Diocletian was a Dalmatian-born soldier who reigned as emperor from November 248 AD to May 305 AD. When he retired, the emperor did so at what is now known as Diocletian’s Palace and lived there until his death. He had built Diocletian’s Palace between 293 and 303 AD, not far from the town of his birth, Salona. This palace right in the heart of Split, and is one of the best preserved monuments of Roman architecture in the world. In 1979, it was declared – with the historic city of Split – a UNESCO World Heritage site. The ruins of the Palace can also be found throughout the city. With military fortress, imperial residence and fortified town, the palace covers over 31,000 square meters.
Diocletian’s Palace is one of the most imposing Roman ruins. Don’t expect a palace though, nor a museum – this is the living heart of the city, its labyrinthine streets packed with people, bars, shops and restaurants. The ground plan of the palace is an irregular rectangle with towers projecting from the western, northern, and eastern facades. Each wall has a gate named after a metal: at the northern end is the Golden Gate, while the southern end has the Bronze Gate. The eastern gate is the Silver Gate and to the west is the Iron Gate. The Palace is built of white local limestone of high quality, most of which was from quarries on the island of Brac; and brick made in Salonitan and other workshops. Some material for decoration was imported: Egyptian granite columns and sphinxes, fine marble for revetments.
Today, the 220 buildings within the palace boundaries are home to around 3,000 people and its cellars are a marketplace for tourists and locals alike.
The Euphrasian Basilica
The Euphrasian Basilica in Porec is the most integrally preserved early Christian cathedral complex in the region and unique by virtue of the fact that all the basic components – church, memorial chapel, atrium, baptistry and episcopal palace – are preserved.
It was built on the remains of an earlier three-naval basilica, in the first half of the 6th century, during the period of Bishop Euphrasius, whose name it bears. Visitors’ tours are possible every day except during religious rituals. It is possible to climb up to the steeple and view Porec and its surroundings. The complex of the Euphrasian Basilica represents a significant global monument acknowledged by UNESCO organisation in the year 1997. The Euphrasian basilica is mostly known for the amazing mosaics dating from the 6th century and are considered to be some of the finest Byzantine mosaics in the World. The basilica is filled with superb pieces of art throughout, from mosaics to architecture and ornamental pieces. Glittering mosaics on the interior and the front of the Church, are the most beautiful preserved works of Byzantine art. Mosaics above apses represent the apostles and Jesus, then Bishop of Euphrasius with a scale model of the basilica in the central part, guardian angels, the Virgin Mary with Jesus in the womb, local saints martyrs, especially Saint Mauro – the first bishop, the martyr and patron saint of the city and the entire Istrian diocese. With the very edges of the arch are the U-turn “medallions” with figures of martyrs. Two main mosaics represent the Annunciation and Visitation. Three-aisled cathedral carry two rows of marble columns with elaborate capitals. Overall, this is one spectacular monument.
The Plitvice Lakes
The Plitvice Lakes are the best known and most visited among the eight national parks in Croatia. They are also the only natural monument in Croatia, which was included on the UNESCO World Heritage List, and had been listet in 1979, as one of the first natural sites at all. Plitvice Lakes National Park contains a series of beautiful lakes, caves and waterfalls. The lakes are situated on the eponymous Plitvice plateau, between the mountains of Lička Plješevica, Mala Kapela and Medvedjak. The sixteen lakes are separated into an upper and lower cluster formed by runoff from the mountains. The lakes collectively cover an area of about two km², with the water exiting from the lowest lake to form the Korana River. They are renowned for their distinctive colours, ranging from azure to green, grey or blue. The colours change constantly depending on the quantity of minerals or organisms in the water and the angle of sunlight. The Plitvice Lakes national park is heavily forested, mainly with beech, spruce, and fir trees, and features a mixture of Alpine and Mediterranean vegetation. Plitvice are rich and various animal species located in the deep woods, such as: deer, bears, wolves, boars and rare bird species. The tallest waterfall at the park is Veliki Slap at 70 metres tall. The park itself has 3 hotels and a campsite, while visitors usually spend their time at Plitvice Lakes hiking along the trails taking in the spectacular views. The park offers a variety of recreational activities: walking, hiking, trips with the electric park boat and park train, photography, cycling, skiing and rowing.
Trogir is city with 2300 years of tradition. It’s rich culture is created under the influence of old Greeks, Romans, Venetians. Trogir with concentration of palaces, churches, towers, fortress on a small island in every way deserves it’s nickname “THE STONE BEAUTY”.
Trogir is a historic town and harbour on the Adriatic coast in Croatia, with a population of approximately 13,000. It is on the UNESCO World Heritage List as it is one of the best preserved medieval towns in Europe. Trogir is a remarkable example of urban continuity. Trogir is a living monument to medieval art and architecture. He developed from the 13th to the 15th centuries and was once the cultural centre of Dalmatia. Its golden age is visible everywhere. Cathedral of St. Lawrence was built in the 13th century. Floor plan has reduced Romanesque basilica of three naves. It represents a magnificent Romanesque building. The vault of the central nave is assumed in circular arcs sharpness Gothic style. The Benedictine Convent of St. Nicholas-The church alongside the convent (founded in 1066) was put up on the side of the pre-Romanesque church of St Domnius. The interior was given a radical Baroque treatment in the mid-18th century. In the city Trogir you can also visit and see: Chapel of the blessed Jonh of Trogir, Pinacotheque, Radovan’s portal, The Benedictine Convent of St. Nicholas, Convent of St. Dominic, The main city square, St Sebastian with city clock tower, The city loggia, St Barbara`s curch, The small Cipiko palace, The large Cipiko palace, St Peter’s curch, The Garagnin palace.
