Tag Archives: Dubrovnik

What to do in Dubrovnik and what to see in Dubrovnik.

Best of Dubrovnik Travel Tips

Dubrovnik in southern Croatia is easily one of my favourite European cities, because it seems to have everything I like: beautiful views of the sea, UNESCO-listed historical beauty, great food and friendly people. The city is featured in our best European cities to visit post. This collation of our tips for what to do in Dubrovnik should help you plan your trip or simply inspire you to add Dubrovnik to your list of must-see places in Europe.

Things to do Dubrovnik

View over Dubrovnik by Amanda Kendle

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Walk Dubrovnik’s Walls

The old walls of Dubrovnik are between five and eight hundred years old (they took a few hundred years to be built!) and are certainly one of the sights which give Dubrovnik so much charm. You can walk around the top of the walls in as little as an hour, but take your time and spend closer to half a day doing it if you can.

Walking around Dubrovnik walls by Amanda Kendle

Stradun – Dubrovnik’s Main Street

In the old town, exploring Stradun, the main street, will give you a good overview of Dubrovnik in a short time. Its gorgeous architecture is reason enough to take a walk here but there are also plenty of sights located in just this small area, including the Onofrio Fountain, the Sponza Palace, St Blaise Church, the Bell Tower and the Franciscan Monastery Pharmacy.

Things to do Dubrovnik

Stradun by Neha

The Rector’s Palace

One of Dubrovnik’s must-visit buildings is The Rector’s Palace. It’s a place where you can both admire the intricate architecture as well as explore various different exhibits.

Things to do Dubrovnik

Rector’s Palace by Neha

Fort Lovrijenac

For a Dubrovnik attraction which (for once) is just outside the city walls, visit Fort Lovrijenac – you’ll probably have had a good view of it from the walls, and the entry price is included in a city wall ticket, so take the extra stroll and do it! You can get even more incredible views from the towers of the Fort and you might come across some newly-weds – it’s a very popular wedding photo venue.

Things to do Dubrovnik

Fort Lovrijenac by Neha

Dubrovnik’s Morning Market

With Dubrovnik often feeling a little over-run by tourists these days, it’s great to find something that still seems like it’s really for the locals. The morning market in Dubrovnik is held on Gundulićeva Square near the Rector’s Palace and amongst the fresh produce you’ll even find some stalls selling some locally-made souvenirs.

Things to do Dubrovnik

Dubrovnik Market by Neha

Dubrovnik’s Jewellery Boutiques

You’ll find many jewellery boutiques in the lanes of the old town, often run as family businesses,  where you can pick up hand made pieces at every reasonable prices.

Dubrovnik Jewellery Boutique by Neha

Day Trips from Dubrovnik

There are lots of fabulous day trips to make from Dubrovnik, and the most popular ones involve visiting some of the many islands situated nearby. Some of Neha’s island day trip suggestions include Korcula, Mljet and the group of 14 islands which make up the Elaphite Islands. You can use regular ferry services to these islands or join tour groups – take your pick – but you can guarantee a very scenic day out either way.

Things to do Dubrovnik

Sailing near Dubrovnik by Neha

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More Tips for Things to Do in Croatia

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Dubrovnik Attractions – Fort Lovrijenac

Fort Lovrijenac is a Dubrovnik landmark that isn’t located within the city walls. It can be seen from along the walls over the Pile Gate, and is one of the most photographed landmarks in the city.

The fort was built to defend the ancient kingdom against the advancing Venetian army. Its walls are 121 feet high, and overlook the water. Entry to the Fort is included within the price of the wall tours.

Dubrovnik Attractions - Fort Lovrijenac

A Different Perspective – Most tourists scale the Dubrovnik city walls for views of the city, which includes Fort Lovrijenac. But for a different angle, walk the short distance from the Pile Gate to the Fort and enjoy a fresh look at Dubrovnik’s old core. While the tower interiors are plain, the views are worth the climb.

Drama on the Adriatic – The Fort Lovrijenac is one of the most important venues during the Dubrovnik Summer Festival. At this time the Fort transforms into a theatrical venue. It is best known for staging productions of Shakespeare, particularly Hamlet, in addition to other regional and internationally renowned plays.

