About Sibenik

Sibenik is located in central Dalmatia where the river Krka (one of the most beautiful Karst rivers in Croatia) flows into the Adriatic Sea. It is a historic town of Croatia. Unlike other cities along the Adriatic coast, which were established by Greeks, Illyrians and Romans, Sibenik was founded by Slavs in 11th century. It was mentioned for the first time under its present name in 1066 in a Charter of the Croatian King Petar Kresimir IV and, for a period of time, it was a seat of this Croatian King.

Today Sibenik is an administrative-political, economic and socio-cultural center of Middle Dalmatia with population of approximately 51 550. Also, it is a very popular touristic destination because of its cultural heritage (the Cathedral of St. James built from 1431 and 1536 is on the UNESCO World Heritage list), natural beauties (National parks Kornati and Krka) and well known Mediterranean cuisine. Sibenik is a home town of Drazen Petrovic (NBA basketball player), Faust Vrancic (parachute inventor), Goran Visnjic (Hollywood actor) and Maksim Mrvica (world known piano player).

The county of Sibenik has 242 islands, islets and rocks. Most of this archipelago lies in the north-west part of Sibenik’s waters and is very indented, bare and sparsely inhabited. The most numerous group of islands are the National park Kornati. The Kornati archipelago consists of 150 islands in a sea area of about 320 km², making it the densest archipelago in the Mediterranean Sea, widely known for their bizarre shapes and luxurious and magnificent landscapes. Another national park that is near Sibenik is well known Krka National Park, similar to the Plitvice Lakes National Park, renowned for its many waterfalls, flora, fauna, and historical and archaeological remains.

Cultural heritage:

St. Jacob’s cathedral – The St. Jacob’s, the cathedral of Sibenik, built for over a century, is a testimony of persistency, sacrifice and belief of the generations of inhabitants of Sibenik. By many things it is unique not only in the Croatian architecture, but in the European as well: it is entirely built of stone, no other material being used; it is unique by the brave structure of stone slabs and ribs, with no binding material; it is also unique among renaissance churches by its trefoil front facade; finally, it is unique by the harmony of its architecture and the row of 71 realistic sculptural portraits around the apses. Documents preserved from the time of building of the cathedral evidence contributions from the entire community to its building, but from many individuals as well, including large number of domestic stone-dressers, builders and artisans. The most important among them is Juraj Matejev Dalmatinac, who came from Zadar and who the town of Sibenik commissioned in 1441 to take over the job of the proto-master of the cathedral of Sibenik. The cathedral and the nearby renaissance town hall, other churches, palaces, and the Prince’s Palace presently housing the County Museum, make probably the most beautiful town square of the Croatian urban heritage. The Cathedral is on UNESCO World Heritage list.

The fortress of St. Michael – The Fortress of St. Michael is located at a height of 70m above the sea behind the old city agglomeration. It was built, in the period from the 15th to 17th century, out of dressed white stone. Through archeological research, remains of a culture from the prehistoric Iron Era have been found, which proves that the fortress was built by Croats in the place that was once know as the station of the old Illyrians. There are two entrances to the fortress; one is located at the wall towards the old cemetery and the other on the north side.

The Fortress of St. Nicholas – The Fortress of St. Nicholas is located at the entrance to the St. Anthony Channel and it was built in the middle of the 16th century for defense from Turkish attacks from the sea. It was built according to the designs of the Venetian military builder Michiele Sammichella. The Fortress of St. Nicholas (having a triangle shape) is one of the strongest forts on our coast.

The Fortress of St. John – The Fortress of St. John is located on a hill 115m high on the northern side of the historic city core. It was raised in 1646 according to the project of the Venetian military engineer Antonio Leni. A year later, in 1647, heavy battles were being held with the army of the Turkish pasha Tekeli who wanted to take over the fortress in order to rule the city.