The Fortified County

PHOTO: DAVOR ROSTUHAR

ST. MICHAEL'S FORTRESS 

St. Michael's Fortress is situated on a hill 70 m above sea level. White trimmed stone was used for its construction, which lasted from the 15th to 17th century, and it covers the surface of about 2600 m2.

Architectural remains and plenty of historical artefacts from the times of the Venetian rule were found during archaeological excavations, but also the rests of material culture from the Iron Age, which proves the fact that the Croats built the fortress on the site of an ancient Illyrian town. St. Michael's Fortress is also a great location for an open summer stage and usually hosts excellent concerts of renowned artists, from classical to contemporary styles.

THE FORTRESSES OF ST. JOHN

St. John's Fortress is located on a hill 115 m above the old town centre of Šibenik. It was built in 1646 in the form of a star, according to the project of Venetian military engineer Antonio Leni, in order to protect the town from Turkish attacks from the mainland. It is interesting that the construction of the fortress lasted for only a month and a half, because Šibenik's citizens were so afraid of Turkish attacks that they helped building it too. That proved very shrewd, as only a year later heavy battles were carried out against the army of the Turkish Pasha Tekeli, who wanted to take over the fortress in order to rule the city.

BARONE FORTRESS

Šubićevac Fortress, also known as the Fortress Barone, is located at the altitude of 80 m. Upon construction it was connected with St. John's Fortress, with which it played an important role in the defence of the city against the Turks in 1647. For a long time the Šubićevac Fortress bore the name of Baron Degenfeld, a Venetian soldier of German origin who greatly helped in the defence of Šibenik.

THE KNIN FORTRESS

The Knin Fortress is one of the greatest Croatian fortification monuments and the second largest military fortification in whole Europe, extremely indented and preserved in all its parts. The construction of the fortress started in the 9th century, in the period of the Early Croatian Republic, and some Croatian kings held their capital intermittently in Knin, whereas King Dmitar Zvonimir even held the permanent one.

The fortress consists of five connected parts located 345 m above sea level and about 100 m above the town of Knin. It is 470 m long and on its highest part 110 m wide. The defensive walls, about 2 km long and enclosing the fortress from all sides, are even up to 20 m high at several places. The fortress is a living monument of culture and includes a museum, exhibition galleries and a restaurant, so it represents the main brand of Knin's cultural tourism. It is open from March 16th to October 31st every day from 7 am to 7 pm, and out of season from 7 am to 3 pm.

THE GRADINA FORTRESS

The Gradina Fortress is a historical monument and a part of the system of fortresses of the noble family Nelipčić, located in Drniš 344 m above sea level, above the canyon of the Čikola River. Built on the site of strategic importance, it offers a breath-taking view of the city and Promina Mountain. With the arrival of the Venetians in the late 17th century its demolition was ordered, however it was soon restored because of the threat of the Turkish breaking in, which was present until 1715.

In the 19th century the fortress lost all functions and became a source of building materials for the growing city of Drniš. Today's remains that are visible on the southern side are the original part of the medieval fortress, while the central tower and the north-eastern defence wall are added in the period of Ottoman rule.
Published
October 04, 2017
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