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Split or Dubrovnik, Croatia: Which City is Best in 2024?

Dubrovnik Old Town, Croatia

The eternal question: which is better, Split or Dubrovnik?

Both cities have their charm, they’re both UNESCO world heritage sights, with fantastic views, friendly people and plenty of options suitable for travellers on any budget.

I certainly enjoyed my time in both Croatian cities, but which is best for you? Read on to find out!

Is Split or Dubrovnik Better?

In a nutshell, Split is better for travellers on a budget, better for families and for night owls who love to party.

In contrast, Dubrovnik is fantastic for foodies, with its multiple Michelin starred restaurants, and those who want to soak up the history, and to spend their time in a bustling city with electric energy

If you have the time, visit both cities. The experiences will honestly stay with you forever and each city has something different to offer.

If you only have time for one, though, this article can help you make your decision as to which city is best for you.

Split or Dubrovnik: Which is Best for Food?

Now, if you’re anything like me, food can make or break a place! So, it’s the first aspect that I consider when I’m pondering visiting a new country or city. Let’s find out which city is best for our taste-buds.

We’ll look at which city is best for cheap food, authentic food and which city houses the best-rated food.

Authentic Croatian Fish and Potato Food
An authentic Croatian fish dish with a side of potatoes

Which City is Best for Cheap Food?

The food is notably more expensive in Dubrovnik than it is in Split. In fact, it’s estimated that food prices in Dubrovnik are 30% more expensive than in the rest of Croatia, sometimes even more.

Therefore, unfortunately you’ll struggle to find an authentic yet reasonably priced meal in Dubrovnik. Cheaper eats in the city consist primarily of burgers and pizza.

However, if you are prepared to look outside of the city, you will start to encounter what in my opinion is better food for better prices.

Cheap Places to Eat in Dubrovnik

Cheaper restaurants in Dubrovnik do exist, they are just a little more challenging to find. Here is a comprehensive list of cheaper restaurants in Dubrovnik.

Alternatively, you can view a list of cheap eats in Dubrovnik on the map below. Double click each one for more information including customer reviews.

Trip map courtesy of Wanderlog, a trip planner app on iOS and Android

Cheap Places to Eat in Split

Split has far more options available for those on a budget.

There are countless restaurants serving authentic Croatian food dotted throughout the city. And whilst the food may be cheaper in Split, you certainly aren’t compromising on quality as the city houses so many restaurants with raving five star reviews.

You can find a list of some cheap and authentic eateries in Split here.

Alternatively, you can view a list of cheap eats in Split on the map below. Double click each one for more information including customer reviews.

Best Cheap Food Winner: Split

Split is the best city to visit when it comes to cheap eats.

Which City is Best for Authentic Food?

When it comes to authentic Croatian cuisine, both cities have a range of restaurants available, however, perhaps due to its large size, Split does have slightly more options.

You then, of course, have to factor price into your choice, and the authentic options in Split are at a far more reasonable price than they are in Dubrovnik.

That’s not to say that Dubrovnik should be dismissed. Especially if you travel outside of the city, there are some gorgeous restaurant options in the Dubrovnik region.

Ella McKendrick at Tavern Arka Restaurant, Dubrovnik
Me enjoying some local wine in Tavern Arka restaurant, just outside of Dubrovnik

Authentic Restaurants in Dubrovnik

My favourite restaurants in Dubrovnik were just outside of the city. Tavern Arka in the village of Štikovica and Tavern Bonaca in the village of Sustjepan served absolutely delicious and authentic food.

The former even makes its own olive oil and has a mussel farm. Both restaurants boast excellent reviews and you can enjoy your traditional food alongside delightful views of the ocean.

Within Dubrovnik’s old town is Trattoria Carmen, one of the most highly rated restaurants in the area.

This restaurant serves fresh fish and locally-sourced wine. Whilst I didn’t enjoy it quite as much as the two above (it was still really good!), the setting, just behind one of the city walls, was simply magical.

You can view a list of authentic restaurants in Dubrovnik on the map below. Double click each one for more information including customer reviews.

