What to do in Dubrovnik Old Town? We made you a list of must-see attractions, events, and things to do in Dubrovnik.
This is the only travel guide to the Old Town in Dubrovnik you’ll ever need and is written by real locals!
We’ll reveal you a lot of useful tips and information and tell you all you need to know before you go.
Dubrovnik’s UNESCO-protected Old Town is full of history and adventure – if you know where to look and who knows better than people who are born and raised here (that’d be us).
Let’s get started!
1. Walk The Walls Of Dubrovnik
You just can’t come to Dubrovnik without walking its walls!
The first thing we recommend you do is to climb the city walls. Why?
Because being up on the walls helps you to see where everything is. You will be able to orientate yourself better when you see the entire Old Town with all its streets from the above.
The view from the walls is stunning! Azur Adriatic Sea, cute nearby islands, red rooftops, forts and towers… Be sure to have enough space on your camera!
Tips for walking the city walls:
- Ticket purchase: There are 3 entrances to the walls of Dubrovnik: main entrance – just across the Onofrio’s Fountain, the large fountain that can be seen upon entering the Old City via the Pile Gate, entrance close to the Dominican Monastery, and entrance close to the Maritime Museum at the Fort of St. John. You can buy tickets in any of the entrances.
If you don’t want to walk the entire length of the city walls, you can end the tour at any of these entrance points.
- Price: Adults ticket costs 150 HRK, children’s ticket (5-18 years) costs 50 HRK, children (5 and under) can go for free. CASH ONLY, despite what the entrance sign says. Student discount exists, you must have your student id with you.
- Do not throw your ticket away! They check it halfway through, and if you want to visit Lovrijenac Fortress or do Game of Thrones tour you can use it for free entrance to the fortress since the walls ticket also includes Lovrijenac Fortress(50 HRK if purchased separately),
- Best time to go: Go as early in the morning or as late in the afternoon to avoid the crowds from the cruise ships and heat.
- How much time to spend: 1,5 hours is the average time you will need and it should be enough to see everything.
- Bring bottles of water: There are a few kiosks and cafes on the walls, but they’re expensive. You can refill your bottles at any fountain in the old town since anywhere in Croatia water is perfectly safe to drink.
- Wear a hat and apply sunscreen. There is no shade at the walls.
- The „closing time“indicates when the walls shut down, not the last entry.
You can explore the walls of Dubrovnik on your own or you can join a walking tour with a professional licensed guide who will reveal you impressive stories about how the walls protected the city of Dubrovnik from its powerful enemies for centuries.
Check out Dubrovnik City Walls Walking Tour.
2. Get Lost In The Old Town
Enjoy the atmosphere of this ancient place.
Before visiting any particular Old Town attraction, just go ahead and wander the countless little streets and alleyways.
Spend as much time and walk every street because nothing is the same. All streets are unique and picturesque.
The moment you enter the town you will fall in love with it. The white buildings and the narrow streets take you back in time, you will feel like you are in a medieval city from the fairy tales.
You will see why so many people travel there. This type of beauty no longer exists in the structures built today. You have to experience it, to know how it is.
There aren’t any cars allowed inside of the walls so that the whole part of the city is pedestrian-only.
Ignore the crowds (which there are!) and just enjoy your vacation.
If you are Game of Thrones fan, you will recognize a lot of places where the show was filmed. Walk of Shame stairs is definitely the most popular one.
Ancient Old Town has a lot of interesting stories to tell but they can’t be found on Google! The best way to discover them is with a local guide.
You can book Dubrovnik Old Town Walking Tour here. You won’t be disappointed.
3. A Walk Along The Stradun (The Main Street)
A famous walk along shiny marble street with an ice cream in hand!
Take a walk along the main promenade from which you easily navigate around the town.
The famed Dubrovnik Stradun, officially known as Placa, is the favorite walking area for all the people of Dubrovnik, especially the young.
Strolling along here gives a good introduction to the city, and walking up and down with ice cream on hand it’s a lot of fun, even if it is very crowded.
Stradun used to be a channel that divided the small islands on which Dubrovnik was built from the mainland. Later on, the channel was filled to create the main town’s street.
Like the rest of Dubrovnik, the street’s original buildings were almost entirely destroyed during the 1667 earthquake. All the buildings were rebuilt to a uniform height and nearly identical facades with similar layouts having the shops on the ground floor.
Fun fact: Unlike other cities, the buildings inside the Old Town are forbidden to have ornate shop fronts, any kind of advertising like posters is forbidden. The shutters and fronts are then all uniquely the same, adding to the sense of symmetry.
The prices on Stradun are relatively high, so for more affordable options, head down the streets branching off the Stradun.
4. Game Of Thrones Tour
Welcome to the King’s Landing, the capital of Westeros!
