Šibenik, a gem in the Croatian Adriatic, is situated along the mouth of Krka on the most picturesque part of the eastern Adriatic coast. As the oldest Croatian autochtonous town it was first mentioned in 1066 during the reign of the Croatian King Kresimir IV.
The rich cultural and historical heritage of the city is visible in the impressive Cathedral of sv. Jakov [St. Jacob], built by the famous architect Juraj Dalmatinac and is under UNESCO protection. Numerous churches, monasteries, palaces and four fortresses 'frame' the city, and also testify to the perseverance, renunciation and faith of generations of people of Šibenik. Šibenik is a city of culture, the host to the only International Children's Festival as well as traditional events such as Dalmatian chanson Evenings.
Near the town there are two national parks - Krka and Kornati whose fascinating landscapes take visitors breath away.
The Falcon Centre, only eight kilometres away from Šibenik, in a beautiful dense pine forest is a unique place where visitors can meet and learn about the life of falcons, and Etnoland Dalmati near the Krka National Park offers visitors the chance to learn through real life experience about the Dalmatian hinterland's past.
Built between 1431 and 1535, St. Jacob’s Cathedral witnessed important exchanges in the area of monumental art between North Italy, Dalmatia and Tuscany in the 15th and 16th centuries. Three architects - Francesco di Giacomo, George of Dalmatia and Nicholas of Florence – developed a structure fully made of stone, by using a unique technique for the cathedral’s dome. The result is a harmonious stone whole, arrangement methods and absolute harmony within the cathedral.
The Kornati archipelago consists of 140 uninhabited islands, islets and reefs comprising an area of only 70 km2. They are famous for the peculiar shapes of reefs and crags but particularly for their high cliffs. There are those who claim that the number of the smaller islands is even greater, since an old saying says: “As is the number of days in a year, so is the number of the Kornati islands”. The main island Kornat is accounted for the largest part of the park and the whole island group is named after it. Due to the dangers involved in sailing through this maze of stone and sea, there are many old lighthouses on Kornati islands, such as Blitvenica and Sestrice, which today are destinations for Robinson-Crusoes-want-to-be. The biggest admirers of Kornati are yachtsmen, who find in this area, that which they seek most: a sun soaked warren of sea and islands set in unspoilt nature.
The largest part of this amazing river’s course is the national park, which in addition to its natural phenomena abounds with cultural and historical monuments. The most outstanding of these is the Franciscan monastery on the tiny island of Visovac, set in the middle of the lake widening in the river like a precious stone. Within the monastery there is a picture gallery and a church, origins of which are traced back to the 14th century. In the middle of the canyon, upstream of the river, is an interesting Krka Orthodox monastery; while on the high ground above the river several old ruins sit. The old mills, which have been transformed into small ethnographic museums where one can see how wheat was ground in the olden days, are a popular attraction for visitors. Heritage interpreters are dressed in traditional folk costumes, which is particularly interesting and entertaining for children, who are frequent visitors of the park. However, the main attraction of Krka National Park lies in its seven waterfalls. The widest of these is Roški slap, although Skradinski buk is the biggest and most well known.
In the very center of Šibenik, only 50 meters from the Cathedral of St. Jacob, hides a plateau with an old water supply facility referred to as the 4 Wells, its entrance opposite the entrance to the Cathedral, behind high stone walls. It was used until the middle of the 20th century.
After a few decades during which it was forgotten and abandoned, conservators reconstructed all four stone well crowns, renovated the floor and gave it its former appearance. The area can receive several hundred people and is ideal as a summer stage for small concerts, shows, etc.
Etnoland Dalmati is the first theme park of its kind in Croatia, which opened its doors to visitors in mid-May of 2007. It is situated in Central Dalmatia, only 10 minutes from National Park Krka in Pakovo Selo (15 km from Šibenik). With an area of 15,000 square meters and a capacity for 500 people, it acquaints the visitors with the life of the Dalmatian hinterland as it once was.
Dubrava Hawk Training Center is a must-see for those who want to experience of touch of wilderness and adventure in the heart of the Mediterranean. They have bred various species of birds of prey for many years. The visitors can enjoy watching the hawks fly or close proximity of these skillful hunters. Numerous professionals will tend to injured or otherwise endangered birds at the bird clinic to enable them further flying.