Planning on spending 5 days in Dubrovnik but not sure how to fill your time? You’ve come to the right place as this article will give you all the detailed information you need to form a great itinerary!
Dubrovnik is a fabulous city that is a must-visit location in Croatia. It is well-known for its medieval history and the amazing buildings which still stand proudly in the Old Town.
Spending a few days in the city is a great way to get a feel for Croatian culture and explore the islands close to the coastline. The city is always buzzing with the hum of tourists and there is always something happening in Dubrovnik.
This article will give you a guide to having an unforgettable 5 days in Dubrovnik and give you the top pointers that you need to know before visiting the city. I’ve also got some great recommendations for where to eat, stay and which companies are best for tours!
Without further introduction, enjoy this post on how to spend 5 days in Dubrovnik!
Is 5 Days in Dubrovnik Enough?
Dubrovnik is a city that can be explored in a number of different time frames. You could even plan a hectic one day Dubrovnik itinerary which covers a lot of the Old Town.
The perfect number of days for a stay in Dubrovnik really depends on what you’re planning to do and if you’re open to leaving the city for a day trip.
Spending 5 days in Dubrovnik is a great idea, but may require you to take an excursion to ensure you don’t get bored! The city has lots of cool things to do but you could easily do them all in 3-4 days rather than 5.
There are plenty of nearby cities that are worth visiting and can easily be explored in a half- or full-day excursion from Dubrovnik. Plenty of tour companies offer transfers with local guides who will tour the cities with you, giving you lots of information.
5 days in Dubrovnik is more than enough to allow you to completely explore the Old Town, carry out a few water activities and explore nearby cities – maybe even across the border!
What is Dubrovnik Like?
Dubrovnik has become a bit of a tourist gem in recent years. Lots of tourists return year after year to enjoy the city all over again and spend some time by the glorious crystal waters.
Once you’re there you’ll understand exactly why the city has such a grip on people and why Dubrovnik is definitely a city worth visiting! It is just wonderful and there is such a magical atmosphere around it. It can be very hard to resist returning to Dubrovnik once you’ve been!
Dubrovnik has so much natural beauty and an incredible history which is well-worth exploring. The city has a lot of character and charm, it’s no wonder the city has had over 1 million visitors every year for 3 years before COVID.
The Old Town of Dubrovnik is the showpiece and is very admirable, even in pictures. The town is encircled by medieval stone walls which once acted as defence from incoming invaders.
Dubrovnik’s architecture is just incredible. Wandering through its narrow streets, you’ll encounter countless, charming limestone buildings topped with terracotta roofs.
The streets are dotted with quaint shops and delightful cafes, offering an array of unique souvenirs and delicious treats. The Stradun, the main street in the Old Town is stunning to walk down and gives great views of the walls and towers inside the city.
Perched alongside the Adriatic Sea, basically clinging to the clifftops, Dubrovnik boasts some unbelievable coastal views. Walking atop the ancient walls, you’ll understand what I mean when you get there. The walls go on for ages and give you some incredible views of crystal-clear waters that stretch endlessly.
It’s no wonder the city was a backdrop for some scenes in the popular TV series Game of Thrones!
Dubrovnik is not just about its history. Food lovers will grin from ear to ear when they see a menu for a traditional Croatian restaurant in the city. Dubrovnik is known for its fresh seafood.
Dining at a seaside restaurant is a must, where you can savour the catch of the day while enjoying the tranquil sounds of the waves.
If seafood isn’t your thing then do not fear! There are an endless number of different restaurants throughout the city. Italian restaurant seem to be the most popular, so if you’re looking for a simple pizza then you definitely won’t have to search very far!
Where to Stay in Dubrovnik
Dubrovnik is full of great places to stay and there is accommodation to suit every budget and traveller group. The number of apartments across the city has sky-rocketed in recent years and so it is easy to find private accommodation in Dubrovnik when looking online.
However, you may need to look months in advance. The high season for visiting the city is June-August and so you may have to consider booking your stay around the Christmas time before in order to get somewhere reserved that suits.
