If you are heading into Dubrovnik, Croatia on a cruise there’s so much to do and such a short time to stay there. Usually a cruise line will arrive in Dubrovnik at 7:00 am and depart as early as 4:00 pm, with an all-aboard time of 3:30 pm.
If you do your research ahead of time, you can explore this city on your own and not have to be herded around like cattle through a cruise line excursion.
Better yet, you can take a private tour with an excursion company who does one-on-one shore excursions, Viator. They are affordable, charge less than the cruise lines and back a promise that if you miss your ship because of their excursion, they will get you to the next port, at their expense.
Here are some cool things worth checking out:
- Tour the old city. Inside the old city walls of Dubrovnik are over 30 churches, museums, historic exhibitions and good eats. If you do old city on your own you can walk there from the cruise port or a cab is 10 euros for up to four people. You can walk here from the ship and it’s free to enter.
- Walk the city wall. These walls around the old city date back to the 13th century. The wall runs uninterrupted 1.24-miles around the city and stands as high as 25 meters in some sections. Give yourself plenty of time if you decide to walk to wall, bring water and comfortable walking shoes. You can expect to pay $12 USD to walk the wall.
Ride the Cable Car to up to Mount SRD in Dubrovnik. You can catch the car from Old City and ride it up 778 meters to a picturesque location with a restaurant and shops. This car is $15 USD round trip and $7 USD for kids, tickets are available for purchase at Old City or on Mount SRD.
- Visit Cavtat by private tour or cab, but go early. This quaint little village outside of Dubrovnik dates back to the 6th century BC, is a 20-minute ride from the cruise port, and costs 20 euros each way. Located 20-minutes south of the pier, a lot of the cruise line tours go here so if you are planning on venturing to Cavtat, you may want to consider being first off the ship, starting your day there and enjoying a cappuccino along the harbor and then getting out before the crowds rush in. You can enjoy free wifi at a few of the outside cafes. It’s a small town that gets easily flooded with people but well worth the visit.
- Kayak the Adriatic Sea. Burn off the calories that you’ve packed on your whole cruise by renting kayaks and doing a guided kayak tour paddling around the old Dubrovnik city walls. See the outside of the city walls by water, up close and personal, as well as a snorkeling adventure.
You may also want to consider purchasing a 24-hour Dubrovnik city card for $20 USD. This card includes free entrance to cultural institutions and public transportation rides. Included is: City Walls, Maritime Museum, Cultural-historical exhibits, Natural History Museum, Art Gallery, Galleries, Ethnographic museum and others.
A lot of places in Dubrovnik take the euro, credit card and their local currency, the kuna. I gave you prices in USD so you can get a general idea of the cost.