- For other places with the same name, see Kaštela (disambiguation).
Kaštela is a town in Croatia, on the Dalmatian coast. The town and it's villages are also known as the 7 pearls of Adriatic sea.
On the stretch of the central Croatian Adriatic coastline in Dalmatia, located between the historic UNESCO cities of Split and Trogir, nestle the seven ancient settlements, Kaštel Štafilić, Kaštel Novi, Kaštel Stari, Kaštel Lukšić, Kaštel Kambelovac, Kaštel Gomilica and Kaštel Sućurac which merged together, form the governmental community of the town of Kaštela. The area has been inhabited since prehistoric times and today we can still see abundant evidence of these earlier civilizations. Kaštela is renowned for its castles and fortified settlements. The villages appear at first very similar, but after closer inspection you can see that they are different in many ways, each of them has its own special, unique history and soul. The picturesque beaches, coves, parks and fortresses stretch along the entire length of the Riviera, and comfortable accommodation can be found in a number of hotels, apartments, private houses and camp-sites in all price ranges to suit all needs. Apart from sunbathing and swimming on the many local beaches, you can hike to the peak of Kozjak (780 m.o.s.) and also visit the ancient local centres of traditional architecture.
Towards the end of the 15th century, when the Turks invaded these areas, the Croatian population lived in unprotected villages on the slopes of Kozjak. The noblemen of Split and Trogir built fortresses and a defense wall along the coastline to fortify the surrounding area, protect the population, and ensure continued agricultural production. By the 17th century, 17 towers or castles, and 12 fortified settlements had been built, as a result of which the entire are earned its name Kaštela (meaning "Castles"). These fortresses were built on the seafront to the south, and around them to the north the fortified settlements were formed for the peasants, with traditional small stone dwellings. As the threats from the Ottoman Empire subsided, these cramped settlements spread beyond the walls - as they are to this day. This is how contemporary seven towns of Kaštela were formed, within which (to varying degrees) the previous fortresses and fortified settlements have been preserved.
- Split airport is located just outside of Kaštela. It's a 5 minute drive.
- Trains run between Split and Zagreb, Split and Perković (where you can change for Šibenik), with stops in Kaštel Stari and Kaštel Kambelovac, in the northern part of Kaštela. From there it's 10-15 minutes of downhill walk to the bus stations. Timetables can be found from Croatian Railways website . Trains are generally slower but slightly cheaper than buses in all of Croatia.
- By car is the easiest way. The roads are very good, and you can't miss Kaštela if you are close to the sea.
- There is no big bus station. If you are travelling from some farther away city, check with the driver if he can leave you somewhere by the road when he is passing through Kaštela. Or you can just get out at Trogir or Split, depending on your starting point, and take the local bus number 37 to Kaštela.
- There is a local bus, number 37, that goes from Split to Trogir and vice versa. You can catch it every 20 minutes from a number of marked stops in Kaštela.
- A lot of things are within walking distance, and it's the best way to explore the town and see the fortresses and the architecture.
- If you have a bicycle you can ride next to the sea through almost all of Kaštela.
- Car rental - there are many to chose from. In the off season, rates can be negotiated down by contacting the company in advance. You will get a better rate doing this than booking online directly. Local companies generally have cheaper rates than the multi-nationals.
In all of Kaštela you can walk by the beautiful seafront, enjoy the sun and have a drink in one of the many cafes on it. Visit many peaceful parks which povide the perfect shade from the hot summer sun.
Seafront and old fortress in Kaštel Štafilić
- 1500 year old olive tree. Today it is protected as a natural monument and is a rare and beautiful symbol of longevity, peace and the Mediterranean ambiance.
- Also visit the old village and it's central square Igrišće, which boasts traditional stone architecture and a number of summer events that take place under a clear blue sky.
- Has the biggest selection of beaches in town.
The church of Our Lady of Stomorija
- If you visit the slopes of Kozjak adjacent to the ancient shrine of Our Lady of Stomorija you'll find, on both sides of the road, vineyards and olive groves. Adjacent to the church are the Biblical gardens, beautiful and serene, which contain a number of authentic plant varieties that are mentioned in the bible. An ideal place to enjoy nature in peace.
- Stroll along the coast and through the narrow streets, visit the squares, cafes and restaurants.
- Visit the ancient marina, that has provided protection for it's boats for centuries.
- The Baroque church of St John the Baptist, with it's famous luxurious interior.
- The central square known as Brce, with it's lively market stalls and fishmongers is a gathering place for the whole community, ever changing during the summer months, from morning market, with seasonal flowers, fruit and vegetables, to evening performances by choirs, orchestras, poets and a number of summer festivals.
- Just across from the railway station and towards Kozjak you will find the beautiful medieval chapel of St. Jurje in Radun, which dates back to 10th or 11th century.
- Take a stroll by the sea and see beautiful and preserved castles, churches, parks and stone houses
- The oldest fortress of this town, known as the Rušinac, still stands today on the cliffs by the sea, surrounded by beaches and Mediterranean vegetation.
- In the vicinity of Rušinac is a small church in which you can find the local legend and love story of Miljenko and Dobrila.
- Located on the water's edge, in the central part of the town, is the Vitturi castle, the largest and best preserved of the renaissance fortresses in Kaštela. The castle is surrounded by a number of cafes, where you can enjoy a drink under the ancient trees with gorgeous views across the bay.
