Southern Dalmatia

We’ve compiled the best of the best in Southern Dalmatia - browse our top choices for the top things to see or do during your stay.

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  • 1. City Walls

    Stari Grad

    Dubrovnik's city walls define the Old Town and are one of the world's most stunning architectural achievements. A walk along the top is the ultimate...

    Dubrovnik's city walls define the Old Town and are one of the world's most stunning architectural achievements. A walk along the top is the ultimate Dubrovnik must-do for the magnificent views of the sea and Lokrum Island outside the walls and the terracotta rooftops within. Most of the original construction took place during the 13th century, though the walls were further reinforced with towers and bastions over the next 400 years. The walls completely encircle the Old Town as part of a fortification system that also includes four gates, including the Pile and Ploče Gates (the main entrances and exits to the Old Town), and four towers, including the freestanding Lovrijenac Fortress to the west and the Minčeta Tower toward the land. On average, the walls are 80 feet high and 2 km (1¼ miles) long, 10 feet thick on the seaward side, 20 feet thick on the inland side; the inland walls are thicker because when they were constructed, the largest threat came from the Turks who might attack from that direction (ironically they got the direction right, but not the source: it was Napoléon, attacking from the inland fortress atop Mt. Srđ, who finally conquered the Republic). The entire circuit takes a couple of hours if you stop for photos and maybe a drink along the way; note that it involves many stairs up and down, and is best done in the morning or late afternoon to avoid the heat and crowds. Tickets can be purchased at the main entrance inside the Pile Gate.

    Dubrovnik, Dubrovacko-Neretvanska, 20000, Croatia
    020-638–800

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: 200 Kn, includes entrance to Lovrijenac Fortress
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  • 2. Dubrovnik Cable Car

    Ploce

    Reopened in July 2010 after being destroyed in the siege of Dubrovnik, the ultramodern cable car whisks you up Mt. Srđ for the best view...

    Reopened in July 2010 after being destroyed in the siege of Dubrovnik, the ultramodern cable car whisks you up Mt. Srđ for the best view of the city and the islands. At the top, you can join an hour-long buggy tour of the area, go for a hike, or have a cocktail at the smart Panorama Restaurant. The Imperial Fort, built between 1806 and 1812 by Napoléon during his short rule of the city, now hosts the Homeland War Museum, where you can learn about the siege. To reach the cable car from the Old Town, go up the stairs from the Stradun (toward the mountain) and exit via the Buža Gate; tickets can be purchased at the station. Plan your visit for sunset, when the views are magnificent, and the line is shorter.

    Petra Krešimira IV, Dubrovnik, Dubrovacko-Neretvanska, 20000, Croatia
    020-414–355

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: 90 Kn one-way, 160 Kn return, Closed Feb.
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  • 3. Jesuit Steps

    Stari Grad

    Find this monumental Baroque staircase, Dubrovnik's very own version of the Spanish Steps, at the south side of Gundulićeva Poljana. At the top is the...

    Find this monumental Baroque staircase, Dubrovnik's very own version of the Spanish Steps, at the south side of Gundulićeva Poljana. At the top is the lovely Jesuit Church of St. Ignatius of Loyola, built 1699–1725. This staircase will be particularly familiar to Game of Thrones fans for a certain "shameful" scene.

    Poljana Ruđera Boškovića 6, Dubrovnik, Dubrovacko-Neretvanska, 20000, Croatia

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: Free
  • 4. Korta Katarina Winery

    Perched on a hill overlooking Trstenica Beach, award-winning Korta Katarina is a beautiful place to try Pelješac wines and the most accessible winery from Orebić....

