Skradin: Gateway to Croatia’s Krka National Park

Skradin was supposed to be an overnight stop so we could spend the day at the Krka National Park but this cute little town completely won us over and we stayed on and on!

What was so special about Skradin? 

The Krka National Park…
Stunning waterfalls including Skradinski Buk and Roski Slap, scenic paths meandering through the trees and a visit to the Franciscan Monastery on Visovac Island were highlights of our day at Krka National Park. You can even swim here so don’t forget to take your bathers! Skradin really is the gateway to the park…boats leave here regularly for the ride up the Krka River. There’ll be more written about this fabulous park later!

Krka National Park

Krka National Park

 

Krka National Park

Krka National Park

 

Visovac Island in Krka National Park

Visovac Island in Krka National Park

 

The town…
Skradin’s history goes way back. It is one of the oldest settlements in Croatia. Olive trees and vineyards cover the hills that surround Skradin and help to created a beautifully protected marina that is one of the best on the coast. Being only fifteen kilometres from the mouth of the Krka River, this position and closeness to the Dalmatian islands means it is extremely popular.

Skradin's Marina

Skradin’s Marina

 

Skradin from the river

Skradin from the river

 

It doesn’t take long to walk along the waterfront street where the huge, mega boats moor. Behind here, stone houses and newly painted shops line the cobbled street of the old town. New retail ventures are moving onto town but the old houses thankfully remain.

Waterfront street in Skradin

Along the waterfront in Skradin

 

Skradin

 

Skradin            Skradin

 

Skradin             Skradin

 

Skradin

 

Saint Spiridon Cathedral, Skradin

Saint Spiridon Cathedral

 

Skradin

Coffee time in Skradin

 

Bibich Wines

One of the local well known wineries!

 

Our favourite place in Skradin was Konoba Mate or as we called it Mates Wine Bar, on the waterfront!

This friendly little wine bar has been run by the same family for nearly fifty years. Anka, the eighty four year old matriach still works in the bar. As with many families in Skradin, they make their own proscuitto, cheese, olives, wine and grappa. They even have rooms for rent.

This was the perfect place to sit, sipping wine and nibbling on cheese and proscuitto and watching the boats come and go.

mates wine bar

View from Konoba Mates- the best view in Skradin!

 

Konoba Mates

Konoba Mates

 

Scenes from Konoba Mates

Scenes from Konoba Mates

 

The food… 

Skradin is also known for it’s gourmet delights….
As in the rest of Croatia, there’s a wide choice of fabulously fresh seafood available here. John Dory (kovač), sea bass (brancin) and bream (orada) are good choices. Try the local oysters and fresh water trout too.

 

Čoklice, tiny local fish

Čoklice, tiny local fish at Restaurant Bonaca

 

fish

Grilled fish at Restaurant Bonaca

 

You must also try the Skradinski rižot or Skradin Risotto
It’s not your usual risotto! With this delicious dish, the veal, usually a shoulder, is cooked for twelve hours, or even longer, in a rich stock before the rice is added. A dusting of Paski Sir…cheese from the island of Pag, finishes the dish. Delicious!
Each family has their own recipe so the dishes may vary a bit but the secret of the dish is the long, slow cooking of the meat.

Risotto

Skradinski rižot from Zlatne Skolijk

 

And then to finish your meal, you have to have a slice of Skradinska Torta. This special cake is made with ground almonds and walnuts and then flavoured with honey and a rose liqueur…served with a glass of home made Grappa of course!

 Skradinska Torta

Skradinska Torta

 

Stay
Guesthouse Ancora…owned by Zlatko and his wife who is Anka’s granddaughter  (Konoba Mates)
They speak perfect English.
Mesarska 5a, Skradin
Tel:+385 95 910 7068

Anka’s son also has a small apartment for rent behind the wine bar!

 

 

Articles you may enjoy reading:
Seven Weeks in Croatia
A. Ston.ishing Oysters in Croatia 
Zagreb’s Most Unusual Tourist Attraction
The Croatian Island of Cres

 

This post is part of the 2014 A to Z Challenge You can read all the posts on my theme “Off the Beaten Track”  here 

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25 Responses to Skradin: Gateway to Croatia’s Krka National Park

  1. Denise Hammond April 23, 2014 at 12:31 am #

    Thanks for sharing this. If I ever get back to Croatia I will definitely make time to see this area. Beautiful.

    • Jenny Freedman April 25, 2014 at 3:12 pm #

      It’s definitely worth a visit Denise when you do get back to Croatia!

  2. Ann April 23, 2014 at 12:53 am #

    Uh-oh. So, our plans to go to Croatia this year got interrupted because of family visits. Then our friends in the US said they want to meet up in Croatia for our annual/semi-annual friend’s trip. So, we decided to skip it this year and go next year…

    But those waterfalls! I just don’t know if I can skip it.

