Dubrovnik Trip Report

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Jul 6th, 2010, 05:48 PM
  #1
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Dubrovnik Trip Report

I would like to thank all the Fodorites who helped me plan our trip, with your recommendations and advice. I am not a prolific writer so please forgive my brief report.

We arrivied in Dubrovnik after spending 4 days in Ireland. My family (two teenaged sons) stayed in the Old Town in what was supposed to be a two bedroom apartment. However, upon arrival, we learned that the apartment wasn't completed so the owner offered us two one-room apartments for the same price (110 Euros for both) www.dubrovnik-online.com/apartment_plaza. The accomodations were great and included a washer, A/C (in both apartments) and a kitchen in ours. Clean and well appointed and up approximately 80 stairs from the main plaza, which allowed us to work off some of the great meals we enjoyed.

We signed up for a sea kayak tour around the island of Kolocep with Huck-Finn www.huck-finn.hr, which I would highly recommend. The day lasted from 9 - 5 and we paddled around the island, stopping to swim, explore caves and just relax.

Perhaps the highlight of our vacation was the day we booked with Zoran from www.vacationindubrovnik.com. Zoran picked us up at 9:00 for our day trip to Mostar. A native Dubrovnian, he was an excellant guide and really engaged our sons in the tour - Zoran is a big sports fan! We stopped at picturesque places and small villages along the way where Zoran would explain the local culture. When we arrived in Mostar we walked through both sides and Zoran took us to a small Bosnian restaurant, which we never would have found on our own, for perhaps the best meal of our trip - meat, cheese and spinach pies along with a mixed grill that was absolutely delicious.

Zoran never rushed us and we wandered through the town and the small shops. I forgot to mention that Zoran was a chef for 10 years in Dubrovnik, so he was a great source for recommendations and advice, especially where NOT to go. Because many of our conversations revolved around food, Zoran took us to Ston on our way back to Dubrovnik, where we stopped at a family run oyster farm. My husband and sons ordered nearly 40 oysters (which were then pulled direclty from the sea) and the owner provided complimentary home made wine, bread and mineral water as well. Again, this was a small oyster farm that we never would have found or could imagine that a traditional tour group would have encountered. By the end of the day, we felt like old friends. However, we would soon see Zoran again, although under very different circumstances.

The next morning, my family was preparing to start the day, when I realized that I couldn't find our passports. We called Zoran to see if they fell out in his van, which they hadn't. You can imagine the panic that began to set in when we searched the apartment and couldn't find them and we were leaving for home the next day. We went to the tourist information booth to see if someone had turned them in to no avail, but learned that Zoran's wife, Ivana, had already been there to ask for them. As our sons went over our steps from the night before and asked in the restaurants along the way, we learned again, that Ivana had been there asking for them as well.

We went to the police department to report them lost and ran into some language issues and decided to call Ivana to see if she could help translate (she is from Canada originally). Next thing we know, Zoran appears at the station! Unbelievable!!! To make a long story short, we did find our passports (the fell out of one bag into another - jeez). We will always remember the assistance, concern and kindess extended by Ivana and Zoran. They are truly remarkable people.

Favorite restaurants in Dubrovnik:

Lady Pi Pi - excellant grilled foods, very casual, wonderful views - reasonable
Moby Dick - again, great food, fresh seafood, wonderful service
Oliva Pizza - by the slice 10 Kuna - excellant
Gils' - extremely expensive but incredible French fusion cuisine -
Dolce Vita - the best gelato


I hope this helps and thanks everyone for their help. Safe Travels
skiobx is offline  
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Jul 6th, 2010, 06:28 PM
  #2
 
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Thanks for the great report. We will be in Dubrovnik in October and will keep the list of favorite restaurants handy for our visit. Was the Bosnian restaurant in Mostar? We are stopping there on our way to Split and would love the name of the place.
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Jul 6th, 2010, 06:41 PM
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Thanks for the info. I will be in Dubrovnik in September. I will contact Doran for that same tour. And thanks for the favorite restaurants list.

So glad you found your passports. I know it was a terrible time til you did find them.
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Jul 6th, 2010, 07:08 PM
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What a great report. We will be there in October. I too would love the name of the restaurant in Mostar (sounds like we may also need some directions?).
Thanks for taking the time.
AD
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Jul 6th, 2010, 07:23 PM
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Hey Folks,

Glad the restaurant list will help....I asked Zoran the name of the restaurant in Mostar, but he didn't know..I can tell you the restaurant was on the Muslim side of the Bridge. When you cross the bridge, stay to your left, the street winds around and it is the last building on your left It is a small building with a covered deck sith about four tables. The sign on the front says: SVA KUHANA
JELA
RAZANJ
ROSTILJ
SAC

I'm sorry I couldn't be more helpful.
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Jul 8th, 2010, 04:36 AM
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Thanks for the report,the Mostar trip sounds great. I too prefer hiring a driver rather than a group tour.
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Jul 8th, 2010, 06:41 AM
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Did you fly directly to Dubrovnik from Ireland? Did you rent a car? How many day were you there?
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Jul 8th, 2010, 07:16 AM
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skiobx-did you book the tour with Zoran in advance? Or will I be safe waiting til I get to Dubrovnik?

kenav--we are flying from Zurich to Dubrovnik, but there are ferries from Italy. I think it takes hours though.
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Jul 8th, 2010, 07:50 AM
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Scatcat -- I contacted Zoran and Ivana at [email protected] (their website is www.vacationindubrovnik.com) in advance of our arrival. Ivana was great in that we penciled in two days, and I confirmed the exact day and time upon our arrival in Dubrovnik. She was very responsive and organized and we were able to design our tour according to my family's interests. My advice would be to book in advance as only Zoran conducts the tours and I'd hate to see you lose out if he's already booked during your stay. As an aside, they also provide airport service which we also utilized.

Kenav - yes, we flew directly from Dublin to Croatia on Aer Lingus. They offered the lowest fares as we were coming from the US. We did not rent a car, as we used Zoran for Bosnia and Huck-Finn provided pick-up and delivery services for Kolocep Island. For our trips to the islands we used the ferrys out of the Ploce gate or you could also use Gruz. Most other places are accessible to ferry and/or taxi (e.g. Cavtat). Unfortunately, we were only in Croatia 5 days, one of which was lost to dealing with the passport debacle. There did seem to be plenty of rental car options from both the Pile and Ploce gates, unless you arrange before hand.

I hope this helps.
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Jul 9th, 2010, 08:23 AM
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skiobx, What is the average cost of your tour to Mostar?
Boats_Beaches_Bars is offline  
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Jul 9th, 2010, 04:01 PM
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Hey Boats...

The tour cost 200 euros, which included pick up at the the Buza Gate (we stayed in Old Town)about 9:00 and we returned around 7:00. Entrance into Blagaj was 2 euros pp. Our lunch was very inexpensive about 20 euros for 5 people including drinks and dessert and the oysters at Ston were about 1 US Dollar each.
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