An ancient city established more than a thousand years ago, Šibenik sits around a natural port and was once a prosperous mercantile hub at the heart of the salt trade in the Adriatic. Today, the city walls, forts, and waterfront promenade offer a glimpse of another time. It’s home to one of the region’s most important and largest Gothic-Renaissance cathedrals, St. James as well as being a popular base for exploring Krka National Park. While its long played second fiddle to its more famous neighbours, Zadar and Split, many feel it’s just as enjoyable with the alleyways and stone steps in the Old Town leading to all sorts of surprises. While the Cathedral of St. James is unmissable with its golden globe, appearing in the distance from many vantage points, there are atmospheric squares and historic churches around nearly every corner.
Explore the full length of the magnificent Croatian coast from Dubrovnik to Opatija. Enjoy a highly personalised service, delicious onboard meals and a selection of guided tours and gastronomic experiences. Visit the chic and ever-popular southern Dalmatian islands and explore the lush unspoilt Kvarner islands.
Dubrovnik - Slano/Ston - Mljet National Park - Korcula Island - Hvar Island - Vis Island - Krka National Park - Sibenik - Split
A unique hand-crafted ‘Game of Thrones’ cruise, visiting the filming locations of this magical world. Learn about the history of each setting with your Game of Thrones expert. Experience this unique Game of Thrones-inspired voyage between magnificent Dubrovnik and Split.
Book this stunning 7 night Split and Dubrovnik twin centre holiday and explore two beautiful historic cities and the Adriatic coast.
Visit Split and explore the wonderfully historic and lively city of Split with its UNESCO listed Diocletian’s Palace and stunning architecture. The islands of Hvar and Brac are ideal day trips from Split.
Discover the beautiful UNESCO listed city of Dubrovnik with its medieval city walls, baroque themed architecture and stunning old town.
3 nights in Split and 4 nights in charming Hvar, staying in 4-star hotels. This itinerary includes UK flights, private transfers, an optional tour of Krka National Park and an optional memorable speedboat tour from Hvar.
There are few private accommodations in Šibenik, with most rooms located at large resorts outside of the city, although there are several hostels for comfortable, simple accommodation near major attractions. Still, the majority of visitors tend to base themselves along the coast and explore the Old Town on day trips. You can get the most out of your visit with a stay in one of the villages nearby like Vodice which provide easy access to the city as well as some of the best beaches along the eastern shores of the Adriatic.
Kornati National Park is a nautical paradise that is comprised of 89 islands, islets and reefs and is easily accessible on a day trip from Šibenik. Explore the scenic indented coastline and discover the hidden caves and grottos that are shielded by rugged cliffs. On your nature ramble, you can explore the breathtaking landscape, and cool off with a dip in the refreshing, crystal clear Adriatic Sea. You can also enjoy a diving or snorkelling experience.
Admire The Beautiful Architecture
Šibenik boasts an abundance of fine examples of beautiful architecture. The Cathedral of St James is considered to be one of the city’s top attractions. It took three skilled architects to design the iconic cathedral that is made entirely of stone. The interior features a spectacular decorative frieze of 71 sculptured faces of men, women and children. Dotted all over the city are other architectural examples that highlight the fusion of Gothic and Renaissance art.
Visit The Magnificent Krka National Park
Enjoy an unforgettable and exciting day trip to Krka National Park. The natural beauty spot boasts stunning waterfalls, lakes and gorges, and also features the Krka River gushing through a 200 metres deep canyon. The park’s centrepiece is the magnificent Skradinski Buk. The breathtaking waterfall is the final one of seven that you can explore. You can also enjoy a boat ride to Visovac Island, home of the Franciscan Monastery of Our Lady of Mercy.
When to visit Šibenik
The best months for good weather in Šibenik are April through October, with July and August the warmest. If sightseeing without the crowds is your goal, consider April/May or mid-September through October. For those who want a beach holiday or a mix of sightseeing and beach time, including swimming, mid-June through mid-September is best with the least crowded period in either June or September.
Natalie Our Croatia Expert
How many days do you need in Šibenik?
Šibenik’s Old Town can be explored at a leisurely pace in just a day, but you really need at least two in order to enjoy a day trip to Krka National Park nearby as it serves as a gateway to the park and its magnificent waterfalls. Much of the charm of Šibenik can be enjoyed with a stroll around its historic centre. It’s compact and doesn’t require a map but with so many enticing streets, it’s fun to get lost among them as you’re guaranteed to run into the top attractions as you go.
What is the best time to visit Šibenik’s Old Town?
With the top attraction in Šibenik being its Old Town, if you want to explore it without the crowds during the peak summer months, it’s best during the early morning hours. While it’s not nearly as busy as Dubrovnik’s Old City, you’ll avoid the heat while enjoying the opportunity to capture photos without others getting in the way. Even better is to plan your visit during the shoulder seasons, in April/May or October, when the weather will be pleasant yet the tourist hordes won’t be around.
What are the essential sites to see in Šibenik?
The No. 1 site to see in Šibenik is St. James Cathedral, the UNESCO-listed Renaissance-Gothic cathedral completed in 1536, and considered to be the finest building along the Dalmatian coast. There are four fortresses, including St. Nicholas, also a UNESCO World Heritage Site, built to guard the maritime channel into the city. Don’t miss St. Michael’s Fortress, the oldest of the four, dating back to the 11th century, dominating the city skyline. It’s worth climbing up to the battlements to take in a view of the city and nearby islands, something that’s even more impressive at sunset.
Is Šibenik worth visiting?
Šibenik is well worth your time despite it being rarely mentioned as one of Croatia’s must-visit destinations. You’re likely to come away feeling incredibly impressed, especially after experiencing one of the most beautiful squares in the entire country, home to the Cathedral of St. James, the only European cathedral built entirely out of stone. Across the square is City Hall, set within a 16th-century Renaissance building that looks as if it was taken from Venice. The view from St. Michael’s Fortress is worth your visit on its own.
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