Not more than a ten-minute walk from the old town of Nin, the oldest Croatian royal town, there is a very special place. Special to all the people who have ever lived in this area, especially their family members who have ever worked in a place like this - a salt works.
Located in the shallow lagoon north of Zadar, the town of Nin is not only surrounded by kilometers-long sandy beaches, but also by the salt pans. In past times, the prosperity of this region was based on the salt production. The whole story actually began in ancient times, during the Roman period. People from this area have been collecting salt here for over 1500 years now. For them, salt was not just a food seasoning, something they would put on a table or store in a kitchen cupboard... It was a way of living.
The Nin salt works was closed down in the 15th century by the Venetians and remained so until the mid-20th century when the present-day company was established, still using traditional production methods, meaning that salt here is produced in a traditional and natural way, where s human hand is an irreplaceable tool. Furthermore, this is the only ecological salt works in Croatia, i.e. they produce salt in the ecological way, which is also certified by the European Union.
Thanks to its favorable geographical position, the technology of the salt production in Nin uses all the local benefits - seawater, sunshine, winds. If the weather is nice, the production starts in July and lasts through October. For the production like this, the climatic conditions have to be nothing but perfect, ideal. The Nin salt has a high percentage of iodine and is among the best-quality salts not only iThe Flower of Salt (Salt Flower; Fleur de Sel) is the highest quality and the healthiest type of salt and this is something the Nin salt works is very proud of. Rich in minerals and having positive effects on human health, the Nin salt flower is highly appreciated. Known as ‘the caviar’ among other types of salt, the Nin salt flower is the flower of health and is used not only to flavor food, but also finds it purpose in the cosmetic industry, chocolate and other delicacies production, etc. While the ordinary salt accumulates at the bottom of the salt pan, the salt flower stays on the seawater surface, like the crystal flower petals. Being so delicate, it is harvested manually and very gently, using special wooden sieves, in the early morning and the late evening hours.n Europe, but in the world. The Adriatic sea, sun and the wind coming from the nearby Velebit mountain help the hard-working people here to produce a very precious gift of nature. This salt will not only make your food taste better, but it will also improve your health.
Walking around the salt pans, visitors also have the opportunity to learn more about the unique flora and fauna of the area. So, the nature lovers will enjoy seeing and taking photos of some rare and endemic plant and animal species. Also, since the Romans were the first to harvest salt here, touring the Nin salt works you will find some Roman remains.
The Museum of Salt and the House of Salt are also a part of the tour, making together really unique tourist attractions where you can learn all about their ancient tradition of salt production, see the tools and equipment used in the process, buy a hand-made chocolate or cookies with salt flower (yummy!), or simply enjoy the ambience.
Every year in August, the Festival of Salt takes place here, giving the visitors the opportunity to participate in the salt production and engaging children in various workshops.
So, if you are looking for a way to spice up a bit your stay in the Zadar region, do not take all this with a pinch of salt - take it for real and let us do the rest.