this tip is for any touristic place in the world, but in Dub. it makes a lot of difference comparing to other places in croatia..
in case you are a poor backpacker like me :)
do yourself a favor and never buy drinks (especially water) in the restaurents or kiosks
on the street (I dont mean when you sit and eat), but in the supermarkets or in the small gorcery stores!! (for example: small bottle of water cost 7 kuna in a coffee shop or restaurent when in the supermarket a big bottle cost about 3-4)
These are stands and the ones we encountered clustered around the two passages through the East wall on the Embankment at the Old Port (but there may be many others).There does not appear to be much variety in prices and since only Croatian is spoken (and even that with reticence)our negotiations were only saying "no" and walking further. There were no calls after us.
What to buy: The embroidered cottons with crocheted borders were of good quality according to my buyer, and were not imported fakes. She said the prices were "appropriate" and so I approved and she bought. It was cash only.
What to pay: It depends on size and object. This stuff is easy to carry but may be too expensive for souvenirs but excellent for gifts.
While browsing through the shops on the main promenade, we came across a delightful gift and wine shop. The shop carried many wines produced in Croatia and we were very impressed with the selection. The prices were somewhat comparable to the price of a mid-priced wine in the US.
After paying our traffic ticket fine, and because we were there for only one day, our traffic ticket fine (150 kuna) became our unit of exchange. A good bottle of Croatian wine costs a little less (about 120 kuna) than one Croatian traffic ticket.
What to pay: One traffic ticket or less
I love farmers' markets and rarely miss my weekend trip to my local farmers' market in San Rafael, California. This one in Dubrovnik looked every bit as appealing. If we had been staying somewhere with a kitchen, I'm sure I would have loaded up with these delicious looking fruits and vegetables and tried my hand at whipping up a Croatian dinner.
I don't know how often this market is open, but it was open the morning we were there, and was closed down by about 2:00 pm. It was located in a small plaza on the east side of the old town.
This tiny little bakery just off the Stradun is the perfect place to get breakfast or a snack and is open long hours (eary morning until midnight!). It's very cheap, too.
What to buy: We regularly got breakfast from here - usually a cream cake for each of us and a small loaf of fresh bread, to be eaten on the steps of the large Onofrian Fountain (sometimes with cheese from the market). Every day there are different cakes so I never got to try all the ones I wanted!
What to pay: For a loaf of bread and two cakes we spent about 14 kn. Definitely a budget option, but so yummy!
This is the working pharmacy in the Franciscan Monastery just inside the Pile Gate. When I travel, I like to bring gifts that are unique to the place I visit, but not overly touristy, and this fit the bill perfectly. The pharmacy still makes several face and hand creams and infused water (rose and lavendar) to original recipes from 1317 and sells them in the shop. If you tell them its for gifts, they will put them in special bags too.
What to buy: I bought lemon hand lotion, rose face cream, and a moisturiser with jojoba and menthol that smells exactly like a lemon yoghurt! It is all gorgeous and only available from here.
What to pay: about 40-50 kn per jar.
When you're in the Old Town, make sure you don't spend all of your time on Stradun. Sure, many people have called it the most beautiful street in the world. Sure, it's lined with great cafes and shops. Sure, it begins with a beautiful monastery and ends with a great square with a Venetian-style palace and a beautiful church. But make sure you venture off of Stradun and explore the streets that run parallel to it, particular on the side closest to the water. There are plenty of good shops to keep you busy here.
I arrived in Dubrovnik with some injuries suffered in Split after getting mugged. As a result, I spent more time at cafes and bars just simply relaxing, writing, people-watching, talking to locals and reading. I stopped at this bookstore along the main street in Old Town called Stradun. My sister had told me about this great book by Ann Patchett, called Bel Canto, so when I saw it on the shelf, I bought it. The book is great for travelers and music lovers alike and is really a good read.
Algoritam has the best English language selection in town and you shouldn't have any trouble finding various travel guides or just some good pleasure reading. I paid 70kn for the paperback.
Whenever I go to an new city, I make it a point to try to go to a local market. In Dubrovnik, I saw two, although there are probably more than that. The first one that I came across was one bus stop away from the main bus station (in the direction towards the port). It was in the afternoon on a weekday and there were plenty of folks milling about checking out the fresh foods for sale.
The other market is in the Old Town in a square called Gunduliceva poljana. This one is characterized by mostly old-timers selling their fresh vegetables, olive oils and other goods. Everything was clearly fresh and it was interesting to see the very homemade packaging that some of the items were sold in.
The "Ronchi" hat craftsmanship was established in 1858. It's present owner Marina Grabovac helps mostly ladies protect themselves from sun under her charming head covers. No wonder some ladies wear them late into the night.
Well, this was one heartbreaking scene. This young lady was trying to figure out how to take her favorite hat on a transatlantic flight. I guess she opted for Cargo in the end, I couldn't wait any longer…
The picturesque morning market held every day on the Gundulic square is worth visit even if you not planning to buy anything. It's a best place in town for buying fresh vegetables and fruit.