A Stage for a Wedding – The fort doubles up as a wedding venue too. With the lapping water and towering history, it is a very romantic setting. It has an on location chapel (chapel of St. Lawrence) and its courtyard, which is also the stage for theatrical performances, hosts wedding parties. The Fort stairways too have become an iconic setting for the perfect ‘newly weds’ photograph.

Tips for Things to Do in Dubrovnik

Find more tips on things to do in the city in our Best of Dubrovnik Tips post.

Click here for the lowest prices on Dubrovnik hotels

More Tips for Things to Do in Croatia

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Stradun – The Heart of Dubrovnik

If you don’t have too much time to spend in Dubrovnik, the city’s main street, Stradun, is where you hit the ground running to start your Dubrovnik sightseeing. The street runs from the Pile Gate to the Ploce Gate and is lined with Dubrovnik attractions, atmosphere and activity:

The Large Onofrio Fountain – The large Onofrio fountain is located very close to the Pile Gate. It was constructed in 1438 to source water for the city from the Dubrovacka River located 12km over. This is a great place to enjoy street artists and to catch a breath.

The Stairway to the Walls – The Pile Gate is also where you can begin your tour of the ramparts.  One set of stairs begin right opposite the fountain; the tickets for the wall tour are available at the tourist office, located on the other side of the fountain.

The Stepping Stone – While sitting at the fountain you’ll see a number of tourists jumping onto a small stone jutting from the monastery wall, or trying to. The challenge is to get there without support. Given the stone isn’t wide enough, this can be a very entertaining spot.

Franciscan Monastery – The Franciscan Monastery is one of the oldest pharmacies in Europe. It  has been filling up prescription since 1317. You can learn more about the time at the pharmacy museum inside.

The Sponza Palace – The Sponza Palace was once the local mint. Today it doubles up as a city archive and exhibition hall. Of particular interest is the Memorial Room of the Dubrovnik Defenders, in memory of soldiers who lost their lives during the war.

The Bell Tower – The bell tower closes or frames out one end of Stradun. It is located between the Ploce Gate and the St. Blaise Church. Be sure to catch the two green bronze structures, the Dubrovnik twins, ringing the bell every hour.

Orlando’s Column– Orlando’s Column on the Luza Square was put in place in the 15th century as a symbol of the kingdom’s independence. Back then it was the point of public gatherings, today it is a focal meeting point in the city.

St. Blaise Church – At the edge of the street is the St. Blaise Church. It was built in honour of the patron saint, and he can be found standing over the church and in the church. The stained glass windows, the newest addition to the church, are worth seeing post sundown.

The other attractions on Stradun are the fancy cafes and boutiques. However, it is important to keep in mind that these establishments can pack quite a punch on the wallet.

Tips for Things to Do in Dubrovnik

Find more tips on things to do in the city in our Best of Dubrovnik Tips post.

Click here for the lowest prices on Dubrovnik hotels

More Tips for Things to Do in Croatia

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Dubrovnik Attractions – The Rector’s Palace

Considered by many as one of the best places to visit in Europe, Dubrovnik is always packed; there is a steady stream of tourists and activities all year round. When you add the crazy prices of Dubrovnik to this equation it becomes impossible (rather impractical) to visit every museum and local landmarks in the city. But there are a few you shouldn’t miss out on. The wall walk is one, and the Rector’s Palace is another; it is also my Europe travel tip of the week.

The exterior facade of the Palace is a work of art in itself. Intricately carved figures hold up pillars and trims and run across the length of the building. The Rector’s Palace was the official seat of power in the old republic of Ragusa – it housed the ruling Rector through his reign; the Rector was not to leave the Palace except on urgent matters involving the welfare of the republic. The Rector’s term was also limited in order to curb corruption.

Inside the Palace opens up into a central courtyard. Rooms run all around the ground level and on the upper floor. The atrium is a popular choice for music concerts during the summer months; it is one of the main venues during the Dubrovnik Summer Festival.