    Perched on a hill overlooking Trstenica Beach, award-winning Korta Katarina is a beautiful place to try Pelješac wines and the most accessible winery from Orebić. Korta is the name for the typical courtyards outside sea captains' homes around town, while Katarina is the daughter of the American couple, Lee and Penny Anderson, who traveled to Croatia in 2001 while on a rebuilding mission in Bosnia, fell in love with it, and opened the winery. Korta Katerina now produces eight wines: six red and rosé made from Plavac Mali, one Rukatac, and one Pošip. A winery visit, tasting, and optional pairings, which range from wine and chocolate to a full gastronomical experience, can be arranged in advance. In addition, after nearly a decade of no-expenses spared renovations to the former Rivijera Hotel next-door, the five-star Relais & Chateaux Villa Korta Katerina opened to guests with eight luxury rooms available to rent.

    Bana J. Jelacica 3, Orebic, Dubrovacko-Neretvanska, 20250, Croatia
    099-525–7955
  • 5. Lokrum Island

    Some of Dubrovnik's most natural and peaceful beaches can be found on Lokrum, a short distance southeast of the Old Town. Lush and fertile, this...

    Some of Dubrovnik's most natural and peaceful beaches can be found on Lokrum, a short distance southeast of the Old Town. Lush and fertile, this tiny island is home to the ruins of an abandoned 11th-century monastery, set in exotic botanical gardens. Lokrum has swirled with legend and mystery ever since Richard the Lionheart was supposedly cast ashore there in 1191 upon returning from the Crusades. The story goes that when the Benedictine Monks were expelled from the island to make room for aristocrats in the 19th century, they left behind a curse on any future owners of the land, including Habsburg Emperor Maximilian, who turned the monastery into his summer residence eight years before he was executed in Mexico. To this day, it is considered bad luck to stay overnight on the island, though many a pair of romantics have tried. At the top of the island is a star-shaped fortress built by Napoléon's troops during French occupation and later used by the Austrian army. A network of footpaths leads down to the rocky shoreline, past the "dead sea" lake, where it's possible to swim. There are cliffs to jump from, coves to bathe in, and a small stretch of coast reserved for nudists. There's also a small Game of Thrones museum with the original Iron Throne (Lokrum was one of many filming locations around town). One of the most popular side trips from Dubrovnik, it's a wonderful place to spend a day spotting the peacocks (a Habsburg legacy), feeding the wild rabbits, or just enjoying the fresh air among the pines. To reach Lokrum, take a taxi-boat from the old port (100 Kn); they run every half hour during the summer and take approximately 15 minutes.

    Dubrovnik, Dubrovacko-Neretvanska, 20000, Croatia

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: Closed Nov.–Apr.
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  • 6. Love Stories Museum

    Pile

    Similar to the Museum of Broken Relationships in Zagreb except with happy endings, this delightful museum outside the Pile Gate is a simple, life-affirming celebration...

    Similar to the Museum of Broken Relationships in Zagreb except with happy endings, this delightful museum outside the Pile Gate is a simple, life-affirming celebration of romance spread over four floors. Each room has a different theme, from Croatia-specific tales and local lore to celebrity love stories to an exhibit about the movies and series filmed in Dubrovnik (yes, Game of Thrones is represented). The top floors are perhaps the most moving with items sent in from real people and notes scribbled on heart-shaped Post-its tacked all over the "love wall".

    Od Tabakarije 2, Dubrovnik, Dubrovacko-Neretvanska, Croatia
    095-3555–145

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: 50 Kn
  • 7. Lovrijenac Fortress

    Stari Grad

    The only freestanding part of Dubrovnik's fortification system, this impressive tower stands on a 37-meter-high sheer rock overlooking the sea outside the Pile Gate. Construction...

    The only freestanding part of Dubrovnik's fortification system, this impressive tower stands on a 37-meter-high sheer rock overlooking the sea outside the Pile Gate. Construction began sometime in the 11th century; the story goes that the Venetians planned to build a fortress atop the rock from which to conquer Dubrovnik, but the Republic learned of their plans in advance and beat them to it. The seaward walls are 12 meters thick while the walls facing Dubrovnik are only 60 centimeters thick, so that in the event the fortress was captured it could easily be destroyed from within the city walls. Above the entrance a latin enscription reads: "Non bene pro toto libertas venditur auro": "Freedom is not sold for all the gold in the world". The fortress makes a particularly memorable venue during the Dubrovnik Summer Festival when it is the setting for Hamlet, and it is also recognizable to Game of Thrones fans as the Red Keep (with slightly less CGI-added towers).

