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HELP HELP please & thanks! Croatia Split-Hvar-Dubrovnik

Hello!

My Airfrance flight cancelled and i had to completely reroute my trip :( . I am hoping for some advice so I can appropriately plan my time here in Croatia as it is a bit stressful to change everything up. Thank you for your help!

Aug 11 arrive from Prague to Split at 1:55pm
Aug 12 Split
Aug 13 Split (?) [too much time in split? ]
Aug 14 ferry ? to Hvar
Aug 15 Hvar
Aug 16 Dubrovnik
Aug 17 Dubrovnik [too much time in Dub? ]
Aug 18 Dubrovnik 10:35 flight to Los Angeles (new flight)

So my only option to end in Dubrovnik is to drive or ferry

With this in mind, can any one help me with allocation of time spent in
Split
Hvar
Dubrovnik
possibly Vis, Brac, Korcula, Montenegro, or Mostar ? OR any other suggestions :). I am hearing Korcula is like a mini Dubrovnik so I am not sure if I should just cut it out entirely?

Other flight option is to flight Prague- Zagreb but because it is more city-like would be better to skip it and focus on a more Croatian experience?

(I have to end my flight in Dubrovnik and my original flight was from Split - home (canceled) with an in between flight from Dub- Split aug 14 is forfeited.)

THANKS :)

Posted by David
Seattle, WA, USA
2706 posts

OK, settle down. :) No need to panic - your trip is in August.

It's not entirely clear to me exactly what you need to "change" and what your worries are. That said, I'll try to address some of your questions. It's been about 5 years since I was there, I doubt much has changed except it has probably become more crowded with each passing year, each new cruise ship, and each season of Game Of Thrones.

I was not crazy about Split. Yes, many people love it, I found it completely jammed with cruise ship tourists, so crowded that the streets were hard to move through (on foot). I was happy to move on after a day. Also was not terribly charmed by Hvar - it seemed crass and dedicated to the party-all-night crowd (not my thing); we had half a day in Hvar and were ready to move on. We next stopped in Korcula, and we loved that. It had all the charm I had been expecting in Hvar and none of the pretentiousness. We stayed 2 days and could have stayed more. All that said, tastes vary, and I know many people love love love Split and Hvar. Korcula was not at all crowded when we were there (early June, right before things get busy).

As for Dubrovnik, we loved the place at night, after the mobs of cruise ship passengers retreated to their ships. During the day, the crush of crowds were pretty depressing. But that's now typical in many places of Europe that are being loved to death.

No mention of Plitvice? Seems to me that it would be sad to visit Croatia and miss that.

For many people, I think the trick for seeing Croatia is how to get around. There's no single answer - I think it works best if you can do some with a rental car (Plitvice, for example), and connect other places by ferry (the islands, of course). In any of the old cities, you do not want a car. That said, a car makes it easy to do Kotor as a side trip, consider that too.

You're going in August. Plan for large crowds in these popular places.

Hope that helps.

Posted by iatemypanda OP
161 posts

The reason why I have to hurry is because I had used award points to booking my original canceled flight and then i had to reroute my Trip to use up the award points since they got stuck in AirFrance and can’t be transferred back.

So I have to decide on booking a flight from Prague to Split on aug 11 or aug 12 giving Prague either 1.5 or 2.5 days before moving on to Croatia.

Currently my plan/ flight is
aug 9 10:55 ppl arrive to Prague
August 10 Prague explore
Aug 11 12:30 and leave for split (?) [other option is possibly book to Zagreb but I don’t know if it will be a good idea to spend my time cramming in Zagreb )

And I am only able to make changes to the flight by Monday :( so a little bit of a rush to rebook accommodations/ flights. And I lost 2 flight tickets non refundable from dub-split already since this flight change happened. :/

I was thinking of at least allocating a full day each to split and Dubrovnik to explore both.

Day trip to Hvar I was not suee if it was possible since the latest ferry leaves at 5pm(?) so it would be like 1/2 day there.

any suggestion on how to allocate my time to end in Dubrovnik so I can fly out from there?

David, from your experience with Split, hvar, and Dubrovnik, which requires less time because it is smaller or more concentrated ?

Should I instead allocate an extra day to maybe Prague not that it won’t be touristy as heck as well...

