overhead shot of Stradun in Dubrovnik

How to Make the Most of One Day in Dubrovnik

If you only have one day in Dubrovnik, you might wonder how to see and do everything the stunning Adriatic city has to offer. Never fear; we’ve got you covered. In this guide, we’ll show you how to make the most of your day in Dubrovnik, from morning to night.

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Morning: Explore the City Walls and the Old Town

The best way to start your day in Dubrovnik is to walk along the famous City Walls, which surround the Old Town and offer amazing views of the sea, the Old Town rooftops, and the fortresses. The walls are over 2 kilometres long and date back to the 10th century.

You can access the walls via the Pile Gate or the Ploče Gate, but be prepared to pay an admission fee of about 27 euros. The walk takes about 2 hours, depending on how many stops you make for photos.

You’re free to explore the City Walls independently, although guided tours are an extremely popular option. We recommend selecting a tour that also covers the Old Town, although themed tours are popular. You can choose from a variety of tours, including military history tours or Game of Thrones tours (many scenes from the show were filmed in Dubrovnik). Check out our article Dubrovnik Walking Tours: Types and Tips for more information.

Following your walk around the City Walls, you should head to the Old Town, the heart and soul of Dubrovnik. The Old Town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, full of charming streets, squares, churches, and museums. If you choose to explore it via guided tour, you’ll get to learn about the history and culture of the following highlights and landmarks:

  • Stradun, the main street of the Old Town, lined with cafes, shops, and monuments.
  • Onofrio’s Fountain, a 15th-century fountain that provides drinking water to the locals and visitors.
  • Orlando’s Column, a stone pillar that symbolises the freedom and independence of Dubrovnik.
  • Dubrovnik Cathedral, a baroque church that contains a treasury of relics and paintings.
  • Sponza Palace, a Gothic-Renaissance building that houses the city archives and a memorial room for the victims of the Croatian War of Independence.
  • Franciscan Monastery, a 14th-century monastery that features a cloister, a pharmacy, and a library.
  • Rector’s Palace, a former residence of the rulers of Dubrovnik, now a museum of the city’s history and art.

Lunch

After exploring the Old Town, you’ll probably be hungry and thirsty. Luckily, Dubrovnik has plenty of options for lunch, from traditional Croatian dishes to international cuisine.

You can find restaurants and taverns in the Old Town, or venture outside the walls to the nearby beaches and harbours. Some of the local specialties you should try are:

  • Black Risotto, a rice dish cooked with squid ink and seafood.
  • Peka, a meat and vegetable dish baked under a metal dome in a fireplace.
  • Octopus salad, a refreshing salad of octopus, potatoes, onions, and parsley.
  • Rozata, a custard dessert similar to crème brûlée flavoured with caramel and rose liqueur or brandy.

Given Dubrovnik’s position on the coast, you can expect lots of fresh seafood like oysters and grilled fish. Culinary staples like pasta and pizza are also widely available.

If you’re not sure where to start, you could go on a food tour. Get Your Guide‘s options include food tours of the Old Town, wine tours and even traditional Croatian cooking classes.

Afternoon: Continuing your Exploration of the Old Town

After lunch, you can continue your day in Dubrovnik by visiting more attractions in the Old Town. Stradun, the main street, is a great place to buy souvenirs, although by visiting shops on the side streets you’ll probably save a few euros.

You can also visit some of the museums and galleries that showcase the rich heritage and culture of Dubrovnik, such as:

  • War Photo Limited, a gallery that displays powerful images of war and conflict from around the world.
  • Museum of Modern Art Dubrovnik (MOMAD), a museum that exhibits works by Croatian and international artists from the 20th and 21st centuries.
  • Maritime Museum, a museum that tells the story of Dubrovnik’s naval history and trade.
  • Rupe Ethnographic Museum, a museum that showcases the traditional costumes, crafts, and customs of the region.
  • Indian Motorcycle Museum Dubrovnik, which boasts one of the biggest collections of Indian motorcycles in the world.
  • Museum Of Selfies & Memories, which provides plenty of selfie opportunities as well as interactive exhibits.

Late Afternoon: Hike up Mount Srđ

If you still have some energy left, you can end your one day in Dubrovnik by hiking up Mount Srđ, the hill that overlooks the city. The hike takes about an hour and a half, with the trail starting near the cable car station. You can also take the cable car if you prefer, but the hike is more rewarding (not to mention cheaper).

Once you reach the top, you’ll be rewarded with breathtaking views of Dubrovnik and the surrounding islands. You can also visit the Imperial Fort, a 19th-century fortress that houses the Homeland War Museum. The museum is dedicated to the Siege of Dubrovnik, a 1991-1992 battle that devastated the city.

Evening

The perfect way to end your one day in Dubrovnik is to enjoy a dinner cruise on the Adriatic Sea. You can book a cruise that will take you around the city walls, the island of Lokrum, and the Elaphiti Islands.

You’ll enjoy a delicious meal of local delicacies, often accompanied by live music and entertainment. You’ll also witness a stunning sunset and get to see the city lights sparkle in the dark.

The previously mentioned Get Your Guide is a good place to book a dinner cruise. If you’d prefer to keep your feet on dry land, you’re sure to have come across many restaurants during your time exploring the Old Town. However, if you visit Dubrovnik during peak season (June- August) make sure to make a reservation.

Conclusion

Dubrovnik is a city that has something for everyone, from history and culture to nature and adventure. Even if you only have one day in Dubrovnik, you can still see and do a lot, as long as you plan ahead and prioritise your interests.

We hope this guide has helped/will help you make the most of your one day in Dubrovnik, and that you’ll come back for more. You should also check out our article Your Ultimate Guide to Planning a Trip to Dubrovnik for more useful tips.

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