Many tourists have started to invest in holiday homes near Dubrovnik which is not great for the locals as it puts more pressure on the housing market. These tourists typically spend the high season in Croatia and some then rent out the home to visitors in other months of the year. If you can, try to book with locally owned apartments or hotels so that you can be sure your money is going into the local economy.
Guest houses and hostels are extremely common around Dubrovnik. There are plenty close to the Old Town and in the main commercial area of the city, meaning you’ll be well connected to top attractions.
The area of Gruž is a great place to stay when visiting Dubrovnik, particularly if you are staying for 5 days. The neighbourhood is full of restaurants, clubs and supermarkets and is very short distance from the Old Town and main attractions.
Gruž has its own port too which allows you to take advantage of tours which operate from outside of the Old Town. The ferry port is where all of the big cruise ships will dock on their journeys around the Mediterranean and the bus station that the likes of Flixbus coaches travel to Dubrovnik to will stop at the bus station in the neighbourhood.
The Gruž Market is a highlight of the area with fresh produce, fish and flowers sold down by the waterfront. The market is much larger than ones that you may find in the Old Town and the prices are much less inflated. The stock varies from day to day, but Friday is usually the best. Get to the market early to ensure you get the freshest produce!
To get from Gruž to the Old Town, you can easily walk. However, with the Dubrovnik Pass, you are permitted free travel for the length of your ticket and so why not take the weight off your feet and travel to the Old Town by bus?
There are also many other areas that are great to stay in – all with their own unique qualities. Lapad and Babin Kuk are two of the most popular areas to stay after Gruž.
Here are a few of the best accommodation options I could find in the Gruž areas and surrounding neighbourhoods, divided into categories.
|Accommodation||Rating||Information||Make a Booking|
|Apartments and Rooms Villa Naida||8.7/10||– 4 star guest house|
– Shared kitchen space
– Staff onsite 24 hours a day
– Perfect location
|Boutique Hotel Porto||9.1/10||– Very close to Old Town|
– Breakfast available every morning
– Balcony rooms available
|Berkeley Hotel & Day Spa||8.7/10||– Range of room views|
– Airport shuttle, fishing excursions and luxury boat charter are available on request.
– Wellness centre on site
|Accommodation||Rating||Information||Make a Booking|
|Aquamarine Deluxe Apartment||9.8/10||– Sleeps 4 people|
– 1 double bed, 1 single, 1 sofa bed
– Balcony and sea views
– 2 bathrooms
– Air conditioning
|Apartments Villa Barbara||9.5/10||– 3 bed apartment|
– Max 6 people
– Fully equipped kitchen
– Located in Lapad
|Apartments Dilberovic||9.1/10||– Apartments for groups of 2-4|
– Sea views and balconies
– Close to a bus stop
– Supermarkets nearby
|Accommodation||Rating||Information||Make a Booking|
|Orka Apartments||8.6/10||– Self catering apartments|
– Sea or garden views
– Comfortable rooms
– 10 minutes from Old Town by bus
|Hostel Angelina||8.9/10||– Located inside Dubrovnik Old Town|
– Historic building
– Self-catering facilities
|Petra Marina||8.1/10||– Air conditioning|
– Terrace with sea view
– 800 metres from main bus station in Dubrovnik (at Gruž Port)
|Accommodation||Rating||Information||Make a Booking|
|Apartment Denis||9.6/10||– Two bedrooms|
– Terrace with sea view
– 500 metres from port
– 2 single beds, 1 large double
|Dubrovnik Old Town Apartments||9.4/10||– Top pick for families with children|
– Located in Old Town
– Close to the beach
|Apartment Anita||9.0/10||– Max 4 people|
– 2 single beds, 1 sofa bed
– Equipped kitchen
Hopefully there is an accommodation option there that suits! Remember, Gruž is one of the best areas to stay when visiting Dubrovnik, it is much cheaper than other areas, is a bit less touristy and is only a short distance from main attractions. This makes it the perfect area to stay if you’re spending 5 days in Dubrovnik!
