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CROATIA’S ATTRACTIONS: 13 Attractions You Should See When You are in Trogir!

Trogir's Waterfront

The old town of Trogir is one of the seven cultural heritages in Croatia that are under the auspices of the UNESCO World Heritage. This picturesque town on the Adriatic coast, with about 13,000 inhabitants, for centuries with the beauty of its stone buildings delighted many: travel writers, scientists and writers, among others. Trogir’s history dates back to its founding in the late 3rd or early 2nd century BC. The Greeks from their parent Issa founded a trading colony and gave it the name Tragurion. Through the turbulent history, this town was ruled by the Romans, Franks, Byzantines, Venetians, Austrians, Hungarians, Italians and, of course, the Croatian rulers. The beginnings of tourism development in Trogir were recorded in the 30-ies of the last century by arrival of guests from the Czech Republic.

If you want to see the old core of Trogir and the surrounding area from a bigger height, make sure to climb the bell tower of the St. Lawrence cathedral and the Kamerlengo and St. Mark fortresses. The old core is a relatively small area and can be seen in one day, however, in order to fully enjoy natural beauties, cultural and historical values and culinary delights, I recommend a few days more.



What to see in Trogir?


#1     Town Gate – Northern

It was built in the 17th century, and on the gate’s top the statue of the town’s patron, the Blessed John of Trogir, stands, work of Bonino from Milan (15th c.). The town walls have been preserved only in a few places: near the town gate, on the western and eastern sides of the core and to the north of the church of Our Lady of Mount Carmel.


#2     St. Lawrence Cathedral

The St. Lawrence Cathedral, among the monuments of Trogir, occupies a prominent place, in whose area valuable works of art are placed. The church’s construction began in the 13th and was completed in the 17th century. It is worth climbing to the top of the bell tower 47 meters high from where you will be able to enjoy the view. The last floor of the bell tower was built for almost two centuries. Be sure to visit the Radovan’s Portal from the year 1240. The Master Radovan is the most prominent medieval Croatian sculptor, and some scientists believe that his hand is recognized also on the St. Mark’s Basilica in Venice.

In the center of the church, there is a large wooden candleholder in the shape of a Greek cross from the 15th century. It was ordered by the Trogirians on the model of the equal one in the St. Mark’s church in Venice. Make sure to visit also the chapel of the Blessed John from the 15th century according to a draft of Nicholas of Florence, which is located within the cathedral.


#3     Cipiko Palace

The Cipiko Palace is certainly one of the most beautiful preserved palaces in the town that emerged by connecting of older Romanesque buildings. It consists of two parts, large and small, which once were connected by a bridge across the street. Tradition says that after the Battle of Lepanto in 1571 Alviz Cipiko in the atrium of his palace, as a war trophy, exhibited the figurehead of the Turkish galley under the command of the Captain Ali – a rooster. You can see the casting of the rooster’s original in the nearby Museum of the town of Trogir.

Of other palaces, worth seeing are Lucić palace and Andreis palace.


#4     Loggia

The Loggia is also situated on the John Paul II Square opposite the cathedral. It was mentioned in the year 1311 and once served as a public courtroom. For the execution of a sentence, according to tradition, there was a pillory whose wooden part fell to ruins, and only chains alongside the town clock’s tower remained. In front of the Justice relief made by Nicholas of Florence there is a Judges’ table. Here only men were tried. Women were tried in the neighboring St. Mary’s church, and noblewomen in private homes.


#5     St. Sebastian’s Church – Town Clock

It is located on the John Paul II Square opposite the St. Lawrence’s cathedral. On the church you will notice the town clock, and it was built in the late 15th century as a vow of the town defended from the plague by this saint’s mediation. The facade is from the Renaissance and is work of Nicholas of Florence’s workshop. Today, the church area is arranged in memory of Croatian soldiers in the Homeland War.


#6     Town Hall (Municipal Palace, Rector’s Palace)

The Town Hall was a place of government and life of the rector, and today only of the mayor’s governing. To this day, it has retained the same purpose. It is located beside the St. Lawrence’s cathedral and is the dominant building on the beautiful square. Inside it, also the Trogir Tourist Board is located. At the end of the 19th century it was rebuilt, which brought back its renaissance look. The inner courtyard has the Gothic style characteristics and a well’s crown and staircase. Throughout history, a part of the first floor was used as a theater. Similarly to the Hvar theater, it had an orchestra and lodges with the coats of arms of noble families that used them. On the ground floor, there was a prison.


#7     St. John the Baptist’s Church

It was built in the 13th century and was once part of the male Benedictine monastery. The same architectural signs engraved on its walls connect it with the cathedral. The church is today a picture gallery, collection of religious art. Paintings by Blaise George of Trogir, Quirizio de Murano, Paolo Veneziano’s school, Antonio Marinetti Il Chioggotta and Jacopo Bellini’s workshop are exhibited in it. Among the other churches, worth visiting are the Our Lady of Mount Carmel church, All Saints’ church, St. Michael’s church and St. Peter’s church.


#8     Town Gate – Southern

Alongside the town walls, next to the gate (marine), there is a small lodge, which according to tradition served as a shelter to belated passengers because the gate was closed every night at midnight. The gate dates from 1593.


#9     Waterfront

The feature of any city or town on the Adriatic is the waterfront. It is usually a place of socializing, walking, enjoying the beautiful weather or just – resting. The Trogir waterfront, adorned with palm trees, stone buildings of the past and tourist traditional wooden boats, is one of the most beautiful on the Adriatic. A beautiful view to the waterfront and ideal place for photographing stretches from the nearby Čiovo bridge that connects Trogir and the Čiovo island.


#10     School building

At the site of the Health Office, when arranging the waterfront in the early 20th century, new buildings were built. One of them is the school building built in 1909, which still today has the same purpose.


#11     St. Dominic’s Church and Monastery

The Dominican friars live hear even nowadays. The church’s construction began in the early 14th century and during the 15th century a Gothic-style cloister was built. The church’s particularity is the tomb of the Sobota family, whose construction in 1469 was commissioned by Katarina Sobota after her husband’s and son’s agonizing death, by which the aristocratic lineage extinguished. This monument’s master is Nicholas of Florence.


#12     Kamerlengo Fortress

Next to the Kamerlengo fortress, you will see a tower, which used to be called the tower of the chain. It was built by the Genovese in the late 14th century and subsequently extended and expanded in height. In the extension, the Kamerlengo fortress from the 15th century was built. It was named after kamerlengo (camerarius) clerk-treasurer who led finances in agreement with the rector. I recommend climbing to the Camerlengo from which a beautiful view to the old town spreads.


#13     St. Mark’s Fortress

Across the Kamerlengo, to the north, another fortress is worth seeing, but smaller: the St. Mark’s fortress. It was built in the time of Venice in the 15th century. In the history, fortresses were mainly used as warehouses, and this one for a certain period was a public slaughterhouse.




About the author

Stjepan Misulic

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