A Unesco World Heritage listed site, it is made up of cobblestone streets, forts and museums. Despite being bombed heavily by Yugoslav forces in 1991, the city has been well preserved and is Croatia’s prime tourist destination.
Interested? You should be. And it’s getting close to one of the best times of year to go. Why? Here are five good reasons.
We’ll see you there…
1. There’s plenty of sun!
Not ready to wave cheerio to summer just yet? Luckily you don’t have to. Croatia’s dose of sun lasts longer than ours and Dubrovnik is the perfect place to enjoy an extended summer season. While the temperatures might not be as sweltering as they are during the months of July and August, the days do get up to the mid 20s (Celsius); just perfect for me to top up the old tan. Spoilt with pristine natural scenery, an ancient walled town and a very warm Adriatic (the sea in October maintains August temperatures), your days could be spent swimming, exploring and sipping sundowners at the Buza Bar, a bar hewn out of the cliffs (the name means ‘hole’), which is a famous Dubrovnik spot where everyone’s welcomed as a local, come dusk.
2. Ticket prices are much cheaper
Dubrovnik doesn’t claim to be a budget destination. It’s a fairly pricey holiday to plan though you realise the money spent is well worth it as you peak at the turquoise waters through your window when you’re coming in to land. But a little sensible spending is a good thing. Getting to Dubrovnik in October though is up to 60% cheaper than booking a ticket for the peak summer months! That’s no idle boast. We compared a four night/five day trip from a Wednesday to Sunday in August and a trip of the same duration in October and were astounded at the savings. We also checked three airlines (EasyJet, British Airways and Germanwings) and all three came back with substantial discounts.
3. The accommodation is cheaper too!
You’d have your work cut out for you if you wanted to spend time in Dubrovnik in the summer but left booking hotel accommodation ‘til the last minute. It goes quickly. Come early autumn though, the crowds disperse and the hotels make their rooms available at reduced rates. Whereas before you’d book a double room, you’re now able to afford a suite for the same rate. A lot of the hotels come with breakfast included in the nightly rate, which keeps costs down to a manageable level too.
4. Plenty of things to do
Banje Beach is the famous Croatian beach that appears in all the postcards. It is a lovely beach, and won’t be crowded. There are other beaches to explore too, with Cavtat and Plat close by (you’ll need to call a taxi or hire a car or motorbike to get to them). Just be forewarned, both Cavtat and Plat are naturist beaches so bathers can go naked should they wish. Mljet Island is also close enough for a visit. Dubrovnik houses 17 cathedrals and a synagogue within its walls and a walk through the town reveals stunning architecture. There are also lovely craft shops to visit and I can pick up the clothing item the country is known for, a cravat. All this vacation activity and fresh sea air will lead to a healthy appetite for sure…
Dubrovnik’s cuisine has a noticeable Italian influence: risotto and pizza are local favourites, while olive oil and garlic feature heavily. Mea Culpa is a pizzeria in the Old Town where patrons are seated in the cobbled alleys and the size of the pizzas is legendary. Thanks to its location, the seafood is also unbeatable and one of the best places in town is Proto, which once hosted Wallis Simpson and Edward VIII. Croats love their ice cream too and Dubrovnik isn’t short of ice-creameries –word on the street is that Dubrovnik’s ice cream offering gives Rome’s a run for its money – so make sure you leave from for dessert.
PS., If you like beer, get used to saying “pivo”. Try Croatian beers Zlatorog or Ožujsko, which aren’t too bitter and are usually served on tap.
Images via Getty