Enjoy a Perfect Day in Zadar

Zadar is located on Croatia’s beautiful Dalmatian coast,  known for the Roman and Venetian ruins of its peninsular Old Town. There are several Venetian gates in the city walls. Surrounding the Roman-era Forum is 11th-century St. Mary’s Convent, with religious art dating to the 8th century. There’s also the grand, 12th-century St. Anastasia’s Cathedral and the round, 9th-century pre-Romanesque Church of St. Donatus.

Zadar is both an atmospheric time machine and an open-air museum. Here on display, you will find some of the most beautiful monuments of architecture and cultural heritage of the eastern Adriatic coast. Its city walls are the ancient guardians of this still vibrant historic museum in the open, end they were rightly added to UNESCO’s World Heritage List.

Installed in 2005, the bizarre but immensely popular Sea Organ created by Zadar-educated Nikola Bašić has given a new dimension to the city’s waterfront. As you approach the steps at the tip of the peninsula that contains the town centre, strange noises arise from holes drilled into the marble, linked to 35 organ pipes beneath the waves. These create unworldly sounds randomly dictated by the ebb and flow of the water, an unusually comforting feeling as you lie on the flat stones and sunbathe.

Just a few steps away from the Sea Organ, you will find the Monument to the Sun. It consists of some three hundred glass plates in the form of a circle that are on the same level as the stone pavement. The circle has a diameter of 22 meters, so it is a pretty astonishing sight.

But here’s the interesting part – the circle is supposed to represent the sun, and you can also see representations of other planets in the solar system near it, leading you straight to the Sea Organ. At night the solar-powered monument lights up, for a truly spectacular experience. Monument to the Sun was actually designed by the same architect who designed the Sea Organ, Nikola Bašić. These two masterpieces of his are indeed connected – the Sea Organ represents an attempt to communicate with nature via sounds, while the huge solar panel stands for communication with light.

Watch Sunset from Riva. Zadar’s southwestern quay is always a great spot for strolling, picknicking or even jumping into the sea for a quick dip. As the sun lowers in the sky, people drift down to the waterfront to watch one of the Adriatic’s best shows. Alfred Hitchcock described the Zadar sunset as “the most beautiful sunset in the world” on his visit in 1964.

But wait! Don’t leave the southwestern quay just yet. After dark, the Sun Salutation Light Show continues the light show. 10,000 solar panels release the light they’ve absorbed during the day to create a spectacular light show after dark. This 22m circular plate is one of Zadar’s most beloved attractions.

Zadar’s famous 9th-century St Donat Church  is known for its acoustics. As the church is now de-consecrated, it is the site of frequent classical concerts. The most praised concerts occur during the “St Donat Musical Evenings” running almost nightly in July and August.  

Zadar’s jewel in the crown is its unique collection of religious artefacts and Venetian art housed in two floors of the Treasury alongside the Church Of St Mary Known as the Gold and Silver of Zadar, it comprises sumptuous, shining reliquaries containing limbs of sundry saints, icons and crucifixes, all painstakingly decorated and finely carved. These were curated over hundreds of years by Benedictine nuns – the adjoining convent is still in operation.

Zadar’s is the largest Roman forum east of the Adriatic. It was established by Emperor Augustus at the turn of the first century according to two inscriptions found at the excavation site when the forum was rediscovered in 1930. After bomb damage in the Second World War the space was cleared and by the 60s the forum began to take shape once more. What remains are fragments of a colonnade and a pillory, where criminals received a very public punishment! The temple and basilica that once stood here are gone, but you can still trace the raised ground of its foundations.

Zadar has some of the best accommodations and dining Croatia has to offer. 

Choose from one of many beautiful rental options or stay at a luxury world class resort. Almayer Art & Heritage Hotel Depandance and  Bastion Heritage Hotel – Relais & Châteaux  are just a few of the standout properties in Zadar.

And for dining, try,  Fosa, Corte Vino & More, Restaurant Kastel Konoba and Pet Bunara.

All In all Zadar has it all for your Perfect Days in Croatia!