Northern Dalmatia Sights

Crkva sv. Donata (St. Donatus Church)

  • Religious Building/Site/Shrine
  • Fodor's Choice

Published 01/14/2016

Fodor's Review

Zadar's star attraction, this huge, cylindrical structure is the most monumental early Byzantine church in Croatia. Originally called Church of the Holy Trinity, and probably inspired by plans set forth in a book by the Byzantine emperor Constantine Porphyrogenet, On Ruling the Empire, centuries later it was rededicated to St. Donatus, who was bishop here from 801 to 814. Legend has it that Donatus, an Irishman, was the one who had it built, using stone from the adjacent Forum. The stark, round interior features a circular center surrounded by an annular passageway; a sanctuary consisting of three apses attached to the lofty mantle of the church walls, set off from the center by two columns; and a gallery reached by a circular stairway. Although the church no longer hosts services, its fine acoustics make it a regular concert venue. During the off-season (November to March), when the church is closed, someone at the Archaeological Museum next door may have a key to let you in.

Sight Information


Šimuna Kožičića Benje, Zadar, Zadarska, 23000, Croatia




Sight Details:

  • 10 Kn
  • Apr.–Sept., 9–2 and 5–9; Oct., 9–2

Published 01/14/2016


Book A Trip



  • CARS

What's Nearby

  • Restaurants
  • Sights
  • Hotels

See all sights in Northern Dalmatia

Add Your Own Review

When did you go?

Minimum 200 character count

How many stars would you give?




Don't Miss

No Thanks