Around the year 293, the Roman emperor Diocletian chose this site on the Adriatic Sea for his magnificent retirement home.He spent 10 years building it, with 16 towers (three remain) and four entrance gates, plus a vast array of rooms and quarters.The small octagonal Cathedral of St Domnius was originally built as a mausoleum for the emperor and later converted to a cathedral.Climbing the bell tower gives a lovely view of the town and the port.Once the seat of Croatian kings, due to its strategic location at a mountain pass, over the years the fortress was heavily booby-trapped with all sorts of deterrents (like holes in the ceiling to pour boiling oil through), but that didn't stop various invaders.As my guide, Ana, shows me the different parts which were added on or left behind by different occupiers - including the Ottomans, Venetians, Austrians and most recently, the Game of Thrones production team - I learn about Dalmatia's complicated history, from the Greeks and Romans to the Barbarians, Hungarians, Venetians, French and Austro-Hungarians right through to Yugoslavia and present- day Croatia.To use this website, cookies must be enabled in your browser.To enable cookies, follow the instructions for your browser below.
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The layout of the cellars gives an idea of the original floorplan for the palace's main level and Game of Thrones fans will recognise some of the basement rooms as Meereen and the spaces where Daenerys kept her dragons.
Souvenir and gift shops in the central passage provide a cool area to potter in in hot weather.
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