Explore Dalmatia and enjoy the Dalmatian culture with this list of things to do in Dalmatia. The landscapes, culture and history of the region will amaze you!
Dalmatia, the southern region of Croatia, also known as the Heart of the Adriatic sea is an essential destination while visiting Croatia. The sea with its crystal clear water, cities with a huge cultural heritage and the warm and friendly people will make your experience something to remember. There are countless places to visit and things to do in Dalmatia but we gathered the ones we think are the best and most indispensable in order to present you the Top 10 things to do in Dalmatia.
1st Thing to do in Dalmatia: Visit the walls of Dubrovnik
The Pearl of the Adriatic, Dubrovnik is Croatia’s most touristic destination and that's for lots of reasons. Simply beautiful, the city is surrounded by ancient walls and a mesmerizing blue sea.
The medieval town of Dubrovnik has been included in the UNESCO’s World Heritage List and you can see why you wouldn't want to miss visiting The Cathedral Of The Assumption, The Onofrio’s Fountain, the Stradun main street and lots of other representative monuments around the centre. Enjoy the city’s nightlife, have dinner on a terrace under the light of the lanterns and continue with some live music and a slow walk through its cobbled streets, you won’t regret it.
Renting a kayak and getting into the incredibly beautiful sea is also a great choice and, as almost everyone knows, Dubrovnik has been used several times as a location to film Game of Thrones so you can also go on a walking tour to see where everything took place.
2nd Thing to do in Dalmatia: Amaze your senses in Zadar
Situated in the midwest part of the country, Zadar is a romantic city with a huge Venetian influence. The Church of St Donatus is one of the most symbolic monuments in Zadar as well as the city walls, which belong to the UNESCO’s World Heritage List.
If you keep walking through the coastline you will reach The Sea Organ, a 70-meter long music instrument that makes tunes using the waves of the Adriatic. Near to it, you can find The Greeting To The Sun, a glass installation in the ground that absorb solar energy during the day to transform it into an amazing set of lights at sunset.
Zadar is a city that makes your senses float and that’s why we think it belongs to these top choices.
3rd Thing to do in Dalmatia: Explore the old town of Split
The largest city of the region with the busiest port makes Split an undoubtedly important Croatian city but the actual reason for belonging to this list is the old town of the city.
The Diocletian Palace, which is included in UNESCO's World Heritage list, is one of the best-preserved Roman buildings. Actually, almost the entire old town is the Palace itself. The size of the palace combined with the streets and the Peristyle courtyard with its huge columns make this place a great location for tourists, so be ready for some crowds.
4th Thing to do in Dalmatia: Relax next to the sea in Trogir
About 30 km near Split you can visit the unique city of Trogir. The small old town of this city is connected to it by two bridges that take you to the northern part of the city and another bridge that will take you to Čiovo Island.
The Kamarlengo Castle, The Trogir Cathedral, The St Sebastian Church and the Cipiko Palace stand as the most representative monuments of the city.
Although Trogir is a small and touristic city, there is always a place for relaxation in hidden terraces, small city alleys or to take a dip in the sea.
5th Thing to do in Dalmatia: Admire the monuments of Šibenik
A bit more unknown city, Šibenik, is located in central Dalmatia and close to the Mouth of the River Krka and is one of the oldest coastal towns of Croatia. In this city, you will find narrow streets and lots of stairs which take part of its magic. If you get into the medieval old town you will soon arrive at a masterpiece of architecture, the St. Jacob Cathedral, which has been in the UNESCO World Heritage List since 2000.
The St Nicholas Fortress rises in a small island situated in the St Anthony’s Channel and was built by Venetians as a defensive system from Turks. This unique building is also part of the UNESCO World Heritage List making Sibenik one of the few cities in the world with more than one UNESCO monuments.
If you reached Šibenik you can’t miss going to the National Parks in the vicinity, such as Krka and Kornati and enjoying the Adriatic nature.
6th Thing to do in Dalmatia: Drink some water from the Cetina River spring
Near a small village of the same name, the Cetina River flows from Dinara Mountains to the Adriatic Sea. The spring of this river has the shape of a small pond but if you take a closer look, you will see the abyss on it. The water is crystal clear so you can admire the beauty of the inside of the spring. It is 110 metres deep so you can’t see the end of this cave. The water is cold but also so clear that you can drink it if you get thirsty.
This place is not very known with tourists so it hardly gets crowded, you can take advantage of this and have a relaxing time here with no intermissions.
7th Thing to do in Dalmatia: Visit the Islands Hvar, Vis, Brac and Šolta
These islands are a perfect destination starting from Split. They are all close and well connected and there you will find some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Therefore, Brač is a home to one of the world's most famous beaches with an interesting shape called Zlatni Rat. Lavender fields are well known in Hvar and olives and honey abound in Šolta while the natural beauty of Vis will astonish you.
8th Thing to do in Dalmatia: Taste the Dalmatian Gastronomy
It doesn’t matter which part of Dalmatia you go to, what you are visiting or when you surely want to taste the Dalmatian dishes. Dalmatian gastronomy is composed of Mediterranean cuisine so olive oil, prosciutto and fresh herbs predominate in this diet. As the Adriatic sea surrounds this territory, fresh seafood as anchovies, sardines, oysters or squids are typical here.
Meat does not lag behind, the previously mentioned prosciutto is often served as an appetizer. Pasticada, a traditional beef dish, and Peka, usually made of veal or lamb, are also the pride of the Dalmatian gastronomy.
9th Thing to do in Dalmatia: Take a ferry tour
The Adriatic Sea, one of the most beautiful ones, and lots of amazing islands to explore. This makes the perfect environment for a ferry tour. If you want to enjoy the sea at 100% you have to do it from the inside, swim on unexplored beaches, sail through islands full of nature and delight yourself with unknown landscapes.
You have lots of options for this, almost every coastal city offers ferry tours that will show you Dalmatia through another perspective. There are some that last for hours and other ones that are simple trips of 15 minutes take a choice according to your needs.
10th Thing to do in Dalmatia: Join locals in their traditional festivals
You have read about lots of cities and towns around Dalmatia by now, but you should also know that every single town has its own festival. You should prepare yourself, study the calendar and join some of them to experience Dalmatia with local people. Traditional costumes, dances and dishes will appear in those fests so save those days for it!
Festival of St Blaise in Dubrovnik, Saint Domnius in Split or the Fishermen’s fests that take place in almost all coastal towns are just some examples of what you can enjoy in Dalmatian Fests!
Now that you know the best places and activities to do in this beautiful region you will be able to have the most fulfilling experience in Dalmatia. However, this is a short list and of course, there are lots of other locations where you could have a great time in Dalmatia.
But for summing up, the coastal towns, the islands and their people are the best things you should enjoy in this region and if you do so, one single dose of Dalmatia won’t be enough for you anymore.