The town appeared after the period of the Turkish invasion in Bulgaria. The first accounts for its existence are to be found in artifacts from the XIV century. Its name was mentioned for the first time in the diary of King Arnold von Harf who visited the country in 1499. He described Dupnitsa as "a pleasant town". The town is the birthplace of the social activist from the Renaissance period Hristo Pavlovich (1804–1848), a teacher and a scholar who published the first Bulgarian book in secular script and the first Bulgarian printed publication of the Slav-Bulgarian History of Paisii Hilendarski.
In the town of Dupnitsa one can visit the Municipal Museum of History, the remains of the mediaeval fortress Kulata, the Mosque from the 14th century, the Clock Tower built in 1782, the church St. St. Constantine and Helena, restored in 1902, the church Holy Mother built in 1789 and the 1844 St. Nikola Church. The town has its own Institute of Pedagogy.
The town is located on the international highway and the railway line Sofia – Kulata – Athens.
The resort town Sapareva Banya is 15 km away from Dupnitsa. It was built over the ruins of an ancient Thracian settlement.