15 BEST Museums in Dubrovnik [May 2019]

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15 BEST Museums in Dubrovnik [May 2019]

The Mediterranean town of Dubrovnik may be world renown for its stone walls and medieval architecture. However, Dubrovnik is also home to a variety of museums that shine a light into the history and culture of this ancient city.

With a picture perfect setting on the Adriatic coast, Dubrovnik is one of the most charming and stunning cities to visit in Europe. It’s easy to see why the entire old town is a preserved and dedicated UNESCO World Heritage Site!

Whether you’re interested in learning more about the rich war-torn history of Croatia or simply wanting to admire the local works of artisans and painters, you’ll find a museum worth visiting in Dubrovnik!

#1 – Love Stories Museum

Specialty Museum

Love stories museum

Photo credit – Lonely Planet

  • Dedicated to love and romance
  • Personal and sentimental items from couples
  • Cost: 50 kuna (adults), 35 kuna (children)
  • Suggested duration: 1 hour

What’s not to love about love? At the Love Stories Museum, you’ll find hundreds of items donated by young couples, star-crossed lovers, and happy newlyweds from around the world.

Just like a relationship, each item has an emotional story behind it that brings it to life. Whether it’s a little memento, a heartwarming anniversary gift, or even just a handwritten letter, the Love Stories Museum is bursting with love. You can even donate your own personal items to be showcased!

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#2 – The Rupe Museum

History Museum

The Rupe Museum

Photo credit – Tzdubrovnik

  • Traditional Croatian folk artifacts
  • Built in a historic granary building
  • Cost: 100 kuna (adults), 50 kuna (children)
  • Suggested duration: 1-2 hours

The Rupe Museum pays homage to the lifestyle and ethnographic heritage of the Dubrovnik and Croatian people. Located in a 16th-century granary, the Rupe Museum now houses over 6,000 artifacts including 19th-century traditional clothing, handcrafted textiles, and even historic paintings. You can also learn more about the impact and history of the granary and how grain was originally stored before it was turned into a museum.

#3 – Cultural History Museum

History Museum

Cultural History Museum

Photo credit – Wikimedia

  • A wide variety of historical and cultural items
  • Located in the grand Rector’s Palace
  • Cost: 100 kuna (adults), 50 kuna (children)
  • Suggested duration: 2 hours

If you’re visiting Dubrovnik and want to learn more about Croatia’s history, stop by the Cultural History Museum. With over 10,00 items dating all the way back to the 15th century, the museum is the perfect place to dive into the country’s rich history. The objects in museum range from paintings and photographs to furniture and weaponry.

You’ll also find a special exhibition about the history of goldsmithing and a rare collection of Dubrovnik coins and medals. The Culture History Museum has something for every type of history buff!

Visit the Cultural History Museum on your private tour of Dubrovnik!

#4 – War Photo Limited

Photography and History Museum

War Photo Limited

Photo credit – Time Out

  • Dedicated to the Yugoslav Wars
  • Hundreds of photographs from different journalists
  • Cost: 100 kuna
  • Suggested duration: 1-2 hours

For a memorable and eye-opening experience, head to Dubrovnik’s War Photo Limited. This museum explores the history of war through the art of photojournalism. Although it’s mostly focused on the Yugoslav Wars of the 1990s, there are still photos from other international conflicts.

You’ll find multiple exhibits showcasing the gritty, raw truth that can only be shown through first-hand photographs by the artists who shot them. War Photo Limited may be harrowing, but it’s a dedicated remembrance of the past.

#5 – Museum of Modern Art

Art Museum

Museum of Modern Art

Photo credit – TripAdvisor

  • An indoor and outdoor museum
  • Dozens of South European contemporary artists
  • Cost: 130 kuna (adults), 50 kuna (children)
  • Suggested duration: 1-2 hours

Covering over 2,000 square meters of indoor and outdoor space, Dubrovnik’s Museum of Modern Art is a wondrous place to admire the contemporary works of Croatian art. With over 3,000 paintings, photographs, installations, and sculptures, the Museum of Modern Art showcase some of the most popular artists from around Southern Europe.

Don’t forget to visit the stunning sculpture garden located on the outdoor terrace. Besides sculptures, you’ll also have a magnificent view over the entire city.

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#6 – Memorial Room of the Defenders of Dubrovnik

History Museum

Memorial Room of the Defenders of Dubrovnik

Photo credit – TripAdvisor

  • Remembering the lost lives during the Yugoslav War
  • Located in Sponza Palace
  • Cost: Free
  • Suggested duration: 30 minutes – 1 hour

The Croatian War of Independence has greatly impacted the history and future of the country, but not without sacrifice. At the Memorial Room of the Defenders of Dubrovnik, you’ll learn about the brave soldiers and civilians who risked their lives to protect not only their city but their country.

