One way to do Dubrovnik

Continuing my series of  ‘One  way to do….’  this offering is for Dubrovnik in Croatia.   It sits on the Dalmatian coast of the Adriatic Sea and is one of the most popular port visits in the Mediterranean.

My wife and I have visited  the historic Croatian town on four occasions, berthing alongside 3 times and having to tender once. The visit covered in this thread is based on our latest visit.

For those for whom Dubrovnik may be a first visit I will add a second comment on ‘walking the walls’,  which is probably the most popular activity in Dubrovnik.

As previously stated, cruise ships either berth alongside at the port of Gruz, which is a neighbourhood of Dubrovnik, some 2.5Km from the ‘Old Town’…

The approach to Gruz

…or anchor just off the coast near the ‘Old Town’, under the gaze of the town walls, and tender their passengers in to the old harbour ….

From Gruz there is  a good bus and taxi service operating just a short distance from the cruise terminal and that is how for this visit we made our way into Dubrovnik. We had planned to take the cable car situated on the outskirts of the ‘Old Town’ walls and visit Fort Imperial which is situated some 400m up  Mount Srd.

I would add here that a quick taxi into Dubrovnik will pay dividends in beating the crowds, particularly if the route that we took is to be followed. We departed the ship at the earliest opportunity, grabbed the first taxi available, opting to share with two other passengers – at a cost of €10 total –  and headed for the cable car station. Hey presto, we were on our way up well before the first coaches even arrived.

The plan had worked and we were soon being transported up to Fort Imperial by Cable car…

There were  stunning views over the walled town as we ascended up Mount Srd,  including beautiful  vistas of  the surrounding coastline, and, on a good day, well into neighbouring Bosnia.

The upper cable car station houses a café, restaurant and shopping complex along with further views over the creation hinterland…

A short walking distance from the Cable Car station is Fort imperial. The Fort  houses a museum that covers the siege and bombardment of Dubrovnik in October 1991.

and is well worth a visit.

We spent around two hours in and around the summit and museum before descending back down in the cable car. It is possible to do the journey on foot but, I’m, sure all will agree, that is some climb.

There is an entrance gate to the walled town just to the right of the lower cable car station – clearly visible   diagonally opposite the car park in the first cable car picture above.

Once through the gate one will find a veritable labyrinth of alleyways

…but as long as one keeps descending the main arterial street of the town cannot be missed…

Alternatively, when alighting the cable car simply follow the outside wall to the right until arriving at the main entrance to the inner town…

If the intention is to ‘walk the walls’ then an admission ticket is necessary from the ticket office just inside to the right and the main access to the walls is on the left of the above entrance…

We chose an anti-clockwise route – heading towards the seaward side – and completed the full circumnavigation in just over an hour…

…taking in the many views both into the town…

…and outside…

…as we continued our circumnavigation…

It should be noted that there is a second entrance – or exit point if so wished – near the old harbour, and roughly half way around. Anyway, we continued on what now became an upward gradient …

and enjoyed the panoramic views across the Old Town…

…before descending from the walls at our start point and heading off in search of a well deserved lunch.

One of the great features of Dubrovnik is its restaurants and in particular, its seafood. Restaurants abound from the main streets to the side streets…

…but our favourite has always been the Karmen Restaurant, with its lofty patio ideal for people watching…

A suggestion for something unusual for those who enjoy walking and whose ship is berthed at Gruz.  Ship’s coaches, taxis and local buses all depart from just outside the main entrance to the Old Town…

Taxi fares are clearly promulgated…

…but look at the road heading off up the slight incline. It’s a great scenic walk passing some very interesting buildings and only about 30 – 40 minutes to Gruz…

…where a gentle amble along the harbour side makes for a pleasant finale to a Dubrovnik visit…

For those who maybe have visited Dubrovnik on a previous cruise another option that we have tried is to take one of the ferry boats that operate a regular service out of the ‘old Harbour’ and spend a half day in Cavtat:  an attractive town whose seafront is filled with shops and restaurants  …

where again we can vouch for the seafood, in particular the Sardine Pate at the  Restaurant Dolium…

http://www.tripadvisor.co.uk/ShowUserReviews-g303804-d1172918-r119124170-Dolium_Restaurant-Cavtat_Dubrovnik_Neretva_County_Dalmatia.html

I hope readers have found this review of Dubrovnik both interesting and informative. I don’t think we would ever tire of visiting Dubrovnik, it always has a highly charged atmosphere and the opportunity to sample some excellent sea food always makes Dubrovnik a worthwhile visit.

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