Adriatic Jewel Named Best European Destination In 2016


This year, as in previous years, the “European Best Destinations” travel organization in Brussels organized a contest to determine the best travel destination in Europe. Twenty amazing places were nominated, and the Adriatic jewel Zadar has been recognized as the Number 1 destination for 2016.  There are many reasons thousands of people nominated Zadar for this award: its beautiful old town, its beaches, its sunsets, its restaurants…The list is endless, but we will mention just some of them to fire your imagination. 

Zadar’s rich history is carved in picturesque facades, in paving stones smoothed by centuries of traffic, and in a romantic spirit that leaves an unforgettable impression on everyone who visits the city for the first time. The old town with its narrow streets, churches, squares, and fountains takes you back to the Roman era, to a time in the 1st century BC, when Zadar (Zara in Italian) was a colony of the great Empire. The early Imperial period left behind remnants of an ancient Roman forum in front of the church of Saint Donat and the Archbishop´s Palace, now a famous attraction for tourists. Centuries later, the Middle Ages left a legacy in the form of what is today Zadar’s most iconic building – the St. Donat Church – from whose belfry you can get the most amazing view of the city. For those who want to explore the city’s ancient treasures thoroughly, the permanent exhibition of Religious Art in a collection known as “The Gold and Silver of Zadar” is the right place to visit.  From ancient times until the present, Zadar has been one of the most important trading ports on the Adriatic, attracting people from all over the world who have shaped it into the modern metropolis that Zadar is today.

Nature has been as kind to this City as its history. The sunset in Zadar is a unique experience – when the Sun starts falling into the sparkling sea, the sky looks like it is aflame, and it paints the whole city with a warm red-burgundy color. In order to make this stunning scene complete, and even more beautiful, Zadar’s citizens have erected Greeting to the Sun, an installation consisting of three hundred multi-layered glass plates with photo-voltage solar modules which seem to dance with the Sun.  When you add to this a magnificent view of the harbor and the islands, plus the sound of the Sea Organs, there is nothing else than to start packing…

Another attraction for which is Zadar famous for is the Sea Organs, constructed by the architect Nikola Basic, who also designed the Greeting to the Sun. Just as the Greeting to the Sun communicates with light, the Sea Organs communicate with sound. The Organs form part of the seventy meters long waterfront, which consists of several tiers of stairs descending to the sea. Under the stairs there are 35 pipes of different lengths and widths, with whistles which play 7 chords of 5 tones. When the sea waves hit the pipes and push the air through them, the sound of organ music wafts over the waterfront.  Nikola Basic’s design was the joint winner of the 2006 European Prize for Urban Public Space, which honored it as the “perfect grandstand for watching the sunset over the sea.”


These are just a few out of a seemingly endless list of Zadar’s attractions. The only way to explore the rest of it is to book a trip and dive into the beauty and charm of this historic city on the Adriatic


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