The upper floor doubles up as a cultural history museum. The rooms are furnished with articles from the old kingdom and also hold artworks created by Venetian and Dalmatian masters. The rooms are luxurious and detailed. There’s also an exhibit on official republic regalia complete with coins, seals, flags and other official documentation from the period.

Along with the history exhibits, the Rector’s Palace also houses a photography exhibit. The photos on display are from the homeland war and document the destruction and damage Dubrovnik had to suffer.

Have you visited the Rector’s Palace in Dubrovnik? What did you think of the exhibits?

Find Accommodation in Dubrovnik

Dubrovnik is an ideal location for a short break or holiday. You can find great deals at hotels in Dubrovnik using the laterooms.com search box below.

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Shopping in Dubrovnik: Jewellery Stores

Dubrovnik offers a variety of experiences and memories such as walking the town walls and shopping at the Dubrovnik Morning Market. However the small lanes of the old town manage to fit in century old establishments, footballs games and restaurants with outdoor seating, and all comfortably.

It is on these back lanes that you’ll find the many tiny jewellery boutiques of Dubrovnik.

First there’s the familiar window display – strings of coral and pearl, silver earrings with filigree work and coral drops, chunky blocks of turquoise strung together with crooked corals, all dangling together against the window. Inside, depending on the store the setting varies – from the cold and clinical designer boutique to the chaotic but warm family establishment.

The jewellery is handcrafted in backdoor workshops or in roomier ones beyond the gates of the old town. Many jewellers have been in the business for decades, taking over from their parents and grandparents. On offer are traditional necklaces, earrings, bracelets, rings, buttons and broaches. And the prices range from 250 Kuna upwards depending on the piece and the materials used.

I stepped into one such family run establishment on a street parallel to Stradun. The cases on the wall held traditional jewellery designs, or designs inspired by traditional Croatian designs along with ageing authentic pieces. The originals, of course were not for sale. These were family heirlooms to be enjoyed at a distance. They however did make a good reference point to compare the new designs with the old. I ended up with two sets of silver earrings, each with coral drops. The filigree work on them is breathtaking as are the coral drops – a day well spent.

Tips for Things to Do in Dubrovnik

Find more tips on things to do in the city in our Best of Dubrovnik Tips post.

Click here for the lowest prices on Dubrovnik hotels

More Tips for Things to Do in Croatia

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Photo Essay: The Morning Market in Dubrovnik

The problem with popular tourist destinations like Dubrovnik is that at times it’s hard to separate the real city from the tourist show. So while you get to see the ramparts and the art around the city, you barely get a glimpse of the people who make this place tick.

A great place to see the real people of Dubrovnik is the morning market on the Gundulićeva Square, bang opposite the Rector’s Palace. Of course, they put on a little show, it’s an integral part of the city, but between the market promotions and offers of the ‘best figs in all Croatia’, you’ll see the real smiles, you’ll eavesdrop on real conversations.

The market place is dominated by the statue of poet Ivan Gundulić. If you come early you’ll see pigeons playing around him, but later during the day when all the stalls are set up, it looks like he is floating on umbrellas.

The market operates six days a week, from Monday to Saturday, with the first stalls opening around 7:00 am – the perfect opportunity to shop for fresh breakfast ingredients. It shuts at 3:00 pm, when the cheery vendors are replaced by the cleaning crew.

Most of the stalls are manned by older folk, all armed with warm smiles and broken English. Even if you aren’t buying much, strike a conversation over the produce and you’re guaranteed to get a story out of it.

Fresh fruits, vegetables, cheese, figs, eggs, honey, olive oil, aromatic oils, liqueurs, wines, flowers, souvenirs and friendly conversations – it’s all available here.

If you’re on the lookout for souvenirs, I recommend finding them at the market. Chances are you’ll get a better price here for the same articles found in the boutiques on the main street. You’ll also get to see local artisans creating the very souvenirs, like the lady in the photo above.

Tips for Things to Do in Dubrovnik

Find more tips on things to do in the city in our Best of Dubrovnik Tips post.

