How to Travel From Belgrade to Dubrovnik in 2024: Detailed Guide

Looking for the best way to travel between Serbia’s capital and the coastal city of Dubrovnik? This guide breaks down various transport options to suit every budget, detailing the best ways to journey from Belgrade to Dubrovnik (and vice versa) in 2024.

Though I haven’t lived in Dubrovnik, I’ve visited multiple times, thanks to my aunt who lived there. I’ve made the trip between Belgrade and Dubrovnik in just about every way possible – bus, car, flight, and train.

When planning your trip, consider a few factors: the reliability of the routes, your budget, and how much time you have. Each option has a different balance of cost, comfort, and speed.

If you’re not in a hurry, I’d suggest setting aside a whole day for this trip. There’s a lot to see along the way. You could stop at Zlatibor for a bit of nature, or visit Herceg Novi and see the most beautiful bay on the Adriatic coast, the Bay of Kotor,

If you are in a rush, you can reach Dubrovnik from Belgrade in just over an hour by plane. Flying is the quickest and safest method, though flights aren’t available all year round. More details on that are below.

Belgrade to Dubrovnik: The Basics

The distance between Belgrade and Dubrovnik is approximately 508 kilometers or 316 miles.

The travel time to Dubrovnik from Belgrade typically ranges from 7-9 hours by road, varying with traffic, road conditions, and the mode of transportation.

In a private car, you can expect to make the journey in around 8 hours, give or take, without any stops. If opting for a bus, the travel time might extend to about 15 hours due to longer wait times at borders and scheduled stops along the way.

Flying is the fastest way, taking just over an hour, but flights aren’t always available throughout the year.

The journey by train isn’t a direct option, so if you’re looking for rail travel, you’ll need to consider a combination of train and bus or car to complete the trip.

Option 1: Private Transfer with BlaBlaCar

For a quick and straightforward journey to Dubrovnik, consider booking a private transfer with BlaBlaCar. It’s an Uber-like long-distance carpooling, pairing you up with a driver who’s going the same way. The prices are reasonable and fixed in advance, so no haggling is needed. 

You can tailor your trip with stops and detours as you like. The drivers are checked for safety, the cars are clean, and essentials like seat belts and child seats are given.

BlaBlaCar operates with private drivers, so prices might vary. For a direct ride from Belgrade to Dubrovnik, expect to pay between 35-50 euros per person. The road journey takes around 7 hours if you don’t stop.

Where to Stop Between Belgrade and Dubrovnik

If you’re not in a rush, consider making a few stops along the way. Some recommended detours might include:

  • Zlatibor
  • Mokra Gora
  • Visegrad

The beauty of BlaBlaCar is the flexibility and the door-to-door service. Once you hit Dubrovnik, just give the driver your hotel address, and they’ll get you right to your doorstep. 

Option 2: Beograd Dubrovnik Van Transfer

This is not the cheapest option but it’s more reliable than options like BlaBlaCar and faster than the regular bus. They have daily departures. For a one-way trip, you’re looking at about 70€, with a round trip costing 130€.

You’ll be traveling in style with modern vehicles, complete with air conditioning and free WiFi. Just like with BlaBlaCar it’s door-to-door service. They’ll pick you up and drop you off right where you need to be.

Companies I recommend are LuxLINE, EuroLux LINES, Gea Tours, and Commodus Travel.

You can book your ride online by filling out a form with your details or simply giving them a call. 

Option 3: Beograd Dubrovnik Bus

The bus fare from Belgrade to Dubrovnik is 50€ for a round trip, but brace yourself—it’s going to be a long haul, easily over 15 hours one way, especially with unpredictable delays at the border. 

While it might be more reliable than a private car transfer and cheaper than a van, I wouldn’t recommend the bus for such a lengthy journey. I’ve done it countless times in my younger days, but nowadays, it would take a lot to get me on a bus for that long.

Another reason I don’t recommend the bus is that the regular service often gets canceled due to a lack of passengers. No wonder, considering what the journey is like.

I just checked for writing this article: Booking websites were offering tickets to Bosnia and Herzegovina, to places like Trebinje or Mostar.

I’d have to travel all night, then switch buses with hours of waiting at the station to continue towards Dubrovnik. That’s over 17 hours in total for a journey that takes half the time by car.

Option 4: Beograd Dubrovnik Plane

In the winter, there’s no direct flight from Belgrade to Dubrovnik, so the next best thing is flying to Tivat and then taking a bus or taxi to Dubrovnik.

There’s a regular bus route from Tivat to Dubrovnik running daily, with fares ranging between 30-40€, depending on the carrier.

During the summer, there’s a direct flight option. Planes fly every Monday and Wednesday from June 20th to September 30th.

A one-way ticket from Belgrade to Dubrovnik will cost you about 85€, and that includes all the airport taxes. It’s a direct flight, so no extra hassle or hidden costs.

Option 5: Driving to Dubrovnik

If you’re up for a road trip, driving from Belgrade to Dubrovnik can offer quite the adventure. While there’s a highway only as far as Čačak, beyond that, you’ll be on regular roads.

There’s an option to stick to highways all the way, but it’s a much longer route, taking you over Zagreb and Split, totaling over 1000 km, to be precise, 1030 km.

Driving allows you the freedom to explore, with plenty of spots to stop for food, rest, and sightseeing. If you allocate a full day (or more) for the trip, you can even fit in some detours along the way.

This option is good only if you’re confident driving long distances and are familiar with the local driving conditions.

Option 6: Train

While there’s no direct train line from Belgrade to Dubrovnik, there are options with transfers to a taxi or bus in Podgorica or Bar. The route, stretching over 450 kilometers to the Adriatic coast, takes more than 12 hours. 

The cheapest ticket is around 20 euros. The train runs overnight, so you can sleep on your journey.

It has a dining car, and there’s also an auto-train service where you can load your car onto the train — something I did the last time I traveled this way. 

One of the great things about the train is the unique views it offers, passing through areas inaccessible by car, like crossing an old bridge over a small river, once the highest railway bridge in the world.

The downside? The train cars are relics from the Yugoslav era, quite worn out. 

At least that was the case the last time I rode, and I haven’t heard of any upgrades since then.

The best way to travel from Belgrade to Dubrovnik is…

The journey from Belgrade to Dubrovnik can be quite the trek. Without careful planning, it could easily consume a whole day or more.

Given the distance and considering the seasonal changes, I recommend opting for a van transfer during the winter months for a balance of comfort, reliability, and cost. In the summer, when flights are available, taking a plane is your fastest and most convenient option.

This trip is probably one of the longer ones you’ll do around these parts, so think about what matters most to you. Speed? Comfort? Cost? Pick your priority and plan accordingly.