2 Days in the Adriatic wonderland - Dubrovnik ,Croatia

Tripoto
26th Jul 2016

 DUBROVNIK - Is it for real ?

Day 1
Photo of Dubrovnik, Croatia by Madovertravel
Photo of Dubrovnik, Croatia by Madovertravel
Photo of Dubrovnik, Croatia by Madovertravel

From Belgium to Croatia

I landed from India in Belgium & from there on headed to Croatia .

A super early morning 6 am flight – Croatian Airways, landed me at this small airport of Dubrovnik.

Dubrovnik Airport + Rental Car Pick-up

A airport just big enough to land a few flights , have a few baggage belts , necessary customs check , tourist information booth & a coffee place to satisfy the bare essential morning hunger pangs .

No wifi access , no option to purchase a tourist sim – it can be a mean landing , in case you plan on doing some last minute bookings or planning on having a prepaid sim to cater to your GPS needs of getting into the city . I got stuck in both those aspects , so make sure you are a little pro-active before you arrive .

The rental cars are outside the arrival terminal , across from the parking . After wasting my time in figuring out how to manage without internet , I finally headed to the Europcar desk , to pick up my thankfully prebooked car .

The person manning it was nice enough to give me a free GPS and his wifi password to help make my first night apartment booking for the city of Dubrovnik.

Tip : Car rental prices can be pretty steep and availability scarce or none at all in peak season , so its advisable to book in advance .

Where to Stay

Depends on how many days you have in hand and what kind of a traveller you are , there are a number of areas to choose from , to make your base in the city .

I will personally recommend – The Old Town - the part of the city which is a must see and also has a lot for one to explore. The 2 limitations of this area are however - scarce & expensive parking and limited number of Hotels ( in case you specifically looking to stay in a hotel hotel per se) .

But having said that , the old town & the immediate neighborhood ( like Brgatska where I Stayed ) is flooded with apartments of various sizes with excellent ratings and even more amazing views of the Adriatic , owned usually by locals .

However keep in mind if you want a view , you will have to be ready to hike up to your apartment , with quite a distance to be covered essentially on foot . In case you are not a bag packer , you will basically be screwed like me ☺ .

Drive to the City

The drive from the airport to the city was simply breathtaking –spanned by mountains on one side and the ocean on the other . The roads are pretty decent , yet typical of any mountain-island drive .

After a 30min maneuver , I was there at my apartment parking , greeted by the owner , guided & familiarized with the apartment , with a balcony opening up to the view of what lay ahead .

From here on began my unforgettable trip of Croatia.

DAY 1 Touring : Half- day

After a long afternoon nap and my car parked for good for the period of my stay , I headed down some hundred of steps to enter through one of the gates into the walled city of Dubrovnik –Old Town . After a quick bite at one of the many bakeries/eateries and fixing my phone with unlimited internet access for 7 days ( T-Mobile ) , I was all set to explore the city .

The old town is bound to leave one awe-struck . The walled city has 3 entry/exit gates ( Gate of Pile , Gate of Ploče & Gate of Buža ) & houses the main street Stradun – with a number of restaurants , pubs , souvenir & lifestyle shops along with a church .

City Walls

Famous Rooftops of Dubrovnik

Photo of Dubrovnik, Croatia by Madovertravel
Photo of Dubrovnik, Croatia by Madovertravel
Photo of Dubrovnik, Croatia by Madovertravel
Photo of Dubrovnik, Croatia by Madovertravel

The first thing I did was buy the tickets for the City-wall , which covers a distance of almost 2 kms surrounding the city. A decent hike , it gives you the best views of the old town , surrounding city harbor , the Fort Lovrijenac , the famous roof-tops , the bell-tower , hidden restaurants and pathways along with of course the Mediterranean sea . I would say almost a perfect 2 hours of discovering & overviewing the city’s offerings .

Attraction Info

During July the walls are open for public from 8am to 7:30 pm .