    Ul. od Tabakarije 29, Dubrovnik, Dubrovacko-Neretvanska, Croatia

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: 200 Kn, includes City Walls
  • 8. Mljet National Park

    Most people come to Mljet to visit the peaceful national park that covers the entire western part of the island and encompasses the towns of...

    Most people come to Mljet to visit the peaceful national park that covers the entire western part of the island and encompasses the towns of Pomena and Polače, plus miles of dense pine forests, biking and walking trails, and two interconnected aquamarine saltwater lakes—Malo Jezero (Little Lake) and Veliko Jezero (Big Lake)—which are ideal for swimming from spring to autumn. The Benedictine monks who owned the island between 1191 and 1410 left a significant footprint; they dug a transport channel to the coast through the lakes, which turned them from freshwater to saltwater. In the middle of Veliko Jezero is the Isle of St. Mary, with its charming 12th-century monastery, which now houses a small restaurant. You can reach the Isle of St. Mary by boat (30 Kn return) or kayak (80 Kn per hour) from the small bridge Mali Most. Mountain bikes are also available to rent at Mali Most or from Hotel Odisej in Pomena. The park is within walking distance from the port in Polače or Pomena, or if you arrive to the port in Sobra you can catch a local bus.

    Pristanište 2, Govedari, Dubrovacko-Neretvanska, 20225, Croatia
    020-744–041

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: June–Sept., 125 Kn; Oct.–May, 70 Kn
  • 9. Odysseus Cave

    There are wonderful places to swim all around Mljet, but the village of Babino Polje, in the center of the island, is home to the...

    There are wonderful places to swim all around Mljet, but the village of Babino Polje, in the center of the island, is home to the most magical spot of all. Greek legend has it that when the hero Odysseus was shipwrecked off the island known as Ogygia, he swam into a cave where he was met by a nymph called Calypso; he was so bewitched by her that he stayed for the next seven years. The cave isn't easy to reach so there are never any crowds, which adds to its mystique. You can get there directly by boat, or if you're traveling by car, bike, or scooter, park at the Tommy market in Babino Polje and follow the signs and trails through the olive groves on foot. The walk takes around an hour, and includes a steep downhill section and uneven rocks, so make sure to wear decent shoes and bring water. Once you arrive, you can jump off the rocks and swim through a short tunnel into the cave; aim to arrive around noon when the sun is high and the water is aquamarine. There is a makeshift café perched on the rocks above the cave; there may or may not be someone working there, but it makes a great place to stop for a break.

    Babino Polje, Dubrovacko-Neretvanska, 20225, Croatia
  • 10. Rector's Palace

    Stari Grad

    One of the most significant buildings along the Croatian Coast, this was the administrative center of the Dubrovnik Republic. It's where the Grand Council and...

    One of the most significant buildings along the Croatian Coast, this was the administrative center of the Dubrovnik Republic. It's where the Grand Council and Senate held their meetings and the chief citizen, the Rector, lived and did business during his one-month term. It also held a courtroom, prisons, meeting halls, and a gunpowder room, which exploded twice in the 15th century. The explosions, plus the earthquake of 1667, required the building to be reconstructed over the years in varying Baroque, Renaissance, and Gothic styles. The palace is now home to the Cultural Historical Museum, containing exhibits that give a picture of life in Dubrovnik from early days until the fall of the republic.

    Pred Dvorom 3, Dubrovnik, Dubrovacko-Neretvanska, 20000, Croatia
    020-321–422

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: 100 Kn
  • 11. Red History Museum

    Gruž

    Located in an industrial factory in Gruž, the Red History Museum tells the story of the rise and fall of communism in Croatia. Founded by...

