dubrovnik holiday guide
Within almost 2,000 metres of stone wall built to protect its treasures sits one of the world’s most stunning cities – a place where an abundance of history, museums bursting with art, baroque architecture and marble streets full of interest prevail. There are some places that charm, while others leave a lasting impression. A Dubrovnik holiday is firmly the latter, making it no surprise the returning visitor is left as enchanted as the first-timer while, all around, a distinctive Mediterranean lifestyle and the sparkling Adriatic provide an ever-present backdrop.
From shingle to sand to backdrops of coastal mountain ranges and an enjoyable café culture, a Dubrovnik holiday offers plenty of beachside distractions away from the treasures of the city. Closest to the Old Town, Banje – with views across to the island of Lokrum - is beloved of locals; Copacabana is a great place to hang-out and people watch, and the boulder-laden Danče (close to the Lovrijenac fortress) will appeal to those drawn to a more rugged coastline. From your villa in Dubrovnik, Lapad is one of the safest and most popular beaches with families, and Sveti Jakov is a small stretch of pebble at the base of a cliff but with a west-facing location rewarded by plenty of afternoon and early evening sun as well as lovely views of the Old Town.
Eating and drinking
From the signature dish of manistra na pome (pasta in tomato sauce) to excellent fish, hearty stews and an abundance of fresh ingredients, good eating is key to a Croatian holiday. The Italian influence is evident along the coastline but Eastern European culinary traditions hold strong. In Dubrovnik there’s plenty of choice, from Proto (Novak Djokovic has been seen sampling its excellent Dalmatian seafood) to Orsan (with a marina setting and eclectic menu) and Kopun (with its signature Croatian dishes) to street food, Bosnian specialities, pizzeria, starched-white tablecloth formality complete with panoramic views, and fusion delights, it’s safe to say the foodie really shouldn’t be left disappointed during their trip to Dubrovnik.
Things to do
It’s within the old town you’ll truly get you a feeling of being immersed in Dubrovnik’s exquisite beauty, amazingly well preserved heritage and unique culture, but a hop on the city’s revamped cable car will see you enchanted by spectacular views from atop Mount Srđ. Elsewhere, the Cathedral of the Assumption and Rector’s Palace will top the list of any culture vulture while the more active will be enticed by opportunities for sea kayaking and snorkelling. And any Game of Thrones fan will surely find a locations walking tour irresistible.
Eighteen miles from the city on Mljet island, a national park is well served by ferries and hydrofoil and is an area of real beauty with panoramic coastal views, many of which feature picturesque islets, rocks and cliffs while - within the park (which covers a third of the island) - are lush forests, a unique system of lakes, a Roman palace dating back to the third century and a 12th century Benedictine monastery surrounded by a cloistered garden and rich vegetation. This area really is a gem and with opportunities for kayaking, swimming and lovely walks and where you can simply be at one with nature or as active as you like during your holiday in Croatia.