I did see Plitvice as an option but knowing how crowded it will be in August I did research and found it might be a bit of a pain to get to and a jam of tourist all on one small little walkway to see the sight. Let me know what you think!

Posted by Andrew H.
Portland, Oregon
2787 posts

I agree with David about Split - it's interesting but I wasn't crazy about it either.

Didn't visit Hvar. Enjoyed Korcula, but my visit was mid-October, with the season winding down, so it was a little dead. Should be hopping in August.

I'd expect pretty much everywhere along the Dalmatian Coast to be crowded in August - the absolute high season. I probably wouldn't go to Plitvice in August either - a long trip from Split, only to land at the park mid-day with mobs of other people clogging the trails. You could day trip to Krka National Park instead - a little closer, probably crowded, too, though.

Posted by David
Seattle, WA, USA
2706 posts

OK, first, about your canceled flight...

I understand you booked it with award points. You should be aware of your rights and what the airlines should/will do re-accommodate you. You may have more/better options than you think. As an example:

My next trip (coming up in June) was booked with award points, too. I used Delta points for the outbound (flying on Delta, from Seattle to Amsterdam with a stop in Portland on the way; I would have preferred a nonstop from Seattle to Amsterdam, but the cost for that flight was 3X the points required for the one-stop, so I accepted the one-stop in PDX).

I used United points for the return (flying on a combination of LOT Polish Airlines and United - LOT from Warsaw to Chicago, connecting to United Chicago to Seattle; I wasn't thrilled with the flight to Chicago - I prefer a longer flight all the way to the west coast - but it was what I could get at the time of booking). Both of these flights were booked last September.

Last weekend, I happened to be checking my flights on the United website, and up popped a notice that there was a schedule change. They had canceled our connection from Chicago to Seattle, and put us on an earlier flight (their last flight of the day to SEA). Problem was, the connection time in Chicago was literally 5 minutes after the flight from Warsaw arrives, which of course would be impossible. I looked up alternatives online and saw different, a much better routing (FRA-SFO) - but that would cost 2X the miles we spent. Fortunately I know the rules. They changed their schedule, not me, and even with a cancelation, it's still their responsibility to accommodate us. I called and explained the situation. First they offered us a connecting flight out the next day (we would have to overnight in Chicago), but I told them we had to be at work the next morning. I countered with my proposal: the better routing I had found (at the higher points price). I asked if they could put us on that flight, for no additional charge. He put me on hold, then came back and said OK.

As luck would have it, 3 nights ago I was checking on our outbound flight on Delta. There was an alert about a schedule change for that, too! Again, they changed their schedule, so our previous connection in Portland was now a 5 minute connection. Again I did the research, found a much better flight: the non-stop direct from SEA to AMS that I had wanted originally. There was space on that flight, but the "cost" was 3X the price (in points) that we paid. I called and asked if they would put us on the better nonstop flight, even though it would cost a fortune (in points). They agreed. No charge.

Twice in the space of a few days, the airlines had changed flight schedules. In both cases, the result for me was two much better flights. My point here is that a schedule change doesn't need to be a disaster. In fact, a schedule change actually presents a great opportunity to improve your flights. The trick is, you need to do the work - find a better routing that you would rather have - and then ask them to change your flights to that, rather than having them change it to what they want. You also need to know the rules and ask for what you want.

The rules: In most cases, if you have an award flight booked, and they make a significant schedule change, they should suggest an alternative. You can accept that but you do not have to. As long as your origin and destination (and travel date) remains the same, they should be able to put you on a different routing even if that appears to "cost" them more. Also remember they have airline partners (eg with our flight from Warsaw, we switched from LOT+United to Lufthansa+United). It's not "anything goes" (there are limits to what they will agree to) but they generally try to bend over backwards to give you what you want if they can.

I'd suggest you take a look at routing options and see if there's something better available.

Posted by iatemypanda OP
161 posts

hi david! I did the research as I am very thorough a well BUT unfortunately

Air France awards is tricky! There was only one flight out of Split to LAX on aug 18th at 25,000pts and $142 with a short connecting flight of 1-2 hrs in Rome leaving the total trip to be somewhere around 14-15 hours total if i remember correctly. SO since there was only ONE seat left in award booking i had secured that seat along with another under Allitalia for $635 for my husband GREAT deal I thought at first .... EXCEPT

they cancelled the Split to rome flight from 6am to 8 or 9am with allitalia.

