Dubrovnik Boat Tours: Private vs. Group - Which is Right for You?

17-Feb-24 | Insights, Tour

When you think of Dubrovnik, the first image that often comes to mind is the mesmerising Old Town, with its historic city walls and terracotta rooftops. However, Dubrovnik has much more to offer beyond its city limits. One of the most popular ways to explore the beauty of this Croatian gem is by taking a boat tour. But should you opt for a private boat tour or join a group tour? That's the question we'll help you answer in this beginner's guide to Dubrovnik boat tours.


Dubrovnik's coastline is adorned with pristine islands, hidden coves, and sparkling blue waters, making it a paradise for boat enthusiasts. Whether you're a solo traveller, a couple on a romantic getaway, or a family looking for adventure, there's a boat tour for you. Here, we'll break down the key differences between private and group boat tours to help you choose the one that best suits your preferences and budget.

Private Boat Tours: A Personalised Experience

Advantage 1: Customization

Private boat tours are all about tailored experiences. When you choose a private tour, you have the flexibility to customise your itinerary. Want to spend more time snorkelling in the crystal-clear waters of the Blue Cave? Or perhaps you'd like to enjoy a leisurely swim on a secluded beach? With a private boat tour, the choice is yours.

Advantage 2: Exclusivity

Privacy and exclusivity are other major perks of private boat tours. You'll have the boat all to yourself or your group, creating an intimate atmosphere for special occasions or quality time with loved ones. Imagine sipping champagne on the deck as you sail along the breathtaking Adriatic coastline.

Group Boat Tours: Sharing the Adventure

Advantage 1: Cost Savings

Group boat tours in Dubrovnik are often more budget-friendly. By sharing the boat with other travellers, you can split the cost of the tour, making it a cost-effective option. This leaves you with more money to indulge in other activities or savour the local cuisine.

Advantage 2: Social Interaction

If you're a social butterfly, group boat tours provide an excellent opportunity to meet fellow travellers from around the world. You can swap travel stories, make new friends, and even plan future adventures together. It's a great way to connect with like-minded individuals who share your love for exploration.

Comparing Costs: Private vs. Group Boat Tours

Let's dive a bit deeper into the cost aspect, as it's often a deciding factor for many travellers.

  • Private Boat Tours: These are generally more expensive than group tours due to the exclusivity and personalised service. The cost can vary widely depending on factors such as the type of boat, the duration of the tour, and the number of people in your group.
  • Group Boat Tours: Group tours are typically more budget-friendly. Prices are usually fixed and can range from moderate to affordable. Keep in mind that some group tours may offer optional add-ons or upgrades for an extra fee.

Choosing the Right Itinerary

Your choice between a private or group boat tour can significantly impact the itinerary you can explore. Here's how:

  • Private Boat Tours: With a private tour, you have the freedom to create a completely bespoke itinerary. You can work with the tour operator to design a route that includes all the places you've been dreaming of visiting, whether it's the famous Blue Cave, the enchanting Elaphiti Islands, or the serene shores of Sipan.
  • Group Boat Tours: Group tours usually follow a set itinerary, with specific destinations and activities planned in advance. While this can be convenient and less stressful, it may not cover all the places on your Dubrovnik bucket list.

Privacy and Comfort

  • Private Boat Tours: Privacy is one of the standout features of private boat tours. You won't have to share the boat with strangers, ensuring an intimate experience. Many private boats come equipped with luxurious amenities, such as sunbeds, a private chef, and even water toys like jet skis for added fun.
  • Group Boat Tours: While you may not have the same level of privacy on a group tour, you'll still enjoy a comfortable experience. Group boat tours are designed with passenger comfort in mind, often featuring shaded areas, seating, and onboard facilities.

Meeting Fellow Travelers

Private Boat Tours: As you're sailing on your exclusive vessel, meeting other travellers is less likely. However, if you're the sociable type, you can always strike up conversations with fellow boaters at popular stops along the way.

  • Group Boat Tours: Group tours are a fantastic way to connect with people from diverse backgrounds who share your love for adventure. You'll have plenty of opportunities to mingle and make new friends during the tour.

Booking and Availability

When planning your Dubrovnik boat tour, booking and availability are essential considerations.

  • Private Boat Tours: Booking a private boat tour often requires more advanced planning, especially during the peak tourist season. It's advisable to book well in advance to secure your preferred date and vessel.
  • Group Boat Tours: Group tours are generally easier to book on short notice, and you'll find a wider range of availability, even during busy periods. However, it's still a good idea to make a reservation ahead of time to avoid disappointment.

Safety and Regulations

Whether you choose a private or group boat tour, safety should always be a top priority.

  • Private Boat Tours: When booking a private tour, ensure that the boat operator adheres to all safety regulations. Ask about the qualifications of the crew, the condition of the boat, and the availability of safety equipment.
  • Group Boat Tours: Group tours are typically well-regulated, with tour operators ensuring that all safety measures are in place. Nevertheless, it's wise to familiarise yourself with safety procedures and the location of life-saving equipment on board.

Which Tour Is Right for You?

Choosing between a private and group boat tour in Dubrovnik ultimately comes down to your preferences and priorities:

Choose a Private Boat Tour If:

  • You value exclusivity and customization.
  • Privacy is essential for your group.
  • You have a specific itinerary in mind that you'd like to follow.

Choose a Group Boat Tour If:

  • Budget-friendly options are a priority.
  • You enjoy socialising with other travellers.
  • You're comfortable with a pre-planned itinerary.

Tips for Enhancing Your Boat Tour Experience

No matter which type of boat tour you select, here are some tips to ensure you have an unforgettable experience in Dubrovnik:

  • Bring sunscreen and hats: The Mediterranean sun can be intense, so come prepared with sunscreen and hats to stay protected.
  • Wear comfortable clothing and swimwear: Dress in comfortable, lightweight clothing, and don't forget your swimwear for impromptu swims.
  • Pack essentials: Bring essentials like sunglasses, a camera, a reusable water bottle, and any necessary medications.
  • Respect the environment: Follow eco-friendly practices by not littering and respecting marine life during snorkelling or diving.
  • Stay hydrated: Drink plenty of water to stay hydrated, especially on hot summer days.
  • Follow safety instructions: Pay attention to the crew's safety instructions and guidelines to ensure a secure journey.
  • Be punctual: Arrive on time for your tour to avoid delays and ensure you have ample time to enjoy each stop.


Dubrovnik boat tours offer a fantastic opportunity to explore the stunning Adriatic coastline and its captivating islands. Whether you choose a private boat tour for a personalised adventure or a group boat tour to share the experience with fellow travellers, Dubrovnik's beauty awaits you.

Now that you're equipped with insights into the differences between private and group boat tours, you can make an informed decision based on your preferences, budget, and the type of experience you seek. So, what are you waiting for? Embark on your Dubrovnik adventure, and let the azure waters and picturesque islands mesmerise you.

If you're ready to book your boat tour in Dubrovnik, consider reaching out to Garitransfer, a local tour agency with diverse options of boats and yachts for both private and group tours. They specialise in exploring Dubrovnik's islands, including Hvar, Mljet, Elaphiti, Sipan, Korcula, and more. With their expertise, you're sure to have an unforgettable experience in the Adriatic waters.

So, whether you're planning to rent a boat in Dubrovnik, go for a yacht charter, or even enjoy some jet ski adventures, Dubrovnik offers a world of possibilities for your next vacation

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