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Dubrovnik avoiding cruise crowds et al

We're in Dubrovnik on a cruise stop (Monday, April 22) and fortunately it is one of the longer stops as we'll be in Dubrovnik until 22:00h. I'm aware when cruise ships are in town, it is "wall-to-wall" people. In the morning we're planning on taking a bus from the cruise port to the Lapad area (I hope I've got the name right), the peninsula to the northwest of the historic city. If the guidebook I have is up to date, I think Bus 4 runs from the cruise port and onto the peninsula. Once there, I'm assuming we can transfer to Bus 6 and/or 9 to see more of the area, and then travel on 6 or 9 into the city. As our ship arrives at 9:00h, after a couple hours riding/walking the peninsula, we plan to arrive at the historic city around 13:00-14:00h and spend the afternoon and evening there. This plan leads me to several questions:

  • Do the bus routes I've noted 4, 6 and 9 run where I think they run and can a day-pass be purchased on the first bus we board that would be valid for our time in Dubrovnik (Also, is there an ATM near the cruise terminal where we can get local currency)?
  • Does our itinerary make sense, e.g. morning away from the historic center, afternoon and evening in the center?
  • Recommendations for lunch in the Lapad Babin Kuk, Boninovo or Pile areas?
  • Recommendations for dinner in the historic city?
  • What would be the best time to avoid a long queue for the gondola to Srd?

Thanks for any recommendations.

Posted by
6714 posts

Just curious what guidebook you're using (I used the Rough Guide for Croatia). What does it say about attractions outside the walled city? I believe there is at least a museum or beach (and even a large park, looking at Google maps) that could be of interest (and not to forget the cable car to the top, which sadly I missed altogether), but the Lapad and Babin Kuk areas struck me as very residential and full of hotels to accommodate folks who can't stay in the historic center. So what are you planning on seeing away from the center? The center itself is very small (the main drag Stradun is about 1/4 mile or more) but you can easily spend a whole day there if you walk the walls and check out all the interesting, small museums. I'm just afraid you'll give the center short shrift if you split your time out in the 'burbs somewhere. You should also allow time for a leisurely meal as well.

If you get a chance, download a PDF (or app) of the In Your Pocket guide for Dubrovnik - they will likely have good maps and restaurant listings in the outlying areas.
https://www.inyourpocket.com/dubrovnik

Here is the official bus website. The company is called Libertas.
http://www.libertasdubrovnik.hr/en/

Posted by
2041 posts

Agree with Agnes, we stayed in Lapad once about 15 years ago and there is nothing there to see. Go into town, take the ferry to Lokrum, have a walk around, you could go to the beach for a short time and have lunch there. They only have one cafe so you can’t miss it. Then head back to town, walk the wall, walk the streets and have fun. If you get off the main street (the Stadun) and walk towards the sea, there are a few good museums to visit. Most of the beauty of Dubrovnik is the architecture within the walls.

Posted by
696 posts

Thanks for the replies. I thought the area I mentioned might be interesting to visit, but I can walk through suburbs and see plenty of nondescript lodging close to home. Any recommendations for dinner?

Posted by
2041 posts

Our favorite place is Konoba Kamenice. It is on the market square at the botton of the Game of Thrones steps. It gets very crowded so try and go there early. We have been going there since 2002 and have never had a bad meal. Try the black risotto or “little fish” if they have them. They are smaller then sardines and are fried. They dont’t always have them or sell out quickly. It is a local dish. Croatians eat their main meal around 3:00 and have a very light supper in the evening. If she is still there, an artist, Pavica, has a small shop near the base of the steps. She does all the artwork herself. You can pick up a beautiful souvenir there. We get something every trip.she is a lovely woman and speaks pretty good English.

Posted by
6714 posts

I honestly don't remember where I ate in 2015, but I tried to seek out places away from the main drag (the main drag has plenty of expensive seafood places). There are plenty of side streets like this but, be warned, they are steep and some older folks struggle with them. I didn't see many too many tourists on those side streets.