Set off the southeast coast of Dubrovnik along the main Montenegro - bound road, Župa Dubrvačka, a string of several small picturesque settlements, is one of the most visited places outside the city of Dubrovnik, which boasts attractive beaches, spectacular mountainous terrain, lush vegetation and traditional stone houses. Župa is also known as the narrowest part of the Croatian coast being very close to the border with Bosnia&Herzegovina.
The first jewel we come across heading some 10 km south is Kupari, an under-the-radar oasis with an impressive beach, where the one can relax on the sand (not a typical beach for the Dubrovnik riviera!), take a dip in the turquoise waters of the Adriatic and enjoy a drink or two at the small charming bar. During the Yugoslav period Kupari was a big resort, which was later very much damaged during the Croatian War of Independance in 1991: even today the one can see a lot of lingering reminders of Dubrovnik's brutal war past: a big destroyed hotel is still waiting for its reconstruction which is believed to become one of the most significant investments in the region.
The next Župa settlement, dramatically nestled along the southern coastline is Srebreno, which is remarkable for its traditional cute stone facades, the ultra-modern Sheraton hotel and a sunny strolling promenade with many cafes. For those who enjoy shopping even on vacation there is a small shopping mall right on the main road. Srebreno offers breathtaking views over the entire broad Župa bay.
In about 1 kilometer Srebreno gradually fades into Mlini: definitely the most popular of all Župa settlements, a real haven located amidst aromatic pine trees – the perfect place to enjoy some shade in scorching summer heat. In the centre of Mlini you will find an original old mill („mlin“ in Croatian – that's where the name of the place comes from) as well as a massive plane tree which is several hundred years old. The sandy beach is located right beside it. From Mlini you can also get on a touristic boat which will take you directly to Dubrovnik or Cavtat. For those who enjoy hiking in low season: go above the main highway and visit the Malaštica mountain which is 628 m high and offers some great views of the region: the walking path stops right beside the border with Bosnia.
Mlini is full of surprises: if you follow a narrow walking path from hotel Astarea in Mlini down to the southern waterfront through lush Mediterranean vegetation, you will soon find an abandoned summer residence of the noble Bettera family – hidden away in an overgrown garden. A unique opportunity to observe the remains of Dubrovnik's golden age.