Turns out the only flight they had left was August 19 a flight home sunday leaving no time to recover from Jet lag AND giving us an 8 hour layover in rome.

new flight was 12:30 AM to 1 am something SIT at Rome airport for 8 hours and then board the 9:35am flight from Rome to LAX. total flight time changing from 14-15 hrs to 22 hours! and a day later!

That was there ONLY option OR cancel. as award points with air france do not allow you to change the flight or anything unless the same flight was worth the same amount in points!!! and i was stuck with a cash flight that I needed to get a matching ticket for.

The cash flight I would have been able to change IF seats were available and any change in airport/ departure area resulted in a small minimal fee HOWEVER flights from Air france awards booking shows No flights from croatia :( except on dates aug 20 and further which I could not accommodate as we are returning to work then.

I did my researched asked if I book my own flight from Split to Rome if that would work but nothing would fly in on time to check in to for the Rome-LAX leg, UNLESS i wanted to stay overnight in rome which would be a hassle as taxi to and from airport is $50 each way etc for one night stay ;(

I was able to book Norwegian flights from Dubrovnik to LAX home 16 hours or 16hours 50mins with my chase points so that worked out ok. THEN i had to use find some way to use my air france points and found an award point from Porto to prague for 13000 points each. so we did that :(

quite a pickle!

ALSO because It was with allitalia i could only take a flight with allitalia. i could not use other airlines such as vueling etc etc because they said if it is a flight change far in advance They are not required to offer those other options only if it is a last minute change closer to the date of travel or day of ..... -______-

I worked it out and was able to get dub - lax tickets for 57000 points each so about the same almost as my original booking of $1050 (2 tickets ) vs $1140 ish in points

but I had to forfeit my little $50-70 x2 flight from dub to split as it is nonrefundable and a separate booking

Posted by David
Seattle, WA, USA
2706 posts

OK, now, to your specific questions...

IMHO, a full day each in Split and Dubrovnik should be enough for most people. Honestly, the evenings in Dubrovnik were the best times to be there - I assume when you say "one day in xyz" you will have at least one or maybe two nights there, too.

Spilt and Dubrovnik are the larger cities. That said, the old/walled/historic centers are not huge - you can cover either in a long day.
Hvar and Korkula are both tiny - you can walk from one end to the other of each's old town before you finish a beer or glass of wine (well, depends on how fast you walk/drink, but they're quite compact).

You will want to check all the boat schedules carefully, I'm sure they change every year - and do be aware that they are highly seasonal - some lines only run during the busy months (or may only run daily during busy months). There are also multiple ferry companies, including some very small/local lines. The point is, do your ferry research well, as some options may not bubble up to the top in a cursory search. Check dates carefully, some won't run every day. The good news is that in August, everything is probably running at full tilt and all the options should be on.

We did this by ferry: Early ferry Split-Hvar, stopped for a few hours there in Hvar, walked up to the fortress over town, etc., then onward by another afternoon ferry that afternoon Hvar-Korcula, 2 nights there, then next morning we did a "transfer" by boat+mini-bus from Korcula to Dubrovnik (arranged by a local agency there in Korcula). That was reasonably efficient and worked well for us.

Plitvice is amazing, but yes it's popular, and it's also a challenge logistically: it's best done with a rental car, arrive there mid-day, do a bit of the park late in the day, sleep in a hotel in the park, get up early, do some more of the park, then drive off later that day. So it requires a car and two days, which may not work for you.

Re: Prague...tough call. It's an amazing place, of course. Have you been there before, or is this likely your first/only chance to visit there for a while? Would be painful to just see it go by on a pass-through, but...one always has to choose trade-offs on any trip.

All of these places are going to be pretty swamped with tourists in August.

Hope this helps.

Posted by David
Seattle, WA, USA
2706 posts

re - your flights...

Well, your situation was clearly complicated, as (if I'm reading correctly) you have multiple constraints, and you are trying to align one award flight with one paid flight, etc. Anything involving Alitalia also complicates things (they've always been "difficult" and their current financial situation just compounds that).

Still, you booked this with Air France miles though - right? They (Air France) should also have access to their partners' inventory including KLM and Delta, which should open up multiple routing options. If I'm understanding your constraints, you have one paid ticket from Rome to LA, which you still plan to use, and you need to get an award seat on that same flight? If so, you might consider returning on different flights, if you can stomach that and if it opens up better options. I know, not as much fun, but...weigh that against other considerations.