The Old City Dubrovnik
Dubrovnik is located in the heart of Europe on the Adriatic coast of the Republic of Croatia. It is the southernmost part of Croatia. Dubrovnik is the cultural and social centre of the region, the County of Dubrovnik-Neretva, also Croatian most famous city. He is on the UNESCO World Heritage List since 1979.
The Old Town and its many sights (including the well-preserved city walls along which you can walk) is one of the top attractions here. If you are visiting in the summer, do not miss the world-renowned Dubrovnik Summer Festival, with music, theatre and dance performances. The old city is totally surrounded by walls from the late middle ages, with several towers. The Franciscan monastery with an Romanesque cloister at the entrance to the oldest European pharmacy still in it’s original state. Also, the Dominican monastery has a beautiful cloister from the 14th century and a museum. At the end of Stradun (the main street) is the Sponza palace (16th century) and on the right, next to the city-tavern (gradska kavana) there is the late gothic palace called Knezev dvor, build from 1435 until 1441, today part is a museum. Stradun represents the core of the Old Town. The word comes from Venetian “stradone” which means “big street”. It is the center and any corner is the meeting place of locals and visitors. Walking down this big street, people who work in restaurants will offer you the menu every 20-30 meters, but don’t get discouraged, you will eventually find a proper meal in one of numerous choices. All along the Dubrovnik coast, the sea is wonderfully blue and clear. Warm Mediterranean climate, cultural abundance, and natural beauty of the region are only a few of the points that make Dubrovnik an appealing destination. The whole region deals exclusively in tourism. The wonders of Dubrovnik attract tourists from all over the globe and it is no wonder it has been nick named – The Pearl of the Adriatic.
The Cathedral of St. James
Cathedral of St. James in Sibenik is the most important architectural achievement XV and XVI century on Croatian soil. Because of their exceptional value this Gothic-Renaissance monument in 2000. was included on UNESCO’s World Heritage list. The Gothic and Renaissance styles are overlapping in its construction. The building is richly decorated both inside and outside. The building of the church was initiated in 1402, though plans on its construction had already begun in 1298, when Sibenik became a municipality. The actual work to transform the older Romanesque cathedral began in 1431, it was completed in three phases, from 1433 to 1441. Inside the cathedral there are four large, evenly matched columns on which the dome rests. This cathedral is interesting because it has no belltower. The form and the decorative elements of the Cathedral, such as a remarkable frieze decorated with 71 sculptured faces of men, women, and children, also illustrate the successful fusion of Gothic and Renaissance art. This cathedral was built by of lime stone and marble from the stone mason’s Island of Brac in Croatia. The building itself was supervised by Juraj Dalmatinac and Nikola Firentinac, famous stone masters from Croatia. Sibenik’s cathedral is one of the marvels of the Dalmatian Coast. During the war, the cathedral was damaged, but there is no visible damage.
In the same square as the cathedral is a Memorial to Juraj Dalmatinac, created by the greatest Croatian sculptor of the 20th century, Ivan Mestrovic.
Old Town Plain
The large plain occupies the island’s central area. Its name kept changing with the successive arrival of masters. First known by the Greeks as chora Pharu, it became Ager Pharensis in Roman times, to be replaced by the medieval name of Campus Sancti Stephani (the Field of St. Stephen). It is now known as Old Town Plain. It has sustained the life on the island for thousands of years. The Plain is in fact a cultured landscape, formed by thousands of years of human labour. Its ancient man-made features originate from 24 centuries ago when Greek colonist divided the Plain into rectangular plots of 1×5 stadia, (ca.180x900m), each fenced in with drywall. The Plain was crisscrossed with major roads cutting through it in regular longitudinal and transveral directions. Today is a known point in the field at the crossroads from which the Greek surveyor construction started this venture. We also are the owner of a large parcel from the Greek era: Matij (son) Pitejev (gr.Mathios Pytheos), whose name is engraved on the stone medjaskom kept in the Archaeological Museum in Zagreb. Today is a known point in the field at the crossroads from which the Greek surveyor construction started this venture. We also are the owner of a large parcel from the Greek era: Matij (son) Pitejev (gr.Mathios Pytheos), whose name is engraved on the stone, which is kept at the Archaeological Museum in Zagreb. For centuries, Old Town Plain has been covered with vineyards, and in the course of Antiquity and the Middle Ages people also grew wheat. Fig trees grew at plots edges and in less fertile zones. Almond trees were planted nearer to the settlements, almost touching the gardens. Olive groves, than as today, covered the low hills surrounding the Plain. Carob trees grew among the olive trees. Still higher lay, until quite recently, terraced fields of lavender. Now, Aleppo pines are slowly taking over the terraceland and gradually descending to the edges of the settlements. Old Town Plain and the Historic centre of Old Town were incscribed on UNESCO List of the World Heritage sites on July 8th, 2008. Since than Old Town Plain is managed by Old Town Plain Agency.