The city of Zadar, Croatia, is the largest city in northern Dalmatia and one of the country’s least popular destinations, and it’s quite a pity because the marble and traffic-free streets create a great atmosphere.
The interesting thing about Zadar is that its street layout still follows the old Roman street plan, and much like other cities in the country and region, like Split and Dubrovnik, it also feature Roman ruins and a few medieval churches. There are actually thirty-four old churches in and around the city, the oldest one being St. Simeon. You should especially consider visiting the St. Anastasia Cathedral – which features a wonderful and impressive organ – and St. Donat’s church which is an extremely well preserved pre-Romanesque building in general.
The Roman Forum in Zadar is one of the best preserved Roman Forums in existence and since it’s so well preserved it’s used by locals to stroll and just hang out enjoying the ruins.
There are still 16th century fortifications protecting the limits of the city on the landward side, but there are high walls still running along the harbour.
The Old Town has seen several rebuilding efforts and nowadays it features a mix of traditional houses and modern constructions.
The culture-vulture will have a couple of museums to explore and those who just want to relax can take a stroll on the promenade along Obala Kralja Petra Kresmira IV.
There are a couple of small beaches strewn across the city and by night, the city comes alive when the large student population starts pouring into the bars and cafes. Interesting fact about the University of Zadar is that it was founded back in 1396, making it not only the oldest university in Croatia but also one of the oldest on the continent.
It’s true that the offers of the city are not as many as other Croatian destinations, this might be the reason behind its low popularity. However the city does offer enough sights to keep you interested and it is a great spot to head to if you want to relax during your vacation.