Close to Ploce Gate, the city beach of Banje is a great option for families. Stuffed with amenities, activities – and other families – this pebble and sand beach is perfectly located, boasting an impeccable view of the Old Town. It is crowded, though, and many find the swathes of sunbathers off-putting.
The stonier part of the beach is free to use, but if you want to sunbathe on the other side, you’ll need to pay up to use a deckchair. The EastWest Beach Club run things around here, and somewhat cynically, the price of your sunlounger doesn’t entitle you to use the bathrooms, which are charged separately.
Locals and in-the-know visitors steer towards Sveti Jakov, a picturesque walk along a pine-fringed boulevard, just 20 minutes from Banje. Located near Hotel Villa Dubrovnik, the gorgeous, panoramic view stretches right over the Old Town and Lokrum Island.
A blend of sand and shingle, Sveti Jakov is a bit more rugged than the city beach. There are fewer amenities here, but fortunately, fewer people too. Access to the beach is through a lengthy stairwell. Something to bear in mind: the clamber up is more difficult than the journey down once you’re suntanned and beach-tousled.
Despite its name, Dubrovnik’s Copacabana has little in common with Rio’s white sandy playas. Set in Babin Kuk, the site of the Valamar hotel complexes, one of Dubrovnik’s largest beaches is made up of pebbles and sand, with shallow waters – making it a safe bet for families. There’s a small inflatable water park for kids and an all-day bar for adults, too.
Beaches don’t come hipper than Coral Beach, a luxuriant hang-out with perfectly sculpted sand-banks and well-preened palm trees. The beach is dotted with white lounge chairs, and pricey cocktails are de rigueur, while Scandinavian techno faintly patters in the background.
The Lapad peninsula is a sizeable stretch of coastline between Hotel Splendid and Hotel Kompas – a great chunk is privately owned by the hotels. However, Dubrovnik is known for its rocky coves and there’s plenty of unclaimed stone inlets along this coastal walk.