Croatia Island Hopping view of Dubrovnik & Lokrum

Best 3 Days in Dubrovnik Itinerary for First Timers

Croatia has everything you would want in a travel destination – perfect to relax, beautiful landscapes, historic architecture and a fun loving culture. This 3 days in Dubrovnik itinerary will give you a taste of this historic city, including some on the water adventure and island hopping.

Most people start or end their Croatian adventure in Dubrovnik, a city in the southern part of Croatia on the Adriatic Sea.

Known for the Old Town surrounded by huge stone walls, Dubrovnik is probably already on your bucket list, especially if you are a Game of Thrones fan.

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Planning your trip to Dubrovnik last minute? Here are the tours and hotels we recommend.

3 Days in Dubrovnik Pin

Best Time to Visit Dubrovnik

The summer months in Dubrovnik are by far the most popular time to visit. July and August are the two warmest and most crowded months to visit.

Although the city will be incredibly lively, these months may be a little bit overwhelming due to the fact that Dubrovnik is on the smaller side.

The shoulder season months of June and September have beautiful warm weather and are a little less crowded.

May and October are also ideal times to visit but the water temperature may be too cold for swimming. You will, however, find hotel deals that make up for it.

About this 3 Days in Dubrovnik Itinerary

Croatia in general can get quite crowded in the summer and Dubrovnik is not a very big city. If you are visiting between June to August, make plans for your accommodations and activities ahead of time.

We’ve listed the best boutique hotels in Dubrovnik as well as the most popular tours. I have experienced and researched how many of these tours operate and which companies will make your trip most memorable.

It’s hard to leave Dubrovnik without having done an excursion on the Adriatic Sea.

There’s a little bit of everything throughout this 3 day itinerary, though Dubrovnik can be explored in one day if you are limited on time.

This Dubrovnik itinerary is set up to see the main sights on the first day and then enjoy the beaches and nearby islands for days 2 and 3.

There are many options for day trips from Dubrovnik. It’s perfectly situated to be the jumping off point for a Balkan adventure, a Croatia island hopping cruise or to see some of our recommended 25 Top Europe bucket list adventures.

3 Days in Dubrovnik Old Town Walls

3 Days in Dubrovnik Itinerary: Day 1

Walk Around the Dubrovnik City Walls – an Itinerary Highlight

The city walls surrounding Dubrovnik’s Old Town are the most famous tourist attraction. In fact, Game of Thrones lovers will recognize the Old Town walls as King’s Landing, a city portrayed in the show.

Walking the walls is a great experience as you will get to see incredible views and historical landmarks. It takes one to two hours to walk all the way around. It’s only 1.2 miles but you’ll stop constantly to take photos.

There are two ways you can walk the city walls, by yourself or on a guided walking tour.

The advantage to going by yourself is that you can set your pace and go any time you want. We went on our own and entered as soon as they opened at 8am.

The benefit to going so early is that you can avoid the crowds that really start to get heavy around 9am. Another time to see the walls with less people is at sunset.

If you prefer a guided tour that will point out sites that you wouldn’t likely see, there are group or private tours

Regardless of how you choose to explore the walls, you will need to buy a ticket which you can buy at the entrance or ahead of time.

Game of Thrones fans are in luck once again as a special 2 hour Game of Thrones Tour with Outer Wall Ticket is offered. Actually people who have never seen the show, love this tour too!

  • Hours: April-May 8am-6:30pm; June-July 8am-7:30pm; August 8am-7pm
  • Cost: Individual – 200kn; Children and Young Adults – 50kn; Students – 50kn
  • Tickets: Book Your Tickets in Advance Here

Visiting Fort Lovrijenac Should Be On Your Dubrovnik Itinerary

Your Dubrovnik city wall ticket includes the entrance fee for Fort Lovrijenac. It is located outside the western wall and is a theatre and fortress.

It’s also one of the Game of Thrones filming locations. The show portrays it as the Red Keep in King’s Landing. There are great views of Dubrovnik Old Town from Fort Lovrijenac.