Getting Around Dubrovnik
Dubrovnik and the surrounding neighbourhoods are very walkable aside for a few steep hills which may slow you down. However, with the Dubrovnik Pass, you are permitted free travel for the length of your ticket and so why not take the weight off your feet and travel to the Old Town by bus?
The bus services in Dubrovnik can be quite confusing to first figure out, but once you know which numbers passing your stop go to the Old Town, it is simple to get there. The buses are usually pretty on time but they do occasionally not show up.
One tip about buses in Dubrovnik and in fact all of Croatia – do not assume that there will be a queue forming! Maybe it was just a personal experience but when I was in Croatia, everyone waiting for the bus stood back from the roadside, hiding in the shade and when the bus approached, they all seemed to swarm with no fashion of getting on the bus.
You would be thrown from side to side as people pushed their way onto the bus and the ordeal could actually get quite violent! Some people even shouted at each other… it all seemed a bit crazy to me and would make far more sense if they queued in the order they arrived to the stop, but hey-ho, what can you do?
Must-Do Activities in Dubrovnik
Explore the Old Town: An undisputed activity in Dubrovnik is wandering through the historic Old Town. Enclosed by impressive stone walls, the UNESCO World Heritage site is a treasure trove of well-preserved architecture, charming alleys, and bustling squares. Don’t miss landmarks like the Rector’s Palace, Sponza Palace, and the stunning Church of St. Blaise.
Walk the City Walls: Dubrovnik’s ancient walls offer panoramic views of the city and the Adriatic Sea. A walk along the walls allows you to appreciate the city’s layout, architecture, and natural beauty from a unique vantage point. It’s particularly captivating at sunset. The walls are included in the Dubrovnik Pass and the activity is actually the same price as the one-day pass so it is well worth your money!
Visit Fort Lovrijenac: Fort Lovrijenac is an impressive, and immense looking stone structure. You can tell that it once stood strong againts attack and would have been a great vantage point for spotting invaders. This fort offers more magnificent views and is often less crowded than the city walls. It’s also famous for its role as the Red Keep in Game of Thrones.
Enjoy the Beaches: Dubrovnik boasts some beautiful beaches. Banje Beach, just outside the Old Town, is a popular spot with crystal-clear waters and a lively beach club scene. Bellevue Beach is equally as nice – but more pebbly than Banje Beach. Bellevue is perfect for swimming, cliff diving and snorkelling as well as getting yourself a sun tan.
Visit the Dubrovnik Cathedral: Dubrovnik Cathedral is well-worth the visit to admire the stunning architecture, and explore the grand building which houses an impressive treasury and numerous religious artefacts. While perhaps not as impressive as other European Cathedrals, Dubrovnik Cathedral is beautiful in its own way and its quaint size is refreshing in comparison to usual expansive structures.
Take a Cable Car Ride: Ascend Mount Srđ via the Dubrovnik Cable Car for breathtaking panoramic views of the city and surrounding islands. It’s particularly magical during sunset or at night when the city is lit up. The cable car can be more expensive than you might initially think but the views are well worth the money.
Explore Lokrum Island: A short ferry ride from Dubrovnik, Lokrum Island is a natural paradise. Explore the lush botanical gardens, relax on secluded beaches, and discover historical sites like the Benedictine Monastery. Legend has it that the island has actually been cursed by the monks that used to inhabit it; unhappy with the city trying to sell the island, they placed a curse on the island so as they would not attempt to get rid of it again.
Lokrum Island is visible from pretty much every view point in the Old Town and is such a short ferry ride that you would be silly not to visit it when spending 5 days in Dubrovnik.
Enjoy a Sunset Boat Cruise: Dubrovnik’s coastline is even more enchanting when viewed from the sea, especially during the golden hour. Book a sunset boat cruise to witness the city’s skyline bathed in the warm hues of the setting sun. As you sail along the Adriatic, you’ll experience the magic of Dubrovnik in a whole new light.