    I’m having a hard time finalizing where we will go when we take off for a week in August or September, but I might not be able to take Croatia off the list yet.

    • Jenny Freedman April 25, 2014 at 3:13 pm #

      There’s so much to see in Croatia Ann you are going to need a couple of visits! Why not sneak one in this year!!

  3. Katrina April 23, 2014 at 1:20 am #

    Oh, how beautiful!!!

    • Jenny Freedman April 25, 2014 at 3:14 pm #

      Thanks Katrina…it really is a fabulous part of Croatia!

  4. Corinne April 23, 2014 at 1:30 am #

    Oh Jenny, I just got back from Croatia and did not have this on our itinerary…but now that I’ve read it, next time I’ll go for sure!

    • Jenny Freedman April 25, 2014 at 3:15 pm #

      Not that we need an excuse to go back…but you do have one now Corinne!

  5. Libbie April 23, 2014 at 8:55 pm #

    I’m going to Croatia for the third time in September. Unfortunately I’m never able to stay more than a few days. My plan is to go there for a very long stay within the next few years. I think it may be the most atmospheric, gorgeous country in Europe. My question to you is this: how difficult did you find it to communicate? I’m assuming you and your husband don’t speak Serbo-Croatian. Once you leave the tourist trail, does communication become very difficult?

    Libbie

    • Ana April 24, 2014 at 10:01 pm #

      Hi Libbie,

      I’m Croatian, so know the country well. You’ll find English is generally widely spoken, except perhaps in some smaller villages. I’m sure you’ll be fine.

    • Jenny Freedman April 25, 2014 at 3:56 pm #

      Communication is very easy Libbie. Most people speak English. We didn’t have any problems. If occasionally an older person didn’t understand us, there wuld always be someone to help. The Croatians are very friendly.You’ll have a fabulous time!

  6. Calli April 24, 2014 at 1:24 am #

    Absolutely stunning! I totally get why it didn’t end up being just a “stop over”. That Park is wonderful!

    • Jenny Freedman April 25, 2014 at 3:58 pm #

      It’s places like Skradin that make a holiday!

  7. Susan Leigh Noble April 24, 2014 at 8:31 am #

    Lovely pictures…looks like a wonderful place to visit.

    • Jenny Freedman April 25, 2014 at 3:18 pm #

      Thanks Susan. It’s a very special part of Croatia.

  8. Chris Boothman April 24, 2014 at 10:18 am #

    Such a gorgeous collection of images here. If you read our earlier A to Z Challenge post on Croatia, you will know that we are very envious of folks that have already experienced this beautiful country. We both love exploring both the famous landmarks and hidden gems in new locations and I think you have a perfect spot here with Skradin!

    • Jenny Freedman April 25, 2014 at 3:21 pm #

      I think you’re going to have to cross Croatia off your wish list very soon Chris. You’re not that far away either to pop over for a quick visit! There are definitely some hidden gems waiting to be experienced

  9. Muza-chan April 24, 2014 at 1:53 pm #

    Lovely pictures 🙂

    • Jenny Freedman April 25, 2014 at 3:21 pm #

      Thanks Lili. It’s a stunning part of the world!

  10. Krista April 24, 2014 at 5:52 pm #

    What a gorgeous park and absolutely delightful town, Jenny. 🙂 I would’ve unpacked my bags and settled in too. 🙂

    • Jenny Freedman April 25, 2014 at 3:25 pm #

      Thanks Krista. It was fabulous having the time to be able to decide to unpack and stay a bit longer than ususal.

  11. Ana April 24, 2014 at 9:52 pm #

    Skradin is a great little place! We stayed there for a few days a few years ago, and had a wonderful time. We went to the national park, of course, and swam in the river. We also hired bikes and went cycling, which was gorgeous. I remember Mate’s konoba, too! 🙂 We had some lovely wine and prshut and sir there! 🙂

    • Ana April 24, 2014 at 9:59 pm #

      Last April, we visited the National Park again with family. The river was bursting from its bank, from all the rain that had fallen previously. Flowing furiously, it looked incredibly dramatic, with electryfing atmosphere. It was brilliant to experience that side of it, too. Shall have to post some photos soon.

      • Jenny Freedman April 25, 2014 at 3:29 pm #

        It would have been fantastic to see the park after so much rain Ana. Yes, please post some of your photos…I’d love to see them.

    • Jenny Freedman April 25, 2014 at 3:27 pm #

      It’s a fabulous little spot. Great that you have experienced the Mates hospitality too Ana! There was so much to do from here, we could have stayed even longer! Maybe we’ll go back instead!

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