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Dubrovnik Tourism And Travel Guide
13.8° C / 56.8° F
May to November
4 to 5 Days
Dubrovnik Airport (18 kms)
Dubrovnik is a very significant city of Croatia, kissing the Adriatic sea and holding its roots since almost a millennium. What attracts tourism to Dubrovnik is its seamless blend of strong, historical buildings and beautiful beaches with baroque houses, red-roofed houses and shingle shores, old palaces, theatres and Game of Thrones. One can truly feel the best of both worlds - sightseeing as well as leisure. If you are up for a trip to this ‘Pearl’ of Adriatic then here’s a small travel guide.
How to Reach
The best way to get to Dubrovnik from India is by air. It does not have a railway station so from Europe, you can either reach by road, or by sea.
Croatia’s two main airports include those in Zagreb and Dubrovnik. You can reach Zagreb easily by taking a flight from Mumbai or Delhi and then have the flight connecting to Dubrovnik. Most flights from Mumbai to Dubrovnik anyway layover at Zagreb first.
Dubrovnik is 227 km from Split and 600 km from Zagreb. The roads are well connected and maintained and loads of buses ply the routes. You can also drive a hired car. This is the only way to reach Dubrovnik from other parts of Croatia and Europe if you discount flights.
Since Dubrovnik sits by the shore, it is easy to reach it by water transport. Mostly the vessels floating from Hvar, Sudurad, Korcula and Brac reach frequently to Dubrovnik’s shore, as well as those plying from Bari on Italy’s Puglia coast outside the country.
In Dubrovnik, local buses are the best way to get by cheaply. There are no trains or trams, so you will have to rely on taxis. People also rent bicycles to take special tours and choose to go by foot when exploring the Old Town and other ancient parts of the city.
Weather and Best Time to Visit
The best touristy time in Dubrovnik is summer, however, autumn is a better time if you want a moe budget holiday with lesser crowds.
Summer is nice and hot here, with the maritime influence from the sea leaving Dubrovnik perfectly amicable. Beaches are at their best and many festivals are held. This is an expensive time and too crowded, since a lot of European tourists descend to chill here for summer.
We recommend the months of September-October to visit Dubrovnik as the temperatures are slightly cooler, with a mild range of 19-26°C, and the crowds have thinned immensely, leaving some open spaces and cheaper accommodations.
Winter & Spring (November to April):
The winter time in Dubrovnik is a big no-no as it does not favour the beaches. With dropping temperatures, rainfall also becomes imminent, although not too bad for stepping out.
Things to Do
Explore Dubrovnik's Old Town:
Dubrovnik is known for its old-world charm and the Old Town is the best area to feel it. With its Clock tower and cobble-stone streets, forts and baroque houses, the place is abuzz with local as well as tourist activity. There is also the Onofrio Fountain, Stradun Street and much more to explore here.
Take a Game of Thrones tour:
Well, well, well, the star attraction of Dubrovnik lately has been its association with the filming of HBO hit series Game of Thrones. Visit the Old City Walls that double up as the defending ramparts of King’s Landing, explore the Rector’s Palace as well as Lokrum island to see many of season 2 sets.
Go Cable-Car Riding to Srd:
A part of Dubrovnik is clearly sandwiched between the Adriatic and Mount Srd. And a cable car way connects the two ends. This ride is a must and will give you stunning views of the city.
Buy from a Medieval Pharmacy:
All those history buffs and myth-fiction fans, apothecaries in your favourite Diana Gabaldon and George R. Martin books are nothing to this pharmacy in Franciscan Monastery, the oldest working pharmacy in Europe. Visit here to check out their still in sale lotions, potions and salves that are made from ancient recipes.
Enjoy the Beaches:
Dubrovnik is admired for its sea and where there is sea, there are beaches. Mostly they are pebbled and shingled. The best to visit are Banje Beach (for families and tourists) and Sveti Jakov (usually visited by locals).
What to Eat
Croatian food is a delectable mix of Mediterranean, Italian, Spanish and has a touch of its own rich heritage. When in Dubrovnik, do try some of its special delicacies, including the dirty macaroni (penne or mac in meat and marinara), black risotto (rice, butter, parmesan and SQUID), Peka (lamb under bell) and Bakalar na bijelo. The seafood here is also fresh and delicious, as are the wines. Other delights include young cow cheese, stone cake (a type of pasta and chocolate cake) and rosata (a type of syrupy panna cotta).
What to Shop
Dubrovnik isn’s a shopping haunt for shopaholic souls, but does pack a punch when it comes to real, charming souvenirs to stuff your bags with. Pick up delicate lavender oil bottles from here, olive oil, lotion jars, corals and handmade jewellery made using the stone. You can also take back a bottle or two of the Croatian wine and Rakija liqueur. And while you are at it, don’t forget the patent Croatian tie, also known as ‘cravat.’