From the "Pearl of the Adriatic" of Dubrovnik, through the islands of Korcula and Hvar, to the 1600-year-old city of Split: this 7-day itinerary presents the highlights of the Dalmatian coast. Depending on your available time this trip can be made shorter (down to 4 or 5 days) or longer.

Planning Your Trip

Begin with three nights in Dubrovnik, then travel by ferry across the crystal clear blue Adriatic to Korcula and Split. Explore Croatia's wine regions, discover hidden beaches, and visit the beautiful islands. Conclude your trip with two nights in Split, wandering the streets of Diocletian’s Palace and Old Town.

Brief itinerary

Day Activity Overnight
Day 1 Arrive in Dubrovnik Dubrovnik
Day 2 Explore Old Town Dubrovnik
Day 3 Guided kayaking tour Dubrovnik
Day 4 Cycling and wine-tasting tour Korcula
Day 5 Explore Hvar Korcula
Day 6 Day trip to the Pakleni Islands Hvar
Day 7 Explore Split Split
Day 8 Depart Split  

Detailed Itinerary

Day 1: Arrive in Dubrovnik

Adriatic Bay in Dubrovnik
The Adriatic Bay in Dubrovnik

Take the cable car up to the top of Srdj Hill, for stunning views of Dubrovnik and nearby Elafiti Islands. Walk down from the top instead of taking the cable car back down for unobstructed views of the city and less crowds. The best views from the top are if you’re looking down at the city, and start to walk to the left, make sure not to miss the path going down or else you’ll end up walking along the road which will take much longer to get down.

Catch the sunset from the water on a 2.5-hour sunset dinner cruise on a traditional Karaka replica ship or your own private boat. Taking in the scenes of Old Town and the islands from the water.

Day 2: Explore Dubrovnik

Old town of Dubrovnik
Old town of Dubrovnik, a UNESCO World Heritage Site

Spend the day exploring Old Town and the city walls at your own pace. Get a map from your hotel, wander aimlessly through the town.

Buy gifts and snacks from Gundulić Square Market, the only open-air market in Old Town. It sells authentic Dubrovnik products like dried lavender, local brandies, and dried fruits. Go before 1 pm.

Spend a relaxing afternoon at Banje Beach - a sandy stretch of beach close to Old Town. See article for a list of other beaches in Dubrovnik.

Watch the sunset from Buza Bar - a hidden gem outside the city walls overlooking the sea.

Day 3: Dubrovnik

Fort Lovrijenac
Sea kayaking past Fort Lovrijenac just outside of Dubrovnik

Explore Dubrovnik from the water and go on a guided kayaking tour around the city and Lokrum Island.

Take a 15-minute taxi boat ride and go on a half day trip to visit Lokrum island - the closest island to Dubrovnik. Take a swim in the saltwater pool (like the Dead Sea on a much smaller scale), explore the 15th-century Benedictine monastery, and stroll along the car-less trails. Boats depart from Old Town every half hour from 9am-7pm.

Go on a full day excursion to tour the Elafiti islands. 13 small untouched islands near Dubrovnik, the three most visited islands are Kolocep, Sipan, and Lopud.

Note: If three nights in Dubrovnik is too long, a one night trip to the island of Mljet is possible and then from Mljet continue on to Korcula.

Day 4: Dubrovnik to Korcula

Cycle through the vineyards in Lumburda, Korcula

Catch a two-hour ferry from Dubrovnik to Korcula in the morning. From Korcula, you can rent a scooter and explore a hidden beach or rent a bicycle and head along the southeast coastline, there is an easy, hill free bicycle route with beautiful coastal scenery and roads that lead through the Lumbarda vineyards. Bicycle rentals available all over Korcula.

Go on a cycling and wine tour with Rachel and John (a British couple who have made Korcula their home). 

Watch the sunset from Maksimilijan Garden. This tiny bar has one of the best views in Korcula.

Have dinner at one of the restaurants suggested here.

Day 5: Korcula to Hvar

Beach in Hvar

Catch a 1.5-hour ferry from Korcula to Hvar in the morning.

Rent a scooter from Hvar Town and drive through olive groves, lavender fields, and vineyards along the coastline, for no more than 250 Kuna/day ($40 USD).

Bring a bottle of wine and watch the sunset from Spanjola Fortress - the short walk up to this old 16th-century fortress is worth the hike up for the stunning views of Hvar Town and the Pakleni islands.

Day 6: Day Trip to the Pakleni Islands

View of the Pakleni islands
View of the Pakleni islands from Hvar

Take a day trip to the Pakleni Islands. Just off the coast of Hvar, these islands are filled with hidden beaches and lagoons.

