Southern Dalmatia's (and indeed Croatia's) most luxurious hotels are in Dubrovnik; you can stay in renovated palaces, restored summer villas, even a former nunnery! Prices are higher in Dubrovnik than elsewhere, but it is possible to find accommodation to suit lower budgets, particularly in private apartments in the Old Town. Outside Dubrovnik, prices drop and standards generally remain high. There are a number of large, 1970s socialist-era hotels scattered around the area; many are disappointingly impersonal, full of tour groups, and in desperate need of sprucing up. Opt for boutique hotels or apartments wherever possible, where the service is more personal and you have a great chance to live as the locals do. Where once the owners would wait at the bus station with faded photos of their rooms, most are now bookable online. For most of the region, the season runs from Easter through late October, peaking during July and August, when prices rise significantly and it may be difficult to find a place to sleep if you have not booked in advance.