A nickname like “The Pearl of the Adriatic” sets expectations high, and Dubrovnik does not disappoint. One of the most prominent tourist destinations in the Mediterranean, this Croatian city has enthralled visitors for centuries, with its marble streets and baroque buildings glimmering in the Mediterranean sun. For those looking to enjoy everything this city has to offer, here’s how to spend a day there for less than $25.
Walk through the old town
Walking is one of the best ways to get a feel of a new city. You’re up close and personal with all the sights and sounds, something you can’t do on a car or a bus. There’s no better way to get a taste of the history of Dubrovnik than by taking a walk through the city’s old town. The medieval walled city is extraordinarily well preserved, with Baroque and Renaissance architecture highlighting the way. You’ll feel as if you stepped back in time, with the gated forts and stone walls. As you walk through, you’re bound to come across Stradun, the most famous Dubrovnik city street. Here you can make your way through souvenir shops, galleries, bars, and countless street performances, before the street ends in a lovely square.
Walk around the city
After the close up view of Dubrovnik’s Old Town, it’s time to get a view from the top. Walking around the 2km of walls around the heart of the city is a big reason why so many people take Dubrovnik city breaks. Stretching up to 25m high, the walls are filled with towers and bastions, and you can’t help but marvel at their size and how they’ve stood the test of time. The views of this wonderful country at the top are breath-taking, with the Adriatic Sea on one side, and the terracotta tiles of buildings on the other. The walk will take around an hour, and entry costs $15.
If you plan on walking around the walls, your best bet is to get a citypass card. For around $19, you get entry into the city walls, along with free entry to the Maritime museum, Rector’s Palace, and many more attractions – more for your money!
Where to eat
Dubrovnik caters to boatloads of cruise tourists every day, and as such is not cheap like the rest of Croatia. In order to eat your fill and keep costs down, stay away from the main tourist areas, and go down side streets for hole-in-the-wall restaurants or street food vendors. One of the best places to go is Bistro Riva, in a courtyard by the Gruz harbour. This local favorite has pizza for $3-4, pasta from $5-7, and many more delicious dishes at cheap prices.
Forget the fancy hotels and choose couchsurfing. The idea is to be hosted by a local person who can show you around the city. Buy him/ her a small gift and feel like a member of the house for a day or two.
Dubrovnik is a city that is begging to be explored. So many sights and history inside its walls, and the best part is, you can do it all for under $25 a day.