If you’re staying in Split and have a free afternoon, Trogir is a wonderful city to visit. You might forget where you are once you set foot in this historic town known for its Venetian architecture. While there aren’t a ton of sights to see in Trogir, it’s the perfect place to have a drink along the water or grab a bite to eat in Old Town. Trogir might be tiny, but it quickly became one of my favorite stops in Croatia. Here’s what you need to know about spending an afternoon in Trogir, Croatia.
A Brief History of Trogir
The city of Trogir is situated on a small island about 17 miles west of Split. The historic city center is a UNESCO World Heritage Site due to its Venetian architecture, but there was Greek and Roman influence prior to the Venetian rule. Once Venice fell at the end of the 18th century, Trogir became part of the Habsburg Empire until 1918. During this time, Napoleon Bonaparte ruled from 1806 to 1814. The city has a colorful history which you can learn more about on a walking tour…more on that below!
How to Get to Trogir
Trogir is about a 35-minute drive from Split, but there’s a better way to get there. You’re on the Adriatic, so why not take the ferry! The Bura Line services Split to Trogir several times per day. Unfortunately, the ferry service is only during the high season. While the ferry takes a bit longer at about 1 hour each way, it’s a much more enjoyable way to travel than by taxi.
Walking Tour of Trogir
I’ve said it once and I’ll say it again…the best way to learn about a city is on a walking tour. And walking around Trogir is easy since it’s so tiny. We booked a walking tour of Trogir with Portal Tours, the same company we used for our Zagreb to Split via Plitvice Lakes tour and our walking tour in Split. This tour isn’t super popular, so we checked with the Portal Tours office in Split to find out if there was a tour happening that day. Luckily, there was! We paid for the tour at the Portal Tours office in Trogir and we were good to go.
The Kamerlengo castle and fortress was built in the mid-15th century by the Venetians for naval purposes. You can pay to visit the inside of the castle. During the summer, it’s used for open-air performances.
Cathedral of St. Lawrence
The Cathedral of St. Lawrence is a highlight of Trogir. It was built on the foundation of a cathedral that was destroyed in the 12th century. The current cathedral was finished during the 17th century. If you have the energy, climb to the top of the bell tower for the best view of Trogir.
Wander Around Old Town
Lik with Split, Trogir is best explored by wandering. Take some time to walk through the maze of streets. Grab a piece of pizza or some gelato. Bella gelato came recommended by our tour guide and did not disappoint! If you’re a photographer, you could spend an hour of so just photographing the streets and buildings of Trogir.
St. Nicholas Church and Convent
The collection at St. Nicholas Church houses a famous marble relief of Kairos dating back to the 3rd century BC. Kairos was Zeus’s youngest son and the god of luck or opportunity. Legend has it that Kairos is faster than the wind. If you can catch him by the tuft of hair on his head, you will have seized an opportunity or lucky moment. Kind of a mix between Carpe Diem (or perhaps Cardpe Diem?) and being in the right place at the right time.
Trogir is a great place to spend an afternoon with a vibe completely different than Split. In fact, it kind of reminded me of Monemvasia, Greece due to the Venetian influence. If you have extra time while staying in Split, take the ferry over to Trogir. I swear it’ll be a highlight of your time in Croatia!