- The tower of Cambi, which, with its unique form, looms over the village
- The harbour, still busy on a sunny day. Fishing nets, oars and lanterns can still be found in both the harbour and adjacent streets.
- Next to the harbour is the main local square, great for having a drink and taking a rest in one of the cafes. In the summer months the square houses numerous public events.
- The fortress of Kaštilac has the unique appearance of a small island lying alongside the mainland. It resembles a fart floating peacefully on the sea. You can frequently find it on local paintings, and it boasts an irresistible opportunity for visitors and tourists. It was also one of the locations where the TV series Game of Thrones was filmed.
- Modern marina for nautical tourists
- In the vicinity of the modern parish church is an old village cemetery with the medieval chapel of St. Cosmas and Damien, which dates back to the 12th century.
- Near the chapel is an old oak tree, estimated to be over 700 years old and a protected natural monument.
- The old village is the best preserved historical site in Kaštela
- Riva, on the seafront, is the living heart of the village, especially in the summertime. It's main venue for all outdoor public events. It has numerous cafes, and is a pleasant place for socializing, both day and night.
- The market is a great place to buy produce from local fishermen and farmers.
- The peak of Kozjak is a welcoming alternative to the bustle of the people on the beaches and in the village, and the view from the top reveals a beautiful panorama of the bay of Kaštela and of central Dalmatia.
Kaštela's summer of culture and entertainment
- The Kaštelansko kulturno i zabavno ljeto - (Kaštela's summer of culture and entertainment) is held each year in many of Kaštela's attractive locations. There are a wide variety of cultural and entertainment events including exhibitions, concerts, theatrical shows, folklore festivals, summer courses, workshops and the fisihing festival. Try the local specialities at the parties in the squares and on the terraces where there is much to discover.
- Discover beautiful beaches, have a swim and relax with a cool drink in the shade next to the sea
- Take a stroll on the seafront in the late afternoon, enjoy the beautiful sunset and see the nightlife in Kaštela
- Take a hike to the peak of Kozjak (780 m.o.s.), and enjoy the beautiful view of the Kaštela bay, the island of Čiovo and Split
- Enjoy sports or activities like tennis, diving and fishing in a clear blue sea, or hiking in the nature surrounding the town.
- Olive oil - Kaštela prides itself as having one of the best quality olive oil in Dalmatia.
- Local wine - made from handpicked local grapes, excellent quality.
- Rakija - schnaps, made from a variety of fruits and homemade products (honey, figs, etc...).
- Prošek - local sweet liquor
- Dried figs - a local delicacy. Sweet, and great for getting a burst of energy.
- Fritule - also known as fritter, traditional sweet snack.
- Local handicraft - local artists, craftsmen and associations of people with special needs have a variety of handmade products. Good quality and not expensive 
There are a number of restaurants and fast food joints on the seafront all through Kaštela. If you take a walk or ask a local person you should have no problems finding one pretty fast. The food served is really good in almost all of them. Make sure to ask for local sea food specialties.
The are an abundance of cafes, both on the seafront and further away.
- Villa Siculi, Gabine 4, Kaštel Štafilić (luxurious villa for 12 people with large swimming pool, 70 meters from the beach, 10 min drive from Trogir, 20 min from Split, in a quiet location), ([email protected]), . from €300. edit
- Info board: phone: + 385 (0)21 232 044
- The UNESCO protected town of Trogir is just a 10 minute drive from Kaštela, and well worth visiting.
- The town of Split is 20 minutes drive, and perfect for a day trip.
- Salona - ancient Roman colony, one of the biggest towns of Roman Empire. It had a population of nearly 60,000 people. It was a capital of Roman province Dalmatia. Well preserved amphitheater, theater, basilica, cemetery and many other Roman buildings. Situated near town of Solin, 10-15 min bus ride from Kaštela.
- Hvar - A day trip by boat to this island is well worth the effort. Boats leave from Split five times a day in peak season (July–August), three times a day outside this period (a single trip costs about 42 kn to Stari Grad on Hvar). Hvar town is small but extremely attractive, with numerous large yachts moored in the harbour. If using the left luggage service ensure you thoroughly check the prices and conditions of use.
- Brač - An alternative could be the boat to the island of Brač which is just the other side of the water. Boats leave from Split up to 10 times daily and it takes you 1 hr to Supetar. The last ferry back to Split leaves at 10:45PM.
- Krka National Park  - one of eight national parks in Croatia. Enjoy in beautiful waterfalls and visit old monastery on the island Visovac.
- Plitvice National Park  - considered to be one of the most beautiful natural sights in Europe. Due to its natural beauty and significance, this system of 16 interlinked lakes and a large forest complex around it were set aside as a national park in 1949. In 1979 the park was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
- Horse Club  - in village called Donje Ogorje you can ride a horse in the nature. It will cost you 100 kn (13 €) for one hour. There is also an option for riding and sleeping in the nature for several days.
- Mpboats Charter Agency (Yacht Charter Agency Kastela), Franje Tuđmana 213, 21213 Kaštel Gomilica, ☎ 385 (0)91 37 44 217, . 0-24. Rent a boat or yacht to sail out from Kastela Marina for daily excursions to Adriatic islands and beaches. edit