about Dubrovnik

Meet Dubrovnik locals - Nikolina and Hrvoje Šimunović

Tell us a bit about yourself: where you were born, where do you live, what do you do?

Hi guys! Our names are Nikolina and Hrvoje. We are brother and sister, both born and raised in Dubrovnik and there is no other place in the world where we would rather live than here.

Nikolina: I am a simple person who appreciates the little things in life and who loves my family and friends. I believe that a deeper connection of travelers with locals and culture and with the essence and nature of the destination is the key to experience the true meaning of travel. That’s why my brother Hrvoje and I founded Funky Wheels Dubrovnik. Our goal is to help our guests experience Dubrovnik from completely different perspectives driving in vintage Yugoslav Zastava cars together with a relaxed and spontaneous atmosphere. Join us and let your cheeksturn into a smile.

Hrvoje: I am a father and being a dad is mypriority. I am a great sport lover, and have been working in the sports industry for the last 8 years. I am also a big old-timer enthusiast, especially of the cult Zastava cars. These cars have marked the lives of generations of the Croatian people. My earliest childhood memories are related to these cars. They were treated as family members and if you ask any local, you will get the most interesting stories.

Why do you choose to stay in Dubrovnik? Would you like to stay here in the future, or you would like to move one day?

Nikolina: I am a travel lover and there is no better way to invest in yourself than visiting other countries and meeting different cultures. Unfortunately I am not able to travel as often as I’d like, so it seemed like a good idea to begin our Funky Wheels adventure. The best way to meet and experience other countries and cultures is through people. Making connections with our guests from all around the world, we have the unique privilege to experience different cultures, value new things and different ways of life and meet the world in a beautiful way of diversity. I am a true admirer of this city, and I cannot imagine my future outside of Dubrovnik.

Hrvoje: Dubrovnik is my forever favorite! I am a father of two, daughter and son, and Dubrovnik is the most beautiful and safest place for children to grow up in. Dubrovnik is a small town full of charm, and it is a world city at the same time. Everything here is authentic – the tradition, the culture and the history!

What’s your spirit animal?

Nikolina: No doubt my spirit animal is a dog! My dog Pepina has been my best friend for the last 13 years. She taught me the true meaning of unconditional love, friendship, loyalty and support and these are the most essential values I appreciate in life. The dog is a great teacher for those who wish to learn. I will always be grateful to Pepina for making me the person I am today.

Hrvoje: Honestly, I had never thought about my spirit animal before, so I did a little research on this topic. As my favorite animal is a donkey “the symbol of Dalmatian coast”, I started my research from there and I found an interesting description: “The donkey is a symbol of determination and a strong will. They are very dedicated and seem to not tire easily. It’s true that scientifically they are very strong and durable, but they still grow tired. The only reason they could go on for extended durations is that they will themselves do so”. - This illustrates a very important life lesson. Thanks to you I have found my spirit animal.

Can you recommend to our readers, what is the best “hidden gem” in Dubrovnik?

Nikolina: Park Orsula is my favorite. I am in love with this place. I also love natural beauties such as National Park Mljet and Lokrum Island. If you are a wine lover then there are excellent wines and impressive vineyards on Pelješac peninsula. There are so many “hidden gems” in Dubrovnik and its surrounding areas, so you shouldn’t stop exploring.

Hrvoje: I love the Elaphiti islands, not just because of the beautiful untouched nature andcrystal-clear sea. I love the atmosphere on the islands and local people who behave as they know you for the whole life, even though they see you for the first time. As soon as you get there, you feel like you are living in another time. In addition, I warmly recommend you to visit family farms and smokehouses in the Dubrovačko primorje region and Župa dubrovačka region. The most delicious traditional meals are served at local smokehouses.

And some best places to go out in Dubrovnik?

Nikolina: I am sorry to disappoint party lovers, but if you are planning to have a crazy night out till the early morning hours than there are just a few places in Dubrovnik to go out. My recommendation would be Revelin club.

If you would like to experience Dubrovnik night life as a local then there are many bars in Dubrovnik where you can enjoy in having drinks and meeting new people till 2 am. Here are my recommendations: Love bar, Beer factory, Fontana pub, Celtic bar Belfast, Exit …

While in Dubrovnik pay attention to events that usually take place outdoors at different locations.

Hrvoje: If you prefer clubbing, then Revelin club and Lazareti club are the best places to go. Regarding the bars, my suggestions would be Celtic bar Belfast and pubs in the Old town of Dubrovnik.

If you are looking for unique bars than you must visit Beach bar Buza, Beach bar Dodo and Cave bar More.

Where would you recommend chasing the best sunset?

Nikolina: I would definitely recommend Park Orsula again. There is something magical in this place... Something inexplicable....
Hrvoje: The best sunsets I had in Dubrovnik were in Lapad Bay area overlooking on rocky reefs and Elafiti islands.

Do you have favorite beach?

Nikolina: My favorite beach is Sikirica. It is located outside of Dubrovnik. It is about 20 minutes’ drive away from the city. It is a hidden beach and not easily approachable, but it is worth the effort to get there. A special experience is the view of the sunset behind the island.

Hrvoje: My favorite beach in town is Titova villa because it is a public beach where locals usually go and there are no sunbeds spread over the beach. Very friendly and relaxed environment.

In your opinion, which part of the town/neighborhood in Dubrovnik is worth of visit except the Old Town?

Nikolina: The eastern part of Dubrovnik wheresv. Jakov beach is located is definitely worth the visit. It takes a bit of a walk from Dubrovnik Old town to reach sv. Jakov beach and itsneighborhood, butyou’ll be impressed with spectacular views of the island of Lokrum andthe Old townof Dubrovnik inthe distance.

Hrvoje: I have beenlivinginLapadareafor thewholemylifeand there are so many attractive things todoandplacestoexplore.Some of thebestbeaches lie onLapadpeninsula and some of the most beautiful walking paths along theseaas well.The interior is mostly green and calm with plenty of attractive sea views.it’scalmandresidential, soyou don’t get the feeling that you’rein atouristedplace at all.

Where we can find out more about you and your business?

You can check out our Funky Wheels Dubrovnik website and follow us on social networks.