Church of St. Donatus Zadar

Church of St. Donatus Zadar church of st donatus zadar via vacationsThe Church of St. Donatus is a 9th-century Church that has been constructed by Donatus of Zadar. Donatus began the construction in the northeastern part of the Roman forum. The Church was initially called the Church of the Holy Trinity, however, it was renamed in Donatus’ honor to the Church of St. Donatus in the 15th century. Being the oldest pre-Romanesque building in all of Croatia it is highly regarded both in Croatia and around the world. Over the years it became a symbol of Zadar and the first thing that comes to mind when you think of the city.

Church of St. Donatus Zadar church of st donatus zadar via vacationsBeing a diplomat for Dalmatian cities to the court of Charles the Great – along with being a bishop of Zadar – Donatus was under influence of the architecture that he saw during his trips to Charles’ court. This is why his Church in Zadar shares a lot of the features with some of the other Charlemagne’s chapels, most notably with what is now the Cathedral in Aachen. The architecture of that time is represented by the circular floor plan and large domes, which were implemented in the Church of St. Donatus.

Church of St. Donatus Zadar church of st donatus zadar via vacationsThe design is rather simple and primitive, which is another staple of that time period in sacral architecture. Other notable features include its height which is 27 meters, three radially positioned apses and an ambulatory that is located around the central area of the Church. Although it remained mostly unchanged compared to his initial shape and form it is missing its southern annex that was destroyed in 1930 and its original floor tiles were removed. The tiles were removed so that the antic stones of the old Roman forum would be visible.

During its past, the Church of St. Donatus has been used for various purposes, ranging from being used as a warehouse during the Venetian and French occupations to a Museum during Yugoslavia and now it is used as a concert venue for the annual Musical Evenings in St. Donatus. It was decided that the concerts would take place inside the Church because of the terrific acoustics and impressive interior.

The ticket prices for the Church are the following:

  • 20kunas (approx. 3€ or 3$) for children over the age of ten and adults).
  • 12kunas (approx. 1.5€ or 1.7$) per person for organized groups of students, children, and retirees.
  • 15kunas (approx. 2€ or 2$) per person for other organized groups.
  • Free for children under the age of 10 and handicapped people.

Groups are 10 or more people.

Working hours of the Church are the following:

  • Closed from 1st of January until 31st of March unless otherwise noted.
  • 1st of April until 31st of May – open from 9 AM until 5 PM, Monday through Sunday.
  • 1st of June until 30th of June – open from 9 AM to 9 PM, Monday through Sunday.
  • 1st of July until 31st of August – open from 9 AM until 9 PM, Monday through Sunday.
  • 1st of June until 30th of June – open from 9 AM to 9 PM, Monday through Sunday.
  • 1st of October until 31st of October – open from 9 AM until 5 PM, Monday through Sunday.
  • 1st of November until 31st of December – closed unless otherwise noted.

Groups can ask for permissions to enter the Church even outside of the working hours. For such and other group arrangements you should contact the Department for marketing and public relations either via a phone call or through email. Contacts are listed below:

  • +385 (23) 250613
  • +385 (23) 250 542
  • +358 (23) 250 516
  • +385 91 4254 089

Email: mbrkic@amzd.hr


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