Every Croatian who died during the war is represented by a picture and description of their life and their death. Although it’s a small exhibit, the Memorial Room of the Defenders of Dubrovnik is a beautiful remembrance.

 

Check out our guide to Dubrovnik’s most interesting facts!

#7 – Maritime Museum

Art Museum

Maritime Museum Croatia

Photo credit – Absolute Croatia

  • Fantastic scaled models of ships
  • Preserved artifacts and items from shipwrecks
  • Cost: 130 kuna (adults), 50 kuna (children)
  • Suggested duration: 1-2 hours

Boat lovers, sea captains, and aspiring sailors cannot miss a visit to the Dubrovnik Maritime Museum. Founded in 1949, the Maritime Museum houses studies, exhibits, photographs, small size models from Croatian ships. There are also over 15 collections of objects ranging from building equipment, ship decoration, and even rediscovered artifacts from historic shipwrecks.

If you’re looking to explore the deep sea depths of Croatia’s seafaring history, then look no further than the Maritime Museum!

Check out the Maritime Museum with a Walking Dubrovnik City Walls Tour

#8 – Dubrovnik Natural History Museum

Art Museum

Dubrovnik Natural History Museum

Photo credit – TripAdvisor

  • Unique species of animals
  • Also houses a Freddie Mercury exhibit
  • Cost: 80 kuna
  • Suggested duration: 1 hour

The Dubrovnik Natural History Museum is one of the oldest and most quirky museums in the entire city! The collection was started in the mid-1800s when world renown naturalist Baldo Kosić donated over 1,000 individual specimens to the museum.

It’s now grown to contain some of the most unique species in all of Croatia. Step foot inside the Dubrovnik Natural History Museum and marvel at the native flora and wild fauna that can only be found in this region of the world. Don’t miss the exhibit on extinct species!

#9 – Franciscan Monastery & Museum

Art Museum

Franciscan Monastery & Museum

Photo credit – TripAdvisor

  • Romanesque and Renaissance structure
  • Ancient apothecary and library on-site
  • Cost: 30 kuna (adults), 15 kuna (children)
  • Suggested duration: 2 hours

No trip to Dubrovnik would be complete without visiting the Franciscan Monastery & Museum! Dating back to the early 1300s, the monastery now houses one of the oldest pharmacies in the world, and the museum contains ancient apothecary equipment and bottles used hundreds of years in the past.

Besides the pharmacy, the monastery also has the largest library in all of Croatia! Spend your afternoon browsing thousands of leather-bound books that you can only find at the Franciscan Monastery & Museum. Also, you should check out our article about some of the coolest day trips from Dubrovnik!.

Find out more about the Franciscan Monastery & Museum with a self-guided audio tour!

#10 – Homeland War Museum

History Museum

Homeland War Museum

Photo credit – Absolute Croatia

  • Over 500 wartime artifacts
  • Incredible view and scenery from the museum
  • Cost: 30 kuna
  • Suggested duration: 1-2 hours

If you’re looking to dive deeper into Croatia’s war-torn past from 1991-1995, then look no further than the Homeland War Museum. Main exhibits include the fall of the Dubrovnik Republic and the liberation of the Croatian War for Independence. Besides traditional documents, photographs, and art, you’ll also find real-life weapons, explosive devices, and military mines that are on display.

The museum is located atop Mount Srd at Fort Imperial, which is famously known for being one of the battlegrounds during the Croatian War of Independence.

Take a cable car to the top of Mount Srd and stop by the Homeland War Museum on the way!

#11 – Museum of Serbian Orthodox Church

Religious Museum

Museum of Serbian Orthodox Church

Photo credit – TripAdvisor

  • Items from the 15th to 19th centuries
  • Located in the beautiful Church of the Holy Annunciation
  • Cost: Free
  • Suggested duration: 30 minutes – 1 hour

Located inside the Church of the Holy Annunciation, the Museum of Serbian Orthodox Church houses a vast collection of religious objects and portraits. Most notably, you’ll find a copy of the Miroslav Gospels that date back to the late 1800s as well as Russian reprints of gospels.

Portraits of famous Croatian writers, artists, and politicians are hung throughout the museum, along with bust statues of poets and linguists. Step next door to the Library of Serbian Orthodox Church to discover over 12,000 books including a 1703 printed version of the New Testament.

#12 – The Gornji Ugao Tower

Religious Museum

The Gornji Ugao Tower

Photo credit – TripAdvisor

  • Items from the 15th to 19th centuries
  • Located in the beautiful Church of the Holy Annunciation
  • Cost: 30 kuna
  • Suggested duration: 30 minutes – 1 hour

For a rare glimpse inside the walled city of Dubrovnik, stop by the underground museum of the Gornji Ugao Tower. This excavated site was once a medieval foundry from the 15th century, and a rare industrial site right in the middle of the city.

