What To See At & How To Get To Klis Fortress: Game Of Thrones Croatia

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Post author SJ

Written by our local expert SJ

Sarah-Jane has lived in Croatia for 10+ years. SJ, as she is known, has been traveling the Balkans & beyond since 2000. She now shares her passion for traveling with her husband & kids.

Here is how to get to Klis Fortress, which lies just outside of the city of Split, perched atop a cliff near a village with the same name. It is one of many fortresses and strongholds that dot the rugged mountains along the Dalmatian coast.

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Klis fortress is located Perched above the village of Klis near Split, Croatia. Tvrdava Klis as it is known in Croatian is more than just a medieval marvel. Here, you can stand on the same ground where Croatia’s kings once plotted their reigns and where “Game of Thrones” was filmed.

Getting to Klis Fortress is a breeze, especially if you have a sense of adventure.

If you’re driving from Split, get ready for a scenic route filled with cityscapes, mountain roads, and a hint of anticipation as you approach the fortress. Not a fan of driving? No problem. Hop on a local bus, like the #22.

Klis Fortress isn’t just a place; it’s an experience that transports you through time. From its origins as an Illyrian stronghold to its pivotal role in the Ottoman wars, every nook of this castle has a tale to tell.

Let’s go on a historical adventure to a place that has been guarding the Dalmatian hinterland for over two millennia.

Getting To The Fortress Of Klis, Croatia

Getting to Klis Fortress is pretty straightforward, whether you’re driving yourself or hopping on a bus from Split. Plus, if you’re a Game of Thrones fan, I suggest that you book a tour specifically designed to show you the spots featured in the show.

Travel Options from Split to Klis

So, you’re in Split and looking to check out the majestic Klis Fortress? You’ve got a couple of options:

  • By Car. If you’re the road-trip type, grab a rental and punch in Klis Fortress on your GPS. It’s only about a 30-minute ride, and you’ll be taking in both city views and mountain roads along the way – the best of both worlds!
  • By Ubder. If you do not want to drive, book an Uber, it won’t cost more than about €20
  • By Bus. Want to cost the cheapest route? You can get to the fortress of Klis by taking the local Bus #22 from the stop near the National Theater in Split. It’ll set you down at the Klis Megdan stop. Keep in mind it usually takes about half an hour, but the schedule might be a bit iffy, so plan accordingly. Check this website for the current bus timetable from Split to Klis

How To Get to Klis Fortress From Zadar

From Zadar, you also have two options to get to Klis. The first one is the same—a drive via the E65 highway, which takes just over an hour and a half.

Your second option is to join a group tour from Zadar to the Split Fortress Klis. Although you won’t have as much freedom on a group tour, it’s still a great option if you’re just headed there as a day trip from Zadar anyway.

Entrance and Tour Information

Once you’ve arrived, there’s a small fee to enter the fortress. It’s worth every penny for the views and the sheer historical vibe of the place.

When To Visit

Tvrdava Klis is open daily. Swing by every day. Whether you’re an early riser ready to catch the sunrise or looking for that perfect midday sun to light up your photos, you will need to have some euro ready to enter.

Tickets Prices

  • Adults: dive into the past without breaking the bank for just 10€
  • Young Explorers (up to 15 years old): embark on this journey for a mere 3€

What’s Included? Your ticket is your key to unlocking:

  • A fascinating journey through the Interpretation Centre at Mejdan Square. Get ready to be transported back in time and immerse yourself in the fortress’s rich history
  • Full access to explore the majestic Klis Fortress. Feel the breeze, take in the breathtaking views, and stand where heroes (both historical and fictional) have stood

Operating Hours

  • Summer: 8 AM – 8 PM
  • Winter: 9 AM – 4 PM
  • The last entrance is typically 30 minutes before closing.

Remember that prices can bob up and down, so double-check for the most up-to-date info right before your trip.

Game Of Thrones Tours

 If you’re a die-hard fan of the series, you’ve got to check out one of the themed tours at the fortress of Klis.

You’ll walk the same grounds as your favorite characters. Trust me, you’ll want to bring your camera (and maybe a cloak, just for kicks).

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Historical Significance of Klis Fortress

You’re about to discover how Klis Fortress is not just a breathtaking sight but a cornerstone of Croatian history. It’s a place where you can literally walk through the ages, from ancient times to the tumultuous medieval era.

A Blast from the Past: The Illyrian Beginnings

Way back in the 2nd century BC, Klis Fortress kicked off as a cool hangout for the Illyrian tribe known as the Dalmatae. Fast forward a bit, and the Romans roll in around 9 AD, taking over and giving it some fancy names like “Anderium” or “Andetrium,” then “Clausura.” This spot has been through more name changes than a rock star, finally settling on “Klis.”

The Croatian Era: Dukes, Knights, and Templars, Oh My!

After Rome said its goodbyes, the Croats turned Klis Fortress into the it-place, making it the home base for the first Dukes of the Croatian Duchy. This place was so cool, even the Croatian royal family of Trpimirovic wanted in. But, like all good things, their reign came to an end, and the Knights Templar briefly crashed at the castle pad.

Turbulent Times: Siege Warfare and Architectural Makeovers

Enter the Mongols and Ottomans, trying to crash the party. But it was the Venetians who eventually took the keys in the mid-1600s, giving the fortress a major facelift. Klis was rocking the Venetian vibe until Napoleon decided to remix the political landscape in 1797.

