Dubrovnik is the most visited city in Croatia and super famous thanks to Game of Thrones. This beautiful medieval old town which is also a UNESCO world heritage site has a stunning landscape and is extremely popular with tourists/cruise ships in the summer months. All the classic positive adjectives (read: spectacular, gorgeous, stunning, magnificent, breath-taking etc.) that you often read in travel articles apply to Dubrovnik.
We spent over 3 days exploring the city walls, doing a couple of walking tours, relaxing by the beaches, watching magical sunsets, exploring nearby islands and enjoying the cliff bars in Dubrovnik.
Our top 10 recommendations:
1. Take a Walk around the City walls :
With beautiful viewpoints from pretty much any spot on the walls – this is one tourist attraction you cannot miss! Constructed between the 13th and 16th century, the city walls enclose the entire old town. It takes about 2 hours to walk the entire length and is a wonderful way to get introduced to this gorgeous city.
Best time to visit – We recommend going in the morning –before the tourists from the cruise ships start coming in. Also, it can get really hot during the afternoon.
2. Stroll the Stradun –
Stradun is Dubrovnik’s main street – this is the widest street in the old town and is lined with souvenir shops, restaurants and bars. The street literally sparkles in the sunlight – that’s how clean and stunningly beautiful it is.
Best time to visit – Since the old town is usually quite crowded – best time to enjoy the street is in the morning (it is usually the quietest then) or after sunset.
3. Do a Game of Thrones Walking tour.
I wasn’t a GoT fan until I binged watched the entire series before the trip – and was so looking forward to this tour. The tour is mostly done by GoT extras and they cover all the main filming locations (King’s Landing, Qarth and Red Keep) in the old town along with some fun stories.
We booked our tour through this link – GoT Tour
4. Explore Old Town and get lost in the numerous alleys.
We started with a walking tour the first day to get familiar with the old town. The route takes you around the Old Town via Onofrio’s Fountain and up Prijeko Street to the Old Port of Dubrovnik. Post the tour, we explored some of the main attractions like Rectors Palace , the famous Bell Tower and the Dubrovnik Cathedral. What we loved was the maze of lanes where one could easily get lost and somehow end up discovering a new alley!
5. Banje Beach
Just east to the old town and a few minutes by walk is this picturesque beach of Dubrovnik. This is perfect to get away from the crowds of Old Town. After all the sightseeing – the Banje beach is great to laze around or take a refreshing swim in the Adriatic sea.
Best time to visit – Evening / an hour before the sunset so that you get enough time to take in the views and enjoy the sun set along the Adriatic sea.
6. Cable Car to Mount Srd.
Mount Srd is over 400 mts above the city and undoubtedly has the best views of Dubrovnik. The cable car departs from a lower station just outside the Old Town. On top, there is a beautiful restaurant where you can enjoy a drink or two.
Best time to visit – Evening / an hour before the sunset so that you get enough time to take in the views and enjoy the sunset along the Adriatic sea.
7. Jump from the Cliff bars
The most famous cliff bar is the Café Buza, situated on the city walls. Finding this place is half the adventure and even though it’s pricey, the view is worth spending the extra money.
8. Visit Lokrum Island
This lush green island is a 15-minute ferry ride away from Dubrovnik. With a botanical garden full of peacocks, an abandoned 11th-century Benedictine monastery and multiple beaches this island is worth visiting. Also, you can climb up to the highest point of the Fort Royal for panoramic views of the Adriatic sea.
Fun Fact : the Benedictine monastery has a mini GoT museum. Also a lot of scenes of Qarth are shot here.
9. Lovrijenac Fort –
This beautiful fort overlooks the City walls and the Lokrum island. Built upon a 37-meter high sheer rock overlooking the sea, the fortress is one of the most impressive locations in Dubrovnik.
Fun Fact : For GoT fans – the fort also doubles as the Red Keep in King’s Landing. Lots of the scenes are filmed at this Fort.
10. View the sunset from Gradac Park –
Since we had already done our share of kayaking in Brela, we weren’t keen for a sunset kayak tour in Dubrovnik and ended up randomly discovering this hidden garden near the old town. This lush pine garden is a great getaway from the crowds and offers a different view of the old town and the sea. You can read a book, relax and drink a beer or just enjoy the stunning sunset views.