Regarding finding a route that works: my approach to these things is to focus on the long flight, which is always the hard one - between (anyplace in Europe) and (someplace within striking distance of LAX). Europe is relatively small (when flying) and there are lots of inexpensive options for positioning if needed. The west coast of North America is equally well connected. This might run up against their guidelines (they're going to want to limit you to the same departure and destination cities, you might try pushing them on that if you find something reasonable), but I'd look for anything that gets you from near your departure to anything that's near your destination. Be polite and cooperative, but don't forget that they have a responsibility to get you where you want to go - and they should want to keep you happy, or at least not really POed. Look for any award seats that are available, including on their partners, even if they require an astronomical amount of points - the "cost in points" should not be a factor, as long as there's an award seat available, they should be able to access it and put you in it (the first agent you speak with will need to ask their supervisor for permission). Remember: most of the rules for normal award redemptions can be bent in your case if it gets you something akin to what you had planned (most rules, but not all - ie they're probably not going to move you to first class if you booked a coach award seat). Still, it can't hurt to ask. And since the airline agents are often lazy, clueless and unmotivated, it's in your best interest to have options you can spoon-feed to them rather than relying on them to find you something good. It shouldn't be that way but that's how airlines and their agents tend to be these days.

Hope some of the above is useful. Don't forget: you're going to a cool, beautiful place. The flights are just a means to get you there so don't let the details get you down.

Posted by iatemypanda OP
161 posts

David you are amazing! thanks

This is my first time in Prague!

I was looking at a website called www.daysinacity.com and I feel like we are described as Globetrotters lol and we tended to move quickly through places NOT needing to do every museum and very church etc mostly just major sites.

I am concerned about cutting my time in Prague but also concerned that since Croatia is so hard to get to I will unlikely visit again so not sure if donating a day to Croatia is better.... giving Prague 1 day extra would make my arrival to Split start on
Aug 12 12:30pm Split
Aug 13 Split
Aug 14 stay in Hvar or Korcula,
Aug 15 visit Hvar or Korcula ?
Aug 16 Dubrovnik or Mostar?
Aug 17 Dubrovnik
Aug 18 Dubrovnik 10:35 flight to Los Angeles (new flight)

I did see your suggestions for Plitvice ! Flights to Zagreb is slightly cheaper and also nonstop. However then I would have to go from
Prague - Zagreb, rent a car
drive 2 hrs to Plitvice
then go to ???? split 4 hours drive??? lol
I do not think I would want to allocate 2 whole days to see Plitvice I would probably do the park in the 1 day and head out to the next spot. but maybe I am looking at the plan wrong. Not sure what the best route would be if we were to do it! my husband is a sucker for scenic things!

Regarding Hvar and Korcula, did you prefer one over the other? Or recommend then as day trips only?
How long and how much was your local agency arranged Korcula - Dub transportation ?

I originally thought we would love to spend a night or 2 in Hvar because it seemed like a Santorini upscale place. Also because Hvar the Split roundtrip timetable was not the best earliest 8:35-9:30am or 9:45-10:50am return if returning on aug 13 or 15 latest option is 4:10pm -5:15pm if going on Aug 14 return is only 2:45-3:50pm. My impression is that Hvar is more of a party place so if we were to party we would miss out on that if we made it a day trip. Not that we can handle much partying anymore anyways!!

Did you by chance visit Vis, Brac, Mostar or any other island?

I know it is touristy season and unfortunately we could only go during my husband's Summer break :[ ! very said indeed! I will have to fight through crowds.

We found a cheap flight direct from LAX-BCN for $294 per person at the time I booked and we just rolled with it from there.

Posted by iatemypanda OP
161 posts

thanks david for your advice on the award flights/ points!

It was made more difficult bc of Allitalia's Limited options. Since one was a cash booking it mean there was only one other award flight left leaving me with the same situation. I even tried to reroute to Genona Italy to try to go to Cinque Terre but gave up on that since CT is like super crowded in August and no where to absorb all the people. Also scratched going to Finland as it was too out of the way. we decided last minute on Portugal instead on a whim.

