The walled city of Zadar
Long one of the Dalmatian coast’s maritime crossroads, Zadar flaunts its history in its streets. Always abuzz with some sailing regatta or other, and always wonderful for a stroll, the old city sits on a headland that juts out into the straits of Zadar. This isn’t the postcard-preserve of some towns and cities nearby, but a fascinating melting together of architectural styles, an open-air gallery of the town’s rich, torrid past of wars and trade, sieges and occupation. The streets are a treat to wander, a perfect bite-sized insight into Croatia. Pretty Romanesque churches abut bold modern architecture. Narrow medieval streets lead past Corinthian columns to 1950s housing, then back into numerous peaceful shaded courtyards where some of Croatia’s finest coffee is brewed up. And while you’re here, check out the sea organ – a musical instrument built into the harbour wall that plays music by way of sea waves and tubes located underneath marblesteps. Unique.