Day trips, Dubrovnik
My day trip to Elafiti Islands was the best that I could get to explore more of the water around Dubrovnik.
Situated in the north-west of Dubrovnik, the 3 most popular islands are :
Kolocep, the first of the 3 islands is just about 20 minutes by boat from Dubrovnik. There are 14 islands on the Elafiti group of islands but only these 3 are inhabited.
All the islands have lovely beautiful beaches, private coves & picturesque cliffs to attract people coming to this part of Croatia/Dubrovnik.
I paid 180 Kn for this excursion, quite reasonable.
There are a few excursion trips organized by other agencies, some only charge 150 Kn. So, you better ask around.
My trip started at 10 am but other agencies might depart at 9 am or 11 am.
Kolocep island is only 1.35 km2. It's a small one among the 3. You can actually just come to this island from Dubrovnik & stay for one whole day, lying in the sun etc.
The first stop was Kolocep Island.
KOLOCEP is the nearest to Dubrovnik and this fact makes it the most popular destination for people from Dubrovnik. Subtropical vegetation, fresh sea air, grand pinewoods and olive-groves make this an attractive place.
On Kolocep Island, we just had about 45 minutes, walking around the island. Of course not enough time so we just walked within the bay of where the boat was docked.
It was almost quiet, maybe because it was still morning, around 10 to 11 am.
Although there were already some excursion boats around the small dock...
One of my Atlas tours was a wine tasting tour of the PeljesacPeninsula. About an hour north of Dubrovnik, along the coast, the Peljesac Peninsula has dozens of small family vineyards, miles and miles of vine covered, rocky hillsides, steep coastal views, and lovely quiet bays.
We stopped at three family wineries were we were given tours and generous tasting opportunities. Naturally we were also given the opportunity to purchase wines (quiet inexpensive and not bad... even to this Northern California wine enthusiast!). We enjoyed a delicious lunch of soup, cheeses, bread and wine at one of the wineries.
Our tour was repeated in English, French and German and the entire group enthusiastically sang the chorus of "In Vino Veritas" on the bus, over, and over, and over, and over, and over.....
But a fun day was had by all.
My second Atlas tour was a very long, but very interesting day travelling to and through Montenegro. Leaving at 7 am, the bus ventured south, along gorgeous coastline, through passport control, heading inland at the Bay of Kotor. We stopped several times to take photos and then had some time to wander around and visit the old walled city of Kotor.
Getting back on the bus we headed up, up, up, dozens of hair raising switchbacks into the mountains of Montenegro (ergo: Black mountain). From above the views were superb and we had to stop several times for goats, cows and sheep! This is where the skills of the Atlas driver was most evident and several times he earned the applause of the guests.
Inland we stopped for lunch, fresh dalmatian ham and home made cheese sandwiches along with a local wine ($3.00!) at a small village restaurant. Then we proceeded to the capital where we enjoyed a tour of the original home of Nicolas I.
A final stop at a coastal, resort town with another old walled city and an opportunity to enjoy a much needed gelato before heading back along the coast north, returning to Dubrovnik at 7 pm.
I booked two fascinating day trips through the Atlas Agency. Atlas has representatives all over Croatia, and had a desk with a full time sales rep. in the lobby of my hotel. The rep. was more than helpful in assisting me to choose the tours that would be most interesting to me. A van picked me up in the lobby of my hotel and took me to meet the bus with the rest of the guests. At the end of the day they deposited me back at my hotel.
The drivers, guides and bus drivers were fantastic; friendly, knowledgable, and helpful. The busses were clean, modern and air conditioned (important when the temps were in the high 90s) Some of the routes covered white knuckle roads and the drivers were experts. My tours were about $50 USD each and were all day events.
The old town of Cavtat, in the very centre of the South Adriatic, is situated at the south slopes of the peninsula of Rat, in the immediate vicinity of Dubrovnik. Known as Epidaurum in ancient times, it is today the tourist and cultural centre of Konavle, the southernmost region of Croatia. The town of beautiful beaches and luxury hotels together with a traditional way of life and preserved customs waits for you.
The Konavle valley is located about 20 km from Dubrovnik old town not far from he border of Montenegro. Is a rather fertile valley in between the mountains. On this safari you go really off-road with your Nissan Terrano. You go up a mountain to go near the triangle : Croatia,Montenegro, Bosnia. You have some wonderful views here !!! Do not expect to see any wild animals on this safari. It is more the adventure that counts. After a while you have to cross a river, take a rest and watch the trout jumping out of the water. Nature rules !!!
A thing you really should do on this trip is go eating in a old olive-mill. Food is prepared here on the traditional way, on hot coals. Delicious !!! You can drink a local grappa made from herbs in that region and eat fresh figues .
I forgot where it was but if you ask the agency they will surely know it !!
MOLUNAT - village on the most southern tip of Croatia. From Dubrovnik take Cavtat road and then go further till you see sign for Molunat. It's a tiny and sleepy village with nice nature and a little sandy beach. Go there to get away from all those people in Dubrovnik.
Gruz, like Lapad is only a short bus ride from Dubrovnik and has some nice shops, a market and many boating tour companies.
SLANO - little town just half an hour drive from Dubrovnik has nice beach & all inclusive hotel Osmine
KORCULA island - Zavalatica bay. Great swimming, beautiful nature. Far away from Dubrovnik, so visit only if staying on Korcula island or in Orebic town on Peljesac peninsula.
KORCULA island - Priscapac village. Great place for swimming and sailing. Beautiful nature. You can stay at hotel appartments (on the picture).
MLINI - some 15 km south from Dubrovnik, next to Plat, on the way to Cavtat. Beautiful little village by the sea with great beaches, one big (and good!) hotel called Astarea and - beautiful parks!
PLAT - little village 15 km south from Dubrovnik with great beaches and a refurbished hotel & villas with appartments (not the one on the photo!)