Day 7: Hvar to Split

Catch a one-hour ferry from Hvar to Split in the morning. Explore Old Town’s narrow alleys, walk around Diocletian’s Palace and take in the history. For your last sunset check out the bar Dioklecijan. Grab a cocktail, sit out on the terrace overlooking the waterfront and take in the sunset.

Day 8: Depart Split

 Split's Old Town

If you have a free morning before departing, check out the Green Market (Pazar Market). A lively fruit and vegetable market, east of the palace to see how the locals shop and pick up some fruit for your flight home. Farmers from the surrounding areas of Split come into town every day to sell their seasonal local produce from sunrise till 2 pm.

Where to stay

With so many options it is hard to choose where to stay. Here are a few of our recommendations based on budget, reviews, and location. Please note that the rates change according to dates during high and low seasons.

Dubrovnik

Luxury

The Pucic Palace a boutique hotel located in Dubrovnik’s Old Town, next to the main Stradun street.  With Banje beach so close by the hotel provides guests with complimentary umbrellas and sun chairs.

Hotel Bellevue is set on a cliff overlooking Miramare Bay it has a pebbly beach on site. Offering sea views from all rooms, Dubrovnik’s Old Town is a mile away. With a spa and restaurants on site. ($350+/night)

Mid-range

Hotel Lapad located 2 miles from Dubrovnik’s Old Town or a 10-minute bus ride. The hotel is in a historic building with a large outdoor pool and a restaurant. (approx. $220/night)

Budget

Hotel Adria located 1.5 miles from Old Town in Gruz, most rooms have a balcony with views of Lapad Bay. Restaurant and cafe on site. (approx. $150/night)

Korcula

Luxury

Hotel Korcula in Korcula town (approx $275+/night) Small boutique hotel.

Mid-range

Hotel Liburna - 10 minutes walk from Old Town Korcula ($200/night) or Hotel Marko Polo - close to Old Town Korcula ($160/night)

Budget

Pension Lovric apartment style, in Lumbarda - (approx $120+/night)

Hvar

Luxury

Adriana Hvar Spa Hotel a 5-minute walk from the beach and center of Hvar, offers a spa, rooftop and swimming pool. A few bars and restaurants on site. Guests love the location and proximity to the beach($450/night)

Villa Nora Hvar, a boutique B&B with 8 rooms in Old Town, Hvar. Housed in a former 14th-century palace, serves a buffet breakfast and dinners. There are many restaurants, cafes, and bars close by. ($350/night)

Mid-range

The Palace Hvar Hotel overlooks the Hvar Bay and has great views of the Paklinski islands. A bar and restaurant on site, it is in an ideal location. (approx $150+/night)

Budget

Apartments Mare, a B&B with sweeping views of the Adriatic from every balcony and a 10-minute walk from the main center. It offers a kitchenette with a grocery store nearby. (approx $85/night)

Split

Luxury

Palace Judita Heritage Hotel a boutique luxury hotel in Old Town ($400/night)

Hotel Luxe small boutique hotel overlooking the ferry port in the town center   ($300/night)

Mid-range

Riva Luxury a small boutique hotel in the center of town ($180/night)

Budget

Apartments Lana Spalato, small B&B - 2 rooms ($80/night)

House Sandra small B&B newly refurbished in the center of town ($65/night)

Map

Map of Best of the Dalmatian Coast - 8 Days
Map of Best of the Dalmatian Coast - 8 Days

Recent Trip Reviews

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Traveler: Wendy R. - Local specialist: Veselka Huljic

We planned a 2 week vacation to visit the Dalmatian Coast. I was confident in choosing my own accommodations through Airbnb, but needed assistance in planning activities for my family, as well as places worth visiting. After completing some research online, I contacted KimKim who put me in touch with Veselka. She was extremely helpful from the start. Her communication was precise and prompt. We worked together over a period of 6 months putting the trip together. I could not have been... read more

We planned a 2 week vacation to visit the Dalmatian Coast. I was confident in choosing my own accommodations through Airbnb, but needed assistance in planning activities for my family, as well as places worth visiting. After completing some research online, I contacted KimKim who put me in touch with Veselka. She was extremely helpful from the start. Her communication was precise and prompt. We worked together over a period of 6 months putting the trip together. I could not have been more please and would highly recommend her. The communication stayed all the way till the end. I can't express how easy she made our travels - never having to worry about transportation or guides. Honestly, I just can't say enough good!

