Dubrovnik on a price range: 12 methods to maintain your Croatian kuna in your pocket

Generally known as “the pearl of the Adriatic” – and King’s Touchdown to Sport of Thrones followers – Dubrovnik is the one hottest vacation spot in Croatia. The excessive demand for this famously fairly city is mirrored in its costs, which are typically greater than elsewhere within the nation.

Journey, lodging and consuming prices in Dubrovnik may appear daunting at first, however tweak your timeline or contemplate the broader area as a substitute of simply the previous city, and you’ll take pleasure in simply as a lot for much less. Listed below are some tips about methods to make the perfect of Dubrovnik on a price range.

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From temperatures to crowds to costs, all the things in Dubrovnik is at its highest between June and August © Roman Babakin / Shutterstock

Time your go to correctly

From temperatures to crowds to costs, all the things in Dubrovnik is at its highest between June and August. In case you are not sure by faculty schedules or company holidays, contemplate April, Might or October in your go to. The excitement is on, sunbathing is a given and the costs are off their peak.

Whereas Dubrovnik hibernates for the higher a part of winter and early spring, there is a pop of life in December, when the town, adorned in festive Christmas decor, phases the Dubrovnik Winter Festival. The principle road of Stradun and lots of squares come alive with street-food stalls, the place locals and uncommon guests collect over sausages and mulled wine. Whereas the climate may not be perfect and lots of retailers and eating places are closed, that is the prospect to see Dubrovnik at its most cost-effective – and most native – time of the 12 months. 

Fly for those who should, however contemplate your choices

Dubrovnik worldwide airport sits half an hour from the city and is beautifully related in the summertime season. Sadly, flying right here isn’t mild in your pockets. In case you are coming for a brief keep and simply visiting Dubrovnik, plan effectively forward, store round and cross your fingers that the gross sales fairy seems to be your means.

Ought to your plans embody touring round Croatia or the area, contemplate making your landing elsewhere and reaching Dubrovnik by automotive, bus or boat. A four-hour drive, Break up is the closest airport in Croatia, however island-hopping is a greater method to go; Zadar is frequented by low-cost operators, and Podgorica in Montenegro has been gaining momentum because the hub in Dubrovnik’s neighboring nation.

Avoid the previous city

The previous city might be the rationale you might be visiting Dubrovnik in any respect, however staying contained in the whitewashed metropolis partitions comes with a number of sacrifices, from monetary to peace and quiet. As an alternative, look to neighborhoods inside quick strolling distance, like Ploče or Boninovo, that are inexpensive however nonetheless on the nicer aspect. The well-connected areas of Lapad, Babin Kuk and Gruž are a 30- to 45-minute stroll from the previous city and have extra inexpensive lodging, primarily in non-public residences. 

Should you’re primarily coming for high quality seashore time somewhat than historical past, tradition or nightlife, contemplate staying alongside the Dubrovnik Riviera and dropping in to go to. Tiny cities like Mlini or Cavat could be a 20- to 30-minute drive away, however the seashores are splendid, the eating places and cafes plentiful, the bus and boat shuttles frequent and the financial savings sizable.

Select self-catering over bed-and-breakfast preparations

Beginning the day with a hearty breakfast is essential, however eating out round Dubrovnik can simply offset the financial savings of that one complimentary meal. Should you’re staying in an residence with a kitchen or a kitchenette, you’ll be able to go the native means, roam the markets, get contemporary, seasonal and native components and dine in.

Purchasing for meals is simple round Dubrovnik, with many giant supermarkets, just like the chains Konzum or Pemo, catering to all preferences – and providing a wide selection of Croatian wines and beers at quite a lot of value factors.  

Dubrovnik has a number of open-air inexperienced markets, and the most important one in Gruž Bay additionally includes a fish market. Going within the morning means a better choice, however visiting towards the tip of the day may prevent a buck, because the sellers are extra eager on bundling up as they get able to pack up and go away.

Plate of grilled fish, chips and salad in Dubrovnik
White-fleshed sea breams and sea bass are regarded and priced as delicacies, whereas oilier bluefish is much less expensive © Flycatcher / Shutterstock

Eat bluefish somewhat than white fish

Croatians group their fish by the colour of its meat and fats content material. As a result of tender and lightweight meat, white-fleshed sea breams and seabass are regarded and priced as delicacies. Go for the oilier bluefish, similar to sardines or smelt – it is full of wholesome omega acids, simply as native and much less expensive, even in eating places.

