I have seen many beautiful places in Croatia but Primošten is really special and magical. I planned to stay here for only three days but when I arrived here and felt the spirit of this lovely little town, I knew that I had just found my little paradise on earth. So I could not just leave. I stayed here and discovered Primošten piece by piece.
In this blog article, I will tell about the best things to do in Primošten, the most beautiful beaches around the town and things to see. You will also find some interesting facts about Primošten, travel tips, as well as aerial photos to inspire you to visit this beautiful town in Dalmatia. I hope you enjoy it.
Where is Primošten, Croatia?
Primošten is a small coastal town in the southern part of Croatia, between the cities of Šibenik (30 km) and Trogir (30 km). The largest city in this area is Split (60 km) with an airport and a big ferry terminal where there are connections to all the most important Croatian cities on the coast, nearby islands as well as to the Italian cities of Ancona, Venice, and Pescara.
Interesting facts about Primošten
Primošten is located on a picturesque peninsula and connected to the mainland by a thin causeway. The interesting fact is that it was originally an island. About five centuries ago, the residents of Primošten, fleeing from the Turks, settled on the nearby island of Gola Glava. They surrounded it with city walls and built a wooden bridge, which they raised in times of danger. That’s how the town got its name: premošten means bridged over, hence Primošten.
Later, when the residents of Primošten no longer had to fear the invasion of the Turks, they filled the part of the sea over which there was a bridge. The town of Primošten was connected with the mainland and from the island, it became a peninsula.
In the meantime, Primošten has become a popular holiday resort. One of the beaches, Mala Raduča, has even been mentioned on the list of the top 10 beaches in Croatia! Rumor has it that the former US president, George W. Bush, spends his holidays in this seaside town every year. I also heard that Bill Gates wanted to buy one of the nearby islands.
Recently, Primošten became a place where one of the greatest statues of the Virgin Mary in the world is located. The monument of Our Lady of Loretto is 17 meters high and is apparently visible from the Italian coast. Is it true? I have no idea, but it sounds catchy, is not it? Actually, visiting this place is one of the best things to do in Primošten.
What to see in Primošten, Croatia?
Primošten is more like a seaside village than a city so there are no museums etc. Most people come here to relax on the beautiful beach and feel the atmosphere of a real Croatian seaside town. It is also a very good base for visiting Šibenik, Trogir, Split, and the Krka National Park. Someone might say that there is not much to see in Primošten, but that’s not true. There are some interesting places here that you will definitely want to visit.
The best 10 things to see in Primošten, Croatia:
2. Our Lady of Loretto Statue – the 17-meter high statue designed by architect Aron Varga and mosaic artist Milun Garcevic, one of the biggest shrines to the Virgin Mary in the world.
3. Mala Raduča Beach – the most famous beach in Primošten which is considered to be one of the best 10 best beaches in Croatia.
4. Bucavac Vineyards – the well-known Primošten vineyards often called the “stone lace” as they are entwined with kilometers of dry-stone walls.
5. The Church of St. Rocco (Crkva Sv. Roka) – the 16th-century church in front of the gate to the old town of Primošten.
7. Ulica Svetog Jurja – the main street of the old town of Primošten, which leads to the Church of St George and the old hilltop cemetery.
8. The old hilltop cemetery in Primošten – the best place to watch the sunset in Primošten with a beautiful view of the beaches of Raduča, the surrounding islets, and the Šibenik Archipelago.
9. Cape Kremik (Gaj) – a green peninsula with beautiful beaches, the abandoned Hotel Marina Lučica, and a coastal path that leads to a small lighthouse.
10. The Statue of the Fisherman with a Cat – probably the most frequently photographed place in Primošten with a beautiful view of the old town.
Beaches in Primošten, Croatia
Primošten is not only a lovely old town located on a picturesque peninsula. Beautiful beaches are what attracts more and more tourists every year. As I mentioned before, the Mala Raduča Beach in Primošten is on the list of the top 10 beaches in Croatia. Besides, there are also many other interesting places for swimming and sunbathing. In fact, Primošten is called the city of beaches.
There are typical resort beaches with sunbeds as well as secluded FKK nudist beaches. Below is a map where you can find them. I would like to thank Andrijana, who wrote to me on my Instagram and helped me create it. It turned out that many names of the beaches were wrong on Google as well as on other internet maps.
The best beaches in Primošten:
2. Velika Raduča Beach – pebble beach located on the opposite side of the peninsula than Mala Raduča.
3. Garbina Beach – a small but very picturesque beach in the old town of Primošten, which is located in a charming rocky bay.