Medieval Dubrovnik served as King’s Landing, the capital of Westeros, probably most known for Cersei Lannister’s “walk of shame.”
The Game of Thrones tour Dubrovnik is one of the best things to do in Dubrovnik even if you are not a fan.
On the Game of Thrones tour, your guide will show you all the locations where the show was filmed including Red Keep, Walk of Shame stairs, Docks of King’s Landing, Littlefinger’s Brothel, Sept of Baelor, Farmers’ Market, Spice King’s Palace in Qarth, the setting of the Purple Wedding, as well as many other locations.
You can even do your own walk of shame (or not)! There is a penalty for walking shirtless in the Old Town in the amount of 1000 HRK. If you think it’s worth it, go ahead! We won’t stop you.
Visiting King’s Landing and not doing Game of Thrones tour Dubrovnik would be such a Shame! Shame! Shame!
You can book Game Of Thrones Tour Dubrovnik here. We highly recommend it. Some of the guides worked as extras on Game of Thrones so you will get an opportunity to hear behind the scenes stories that can’t be found on Google. The guide will have a book with the screenshots from the show to remind you of the specific scenes, and you can compare them with real locations.
But don’t wait too much because winter is coming…
5. Stand On The Stone Head
Find your luck by climbing the face that grants wishes.
There’s a fun activity that visitors like to try. Across the Onofrio’s fountain, in front of the wall of the Franciscan Monastery stands a strange gargoyle head, half a meter above the ground, sticking out few centimeters.
You may see people trying to climb onto it and stay balanced, which is harder than it looks!
Legend says that face waits and listens. If you manage to stand on it and take your shirt off while facing the wall, without falling, your wish will be granted!
Is it a myth or not we do not know, but it’s definitely worth a try.
If you look closer at the wall you’ll see a trace from the touch of thousands of bodies.
Can you climb this stone? We dare you!
6. Watch The Sunset From The Cliff Bar
Have a cold drink at a bar with the most beautiful view
Cliffs bars are one of the top things to do in Dubrovnik.
Dubrovnik is home to many special moments, and one of the best is enjoying a drink at the seaside of the city walls.
Buža 1 and Buža 2 are two bars situated on the outside of the city walls, right on the cliffs.
Literally, Buža means ‘hole in the wall‘.
The cliff bars are a unique experience and yet, tourist brochures still neglect to mention them.
Buža’s a perfect spot for beautiful views and seaside drinks, swimming, sunbathing and even cliff jumping for some of you adrenaline seekers out there. For your safety, we recommend you to just look at other people doing it.
How to find Buža bar:
Part of the fun is finding the bar as it isn’t on many maps. But there is a little help to guide you through the cobblestone streets of the Old City. Simply follow the signs that read “Cold drinks with the most beautiful view”.
What do you think, is this the bar with the best view in the world or have you seen something better?
7. Taste Traditional Local food
Dubrovnik cuisine is typical Mediterranean cuisine known for seafood, fresh fish, olive oil, locally grown vegetables and fruits, homegrown herbs, and it’s considered a healthy way of eating.
Don’t leave Dubrovnik without trying local specialties like black risotto (cuttlefish ink risotto), buzara (stewed mussels), brudet (fish stew), octopus salad, lamb peka (dishes under the bell), pašticada (a beef and gnocchi dish), and many others.
For all the dessert lovers, rozata, creamy caramel pudding similar to crème brûlée is a must.
All of these dishes will make your mouth water. You can thank us later.
Check out an entire article of Top Food To Try In Dubrovnik here.
8. Porporela Pier
Escape the crowds inside the city walls.
Porporela is pier and breakwater in Dubrovnik’s old harbor built in the old times to reduce the intensity of waves, reduce erosion and protect boats and ships anchored in the harbor.
Porporela is the most romantic place in the old town where lovers finish their promenade through the city and a place where young lovers come for their first kiss.
Porporela can be a very solitary place and is perfect if you want to get away from the crowds. You can relax on the bench listening to the sound of the waves and seagulls and enjoy the beautiful view of the sea, Lokrum Island and boats passing by.
9. Green Market
This old town open-air market is a trip back in time!
Situated in the Old Town at Gundulić square, this is the only open-market inside the Old Town and it’s a nice strolling experience.
It has all kinds of vegetables, fresh fruits, homemade cheese and milk, homemade rakija, šljiva, a variety of homemade liquors.
You’ll find stuff made by locals, like arancini (candied bitter orange peel), lavender oils and bags for closets, dried figs, candied almonds, handcrafted souvenirs or lace and palm-tree figures.
Great gifts for the home!
At noon, you can witness a special attraction: Just before noon, as church bells ring, pigeons will rush at the market behind the statue of Ivan Gundulić, as one of the locals will start feeding them. Prepare your cameras, because this happens only once a day!