Authentic Restaurants in Split

Split is quite frankly bursting with authentic restaurants which cover a range of different budgets.

One of the most popular options is Bokeria Kitchen & Wine, which you’ll definitely need to pre-book if you plan on visiting.

Villa Spiza is another popular option, ideally located in the heart of Split, with a cozy interior.

You can view a list of authentic restaurants in Split on the map below. Double click each one for more information including customer reviews.

Best Authentic Food Winner: Split

As much as I adored the food in Dubrovnik, Split takes the crown here for the sheer quantity of options available and the fact that there are authentic restaurants for all budget ranges.

Which City Has the Best Rated Food?

For best rated restaurants, although Dubrovnik has the most Michelin-starred restaurants, user reviews of them on both TripAdvisor and Google aren’t exceedingly better than restaurants which don’t have a Michelin star.

Looking at user reviews, Split has the most options in terms of restaurants rating 4.5 stars and over. This is mostly down to the quantity of restaurants in Split – there are far more restaurants in Split than there are Dubrovnik.

All of the restaurants listed above in the ‘authentic’ section for Dubrovnik and Split had a rating of 4.5 stars or more. You can view a full list of best rated restaurants for Dubrovnik here and a list of best rated restaurants in Split here.

Best Rated Food Winner: Split

Split has the most restaurants with an average user rating of 4.5 stars or over.

Tuna Steak at Restaurant in Cavtat, Croatia
A gorgeous tuna steak that I enjoyed just outside of Dubrovnik city

Split or Dubrovnik: Which City has the Best Old Town?

Both cities have stunning old towns which are listed as UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

Surrounded by city walls that kept the Republic safe for centuries, Dubrovnik’s old town is bursting with historical monuments.

The old town is home to ancient forts and mediaeval churches and a cathedral.

There are countless ways for you to view the old town from walking the impressive walls to taking to the ocean and kayaking around the walled city.

Split’s old town is not to be dismissed, with Diocletian’s Palace, beautiful historic forts and architecture, but it doesn’t quite match up to the sense of history one gets from the old town of Dubrovnik.

If you have the time, visit both and you will not be disappointed at all.

If you only have time for one, Dubrovnik’s old town will enthral you and wrap you in centuries of history as you traverse the sights.

If you’re visiting Dubrovnik’s old town, check out this list of tours and activities that you can do there.

Best Old Town Winner: Dubrovnik

Dubrovnik has the most extensive and impressive old town.

Cathedral in Dubrovnik Old Town, Croatia
Dubrovnik Old Town viewed from the city walls

Which City Provides the most Authentic Experience?

This is a tricky one, since both cities can feel at the same time historic and touristy.

As the more famous city, Dubrovnik hosts a large number of tourists every year which can make your time feel a little less authentically Croatian.

The history all around you is what really sells Dubrvonik. The city walls, the cathedrals and Mediaeval squares all create a great sense of being part of an historic city, even if the volume of tourists can take you out of that space.

Split, on the other hand, despite its bustling nightlife and popular beaches, never fails to feel authentic. It hosts fewer tourists and doesn’t have the same profile as its sister, Dubrovnik, which does make a tourist feel as though they are experiencing the city, rather than simply visiting it.

Most Authentic Experience Winner: Split

Split is ever so slightly less touristic than Dubrovnik, making the experience feel more authentic.

Split City, Croatia
The beautiful city of Split

Split or Dubrovnik: Which is Best for Nightlife?

While Dubrovnik does have hip nightclubs and bars, they are almost all found in the old town.

Split’s nightlife, however, is more sprawling. Clubs can be found from the old town, to the beach and offer a variety of experiences. Whether you want to dance on Bacvice Beach, head to a venue like Central the Club (a two-story club built in an old cinema), or spend the night drinking cocktails in Hemmingway’s Bar. 

Dubrovnik is a different case, eschews clubs in favour of bars. While it does have some clubs, they don’t match Split’s sheer variety and versatility.

If you prefer bar crawls to dancing the night away, Dubrovnik is a good choice. For everything else, you’re best off with Split.

Best Nightlife Winner: Split

Split has the best nightlife, with a range of clubs and bars for you to visit.

