More and more people are booking holidays to Dubrovnik and the islands that dot the coastline. And with a fairytale city and string of good-looking beaches, it’s easy to see why.
A good-looking coastline
This is one of the Med’s best-looking spots. Tucked right down in the south-eastern tip of Croatia, the coastline is dotted with countless pebbly beaches, all backed by pine-packed hills, olive groves and vineyards.
When it comes to places to stay, Cavtat is the one to watch. This seaside town may be small, but its star is on the rise. And it seems a few famous faces have noticed – everyone from Roman Abramovich to Liz Taylor has been clocked here. It’s easy to see what tempts them. The Medieval old town is pillar to post with fine dining restaurants, and the beaches are none-too-shabby either – a string of pebbly stretches curve their way around the town’s 2 bays. On top of that, Cavtat ticks the culture boxes, too, with Roman ruins and a top-notch art gallery.
The city of Dubrovnik is a 20-minute drive from Cavtat. You half expect to see a fairytale princess wandering around the old town here. Framed by huge stone walls, it’s a web of marble streets, fortresses and turreted stone buildings. You can explore centuries-old churches, monasteries and palaces. And when you’re done with sightseeing, soak up the café culture on Stradun, the main street, or pitch up on one of the nearby beaches. If you’ve got the kids in tow, hotfoot it to Copacabana beach. The shallow water and beachfront slides here make it a firm favourite with families.
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Lopud Island is the most charismatic of the Elaphite Islands, dotted around 17 kilometres off the coast of Dubrovnik. Once the summer getaway for aristocratic families from the mainland, these days it’s an up-and-coming destination for holidaymakers, drawn by its superb beach and relaxed pace of life. There’s just one village on the entire island. It’s little more than an enclave of pretty stone houses framed by citrus groves and a picture-postcard bay.
Of all the Elaphite Islands in the Adriatic Sea, Kolocep is surely the fairest of them all. With only 165 inhabitants at the last count, and not a single car, its charms are simple and its natural beauty abundant. It has 2 picture-postcard villages set around little bays. Donje Celo is on the north-west coast and Gornje Celo is to the south-west. Elsewhere, it’s all cove-spangled coastline, pine-cloaked hills, and crumbling Medieval ruins.
Sitting on the south coast of Croatia, Dubrovnik may be steeped in history, but it’s a city with a very modern side, too. Within its solid walls, Medieval houses, ancient palaces and historic churches rub shoulders with chic boutiques, stylish bars, modern hotels and bustling eateries. Plus you've got the beaches and islands of Dubrovnik’s Adriatic Riviera right on your doorstep.
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