In this destination guide we visit Trogir, a beautiful, tranquil city on the Dalmatian coast of Croatia just a few miles away from Split.
A visit to Trogir
Having checked in at Palace Derossi in Trogir it was time to explore the sights of this Croatian city.
Trogir is often visited by tourists as an easy day trip from Split as the city is located just a few miles away and can easily be reached by bus.
However, I decided to do the exact opposite during my trip.
As accommodation is cheaper in Trogir and the city is less touristy than Split, I thought it would make for the perfect place to base myself on the Dalmatian coast.
I could then just do a day trip to Split instead and would be able to explore the lovely countryside and beaches around Trogir.
Entering the old town
As you can easily see from the picture above, the old town of Trogir is located on a small island in the bay.
Most of the modern-day city of Trogir is located on the Croatian mainland north of the old town, while another island called Čiovo is located south of it.
Both Trogir’s bus station as well as the main parking lots for visitors who arrive by car are located on the mainland just a stone throw away from the old town bridge.
To reach the old town, all you need to do is simply crossing the bridge over the small canal and you will find yourself standing in front of the North Gate.
Walk towards the waterfront
Instead of going directly through the North Gate, I however walked a bit further along the edge of the old town.
The street on the northern edge of the old town is lined with several cafés, which seemed to be especially popular with the locals to linger for a while over a coffee.
After a couple of hundred feet I turned left into the old town proper and didn’t stop until I hit the waterfront.
Exploring the waterfront
At the southern edge of the old town you can find the Trogirska Riva – Trogir’s waterfront promenade.
The palm-lined promenade is a gorgeous place to take a stroll no matter the time of the day.
From the waterfront promenade you have some excellent views over the island of Čiovo on the opposite side of the bay, which is linked to the old town by a bridge at the far end of the Riva.
There are plenty of appealing restaurants on Trogir’s waterfront promenade where you can have a quality meal with a view.
I settled on a restaurant called Mirkec, where I had a lovely seafood risotto and some local white wine.
Old town square
After an excellent lunch, it was time to explore Trogir a bit more and to visit some of the main sights in the city.
As the old town of Trogir has been inscribed by UNESCO on its World Heritage List, there are naturally quite a few interesting historical sights to visit.
I entered the old town again through one of the gates on the waterfront promenade and walked to Trg Ivana Pavla II (John Paul II Square).
This square, on which some of Trogir’s main historical sights are located, was certainly popular as well with locals enjoying a coffee or drink.
The main sight on John Paul II Square – and arguably the biggest landmark in the entire city of Trogir – is the cathedral.
Called the Cathedral of Saint Lawrence (Katedrala Sveti Lovre) this magnificent church was built in the 13th century.
The cathedral has a mixture of Gothic and Romanesque design elements and its 47-metre high bell tower can be seen from all over town.
If you visit Trogir’s cathedral, make sure you don’t miss the magnificent Chapel of Saint John of Trogir (Kapela Svetog Ivana Trogiranina) as it’s one of the most beautiful early Renaissance monuments in Europe.
Other old town sights
There are a couple of other noteworthy sights around the central old town square.
On the south side of the square you can find the 15th century city Loggia with its magnificent clock tower.
In the past, the Loggia was used by the Trogir townsfolk as a communal meeting place, courtroom and place where official events were held such as the signing of contracts.
On the southern wall of the Loggia you can find a relief depicting Petar Berislavić, a ‘Ban’ (viceroy) born in Trogir who led the Croatians to important victories against the Ottomans in the early 16h century.
You can also see some pictures of locals who died fighting the Serbs in the Croatian War of Independence between 1991 and 1995.
Other beautiful buildings surrounding the square are the Cipiko Palace with its fine Venetian architecture and the Rector’s Palace, which is used as Trogir’s City Hall.
The people in the Croatian region of Dalmatia love their coffee and make a true art out of drinking it.
It’s the local custom to sit down for ages over a single cup of coffee while reading all the local newspapers that are provided by the bar, catching up with friends or acquaintances or simply enjoying the surroundings.
There are some great cafés throughout Trogir where you can drink your coffee like a true Dalmatian person.
The bars right next to the bridge linking the mainland to the old town are fantastic and among the cheaper places in Trogir to get a coffee or drink.
However, given that coffee is of such importance to local life in Dalmatia you still won’t pay much at all for your cup when seated on the main square, making this a great place as well to sit down for a while.
There was still one part of Trogir’s old town left which I had to visit.
The western part of the old town has a different feeling altogether compared to the rest of the island as it is more residential and there are less tourists around.
In this part there are also a couple of interesting sights to see, such as the Church of Saint Michael and its beautiful belfry.
The main sight in this part of Trogir is however Kamerlengo Castle.
