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Croatia with trips to Mostar & Bay of Kotar

Croatia with trips to Mostar & Bay of Kotar

Old Mar 27th, 2017, 12:33 PM
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Croatia with trips to Mostar & Bay of Kotar

My husband and I are planning an 8 night trip to Croatia in late May / early June. This is our first kid free trip in 13 years and first time to Croatia! We will fly into Split on May 28 in the afternoon. We plan to spend two nights in Split. Then we will take the early morning ferry to Korcula and spend two nights there. Then depart on the ferry to Dubrovnik which arrives at noon.
My question starts here. We had originally thought we would spend 4 nights in Dubrovnik and use two of the days to do day trips to the Bay of Kotor and Mostar. Our plan was to rent a car in the morning, visit Kotor, spend the night back in Dubrovnik and the next morning go to Mostar for the day. As I started investigating parking in Dubrovnik it appears that parking costs a lot. Is it really around $100 US dollars for one day? We would probably only be parking overnight, but still, that is outrageous.
So now I am rethinking and have several options:
1. Original plan and try to find somewhere to stay with parking.
2. Stay in Dubrovnik the first night, rent car in the morning and drive to Kotor, then that same day drive to Mostar and spend the night. Explore Mostar the second day and then return back to Dubrovnik that evening and return the car. Then have two more nights in Dubrovnik - leaving very early in the morning for the airport on Monday, June 5th. The negative is that we are staying at 3 hotels/rooms in 4 nights.
3. Rent car and leave for Mostar right when we get into town from Korcula. Spend two nights in Mostar so we have a full day there. Drive to the Bay of Kotor early in the morning and spend the day there before driving back to Dubrovnik and dropping off the rental car. Then 2 nights in Dubrovnik before our flight out. Negative - We would only have the one full day in Dubrovnik.
Let me know what you think our best option is. Or if there is another option I haven't thought of.
jenmarkolson is offline  
Old Mar 27th, 2017, 12:47 PM
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Did the Croatia thing 2013 and started Split which is a charming place--the corso with all the ouside cafe's

A ferry to Hvar (2nts) then ferry to Korcula and on to Dubrovnik.

A bus to Kotor and such a medievil town but gr8

Now my trip to Mostar was bus across some serious mountain type roads thru Sarejevo to Mostar

Not the road I would choose to drive
Coolmover is offline  
Old Mar 27th, 2017, 12:59 PM
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I don't recommend driving to Montenegro and and then Mostar in a day - that's a long day and you will be too rushed. For me, Kotor itself was not that exciting - I spent a night there - but the Bay of Kotor scenery was amazing. For me, the visit was all about the beautiful scenery and less about the towns (I really enjoyed a brief stop in Perast around the bay from Kotor, actually, and kind of wished I had stayed there instead). Anyway - I enjoyed the drive along the way, stopping numerous times for pictures. And after Kotor, I drove through the mountains (via Njeguši) up to the town of Cetinje, over a twisty road with beautiful views down on the bay. You could do all of that in a day but not if you have to drive all the way to Mostar, I'd guess. (Would be a very long day of driving.)

(If you drive from Dubrovnik to Montenegro, look for the alternate "Konfin border crossing" to avoid the main one that can get backed up with tour buses from Dubrovnik.)

I recommend staying in/near the old town of Dubrovnik if you can, at least on a first visit, but you're right - parking a car near the old town will not be cheap. $100 per night sounds too high, though. I'm sure it's cheaper than that. There are lots where you can park, though I didn't use one.

Another option is to stay away from the old town a bit, where you can park the car cheap/free, and take a bus into the old town. Some people stay in Catvat and take a bus into Dubrovnik. I've been to Dubrovnik twice; first time, I didn't have a car and that was great - I stayed right outside the Pile Gate and easily walked into town. The second visit, with a car, I stayed in nearby Lapad - a resorty (kind of dull) area, kind of a suburb of Dubrovnik with beaches - where I found a cheap hotel and parking for 5 euros/day. I took the bus into the old town - which was very easy, because bus service was frequent from Lapad, and I had been there before. Buses even run pretty late, and it's not unsafe to be out late in old town Dubrovnik - and you should stay late enough to see it after dusk, when it's so beautiful all lit up.

I like the idea of spending at least a night in Mostar (which is better at night, crowded during the day with daytrippers) and dropping the car as you get to Dubrovnik, so you can stay near the old town and walk in like I did. It's just easier to get into/out of the old town, and you won't really need four nights in Dubrovnik. I would want at least two nights minimum though, especially as you are departing.

One other option would be to try to get from Korcula to Mostar by bus and spend a night there, then another bus to Dubrovnik. Rent a car there just for a day to drive down to Kotor and back. But getting from Korcula to Mostar by public transportation may not be easy. There may be a bus once a week or something. There was (is?) a travel agency that runs a shuttle service to/from various places in season - maybe for a fee they would drive you to Mostar. If you have booked lodging in Korcula already, check with them and ask if they know how to get to Mostar from Korcula (it would be easy to drive - two short ferries, but might take a few hours - and what it would cost. I have no doubt you can find someone to drive you; it's just a matter of the cost.

You could also take a catamaran back to Split after Korcula and take a bus from there to Mostar, but that's a lot of backtracking.
Andrew is offline  
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