Defensive Architectural Marvel: The Unbreakable Klis Fortress

With its killer location on a rocky outcrop and triple-threat stone walls, Klis was the medieval equivalent of a superhero fortress. Its superpower? A strategic spot that kept an eye on the route to Split, making sure friends could drop by but enemies knew to keep out.

Living Legacy: The Town of Klis

Thanks to its badass defensive skills and prime real estate, a village popped up around the fortress during Venetian times. Fast forward to today, and that village has grown up into the town of Klis, still basking in the shadow of its monumental guardian.

Illyrian Roots to Medieval Glory: Klis Through the Ages

Starting off on the down-low as an Illyrian outpost, Klis quickly leveled up under Croatian rule, becoming the go-to defense against the Ottoman Empire. This place wasn’t just a castle; it was a statement of resistance and the Croatian spirit of never giving up.

Ottoman Footprints and Venetian Stilettos

The Turks might have sneaked in for a bit, but Klis wasn’t about to let them redecorate without a fight. Then the Venetians swung by, leaving their stylish mark and ensuring that every stone of Klis told a story of battles, culture, and a whole lot of history mingling.

Go To Klis Fortress For The Architectural Features

When you set your eyes on Klis Fortress, you’ll instantly get why this spot was the bee’s knees for defense – its architecture has both brawn and brains, mixing tough walls with a smart place on the hill.

Defensive Design and Strategic Location

The whole setup of Klis Fortress is like the ultimate game of king of the hill, where it’s pretty clear that the fortress is rocking that crown.

Strategically perched on a rocky ridge of the eponymous mountain pass, it’s got three cheers for defense, thanks to being pretty much inaccessible from three sides.

This natural advantage meant attackers had to scratch their heads for a way up, often ending up as sitting ducks for the defenders’ arrows and stones.

Now, the fortress wasn’t just hugging the cliffs for the views – although those are epic, by the way.

Being smack in the middle of the pass, it acted like a gatekeeper between the Mediterranean and the Balkans.

And let me tell you, this wasn’t just any gate – it was more like the bouncer of the Adriatic, deciding who gets to pass through the Dalmatian hinterland.

Major Attraction Structures & Ruins

So, you’re roaming through the fortress and it’s like walking through a history book, but way cooler.

Medieval Fortress vibes are strong here, with remnants that shout tales of clashes and crusades. You’ll stumble upon a maze of buildings, each with its own backstory – the barracks, the chapel, you name it.

And the ruins, oh, the ruins. They’re the kind you can almost hear whisper the stories of days gone by.

It’s not every day you get to trot around structures that have seen the best part of two millennia. Makes you wonder how many footsteps, secrets, and echoes of past chats are embedded in those stones.

“Game of Thrones” and Klis Fortress

Hey, you’re in for a treat if you’re a Game of Thrones enthusiast! Klis Fortress is not only a majestic medieval stronghold but also a star in the series, doubling as the city of Meereen. So, buckle up as we unveil where your favorite scenes came to life.

Klis as the City of Meereen

Remember the city Daenerys Targaryen famously conquers to free the slaves? That’s Meereen, and guess what? It’s filmed right here at Klis Fortress.

When you walk through the fortress’s gates, you’re literally stepping into the footsteps of the Mother of Dragons.

It’s pretty surreal, and you’ll recognize the sandy-colored stone walls and the panoramic views minus the CGI, of course.

Filming Locations and Fan Excursions

Game of Thrones has turned Klis Fortress into a pilgrimage site for fans, and it’s easy to see why.

Picture this: the fortress’s ancient walls, the dramatic battlements, all those winding staircases—it’s like you’ve been dropped into the world of Westeros.

Want to relive the epic battles and plot twists of Meereen? There are dedicated fan tours that’ll take you through the key shooting spots. You can almost hear the Unsullied marching down the cobblestones!

For a truly immersive experience, swing by the fortress on a guided Game of Thrones tour, or if you prefer going solo, just hop on Bus #22 from Split bus station.

It’s a cool 30-minute journey into another realm… I mean, to an iconic filming location. Either way, it’s a must-do for your Thrones-themed adventure.

Visitor Experience and Activities

While visiting Klis Fortress, you’re in for a treat with not only a slice of history but some stunning vistas and intriguing tours. It’s like stepping back in time with an added perk of mesmerizing landscapes.

Guided Tours and Exhibitions

Exploring Klis Fortress often comes to life under the guidance of a knowledgeable tour guide.

Opt for a Guided Tour to dive into the rich history; some tours even theme their experiences around Game of Thrones, given the fortress’s role as a filming location for the series.

Exhibitions inside the fortress showcase artifacts and tell tales of the past, making the stone walls echo with history.

Viewpoints and Photographic Spots

Your camera is going to love it here. The fortress is a haven for photographers with its Viewpoints offering panoramic views of the Split area and the Adriatic Sea.

Every angle is a new discovery, whether it’s the rugged landscape or the ancient stone – it’s a picturesque journey all around.

Facilities and Accessibility

Now, let’s chitchat about what you’ll find once you’re there. The fortress is a bit of a climb, so wear comfy shoes.

The path winding up to the fortress can be steep and a tad challenging if you’re not expecting it. But hey, the view from the top? Worth it, trust me.

  • Parking: There’s free parking nearby, so no frets about where to stow your ride.
  • Restrooms: Available on site, so you can freshen up after your ascend.
  • Accessibility: It’s an old fortress and can be a bit rough underfoot with uneven surfaces, so it might be tricky for folks with mobility issues.

Grab a bottle of water, slap on some sunscreen, and enjoy stepping back in time at this majestic stronghold!

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