Most people go from Croatia to Montenegro for a day trip, but we did the opposite. We were staying in Kotor and wanted to see Dubrovnik on a quick trip. This day-long excursion was a splurge, but it’s one we accepted in order to see the historic fortification around the old city.
The bus from Kotor to Dubrovnik cost $40 for two people, one way. Expensive for a day trip. The ride took just under three hours, and about 2.5 hours on the way back into Montenegro that night. En route to Dubrovnik, the bus went by the airport in Tivat, and then on the car ferry across the bay, and then north to the Croatian border.
Once in Dubrovnik, we immediately bought our return tickets (another $40). Then it cost the equivalent of $5 for the two of us to grab a city bus from the station to the old town.
We only had about 4.5 hours to play tourist. The main thing to do in Dubrovnik is to walk the walls around the old city – and so that’s what we did. It cost $48 for two people.
The Walls of Dubrovnik are considered to be among the greatest fortifications in the Middle Ages. The walls were changed and updated many times throughout history. During the breakup of Yugoslavia, Serbia shelled Croatia from the sea and damaged some of the walls.
We met a former Croatian soldier some months ago on our travels who was stationed in Dubrovnik during the war. He recounted moving through the old town while under fire. That’s pretty wild stuff — and it’s happened again and again throughout Balkan history.
The walls you see today are a darn good representation of what this fortification looked like ages ago. Forts, gates, towers, moats – this system was incredibly complex. Today, tourists “walk the walls.”
We were on the walls in the late afternoon in early September, so the sunlight was just right. Bring water – it’s hot. Before we started we spent $2 on a liter bottle of water.
Another tip – go when there is no cruise ship at port. We passed thousands of tourists, but there would have been thousands more if boats had been docked. Just imagine how packed with people these shots would have been if it had been a cruise ship day.
Tedly bought a beer on the walls, for a hefty $7. A soda down below later for me cost $2.
After sunset, we had a snack with an amazing view. A cheese plate for two with a beer for Tedly cost about $28, including the tip.
And then we blew another $10 for a taxi ride back to the bus station across town.
Originally, we were supposed to stay a few days in Dubrovnik, but my surgery messed up those plans. We did this quick trip because we at least wanted to see the old town while we were in that general region of the planet, because we don’t know when (or if) we’ll ever get back that way again.
So even though $182 was a steep tab for us retired budget travelers, at least we got to experience walking the Walls of Dubrovnik. And that’s why we travel: to experience the world.