Dubrovnik - ship excursion or on my own?

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#1
MN
70 Posts
Joined Feb 2009
Wondering if we need to schedule a ship excursion, or can we tour Dubrovnik on our own? Any ideas/suggestions are welcome.
#2
88,630 Posts
Joined Jul 2000
This city is very easy to do on your own. Either take the ships shuttle or a taxi to downtown and I would visit the walled city. There is an entrance fee and it is a great place to visit and you will get some nice views of the sea and the city. Afterwards you can walk around the area that is adjacent to the walled city.

Keith
#3
Santa Teresa, NM
120 Posts
Joined Feb 2012
I know Dubrovnik Travel lady is going to disagree but I loved Dubrovnik and if you're like me, a middle class guy who will be in debt for years after buying a family of 5 a European Cruise, you're looking for places to save a little.

Dubrovnik can be that place. A round-trip shuttle ticket from port for 8 Euros will take you to the Heart of this beautiful city. Once there, you can walk into the Old Town, which is where you want to spend your short time in port. There is loads to see and do walking around. Brilliant shopping, beautiful fairy tale like pictures, the town is so clean compared to other places, and there are small tours you can buy once you're in the town that are affordable compared to other European port.

For 10 Euro, my wife and I went on a small boat ride around an island into a cave. We took a million pictures.

I have a love affair with Dubrovnik and I used it as a DIY port. Maybe if I bought an excursion, I would have loved it more. However, this was a very expensive vacation for me. I am not wealthy by any means. And any port that was DIY convienient, I did on my own. Dubrovnik can be that place for the budget conscience travel. And you'll still love it.
#4
Cavtat, Croatia
1,599 Posts
Joined Jan 2009
Originally posted by kickballpro
I know Dubrovnik Travel lady is going to disagree but I loved Dubrovnik and if you're like me, a middle class guy who will be in debt for years after buying a family of 5 a European Cruise, you're looking for places to save a little.

Dubrovnik can be that place. A round-trip shuttle ticket from port for 8 Euros will take you to the Heart of this beautiful city. Once there, you can walk into the Old Town, which is where you want to spend your short time in port. There is loads to see and do walking around. Brilliant shopping, beautiful fairy tale like pictures, the town is so clean compared to other places, and there are small tours you can buy once you're in the town that are affordable compared to other European port.

For 10 Euro, my wife and I went on a small boat ride around an island into a cave. We took a million pictures.

I have a love affair with Dubrovnik and I used it as a DIY port. Maybe if I bought an excursion, I would have loved it more. However, this was a very expensive vacation for me. I am not wealthy by any means. And any port that was DIY convienient, I did on my own. Dubrovnik can be that place for the budget conscience travel. And you'll still love it.
Actually I do not disagree that Dubrovnik can be a DIY port. Sure it can, but missing out on the stories, learning the history and experiencing the spirit of the town can be worth the price of a guide. There are few who know or understand much about the history of Croatia, especially many Americans who have only just begun to visit here. I have been coming to the Dalmatian Coast for the past 40 years and finally made Dubrovnik my retirement home and have seen the changes over the years, which have been many.
I do believe your saving for a European cruise was a lovely gift you gave to your family. And for those who are budget minded, again there are still many guides who are not on the high end, much unlike the ships excursions. I do hope that someday you may be able to return to our area, the outlying areas are also very interesting.
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#5
Near Orlando but California Dreaming
14,305 Posts
Joined Sep 2002
Originally posted by Keith1010
This city is very easy to do on your own. Either take the ships shuttle or a taxi to downtown and I would visit the walled city. There is an entrance fee and it is a great place to visit and you will get some nice views of the sea and the city. Afterwards you can walk around the area that is adjacent to the walled city.

Keith
There is no entrance fee to visit the area within the walls, only to walk on the walls.
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#6
Columbus, Ohio
18,630 Posts
Joined Mar 2006
Originally posted by ducklite
There is no entrance fee to visit the area within the walls, only to walk on the walls.
Agree no fee to enter this wonderful walled city. YES, there is a cost, which can be paid with a credit card, to do the wall walk. I rate the wall walk super highly as a must-do, assuming things are not too hot and crowded.