Air france awards do let you change your booking or modify it however its got to be a matching set. they would not let me change my flight for something worth more points even though the flight change was involuntary! I hope I made the right decision in rerouting my trip and I am at least glad to reuse the points from Air france to go from Porto- Prague as I do not know if I shall be back to Europe anytime soon and would hate to let the points Rot in air france flying blue somewhere forgotten. It just made our trip a little rushed since we had to include Prague in (not that we didnt want to visit already) but just on a stricter schedule based on award availability (certain days were low fare awards and other days 30,000 pts one day porto-prague etc).

So our plan starts like that
Aug 3 arrive to BCN 12:30pm
Aug 4 Barcelona
Aug 5 Barcelona to Lisbon
Aug 6 Lisbon
Aug 7 Lisbon
Aug 8 Lisbon train to Porto
Aug 9 Porto - Prague 6:55pm

I did the best I could with the options I had! i think :)

Also I was wondering if you recommend even staying a night in Split or Hvar or Korcula, to minimize packing and unpacking I was wondering if it's better to use somewhere as a base.... but seems like I do need to eventually move to Hvar or Korcula to get to Dubrovnik via catamaran or ferry ....

You did mention that Split or Dubrovnik only need a full day each. Wondering if I should just visit split but opt out of staying overnight there? then moving on to stay at Hvar or Korcula only --> Dubrovnik and possible car rental for a Mostar trip IF we feel that is possible timewise/ we are up for it.

Posted by David
Seattle, WA, USA
2706 posts

Well, I understand, sometimes you just need to grab the bull by the horns and just make it work. Sounds like you did.

So, are you saying your trip starts with Barcelona, Lisbon, Porto, then hops to Prague, and then Croatia? Wow. Be careful you don't wear yourself out...I would suggest you try to slow down a bit at some point (only way to do that, of course, is to stop moving from place to place = less stops) or you risk flaming out, getting sick, etc. Gotta pace yourself. I guess you'll sleep on the flight home, eh? :)

Yes, you can connect to Dubrovnik via ferry from the islands, so it's not hard to include them. We loved Korcula in the evening. All the coastal towns were lovely in the evening.

Posted by iatemypanda OP
161 posts

Yes! We did a similar trip hopping around in Europe for 24-25 days

From London to Paris to colmar to Venice to Santorini 5 days and Rome 4-5 days

But I was worried about the Prague add in that made the time constraints an issue, :(

I’m either case we probably had you hop back and forth to Barcelona as there are No direct flights from Portugal to Croatia anyways ...

Lol

Posted by iatemypanda OP
161 posts

Did you have a favorite between Hvar or Korcula?

Or maybe wished you had overnighted in Hvar vs Korcula ?
:)

Posted by David
Seattle, WA, USA
2706 posts

Did you have a favorite between Hvar or Korcula?
Or maybe wished you had overnighted in Hvar vs Korcula ?

We loved Korcula. It was one of our favorite places on a trip with many wonderful stops.

I wasn't crazy about Hvar though...not really to my tastes.

Given the two, for us, it would be no contest: Korcula hands down.

Tastes vary though - I know some folks love Hvar.

Posted by Jennifer
Tunbridge Wells
2107 posts

Why does everybody on this forum think that Hvar = Hvar town? Hvar is an island that takes c 1.5 hours to drive east/west! Yes, in August Hvar town will be party central, full of noisy teenage Europeans (and many noisy young Americans when I was last there), but the rest of the island will be busy with families wanting a quiet holiday with time at the beach and some good food. I love Stari Grad, with its picturesque harbour and the inland villages and Vrboska (mini Venice).

Plitvice in August will be hideously busy and it’s in the wrong direction for Dubrovnik, so unless you can stay there the night before, you may want to consider giving it a miss. Given a choice of Plitvice or Hvar/Korcula, I would opt for the islands. The days I have spent in Split haven’t been with lots of day trip cruise ship passengers, but a full day will be sufficient to see the highlights. Nearby Trogir is also worth at least half a day. The day you arrive, it will be after 3pm by the time you arrive at your accommodation.

Much of the accommodation on the islands has a 3 night minimum booking, so for a shorter stay, your options will be more limited. Korcula is a mini Dubrovnik, but different in character.

The catamaran from Hvar or Korcula will get you into Dubrovnik at lunchtime, so this would only give you 1.5 days in Dubrovnik, which isn’t too much. You don’t have time for Mostar etc.

