in. Especially inside the city walls there is not much air circulation and the combo of that and tons of tourists leaves things a little hot and sticky.
Heights – Just keep in mind (especially if you are afraid of heights) that a lot of the neat experiences do require being high up. You can easily enjoy the city itself from the inside, but a lot of the appeal is on top and overlooking the city below.
Easy to conquer the “attractions” all in a day (or two). Matt and I started with the city walls, then the cable car and ended with the Benje Beach Club all the same day and before noon! Other popular tourist attractions include taking a boat ride, kayaking around the city walls, and a Game of Thrones themed tour because they film a lot of the show in the city (snooze fest, but Matt loves the show so I had to give in).
Dubrovnik Summer Festival- While we were there, they had these summer concert series going on; I believe these festival also includes a lot of theatrical performances as well, but we only saw the concerts. One night after dinner and a cocktail we stumbled upon the festival in the streets and they truly had the most amazing DJ paired with an incredible saxophone player. We spent the next few hours taking in the culture and dancing in the streets with everyone. It was one of the coolest experiences ever and nothing like that (no security, etc.) would ever happen in NYC!
< Summer Concert Series >
WHAT TO DO:
Walk the City Walls – We had the tip of doing this early and first thing in the morning before the cruise ships arrive for the day and it gets too crowded. We took this advice, got up early and into the city and had no problem walking the entire wall. If you happen to run into a massive crowd, we were told to ask a worker for which side had the better view and only focus on doing that half. It was gorgeous and a must if in Dubrovnik. The views are gorgeous (you can peer down into Old City) and it only took us an hour to an hour and a half to get around in full. Also, you really don’t need to spend money on a tour guide, it is easy to do yourself!
Cable Car – Once again, we got lucky with the line situation here because there was hardly one (and we heard stories of very long lines). We came right after walking the city walls around 10:30/11:00am. You take a 3 minute cable car ride up the side of the mountain and are exposed to the most stunning views of the city of Dubrovnik below. The cable car was actually quite affordable and a must do!
Banje Beach Club – Like I mentioned before, Dubrovnik was hands down the hottest of the fours spots we visited in Croatia. My husband knows me well and when I get too much sun I start to shut down. He had researched and planned to stop at Banje Beach Club after our cable car ride and it was the perfect break in our day. We packed our suits in the morning and changed once we got settled here. You can rent towels, beach chairs and umbrellas so there is no need to lug anything. They had music going, drinks and food being served and the water never felt so good. You also had a great view looking over and into the city from the outside. We spent about 3 hours here before walking around the old city a little more, grabbing gelato and then heading back to the hotel.
Café Buza (aka “Buza Bar”) – A small hole in the old city walls (literally, see my “cold drinks” arrow sign below) by the sea with great views once in. There are tables and chairs set out on the side of a cliff where you will see people enjoying cocktails and then sunbathing, swimming and cliff jumping below. The drinks are on the pricier side, but a really neat experience to watch the sunset or enjoy the entertainment below. — To get there, you want to walk up the stairs on the left side of Stradun as you near Pile gate coming from Ploce gate. Continue up until you hit the city walls, and then walk all the way down. You will follow a sign that says “cold drinks” and enter through a hole in the wall.
< “Cold Drinks” sign I referenced >
< See the guy cliff jumping?! >
< The view of Buza Bar from walking the city walls >
WHERE TO EAT:
To be honest, Matt and I didn’t go in with much of a food plan for Dubrovnik. We knew the majority of our meals would be in the old city and sort of be-bopped around while there figuring out dinner spots. For lunch the one day we ate at Banje Beach Club, it was nothing exciting and very basic, but the water and lounge chair situation was too good to leave (see pictures above). Our last night we googled “best seafood in Dubrovnik” and Proto came up so we gave that a try. It was a bit on the pricier side, but the wine and selections were delicious and would recommend giving it a go if you are a seafood person. The mussels (which they are known for in Croatia) were delicious and I couldn’t stop lapping up the sauce with the homemade bread!
Poco Loco – Make sure to swing by for a cocktail. They are known for making specialty drinks that are oh so delicious! Nestled right in the heart of the city, grab a seat outside and take you time going through their large cocktail menu and selecting a drink.
This restaurant is before you enter old city, expensive but a gorgeous view (we did not eat here).