Old Town Stairs

Stroll Around Old Town and Grab a Bite to Eat

During your 3 days in Dubrovnik, Croatia, you’ll be spending a lot of time in and around the Old Town.

Dubrovnik Old Town is filled with history and culture, not to mention delicious restaurants and lively bars as well. It’s so fun to explore this area because down every alley and street you will find numerous hidden gems.

In terms of food, you can pick any local restaurant or try a popular placed to grab a bite such as Above 5 which is a rooftop restaurant with a great view above Dubrovnik Old Town and the sea.

Azur is also a delicious restaurant right on the Adriatic Sea with asian fusion cuisine.

If you’re looking to eat something quick and filling, try Tutto Bene Pizzeria & Fast Food. It’s very popular among tourists and won’t require much time!

For those with a sweet tooth, some of the most delicious ice cream shops reside in the Old Town. Peppino’s Ice Cream Shop and Sweet Prekala Bar are two of the best.

The Old Town has some pretty interesting historical sites as well. Ploče gate is the 14th century gate and entrance to the Old Town at the end of a stone bridge. Pile gate is at the other end of Old Town and it dates all the way back to 1537.

Right by Pile gate lies the fascinating Franciscan monastery. It consists of a church and pharmacy, and is a great place to explore. 

The gothic Rector’s Palace resides in the Old Town too and the architecture of this palace is pretty breathtaking. Finally, checking out the clock tower is always fun as you can see two bronze figures also known as the “green twins.”

Lokrum Kayak Tour

Experience A Kayaking Adventure During Sunset

You can’t spend 3 days in Dubrovnik without going on a kayak excursion; this is something that can’t be left off of your Dubrovnik itinerary as they are one of the most popular activities here!

You have the option to set off for this adventure in the early morning, midday or even during sunset.

Being that there has been a lot of outdoor activity on day 1, I think it would be best to embark on your kayak excursion in the late afternoon when the sun is not too strong.

Also, who wouldn’t want to be out on the water to watch a beautiful Croatian sunset?

The tour I took and loved is called Dubrovnik: 3-Hour Sunset Sea Kayaking Tour. The trip itself begins in Old Town at the port of Pile. After a quick safety overview, you will embark on your kayaking adventure.

The trip allows for a stop in Betina Cave where you can explore the cave by foot or snorkel. You will paddle all around Lokrum Island and get up close and personal to the beautiful scenery the island has to offer.

On your way back, you’ll be able to see a magnificent sunset as you paddle through the calm waters of the Adriatic Sea.

  • Duration: 3 hours
  • Cost: 33 euro per person
  • Time: 5:30-8:30 p.m.

Enjoy A Late Dinner On Your First of 3 Days in Dubrovnik

After a long afternoon out on the water, I recommend going to a more casual dinner. Taj Mahal Old Town is a great late-night dining spot. Eastern European food is served until midnight. You can sit inside or out and enjoy everything from salad to soup to a delicious assortment of meats.

Gradska Kavana Arsenal Restaurant is also great. I would definitely recommend trying a Croatian martini here if you’re feeling up for it!

Dubrovnik Itinerary Lokrum View

3 Days in Dubrovnik Itinerary: Day 2

Hop On A Ferry To Lokrum Island

Lokrum Island is a great place to be to get away from all the people and crowds in Dubrovnik.

You’ve seen the coast of Lokrum Island on your kayak excursion, and although it looks pretty empty from the coastline, there actually is quite a bit of adventure.

From hiking to swimming and even grabbing a bite to eat, Lokrum Island will not disappoint.

The best way to get to Lokrum Island is to take the ferry from Dubrovnik. It only takes 15 minutes and departs from the Old Town Port.

The ferries cost 150 kuna per person and leave almost every 30 minutes, so timing doesn’t need to be too strict. To check out the ferry times click here.

The island itself has no cars so be prepared to bring your walking shoes. Although the island is small, there is some terrain that will require better shoes.

Once you arrive at Lokrum Island, there are a few fun activities you can do. Towards the center of the island is a small, salt lake that resembles the Dead Sea.

Don’t forget your bathing suit because you’ll definitely want to float around at this spot. Aside from the lake, you can swim in the sea if you choose. The waters are generally calm and relatively warm.

