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If your Mediterranean fantasies feature warm days in sapphire waters & dreamy ancient walled towns, Croatia is the place for you



The Pearl of the Adriatic

Where to stay

Hands down the Lapad neighborhood! Lapad is a small town on the Babin Kuk peninsula of Dubrovnik. It's a 25-minute scenic bus ride to Stari Grad (Old Town) or an even more scenic 1 hour walk to the Pile Gate of Old Town.

Lapad's highlights include killer beaches, ample restaurants, coastal walking paths, and picturesque resorts.

Where to eat

Eden is a true hidden gem in Lapad. You'll have to walk up a steep flight of stairs to reach your destination, but it's all worth it in the end. Their seafood risotto & fish are next level! 

Lokanda Peskarija is a great spot in Stari Grad. With views of the port, waiters in striped nautical shirts serve up giant pots of mussels, squid, stews, and pasta. You can't go wrong!

Where to drink

Two words - Buza Bar. Resting on a perch of the City Walls cliffs, this bar offers great views of Lokrum island plus cliff jumping opportunities for the more brave of heart.

Croatia is a major wine producer in Europe. I highly encourage you to drink local selections at restaurants or buy a local bottle from a Tommy or Konzum supermarket. 


I'm in love with Croatia because of its warm & turquoise Adriatic waters. No real sand beaches exist in Dubrovnik, so be prepared to lay in between big rocks and on concrete platforms.

Lapad beach, Danče beach, Banje beach, Sulić beach, Hotel Ariston, and Hotel Dubrovnik Palace are my favorite swimming spots.

Things to Do

Walking the Old City Walls is an absolute must! I'd even splurge for an audio guide because of Dubrovnik's long & rich history. Head over in the morning or late-late afternoon to avoid crowds. 

Lokrum Island is the perfect half-day trip from Stari Grad. This lush nature preserve is equipped with a Benedictine Monastery, a lake, and even a bar! 

More Things to Do

The Museum of Modern Art Dubrovnik (best view of Stari Grad besides the view from the City Walls), Lovrijenac Fortress, Dubrovnik Aquarium, and City Wall kayaking are other fun activities for all energy levels.

Stanford BOSP Overseas Seminar 2015

Join me on memory lane as I reminisce about my first time studying abroad in college



2724 sunny hours each year

Where to stay

Hvar island has a few towns, but its most famous and most photographed town is Hvar! I volunteered at Hostel Villa Skansi

during my stay and would recommend the neighborhood behind the Franciscan Monastery. Most of the hostels are cute lil apartment rentals are in this area. 

You're 15 walking minutes away from the port & the city center. Small swimming spots are just 5 minutes downhill! 

Where to eat

Since I volunteered at a hostel during my time in Hvar, most of my meals came from the hostel chef. 

As always, I would recommend eating local dishes from non-touristy restaurants (aka nothing on the main drag). Prices will be more agreeable and you'll get that rustic family-owned charming atmosphere. Think seafood and wine! 

Where to drink

My hostel volunteer duties included leading a nightly pub crawl through the city center. Drink prices aren't cheap (you're on an island) but some venues have dreamy views that make the dollar signs disappear. 

Hula Hula - Beach club vibes with young beautiful people. An ideal spot for a summer sunset drink with fun beats.

Aloha Bar - Chill portside bar with tropical drinks. Good spot for pre-dinner drinks.


The best part of coastal Croatia is that you can swim practically anywhere! All across the island little concrete landings and smooth rocks make the perfect place to lay down a towel and spend a day in the sun. EXPLORE and find your secret spot!

Pokonji Dol - Is located 30ish walking minutes away from the port. A scenic coastal road leads you to the most spacious pebble beach of Hvar city. There's even a beachside restaurant to satisfy your cravings! 

Things to Do

Hvar Fortress - Overlooking the port of Hvar is a sprawling fortress with the best views in town. The Venetians began construction of the present fortress in 1278 and today the fortress displays many intricate ancient artifacts. BE PREPARED. The hike up the hill takes time, but luckily there are benches and drink vendors along the way.

Old Town - Just like every city along the Dalmation coast, Hvar's Old Town is a labyrinth of picturesque stone shops, cafes, and bars. Explore the dreamy alleyways at your leisure. 

More Things to Do

The Pakleni Islands - Located 30ish minutes away from the port is a portion of the Pakleni Islands. You can rent a small boat with a couple of friends and spend the day exploring the scenic island inlets. If renting a boat isn't your thing, water taxis visit designated locations throughout the island chain. Check the port for departure times and prices. 

Carpe Diem - This club may come up in your research. I personally never went because the entrance fee / drinks prices were out of my price range. Tripadvisor this one friends. 

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