The adult entrance fee costs 120 HRK (visit to Fort Lovrijenac is included in the price) . I started out late , but was informed that I could cover the fort which was on the other side of the city walls the next day on the same ticket .

The tickets can be purchased at the entrance or online .

Walk the main street-Stradun

Photo of Walls of Dubrovnik, Dubrovnik, Croatia by Madovertravel

Post N number of clicks & selfies ,I finished my self-guided tour. I spent the rest of the day walking the Stradun , shopping for tit-bits and soaking in the oh-so-lively ambience , culminating the day with a sumptuous dinner at one of the street restaurants – enjoying the music from the numerous surrounding bars . You will see People walking around usually all dressed up and chic to enjoy their night out . For me however it was the end of a long day ending with a 20 min uphill walk to my apartment .

DAY 2 Touring – Full day

Since I had booked the apartment only for a day , after a early check-out , I parked my car for my next day stay at Hilton Imperial , one of the well known hotels in the area , and right next to the Pile Gate. The best part – no more hike to get back home :D

Kayaking & Snorkeling

Photo of Stradun, Croatia by Madovertravel
Day 2

Having booked myself on a half day Kayak tour ( another highly recommended way to explore the city from yet another angle ) for 9 am – I was all set to enjoy the alluring crystal blue waters of the Adriatic Sea. The tour is great fun . Takes around 3-4 hours , including various site seeing and swim stops- with the guides narrating interesting stories , showing you the shooting locations of Game of Thrones & making sure you are comfortably enjoying the whole experience . The final stop is at a small cave beach for included light snacks , snorkelling & swimming .It was my first time kayaking , and I realized you really need quite a bit of stamina and arm strength to paddle the kayak for that long. Thankfully kayaking was in Tandem .

The tour starts & ends at the same location - from very near to the Pile Gate . So getting back to the hotel was a charm .

Tour Booking

I booked my tour on Viator for some 34 USD .

Website : https://www.viator.com/tours/Dubrovnik/Sea-kayaking-and-snorkeling-tour-Dubrovnik/d904-8645P9

Fort Lovrijenac

Post lunch and a short rest , I headed back to the street to complete my pending tour of Fort Lovrijenac from the previous day .

Cable Car to Mount Srdj

Photo of Srđ, Dubrovnik, Croatia by Madovertravel
Photo of Srđ, Dubrovnik, Croatia by Madovertravel

Post which I booked my self for a 2 way cable car ride to the top of Mount Srdj to enjoy the amazing views of Dubrovnik and nearby islands. There is a restaurant at the top – just like any other hill top viewing place around the world.

Basically all tours I did in the city were about viewing it from different angles – city walls , sea & then the hills . However , every experience is different and worth a while .

Attraction Info

The cable car tickets can be booked online for 120 HR per adult or again purchased at the start of the cable car station .

More info : http://www.dubrovnikcablecar.com

It was around 8 pm by the time I wound up from here.

Night-Life

There is this famous club – Cultural Club Revelin besides many other night –life options in the city. Frankly I saw just a lot of teenage crowd going in & out of the place, so it didn’t really excite me much. Moreover, I had landed straight from Tomorrowland Belgium into the city, so in any case my standards were set at very high: P

Other Touring Options:

I wasted quite a bit of day 1 in recovering from my tiredness from my previous trip.

For those who want to explore further:

• For Game of Throne Fans – you will see a lot of kiosks selling the the game of thrones shooting locations tour.

• There is a nearby Beach you can spend time at or you can take a day tour to one of the many neighboring islands.

• There is a pub-crawl to enjoy the night-life

• If you like museums – there are a few you can visit.

Hotels booked during stay :

Day 1: Apartments Superb View through Booking.com http://www.booking.com/hotel/hr/apartments-superb-view.html

Day 2 : Hilton Imperial direct through Hilton Site : http://www3.hilton.com/en/hotels/croatia/hilton-imperial-dubrovnik-DBVHIHI/index.html

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