Dubrovnik is a beautiful old city perched on limestone cliffs overlooking the Adriatic Sea. Its historic buildings, remarkable walls, and breathtaking views offer the visitor eyeful after fabulous eyeful. Shops, restaurants, museums, walking tours, and much more await. However, Dubrovnik may not appear very large area-wise and it might be difficult to gauge how many days one needs to experience a fulfilling sightseeing visit to the city. Some travelers will be making a one-day or two-day stopover while others may want to use Dubrovnik as a base point while adding more of the surrounding viewpoints and scenery to their itinerary. So let's take a look at how you might want to spend your time in and around Dubrovnik if you have only a day, two days, or about a week. Then we highly recommend getting in touch with one of our GoWithGuide team members who will be able to not only give you a personalized tour of the town, but whose experience and knowledge will enable them to create a plan that will make the most of your time however you may want to spend it!
Perhaps most visitors coming to Dubrovnik are making it one of several stopovers during a European journey. Fortunately, many of the city's landmarks and sightseeing hotspots are within the centrally located Old Town district. With only a day to spend in Dubrovnik, you can still leave feeling satisfied that you saw many of the city's best attractions.
The city walls are an excellent choice for either starting an early day exploring the city, or wrapping up an enjoyable day taking in historic landmarks and partaking of the local cuisine. For the early bird, there's nothing like the view of the Old Town at dawn as the sun climbs over the mountains to the east. If sunset is more to your preference, then revel in the glow of dusk when the low sunlight casts a warm glow over the pale gray limestone walls and structures, making the orange and red roofs positively glow. The walls were constructed from the 12th century to the 17th century and served to keep out would-be attackers from the sea. Their total length is just under two kilometers, their thickness between four and six meters, and they reach their highest at 25 meters. A tour of the walls should include the must-see landmarks imperative to the city’s defense, such as the Revelin and Lovrijenac Fortresses and the Minceta Tower. Guided walking tours of the walls will provide you not only with access to the best views at the best time of day, but also our knowledgeable guides can fill you in on the pertinent historic details.
The main part of your day should be spent on foot in the Old Town. Though the city was severely damaged by an earthquake in 1667 and many of the buildings had to be rebuilt, some important structures remain from Medieval and Renaissance times. The Gothic Rector's Palace is now open as a history museum where you can learn about the 1,400-year history of the city, from when it was called Ragusa and throughout the ages when it passed from different protectorates and rose to a prosperous city that sent ships far and wide. There's also the baroque St. Blaise Church, named after the patron saint of the city, and the domed structures of the Dubrovnik Cathedral and Bell Tower. The Bell Tower was constructed in 1444 as a symbol of the free state of Ragusa. Another important landmark is Onofrio's fountain, constructed in 1438 at the completion of the city's aqueducts. The Renaissance Sponza Palace is yet another landmark of the Old Town. For a break from all the history, you may enjoy a walk down the limestone-paved Stradun and add some shopping and dining to your day in town.
It's clear that a single day in Dubrovnik offers so much to see and absorb, so it's a great idea to arrange for a local guide to help you move smoothly from place to place and make the most of your time with a personalized tour.
2 Day (Weekend Trip)
For a two-day visit to Dubrovnik, you can more comfortably fit in all the sightseeing activities from the one-day trip suggestions above. In addition to that, there are two recommendations we'd like to make for travelers with that extra day.
First, fans of the fantasy drama Game of Thrones will be delighted to know that they can arrange for tours of the filming locations around town. This is also possible for a one-day trip of course, and Game of Thrones fans may want to spend their day doing just that. However for the two-day visitor, things get a little easier timewise, and a tour of the filming locations will offer you a different perspective of the city even if you are not familiar with the TV program. Many of these locations will already be must-see locations on any visit to the Old Town, so a Game of Thrones tour can easily be part of your plan, and a private guide can get you to filming locations and offer background information about the location's relevance to Dubrovnik's past as well.
The second recommendation for a two-day visit is to take the cable car up Srd, the 412-meter high mountain behind Dubrovnik. From the cable car and Dubrava Observation Point on the mountain you will have a fantastic view looking down upon the city with the panorama of the Adriatic Sea spreading out beyond. If you haven't had enough history lessons yet, you can visit the historic defensive structure of the Fort Imperial, built in 1810 during the Napoleonic Wars. The museum commemorates the Siege of Dubrovnik, one of the fiercest battles fought during the Croatian War of Independence. Be sure to take in the views from the restaurant atop Srd as you unwind with a drink or a meal.
5 Day (Week-long) trip
The traveler with at least five days to spend in Dubrovnik has it made. All the activities mentioned above can be enjoyed either in two jam-packed days or stretched out over a leisurely three days.
A popular activity in Dubrovnik is kayaking on the Adriatic Sea. Paddle your way below the rocky cliffs and gaze up at the ramparts rising above. Marvel at the view of Lovrijenac Fortress atop a high cliff at the Dubrovnik West Harbor. For the more intrepid, it's possible to arrange for a kayaking tour over to Lokrum Island. A popular tour includes a rest at Betina Cave, a natural amphitheater in the rocks with a pebbly beach. Here, the courageous can try cliff diving as well.
Having the luxury of time means there's room to enjoy a trip down the coast to picturesque Montenegro or visit the historic city of Mostar in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The Dervish Monastery of Blagaj Tekke sits in an incredible location below a vertical cliff next to a river flowing out of a cave. If you are interested in more spectacular natural scenery, then be sure to visit the Kravice Waterfalls where over a dozen white cascades tumble over a rocky precipice lined with green trees. It's a sight to behold!
All of these locations are accessible with day trips from Dubrovnik and some locations can be paired up on a single trip. The best thing to do is to contact one of our experienced private guides and find out how to make the most rewarding experience out of your trip.
Visiting Dubrovnik for just a day or two will still keep travelers occupied with many of the city's landmarks and classic sightseeing places. Obviously, a two-day visit gives a little more time to see more or take time to enjoy the sightseeing locations and shops and restaurants a little bit more. A well-arranged tour with a knowledgeable guide can help make your visit to Dubrovnik your ideal one. If you have the time, spending a few days in and around Dubrovnik will give you the chance to learn more about the history and enjoy more of the scenery. It's a fascinating part of Europe and you'll surely want to take in as much as you can. Why not consult with one of our guides now and get a plan started for your incredible visit to Dunrovnik!
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