Car hire in Dubrovnik
Hiring a car in Dubrovnik
Known as the Pearl of the Adriatic, Dubrovnik is certainly one of Croatia’s finest gems. Located right at its southern tip on the Dalmatian Coast, this 16th-century walled city never fails to charm its visitors. From walking along its defences and looking out over a sea of terracotta roofs, to exploring its many attractions, Dubrovnik is the perfect holiday destination.
Getting from the airport to the city centre takes less than half an hour along the D8 road, once you’ve picked up your hire car. This means there’ll be no need for a transfer to your hotel and you’ll immediately be in the holiday spirit.
What you need to know
When it comes to the choices available for car hire in Dubrovnik, you may find that the airport offers more options. On the other hand, a city centre pick-up could be more convenient, especially if you are arriving by ferry from one of Croatia’s islands, such as Korcula.
There are more than a dozen hire car companies vying for your business at Dubrovnik Airport (DBV), so be sure to check our booking tool to get the best deal to suit your needs. All cars booked through Holiday Autos include free cancellation in case your situation changes and 24/7 support should you need assistance.
Where to pick up your car
All hire car companies operating out of Dubrovnik Airport have desks within the terminal building. This makes them easy to find after your plane has touched down and you have retrieved your luggage from the carousel.
If picking up a car in the city centre, bear in mind that each supplier is located in a different place. Factor such convenience in when booking to ensure your holiday goes as smoothly as possible.
“The pick-up was easy, it took 5 minutes from arriving at the desk to driving out the car, and the return took even less time.”
Where to go
Hiring a car in Dubrovnik will allow you to unlock all of the city’s incredible secrets. Very few hotels and apartments are located in the old town itself, so you may wish to drive from your accommodation to the part of the city where most of the historic attractions are located.
These include Stradun, the pedestrianised street that has become iconic in pictures of Dubrovnik, with its tower and water fountains. Along each side of this thoroughfare are shops and restaurants to allow you to really get into the holiday spirit.
As you wander the old town, you are bound to come across many of the big sights, such as the Sponza Palace, the Rector’s Palace and St Blaise Church. During your stay, you can head to one of the many seafood restaurants for a fantastic meal. Squid ink risotto is a local speciality.
Less than half an hour’s drive from Dubrovnik along the D8 road is the small seaside town of Cavtat. Having your own vehicle means you can leave at what any time suits you and return at your convenience. If all you wish to do is relax, the pretty little harbour is lined with cafes and restaurants, but with fewer tourists than in Dubrovnik. Those who prefer sightseeing can visit Cavtat’s own Rector’s Palace and compare it to the equivalent in Dubrovnik.
Within an hour from Dubrovnik by road is the Peljesac Peninsula and a trip here really benefits from having a hire car. Jump in and set off without any definite plans. You'll come across wonderful small towns and villages, such as Veliki and Meli Ston, as well as plenty of little beaches, which you may even have to yourself. Without the confines of bus timetables, the whole area is yours to explore at your leisure.
For those who really love the open road, it’s all about the longer journeys. Just up the coast, taking the E65 and D8 you will find the city of Split. You will have to pay tolls to get there, but in less than three hours you could be wandering around Diocletian’s Palace. This incredible site was constructed in the fourth century and includes more than 200 buildings, meaning there is plenty to take in.
Alternatively, set off in the other direction along the M6 and D8 for 130 km to Bosnia and Herzegovina. The famous Mostar Bridge was originally built in the 16th century but was destroyed during the conflict of the 1990s. Its reconstruction represents hope and reconciliation, linking the two sides of the town across the Neretva River.
Top attractions to visit in Dubrovnik
The city of Dubrovnik is a living, breathing museum before you’ve even stepped inside any of its institutions. Despite this, there are plenty of places you’ll want to ensure you include on your itinerary.
Having a complete set of walls around the old town is one of the things that really sets Dubrovnik apart from other cities in Croatia. As a visitor, it also gives you a fantastic opportunity to get your bearings on the whole of this historic part of the city. There have been walls here since the eighth century, but most of the building was done in mid-15th and early 16th centuries.
The walls stretch for two km, are six ms thick in places and 25m high. As you walk around them, which takes approximately two hours, you’ll come across forts and ramparts, as well as the odd bar on the outside, looking out to sea and across to the island of Lokrum.
Now the Cultural History Museum, the Rector’s Palace was constructed in the 15th century in a Gothic-Renaissance style. Take in all the detail of the building, which has had many additions and has undergone remodelling over the years. One of the highlights has to be the grand staircase in the atrium.
Also of note is the statue of Miho Pracat, dating back to 1638. He is the only commoner ever to have been given a statue in 1,000 years of the republic and it was commissioned after he bequeathed his entire wealth to the country.
Stretching right the way up Mount Srd from just outside the city walls is Dubrovnik’s cable car. In less than four minutes you will travel the 405m up the hill and be greeted with wonderful views back over Dubrovnik and beyond to the sea. At the top, there are even telescopes to help you explore the detail below.