    Located in an industrial factory in Gruž, the Red History Museum tells the story of the rise and fall of communism in Croatia. Founded by a young group of entrepreneurs in 2019, among them a designer, a historian, and a couple who worked on film sets, it is fun and fresh museum designed to be touched and explored. Taking a steadfastly neutral approach, the exhibits focus largely on everyday life under communism, from the clothing of the era to the kitchen sets to sex education, with historical information weaved effortlessly throughout the colorful displays. In a city that tends to rest on the laurels of its illustrious past, it's nice to see a new museum dedicated to something other than the Republic of Dubrovnik.

    Svetog Kriza 3, Dubrovnik, Dubrovacko-Neretvanska, Croatia
    020-091–540

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: 50 Kn
  • 12. Solana Ston

    There are records of salt being collected by Romans in this area dating back to 167 B.C, but it was the Republic of Dubrovnik that...

    There are records of salt being collected by Romans in this area dating back to 167 B.C, but it was the Republic of Dubrovnik that fully recognized the economic potential of the salt pans. In 1333, it founded the towns of Ston and Mali Ston, built a fortified wall to protect them, and eventually the sea salt became its most valuable product, generating one-third of its wealth. Today you can take a tour of the massive salt pans, the oldest in Europe, to learn about the ancient collecting process using just sun, sea, and wind, which are still employed today. If the salt pans are closed when you arrive, ask at Vila Koruna in Mali Ston (which also owns the salt pans) about organizing a tour. You can also buy souvenir bags of the organic sea salt around town.

    Pelješki put 1, Ston, Dubrovacko-Neretvanska, Croatia
    020-754–027

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: 15 Kn, Closed Oct.–Apr.
  • 13. Stradun

    Stari Grad

    The Placa, commonly known as the Stradun, is the main street in Dubrovnik's Old Town, stretching 300 meters from the Pile Gate to Luža Square...

    The Placa, commonly known as the Stradun, is the main street in Dubrovnik's Old Town, stretching 300 meters from the Pile Gate to Luža Square and the Bell Tower. It is paved with limestone and polished by regular use; in the middle of summer, when the street is being walked upon by thousands of people, it shines like glass and is particularly impressive at night, when it reflects the light from the street lamps. It was once the shallow sea channel separating the island of Laus from the mainland. Although it was filled in during the 12th century, it continued to divide the city socially for several centuries, with the nobility living in the area south of Placa and the commoners living on the hillside to the north. The Stradun is the best people-watching promenade in town, but beware that prices at the bars and restaurants lining it reflect its popularity.

    Dubrovnik, Dubrovacko-Neretvanska, 20000, Croatia
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  • 14. Šunj Beach

    A swath of white sand backed by pine forests, with a couple of unobtrusive bars and restaurants, it's worth the 2½ km (1½ mile) trek...

    A swath of white sand backed by pine forests, with a couple of unobtrusive bars and restaurants, it's worth the 2½ km (1½ mile) trek across the island to reach one of Croatia's only sandy beaches. The path is quite hilly in both directions, so you might want to hail a golf cart to get there or back—you'll see them driving around the main promenade or parked just above the beach.

    Lopud, Dubrovacko-Neretvanska, Croatia
  • 15. Bell Tower

    Stari Grad

    ...

    All walks down the Stradun lead to one point: the bell tower, the centerpiece of Luža Square. The bright white structure from 1444 is one of the main symbols of the city, reaching 31 meters high and featuring a moon dial and the original bell from 1506. Look a little closer to see Dubrovnik's two favorite mascots tolling the hours on either side of the bell; known as Maro and Baro, the current figures are made of bronze, while the original wooden men are now found in the Rector's Palace.

    Dubrovnik, Dubrovacko-Neretvanska, 20000, Croatia
  • 16. Crkva Svetog Vlaha

    Stari Grad

    This 18th-century Baroque church replaced an earlier one destroyed by fire. Of particular note is the silver statue on the high altar of St. Blaise...