In eating places, go for the day by day menu, and browse bakeries for picnics   

Menu costs may appear intimidating once you’re visiting Dubrovnik on a price range; nonetheless, many eating places and bistros out and in of the previous city supply day by day menus, or dishes that supply good worth at favorable costs.

Bakeries are the native quick-food go-to, providing something from croissants and puff pastries to meat- and cheese-filled bureks to tasty apple or cherry štrudels. Choose up a couple of and revel in a seashore picnic.

Drink espresso off the primary road

Alongside Stradun, the theatrical previous city thoroughfare, costs come as steep because the towers. Enterprise into the grid of streets that department off the primary one to seek out extra fairly priced cafes, bars and pubs.

Keep away from driving – and parking particularly    

With many one-way, one-laned roads and rivers of buses, shuttles and automobiles headed to the previous city, it’s straightforward to get caught in visitors within the excessive season. And in spite of everything that, for those who’re fortunate sufficient to discover a parking spot within the neighborhood, the meter will set you again wherever between 40KN and 50KN (US$5.50 to $7) per hour.

Picturesque view of Jadrolinija ferry against a mountain backdrop on a sunny day
The general public Jadrolinija ferry connects the Elaphiti islands of Koločep, Lopud and Šipan with Dubrovnik © Darios / Shutterstock

Stroll or take the bus across the city and island-hop on public ferries

Thankfully Dubrovnik is kind of small, and you may cowl a lot floor in an hour’s stroll. Yellow Libertas metropolis buses join the entire city with frequent although often-packed traces. Should you plan on utilizing the bus, get the one-hour tickets upfront from a kiosk; for those who neglect and purchase them on the bus from the driving force, it won’t solely value 3KN extra ($0.50), however you’ll have to cope with frowns for holding up the queue.

Libertas buses additionally connect with locations like Cavtat or Ston (oysters, anybody?), although some traces run on very restricted schedules. The general public Jadrolinija ferry connects the Elaphiti islands of Koločep, Lopud and Šipan with Dubrovnik, and is essentially the most handy and best-priced different to three-island excursions.

Get the Dubrovnik Card for the perfect worth on the town’s well-known sights

Coming to Dubrovnik and never strolling the town partitions is permitted provided that you object to stairs or heights or the ticket value. If the latter is your concern, get the single-day Dubrovnik Card, which grants entry to the town partitions in addition to eight museums and galleries, just like the Rector’s Palace or the MOMA, plus a 24-hour bus go for metropolis traces and extra reductions at chosen retailers and eating places.

The cardboard additionally is available in three- and seven-day variations, with added advantages like suburban rides to Cavat, entry to different museums and a 30% low cost on tickets to Lokrum Island and Mljet Nationwide Park (seven-day).

People wandering through Main Gundulic square (Gundulićeva Poljana), which contains numerous fruits, vegetables shop, restaurants and sculpture of Ivan Gundulić
Dubrovnik’s previous city has many gorgeous locations to see free of charge, together with Gundulić sq. © chettarin / Shutterstock

Savor the various free experiences

Dubrovnik previous city, a labyrinthine grid embraced by the mighty metropolis partitions, holds historic palaces and residences, an previous harbor and lots of gorgeous locations to see. Wander, discover, take the steps, enter the various church buildings and marvel on the pigeon-feed spectacle that takes place day by day at midday in Gundulić sq..

Should you’re prepared to forgo the posh of a solar lounger and simply go together with a seashore towel just like the locals do, high quality seashore time will value you nothing, and climbing to Srđ hill as a substitute of taking the cable automotive will prevent a buck, but reward you with the identical mesmerizing sundown over the town. 

Test for those who’re eligible for VAT return on airport

At 25%, Croatia has one of many highest VAT charges in Europe. In case you are a non-EU resident, you could be eligible for VAT refunds upon taking the products out of the EU. You’ll be able to acknowledge retailers that supply this service by their Tax Free sticker; the minimal spend required in a single buy is €100 ($107).

Typical prices in the summertime season: