Dubrovnik's City Walls—a grand work of ancient engineering. Since its construction between the 12th and 17th centuries, the walls have protected the city and its people. Standing tall and proud like the sentinels of olden times. Watchers of history unraveled.
Instead, their purpose has evolved, and today Dubrovnik City Walls continue to be as useful to their citizens—as the region's most popular tourist attraction.
Their limestone blocks and towering height have stood the test of time. It sounds cliche; I know. But as you walk the walls between timeworn towers and forts, you will discover this unique experience is hard to find elsewhere.
The walls are not just a tool, a physical barrier but also a symbol of resilience and determination. A way to show you how the tiny Dubrovnik Republic city-state achieved greatness.
The views from the walls are sensational. Ask anyone who visited them. Red tiled roofs of the Old Town, the clear blue waters of the Adriatic, and the lush green hills surrounding the city and Lokrum Island.
From a high vantage point of the walls, the fortified city below reveals a new perspective of its architectural sights. As you look across the Dubrovnik Old Town skyline, your eye jumps from one interesting thing to the next. Gothic and Renaissance churches, palaces, bell towers, and fountains.
Best time to visit
Some say the best time to enjoy the Dubrovnik wall walk is late afternoon before the sun sets. As you stroll atop the massive Dubrovnik City Walls surrounding the Old City—the setting sun washes the contours of the city in a vivid orange glow. And I agree.
But on my other visits, I also enjoyed walking the walls of Dubrovnik at the earliest in the morning. This way, you can enjoy the stunning views of the city in a more relaxed and peaceful setting.
If you’re visiting any time during peak season, you should know the walls open at 8 am. I advise you to get there 10 minutes beforehand as Dubrovnik is a popular cruise stop.
Sometime around 9 am, it gets awfully busy once the busloads of tourists start rolling in to jam up the walkways. Check out the Dubrovnik City Walls opening hours schedule.
|1 January – 28 February||10:00 – 15:00|
|1 March – 31 March||09:00 – 15:00|
|1 April – 31 May||09:00 – 18:30|
|1 June – 31 July||08:00 – 19:30|
|1 August – 15 September||08:00 – 19:00|
|15 September – 31 October||09:00 – 18:00|
|1 November – 31 December||09:00 – 15:00|
To summarize, the best time is entering at 8 am for the most enjoyable experience. You will beat the crowds that turn up around 9-10 am. It is quiet as many of the cruise ships have not arrived in port yet. Also, you avoid the hottest part of the day, between 11 am and 3 pm.
City Walls Tickets
Entry tickets for the City Walls complex are €35 per adult person. Tickets for children from ages 7 to 18 cost €15. Ticket prices increased by approximately €3 in January 2023, when Croatia adopted Euro as its main currency.
The good news is that they now include an entrance to Western Outer Wall, which it didn't before. Western Outer Wall stretches between forts Bokar and Minčeta.
Relatively unknown and scarcely visited but a hidden gem. Constructed in 1351 as a defense of the main City Wall. They have a separate entrance from the Main Walls.
It is only possible to visit the walls and fort once with a single ticket.
The entrance cost for an adult is so not cheap. However, the experience you will get is absolutely superb. You can also have peace of mind knowing most of the money is going towards the upkeep of the walls.
The Dubrovnik Pass grants access to 12 of Dubrovnik's premier attractions. You can use it to visit the places like the renowned Rectors Palace or the interesting Ethnographic Museum. But most importantly, it grants free entrance to the Dubrovnik City Walls.
Dubrovnik Pass has three versions:
- Daily Pass (1 Day) at €35
- Three-Day Pass at €45
- Seven-Day Pass at €55
The City Walls tickets cost €35, the same as the Daily Dubrovnik Pass. The Dubrovnik Pass is a good value and worth it considering the extra benefits you get for the same price.
Dubrovnik is already an expensive city compared to some neighboring travel destinations. There is no reason not to buy the budget-friendly Dubrovnik Pass and save some money.
Where are the entrances?
OK, you got everything you need; bought your Dubrovnik Pass and brought your sunscreen. Now what, where do you go?