A great, scenic view of Dubrovnik can be found at the highest point on Lokrum Island called Fort Royal.

There are very few restaurants on the island, so I would recommend trying out the popular Lacroma Restaurant. Enjoy the delicious food and views as some peacocks may even show up!

  • Duration: 15 minutes
  • Cost: 150 kuna (22 euro)
  • Pickup Point: Dubrovnik (Old Town Port) Ferry Port
Banje Beach

Take a Break From Your Dubrovnik Itinerary & Relax On The Beach

After a long, fun day at Lokrum Island, follow it up with some beach time. There are ton of beaches around Dubrovnik, but to keep you closer to the Old Town, check out Banje Beach.

This beach is pretty open and has a nice area for sunbathing. There is also a beach restaurant & bar to grab some food or drinks and cool off.

Keep in mind that all of the beaches in Dubrovnik are pebble beaches and not sand, so definitely bring a towel along or rent a chair.

If you want to get a little bit further from Old Town, Bellevue Beach is pretty. It is a larger beach than most and offers a nice place to swim and sunbathe.

The crystal clear water is absolutely beautiful, so lay back and enjoy the Croatian sun! The photo above is the view from Bellevue beach.

After an already long day on Lokrum Island, you may want something even more relaxing than the beach: drinks!

Buza bar is located cliffside, right outside the city walls and it is a beautiful place to grab a cold drink during the day or at sunset.

Sit outside, enjoy the view over the Sea, and sip on a nice cold drink. Bring cash with you as Buza does not accept cards.

Dubrovnik Itinerary Bellevue Beach

Your 3 Days in Dubrovnik Should Include the Cable Car at Sunset

The Dubrovnik Cable Car is a very popular way to see a great view of Dubrovnik and the Sea. It would be best to take the cable car up right before the sun sets and enjoy the beautiful surrounding landscapes.

The cable car itself doesn’t take long at all and it is open almost all day during the summer months.

After arriving at the top of the mountain, there is a restaurant called Restaurant Panorama where you can enjoy a delicious meal and incredible view as well.

Making a reservation ahead of time during the summer months is important because of how crowded the restaurant can get.

  • Hours: April 9am-8pm; May 9am-9pm; June-August 9am-12am; September 9am-10pm
  • Cost: Round-trip adult – 170,00 kuna; round-trip children (ages 4-12) – 60,00 kuna
3 Days in Dubrovnik Cable Car Ride
Photo credit: Natasha de Vere

Drinks in Old Town

After a great day exploring Dubrovnik and its surroundings, grabbing a drink in Old Town is always the way to go and should certainly be a part of your Dubrovnik itinerary!

I recommend checking out NoneNina Bar. It is in the center of Old Town and has some of the yummiest, fun drinks! You can sit outside and enjoy the city lights or head on in for more of a bar scene.

3 Days in Dubrovnik Itinerary: Day 3

Depending on the amount of time you have in Dubrovnik or Croatia overall, you might want to do some island hopping. It’s great to get out on the water and each island has it’s own charm.

We wrote a whole post about our Croatia Island Hopping Adventure that will give you all the details you need to know whether you just want to do a day trip or a full week long trip.

If you just have time for a day trip, follow the day 3 itinerary early here. If you prefer to visit nearby Montenegro or Bosnia instead, read the Best Day Trips from Dubrovnik section below.

On The Last of 3 Days in Dubrovnik, Take A Ferry to Korcula Island.

There are many islands to visit off the coast of Croatia, but Korcula would be the best for a day trip from Dubrovnik. The island itself is a great place to explore and relax being that much of Croatia’s wine comes from Korcula.

In terms of getting to the island, there are 3 to 4 ferries a day from Dubrovnik during the summer months. Every day a ferry will leave at 7 am and the following ferry departure times differ each day.

The trip will take you about 2 hours, so you will still have all day to explore this beautiful island. Click here to check out the ferry schedule and purchase tickets in advance.