Posted by iatemypanda OP
161 posts

thanks for your reply Jennifer!

That’s helpful!

Yes I did try to map out Plitvice and it’s just out of the way and mad crazy busy in August.

I think I might do split 1-1.5 days stay in Hvar or Korcula and day trip to the other?

And maybe stay in Dubrovnik 2 days?

I did not consider Trogir but I need to look into it.

Have you visited vis or Brac? Would you recommend either of those islands or have a preference ?

Posted by iatemypanda OP
161 posts

Andrew H.,

sorry I did not see your post till right now :)

Thanks for giving me the input on Split !

I know you and David were not as fond about Split. I am trying to allocate a full day there and some people say to go visit Trogir from Split....

Your input helps a lot! Because I was literally wondering what to do with my time [more time in Split or more in Dubrovnik or islands...]

Not sure if this is a good idea but would it be bette to NOT stay in Split overnight at all? Meaning fly in from Prague to Split and take a 3pm o 4:15pm catamaran straight to Hvar. Stay in Hvar 1-2 nights and use one day to day trip to split?

From there move to Korcula then Dubrovnik?

let me know if that is a silly idea. I did see you mention that the Islands are small so we might run out of things to do versus staying in Split and Dubrovnik.

Posted by iatemypanda OP
161 posts

I just thought of something.

Would it be better to not stay overnight in Split at all?

From Split airport go straight to ferry and ferry/ catamaran to Hvar
Hvar 3 nights with day trip to Split??
Korcula 1-2 nights
Dubrovnik 2-3 nights (Mostar day trip or possibly tour on viator? )

David, since you did a similar route how horrible was all the unpacking and luggage carrying. I was a little concerned about that and originally thought it was better to base myself in Split / Dubrovnik and just do day trips to Hvar and Korcula from there. But will miss out on the island experience :(

Posted by David
Seattle, WA, USA
2706 posts

David, since you did a similar route how horrible was all the unpacking and luggage carrying. I was a little concerned about that and originally thought it was better to base myself in Split / Dubrovnik and just do day trips to Hvar and Korcula from there. But will miss out on the island experience

Well, I am used to living out of my bag/backpack as I'm traveling - really not much unpacking/repacking done other than right before we get on a plane. Carrying stuff, sure it gets a little tiresome but that's not a major issue for us (if it is, it may be more of an indication that you're bringing too much stuff, rather than that you're changing locations too much).

Based on the overall pace of your trip, I'd be careful about trying to squeeze in too many places. Having too many one-night-stands can kill you, as you never get a chance to just be somewhere if you're constantly on the move.

I don't think it usually makes sense to blow through anyplace, then back-track to that place as a day trip. It's just not efficient to go over the same route more than once. Sounds like you're toying with that idea for Split.

The problem with day trips is that they put you in the place when it's at its worst: mid-day, when all the other day-trippers are there, all the cruise ship passengers are there, so it's at its most crowded, and also in the mid-day heat. You also burn time both coming and going - and you need to be as efficient as possible since you're trying to include so many places.

Consider the following (this is actually pretty close to what we ended up doing). I figure you have 5 days for this, not counting your arrival and departure days...

  • Day 0 (travel day): arrive Split airport mid-day. Since you are only flying in from Prague, I'll assume no jet lag here - if you were flying in on an overnight flight from the US, I'd never suggest this. Hopefuly you won't be exhausted yet from your trip in Portugal and Prague. Anyway, arrive Split mid-day, head in to Split old town. Explore Split in the afternoon and evening, sleep in Split in the old town.
  • Day 1: Up early, take ferry to Hvar. Spend half day exploring Hvar, then get on the afternoon ferry to Korcula. Arrive Korcula late afternoon. Sleep in Korcula old town. This assumes there actually is a ferry/ferries that does this. When we were there, it was possible to stop 1/2 day in Hvar then continue on a different ferry, arriving in Korcula late afternoon on the same day we left Split. It worked for us. Check to ensure it's doable on the day you want.
  • Day 2: Relax in Korcula. Sleep in Korcula old town.
  • Day 3: Up early, get transfer (a local tourist service place does this) from Korcula to Dubrovnik (they put people in a small boat, ferry them across the channel to Orebic on the mainland, then mini-bus to their office in Dubrovnik, arriving mid-day). Spend afternoon and evening in Dubrovnik, sleep in Dubrovnik old town.
  • Day 4: Enjoy Dubrovnik, sleep in Dubrovnik old town.
  • Day 5: Rent a car locally and do a day trip to Kotor. I'm not sure if Mostar can be done reasonably as a day trip, but Kotor certainly can - it was easy (and we loved it). Return car back in Dubrovnik, sleep in Dubrovnik old town. Note: Dubrovnik gets LOTS of cruise ships; Kotor gets fewer but when a ship is in there it completely changes the experience. I would research when ships are in both ports and switch plans for day 4/5 if that gets you to Kotor on a day when no (or at least few) ships are in port).
  • Day 6: Fly home outta Dubrovnik.