As noted below, the cab option from our ship got us BOTH an introduction/overview for the city, its history, setting AND a connection between the docking area and the walled city entrance. Check out this posting:

Super loved Dubrovnik!!! See more details and lots of great visual samples at:
http://boards.cruisecritic.com/showthread.php?t=1439227

THANKS! Enjoy! Terry in Ohio


Did a June 7-19, 2011, Solstice cruise from Barcelona that had stops in Villefranche, ports near Pisa and Rome, Naples, Kotor, Venice and Dubrovnik. Enjoyed great weather and a wonderful trip. Dozens of wonderful visuals with key highlights, tips, comments, etc., on these postings. We are now at 91,280 views for this live/blog re-cap on our first sailing with Celebrity and much on wonderful Barcelona. Check these postings and added info at:
http://www.boards.cruisecritic.com/s....php?t=1426474


We started in Dubrovnik with a local cab driver who gave us a “panoramic tour”, including crossing their unique bridge near the main cruise ship docking area. He called this bridge their “Golden Gate” like in San Francisco. It is nine years old. Then we drove up and up through narrow twisting roads to the high point overlooking Dubrovnik and near the cable car high station. From this point, we could also see part of Bosnia and and Montenegro. The “super star” view was down below with this angle of the harbor and walled city. Beautiful!!!:




Here is the view of the Cable Car going down from the high point over Dubrovnik with interesting areas and islands west of the city shown. This cable car has been re-built since the early 1990’s war years. It’s a dramatic coastline with great views here!:




This is Dubrovnik’s Pile Gate as the grand western entrance to the walled city.:




This is a view of the historic Dubrovnik wall at an upward and outward point built on top of the rocks and where it overlooks the Adriatic Sea. Walking this wall is a wonderful and unique way to sample and see up close and personal what makes this city so special.:




This is the Stradun or main shopping street of Dubrovnik as it stretches to the clock tower. The buildings along this way all have shutter painted in the same color. Don’t missing walking the wall in this great town.:




For our lunch at Komarda restaurant, here is the view from our table. Could you ask for a better location on a perfect weather day? It is about 1000 feet just east of the Ploce gate. You can go to this website in order to see lots more about
http://komarda.hr/index.php?lang=en:


#7
Near Orlando but California Dreaming
14,305 Posts
Joined Sep 2002
Originally posted by Dubrovniktravelady
Actually I do not disagree that Dubrovnik can be a DIY port. Sure it can, but missing out on the stories, learning the history and experiencing the spirit of the town can be worth the price of a guide. There are few who know or understand much about the history of Croatia, especially many Americans who have only just begun to visit here. I have been coming to the Dalmatian Coast for the past 40 years and finally made Dubrovnik my retirement home and have seen the changes over the years, which have been many.
I do believe your saving for a European cruise was a lovely gift you gave to your family. And for those who are budget minded, again there are still many guides who are not on the high end, much unlike the ships excursions. I do hope that someday you may be able to return to our area, the outlying areas are also very interesting.
I generally find your information very helpful, but in this case I don't agree. There are plenty of books and articles one can read on the history of Croatia and Dubrovnik. Armed with some research, a good map, and a list of places to see based on that research, I don't think a guide is essential for Dubrovnik.

That said, if you aren't willing to invest the time to research prior to visiting, a guide will absolutely add to your visit.
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Past Cruises...
April 2014--Paul Gauguin to French Polynesia
June 2012--Windstar Wind Surf Back-To-Back, Rome to Venice to Athens
October 2011--Disney Dream Bahamas
October 2005--RCCL Mariner Western Caribbean
August 2002--Disney Magic Eastern Caribbean

Three weeks in Europe (two on a ship) with a 20" roll aboard and a tote bag--packing list here.
My all in a 20" wheeled bag for a warm weather cruise packing list here
20" rolling bag packing list for two weeks in a cool/cold climate here.
#8
Greenville, SC, USA
52,226 Posts
Joined Apr 2000
Originally posted by ducklite
I generally find your information very helpful, but in this case I don't agree. There are plenty of books and articles one can read on the history of Croatia and Dubrovnik. Armed with some research, a good map, and a list of places to see based on that research, I don't think a guide is essential for Dubrovnik.

That said, if you aren't willing to invest the time to research prior to visiting, a guide will absolutely add to your visit.
I suspect that most of those that won't invest the time to learn about a port before visiting, won't get much out of the guie beyond the location of the nearest McDonalds
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Paul
#9
Near Orlando but California Dreaming
14,305 Posts
Joined Sep 2002
Originally posted by paul929207
I suspect that most of those that won't invest the time to learn about a port before visiting, won't get much out of the guie beyond the location of the nearest McDonalds
Where I was hoping to get a decent cup of "American" coffee in Rome. No luck. Desperate measures for desperate folks.
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Past Cruises...
April 2014--Paul Gauguin to French Polynesia
June 2012--Windstar Wind Surf Back-To-Back, Rome to Venice to Athens
October 2011--Disney Dream Bahamas
October 2005--RCCL Mariner Western Caribbean
August 2002--Disney Magic Eastern Caribbean

Three weeks in Europe (two on a ship) with a 20" roll aboard and a tote bag--packing list here.
My all in a 20" wheeled bag for a warm weather cruise packing list here
20" rolling bag packing list for two weeks in a cool/cold climate here.
#10
Cavtat, Croatia
1,599 Posts
Joined Jan 2009
Originally posted by paul929207
I suspect that most of those that won't invest the time to learn about a port before visiting, won't get much out of the guie beyond the location of the nearest McDonalds
I am so pleased to report that Dubrovnik has neither a McDonalds or Starbucks.