  • Duration: 2 hours
  • Cost: around 130 kuna (19 euro)
  • Pickup Point: Dubrovnik Ferry Port

Grab A Nice Breakfast

Since your day started on the early side, enjoy a delicious breakfast after a long ferry ride at Creperia Sempre Dritto. They have outdoor seating and some of the best breakfast crepes.

If you prefer something to grab and go, try Cafe Bar STEP for a cappuccino and fresh croissant. The majority of Korcula’s restaurants are located in Old Town, so it’s the best spot to eat.

3 Days in Dubrovnik Korcula Day Trip

Rent A Bike And Explore Old Town Korcula

You can either choose to walk around Old Town Korcula or rent a bike for the day. Renting bikes is always a fun way to explore a new city.

The best rental shop is called Titan Rent. They also rent scooters and cars. The shop is conveniently located in the heart of Old Town Korcula.

One of the most famous sites to see in Korcula is Marco Polo’s house. Take a stroll by the house or go in and walk around. History lovers will enjoy the opportunity to see Marco Polo’s birthplace even if it’s not 100% confirmed.

Korcula Town Museum is also something that history fanatics will appreciate. A four story palace, the Korcula Town Museum has interesting artifacts as far back as the 3rd Century B.C., when the Greeks were in Korcula.

Enjoy A Food & Drink Tasting

There a variety of food and/or wine tours that you can enjoy in Korcula. I recommend the Taste of Korcula by Bike Tour (Food & Drink Tasting), especially if you hadn’t rented bikes to explore the Old Town. If you want to do a walking wine tasting tour or even a boat tour.

The reason I like the Taste of Korcula Bike Tour best is because you will be able to try a bunch of different foods such as honey that is local to Korcula.

Also, being that the island is known for its wine, you will have the chance to learn about and try some delicious wines as well. The biking is also a ton of fun and allows you to see some of the more rural areas of the island.

  • Price: 68€ per person
  • Time: May – October 2:45pm-7:00pm
  • Group size: 2-10 people

7:25 p.m. – Catch the Ferry Back to Dubrovnik & Enjoy A Late Dinner

The last ferry to leave Korcula departs at 7:25 p.m, so make sure you get back in time! You should arrive back to the Dubrovnik port at around 9:30 p.m.

I recommend grabbing a late dinner near the port so that you don’t have the trouble of getting back into Old Town.

A great, fine dining restaurant nearby is called Orka Restaurant. There are a ton of seafood options and the presentation are great.

Amorfa is also nearby. Here you can enjoy a nice Mediterranean cuisine or a bowl of pasta as your 3 days in Dubrovnik comes to an end.

Dubrovnik Itinerary At a Glance:

  • Day 1 – Old Town, City Walls, Kayak in the Adriatic Sea
  • Day 2 – Lokrum Island, Dubrovnik Beaches, Cable Car
  • Day 3 – Korcula Island, Old Town, Food & Drink Tasting Tour

Best Day Trips From Dubrovnik

We did an entire Balkan road trip for a week but you can easily visit any of the places we went on a day trip. Either rent a car and go on your own or take one of these recommended trips.

  • Montenegro Day Trip – Montenegro was our surprise hit last year. We LOVED this gorgeous country. If you’ve never been, you just have to make time to spend at least one day there. This tour is 11-12 hours and you’ll see the charming town of Perast, take a short boat ride to Our Lady of the Rocks church, visit the walled city of Kotor, and the gorgeous seaside town of Budva.
  • Mostar and Kravice Waterfalls Tour – an 11 hour day trip to Mostar, Bosnia followed by a visit to the spectacular Kravice waterfalls. There are other tours that are a full day Mostar tour but it’s such a small town and it would be a shame to miss the Kravice waterfalls.
  • Elafiti Island Cruise, Lunch and Snorkel Trip – Visiting the Elafiti Islands is nice if you are looking to get out on the water for a day. You will spend the day sailing to 3 different islands in the Dubrovnik archipelago, have a buffet lunch and have time to visit a beach for sunning, swimming and snorkeling.

Related Post: Croatia Island Hopping for Every Type of Traveler

How to Get to Dubrovnik

Dubrovnik has an international airport (DBV) located about 20 to 30 minutes from the heart of the city. Taxi’s are super easy to take from the airport to your desired destination. Often your hotel or Airbnb will arrange a pick up for you.

