Dubrovnik has withstood earthquakes and sieges. Its marble flagstones and rugged walls give this lovely city – Croatia’s most popular – a timeless feel.
But the seasons vary hugely in Dubrovnik. Choosing the best time to visit depends on your attitude to the weather and the crowds. High summer can mean festivals and sun, while winter can seem like you have the city to yourself. Here’s the best time to visit Dubrovnik.
What’s the weather like in Dubrovnik?
Dubrovnik is in southern Dalmatia, near Croatia’s southern tip. The Adriatic offers swimming and water sports and gives this port city a maritime climate. Summers are warm and sunny, and winters are damp and fairly mild. It’s a compact place, with under 50,000 residents – making it significantly smaller than Split and Zadar further up the coast. That means the picturesque old town can get crowded, so plan your trip carefully.
Busy July and August are best for good weather and great festivals
In July and August (the high season), the sea is warm, and there’s an average of 11 hours of sunshine each day. Temperatures frequently exceed 95°F (35°C) as a constant stream of festivals – which focus on classical music, theater, folk and opera – arrive in town. Croatia’s many dance music festivals are further up the coast near Zadar, but buses and ferries make getting around a breeze.
This all means Dubrovnik gets busy, so arrange accommodations as early as possible. Overnight visitors are joined by cruise ship passengers several times a day, which can make the old town hectic. Things are quietest before 9.30am or after 3pm, and day trips and visits to nearby islands mean you won’t struggle to fill your day.
By August, the water is at its warmest, though you may need to look for longer to find a quiet spot – try hopping on a sea kayak or getting a boat to the car-free Elaphite Islands. Dubrovnik’s cultural blitz continues with concerts and theater (usually including 16th-century playwright Marin Držić’s exuberant comedies). The heat and high visitor numbers mean it’s not worth rushing – instead, go with the flow and soak up the atmosphere.
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