Many boat tours offer complimentary drinks and snacks, making it a delightful way to end your day in this stunning city. Be sure to have your camera ready for some truly Instagram-worthy moments.
Indulge in Croatian Cuisine: Dubrovnik offers a diverse culinary scene, with a focus on fresh seafood. Try local specialties like black risotto, fresh oysters, and octopus salad at one of the city’s many restaurants. There are many restaurants offering Croatian twists on classics such as octopus burgers and squid ink pizzas – make sure to try some of these too!
Go Sea Kayaking: One of the most highly advertised activities to do on the water in Dubrovnik is sea kayaking. The opportunity to paddle along the city walls and explore hidden coves on a sea kayaking adventure shouldn’t be missed.
Kayaking allows you to experience Dubrovnik’s coastline from a different perspective and maybe even spot some marine life. Tour companies often have single and double kayaks available meaning if you want to share then you can – this is very much worth it in rougher weather!
Day Trips From Dubrovnik
Dubrovnik is an incredible city to explore, but with 5 days in the region, you’ll have plenty of time to explore beyond it. The city’s beauty is only elevated when you visit some of the picturesque areas around it.
If you’re looking to add some adventure and exploration to your Dubrovnik itinerary, day trips to nearby destinations are an absolute must. Let’s take a look at the best day trip options:
Montenegro: The Bay of Kotor
Just a stone’s throw from Dubrovnik lies the Bay of Kotor, a UNESCO-listed fjord that’s often described as one of the most beautiful in Europe.
You can take a scenic drive along the coast or opt for a guided tour to explore this charming bay. Don’t miss the picturesque town of Perast, where you can visit the famous Our Lady of the Rocks islet and take in stunning views of the bay. Continue to Kotor itself, with its well-preserved medieval old town, for a taste of Montenegro’s rich history.
Bosnia and Herzegovina: Mostar
Step back in time by taking a day trip to Mostar in neighbouring Bosnia and Herzegovina. The highlight here is the iconic Stari Most (Old Bridge), a 16th-century Ottoman bridge that spans the Neretva River.
Take the opportunity to marvel at daring locals who dive off the bridge into the river below, a tradition that goes back centuries. Wander through the cobbled streets of the old bazaar and try some traditional Bosnian cuisine. Mostar’s blend of cultures and history will leave a lasting impression.
Again, Mostar can be reached by car, but the better option is to take a guided tour.
Elafiti Islands (Elaphiti Islands)
Escape the crowds by hopping on a boat to the Elafiti Islands. The three main islands, Koločep, Lopud, and Šipan, offer tranquility and natural beauty. You can explore lush landscapes, swim in crystal-clear waters, and even discover medieval ruins. These islands are perfect for a relaxing day away from the hustle and bustle of Dubrovnik.
The Elafiti Islands are reached by boat and there are many tour companies offering excursions. Here is the best one: Elafiti Islands Trip w/ Lunch and Optional Pickup.
Located only 20 kilometres from Dubrovnik, Cavtat is a picturesque coastal town that offers a more laid-back atmosphere. Explore the town’s historic centre, visit the Racic Mausoleum, and relax by the waterfront with a drink in hand. You can also take a scenic walk along the beautiful Cavtat promenade.
There are some lovely beaches and areas to relax in Cavtat – perfect for escaping the crowded ones around Dubrovnik’s Old Town. You can reach the town by car or bus.
Korčula is a gem and a personal favourite day trip from Dubrovnik. A short ferry ride from the city, this island is known for its charming old town, said to be the birthplace of Marco Polo.
Explore narrow streets and historic buildings, then relax on one of the island’s beautiful beaches. Korčula’s vineyards also produce some excellent white wines, so be sure to indulge in a wine tasting session.
5 Days in Dubrovnik: Itinerary
Your first day in Dubrovnik should be spent getting your bearings. If you’re staying in Gruž then spend some time walking about the neighbourhood, going to a bus stop to find which bus routes will take you to the Old Town and locate your closest supermarket.
Tommy Supermarkets and Studenacs are just great convenience shops – even if you’re in catered accommodation you’ll still want to check them out for great snack options and to try the world’s best ice cream!