4. Marina Lučica Beach – a beautiful natural beach near the small port and the abandoned Hotel Marina Lučica.
5. June Beach – FKK beach with turquoise water and the amazing view of the town of Primošten.
7. Popožo Beach – a small beach near the harbor in the old town of Primošten.
8. Pista Beach – a popular beach near the Hotel Zora with sunbeds and other infrastructure, located close to Mala and Velika Raduča.
9. Dagna Beach – a small cove with a beach bar, located below the main road leading to Primošten.
10. Otočić Smokvica – a small island next to Raduča beach where there is a secluded place for swimming and sunbathing for naturists.
Top 10 best things to do in Primošten, Croatia
I have written here about the best things to see in Primošten, but I would like to give you some travel tips from my point of view. I spent almost two weeks here and got to know this little town quite well. So I created a list of top 10 things to do in Primošten. Regardless of whether you come here for one day or stay longer, I hope that my suggestions will be helpful.
1. Take a coastal walk around the old town of Primošten.
Most tourists visiting Primošten enter the old town through the stone gate and go up to the church. I suggest you first take a walk along the seaside alley around the old town to better feel the atmosphere of this place.
When you pass restaurants and shops, reaching the end of the peninsula, it is like a completely different world. Beautiful views of the sea are from here and there is even a small but lovely beach Garbina where you can rest for a while.
2. Visit the hilltop Church of St. George.
The 15th-century Church of St. George (Crkva Sv. Jurja) is the most important monument and the best place to visit in Primošten. Inside there is an altar dedicated to Our Lady of Loretto, which is the patron of the town. Be sure to look up at the beautiful ceiling paintings while there!
3. Enjoy the sunset from the old Primošten cemetery.
It may sound strange, but one of the top things to do in Primošten is… visiting the cemetery. Located at the top of the hill, next to the Church of St. George, the old Primošten cemetery is probably the best place to watch the sunset in Primošten.
The views are really beautiful and being here you have the feeling that you are surrounded by the sea. From here you can see the peninsula with beaches Raduča, nearby islands and even the Šibenik Archipelago on the horizon! What’s more, the atmosphere of this place is really amazing. It is so peaceful and quiet that you can really relax and contemplate the beauty around you.
4. Get lost in the maze of narrow streets.
I’ve written about it many times, in blog articles about the old town of Rhodes, the Gothic Quarter in Barcelona as well as other travel itineraries that I created. I think the best way to get to know the place and feel its atmosphere is getting lost there. So when you’re in Primošten, put down the map and just wander through the winding streets.
Pay attention to the details: the roofs of stone houses, colorful flowers, small plots, vintage cars, lovely decorations. You will be surprised how much you can discover simply by not planning anything.
5. Relax on the beach.
Primošten is a city of beaches, a perfect destination for everyone who wants to swim in the crystal clear waters of the Adriatic and enjoy the sun. So if you’re here, just go to the beach, relax and forget about the whole world. In other words, try to learn ‘fjaka‘, the Dalmatia’s state of mind.
6. Enjoy the beauty of nature while walking around Cape Kremik.
Secret FKK beaches hidden in bays, the smell of sun-warmed earth, salty rocks, flowers, and herbs. And an amazing view of the Primošten peninsula. Sounds cool? If so, be sure to take a walk along the coastal path around Cape Kremik (also known as Gaj).
The path leads next to the abandoned Hotel Marina Lučica and the beautiful FKK beaches, to the small lighthouse. If you want, you can wander further to Marina Kremik or climb to the top of the hill, to the statue of Our Lady of Loretto.
7. Climb up the hill to see the statue of Our Lady of Loretto.
The statue of Our Lady of Loretto was erected recently and is a new tourist attraction. This 17-meter monument was designed by architect Aron Varga and mosaic artist Milun Garcevic. This is one of the biggest shrines to the Virgin Mary in the world. They say it is visible even from the Italian coast. Is it true? Well, I do not know, but it sounds pretty catchy, is not it?
Anyway, from the hill where is the statue of Our Lady of Loretto, there is a breathtaking view of Primošten and the surrounding area. The monument itself is also unique. The mosaic has made a big impression on me, it shines in the sun like millions of tiny crystals. Visiting this place is definitely one of the best things to do in Primošten.
8. Listen to the sound of church bells.
Perhaps you will find it as strange as visiting the cemetery and admiring the sunset there, but believe me, it is really worth listening to the sound of church bells in Primošten. It made a big impression on me when I was lying on the beach at Cape Kremik looking at the crystal clear blue sea and Primošten peninsula on the horizon.
Everywhere around the silence and suddenly church bells began to ring. It is difficult to describe, but it was such a beautiful and authentic experience! For a moment I felt like time stopped and I see Primošten as it was years ago, before it turned into a tourist resort.