Split City, Croatia
Split city from above by Spencer Davis on Unsplash

Is Split or Dubrovnik Cheaper?

Split is generally cheaper than Dubrovnik.

In Dubrovnik, accommodation, in particular, can be pricey, given the sheer number of tourists arriving particularly in the high season. If you’re looking for cheaper accommodation in Dubrovnik, you’d be well served looking just outside of the city.

To give you an idea of the differences in costs, I spent £120 per night on a 1 bedroom apartment overlooking Dubrovnik compared to £70 per night on a 2 bedroom apartment in Split.

You can view a list of budget hotel options in Dubrovnik here.

For public transport, Split is notably cheaper than Dubrovnik, although Dubrovnik is better suited to walking than Split, so you may not have to use public transport during your stay.

Local Taxis and Uber are available in both Split and Dubrovnik, and the cost depends on your journey and the demand at the time.

To give you an idea of costs, an Uber ride from Dubrovnik harbour to the old town cost me £4, which I didn’t think was too bad for a 10 minute drive.

Then there’s food. As we’ve already discussed, Split does have more budget restaurants available serving a wider range of cuisines than Dubrovnik has.

Cheapest City Winner: Split

Split is a lot cheaper than Dubrovnik in terms of accommodation and food.

Split City, Croatia
Split city by Tom Wheatley on Unsplash

Split or Dubrovnik: Which is Best Visited as a Day Trip?

There’s so much to do in both cities that it feels like a day trip doesn’t really give you enough time to see what they have to offer.

I visited Split as a day trip and was left wanting more. And after three days in Dubrovnik I still felt like I hadn’t got to experience all the sights!

If you had to visit one of these gorgeous cities for a day trip and budget wasn’t an issue then I’d personally say to choose Split. All of the key city sights are easily viewable in one day whereas it will take at least a couple of days to see what Dubrovnik has to offer.

However, if you are on a budget then perhaps Dubrovnik is the destination best visited as a day trip. That way you can see what the city has to offer without breaking the bank on the expensive accommodation there.

Best Visited Via Day Trip Winner: Tie!

If you are not put off by Dubrovnik’s higher prices then I’d recommend visiting Split via day trip. However, if budget is a key factor in your decision making then you’re best visiting Dubrovnik as a day trip to avoid the higher prices of accommodation.

Dubrovnik Old Town Harbour, Croatia
View from the city walls of Dubrovnik old town’s small harbour and Lokrum island

Split or Dubrovnik: Which has the Best Beaches?

The Croatian coastline is gorgeous, and both Split and Dubrovnik have beaches that will take your breath away.

The best beaches are found further away from the cities, some a 20 minute walk away and others a 20 minute drive.

To the south of Split are some gorgeous sandy beaches. Kašjuni Beach, a 20 to 30 minute walk south of Split, is arguably one of the best beaches in the area.

However, due to its close proximity to the city, this beach can get pretty busy. And if you’re heading to the beach to relax, this may be a deal-breaker.

It’s still not quite as popular as Bačvice, just north of Split. I definitely wouldn’t recommend this beach if you wish to avoid crowds.

The beaches at Dubrovnik are not quite as scenic or as popular as Split.

Sveti Jakov beach is only a 20 minute walk from Dubrovnik old town and is popular with locals.

For the very best beaches, however, you will have to travel further afield.

Some of my favourite beaches that I encountered in Croatia were a 30 minute drive from Dubrovnik, in a town called Cavtat. Whilst the beaches here were stony instead of sandy, the ocean was an incredible vibrant blue colour and the waters weren’t too busy. Plus, the views were incredible!

Best Beaches Winner: Tie!

Split has more options when it comes to beaches. It also houses some sandy beaches which Dubrovnik doesn’t. However the beaches around Split can be heaving with people. There are some quaint, rocky beaches near Dubrovnik. At both locations the best beaches are slightly further away from the city.

Ella McKendrick in the Sea in Cavtat Villiage, Croatia
Cavtat beach, a 30 minute drive from Dubrovnik

Split or Dubrovnik: Which City has the Most Sights and Attractions?

