Zadar is wonderful at any time of the year, but travelling in spring has some advantages. The weather is warming up after rainy and windy winter, the days are longer and flowers are starting to bloom. Even the Adriatic is not warm enough to swim in until the second half of May, daily temperatures are about 20°C so the weather is not too hot and there are lots of outdoor activities that you can do.
One more good thing about visiting Zadar in spring is that it is off-season period and tourist’s arrivals are quite lower compared to July or August, so you’ll get a better feeling for how the locals live, without city and traffic crowds. Also costs for accommodation and transportation are lower and you can come across some excellent offers.
Day on beautiful mountain, amazing cycling along coastline and incredibly scenic walks in natural parks, find out things that you can do in springtime in Zadar.
1. Virtual Reality of Zadar’s history
Virtual Reality technology is like a time machine that will enable you to relive the most significant events of turbulent Zadar’s past. You will discover more than 2000 years of history of the city of Zadar in a fun and interesting way. The assistant will guide you through the old town and you will stop in 8 different locations where you will put on VR glasses. With VR glasses on, you will step into the center of Roman Forum, see the battle from 1202, relive bombing in World War II and discover places that are otherwise closed for public. VR glasses will make you feel like you are really present in a historical moment of the place shown and you will enjoy high quality animations and sound effects.
After the VR projection you will be able to compare, on site, the way that Zadar looks nowadays and how it looked back in time. You will hear stories about the way that people lived before, their rituals, find out why Zadar was attacked by Crusaders and see where lies the chest made of 250 kg of silver and gold.
VR city tour is available all year round. Click here to book Virtual Reality of Zadar’s history.
2. Cycle on the island of Ugljan
There are attractive cycling routes on the island of Ugljan. You can rent a bike in Zadar or take Island Ugljan self guided bike tour. From Gaženica port in Zadar you will reach the island after 20-min ferry ride. Ugljan Island is considered a suburb of the city of Zadar as it lies just opposite to it and it is also called ‘Olive island’ thanks to its many olive groves. On the island you will see plenty of bays, beaches and small fishing villages that spread along the coast. From St. Michael’s fortress situated on a hill, you can enjoy a wonderful view of the city of Zadar, the Velebit mountain and scattered islands of the archipelago.
3. Discover Royal town of Nin
Nin is the oldest royal Croatian town and the place where the Croatian state was born. See the place where seven Croatian kings were crowned and visit the old town situated on a tiny island that is connected by bridges to the mainland. In the old town you will see the remains of a former Roman temple, but also an urban villa. At the very entrance to the city you will notice an unusual wooden boat, which is actually a replica of the historic boat Condura Croatica from the 11th century, which was used by former inhabitants of this area.
You can find out more about this boat if you visit the Museum of Nin Antiquities located on the square. Besides walking through the old town, you can also visit the Nin saltworks where you will learn how salt is produced, and with the guidance of an expert guide you can visit the salt fields.
While you are in Nin, make sure to try specialties with Nin’s Šokol, a cured meat product characteristic of this town.
If you would like to have a local guide to tell you the secrets of this ancient town and visit Royal vineyards, then you should book a Tour to Royal town of Nin, story of salt and wine tasting.
4. Visit island of Pag: home of famous cheese, lamb and beautiful lace
Visit the island of Pag, which is connected to the mainland by a bridge. Stroll through the old town of Pag, its streets paved with white stone and discover beautiful church, remains of medieval city walls and palaces. Visit the Lace Gallery in the old town of Pag to see the finely crafted lace, a unique product of Pag women. The art of making Pag lace is on the UNESCO list of intangible heritage (here is a list of all UNESCO protected goods in Croatia).
Pag is also known for its gastronomy. Pag cheese is made from sheep’s milk and is among the best in the world. This cheese has been awarded many times at numerous world competitions, and is even ahead of the most prominent French cheeses. Another delicacy is the lamb, whether it is a spit-roasted or prepared under the bell it is an absolute must-try.
Take Tour to Pag island and cheese tasting and walk through the old town of the city of Pag with a licensed guide, visit a family owned cheese factory and spend great day on this unusual island.
5. Take Jeep safari on Velebit mountain
Jeep safari on Velebit mountain offers you a unique opportunity to drive off-road vehicles on the old Master’s road, you will enjoy magnificent views from more than 1,000 m above sea level, and you will see unique karst phenomena and one of the most attractive mountain peaks. During the Jeep safari, you will stop at a traditional rural estate, located on a mountain. You will discover delicious traditional food that is usually served in this part of Croatia. Price per person is 670.00 kn or 91,00 eur and you can book Velebit Jeep safari here.
6. See amazing water world in Krka National park
Krka National park is located near historical town of Šibenik, just an hour of drive from Zadar.
It was named after Krka river and proclaimed a national park in 1985. This amazing river is 72.5 km long, making it the 22nd longest river in Croatia. Its course formed lakes and 7 magnificent travertine waterfalls that are referred as Magnificent seven.
These waterfalls represent exceptional natural value and they are easily accessed and attractive for all true nature lovers because the area of the park is designed in a manner that offers visitors educational trails, close and safe contact with nature and breathtaking sightseeing points. The area of Skradinski buk is most frequently the main aim of the visitors. It is the biggest cascade on the Krka river, 46 m high with 17 barriers creating a wonderful sight.
Near Skradinski buk are the remains of the former hydroelectric power plant. It was the oldest such plant, built and put to work in 1895, only two days after Tesla’s hydroelectric power plant on the Niagara Falls. Thus, Šibenik got electric city lighting before many European cities.
The power of water was used by locals and for that reason water mills can be found on six out of seven waterfalls of the Krka National Park.
Several water mills have been reconstructed and they were transformed into exhibition areas for ethnographic collections where old crafts, life of millers, traditional folk costumes and traditional food are presented. Etno Village at Krka National Park recently received the prestigious Golden Flower of Europe award in a competition among several thousand sites.
Visit Krka National park in a guided tour – Krka waterfalls National Park from Zadar.
7. Walk along unique turquoise lakes in Plitvice National park
Plitvice Lakes National Park is situated in the mountainous region of Croatia, 1,5 hours of driving from Zadar. Plitvice are Croatia’s first national park proclaimed in 1949. It became part of the UNESCO World Heritage List very early, since 1979 due to outstanding universal value of the process of sedimentation of tufa, special kind of limestone, which resulted in the creation of 16 lakes joined by unique travertine waterfalls.
The process itself is continuous, and the lakes are constantly changing. The lake system is divided into the Upper and Lower lakes; the upper lakes lie on dolomite layers, while the lower lakes are cut into a limestone canyon.
You can take a walk along wooden trails, ride in a electric boat across the largest lake or ride in a tourist train to see numerous waterfalls and admire beautiful turquoise color of the lakes. One particular waterfall in the Lakes is different from all the others. It is 78 meters high Veliki slap (eng. Great waterfall) – the highest waterfall of Croatia. Another outstanding value of Plitvice is the beech and fir forest that cover almost 80% of the Park.
The Lakes belong to the most impressive places in the world. Even the CNN listed Plitvice on their list of 25 the most beautiful places around the world. Visit Plitvice with a local guide in a tour with organized transportation and tickets included in the price, take Full day tour to Plitvice Lakes National park from Zadar.