Check out the Gruž port and see if you can spot any cruise ships. Have a look at the advertisements on boats and see if any of the tours catch your eye.
Then, head to the Old Town to admire the medieval city and walls. Take in the atmosphere on the bustling narrow streets and hunt out some hidden gem restaurants.
Then head back out of the Pile Gate and towards Fort Lovrijenac to discover the medieval fortress and how it once acted as the defence of the Old Town.
Make sure you’ve pre-booked your Dubrovnik Pass online – I recommend getting the 3-day pass if you are staying in Dubrovnik for 5 days. Use it to get to the Old Town by bus or just walk from your accommodation taking in the lovely views.
Begin Day 2 by heading to the Old Town, you’re going to spend the day up in the air – admiring the city beneath you. Exploring the Dubrovnik City Walls is best done in the morning or evening – I recommend the morning as it is cooler and you get a better view across the sea to Lokrum Island.
Walking the walls will take 1.5 to 2 hours not including a stop in the Maritime Museum which you can gain entry to with your Dubrovnik Pass. There are many stalls along the walls also which you may want to stop at for a refreshment.
The views from the Dubrovnik Walls are just incredible and the activity cannot be missed when visiting Dubrovnik.
After your walk, head down to Banje Beach for a spot of swimming and sunbathing – the beach is only a 10 minute walk from the Old Town.
On your walk along the walls you may have spotted the huge cable car which heads hundreds of metres up above the city. Head there in the evening for a beautiful sunset view over the orange rooftops. You can book your tickets for the cable car ride here.
Head back to the Old Town after your thrilling experience and enjoy a wonderful evening meal and perhaps a lavender flavoured gelato!
Start your morning off quite slow and take a walk around your neighbourhood before making your way back to the Old Town for your final day of exploring and utilising your Dubrovnik Pass.
Begin your day of exploring with a visit to the Rector’s Palace, where you can delve into Dubrovnik’s rich history. Then, make your way to the religious marvels of the Old Town, including the Dubrovnik Cathedral and the Franciscan Monastery. Entrance to all sites is included in your pass.
In the afternoon, catch a ferry to Lokrum Island, a nature lover’s paradise just a short boat ride from the Old Town. Explore the island’s lush botanical gardens, stroll through ancient olive groves, and even take a dip in the crystal-clear waters of the Dead Sea, a saltwater lake on the island.
Spend a few hours on Lokrum Island and allow yourself time to relax and view Dubrovnik in all of its glory. Catch the ferry back when you are ready and spend another evening enjoying a delicious meal in one of the Old Town’s many amazing restuarants.
On Day 4 your Dubrovnik Pass will have expired so it’s time to venture outside the city. You should spend you 4th day going somewhere new and maybe even crossing the border.
Choose whether you wan to spend the day on land or at sea and decide between the list of day trips that I have laid out above.
Personally, the competition would be between The Bay of Kotor in Montenegro and a boat trip to the Elafiti Islands. Book your tours to either location below.
🇲🇪 Head to the Bay of Kotor and take in some unforgettable views with this guided tour departing from Dubrovnik. 🐚
🏝️ Head to the Elafiti Islands on an unforgettable boat day trip and enjoy some incredible beach activities.🛥️
If instead you opt for Cavtat or Korčula Island then I suggest that you are back by the late afternoon to enjoy one of Dubrovnik’s most-loved activities.
I recommend booking yourself onto a kayaking tour which will take you to the Betina Cave – a stunning area just a short distance from the Old Town that can only be reached by kayak or by swimming.
Day 5 has a great itinerary lined up – especially for couples. With exploring the Old Town pretty much completed and a busy few days prior, you’ll want to take a day to relax and enjoy the scenery around the city.
Bellevue Beach is the perfect place to spend the day. The pebbled cove is just wonderful and you can see why so many locals come to enjoy the beach too.
There are netted off swimming and diving areas for those that want to concentrate on challenging their personal bests whereas the shoreline is a better place for those who just want to float about and soak up the sun.
