Things to do in
Zadar

Expect unique art installations, Roman ruins, and fascinating museums from this coastal Croatian city.

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Our most recommended things to do in Zadar

Zadar: Day Trip to Kornati and Telascica by Boat with Food

1. Zadar: Day Trip to Kornati and Telascica by Boat with Food

Discover some of the most stunning islands in the Kornati archipelago and enjoy a visit to Telascica Nature Park on a full-day boat tour from Zadar that includes breakfast, lunch, and swim stops. Cruise past peaceful bays, rugged cliffs, and rocky meadows while listening to your guide's commentary. Meet the boat crew in the city harbor in the morning. Depart from Zadar and stop at the ports of Drazenica and Preko (Ugljan island). Soak in panoramic views of Mrtovac, Levernaka, and Mana islands on the way to Kornati. Savor a welcome drink and a sandwich for breakfast. Sail around the Kornati cliffs while your guide shares its history with you. Upon arrival in Kornati, enjoy 1 hour of free time to explore the island. Don't miss the 6th-century Fort Tureta standing high on Tureta hill, and the Church of Our Lady of Tarac. Then, get back to the boat to sail onward to Telascica. Tuck into your onboard lunch, with a choice of grilled fish with salad or vegetarian pasta made in tomato sauce, accompanied by wine. As the boat drops anchor at Telascica port, get ready to make the most of your 3 hours in the bay. Once in Telascica Nature Park, you can walk to the 150-meter-high lookout for stunning views of the Adriatic and the Kornati islands, swim in Lake Mir or the open sea, or simply chill by the catering facilities to sip on cold drinks. Finally, settle back in for the 3-hour return trip to Zadar, admiring the coastline along the way. If needed, the boat will make stops at the ports of Drazenica and Preko.

Zadar: Full-Day Sailing Trip to Kornati

2. Zadar: Full-Day Sailing Trip to Kornati

Sail toward the southern part of Dugi Otok Island. This is where the sea embraces Telašćica, whose name derives from the Latin "Telagus" (meaning 3 lakes). Relax on the boat with a book or sunbathe on deck. Enjoy views of the picturesque Mediterranean landscapes along the way. Chat with the skipper if you are interested in sailing and hear all the secrets of their ancient craft.  Upon arrival at Telašćica Nature Park, enjoy some free time to swim and snorkel. Go for a stroll and give a treat to the timid donkeys. There's a donkey reserve within the park and the coastal (or Dinaric) donkey is an indigenous Croatian breed. Currently, there are 14 donkeys living in Telašćica, while the entire area abounds with flora and fauna. The park has 3 smaller bays within its wider area. Telašćica is the largest and best-protected natural harbor on the eastern coast of the Adriatic. It has 5 islets, of which the small rock slab of Taljurić is the most extraordinary. Continue to Lake Mir in the southwestern part of the park. The salt waters of the lake derive from the underground canals that connect it to the sea. Archaeological excavations made in the area indicate the place was inhabited in the earliest periods. On the return journey, go to Stene (also known as the "Devil`s Cliffs"). Marvel at the vertical cliffs that rise up to 61 meters from the sea. They spread from Mrzlovica Cape on the northwest to the slopes of Veli Vrh on the southeast.

From Zadar: Plitvice National Park Full-Day Tour

3. From Zadar: Plitvice National Park Full-Day Tour

Visit  Plitvice National Park on a full-day tour departing from Zadar. Granted UNESCO World Heritage status in 1979, Plitvice is marked on old maps as the “Devil’s Garden" and consists of 16 interconnected terraced lakes gushing over moss-covered rocks. Depart from Zadar early and drive for about 1 hour and 45 minutes before reaching Plitvice National Park, home to diverse flora and fauna, including wild boar, wolves, and even bears. Once at the national park, begin your 4-hour guided tour, visiting Upper and Lower lakes and enjoying the unspoiled nature of one of the most beautiful national parks in the world. Although you can’t swim in the protected lakes, your guide will show you the best places to explore and relax in this paradise of natural wonders. Your tour also includes an electric boat ride on Kozjak Lake. Return to Zadar at around 18:00.

