Dubrovnik is one of the most stunning cities in the world. It is also jam-packed with unique photo locations. Our photography guide to Dubrovnik gives you the best photo locations to capture stunning photos from at the best time. I have lived and photographed Dubrovnik for over 15 years. So I have included a couple of my easier to reach but lesser-known locations as well. Being positioned pretty much directly south, certain spots are better suited to sunrise rather than sunset and vice versa. Our photography guide to Dubrovnik will make sure you make the most of your time in the city to capture some amazing shots.
Lazareti (old quarantine)
We’ll kick off with one of my favourite locations in Dubrovnik. Behind the Lazareti buildings which were once used as a quarantine station for the Republic of Ragusa. Located a short walk from the Ploce Gate you will pass a small supermarket. Turn right down a little ally and you will come out on the rocks below with a fantastic view of the old town and harbour.
This is a great spot for sunset as the sun sets right behind the old town. With some clouds in the sky, you will capture those beautiful pink and blue pastel skies as the lights come on in the old town. The rocky beach offers lots of interesting foreground options. Slow that shutter down or get your filters out and smooth the water for that dreamy feel.
Lazareti is also a nice place to shoot from in the morning as soon as the sun makes its way over the mountains behind you. The old town looks great in the first rays of light but for me, the shot comes to life in the evening.
This location isn’t very well know about by photographers so it’s always very quiet.
Croatia, Dubrovnik, boats in the old town harbour at sunset
Just inside the Ploce Gate, you will go through a short tunnel before you reach an ornate bridge leading up to the city walls. It’s watched over by the Gothic tower of the Dominican Monastery. First thing in the morning the bridge is very quiet. So you can use the market sellers or even a nun if you’re lucky to add scale and perspective to the shot. On your right before the bridge is a set of stairs. You can go up to gain a little elevation for the shot which I find quite useful here.
This is only an option first thing as the light is soft. But it will need some filters or exposure blending. By 9 am it’s almost too busy to move.
This spot is often overlooked or missed as people are too keen to get into the old town. Or they miss its possibilities by passing through at the wrong time of day. So you won’t have much completion for a spot like some places.
Srd is ever looming and offers spectacular views over the whole of Dubrovnik. It is very accessible as they have a new cable car taking you to the top. The views from here are great. But if you start to walk back down the mountain along the road, you can capture some cracking views of the sunset. Try using the rugged mountain terrain to add some foreground interest. You can also use it to lead the viewer to views of the old town and islands in the background. Blue hour is also great to shoot as the lights come on throughout the city.
Srd is also a great spot in the mornings so don’t be afraid to head back up after your sunrise shoot.
The city walls are amazing at any time and would have to take the crown as one of Dubrovnik’s best photo locations. No matter where you look there is another photo opportunity. The classic view is from the Mincheta fort. The best shot is in the late afternoon before the city walls close. With the sun going down behind you the sun-soaked red tile roofs looking out over the mountains and the island of Lokrum don’t get much better.
The city walls don’t open until well after sunset and it is almost impossible to wangle your way up before sunrise. But we do have a few contacts that allow us to stay on the city walls for sunset and dusk. When the lights come on during blue hour it makes for some atmospheric images. Fancy capturing one of these shots? Come on one of our Croatia and Slovenia photo tours for a unique opportunity to capture a shot at these times.
Most people shoot Banya Beach from the road above. Instead, head down to the beach and climb along the rocks (it’s safe to do so) at the end of the beach. You’ll have some great white rock formations leading towards the Old Town. Get your Lee big stoppers out to blur that turquoise sea and make your image look incredible.
This location is great at sunrise or sunset and it’s not known widely about.
Not your iconic Dubrovnik image but they still have to make my list of Dubrovnik’s best photo locations. The rugged coastline and crystal clear water mean there are endless rock pools, inlets and jagged formations that all make for stunningly simple seascapes.
Located in the heart of the old town this early morning traditional food market gives a great insight into the living and working life of the locals. It’s located in a beautiful square and is full of interesting faces. It’s a great place to explore and see what your lens finds.
Lovrijenac fort is just outside the old town and offers a unique view of the old town. It’s best photographed in the afternoon. Position yourself with the sun to your back and the turquoise seas crashing against city walls. You will get a real perspective of what an impressive piece of engineering and design Dubrovnik is.
Take to the sky
Dubrovnik is made for Drones (we use the DJI Mavic 2 Pro). Whilst, not exactly a location I still think the sky deserves a place in Dubrovnik’s best photo locations. Fly right out to sea and capture the city and its walls from an angle only possible with a drone or plane. Don’t forget to head straight up to capture the unique patterns and textures of the old town. Pretty much any angle you photograph from the sky looks great so don’t forget to pack your drone.
Don’t forget the details.
Dubrovnik old town is full of some very unique and quirky details. From the ornate fountains and statues to the more subtle details of the fist bannister in the Rectors Palace to the Masceron at the entrance to the Franciscan monastery. Legend has it that if you manage to hop onto the head, keep your balance, and take off your shirt whilst still standing facing the wall, luck in love will follow you. The head stands some half a meter above the ground, sticking out only fifteen centimetres. Its top surface is polished like marble. The wall above it is noticeably greasy from the touch of a thousand hands.
So there you have it, our photography guide to Dubrovnik. Use this list to capture stunning photos and don’t forget to share them with us.
That Wild Idea runs photography tours to Croatia and Slovenia and the Balkans that include Dubrovnik in the itinerary. We also run workshops in Dubrovnik. Take a look at our full list of photography workshops and tours for more information.
Jordan Banks is a successful travel photographer with almost 20 years of experience shooting assignments and campaigns for some of the worlds leading brands and companies. Why not join him on his Croatian photography tours
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