9. Try local food and wine.
If you stay in Primošten, try the local food and wine Babić from the Bucavac vineyards. This indigenous Croatian grape variety is one of the most balanced and unique Dalmatian red wines.
When it comes to food, in Primošten there are many restaurants called konoba where you can try local specialties: fish, seafood, lamb, and others. Everything I tried was really delicious but my number one is the fish that my host Jure grilled on rosemary wood. It was a cipal (flathead gray mullet) bought at a fish market and prepared in a traditional Dalmatian way. Believe me, it was the best fish I’ve ever had!
10. Buy some handmade souvenirs.
I usually do not buy typical souvenirs, I prefer to bring some wine and local delicacies from my trip. But in Primošten there are many interesting shops and art galleries where you can buy really unique and beautiful things.
It is also worth buying filigree jewelry with an ornament called botun, which is typical to the Šibenik region. I bought myself a pair of earrings with botun and pink coral, I love them!
What is Primošten like? Is it similar Rovinj in Istria?
Before I visited Primošten in Croatia, I looked at some photos of this place. I thought then that the town was a bit like Rovinj. Probably because it was also built on an island that was later connected to the mainland and there was a hilltop church.
When I arrived to Primošten, I was surprised how this place is different from Rovinj in Istria! Rovinj is more urban, and Primošten is more like a village where everyone knows each other. This is a place where you can really relax and calm down, be close to nature and feel part of the community. Both places I mentioned here are beautiful, but if I had to compare, I would say that Primošten is more cozy and homely. I felt really good here.
Primošten has old stone houses, narrow streets, beautiful beaches, atmospheric restaurants. However, you also need to know that the old city is not as big and well preserved as in Rovinj. You can still find magical places where time has stopped, but on the other hand, many historical buildings have been replaced with new apartments.
If you are wondering which place is better to visit – Primošten or Rovinj, it’s hard to say. Everyone likes something different. Primošten will be a better choice if you are looking for beautiful beaches and want to take a break from the hustle and bustle of the city. It is a kind of compromise between the location in the city and in the seaside village. If on the other hand you want to see colorful houses in Italian style and you would like to take some nice pictures on your Instagram, go to Rovinj in Istria.
How to get to Primošten, Croatia?
As I have already mentioned, Primošten is located between Šibenik and Trogir. To get to Primošten you just have to follow the coastal road E65 (D8) called Jadranska magistrala (the Adriatic Highway). If you are traveling from Zagreb on the A1 motorway, exit towards Šibenik and then continue along the coast.
The nearest airport from Primošten is Resnik in Split. You can get to Primošten by bus or rent a car. There are many buses to Primošten from both Split and Šibenik, so it will not be a problem. Sometimes there is an option that your host will pick you up from the airport, so if you are interested, ask him/her about it.
Where to stay in Primošten?
What is the best place to stay in Primošten? If you are looking for a hotel, there is only one in the town. Hotel Zora is located on the Raduča peninsula and has a beautiful view of Primošten. There is a swimming pool with heated sea water, so you can swim even in winter.
The rest of the accommodation is private apartments and rooms. Actually, Primošten divides into the old part on the peninsula and the new town built along the coast. Each location has its own advantages, but when it comes to me, I recommend staying in the old town. At the very end of the peninsula, if it is possible because it is peaceful there and you can really relax from the hustle and bustle. Note: the Primošten peninsula is a pedestrian zone so you will have to park your car somewhere outside the old town.
The place where I stayed is called Apartment Podatok and I highly recommend it. There is a beautiful view of the sea and the atmosphere is really great. I think, thanks to this fantastic place and the friendly host, I have such good memories of Primošten. If you are looking for accommodation in Primošten, take a look at the map below. I hope it will be helpful.
When is the best time to visit Primošten?
Primošten is a holiday resort so most people visit it in the summer months like June, July, and August. Then the whole town comes to life and all tourist attractions are available, so there are much more things to do. However, if you do not like the heat and avoid the crowds, the best idea is to visit Primošten in May or September. I think it is the best time when you can feel the atmosphere of the town and relax, enjoying the beauty of nature and beautiful beaches that you have just for yourself.
I believe that some places have a spirit. I mean atmosphere, beauty, amazing history, the way we feel there. Sometimes more time is needed to see it. However, there are places that have a very intense impact on the imagination, inspire and change the way we perceive what is around us. This is what Primošten is. It seemed special to me from the first moment I saw it. Just from the moment, I knew that I was supposed to be here. And I decided that I would not leave this beautiful town until I knew it better. I was supposed to spend only two nights here, but I stayed for two weeks! And I do not regret it. It was a very special and magical time for me.