From Zadar: Kornati National Park Full-Day Boat Trip

4. From Zadar: Kornati National Park Full-Day Boat Trip

Visit the jewel of the Adriatic Sea on a full-day tour to Kornati National Park, departing from Zadar. Leave in the morning and make your way to the park via boat. Enjoy breakfast as you travel to the 109 islands that make up the park.  During the tour, you will stop for 3 hours to go swimming. Then relax as you are taken on a tour around the park, checking up the dramatic karst-limestone formations that tower around you. In the middle of the day, you will also be treated to lunch. Just sit back and enjoy the view. Afterward, enjoy a visit to Telascica Nature Park and make a stop on its beach.

Zadar: Kornati and Telašćica National Parks Boat Trip

5. Zadar: Kornati and Telašćica National Parks Boat Trip

Embark on an inclusive boat trip with food and time for swimming. Combine your boat journey up the coast with exploring the National Parks at your leisure. Get ready for a sea adventure on the Croatian coast. Begin the tour at 8:15 AM as you board your ship. Immediately be spoiled with some delicious local Rakija and ham and cheese sandwiches for breakfast. Meet your tour guide and hear fascinating stories. Between 11:30 AM and 1:15 PM, enjoy free time to explore the Natural Park Telašćica on your own. Discover the views of the magnificent cliffs and bathe in the salt waters of Lake Mir. Also, go for a swim either in the sea or the lake. Admire the scenic views of the next stop, the Kornati National Park and Suha Punta Bay, before a delicious lunch of grilled meat, fish, and salad with Croatian wine. Enjoy some juicy watermelon to help you stay hydrated on the journey back, arriving back at the pier at 18:00 PM.

Zadar Canal 4-Hour Sailing Trip

6. Zadar Canal 4-Hour Sailing Trip

Explore the waterways of the Zadar Canal sea passage between Zadar and the island of Ugljan, and experience the stunning seascapes and rich underwater world of the Adriatic Sea. Encounter numerous islets spread all over the canal, each one with its own unique story. Depart from Zadar in the morning (09:00 AM - 01:00 PM) or afternoon (02:00 PM - 06:00 PM) and dock in the small island village of Preko. Take a walk around the small port or have a coffee in one of the beach bars. Go for a swim or visit the nearby islet and green oasis of Galevac, with its 14th-century monastery.  Then, sail towards a secluded bay and relax and enjoy the clear waters of the Adriatic Sea. Make your way back to Zadar and learn some basic sailing techniques from your skipper. 

From Zadar: Plitvice Lakes National Park Tour

7. From Zadar: Plitvice Lakes National Park Tour

Depart Zadar at 08:30, and journey towards Plitviče Lakes National Park. Drive through the hinterland of the picturesque Lika region for about 2.5 hours, and then enter the park for the start of your 2-hour guided tour. Marvel at the natural scenery of the Upper Lakes area, where 12 of the 16 lakes of Plitvice can be found. Cross Kozjak Lake by boat to experience the largest and deepest of the lakes from a different perspective. Belonging to the Upper Lakes group, Kozjak Lake is the result of 2 smaller lakes merging into one and is the only navigable lake in Plitviče Lakes National Park. Glide across the serene waters, where the travertine Stephanie`s island was named by the Crown Princess Stéphanie of Belgium (wife of Crown Prince Rudolf of Austria) after a visit in 1888.  Admire the idyllic scenery of the Lower Lakes region, characterized by small waterfalls, turquoise waters and surrounding greenery. Nearby lies the underground cave of Šupljara, where the conditions have given rise to an abundance of unusual cave fauna. Go to the Great Waterfall within the Lower Lakes and see the water cascade from a height of 78 meters. Then, enjoy 1.5 hours of free time to explore the park on your own and have lunch before the return journey to Zadar at 16:00. 