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Walking along the walls in Dubrovnik

I made my way to Dubrovnik earlier this month. It was my first visit to Croatia’s most popular tourist destination, I was excited, and a little weary – hyped up destinations have a way disappointing. As it turned out there was no such let down.

Photo - Nilay Puntambekar

Being early May, the weather was unsteady. The forecast promised rain but at the time the sky was clear. There was only one major point on my agenda: take on the walls and ramparts of Dubrovnik before the weather turned.

About the walls – Dubrovnik’s walls are about 25 meters high and along with the four corner forts encircle the city’s old core. Construction of these walls began in the 13th century but was only completed around the 16th century. During the summer, the walls are accessible from 8:00am to 6:30pm for a fee of 70 Kuna. The tour begins from inside the Pile Gate, right opposite the Onofrio fountain and takes you up along the edge of the stone fortification.

Photo - Nilay Puntambekar

Why take the walk – The walk throws up spectacular views of the city and the sea. It displays the town’s most popular street – Stradun as well as all its churches and landmarks in one glorious sweep. In addition to popular sights, a walk along the walls also throws up forgotten ruins as well as glimpses of regular life in a spot otherwise filled with tourists – locals go about tending to their gardens, attending school, fixing rooftops even as tourists stop and watch. For history and trivia buffs it is worth opting for the audio guide on offer (40 Kuna).

Photo - Nilay Puntambekar

Best time to go – The entire walk can be wrapped up in an hour at the earliest, but you have the option of taking it as easy as you like. It is best to go early during the day or the second half of the afternoon, when the sun isn’t as harsh. While the walk is exhaustive, there are a number of breaks and halts (complete with ice cream and coffee) along the way where you can catch your breath. Don’t discard your tickets as you may be required to produce them at several points along the route.

Tips for Things to Do in Dubrovnik

Find more tips on things to do in the city in our Best of Dubrovnik Tips post.

Click here for the lowest prices on Dubrovnik hotels

More Tips for Things to Do in Croatia

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Dubrovnik – One of the New Hot Spots in Europe

When people talk about Croatian tourism what generally comes to mind is the gorgeous city of Dubrovnik, which is located on the southern coast. Dubrovnik is now one of the hot spots for tourism and for good reason, as the city is absolutely gorgeous.

View from the Dubrovnik city wall

View from the Dubrovnik city wall

The city of Dubrovnik is spectacular itself, but the main tourist destination is inside the city walls. Inside the city walls there are gorgeous churches, many restaurants, shops, souvenir shops, and cafes. A visit to Dubrovnik is not complete without taking a walk on top of the city walls, where you can walk around the entire walled city center and have fantastic views of the coast and the lively town center. The walk takes a couple of hours, but it is something that can’t be missed and it only costs around 50 kunas, which is only 5 pounds.

If you go during the summer get ready for the tourists, as Dubrovnik is a secret no longer and there are throngs of tourists, especially in the city center, but even with them all around it is hard not to walk around in wonder at this wonderful city. The main highlights in the city are the main street, Stradun, the Prince’s Palace, the church of St Vlaho, the Cathedral, the 3 large monasteries, the Custom’s Office and the City Hall. The coast is picturesque and a there are many great places just to soak up the sun and take a dip.

View from window in Dubrovnik city wall

View from window in Dubrovnik city wall

One of the best ways to get to Dubrovnik is to take a ferry ship, which departs from either Rijeka in the northern part of the country or Split, which is in the middle of Croatia right on the coast. The ferry is an overnight one and has restaurants, nightclubs, and various shops. The ride from Split to Dubrovnik is especially nice, as you meander through some of the islands and it gives you awe inspiring views of the amazing coastline.

The food is amazing in Dubrovnik, especially the seafood. There are many restaurants inside the city walls and just outside and the prices are reasonable. There are also many cafes and gelato stands, where you can get gelato that is comparable to the gelato in Italy. On my bio you can see me, sloppily, enjoying some gelato from Dubrovnik on the main street in the city center.

Tips for Things to Do in Dubrovnik

Find more tips on things to do in the city in our Best of Dubrovnik Tips post.

Click here for the lowest prices on Dubrovnik hotels

More Tips for Things to Do in Croatia

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