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If you’re traveling in Croatia, you may find yourself asking the same question we did: “Is Zadar worth visiting?”

It’s the 5th biggest city in the country and is located along the coast between Zagreb and Split.

For travelers in the capital city that want to visit the beach, it’s easier and cheaper to visit than the more popular towns of Split and Dubrovnik (of Game of Thrones fame).

Daniel and I had a three day weekend to fill and knew we had to see the famous Croatian coast during our five week stay in the country. We went to Zadar, Croatia and discovered some good and some bad aspects to this beach-side getaway.

The good: The old town was beautiful and the nearby islands are nice.

The bad: The beaches in Zadar are nothing special and Zadar is expensive.

All in all, though, I recommend a trip to Zadar for anyone who wants to stick close to Zagreb (personally, I hate long bus rides) and backpackers or digital nomads who are on a budget as well.

Our three day weekend definitely drained the wallet so I can’t even imagine what our bank account would look like if we went to Split or Dubrovnik instead.

So, is Zadar worth visiting?

Everyones’ travel style is different so that’s a question only you can answer. Check out these 10 photos of Zadar beaches, the Old Town, nearby islands, and more to help you decide!


Zadar marina

Zadar Marina in the Old Town


Zadar old town in Croatia

Cobblestone Streets in Zadar Old Town


view of Zadar old town from the tower

The View from the Zadar Church Tower


night time in the old town of Zadar

Zadar Old Town at Night


view form the ferry ride to Ugljan Island

View of Preko on the Zadar Ferry Ride to Ugljan Island


swimming in Ugljan, Croatia

Swimming on Ugljan Island near Zadar


swimming in Ugljan, Croatia

Swimming on Ugljan Island near Zadar


islands in Zadar

Taking the Ferry Back to Zadar at Dusk


swimming in Zadar, Croatia

Watching Swimmers Jump From the Zadar Diving Platforms near Zadar Beach


Zadar old town bridge at night

Nighttime in Old Zadar


So, what do you think? Is Zadar worth visiting?

This city may not be as popular as Split or Dubrovnik, but it’s also less expensive and less crowded.

Plus, there are some amazing day trips to nearby Zrce beach, the Kornati Islands, Krka National Park, Ugljan Island and more for adventurers on a budget.

Hopefully, this Zadar photo diary helps you make a decision on whether or not Zadar, Croatia is the right beach town for you, and I hope you enjoy your trip!

Ready to go? Use Skyscanner to find the cheapest flights to Zadar and then explore accommodation like unique stays on Airbnb or the top-rated hotels on to plan the perfect night, weekend, or long-term stay in the city.


This article is part of the Zadar Series. Read the rest below:

How to Get from Zagreb to Zadar

3 Best Cheap Restaurants in Zadar

How to Take a Day Trip from Zadar to Ugljan Island

Then, explore the complete Croatia series for more to see, do, eat, drink, and discover in the country.


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Is Zadar, Croatia worth visiting? Pinterest pin


I’ve been traveling full-time for three years, these are the resources that make it happen:

➤ I exclusively use Airbnb for savings and security on long-term stays in furnished apartments.

➤ I use for short-term stays in hostels and hotels on weekend trips.

Skyscanner and the Scott's Cheap Flights newsletter help me find and book cheap flights and mistake fares.

Upwork allowed me to take the leap to travel full-time because they make it so easy to find freelance clients in any field. 

➤ The Superstar Blogging Travel Writing Course launched my travel writing career and helped me become a contributor at sites like Cincinnati Refined and International Living, and even get published in the Boston Globe.

➤ Finally, I love hosting my travel blog on SiteGround because they have helpful and responsive customer service and I love MediaVine and CJ for helping me make a living doing what I love!


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