The Ancient Serbian Krupa Monastery in Dalmatia

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The first time I visited Krupa Monastery was in the late eighties. I was just a kid then, and the world seemed so big and full of wonders.

Fast forward to the summer of 2023, and there I was again, standing in the same spot that had captured my imagination all those years ago.

Outside the Krupa Monastery Tower.
Outside the Krupa Monastery Tower

You see, I’m someone who’s always on the move, always looking for the next big adventure. But Krupa Monastery is different. It’s one of those rare places where I can just be.

Krupa church wall art and chandelier.
A rich chandelier and paintings on the walls
Cobbled monastery walk way.
Cobbled monastery walk way

I can sit by the Krupa river for hours, watching the water flow and the old stone mill that stands as a silent guardian of the past. In the monastery yard, time seems to slow down, and I find myself doing something I rarely do – sitting still, just taking it all in, and surprisingly, I don’t get bored.

Krupa River near the monastery.
Krupa River near the monastery

It’s hard to describe the feeling of being there. It’s peaceful, like when you’re sitting at home and everything is quiet and calm. And it’s beautiful in a way that makes you stop and look around, like when you see a stunning view or a really pretty picture.

What makes Krupa Monastery special to me is its ability to make me pause. In a life filled with constant movement and noise, this monastery, with its history and serene surroundings, offers a rare chance to just be still and enjoy the moment.

Fountain in Krupa monastery yard.
Fountain in the monastery yard

Whether it’s the gentle sound of the river, the sight of the ancient mill, or the quiet of the monastery yard, there’s something about this place that’s truly special.

Door to the courtyard at Krupa monastery.
Door to the courtyard

It’s like a hidden treasure, a peaceful spot in a busy world, where I can take a break from my usual fast-paced life and just enjoy the simple beauty of nature and history.

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About this Historical Croatian Site

Built by Bosnian monks under the patronage of King Milutin of Serbia in 1317, Krupa Monastery is one of the oldest in Croatia. Renovations in the 15th and 16th centuries gave it beauftilly gothic style windows. It’s also home to books collections that are centuries old, walls displaying painted frescoes by Serbian monk Georgije Mitrofanović, and a collection of famous treasures.

The Eastern Orthodox church inside the monastery is dedicated to celebrating the Feast of the Dormition of Theotokos which is basically the feast of the Mother of God.

How to get to Krupa Monastery?

There are only three ways to get to Krupa, regardless of the direction you’re coming from: organized tours, private transfer, and by car. If you’re driving by yourself, make sure to follow the guide below and avoid getting stuck on an unconstructed road.

Stone foot bridge to Krupa Monastery.
Bridge to Krupa Monastery

If you’re coming on a day trip from Zadar to Krupa Monastery, start by driving towards Benkovac. After Benkovac, head to Karin. The road to Karin is well-marked and easy to follow.

From Karin, your next stop is Obrovac. It’s important to stick to this route, especially if you’re using a navigation system like Google Maps.

Other roads might appear on the map, but they’re not paved and can be difficult to drive on.

Once you’re in Obrovac, follow the signs to Krupa Monastery. The route is straightforward from there but there’s a spot you definitely shouldn’t miss.

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On the way, you’ll pass a viewpoint of the Zrmanja Canyon. This place is worth a stop to take in the scenery and snap some photos. The view of the canyon is quite impressive.

If you’re traveling from the Plitvice Lakes, aim for Obrovac as your main waypoint.

From Obrovac, you can easily follow the signs to the monastery. This way, you’ll avoid the unpaved roads and have a smoother journey.

Things to See around Krupa Monastery

As mentioned earlier, you’ll pass the viewpoint of the Zrmanja Canyon, which is a must-see. But beyond that, there are other attractions you can explore.

One of the highlights is the Zrmanja waterfalls, located just about 15 minutes from Krupa Monastery. These waterfalls are as beautiful as the famous Krka waterfalls, but with one significant advantage – the entrance is free. This makes it a great spot for enjoying the natural beauty without any cost.

If you’re up for a bit of adventure, you can take a rafting trip on the Zrmanja River.

Another attraction you should see is Kudin most. This site adds to the historical and natural appeal of the region. It’s a great addition to your itinerary, especially if you’re already exploring the area around Krupa Monastery.

Of course, there are many other places nearby such as Paklenica National Park, Krka National Park, Maslenica bridge and you should visit Zadar if you didn’t plan to.

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Bio: Peter , The Amazing Traveler

Peter from The Amazing Traveler.
Peter from The Amazing Traveler

I am a European blogger passionate about exploring and sharing the world’s many wonders. Alongside my wife, I run several successful sites across various niches. Our latest venture, The Amazing Traveler, is dedicated to uncovering and promoting lesser-known destinations. We aim to inspire travel enthusiasts to explore beyond the usual tourist spots and discover hidden gems around the globe.

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Pinterest images of Cobbled walkways , wall art and tower building at Krupa Church Monastery.
Pinterest image of Krupa Monastery exteriors, fountain and cobbled courtyard.

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