- after Pile Gate, on Stradun Street (marked No. 9 on the map)
- by the Ploče Gate, located near St. Luke Fort (marked No. 23 on the map)
- by St. John’s Fortress, at the Maritime Museum (No. 20 on the map)
Alternatively, if the Old Town is full to the brim, as it can be in the peak tourist season, you should pass by the main entrance and go straight to the port. There you will climb to the top of the walls using the entrance of St. John's Fort. It's the one with the least foot traffic and no lines.
Walking the Dubrovnik City Walls
When you climb to the top of the walls, you will notice arrow signs pointing to directions. The wall walk goes only one way (counterclockwise).
So if you start your route of the Dubrovnik City Walls walk at the Pile Gate, you will be walking towards the seaside. From there, the route follows the edges of Old Town. You pass by many towers and bastions along the way, doing a full circle and eventually coming back to the start.
There are no signs with information along the wall of any kind. So, I made a map that provides an overview of what you can see on the Walls of Dubrovnik.
The walls are of four different sections, each with distinct sights.
The western section is the first one you walk if you enter at the Pile gate. The hike along the western side shows the views of the Pile Gate drawbridge and people entering the Old Town. Next, you pass the Puncjela Tower and Bokar Fort. Bokar Fort guards the Pile Bay western harbor (a popular kayak tour start). This part of the walls features the best views of Fort Lovrijenac across Pile Bay.
The route will get you to the southern seaside part of the walls. This side of the walls is a more open design with no large forts to obstruct the view of the sea. As you saunter over the top of six bastions along the way, your eyes redirect attention.
The stunning views of the Adriatic sea and the nearby Lokrum island become the focal point of your walk. You hunch down to get into the tiny watchtowers and turrets to imagine life as a city guard patrolling on the walls. If you look down the wall at sea, you will most likely see sea kayaks paddling along the walls—and cliff jumpers at the Buža bar.
You will reach St. John Fort and the eastern part of the City Walls as you continue along the walls trail. The view scenes center around the Old Harbor, ships going in and out, and people promenading.
As you move past the harbor, you meet the Revelin Fort and Ploče Gate at the northeastern end of the city. The road takes you to the north side, where you walk past towers and bastions and up many steps toward Minčeta.
Minčeta dominates the skyline of the north side, a round tower topped with a crown of crenellations. The highest point in the Old Town.
The only downside to visiting Minceta Fortress is its narrow stairs. And the queue of people going up and down as people. But trust me, it's worth it for the unique photo ops; you'll be glad you did the climb.
After you have toured Minčeta, you descend back down the last bit towards the Pile Gate entrance from which you came in. You have then completed the walk around the Dubrovnik City Walls.
The route is not flat. It goes up and down the pathway with many, many steep steps. How many steps might you be wondering?
Combining the steps with the fact that there is very little shade, I would say the walls walk is not ideal for the elderly or young children.
City Walls cafe and bar stops
There are three cafes/bars along the route around the walls. They've got snacks, coffee, cold drinks, fresh juices, ice cream, and water.
- St. Peter Bar (No. 29 on the map)
- Salvatore (No. 30 on the map)
- Minčeta (No. 31 on map)
They have umbrellas for some shade and a lovely cool breeze from outdoor A/C units. On top of that, they all have awesome views of the sea and the Old Town. They're a perfect refreshment stop during the walk.
Prepare your wallet, though; these are quite pricier than the rest of the cafes in the Old Town. Some of them don't accept card payments.
In case you were wondering, public toilets are available throughout the City Walls walk.
The fort, also known as St. Lawrence Fortress, sits on a steep rock high above the Adriatic Sea. As you climb the vast stairwells up to the fort, you can almost feel the weight of history pressing down upon you.
Once you reach the top of the stairs, the fort entrance provides a magnificent bird's eye view of Old Town.
When you enter Fort Lovrijenac, you'll find high stone walls and arched passageways. This formidable structure, with its massive walls, was built in the 11th century to protect Dubrovnik from invasion.
You can tour the old prison cells and storerooms. See the embattlements, cannons, and cannon balls. Enjoy the great views but expect little apart from that. Sadly, the fort inside is empty—no displays or information on the history of this fortress. There is no museum here with historical artifacts to browse.
If you're a Game Of Thrones TV series fan, this fortress will be recognizable as the Red Keep in King's Landing. You will most likely join a Game of Thrones walking tour. All GOT tours include visiting Lovrijenac fort, as many scenes were filmed there.
