The island of Ugljan is located in the region of Dalmatia and it is part of Zadar archipelago. It is separated from the mainland by the Zadar channel and connected with Pašman island by a bridge. The island has been populated since the Neolithic period and today is one of the most densely populated islands in Croatia. Interesting thing is that all the settlements on the island are located on the northeastern side. The island was also densely populated in the Roman period, so there are many ancient Roman ruins that are worth visiting on the island.
The island of Ugljan is also called “the green island” as it is covered with dense Mediterranean vegetation, vineyards, fig and olive trees. It has a long fishing and olive oil production tradition that dates back to the Roman period, in fact, the small port village of Muline was very famous during the Roman period for the best olive oil in the whole Empire. The island of Ugljan is perfect for all those in search of stunning beaches, hidden bays, crystal clear sea and unspoiled nature.
What to visit
On the island of Ugljan there are several villages mainly located in bays and the most famous are Lukoran, Sutomiscica, Poljana, Preko, Kali, Kukljica and Ugljan which embraces several smaller villages. All these small picturesque villages will absolutely enchant you with their charming stone houses, narrow streets and breathless views.
Preko village is the main port connected to Zadar by a daily ferry line running every hour and it takes around 25 minutes to get to Preko. As you step on the island, you can admire this small village with beautiful stone houses, surrounded by dense Mediterranean vegetation. Just in front of the village, there is a small island called Galevac, home to a Franciscan monastery from the 15th century. Don’t forget to visit the beautiful Romanic church of St John which dates back from the 11th century. Near the village of Preko, you can visit the ruins of St Michael’s Fort.
In Muline village you can visit Villa Rustica, which is the oldest Roman building on the island and the ruins of an olive oil mill where the best olive oil in the Empire was made. Lukoran consists of several settlements, Mali Lukoran, Turkija, Zmorac, Primorje, and Punta Rancicevi-Sikiricevi. It is surrounded by untouched nature and it has a rich historical heritage. Veli and Mali Lukoran are perfect places where to enjoy the gentle summer breeze while sunbathing in a peaceful bay surrounded by beautiful pine trees.
Kali is a small fisherman village, where you can admire two small ports full of fishing boats and see fisherman preparing their nets for the next catch. Above the village there is a small hill from which you can enjoy a stunning panorama, dominated by the church of St Lawerence and it beautiful tower bell.
The village of Ugljan does not have a classic shape of Dalmatian village, but it stretches for several kilometers along the coast including several small settlements. When in Ugljan, don’t forget to visit Califfi Castle, built in the 17th century. Today the castle carries the name of famous Croatian basketball player Krešimir Čosić.
Beaches on Ugljan
On the island there are numerous beaches, those in and near the villages during the summer can be crowded, but don’t worry as there are many hidden bays sheltering spectacular beaches waiting for you to be discovered. Most beaches in Croatia are pebbly, but on the island of Ugljan, those who prefer sandy beaches will find their paradise. We recommend you to visit the well equipped sandy beach Mostir, perfect for families with children and nonswimmers as the water is shallow and also the beach in the cove of Luka. Other beautiful coves to visit are the cove of Gaj, Garmina, Tratica, Pavlesina, Drazica, Jankova and Lucica.