Zrmanja: Full-Day Canoe or Kayak Trip in Kaštel Žegarski

8. Zrmanja: Full-Day Canoe or Kayak Trip in Kaštel Žegarski

Zrmanja and Krupa are among the most beautiful rivers in Europe: perfectly clear warm water, spectacular canyon with magnificent waterfalls. They are easy and safe enough for beginner canoeists but their scenery makes them also very exciting. You will see many fish and birds and explore typical karst phenomenon – living travertine waterfalls. The trip begins in Kastel Zegarski, only one hour drive from Zadar. You will quickly learn how to handle sit-on-top kayaks as you slowly enter the canyon. After the first hour of paddling down easy rapids you will – if time and weather permit – visit beautiful Krupa waterfalls and swim under them. More waterfalls and rapids wait for you as you continue down Zrmanja towards Muskovci where the trip ends. At the end of the trip optionally you can enjoy refreshments at a nearby restaurant or take a picnic on your own. Itinerary: 10:00 AM - Arrival to destination – Kastel Zegarski village 10:30 AM - Preparing for the trip and safety instructions provided by the trip leader 11:00 AM - Trip starts 12:30 PM - Continuing down the river Zrmanja 3:00 PM - Finish at Muskovci village 3:30 PM - Optional refreshments 4:00 PM - Departure

From Zadar: Krka National Park and Waterfalls Day Trip

9. From Zadar: Krka National Park and Waterfalls Day Trip

Depart Zadar and journey to Krka National Park, famous for the limestone formations of dissolved calcium bicarbonate in the water of the Krka River and waterfalls. Upon arrival, take a 1.5-hour tour of the park with a licensed guide to see some of the waterfalls, such as the beautiful cascades of Skradinski buk. Admire the travertine and stone walls of the historical water mills of Šibenik-Knin County, where wheat was milled for various towns in ‎Dalmatia in historical times. Get 2 hours of free time for lunch at a restaurant and to go for a walk or swim under the cascades of the biggest waterfall in the park. Return to Zadar via the historical town of Šibenik, where the kings of Croatia were crowned. Avail of 1-hour of free time to discover the UNESCO World Heritage monument of the Cathedral of St. James, stroll the promenade to get stunning views of the Adriatic Sea or just enjoy a coffee at one of the numerous bars.   

Sakarun Beach Full-Day Guided Tour from Zadar

10. Sakarun Beach Full-Day Guided Tour from Zadar

Board a boat in the Old Town and sail to the most beautiful islands of the Zadar archipelago on this 10-hour trip. Enjoy the panorama of one of the most stunning coasts in the world and take in views of the islands of Tri sestrice, Sestrunj and Molat. Have breakfast on the boat and enjoy unlimited water. Once you reach Dugi Otok, home to Saharun Beach, you will disembark in the village of Bozava. From there, a bus will take you to your final destination. You’ll be given a box lunch to take the beach, where you can spend time enjoying Saharun. The beach is protected as a significant natural area of the Croatian ecological network.

Frequently asked questions about Zadar

What top attractions are a must-see in Zadar?

Planning Your Visit

  • When to go?

    If you can, arrive at either end of the tourism season – May/June or September/October – to experience perfect seaside weather without the crowds that come in the peak months.

  • How many days?

    Zadar has a wide variety of attractions, including an archipelago that's perfect for island-hopping! You could complete your city sightseeing in a weekend, but we recommend taking it slow and relaxing into Mediterranean life. If you do choose to explore the islands, allow at least a week.

Good to know

  • Language
    Croatian
  • Currency
    Croatian Kuna (kn)
  • Time Zone
    UTC (+01:00)
  • Country Code
    +385
  • Best time to visit
    Go in late spring or early fall for the best of all worlds – warm weather, better prices, less crowds!

Other Sightseeing Options in Zadar

Want to discover all there is to do in Zadar? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Zadar

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 2,706 reviews

Tour was authentic, educational and relaxing. Guide was amazing. He's a natural story teller who engages with the group and local people. Highly recommend the walking tour!

Too bad not enough to cover once there and even bringing our own parasol failed to plant it beach of large stones

fantastic tour. Sime is knowledgeable, friendly and funny. a great way to familiarise yourself with zadar.

We had a great time and couldn't have asked for a friendlier skipper!

Highly recommended my personally best day trip in Croatia