Whether a history buff or GOT TV show fan, this stunning fort will leave you in awe.
Western Outer Walls
The last time I went to this museum was during peak season, and I was completely alone. If you want to get away from the crowds and hide from the sun for a bit, this is the place for you.
Tips for walking the walls
The walls can also be long and tiring, so it's important to come well-prepared. Here are some tips to help you have the best experience while walking the Dubrovnik City Walls.
City Walls Tours
I've been to the Walls plenty of times. Solo and as a part of a guided tour group. It is gratifying to solely stroll the walls, feel the sea breeze, and take in the breathtaking views.
But you soon realize the depth of the history and stories behind these stone walls you are missing out on. You should include a guided tour in your itinerary to fully experience the beauty and wonder of Old Town.
If you join a tour that goes on the Walls with a knowledgeable guide, you will delve into the history of the Walls. A good guide will take you back thousands of years from when Dubrovnik first started. Trace the tales of battles fought and wars won, of the Dubrovnik Republic rising and falling.
With a guide by your side, you truly appreciate the history and beauty of the City Walls and understand why they are such an important part of Dubrovnik's cultural heritage.
With so many tours, you're sure to find the perfect one to fit your needs and interests.
Is it worth paying to walk Dubrovnik City Walls?
My review reflects my experience of visiting Dubrovnik ramparts many times.
Walking the walls is expensive at €35 per person ticket, sure.
Yet it appears that, in this instance, money does buy happiness. Two hours of joy in the shape of a truly extraordinary experience. Think of it as a worthy investment to get the best out of your Dubrovnik vacation.
Still don't believe me? Just look at Tripadvisor or Google reviews of this attraction. You will see every other person saying Dubrovnik City Walls are expensive but worth it.
You come to Dubrovnik to walk the Walls and pay accordingly. Yet if you buy the Dubrovnik Pass, you get access to some other sites for free and at a discount to others.
Dubrovnik City Walls
The Dubrovnik City Walls are a series of defensive stone walls surrounding the Dubrovnik Old Town in southern Croatia. The walls are made from limestone, reinforced with forts, towers, bastions and gates. The walls are open to visitors and provide stunning views of the town, harbour and nearby island Lokrum.
Product Brand: Dubrovnik City Walls
- Stunning views from the top of the walls
- Interesting history
- Easy to navigate
- Included in Dubrovnik Pass
- Ticket expensive compared to other attractions
- Walls can get crowded
- Walking the walls is physically demanding
- No signs and descriptions along the route
Do the walk
Walking the Walls of Dubrovnik is a true feast for the senses. With the salty sea air, the sound of waves crashing below, and the orange rays of the setting sun outlining the Walls. It's a journey through time, one that allows you to experience the city's beauty in a way that can only be done on foot.
Whether you're a history buff or simply looking for a unique experience, walking the Dubrovnik Walls is a must-do for anyone visiting the city. So lace up your walking shoes, put on sunscreen, and walk along one of the world's most historic fortifications.
When is the last call for entering the City Walls?
The end of working hours is also the last entry into Dubrovnik City Walls. So, for example, if working hours end at 18.00, then you can enter until 18.00 as well.
Do you have to pay to walk Dubrovnik City Walls?
Yes, you will pay to walk Dubrovnik City Walls. If you buy the Dubrovnik Pass, it is included, but you paid for it. The only people that don't need to pay are children under seven years and citizens of Dubrovnik county.
Can you go if you are scared of heights?
I had a companion on the walk with me that was scared of heights. Some sections of walls were low, and she was a little nervous, but overall it was a great and safe walk for her.
Can I take a rucksack on the Walls?
Yes, you can take a rucksack, bag, and basically any luggage when visiting the Dubrovnik City Walls. I recommend keeping the bag small and light as there are a lot of steep steps, and the walk can be hard to do with a big bag.
Can I take my pet dog on the Walls?
You are allowed to take your pet dog with you on Dubrovnik City Walls, but they must be kept on a leash at all times. Staff mentions that the pets must be supervised at all times. Pets must not be left on the Walls unattended, and pet owners must pick up after their pets. Also, make sure your pet does not disturb other visitors.