Located in the Bay of Pašman, 25 mn south of Zadar, Biograd na moru is a beautiful town with a rich history. It was first mentioned in the 10th century, as the capital of Croatian kings. It is known for nautical tourism, beautiful beaches in the pine forest and gentle bays, so in summer it is visited by people from all over the world. There is no other part of the Adriatic coast where the beauty of the indented coast, small islands and the green sea is so obvious. Add to that the proximity of 4 national parks (Kornati, Plitivice, Krka, Paklenica) and the Vrana Lake Nature Park and you get the ideal vacation spot where you will never be bored.
Biograd is an ancient coronation city of Croatian and Croatian-Hungarian rulers, with a mystique from the old name Zara Vechia, today it is the Riviera capital at the gates of the Kornati. It is located near Vrasko Lake, the largest lake in the country with the Ornithological Reserve under the Ramsar Convention, which preserves the mystical remains of the Templar city under which the century-old Mašković han is the westernmost monument of the Turkish Empire. Below Biograd is a labyrinth of 300 islands and islets with a crown in the Kornati islands, for which the Nobel laureate G. B. Show wrote that God created them on the last day of creation, wanting to crown his work - from tears, stars and breath. Not far away are the remains of fortifications that have sprung up over the centuries on the borders of the Venetian Republic and the Croatian-Hungarian, then the Austrian Empire, ie the Turkish Empire and Venice. Kličevica, as one of them, gave the world the remains of the only three-barrel cannon made according to the design of the genius Leonardo da Vinci. An even older lost and then rediscovered Asseria with the miraculous Trajan's Gate and reliefs of Romulus and Remus with a wolf guards in its stone monumentality over the former roadways.
Not far from the neighboring Pašman, the Čokovac monastery is the last refuge once on these shores of the dominant Benedictines, and it offers a magical scene of history but also a view of the Pašman Channel and the Ravna Kotar valley all the way to the heights of Velebit.
The Biograd Museum will conjure up for you more convincingly than anywhere else in the world all the splendor of the Renaissance cargo of a ship found complete on the seabed near nearby Gnalić. In the city museum you can see many artifacts and evidence of a turbulent past, as well as archaeological finds from prehistoric, ancient and ancient Croatian excavations all the way to a cargo ship from the 16th century.
Not far from Benkovac under Kaštela Benkovića on the hill that dominates the fertile Ravni kotari at the transition to the karst Bukovica, has been a defense and fair center for centuries. In dozens of rural settlements you will find traces of Neolithic, Liburnian forts, medieval or even pre-Romanesque churches, or ancient courtyards (courtyards) and stone courtyards such as Raznjevic court, which preserve the tradition of local people through the centuries and changes of time and empires.
Founded in 1969, the Biograd City Museum is located on the coast in the city center, in the former courthouse of Emperor Francis Joseph I from 1876. It contains several collections: archaeological collection, cargo collection from a sunken ship from the 16th century, ethnographic collection, historical department and a collection of fine paintings. The most attractive exhibit is the cargo of a Venetian merchant ship that sank in the Pašman Channel in 1583 and was discovered in 1967. It contains expensive merchandise and luxury glassware originating from the Venetian Murano glassworks.
Under the Kaštela Benkovića on the hill that dominates the fertile Ravni kotari at the transition to the karst Bukovica, not far from the Liburnian and Roman Asseria, the town of Benkovac emerged, through the centuries a defensive and fair center.
Even today, the original fair is held here, and the fruits of the good land of this valley, with a mild Mediterranean climate, gave him an abundance of fine wines, olive oils and gastronomic secrets that he gives to guests from the sea in unforgettable events and pleasures. In a wide rural area, it hides almost forgotten Roman and medieval cultural remains and stories that are still being discovered. Almost an innocent tourist destination, it is a paradise for relaxing in nature and searching for new experiences. Restored old village buildings, bicycle paths along ancient Roman roads and the fruits of the earth, often with a European eco-label, are the trump cards of the area.
Where the tame flat fields of Bukovica become karst barrenness of Bukovica, on a strategic hill above important roads stands as long as time - Asseria. A few kilometers from Benkovac, where 2,000 years ago from the Roman Jader (Zadar) traveled to the then metropolis of Salona (Solin), stands the old fortress and the city of Liburna, upgraded by Roman entrepreneurship. The magnificent Trajan's Gate, forum, streets and ramparts are covered with oblivion, the passage of time and stone, and in recent years and decades have been revealed. The forum was covered with life by the early Christian church and cemetery. Three kilometers of aqueduct have been forgotten, and the mighty, three-meter-thick city walls seem to have merged with the rock from which they are now being freed. Why did the inhabitants of the mighty city leave? What binds people from the surrounding stone villages and them? Possessing the power of serving and ruling the stone, because it is here that the largest number of Liburnian tombstones of cipus and mighty city walls were carved, the local people lived in stone and stone and in modern times are excellent, almost natural stonemasons.