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Can you visit Bosnia from Dubrovnik?
The Croatian town of Dubrovnik is one of those special places which can be used as a base for international day trips to places like Montenegro and Bosnia and Herzegovina. But unlike Montenegro, Bosnia wasn’t on my travel radar until I started planning my visit to Dubrovnik (in hindsight, I feel pretty silly that up until this point, I’d never even considered visiting this Balkan beauty). After a quick search of Mostar, I was hooked and had booked onto a Bosnia day trip from Dubrovnik. A Dubrovnik to Bosnia day trip is a must-do on any itinerary for Croatia although don’t be surprised if you find yourself wanting to plan a further trip to Bosnia after your short encounter!
Tip: Due to the busyness of the Old Town, one of the top tips for visiting Dubrovnik is to do your sightseeing later in the day – this gives you even more of a reason to take a day trip to Bosnia, because you won’t be back ’til the evening!
What is the best Dubrovnik to Bosnia day trip?
I spent hours researching my trip to Croatia, and a good chunk of that time was searching for the best Dubrovnik to Bosnia day trip. I opted to book onto a one day trip from Dubrovnik to Mostar and Kravice Waterfalls with Laus Travel. Laus Travel is a Dubrovnik-based tour company which is run by a team of passionate travellers. Initially, I was won over by them because of their outstanding TripAdvisor reviews, which is one of the trip planning tools I use all the time when organising my travels, and they did not disappoint. (note: the itinerary for this tour may have changed since my trip – check the website using the link above for up to date details.)
Note: This post has not been sponsored by Laus Travel. Because the day I spent with them is one of my most cherished memories from my travels through Croatia and their service was nothing less than exceptional (prompt, polite and professional), I want to use this space to tell you all about them.
Dubrovnik to Bosnia day trip with Laus Travel
Another day, another early start. It was 7:20am, and I was back at the same bus stop where I was standing the day before whilst waiting to be collected for my day trip to Montenegro. Blurry eyed, I was full of excitement for the day ahead. As with most day trips from Dubrovnik to Bosnia and Herzegovina, the first stop of the day was going to be Kravice Waterfalls, which is one of Europe’s natural wonders. From Dubrovnik, the total distance to Kravice Waterfalls is ~130km (approx. 2 hours and 15 minutes drive). In order to reach the cascade, a border crossing is required which may add some time to your journey, and you should stop en route for a quick refreshment break too.
How far is Dubrovnik from the Bosnian border? The Croatia/Bosnia border is around a 1 hour drive from Dubrovnik. You should take your passport and/or any other travel documentation which is required to enter the country, and check the entry requirements before you book your trip.
Fast-forward to mid-morning and we’ve reached Kravice Waterfalls. Kravice Falls has a stunning resemblance to Plitvice Lakes (but on a smaller scale) and comprises 20 falls that measure 25 metres high. Here, you should have around 90 minutes of free time (note: the tour with Laus Travel does not include the entry fee into Kravice Waterfalls). From the carpark, you’ll walk down to the base of the waterfall using one of the trails. There are viewing platforms along the way for photo opportunities and next to the plunge pool, a little shack-style cafe for refreshments.
Can you swim in Kravice Waterfalls? Yes, you can, but don’t expect it to be warm (read below for my frosty experience). Even in the summer, the water is said to be chilly. Be sure to pack your swimwear and a towel. And be mindful there are no lifeguards on duty.
Being October, it wasn’t the warmest morning on record but I wasn’t missing the opportunity to take a swim in the emerald waters. It was ice cold and the chill of the water literally took my breath away, so after a quick photo, I was back on dry land and wrapped in a warm towel. This super quick 5-minute dip was one of the highlights of my day trip to Bosnia – I might have been gasping for air, but they say you regret the things you don’t do more than the things you try, right? I spent the rest of my free time at Kravice Waterfalls drinking a cold Ozujsko (Croatian beer), completely mesmerised by the enchanting surroundings.
Next we headed to Mostar. On this part of the journey, you’ll likely see sobering remnants of the Bosnian War, as many of the buildings are still scarred with bullet holes from the conflict. Mostar is located ~43km (approx. 50 minute drive) from Kravice Waterfalls. After spending all of 10 minutes wandering through the cobbled streets, I had decided that Mostar would be somewhere I would return to in the future. You should have approximately 2 hours and 45 minutes of free time in Mostar, which is enough to get a good taste of the magical Old Town.
What is the best currency to use in Bosnia? The currency is the Bosnia-Herzegovina Convertible Mark (BAM). However, the Croatian Kuna (HRK) is usually widely accepted, especially in tourist areas, which is pretty handy if you’re doing a day trip from Dubrovnik!
But “is a day trip to Mostar worth it?” I hear you ask. Yes, in my humble opinion. Mostar is famous for Stari Most which arches high over the icy blue Neretva River. Divers position themselves along the top and will plunge into the waters below once they have collected enough money from the spectators who anxiously watch on, which is a sight to behold in itself. Mostar has an abundance of charming bars in its narrow lanes and riverside eateries selling local dishes like Cevapi. And the east meets west vibe which permeates the Old Town makes it an interesting place to wander for a while. What’s more, Mostar is noticeably cheaper than Dubrovnik, which offers some brief respite for the wallet!
Well into the mid-afternoon and time’s up in Mostar. Back on board the bus, all that’s left to do is to settle down and get comfy for the ~138km return journey and border crossing to Dubrovnik (approx. 2 hours and 20 minutes, perhaps more with the border crossing – you should have the chance to stop for a refreshment break). As long as the journey goes smoothly you can expect to be back in Dubrovnik by early evening – the perfect time for sightseeing due to the quieter streets!
This day trip merely skims the surface of what Bosnia and Herzegovina has to offer (which is why I plan to return). But, a Dubrovnik to Bosnia day trip is the perfect opportunity to get acquainted with a country which you otherwise may not, and for this reason I highly recommend you incorporate one into your trip to Croatia!
Is it better to visit Mostar from Split or Dubrovnik? After much deliberation, I opted to visit from Dubrovnik because the driving distance was a bit shorter. There are tour agencies who offer the same trip from Split though, if that works better for you.
Book your Kravice Waterfalls and Mostar day trip from Dubrovnik
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