Set in a commanding position overlooking the Adriatic, the city
of Zadar boasts an exceptional cultural heritage and a myriad of
historic monuments and buildings. Its long history can be traced
back to about the 2nd century BC, when Roman forces began to take
the region's settlements. By 48BC the city was officially a colony
of Roman citizens - and during this period Zadar acquired its
forum, along with much of its current structure and street
In the 6th century AD Zadar passed into the Byzantine Empire.
Although it was now ruled by the Venetians, within a century Zadar
became the capital of Byzantine Dalmatia. The city has always
thrived on sea trade and fishing, and this new power only served to
enhance its wealth further. The city's university was established
during this period, along with many of the historic buildings that
can be seen today.
With the fall of the Byzantine Empire in the late 18th century,
Zadar was ruled by both France and Austria in quick succession. The
Italians took control in 1918, and the city became part of
Yugoslavia after the Second World War. In 1991, the city finally
became part of the modern Croatia following a siege. Now, with such
a rich and chequered history, the wide variety of cultural
influences - and surviving architecture from most periods of its
past - has made Zadar a true delight to discover, and as a result
it attracts thousands of visitors each year.