Croatia Dubrovnik Europe

How NOT to Do Dubrovnik

August 19, 2016
Avoid disaster in Dubrovnik

Our recent trip to Dubrovnik wasn’t quite what we expected; we fell in love with the city itself but we encountered a few unexpected challenges during our time in the walled city.  So you don’t make the mistakes we did, we’ve put together the following guide for you.  Here we go…

Don’t visit Dubrovnik during August if you can avoid it.  You’ll spend most of your day battling crowds of tourists which isn’t much fun at the best of times, especially in the summer heat and in such close quarters. 

Do head to the walled city towards the end of September; this was recommended to us as the best time to visit.  At this time, the tourists are, for the most part, gone, temperatures are lower but still pleasant and the ocean is still warm after the blazing summer.

Don’t leave walking the city walls until the middle of the day – they’ll be crowded and there’s no shade once you to the top.

Do try to make it up the wall early in the day.  The midday/afternoon sun is unforgiving so going up before the heat of the day will allow you to walk around and admire the spectacular views in comfort (and you may even get a photo or two unobstructed by other travellers!)

Don’t jump straight into a taxi or onto the cable car without weighing up your options – a tour may be a better choice.

Do consider joining an Eco Tuk Tour outing up Mt Srdj.  Put the money you would have spent on the cable car or taxi towards the tour and enjoy seeing Dubrovnik like a local.  You’ll hear the most amazing stories of what life was like in the area during the civil war and will learn lots about the origins of this beautiful city (plus you’ll get to visit a number of spots around Dubrovnik in style). 

Our guide, John, also recommended catching the boat over to the island of Lokrum ( for 100 kuna each, return) to spend the day swimming and hiking – and though we decided to head over to Montenegro instead, it sure did look gorgeous over on the island. 

Don’t relegate Bosnia or Montenegro to being a day trip from Dubrovnik; both countries are amazing and deserve more time than that if possible.

Do book yourself some time overnighting in these countries if you can wangle it.  We had two nights in Kotor, Montenegro and two nights respectively in Mostar and Sarajevo (Bosnia and Herzegovina) – even with six nights, we’ve left with a taste of each beautiful country but a desire to come back and explore.  Given the chance, we’d love to see Bosnia in the wintertime and explore the bays of Montenegro at our own pace.

Don’t wait until the last minute to book accommodation in peak season.  August is the busiest time for the walled city and visitors flock to it – we learnt the hard way that prices only go up.

Do plan ahead and lock your Dubrovnik accommodation in.  The idea of seeing where the wind takes you might sound romantic but chances are, it will come back to bite you!

However, if you do end up arriving in town without accommodation…

Don’t stay at Ana’s Hostel, especially not in their overflow rooms at Stella’s.  Having been charged the equivalent of €60 each (that’s €120 or NZD180 between us!) we were given a bunk each in a shared dorm (thankfully nobody else was silly enough to pay that so at least it ended up being private) with a broken shower and cold water.  Outside our window, a bar played music so loudly that I didn’t manage to sleep until 2.30am when it was eventually turned off.  We tried talking politely with the owner in the morning just to be yelled at – not impressed!

Do pick up a room from one of the ladies at the bus stop.  We’d been told that we’d be able to pick up a reasonably priced room from someone holding a sign at the station but when the old lady barely spoke a word of English, was struggling to walk (and would have to walk us to our room which would be a fair way away) and didn’t have any photographs of the room, we got spooked.  What a mistake this was!  We were told later that the old ladies generally offer rooms that are of reasonable quality and at a fair price; we instantly regretted our decision to head to old town.

…but whatever you do

Don’t miss Dubrovnik!  It is one of the most beautiful old towns we’ve ever seen and absolutely gorgeous sitting against the crystal clear water, protected by its towering city walls.

Use our tips to help ensure you have the an amazing time in Dubrovnik!

Do you have any helpful tips to share?  If so, we’d love to hear from you…

Facebook Comments
Europe Lake Bled Slovenia

Lake Bled: The Star of Slovenia

Lake Bled has become an icon, synonymous with Slovenia, for good reason – it is absolutely breathtaking. The crystal clear waters are surprisingly warm in July and the mountains that surround the lake and the lush forest around it, frame it perfectly. How Do…

August 15, 2016
Canyoning Croatia
Croatia Europe Split

Making a Splash – Canyoning in Croatia

We’ve been fortunate to try our hand at a range of activities (both on this trip and in years gone by) but few compare to the canyoning adventure we were treated to yesterday with Iris Adventures. Canyoning is not only a physical challenge but…

August 12, 2016
Bela Krajina Europe Slovenia

Drifting Down the Kolpa: Canoeing in Slovenia

As the second greenest country within Europe, Slovenia is home to some of the most striking natural beauty found anywhere in the region.  Pristine rivers, crystal clear lakes, natural springs, rich farmland and untouched forests; Slovenia is a nature-lover’s paradise.  Even better, is the Kolpa…

August 5, 2016
Cinque Terre Europe Italy

Your Guide to Cinque Terre, Italy

Cinque Terre; hard to say and even harder to forget (which is saying a lot as I’m still not really sure how to pronounce it properly!) Having seen countless photographs online, I couldn’t help but wonder if it could possibly live up to the…

July 30, 2016
Capri Europe Italy

Captivating Capri

Just off the coast of Western Italy, lays the island of Capri. This small island plays host to the rich and famous alongside your average holiday maker looking to enjoy the Italian sun. Capri Highlights This beautiful island has a number of attractions, all…

July 27, 2016
Europe Florence Italy

48 Hours in Florence, Italy

In the lead-up to our big summer Europe trip I’d done lots of research regarding how we might spend our time in certain areas but didn’t make it to planning our visit to Florence (outside of accommodation and transport in/out) – we ran out of time…

July 25, 2016