Situated below the surface of Fort Minčeta, you’ll discover ruins from a forge, sedimentation channel, and even moldings for bronze and bells! Besides, the Gornji Ugao Tower is also the perfect place to cool off from the hot Croatian sun on a warm summer day.

Check this out! Our complete guide to the things to do in Split, Croatia.

#13 – Lokrum Visitor Center

History Museum

Lokrum Visitor Center

Photo credit – TripAdvisor

  • Replica Iron Throne from Game of Thrones
  • A stunning, picturesque island off the coast
  • Cost: Free
  • Suggested duration: 30 minutes – 1 hour

A short ferry ride from Dubrovnik’s Old Town drops you off on the charming island of Lokrum. At the Lokrum Visitor Center, you can learn more about the history of the island and the impact it has on Croatian culture. Besides a small history exhibit, you can also experience animated multimedia installations that bring the museum to life! Of course, the museum is also popular with Game of Thrones fans.

At the end of the museum, you’ll find a replica Iron Throne where you can channel your inner King or Queen and snap a few photos!

#14 – Sebastian Art Gallery

Art Museum

Sebastian Art Gallery

Photo credit – TripAdvisor

  • Traditional Croatian art methods
  • Purchase works in the on-site Art Shop
  • Cost: Free
  • Suggested duration: 30 minutes – 1 hour

If you’re looking for a unique souvenir to take back home, then make your way over to the Sebastian Art Gallery! Not only can you purchase the one-of-a-kind items and art pieces on display, but you can also browse the wide selection of Croatian naïve paintings and sculptures.

The Sebastian Art Gallery is located inside a 15th-century Dominican monastery and showcases collections, jewelry, ceramics, and other artworks from local Croatian artists and designers.

 

Traveling to Dubrovnik? These are the best tours in Dubrovnik, Croatia!

#15 – Photo Gallery Carmel

Art Museum

Photo Gallery Carmel

Photo credit – TripAdvisor

  • Off the beaten path gallery
  • Themed exhibitions in the summer
  • Cost: Free
  • Suggested duration: 30 minutes – 1 hour

Photography lovers will love visiting the Photo Gallery Carmel in Dubrovnik! This hidden gem has hundreds of photographs from local as well as international artists from around the world. Although the gallery is small, you can still admire some of the best prints from well-known photographers in a beautiful, quaint setting.

Besides the museum, you can also purchase prints and art pieces to take back home. As an extra treat, the gallery also sells handicrafts and jewelry made by local Dubrovnik artists.

FAQs

How many museums are in Dubrovnik?

Although you’ll find plenty of fortresses, churches, and historical sites within the city walls, Dubrovnik’s museums are more off the beaten path. There are just under two dozen museums in the city, and only a handful of them are officially part of the Dubrovnik Museums Collection. Most other galleries and exhibits are small and privately owned.

How many free museums are in Dubrovnik?

Most museums and historical sites charge a small fee anywhere from 30 – 150 kuna to enter. However, entry to religious museums and sites are free of charge. Independently owned art galleries are also usually free of charge since they also function as an art shop.

What are the hours of the museums in Dubrovnik?

In Dubrovnik, most museums are open daily from 9 am until 6 pm. During the summer, you can find that some museums have extended hours. Most museums are open on Saturday and Sunday but may be closed during the week on either on Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday. Check the website for the museum you wish to visit for exact opening and closing times.

What can I bring in Dubrovnik Museums?

Most museums in Dubrovnik allows you to take in bottled liquids and water. Keep in mind that pets and animals are not allowed inside museums due to Dubrovnik city regulations. Also, remember that dress codes are strictly enforced at religious museums and sites. Visitors must not wear shorts or sleeveless tops.

Final Thoughts

Dubrovnik museums are some of the most eclectic in all of Europe. The historic war and maritime museums provide insights into the country’s destructive yet powerful rise to become an independent state. And the charming art museums and galleries show how Dubrovnik has grown to be a culturally diverse and thriving civilization.

Museums in Dubrovnik may not be as massive and famous as other museums in Europe. On the other hand, the blood, sweat, and tears poured into them by the city is full of spirit and dedication. The passion to keep the history and culture alive is prominent. Through the local museums, you can get a true feeling of Croatian and Dubrovnik life.

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About the Author Emma Johnson

Emma Johnson lives to travel! Born in Washington D.C., Emma is a hotel connoisseur and a staff writer at Hotel Jules. An army brat, Emma got the travel bug early and has never been able to stop. Now, she has proudly visited 70+ countries and plans to visit every country in the world! Passionate about her ukelele (obviously) and her family, Emma eventually wants to retire in Thailand and write a book about all of her travel experiences.