    This 18th-century Baroque church replaced an earlier one destroyed by fire. Of particular note is the silver statue on the high altar of St. Blaise holding a model of Dubrovnik, which was the only thing that survived the fire. It is paraded around town each year on February 3, the Day of St. Blaise.

    Luža 3, Dubrovnik, Dubrovacko-Neretvanska, 20000, Croatia

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: Free, Mon.– Sat. 7–noon and 4:00–8, Sun. 7–1
  • 17. Dominican Monastery

    Stari Grad

    With a splendid, late-15th-century floral Gothic cloister as its centerpiece, the monastery is best known for its museum, which houses a rich collection of religious...

    With a splendid, late-15th-century floral Gothic cloister as its centerpiece, the monastery is best known for its museum, which houses a rich collection of religious paintings by the Dubrovnik School from the 15th and 16th centuries. Look out for works by Titian, Božidarević, Hamzić, and Dobričević, as well as gold and silver ecclesiastical artifacts crafted by local goldsmiths.

    Sv. Dominika 4, Dubrovnik, Dubrovacko-Neretvanska, 20000, Croatia
    020-321–423

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: 30 Kn
  • 18. Franciscan Monastery

    Stari Grad

    This monastery's chief claim to fame is its pharmacy, which was founded in 1318 and is still in existence today, making it one of the...

    This monastery's chief claim to fame is its pharmacy, which was founded in 1318 and is still in existence today, making it one of the oldest in Europe. There's also a delightful cloistered garden, framed by Romanesque arcades supported by double columns, each crowned with a set of grotesque figures. In the Treasury a painting shows what Dubrovnik looked like before the disastrous earthquake of 1667. Watch for locals (mostly young men) jumping up on a small gargoyle's head attached to the outer wall of the monastery along the Stradun. Legend has it that if you can stand on the head facing the wall and take off your shirt off without falling down, you will find love. Yes, it's harder than it looks.

    Placa 2, Dubrovnik, Dubrovacko-Neretvanska, 20000, Croatia
    020-321–410

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: 40 Kn
  • 19. Franjevački Samostan

    A 20-minute walk up the hill above Orebić brings you to the 15th-century Franciscan monastery, perched 492 feet above sea level. The view across the...

    A 20-minute walk up the hill above Orebić brings you to the 15th-century Franciscan monastery, perched 492 feet above sea level. The view across the channel to Korčula is spectacular; the view, in fact, explains the monastery's prime location. During the heyday of the Dubrovnik Republic, Pelješac was under Dubrovnik control, while Korčula was ruled by their archrival, Venice. From this privileged vantage point, the Franciscan monks would spy upon their island neighbors, under strict orders to send a messenger to Dubrovnik if trouble looked likely. Today the monastery is a most welcoming retreat, with a lovely cloister and a small museum displaying scale models of the ships that local sea captains sailed across the oceans; there's also an array of votive pictures dedicated to the Virgin, commissioned and donated by sailors who had been saved from trouble on the high seas. Before leaving, check out the cemetery, where gray marble tombstones shaded by cypress trees mark the final resting places of many a local seafarer.

    Orebic, Dubrovacko-Neretvanska, 20250, Croatia
    020-713–075

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: 20 Kn, Closed Oct.–May
  • 20. Gradski Muzej Korčula

    Located in a 16th-century stone palace on the main square, this charming museum contains items from all eras of the island's history, from Neolithic stone...

    Located in a 16th-century stone palace on the main square, this charming museum contains items from all eras of the island's history, from Neolithic stone knives to vessels excavated from Greek and Roman shipwrecks to wooden ships models built in the 1960s. Check out the quirky objects in the original kitchen in the attic, such as gadgets for making macaroni or kneading bread.

    Trg Sv. Marka, Korcula, Dubrovacko-Neretvanska, 20260, Croatia
    091-262–3002

    Sight Details

    Rate Includes: 20 Kn, Closed weekends unless by appointment

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