This is still moving quite fast, but at least you get a couple places where you spend 2 or 3 nights (2 in Korcula, 3 in Dubrovnik). I think you will need to be careful not to over-do things, as you may be a bit worn down from the other parts of your trip before you even arrive in Croatia.

Hope that helps.

Posted by iatemypanda OP
161 posts

Thanks! Yes your trip was somewhat similar.

I think i will scratch the idea of day tripping back to Split.

I did find a very central place in split to stay near the Dom Palace. From aug 11-13

And was wondering how to allocate my Hvar / Korcula time. Even though of staying in Hvar 2-3 nights day trip to Korcula one of those days. But in the end we still have to head toward Dubrovnik.

And according to Jadrolinja there’s only one catamaran 6:40pm-7:55 pm Hvar-Korcula

Would you know if other ferries are reliable like the croatiaferries timetables?

I would want to buy my tickets online ASAP once everything is locked in

Mostar trip is option and we can hire a viator day tour for it so I’m not too concerned about it :) if we can fit it great if not oh well Or the car rental option/ day trip.

Posted by David
Seattle, WA, USA
2706 posts

We found ferries to be 100% reliable. Just a bit complicated and difficult to figure out from far away and well in advance of when we were there.

There are definitely multiple ferry companies. Jadrolinja is the big one, but don't ignore the others - we probably used 3-4 on our trip.

Krilo line - useful for Split to islands: https://www.krilo.hr/en/

Croatia Ferries website - lots of info here on ferries throughout the country: https://www.croatiaferries.com/

The popular islands/ports are well connected, especially in high season. I'd expect all to be reliable unless you have some good reason to suspect otherwise.

Posted by iatemypanda OP
161 posts

Any advice where to stay in Dubrovnik ?

I was between the Old Town maybe near Stradun?? Or some other recommended area if you have one OR Ploce.

I understand Ploce has a view of the walls/ sea but that is if you get a decently expensive accommodation with a view ;) and are willing to hike up many stairs when returning to and from the Airbnb/ vrbo.

Posted by David
Seattle, WA, USA
2706 posts

We just picked a place in Dubrovnik's old center out of Rick's book.

Posted by iatemypanda OP
161 posts

Does Korcula have enough to do to occupy 2 days?

Just wonder if I should allocate split 1 night technically 3pm- next morning then ferry to Hvar 2 nights, Korcula 2 nights?

Or leave Korcula at 1 night only

Posted by Agnes
Washington DC Region, USA
4517 posts

I'm one of the folks who actually really liked Split. No, two full days there is not too much at all. Dubrovnik is much smaller than Split and deserves less time....it's tiny and can be seen in one day. of course, it's much preferable to linger for two due to the inane crowds (and there are nice side trips from there that can take an entire day, like Montanegro). It sounds like you only have less than 7 full days and you're already overplanning it. Croatia is one of the chill-est places I've been to - no need to stress over it or overextend yourself.

Posted by daniel
56 posts

Lots of other comments on the places so I’ll add an interesting option to get from Korcula to Dubrovnik. Hire a driver. It’s a big if a splurge but we really enjoyed (did it reverse) - you would take the passenger boat across to Orebic where you’d be met by the driver. 3 Winery stops. Lunch. Stop at Ston / Mali Ston and then another at Trsteno Gardens and then Dubrovnik.

We used the driver recommended by RS. He was excellent. Wonderful way to spend 8+ hours! I think it was 250e.

One comment on boats. Ferries are reliable in most any weather; catamaran hydrofoils not so much.