The joke going around the Seabourn Odyssey, a 450-passenger cruise ship sailing between Athens and Venice, is that the captain found the port of Zadar, Croatia, by Googling it on his computer.
Because so many passengers said they had never heard of Zadar, Captain Geir-Arne Thue-Nilsen feigned ignorance, too, as if he had stumbled upon Zadar while wandering up the Dalmatian Coast of the Adriatic Sea. “I just Googled it this morning,” he would say.
Zadar may be off the radar for some modern travelers, but ship captains have been stopping at this port for more than 700 years.
At least that’s what the city’s tourism office says, and Zadar written history – I Googled it – seems to agree.
Zadar is a delightful port town for walking – with an old city that houses a university, a pack of churches, some Roman ruins, a host of restaurants, and the amazing sea organ, played by the wind and the waves.
The sea organ (Morske Orgulje) sits under the concrete at the edge of the cruise ship dock. (See picture at rightSounds comes from holes in the pier). It is an experimental musical instrument of plastic tubes and a resonating cavity. They create random but harmonic sounds as a result of wind and waves. It’s very cool.
Zadar was one of the highlights of a one-week Seabourn Odyssey voyage from Athens to Pilos and Corfu, Greece; Kotor, Montenegro; Dubrovnik and Zadar, Croatia; Ravenna and Venice, Italy.