Zadar is probably the most Renaissance-like town inside its walls of all Dalmatian places, with wider streets and public spaces. Five Wells Square ♥ and Narodni Trg ♥ are among the most interesting squares. The walls are part of the serial Venetian Defenses UNESCO World Heritage site, with a couple of impressive gates, the Land Gate ♥ and the Sea Gate ♥.
Most of the top attractions are clustered around the cathedral in what is known as the Episcopal Complex. The cathedral tower ♥ is fairly easy to climb and has nice views on all sides; the viewing platform on top is small and narrow, and can feel crowded with just a dozen of people on it. Cathedral of St Anastasia ♥ is comparatively spartan, but with tremendous organ and a few nice features.
Round church of St Donatus ♥ is almost without any decorations, but column capitals and a couple of reliefs are exquisite, well worth a look.
The open-access Roman Forum cannot compare to similar places elsewhere, but it is unmissable right by the aforementioned complex.
The killer feature of Zadar is the Sea Organ ♥♥♥ at the end of the seaside promenade. You need to wait for the waves from a passing vessel to fully appreciate it, in case you happen to come by when the waters are completely calm; the organ still “plays” in the absence of waves, but they bring forward fury. At night, the same edge of the promenade is reputedly gorgeously lighted by the installation known as the Greeting to the Sun, but our schedule did not allow us to stay in Zadar until the nightfall.
The artisan market along the sea promenade has a number of interesting stalls. There is also a great children playground for younger visitors.
Among the other attractions in town that we did not include in our itinerary but that may merit a visit are Museum of Illusions and Museum of Antique Glass, located near each other. There are also other churches that could be stepped into.
Places to Eat
Restaurant Groppo ♥♥ on the main street near the cathedral was a semi-random choice for lunch, on the strength of one member of our party seemingly remembering eating there on a past visit to town. Very good choice it was, with all selections getting high grades, and a pleasant service. Our damage: Kn 550 for three adults and a child, with a bottle of wine. Last visit: Summer 2019.