Royal City of Knin

There are places and cities whose unusual beauty wins the hearts of visitors in a moment, and one of them is the City of Knin. Namely, even in the 19th century, the travel writers used to describe Knin as a magical city of indescribable beauty. And they did not make a mistake.

Naime, još u 19. stoljeću putopisci su opisivali Knin „čarobnim gradom“ koji ima takvu ljepotu koja se ne može opisati.

Actually, is it possible to experience a city surrounded by nine high and mighty mountains and beautiful lakes, which are called Sarena (Spotted Lakes) due to their marvelous colors, a city on seven clear and rich rivers, led by one of the most beautiful rivers in Europe – the River Krka.


On a hard cliff

The significance of Knin goes back to ancient times, in the midst of civilization. The earliest sites on the Mount Spas date from Neolithic.

The first Copper Age culture in the wider Dalmatian region was discovered in Knin, also on the Mount Spas. As for the Bronze Age, Spas of Knin has been considered to be the only true settlement in the entire eastern Adriatic.

Knin is one of the oldest cities in Europe. It had the municipal status even in the Ancient Age. The first mention of Knin (Ninia) as a city (poleis) occurred 7 years BC in the famous Strabon’s Geography when Knin was one of only four Delmatic cities. Only Knin and Solin (Salona) have survived up to date.

The significance of Knin was even greater during the Middle Ages. At that time, it was the capital of the Croatian Kings Svetoslav, Drzislav, Dmitar Zvonimir and Petar Svacic. Over the centuries it has been occupied by the Hungarians, Turks, Venetians, French, Austrians, Italians and Germans.


Kings home

One of the largest and oldest European fortresses, the ancient Knin fortress has been capturing the hearts of visitors quickly and easily with its mysterious beauty and enthralling them with its untold stories. A walk along the Fortress is not an ordinary one. It is a walk through time accompanied by the old walls and bastions, a walk that excites the imagination and creates an unforgettable experience.

Its building started in the 9th century. Throughout the centuries, it has been conquered, destroyed and rebuilt by the Hungarians, Turks, Venetians, French, and Austrians, as well as the Croatian medieval peers.

The Knin Fortress may be divided into five parts.
The oldest part or the oldest town is the Upper Town or Kastel Knin. It was built in the 9th century when the Croatian medieval castrum was formed. There was the seat of an old Croatian state and kings. There are also the remains of the fortress built during the dynasty of the Croatian rulers, which, for now, may only be attributed to Knin.


Historical heritage

The center of museum events in the city is the Knin Museum on the Fortress, with the permanent exhibition of ethnographic artifacts, as well as the exhibition of archeological and partly cultural-historical and geological-paleontological artifacts. The geological and paleontological collection is represented by geological samples and fossils found in the surroundings of Knin, and the artifacts found in the area of Knin from prehistoric times to the late Middle Ages are exhibited in the archaeological collection. The ethnographic collection contains furniture, household items, traditional handicrafts and folk costumes from this area.

The exhibition planned for the third Belvedere building will show historical and cultural-historical features since the city’s origins in the early Middle Ages until today. There are also memorials of famous Knin citizens, academics Hrvoje Pozar and Nikica Slavic. The Fortress is also the stand of the permanent exhibition called Storm ‘95 (Oluja ‘95), opened in 2015, which testifies of the time of pride and glory and the greatest victory in the contemporary Croatian history with its numerous documents and artifacts.


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Mountaineering and Canoeing
Knin fortress