While Dubrovnik is famed for its walled old town and medieval fortifications, beyond the city lies a dramatic coastline that’s just as alluring. It’s less about sandy stretches here, instead, expect to find beautiful rugged beaches, from rocky coves to fine shingle arcs. Whether you’re after secluded swimming spots, castaway island vibes or action-packed family fun, here are seven of the best beaches in Dubrovnik to get the most out of your stay.
For secluded swimming
Danče Beach is a hidden gem where locals take early-morning swims. While there is no sand, a scattering of flat rocks offers sunbathing spots. However, the main draw is the aquamarine water that laps the rocky cove. A laid-back beach bar serves drinks throughout the day. It’s only a 10-minute walk from the old town, yet has remained off most travellers’ radars. Making it one of the best beaches for a more secluded retreat.
Banje is the closest beach to the city, just a short walk from Ploče Gate. It’s mostly pebbly, with crystal-clear shallows that are ideal for children to play in. There are jet skis and inflatables, plus showers. You can rent deckchairs or sun loungers, although they’re quite pricey (take your own towel to save money). While it’s one of the best beaches in Dubrovnik for swimming and sunbathing, it’s pretty crowded in July and August.
A more tranquil alternative to Banje is Sveti Jakov: one of the best beaches in Dubrovnik, according to the locals. The white pebble and soft shingle beach is rarely busy, despite its proximity to the city – a 20-minute meander from the centre. This secluded half-moon overlooks Dubrovnik’s iconic fortress and is a great spot for watching sunsets, bathing the old town in a warm golden glow. The beach is accessed by a long stairway, and there are sunshades, showers, a bar, and restaurant – the perfect place for trying some traditional food.
For castaway vibes
Cast adrift from mainland Croatia, the Elaphiti islands – Koločep, Lopud, Šipan – are a trio of stunning specks in the Adriatic. They’re lush, pine-scented and also one of the best beaches in Dubrovnik for kayaking, swimming and snorkelling. For travellers who want to slip down a few gears, Šunj on Lopud is one of Croatia’s rare sandy beaches, with a chilled bar for barefoot relaxation. The islands are a quick taxi-boat ride from Gruž port.
Some of the most family-friendly Dubrovnik beaches lie on the Lapad peninsula, three kilometres west of town. Lapad beach is an easy bus journey (no.6) from Pile. Shallows overseen by lifeguards are safe for children to splash around in, while you’ll find a shady soft play area on the pedestrianised Šetalište kralja Tomislava. Sunloungers dot the sand, and there are showers too.
The tiny islet and lush nature reserve of Lokrum is known for its ruined Napoleonic fort and peacock-guarded botanical gardens. However, few people know of its dramatic coastline – best explored by kayak. Some of the leading companies offering kayaking tours are Kayak Tours Dubrovnik or Adventure Dubrovnik. Many include a stop on the island, with sunbathing on its rocky beaches and swimming in its crystalline waters.
For multi-generational fun
Northwest of Dubrovnik, Copacabana beach wraps around Seka Bay, on the Babin Kuk peninsula. It’s one of the best beaches in Dubrovnik for all the family, with parachute boat rides, pedalos, jet skis, water chutes, and banana boats. There are canoes for a gentler way of tracing the coastline. An all-day bar, occasional live DJs and summer parties add to the buzzy vibe.
A lot of our villas in Dubrovnik are within walking distance to a nearby beach, have a look at our collection here. Alternatively, get in touch with our concierge team who can help you find exactly what you’re looking for… with or without bells and whistles on.