Best of the dalmatian coast - one week croatia itinerary , Croatia - Jun 5 - Jun 13, 2018

Traveler: Andrés V. - Local specialist: Ante Drmic

A TRULY MEMORABLE HOLIDAY — HVALA ANTE!

From the 2 weeks of planning to the duration of our holiday, Ante went well above and beyond his role of local specialist, which we never expected from someone we met for the first time!

He was consistently available to answer any and all questions; providing useful advice and numerous options for all aspects of the trip — activities, dining, transportation & alternatives when the weather presented setbacks. Indeed, despite thunderstorms delaying our... read more

A TRULY MEMORABLE HOLIDAY — HVALA ANTE!

From the 2 weeks of planning to the duration of our holiday, Ante went well above and beyond his role of local specialist, which we never expected from someone we met for the first time!

He was consistently available to answer any and all questions; providing useful advice and numerous options for all aspects of the trip — activities, dining, transportation & alternatives when the weather presented setbacks. Indeed, despite thunderstorms delaying our transit via Zagreb, he kept us updated via messages on the status of the subsequent flights and ensured our safe arrival. Ante hand-picked our tour guides to best fit our requirements and personality, even guiding us through Split when he could have easily found someone to take his place — putting in extra effort with no hesitance. Throughout our numerous holiday stops, he would send regular messages to ensure our safe arrival and that all transportation and activities went over smoothly; always courteous and never forceful!

This holiday was also very special to me, because of my intention to propose to my girlfriend (now fiancé) — Ante proved a great asset; providing numerous ideas for romantic venues and settings throughout the trip, culminating in a wonderful sunset dinner atop Srđ Mountain overlooking the beautiful city of Dubrovnik where she would say yes! In her words: "the proverbial cherry on top, making an already fantastic holiday... perfect!"

Thanks to Ante's positive attitude, friendly demeanor, willingness to help, and passion for his role gave us peace of mind, but also a truly personal level of attention reserved to family and friends: which is how we both felt after leaving Croatia — we visited a truly beautiful country and wonderful friend!

Best of the dalmatian coast - one week croatia itinerary , Croatia - Jun 11 - Jun 18, 2018

Traveler: Roy S. - Local specialist: Veselka Huljic

We genuinely felt the holiday met and exceeded our expectations. The hotels at Split and Dubrovnik were excellent - the Villa Nora in Hvar was also very good but slightly let down by faulty air conditioning. Veselka met us at Split airport and explained the itinerary well, delivering us to our hotel as promised. Ivan took us to Plitvice lakes, and was prompt, very friendly and informative.
Natalia from Villa Nora met us from the ferry and gave us good service there, very approachable -... read more

We genuinely felt the holiday met and exceeded our expectations. The hotels at Split and Dubrovnik were excellent - the Villa Nora in Hvar was also very good but slightly let down by faulty air conditioning. Veselka met us at Split airport and explained the itinerary well, delivering us to our hotel as promised. Ivan took us to Plitvice lakes, and was prompt, very friendly and informative.
Natalia from Villa Nora met us from the ferry and gave us good service there, very approachable - she recognised the problem with air conditioning and was awaiting an engineer to fix it. The guide who took us on the 'lavender fields and old towns' day tour in Hvar was first class (sorry can't remember his name) this included a great lunch at a tavern on the way, which was prepared specially for us and it was memorable. We walked all the way into Hvar town which was a challenge for one of us and he managed to keep us cool and resting along the way! Excellent.
Dubrovnik old town was if anything, quieter than we expected and Anada gave us a tour round late afternoon. She was very good (if we had any comment it was almost too much detailed information to take in re history facts). But it did mean that we knew where to eat, and we then walked the walls the following day.
Our kayake experience was cancelled in Hvar due to weather, but Veselka transferred this to our last day in Dubrovnik and we really enjoyed this, our guide was 'Sirjon' and he was relaxed, friendly and helped us with photos as we did not have our camera with us. We value the fact that this trip was transferred and not cancelled!

Best of the dalmatian coast - one week croatia itinerary , Croatia - Jul 19 - Jul 28, 2017

Traveler: Patrick D. - Local specialist: Vlasta Podravac

Had a problem with a hotel room but this was dealt with quickly and efficiently.

Vlasta stayed in touch during the trip to make sure all was well.

Sail dalmatian islands in 5 days, Croatia - Jun 30 - Jul 4, 2017

Traveler: Kimberly L. - Local specialist: Veselka Huljic

Amazing trip.. a must to see the islands from your own boat! An experience to not miss in life!

Veselka was beyond amazing.. made everything so easy. Our bags got lost and she got them to an island that we were on. A very wonderful experience