After leaving Split, Croatia we traveled down the coast with beautiful views of The Adriatic Sea to our next destination, Dubrovnik, Croatia. I have read that Dubrovnik is the top destination for travel this year, 2019. “Game of Thrones” helped put the city on the map, as many scenes were filmed in Dubrovnik. In my list of “top 12 things to do in Dubrovnik”, I will describe the private tour you can take showing many locations of the scenes.
- City Walls – Dubrovnik’s city walls define the Old Town and our one of the world’s most beautiful and stunning architectural achievements. Plan on allocating 2-3 hours to walk along the top and see the most incredible views of the city and sea. Every location you turn, the sight is more stunning then the previous one.
2. Visit Rector’s Palace – This is one of the most important structures along the Croatian Coast. It was the administrative center of the Dubrovnik Republic where all all kinds of business took place. During the 1667 earthquake, this was one of two buildings in the city walls that survived. There was some damage that needed to be repaired. The architecture and furnishings are stunning.
3. Take the Dubrovnik Cable Car to the highest point of the city with spectacular views. You can enjoy a cocktail at the Panorama restaurant while soaking in the beauty and architecture.
4. Walk the Placa, also known as the Stradum, which is a great promenade of people watching, shopping and dining. Off the Placa are narrow streets with cafes, shops, and some sights such as churches and gorgeous old architecture.
5. Visit Lokrum Island – There are taxi-boats that run every half hour from the old harbor. A beautiful island with pristine beaches, cliffs to jump from, coves to bathe in. You will see the most exquisite large peacocks and the cutest bunnies roaming all over the island. There are several other places to visit on the island that are noted on the area map. If you would like to spend the day, there are a couple outdoor cafes to dine at. If you are a “Game of Thrones” fan, the real iron throne is there.
6. Visit a Buza Bar – While you are walking the city walls, you must visit one of two of the Buza bars, the only bars on the seaside of the city walls. Walk through an 800 year old wall to find a secret swimming spot. Tables are arranged on a terrace built into the rocks with jazzy music playing and stunning vistas and people watching. You can jump right off the rocks for a swim in the Adriatic Sea if you choose!
7. Stay at Villa Dubrovnik – This is where we stayed, and I highly recommend it (www.villadubrovnik.com). The five star hotel is part of “Fine Hotels and Resorts”. As a member, you receive great amenities such as early check-in, upgraded room if available, $100.00 credit to go towards your bill, complimentary breakfast for two each morning in your room or at the restaurant. Additionally, the hotel is conveniently located to the Old City…a mere five minute walk. The rooms are very posh, all overlooking the Adriatic Sea! The resort has waterside dining, waterside bar, and a private lounge area. The service is impeccable and the dining experience is outstanding that we ate there twice!! Additionally, the hotel has a private boat that can take you to the nearby islands!
9. If you are a “Game of Thrones” fan, I recommend to take a group or private tour, where you will see several areas of the Old City where scenes of the show were filmed. I have never watch the showed but my entire family is addicted, so I agreed to participate with my daughter. I absolutely loved it!! You also will learn quite a bit about the city. One of the scenes is filmed at the Jesuit Steps, which is their version of the Spanish Steps in Rome. This was the scene of “the walk of shame”.
10. Visit The Cathedral. The original structure was destroyed in the 1667 earthquake. The existing structure was completed in 1713. The interior contains a number of notable paintings.
11. Recommended Restaurants and Bars – I highly recommend the Cave Bar which is in the Hotel More (www.hotelmore.com) underneath the hotel. the cave is 8,000 years old. You take an elevator to get down. It is quite unique and fun with caves overhead, twinkling lights and right on the water! The D’Vino Wine bar is a must right in the Old City.
- Amfora – LOVE! Fodor says, “The best restaurant in Dubrovnik, and one of the best in the country.” I couldn’t agree more!
- Azur – Asian inspired next to one of the Buza Bars. Right under the city walls spread over two shady trees. Excellent and fun!
- Pantarul – A local favorite and off the beaten track, but we loved it and would definitely go back! Food and wine are excellent and friendly staff. It was extremely crowded.
- Lady Pi-Pi – Shady terrace and wonderful views. simple but delicious food. Fun at night too!
- Bota Sare Oyster and Sushi Bar – We ate here for lunch one day and everything is so fresh…oysters, sushi etc…right out of the sea
12. Shopping – There are several adorable authentic shops along the Placa and the side streets. I would recommend just walking around and seeing what you like. Two of my favorites are a gorgeous antique store with small furniture but all kinds of trinkets. Some of the most unusual pieces I have seen. The owner, a sweet lady has traveled all over the world collecting! I found several goodies that I couldn’t live without. There are several jewelry stores that have there handmade jewelry from the country. Some beautiful pieces!
*** If you have plenty of time there, I also recommend taking a Adriatic Kayak Tour and visit Elafiti Islands and visiting as many islands as you can along the coast.
Tracy Dunn – Tracy Dunn Design