Dubrovnik and Split are both truly historic cities, with Split being founded by the Greeks sometime between the 3rd and 2nd centuries BC and Dubrovnik being founded around the year 614. Dubrovnik was founded as one of the two Republics in the area, and both were at one time under the control of the Venetian state.

With history like this, it’s not surprising Split and Dubrovnik have a plethora of historic sights and attractions for their visitors.

In this case, Dubrovnik has the edge over Split. The city is rich in history with countless historical monuments for you to visit from the city walls to the fortresses, Cathedral and even the nearby Lokrum island which is easily accessible by boat.

Take a look at some of the sights Dubrovnik has to offer, and the same for Split, so you can best plan your trip.

Best Sights Winner: Dubrovnik

Dubrovnik houses the most sights and attractions including the city walls and ancient fortresses.

Lovrijenac Fort, Dubrovnik Old Town, Croatia
Lovrijenac Fort, Dubrovnik

Which has the Best Access to Other Sights and Activities? 

Amazing as these cities are, most travellers will still want to venture out and see more of what Croatia has to offer. Each city is afforded different opportunities by their locations.

Dubrovnik is close to Bosnia and Montenegro, which are best accessed by car (there is a bus from Dubrovnik to Montenegro, but that’s a six hour trip, so best to take a car unless you have a really interesting book). Alternatively, you can book a guided trip to Montenegro from Dubrovnik here.

Split is close to the spectacular Krka waterfalls in Krka National Park and has easy access to numerous islands such as Hvar, Brač and Vis.

Those wishing to visit the Krka Waterfalls can drive to the scenic town of Skradin which is just 1 hour away and then take a scenic boat ride into the heart of the park. Ferries leave the port regularly and have plenty of space for walking passengers, and those with cars.

For more information on Krka National Park, I’ve written an in-depth article on planning a day trip from Split.

The islands are accessible by ferry from Split, with a journey time of one hour to ninety minutes each way. It is easy to visit each island via a day trip and whilst I was in Split I enjoyed a day trip to Hvar.

Best Access to Other Sights and Activities: Split

Split is close to Krka National Park (one of Croatia’s key sights) and has easy access to numerous islands including Hvar, Brač and Vis.

Skradinski Buk Waterfall in Krka National Park, Croatia
Krka National Park near Split

Split or Dubrovnik: Which is Better for Game of Thrones fans?

Croatia is immensely popular as a filming location for the likes of Star Wars, and BBC’s The Musketeers, but is most known as the filming location for Game of Thrones.

Both Dubrovnik and Split have a plethora of excellent locations to visit, but Dubrovnik wins with its sheer quantity.

Whether it’s the Trsteno Arboretum or St. Dominika Street, Dubrovnik has no shortage of locations that make you feel like you’re walking in the footsteps of the characters.

There’s a plethora of Game of Thrones tours which you can book on in Dubrovnik. Check them out here.

If you’re heading to Split then there’s a number of Game of Thrones tours there as well.

Best for Game of Thrones Fans: Dubrovnik

Dubrovnik houses the most filming locations of Games of Thrones.

Dubrovnik Old Town Boat Port
The port in Dubrovnik’s Old Town

Which is Bigger, Split or Dubrovnik?

The second largest city in Croatia (behind Zagreb), and home to 200,000 people, Split is a larger city than its little sister, Dubrovnik.

Dubrovnik is home to only 42,000 people, but has a charm that draws large numbers of tourists every summer to bask in its beauty and history. 

Dubrovnik makes the most of its smaller size by being full of history, and perfect for walking.

Start with a stroll along the beautiful city walls, then take in the city gates, both of which kept the city from being invaded for years, then walk across Loggia Square and make your way to Saint Saviour’s Church. Or you could make a beeline for the beach from the Old Town and be there in less than 20 minutes.

Biggest City: Split

Split is bigger than Dubrovnik.

Split City, Croatia
Split city by Snowscat on Unsplash

Is Split or Dubrovnik Warmer?

Both cities are on the Mediterranean coast, and enjoy warm temperatures for most of the year.

The temperatures for both Split and Dubrovnik regularly hit 25 celsius and above in the summer months, with July and August being exceptionally glorious. 

