If you’ve never been to Croatia, the one thing you should know is that it’s downright dazzling, and the city of Dubrovnik is the epitome of such beauty. Crystal clear waters glisten under the sun; boats, one of the primary forms of transportation in the area, dot the sea in every direction; and the medieval limestone walls of the Stari Grad that safeguard the terra cotta–roofed buildings are impressive. And while the Pearl of the Adriatic has long pulled visitors, it only continues to grow in popularity. Add the news of UberBoat and the country’s first underwater winery in the nearby Peljesac peninsula, and it’s easy to see why the spotlight is shining on Dubrovnik right now. Dubrovnik, the southernmost town in Croatia, is probably more popular than Croatia itself.
A walk around the ancient city walls and a cable car ride up to Mount Srd are most certainly touristy, but they’re absolutely worth it. The former is best done early in the morning to not only beat the heat, but to avoid the throngs of incoming cruisers in the middle of the day, and is a great way to introduce yourself to the Old Town. The latter is remarkable at sunset, when pink and orange hues paint the sky, making the already unparalleled views of Dubrovnik from high above even more astounding.