And yes I do agree, if one is willing to research a guide is not necessary. It appears that many do not want to spend time doing any research. It is that group who would benefit from a guided tour.
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#11
South Africa
1,069 Posts
Joined Aug 2003
I have started reading about the history of this beautiful country, Croatia (as well as other countries that formed part of the former Yugoslavia) and find it fascinating.

In addition we have hired a guide (just for 2 hours) to help us learn more from a more personal perspective. The additional cost (in the scheme of things) is not huge (100Euros for our party of 7).

Dubrovniktravelady - we can't wait to be there!
#14
California
6 Posts
Joined Mar 2012
Originally posted by Dubrovniktravelady
Actually I do not disagree that Dubrovnik can be a DIY port. Sure it can, but missing out on the stories, learning the history and experiencing the spirit of the town can be worth the price of a guide. There are few who know or understand much about the history of Croatia, especially many Americans who have only just begun to visit here. I have been coming to the Dalmatian Coast for the past 40 years and finally made Dubrovnik my retirement home and have seen the changes over the years, which have been many.
I do believe your saving for a European cruise was a lovely gift you gave to your family. And for those who are budget minded, again there are still many guides who are not on the high end, much unlike the ships excursions. I do hope that someday you may be able to return to our area, the outlying areas are also very interesting.
I am going to visit Dubrovnik on November 10th during my honeymoon cruise and we are trying to decide what we should do. We will be in port from 9am to 6pm. We are trying to do some things on our own, but are willing to take a tour if one is recommended. Since we have never been to this port and not sure we will ever be able to go back, what tour would you recommend: A tour to Ston & Trsteno or Dubrovnik's City Walls ?
We basically want to know if there is something you would tell someone not to miss when visiting this port, even if its not these tours
#15
Cavtat, Croatia
1,599 Posts
Joined Jan 2009
Originally posted by Monty's Mom
I am going to visit Dubrovnik on November 10th during my honeymoon cruise and we are trying to decide what we should do. We will be in port from 9am to 6pm. We are trying to do some things on our own, but are willing to take a tour if one is recommended. Since we have never been to this port and not sure we will ever be able to go back, what tour would you recommend: A tour to Ston & Trsteno or Dubrovnik's City Walls ?
We basically want to know if there is something you would tell someone not to miss when visiting this port, even if its not these tours
You may want to wait to see how our weather will be during your visit here. Normally November is our wettest month, if this is true for you arrival date I would not attempt to navigate the city wall during a wind or rain storm.
Fact is the entrance fee to walk the wall is 70 Kuna per person, approximate $11 at the exchange rate today. Do keep in mind that all sites will only be open from 0900 until 1500 during November.
Again I would not even bother with Ston and Trsteno in November, as Ston will be totally closed down for winter hibernation. The gardens of Trsteno, interesting during the summer season, is not a great choice during the off season.
Personally I would walk the wall, spend time at Rupe Museum, Rectors Palace, visit the Franciscan Monastery to view the old pharmacy and the Dominican Monastery is a masterpiece. Sponza palace is home to the war memorial of the 1991 homeland war, which should not be missed as the video of the actual shelling of the town is shown nonstop. If the winds are not blowing, a trip on the cable car to the top of Mt. Srd and its breathtaking view should not be missed. However the cable car will not run if there is poor weather.
Do it all, or pick the sites which may interest you. Keep in mind, sunset at that time of year will be about 1630...
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#16
Toronto, ON, Fort Lauderdale, FL
4,273 Posts
Joined Oct 2004
How is the weather in late October?
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Benny

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#17
Cavtat, Croatia
1,599 Posts
Joined Jan 2009
Originally posted by TorontoTL
How is the weather in late October?
Who knows for sure, it has been a very strange year for weather. Last year we had a long hot summer, well into November. Normally September and October are lovely fall weather, November is wet and windy, but nothing seems to be normal these days. June this year has been hot and humid, much like our August weather...what is normal these days!
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