There is a cave in the corner of the beach that is just a short swim from the shore and is a great wonder to discover.
Snorkelling at the beach is a great idea, with so many fish to spot and photograph. They are also so curious too and will swim right up beside you to investigate.
A word of caution would be to bring some swim shoes with you if you have them. The rocks under the water are very, very slippery and it can be hard to steady yourself and stand if you want a break. The beach also isn’t the most pleasant to walk across barefoot as it is so pebbly and hot in the summer.
You can easily spend hours upon hours at Bellevue Beach and there are shops and restaurants nearby should you want to grab a bite to eat.
The best evening activity for your final day in Dubrovnik is of course, a sunset cruise along the coastline. There are quite a few companies offering boat tours but having been myself with this company, I highly recommend this tour.
It is just perfect for couples and the vibes were just incredible. The tour company has some very friendly skippers and you get to know them very well by the end of the tour.
With free drinks and the perfect location stops for sunset, there is nothing that you could fault about this tour option.
🌅 Book the perfect sunset cruise from Dubrovnik for couples here. 🌅
FAQs: 5 Days in Dubrovnik
Is 5 days too long for Dubrovnik?
No, 5 days in Dubrovnik can be ideal for thoroughly exploring the city, its surroundings, and nearby attractions while enjoying a relaxed pace. You will also have time for an excursion outside the city – perhaps across borders or to islands in the Adriatic Sea.
How many days is needed in Dubrovnik?
A recommended stay in Dubrovnik is typically 3 to 4 days, allowing time to explore the Old Town, nearby islands, and the beautiful Dalmatian Coast. However, 5 days allows you to explore everything at a more relaxed pace.
Is Dubrovnik cheap or expensive?
Dubrovnik can be relatively expensive, particularly during peak tourist season. Prices for accommodation, dining, and activities tend to be higher compared to other Croatian destinations, but budget options are available.
Is it better to stay in Dubrovnik or Split?
While both cities have so much to offer and are very beautiful, staying in Dubrovnik is a better choice for travellers seeking a well-preserved historic city, stunning coastline, and numerous nearby attractions, including islands and cultural sites.
Is Dubrovnik really touristy?
Yes, Dubrovnik is a popular tourist destination, particularly during the summer months. Its historic Old Town, beaches, and cultural attractions attract visitors from around the world. If you want to avoid crowds, visit the city in the shoulder seasons.
How close are Split and Dubrovnik?
Split and Dubrovnik are approximately 140 miles apart along the scenic Dalmatian Coast, accessible by road, ferry, or domestic flights, making travel between them convenient.
Conclusion: 5 Days in Dubrovnik
In conclusion, spending five days in Dubrovnik is the perfect choice for an enriching and unforgettable Adriatic adventure. Dubrovnik’s charm and cultural richness are best experienced when you allow yourself ample time to immerse in its history, soak in the natural beauty, and savor the local cuisine.
When it comes to accommodation, staying near Gruž Port is a smart move. This area provides a convenient and strategic base to explore Dubrovnik and its surroundings. You’ll have easy access to the Old Town, numerous restaurants, and the bustling port, where you can catch ferries to nearby islands and other coastal destinations.
During your five-day stay, you can explore Dubrovnik’s historic Old Town, uncovering its intricate streets, centuries-old architecture, and vibrant culture. Visiting key sites like the Rector’s Palace, the city walls, and the Dubrovnik Cathedral is a must.
Beyond the city walls, make sure to set aside time for day trips to Lokrum Island, nearby beaches, and perhaps even further excursions to the picturesque Elafiti Islands or the breathtaking Bay of Kotor in Montenegro.
The extra days also allow you to appreciate the finer details of Dubrovnik, savour its renowned seafood cuisine, and enjoy leisurely evenings with stunning Adriatic sunsets. Whether you’re a history buff, a nature enthusiast, or a sunshine lover, Dubrovnik’s diverse offerings make five days an ideal duration to truly experience the city’s magic and its neighbouring treasures.