Dubrovnik is fairly known as “the pearl of the Adriatic“. The city is surrounded by crystaline turquoise blue water and the old town and its buildings are absolutely beautiful. Unfortunately the city is crowded with tourists during the day and even at night during the high season. This is definitely not a destination for broke backpackers because everything is expensive : accommodation, food and sightseeing. Allow one day to visit the old town peacefully and one more day if you want to do activities or enjoy the beach.
The old town is absolutely beautiful. Take an hour to stroll around the old city ramparts and take beautiful pictures. Climb on the ramparts of the city will cost you roughly 11 € , but it’s definitely worth it! Prefer the morning to visit otherwise you may end up with the whole mass of tourists and stifling heat. Sometimes when there are too many people they will not let you enter. The best time to visit the old city is in the morning or at sunrise, when many of the tourists have not yet arrived.
Activities to do in Dubrovnik
- It is possible to make a kayak tour around the island.
- You can also relax in one of the nearby beaches.
The nightlife in Dubrovnik
There are many backpackers who go out at night, but it is a very young crowd getting drunk in one famous club (unfortunately we can not remember the name of this club, we did not go there).
Otherwise, we felt like there were not so many people on the terraces of cafes in the evening, it’s pretty quiet…
Where to eat in Dubrovnik ?
We recommend the restaurant Taj Mahal in the old town. Despite its name this restaurant serves bosnian dishes. It is very crowded so you should better book ahead. They have outdoor seats. Their address : Nikole Gucetica 2 | Iva Vojnovica 14
The restaurants are much more expensive than in other cities of the Balkans. The prices are similar to the western European prices.
Where to sleep for cheap in Dubrovnik ? The Guest Houses
Hostels are super expensive in the city, it will cost you at least 35-40 € for one night, and you’re not even in the old town. We preferred to book a more affordable Guest House which cost us about 20 € for one night. It was about a 20 min walk from the old town. There are many guesthouses in Dubrovnik, you will not have trouble finding one ! Dubrovnik is very hilly and you will certainly have to climb stairs to get to your accommodation.
How to get to Dubrovnik from Montenegro ?
There are buses from the cities of Budva , Kotor and Herceg Novi. Expect around 3 hours from Budva, 2h30 from Kotor and 1h30 from Herceg Novi .
Kotor to Dubrovnik route will cost you 20 € (+ 1 € for the bag) , Herceg Novi € 15 (+ 1 € for the bag). Arguably this is the most expensive route we have done in the Balkans. And in addition it was 1 hour late! From Herceg Novi , there are 2 buses a day : in the morning at about 9am and in the afternoon at 3:40 p.m. . From Kotor, there are 3-4 buses per day (7:10 , 8:30, 2:45 p.m. and another at 4 or 5 pm).
We had tried hitch-hiking but it was very difficult and inconclusive, maybe because we were just next to the bus station. We have made Kotor to Herceg Novi by hitch-hiking, and after two hour wait in Herceg Novi we finally gave up and waited for the bus.
Go to Mostar from Dubrovnik ?
If you are hitchhiking from Dubrovnik, take the direction of Split. It’s very easy to get a ride to other cities along the coast such as Split because many vehicles are doing the same journey. The hardest part is to reach the main road to start hitch-hiking because it is located on top of the old town and there are many stairs to climb !
Otherwise, there are several daily buses. You will need 3 to 4 hours to make the connection. Departure times of buses are 8 am , 1pm, 3:15 p.m and 5:15 p.m.