On average, Dubrovnik hits highs of 28 celsius, with lows of 20 celsius.

Split, on the other hand, can hit 30 celsius, with lows of 16. So, Split is warmer than Dubrovnik, but the temperature also drops further at the same time.

Warmest City: Split

Although similar in temperature, Split reaches slightly higher temperatures than Dubrovnik.

Cats in Dubrovnik Old Town, Croatia
Cats in Dubrovnik old town

Is Split or Dubrovnik Better for Families? 

For families, Split has the edge over Dubrovnik. Split’s beaches are perfect for a family day relaxing, reading, sandcastles and swimming in the sea.

If the beaches are too crowded, or you’re in the mood for something different, hop on the ferry and relax on one of the islands with uninterrupted views, and without the crowds.

Dubrovnik is quaint, picturesque, and fantastic for walks around town, but the steady stream of tourists can interrupt your peace in a way you don’t get in Split.

Neither is a bad choice, but Split does seem to have more for families to do on their stay.

Best for Families: Split

Split is slightly more suited to families.

Pile Gate, Dubrovnik Old Town, Croatia
Pile Gate, the entrance to Dubrovnik old town

Is Split or Dubrovnik Better for Couples?

Both beautiful cities, full of romantic sights and attractions for a couple’s getaway, but which one is best?

This one has to go to Dubrovnik. Walk along the city walls, drink Croatian wine in Peljesac before taking a cable car up to the top of Mount Syd to watch the sunset over the Adriatic.

If that wasn’t enough, you two can kayak to Lokrum Islands and then head back to Dubrovnik for a Dalmation Cooking Class to top off your day. Dubrovnik is perfect for a romantic getaway.

Split has plenty of beautiful beaches and wine tasting not unlike Dubrovnik, but Split doesn’t have mountains for you to climb, nor an island within kayaking distance.

You can’t go wrong with either city, but I think Dubrovnik has a little more variety in your romantic activities.
For those looking to plan a romantic trip in Croatia, click here for romantic activities in Dubrovnik, and here for Split’s romantic offerings.

Best for Couples: Dubrovnik

Dubrovnik is a more romantic destination than Split.

Dubrovnik Old Town, Croatia

Is Split or Dubrovnik Better for Solo Travellers?

For the most part, Split is better for solo travellers, being cheaper than Dubrovnik in everything from accommodation to public transport. 

Crime is relatively low in Croatia, so solo travellers can feel comfortable walking around in either city. 

Split has a greater number of public transport options than Dubrovnik, including a cycle hire scheme, while still remaining cheap and affordable.

Solo travellers to Split will have a better experience on a budget without comprising gorgeous views, historic sights or their experience on the whole.

Dubrovnik is still a great time for a solo traveller, but Split just has the edge here.

Best for Solo Travellers: Split

Split is better for solo travellers as it is easier and cheaper to travel around and has more nightlife.

Split, Croatia
Split City

Split or Dubrovnik: Which is Easiest to Travel Around?

When in Split to Dubrovnik, you’ll have plenty of ways to get around town. Both cities have an extensive public transport network that can be accessed cheaply and gets you to your destination quickly. 

Split has a greater variety of options than Dubrovnik, boasting a bus network, trains and even a bike hire scheme so you can enjoy the sights and stay active while making your way through Split.

Dubrovnik has a rather reliable bus service that will take you around town, but lacks the diversity of options that Split has.

Local taxis and Uber are available in both Split & Dubrovnik, and are still relatively cheap, although the length of your journey, and Uber’s surge pricing may affect your journey cost, so bear that in mind.

Easiest to Travel Around: Split

Split has a better public transport system than Dubrovnik.

Dubrovnik Old Town, Croatia
Dubrovnik Old Town

Split or Dubrovnik: Which is Best for Accommodation?

Hotels in Split are noticeably cheaper than in Dubrovnik.

3 Star hotels in Dubrovnik average £800-£1000 for a week’s stay for two people in July, while Split averages £580-£800 for the same period. 

Both destinations are very popular, especially in the summer season, and hotels get booked up quickly so booking your accommodation in advance is essential.