If you are coming to Dubrovnik from Split, you can either take a ferry to island hop your way to Dubrovnik or the bus for a direct trip.

The bus from Split to Dubrovnik takes a little bit over 4 hours and costs between 13 and 20 euro. There are quite a few bus options throughout the day, particularly in the high and shoulder season. You can look at the schedule here.

Coming from the Croatia islands, particularly Hvar, the best way to get to Dubrovnik is simply by ferry. They depart from Hvar once or twice a day and will cost around 220 kuna. Click here for the ferry schedule.

Where to Stay for 3 Days in Dubrovnik


Although Dubrovnik does not have many big resorts, there are some very nice, relatively large, luxury hotels. If you like to sit at the pool and enjoy your hotel amenities, these are some great options for your 3 days in Dubrovnik.

We have an entire post on the Best Boutique hotels in Dubrovnik that will ensure you have a lovely vacation exploring the surroundings and returning to a gorgeous hotel with plenty to do.

  • Hotel Excelsior – A beachfront luxury hotel with an indoor pool, hot tubs, restaurants and 24 hour room service.
  • Villa Dubrovnik – Also located on the sea, the beautiful property has a spa and sunbathing area by the water. It also includes free car transfers to Old Town Dubrovnik.
  • Hotel Bellevue Dubrovnik – Wake up to views of the Adriatic Sea from every room of this modern, chic hotel that’s overlooking Bellevue Beach and walking distance to Old Town. They also have a great restaurant.
  • Villa Orsula – This boutique hotel has a private beach, panoramic views and a luxury spa to relax.

Well Located Vacation Rentals at a Great Price

If hotels are little bit too pricey, there are some absolutely stunning vacation rentals around Dubrovnik. Enjoy the incredible views along with full kitchens and WiFi.

  • Apartment Harmony – A 1 bed 1 bath completely charming apartment with city views and close to the beach.
  • Apartments Cava DubrovnikA gorgeous 4 guest apartment with a beautiful balcony and views of Dubrovnik.
  • Scalini PalaceStudio suites in the heart of Old Town with a kitchen, daily continental breakfast and great views.

3 Days in Dubrovnik Old Town Walls

How to Get Around Dubrovnik

We decided to rent a car in Dubrovnik since it was the beginning of a Baltic road trip. Discover Cars had the best rates (we tried every company) and the rental process was really easy.

Dubrovnik is very walkable, depending on where you stay of course. All of the hotels and Airbnbs I recommended are either close enough to walk, or have free transport from the hotel.

The bus is also a great option for getting around the city. Click here to see the bus stop map, tickets and times. There are also uber drivers and taxi stands around the city for even more convenience. For Old Town, the best taxi stand is by Pile gate.

We hope you enjoy your time in Dubrovnik as much as we did and find this 3 day itinerary to be helpful. If you have any questions about the information here, leave a comment below and we will reply.

Dubrovnik is such a charming town full of history and intrigue. You will absolutely love it!

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  • Reply
    Deborah Boland
    February 18, 2020 at 10:09 pm

    I heard it was beautiful and you’ve confirmed it! I love cruising and have noticed that Croatia a stop in the summer, so maybe I will visit this July. Thanks for such a detailed report!

    • Reply
      February 19, 2020 at 12:01 am

      Sounds like a great trip. I hope you enjoy your stop in Croatia.

  • Reply
    Phyllis Lerner
    February 18, 2020 at 7:29 pm

    I never thought about traveling to this part of Europe but your post paints such a beautiful picture I might have to rethink!

    • Reply
      February 19, 2020 at 12:00 am

      Hope you get a chance to visit. I’m planning on sharing more, including our trip to Montenegro. It’s so beautiful in the Balkans.

  • Reply
    Kim Cook
    February 17, 2020 at 4:18 pm

    I had no idea that Croatia would be so beautiful. The architecture is amazing. Thank you for sharing

  • Reply
    February 13, 2020 at 1:26 pm

    The architecture is amazing!!

    Effortlessly Sophisticated

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