Although there isn’t much to see inside the castle itself, you have commanding views over Trogir and the bay from the ramparts and towers.
From the western tip of the island I walked back along the waterfront promenade to the Saint Dominic Church and Monastery from where I started my tour around Trogir.
Of course, visiting a seaside city is as much about simply enjoying the surroundings as it is about sightseeing.
I therefore couldn’t resist buying some ice cream and enjoying it on a sunny spot on the waterfront.
For the best possible view over Trogir you should simply cross the bridge from the old town to the island of Čiovo.
If you walk a bit further along the Čiovo waterfront you will have a postcard-perfect view over the bay and the skyline of Trogir’s old town.
There are also several appealing local cafés in this part of the city where you can enjoy a cold beer and some fine views.
While I was walking across the Čiovo waterfront and admiring the fine views, multiple church bells started to ring at the same time.
The blue skies, calm sea water, fantastic backdrop of beautiful Trogir and the sound of the church bells certainly made for a memorable holiday moment.
Sunsets in Croatia can be magical and you should definitely try to view it.
You will have the best sunset views from Kamerlengo Castle at the western tip of the old town island, although I was unfortunately too late to catch it as I lingered around a bit too long at the café over a couple of beers.
I therefore admired the twilight skies over Trogir from the ramshackle wooden jetties at the parking lot on the mainland.
As I didn’t feel like dining out, I decided to go for some fast food for dinner.
Right at the bridge which links the mainland to Trogir’s old town you will find a fast food stall where you can get some cheap and delicious cevapi (minced meat sausages).
Even when you have already explored the old town during daylight hours, I can highly recommend to take another stroll when darkness has fallen.
There is just something special about exploring an old town like Trogir at night as the little bit of light reflects so beautifully on the cobblestone streets and stone mansions.
Although a night walk through Trogir is not as mesmerising as wandering around the empty late night streets of Dubrovnik, it still makes for a fun activity.
If you wake up early enough you should certainly visit Trogir’s fruits and vegetables market as well.
Located right next to the old town bridge and bus station, this market gives you a nice insight into local life and it’s also a great opportunity to buy some fresh, organic produce if you stay in a self-catering apartment.
Trogir is the natural base from where you can set out to explore Čiovo Island and its beaches and scenic spots.
There are several shops in Trogir from where you can rent a bicycle, scooter or motorbike to get you around Čiovo.
In the next chapter of this trip report, I will show how you can rent a bike in Trogir and guide you around some of the prettiest spots and beaches of Čiovo.
Trogir is one of Croatia’s most evocative cities and makes for a wonderful holiday spot.
The old town of Trogir is inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List and has plenty of interesting historical sights to admire and visit.
However, Trogir is far more than just a beautiful old town as it also is a great destination for those who just want to relax at the seaside over a drink and a great meal.
With Split just a short drive away and the island of Čiovo having plenty of beaches and scenic spots, you certainly won’t get bored if you stay for a couple of days in Trogir.
I certainly loved my visit to Trogir and would love to come back to this magnificent seaside city one day.
Trip report index
This article is part of the ‘Across Europe by Train: Interrail in the Age of Corona‘ trip report, which consists of the following chapters:
1. Review: LOT Polish Airlines Economy Class Bucharest to Warsaw (Embraer ERJ-175)
2. Walking Through an Empty Warsaw in Corona Lockdown
3. Review: Four Points by Sheraton Warsaw Mokotow
4. Review: LOT Polish Airlines Economy Class Warsaw to Zurich (Boeing 737 MAX)
5. A Stopover Walk Through the Old Town of Zurich
6. Review: Railjet Train Zurich to Feldkirch
7. An Evening in Friendly Little Feldkirch
8. Review: Nightjet Train Feldkirch to Graz
9. A Short Walk Along the Sights of Graz
10. Review: Emona EuroCity Train Vienna – Ljubljana – Trieste
11. Zidani Most: Europe’s Most Picturesque Train Station
12. Review: Ljubljana to Zagreb by EuroCity Train EC 1211 ‘Sava’
13. Flying With Trade Air on a Let L-410 Turbolet Across Croatia
14. Review: Palace Derossi, Trogir, Croatia
15. A Visit to the Tranquil Island City of Trogir, Croatia (current chapter)
16. Cycling on Ciovo: A Trogir Day Trip by Bike
17. Split: Croatia’s Bustling Seaside City Full of History
18. Review: Croatian Railways ICN Train Split to Zagreb
19. Review: Esplanade Hotel, Zagreb, Croatia
20. Zagreb: A Guide to Croatia’s Underrated Capital City
21. Review: EuroCity Train “Croatia” Zagreb to Vienna
22. Review: Dacia Night Train Vienna to Bucharest