Those looking to stay in Dubrovnik may be best served by searching for accommodation further outside the city itself.

Both Split and Dubrovnik have no shortage of four and five star hotels and resorts, although Split is once again cheaper at £1,500 average price, compared to the £2000-£3000 of Dubrovnik. 

Split is best for accommodation, with its variety of locations and lower overall costs than Dubrovnik.

Best for Accommodation: Split

You get a lot more for your money in Split in terms of accommodation.

Split City, Croatia
Split city from above by Spencer Davis on Unsplash

Split or Dubrovnik: Which is Best for Luxury Travel?

Dubrovnik is undoubtedly the best for luxury travel. It has a greater number of four and five star resorts than Split, and its plethora of Michelin starred restaurants allow any traveller to dine and rest in luxury. 

Many travel companies provide luxury travel packages to Dubrovnik, and many can be tailored to your preferences if you wish.

Split can still be a luxurious trip, no doubt about it (a trip to the islands can confirm as much), but Dubrovnik’s touristic nature embraces luxury travel in a way that Split does not.

View a list of luxury hotels in Dubrovnik here.

Best for Luxury Travel: Dubrovnik

Dubrovnik has more five star hotels and Michelin-starred restaurants than Split.

Cathedral in Dubrovnik Old Town, Croatia
The cathedral in Dubrovnik’s old town

Split or Dubrovnik: Which is the Best for Budget Travel?

Split is undoubtedly the best for budget travel.

It’s cheaper than Dubrovnik, making it better for a budget right from the start. Its accommodations, food and sights are all cheaper, and do not compromise the experience one bit.

For those wishing to save on accommodation, AirBnB will be a great help.

Both Split and Dubrovnik favour hotels to hostels, which can drive up the cost of your trip exponentially, especially during the high season. Do remember to book accommodation in advance, since both cities can be very popular with tourists, and accommodation can quickly be in short supply.

Click here to view a list of budget hotels in Split.

Split is home to cheaper restaurants than Dubrovnik, and offers more variety in the type of food.

Public transport is also better in Split, whether you prefer to take the train, the bus, or to cycle through the town, all of which are available to travellers at a low cost.

Dubrovnik can be done on a budget, make no mistake, but as a city, Split is much more budget friendly.

Best City for Budget Travel: Split

The hotels and restaurants in Split are cheaper than those in Dubrovnik.

Split City, Croatia
Split city from above by Spencer Davis on Unsplash

Is it Cheaper to Fly to Split or Dubrovnik?

I was surprised to see there was a difference in flight prices when I looked into this!

Cheap flights to Dubrovnik start at £127 even towards the end of tourist seasons and even budget airlines can be £300 per ticket. Flights to Split, on the other hand, start at £84 and barely reach above the £250 mark.

Travellers wishing to save money could fly into Split, and take the ferry from Split to Dubrovnik. It will add a few hours to your journey time, but would leave you with more money in your pocket for your holiday.

More information on the Split-Dubrovnik ferry can be found later in this article.

Best City for Cheap Flights: Split

Flights to and from Split are on the whole cheaper than they are to and from Dubrovnik.

Dubrovnik Old Town, Croatia
Dubrovnik Old Town from the city walls

How to Travel from Split to Dubrovnik

When you have the option to visit not one but two UNESCO World Heritage sights on your journey, you’d be remiss not to make the most of it.

There are a few options for travelling between these two cities, so take a look at them and see which works best for your budget and itinerary.

Split to Dubrovnik Map

How Far is it from Split to Dubrovnik?

Between Split and Dubrovnik lies 143 miles (230 kilometres) of Adriatic coast to take in.

There’s currently no train service between the two cities, so your travel options are bus, car or ferry.

Buses are the cheapest option, at £11-£22 per ticket, but take the longest at up to five hours, depending on the bus company and the route.

Driving is the quickest way to travel between the two at nearly three hours, and gives you multiple routes like the A1 Motorway for a speedy journey, or the more scenic coastal road if you want to take in the sights, and maybe stop for a coffee on the coast during your journey.

We’ll look at each option in detail below.