The market operates from 8:00 to 13:00 every day (fruits and vegetables), and souvenirs sellers until 18:00 except Sunday.
10. Onofrio’s Fountain
Stop for a refreshing drink and refill your bottle at Onofrio’s fountain.
Once inside the Old Town from the Pile Gate, you will see the Onofrio’s Fountain on your right. This 15th-century large water fountain still supplies fresh drinking water!
During the Middle Ages, the city had a complex aqueduct system that brought water from the mountains 12 kilometers away. The water ended up here as it was the largest fountain and then was routed through the rest of the city. This water supply was one of the reasons that Dubrovnik could resist sieges a number of times throughout history.
Today this fountain is a popular meeting point for locals and tourists. The fountain water is safe for drinking, so it is an ideal spot to fill up your bottle.
11. Dubrovnik Summer Festival
The Dubrovnik Summer Festival is one of the most prestigious cultural manifestations, not only in Dubrovnik but in all of Croatia. It is instituted in 1950 and is held every year between 10 July and 25 August.
A rich program of classical music, theater, opera and dance performances is taking place under the open sky in fortresses, squares, and streets of Dubrovnik. The whole of the city is transformed into a stage.
Don’t miss the opportunity to attend a klapa performance − a type of unaccompanied Dalmatian singing.
Admission: ticket prices vary depending on the performance, venue and seating position.
You can check the official program and get tickets at the Dubrovnik Festival official website: Dubrovnik-Festival.
12. Franciscan Monastery
Visit the oldest pharmacy in Europe.
The Franciscan monastery is situated at the beginning of Stradun, to the left of the Inner Pile Gate, next to the Holy Savior Church.
It holds the oldest pharmacy in Europe, operating since 1931.
This monastery is very photogenic, you will have many pictures.
The entry is 30 HRK. Open 9-18 in the summer season and 9-17 in winter.
Fun fact: The citizens build monastery next to the entrances to the City for defense purposes. In case an enemy managed to enter the City, then the monks would be the first to defend it because they were unmarried and therefore had no wives and children to protect.
13. Rector’s Palace
15th-century Gothic-Renaissance palace that survived being blown up, fire and earthquake.
In the Middle Ages, the Republic of Dubrovnik was ruled by a rector who was elected by the nobility. To prevent anyone from becoming too powerful the rector’s term was restricted to one month. During his term, the rector lived in his palace and was unable to leave the building without the permission of the Senate.
Rector’s Palace housed the rector’s office, his private chambers, public halls, administrative offices, dungeon and a gunpowder store.
14. St. Blaise’s Church
Dubrovnik‘s most beloved church.
The Saint Blaise’s Church is dedicated to the patron saint of Dubrovnik. Legend says that a thousand years ago St. Blaise appeared to a local priest in a dream and told him that the up-and-coming Venetians would attack the city soon. The priest warned the authorities, who could then prepare for war. This prediction did, in fact, come true. St Blaise became the symbol of the city and the locals have resented Venetians since then!
St. Blaise’s church is one of the favorite wedding ceremony churches in Dubrovnik. The rich Baroque decoration inside the church offers an amazing photoshoot.
15. Sponza Palace
Admire the architecture of this 16th-century palace, one of the most beautiful palaces in Dubrovnik.
Sponza Palace was originally a customs house and storage, then a Republic’s mint and armory, a state treasury and a bank. Today is home to Dubrovnik National Archive.
Sponza is one of the few buildings in the Old Town to survive the Great Earthquake of 1667, and it’s s rare example of the Gothic-Renaissance style in Dubrovnik.
It is located at the end of the Stradun, across St. Blaise’s Church.
16. Orlando’s Column
An ancient knight and a symbol of the city’s freedom.
At the end of the Stradun, in front of the Bell Tower, you will find famous Orlando’s Column.
The column is important in many ways:
- The town announcer would come to the column to announce important news and decisions, and which step he stood on would indicate how important the news was—the higher the step, the more important the news.
- The column was also used as a pillory, where people were publicly punished.
- The column had the city’s standard measurement: the thin line on the top step is exactly as long as the statue’s forearm, so the standard measurement was not afoot, but an “elbow”.
17. Bonbonnière Kraš
Traditional Croatian sweets you need to try
Located on Stradun, Dubrovnik’s main street, Bonbonnière Kraš is one of the most famous brands in Croatia. A heaven for all the dessert lovers.
If you’re looking for an authentically Croatian sweet to take home, search no more than Bajadera nougats.
Ideal gifts for everyone. Just try not to eat everything before you get back home.
This was a guide of what to do in Dubrovnik Old Town if you want a detailed guide on Things to do in Dubrovnik check this one.
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