Lokrum “Peacock” Island Day Trip from Dubrovnik Croatia

Lokrum Island Croatia

Lokrum (or Lacroma) Island is the closest island to Dubrovnik, Croatia. Beyond its proximity, there are several reasons to consider visiting during a trip to Dubrovnik. Lokrum is home to a large national preserve where local wildlife runs free. Well, if you consider hoards of bunnies and peacocks wildlife. Particularly after the many years and many visitors who have taken countless selfies with them while sharing a bit of bread or whatever else is on hand.

Lokrum Bunny

Our favorite floppy-eared friend – How could you turn down this guy?

We had actually read about this trend and stocked up with fresh carrots for the bunnies before boarding the ferry and taking the short 10 minute trip to the island.

Lokrum Island Croatia

Lokrum Island off the coast of Dubrovnik Croatia

Lokrum Island from the Dubrovnik Cable Car

Lokrum Island as seen from the top of the Dubrovnik cable car

Getting the Views from Fort Royal

There is a walking path that extends around the circumference and through the center of the island. In the center at the highest point of Lokrum sits Fort Royal or The Tower of Maximilian. The tower’s construction was begun by the French during their occupation of Dubrovnik in 1806. It is possible to make a short climb to the top and get the best views from the Island.

Dubrovnik's Old City Walls as Seen From Lokrum Island

Dubrovnik’s Old City Walls as seen from Lokrum Island

View from the Fort atop Lokrum Island

View from the Fort atop Lokrum Island

Swimming in the Dead Sea

Lokrum contains a small lake, formed after years of erosion. The shallow salty Dead sea, or “Mrtvo More” is a favorite swimming hole for visitors. Perhaps because of its calm crystal clear waters, or maybe because it lacks the nude bathers present on other sections of the Island’s shores. The nude beach is located on the south-eastern section, in case you want to get in a skinny dip during your visit.

Beautiful Coastline Around Lokrum Island

Beautiful Coastline Around Lokrum Island

Exotic Botanical Gardens

The island’s name come from the Latin word acrumen, which means “sour fruit.”  A little misleading, as it actually refers to the practice of growing exotic plants from all over, beginning at the time of the Benedictines. The tradition was continued by former island owner, Maximilan Ferdinand of Hapsburg. He built a magnificent mansion and equally impressive gardens on the island in 1859. Despite bombings during the Croatian/Serbian Civil War in the 1990’s the botanical gardens remained intact. The entire Island is now a nature preserve where overnight stays are not allowed.

Walking Path Around Lokrum Island

Walking Path Around Lokrum Island

The Curse of the Benedictine Monks

The first written mention of the island dates back to 1023 when Benedictine monks established an abbey and monastery on it. They were expelled in 1808 after the French took possession of the island. Legend has it, on their last night the monks marched around the island clutching upturned candles and leaving a trail a wax in their wake. All the while the monks chanted “Whosoever claims Lokrum for his own personal pleasure shall be damned!” There does seem to be some evidence of ill-fated demises of future owners, including suicide, murder, drowning, and impoverishment. Moral of the story: never cross a Benedictine Monk, which seems like good advice to follow in any situation. It is possible to visit the ruins of the monastery and old protective walls, which were heavily damaged in an earthquake in the 1600s.

Peacocks and Bunnies

Lokrum Island Bunny

Lokrum Island Bunny

Is there any occasion that isn’t elevated by the presence of peacocks and bunnies? None that I can imagine! The resident peacocks were originally brought over from the Canary Islands by Maximillian and now roam freely around the island. During our visit they seemed to be perturbed by their over-fed bunny neighbors and were often spotted chasing them off. Perhaps to have a better chance of getting the hunks of bread being offered by tourists without rabbit competition. Luckily for the bunnies we became acquainted with, the peacocks weren’t so into the carrots that we brought along.

Lokrum Island Peacock

Lokrum Island Peacock

Restaurants on Lokrum Island

Lokrum (or Lacroma) Island Restaurants

There are two restaurants on Lokrum Island. Lacroma Restaurant, and Rajski Vrt, which is close to the monastery. There is also a small snack bar near the boat landing. But don’t expect any bargains on Lokrum Island. Many people opt to bring a picnic lunch which is ultimately shared with the bunnies and peacocks. Who could resist?

Lokrum Island - great views but no bargain pricing

Lokrum Island – great views but no bargain pricing

Game of Thrones Filming Location

Just like many areas in Dubrovnik, Lokrum Island also claims bragging rights as a filming location for the popular series “The Game of Thrones.” Inside the monastery is a small museum memorializing this event. It has an interactive map showing all of the filming locations in Croatia and offers the opportunity to get a photo taken sitting on King Joffrey’s iron thrown. This is reason enough to make the 10 minute trip to Lokrum Island. Add in the peacocks, bunnies, gardens, the dead sea, the monastery and, why not, the nude beaches and there’s something for everyone.

Getting to Lokrum Island

Lokrum Island Pier

Lokrum Island Pier

There are tourist boats that provide a ride to the Island at Dubrovnik’s Old Port (Porporela). They leave every 1 1/2 hours in low season and up to every fifteen minutes in high season and cost about 40 Kuna (5 Euros) as of this writing. Be sure to ask the time of the last boat offered by the company that you choose, as over night stays are not allowed.

Additional articles about travel in Croatia that you might enjoy:

Wine in Split Croatia, A Story of a Family, Wine and A Grape

Croatian Food – Things To Eat and Drink in Croatia

Plitvice Lakes National Park Croatia

Take the Dubrovnik Cable Car or Hike Croatia’s Mnt Srd?

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Dubrovnik Lokrum Peacock Island

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