Tip! The quickest way to travel between Split and Dubrovnik is via car. It’s possible to hire a car from one city and drop it off in the other, which is really convenient, just check that the car rental company offers this service before booking.

Driving from Dubrovnik to Split, Croatia
The view on the drive from Dubrovnik to Split

Split to Dubrovnik by Bus

Buses from Split to Dubrovnik are cheap, but not particularly fast or regular.

There is one bus every three hours that runs from Split into Dubrovnik’s Gruz neighbourhood. Once you arrive in Dubrovnik Gruz, you will need to take another bus into Dubrovnik itself as Gruz is on the outskirts of the city.

The journey can take anywhere from four hours, to five and a half hours depending on the route you take.

Split to Dubrovnik by Car

Travelling by car is much quicker than by bus, clocking in at around three hours depending on your route and whether you make any stops along the way.

There are two main routes: the coastal road and the A1 Motorway.

The coastal route is by far the most scenic route, but can also make for a slower trip, especially in the summer months when traffic builds up. 

The A1 Motorway is a quicker route, taking you on a 100 kilometre trip from Dugopolje (near Split) to the town of Ploce, before rejoining the coastal route with precious minutes shaved off of your journey time. The A1 has a toll for cars that costs 55 Croatian Kuna (£6).

Those wanting to take a few scenic rest stops along the route can visit the Kravica Waterfall, the Mostar Old Bridge Viewpoint or Zlatni Rat Beach Hotel for a drink and a bite in scenic style.

The Neum Crossing

Both driving routes will take you through the Klek-Neum Corridor which takes you through the country of Bosnia & Herzegovina, so keep your passports handy.

I was actually pretty nervous for the crossing, especially because I made it in the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, but the border crossings proved to be really straightforward. Just hand over your passports for a brief inspection and you’re good to explore a pocket of another spectacular country before crossing the border back into Croatia.

Neum Border Crossing between Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina
The Neum crossing from Croatia into Bosnia and Herzegovina – you have to make this crossing when journeying between Dubrovnik and Split

Split to Dubrovnik by Ferry

Kapetan Luka runs ferries from Split to Dubrovnik, but not year-round with two routes available.

The first route runs daily from May to October, departing Split at 7:40am, and arriving at Dubrovnik by midday.

The second route only runs from June to September. Both routes travel via Brac, Korcula and Mjet. The first route makes an additional stop at Hvar, while the second goes via Makarska. 

The journey time for both routes is approximately four hours, forty minutes. Tickets for Kapetan Luka ferries are 230 Kuna, or £25.50 (approximately).

Jadrolinija also runs a catamaran service from June to September. There is one ferry per day, leaving Split at 15:30, and arriving in Dubrovnik by 21:25. This is perfect for travellers arriving later into Split and still wanting to visit Dubrovnik, since the Dubrovnik to Split Ferry leaves at 07:00 the next morning and arrives in Split at 12:55.

Tickets for Kapetan Luka ferries can be purchased here, and click here for Jadrolinija tickets.

Ferry from Split, Croatia
A ferry from Split

How many days should I Spend in Split and Dubrovnik?

It only takes a few days to visit Dubrovnik in its entirety, so unless you’re planning on taking trips to Kosovo or Montenegro, 5 days will be more than enough for you to soak in the sights and the culture. 

Split, with its islands, port and bustling nightlife, can take longer to explore and fully experience, and a week would be a perfect amount of time to spend there, basking in an authentic Croatian experience.

Final Thoughts

Split and Dubrovnik are two gorgeous cities on Croatia’s coastline. There are numerous reasons to visit each of the cities as they both offer a unique experience. So, if you can, I would highly recommend adding both to your itinerary for the ultimate Croatian experience. is a free online resource. If you have found this website useful for planning your adventures, you can show your support by buying me a coffee. Thanks so much!

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Thursday 18th of August 2022

Outstanding guide thanks! I'm planning my trip to Croatia at the moment and found this really helpful. I'm really keen to see the Krka Waterfalls so that's making me lean more towards Split but then on the other hand I really want to see the Dubrovnik old town! I think I might have to save up more and visit both!

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