Secret proposals are very popular in Dubrovnik. Even with plenty of experience I still leave nothing to chance, carefully plan and suggest best options with lots of tiny details. You wouldn’t believe it, but I still have stomach butterflies minutes before the proposal. Is my camera hidden well enough? Am I far enough, I am not looking suspicious, right? Oh, I hope random tourists won’t walk through here in the next 60 seconds… But don’t worry, she is gonna say Yes, I have a 100% success rate over 10 years.
I’ll be just a random guy, wearing sunglasses, not making eye contact as you approach. My other camera is in my bag so I don’t look like a pro. But sometimes I am a boat crew member, sometimes I have to hide behind the bush, well, not that often, but those were fun times.
After the proposal, I’ll quickly introduce myself and give you 5 minutes of private time, as it’s a very emotional moment. Of course, I’ll make sure to keep taking candids from a distance. And later on we’ll capture some portraits and maybe even proceed to a photo shoot, depending on your preferences.
SRD HILL PANORAMIC VIEW
By far the most popular location but a little tricky to execute. It’s easily accessible with a cable car and getting to the top to capture awesome holiday shots is a natural and fun afternoon activity to recommend to the significant other. Maybe you even have a dinner booked afterwards so you’ll have a reason to dress accordingly. Although, in my opinion, outfit is not important at all for proposals. It’s your very special moment and with lots of experience with both, I’d say it’s often more emotional then a wedding itself where you’re surrounded with lots of people.
If you’re looking for the best single shot of a proposal I’d recommend this location. But if we are on foot (no car hire), after the proposal and some candid and portrait shots we can’t get more creative up there, so my services last 15-20 minutes.
Why is it tricky to execute… The spot is located 3 minutes walking from the cable car station. And this whole area with an amazing view, all the way from the station/restaurant towards the south, since 2021 is covered with ‘do not cross’ fence, as the Zipline company is operating there. This means that if they have groups rotating (often they do, especially towards the sunset), I need to politely ask if they can let me (us) through after they finish. They are kind and always cooperative, but I have to wait for them to finish. Sometimes it’s 15, sometimes 45 minutes. During this time you can have a drink at the restaurant Panorama (we’ll be on whatsApp).
Pros: Amazing proposal photos
Cons: Can’t schedule the exact moment for proposal, limited angles & not much variety besides the view for the photos after the proposal
Komarda is my personal favorite place for proposals. It’s not 400m above Old town birds eye kind of photo, but still offers a nice sea level wide shot of the Old town port. Dubrovnik is packed with tourists during the summer, but thankfully Komarda is still a hidden gem, with a handful of locals swimming and sunbathing in the late afternoon. I never had privacy issues there, maybe a person or two can see you from a distance, but nothing like applauding and cheering kind of exposure. Kneeling is a brief moment and always goes unnoticed at this location.
What’s great about Komarda is the very easy access and if you’d like we can even proceed to the Old town to take some more photos (15 to 60 min shoot is common).
Most of the proposals I do at Komarda are in the late afternoon, but if you can think of a reason to suggest your partner to be there around 7.30 in the morning, that would be the ideal time for a completely empty area and perfect sunlight.
Pros: Nice sea level wide view of the Old town, easy access, budget friendly, lots of photo ops afterwards
Cons: Don’t see any
EARLY MORNING IN THE OLD TOWN
Dubrovnik is quite popular destination for photo shoots. I often have clients traveling for weeks all across Europe and among all famous destinations they travel to, they pick Dubrovnik to get photo memories. If a photo shoot doesn’t sound like a strange activity to you, then proposing during the early morning shoot (6:45 start), in a crowds free, magical environment is a wonderful and stress free opportunity. Plenty of locations to pick from; here are a few examples below, but basically if you see any photo on my website you like, we can find the best time to be there to avoid crowds.
Pros: Many location options, you’re dressed for photo shoot, crowds free, not suspicious
Cons: None, if booking a photo shoot is an option to you
BOATS, FLORAL SETUPS, MUSICIANS, CHAMPAGNE, DRONES…
I am often asked if I provide some of these – unfortunately I personally don’t. I don’t have a team and am quite busy in the summer, juggling between shoots, emails and editing, usually without a single day off. Also, I would be charging a commission for services I am not expert in, so I let professionals do setup arrangements.
For boats, I’d recommend finding a well rated boat hire company and contacting them directly for best prices and then I’ll connect with them for details (wearing crew tee etc).
For floral setups, musicians, tables, champagne I recommend connecting with wedding planners in Dubrovnik. There are many and they are all great, feel free to browse Instagram for some ideas or I can recommend a few I work with. Also some hotels are really well suited for proposals (Excelsior, Argentina, Palace are some of them), so if you’re staying there they can arrange everything for you – they will secure a private spot and setup you’d like.
I don’t do video nor have a drone.
Hopefully these examples helped to pick the spot you like. Feel free to contact me and we’ll get into more details. Depending on location, further instructions may include a map, live street view, maybe a short video, tips on where and how to stand etc.