Since 1874, this promenade is a wonderful place to walk and enjoy the parks and palm trees. It has a beautiful view of the islands of Ugljan and Pašman and the Zadar channel. Also, Zadar is the only city where are allowed to swim in the center, on the promenade, so prepare your bikini and enjoy the perfect summer in Zadar.
Zadar Waterfront (cro. Riva) is a place where locals gather, exchange stories, and soak up the hot rays of the sun. It’s a place that always buzzes with people and is filled with positive energy even on the rainiest and cloudiest days.
Some visitors say that the very soul of Zadar lies exactly in Riva. While we couldn’t possibly confirm that with 100% accuracy, we can still tell you that it’s a special place in Zadar with unique energy you have to witness yourself.
Riva is filled with various colors: on one side there is a lot of greenery; palm trees, grass, and flowers, and on the other side there is an endless blue sea. It also offers a unique view of the islands of Pašman and Ugljan. Those islands look so close to making you think you could swim to them but don't try at all because really - it just looks like that.
Kalelarga, Zadar's most famous street, is not the only monument in Zadar that has a song dedicated to it. Ivica Sikirić Ićo made a song about the Zadar Seafront called “Riva Zadarska”, which perfectly describes the love of a Zadar resident for the waterfront.
Location and famous monuments nearby
The waterfront is located in the old part of the city, known as the Zadar Peninsula.
Many famous Zadar monuments are located in the immediate vicinity of the Riva. Some of them are: the Church of St. Donatus, the Cathedral of St. Anastasia, the Greeting to the Sun, the Sea Organ, St. Mary's Benedictine Monastery, Roman Forum, People's Square, 5 Wells Square, and the list goes on.
There are also many diverse cafes and excellent restaurants you can visit and refresh yourself in if you get tired after a long walk through the streets of Zadar.
Because of all the diverse content that’s just a short walk away from Riva, it’s definitely a place you have to visit!
A little bit of history
The construction of Riva dates all the way back to the 19th century, the year 1868, by order of the Austrian Emperor Franz Joseph. At that time, Zadar was no longer a city-fortress, which had a great impact on its urban development. In fact, because of the waterfront construction, the bastions on the south side were destroyed.
Already at the beginning of the 20th century, less than 100 years after its construction, the waterfront was embellished by 18 luxurious palaces, a dock for luxurious passenger boats, promenades, and parks.
However, those beautiful new accessories to Riva were short-lived as many of those buildings ended up being demolished during the bombing of Zadar in World War II. Some of the remaining palaces are today's Rectorate and Zadar University buildings.
Today, the Zadar Riva is of great importance to Zadar, Croatia, and tourists. It’s the place where all the fun events take place, such as the Millennium Jump, Zadar Sunset Festivals, and many more.
Currently, it's under construction due to renovation which should be finished soon. After the renovation, Zadarska Riva will be even more beautiful and bigger.
Despite the construction works that are currently taking place, you can still take a walk through it unhindered and soak up all the beauty it has to offer.
That's why if you find yourself in Zadar, take a walk down the Riva and feel the essence of Zadar!