Zadar is by far one of the coolest cities in Croatia. Whether you’re looking to explore the outdoors or immerse yourself in local culture, you won’t be stuck for things to do. Check out these suggestions for starters...
A boutique hotel built on a medieval fortress in an enviable position in the old town of Zadar, Hotel Bastion offers rooms which look onto the harbour, where you can watch the ferries depart for the picturesque islands nearby.
Conveniently, it's also located across the road from the Garden, one of Zadar’s most popular bars that has quality live music and big name DJs throughout the summer months.
Explore the city by bike with Zzuum. Zadar is a great city to cycle around and take in the sights and atmosphere.
You can rent bikes for as little as €16 for a day, but they also offer speedboat and motorcycle rentals if you’re feeling a bit more adventurous.
Pet Bunara is a charming little restaurant with a romantic atmosphere that makes it perfect for couples. Most importantly, they do great food.
Organic, seasonal and elegant cuisine are their specialities. The management are careful to pay close attention to where their ingredients come from, and use in-season, locally grown ingredients as much as possible.
One of the city’s newest attractions, the Museum of Ancient Glass is housed in the 19th century Cosmacendi Palace where you can enjoy breathtaking views across the Jazine harbour.
The museum has one of the best collections of Roman glassware, with an impressive selection of goblets, jars and vials.
Discover Croatia's off the beaten track siights with Velebit Photo Safari. Take a one day trip to explore Mount Zelebit and the River Zrmanja. Spectacular.
Surrounded by stunning, unspoiled nature, Paklenica National Park is a climber’s paradise. This is an ideal day trip for anyone with an adventurous spirit.
Paklenica National Park is filled with high peaks and stunning views, deep gorges and forests. There are a number of challenging hiking trails and you can also go rock-climbing. A hike in Paklenica National Park is sure to get your adrenaline pumping.
Discover ancient art and artefacts at Zadar’s Archaeological Museum. The museum has several departments including pre-historic, ancient, medieval and submarine archaeological units.
Over 100,000 items dating from the Palaeolithic time to the end of the 11th century await.
Explore natural caves with a charismatic guide. You’ll be guided through secret labyrinths and narrow passages where you’ll be met by stalagmite-shaped pipe organs, cuttlefish, crabs and maybe even a fairy.
Konoba Bonaca specialises in delicious, rustic Croatian cuisine. This restaurant set on the peninsula in the heart of Zadar has a fun atmosphere with top service.
Konoba Bonaca offers decent choices whether you’re a meat lover or a vegetarian - all dishes are reasonably priced.
Right in the middle of Zadar, Rector’s Palace is one of the most beautiful structures on the Dalmatian Coast.
It was renovated in 2017 and hosts a wide range of cultural events throughout the year.
Serving traditional Croatian cuisine with a modern twist, Bruschetta prides itself on its tasty homemade dishes.
The owners source quality ingredients from the Zadar region to create a wide range of dishes, from fish and meat carpaccio to pizza, pasta and bruschetta (obviously).
After World War II, Zadar’s coastline was destroyed and architect Nikola Bašić was given the opportunity to reclaim the space with something spectacular.
He came up with the Sea Organ. It looks like a simple set of steps leading down to the water, but underneath is something magic.
When the waves interact with the steps it creates random but harmonic sounds. Nothing better than a free concert.
It’s not just the Sea Organ that makes the Zadar waterfront a great place to visit. As the sun goes down the lights on the shore come out to play.
Greeting to the Sun is a solar powered light show that begins during what some call “the most beautiful sunset in the world”. Don't miss it.
- Seán Walsh