DISCOVER DALMATIA BLOG:
Pop quiz: How many cities in the whole wide world can boast to be classified as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO?
OK you got me there, I don’t know either. Someone please google this. But, I can tell you one thing – The Historic City of Trogir sure is one of them!
My friends and I got to explore it first hand, guided by the lovely Sanda, professional archaeologist and tour guide – and my twin sister.
Above: Trogir city square, as viewed from the air
Above: Sanda and my friends in front of Northern land gate
I’m positive Sanda would know the answer to the quiz question: she answered hundreds of mine, and of my friends, as we were following her around on the Discover Trogir tour. In a couple of hours on that lovely, sunny, summer day, Sanda excitedly both told and shown us many super interesting things to know and see in Trogir: historic buildings and squares, local customs and legends, and my personal favorite: the location of the world’s best gelato! 🙂
Above, left and right: Trogir’s main square and all its cafes
Our first stop was the city’s main square: one of the most charming squares you will see in Dalmatia! The square is surrounded by impressive buildings: the Cathedral of St Lawrence, the superb St John’s Chapel and a 13th-century Romanesque masterpiece by the sculptor Radovan, Trogir’s 15th-century loggia, formally the city court and beautiful palaces of city’s noble families.
We stopped at a cafe on this square (shown on the pic above) and I can verify that their coffee is as delicious as the square is beautiful. And that’s saying something!
Above, left: Sanda in her element, while Lana and Sergei are intently listening
Above, right: On our way to see Kamerlengo castle .
Next, we navigated the narrow stone streets filled with little cafes and other stores to reach a HUGE promenade by the sea. We turned towards west to reach the great castello called Kamerlengo, built by the Venetians in the mid- 15th century as a sign of their occupation. The word kamerlengo (Italian: camerlengo) refers to the title of a Venetian administrative official (a chamberlain).
While touring the city, we were stopped in our tracks by the beautiful voices of an a capella group of singers performing traditional Dalmatian songs. Such an all-male (or all-female) group of singers are called Dalmatian klapa and are to this day an important part of Dalmatian culture. Klapa was recognised by UNESCO in 2012 when it was added to the List of Intangible Cultural Heritage. Some of their songs are so tender it brings people to tears (myself included).
Trogir truly has the most amazing architecture: Romanesque buildings from the times of Rome, intertwined with Renaissance and Baroque buildings from the Venetian period. All of us almost got tendonitis from all the picture snapping – left, right, up and down, everywhere you look was a postcard in the making!,
Sanda explained that in Venetian times, the city nobel’s lived inside the city – and often furnished their homes with the latest fashion in architecture and home decor. Trau (as the city was called under Venetians) was one of the best cities in the Balkans at the time and Venetian architecture, together with a high concentration of palaces, churches and towers on such a small island, is what put Trogir on the UNESCO list of World Heritage Sites in 1997.
Above, left: Sanda and Alex, deep in conversation
Right: A detail from the city nobel’s family house (I mean, palace!)
Below: A decorative door frame from the city nobel’s family palace
Our tour was approaching its end, and we were approaching a very hard decision: which of the many delightful little konoba’s (local restaurants) to choose to have our lunch in? Two local specialities are Trogir’s pašticada and Trogir’s rafijol.
They were all so cute, and charming, and wonderfully inviting – so trust me, this was not an easy decision to reach.
… but someone’s gotta do the hard work, right? 😉
Thanks for reading – and please don’t hesitate to contact www.discoverdalmatia.com to start planning your Croatian adventure!