Petar Hektorović Castle
Petar Hektorović’s Tvrdalj, with its fishpond and a dove-cot over it, is the most famous building in Stari Grad. This renaissance poet built it throughout his entire life and it had the same importance for him as his literary work. There he realized his idea of a microcosms; a small, enclosed world where all divine creatures – fish, birds, herbs and people (himself, his friends, a holy woman, paupers and travellers) - had a space to live. The Tvrdalj is also a stone book – Hektorović carved more than twenty stone inscriptions in Latin, Italian and Croatian in its walls. One, which is in Italian, is his life motto: “Fede e realtà o quanto è bella!” ("Oh how lovely faith and reality are!").
Stari Grad plain
This large plain occupies the island' s central area. Its name kept changing with the successive arrival of new masters. First known by the Greeks as Chora Pharu, it became Ager Pharensis in Roman times and was later replaced by the medieval name of Campus Sancti Stephani (the Plain of St.Stephen). It is now known as Stari Grad Plain, and has sustained the life on the island for thousands of years. The Plain is in fact a cultured landscape, formed by thousands of years of human labour. Its ancient man-made features originate from 24 centuries ago when Greek colonist divided the Plain into rectangular plots of 1x5 stadia, (ca. 180x900m), each enclosed by drywall. The Plain was crisscrossed by major roads cutting through it in regular longitudinal and transversal directions. Today we can identify the point in the Plain from wich the Greek surveyor began his measuring located at a road intersection.
The Kabal peninsula, whose form resembles the fingers of a hand, is located in the north-western part of Stari Grad Bay. At the very entrance to the Bay is the Kabal cape - an eighty metre high rock - and on the end of the Bay is Stari Grad, one of the safest natural harbours in the Adriatic. During crystal clear days you will have the feeling of sailing into some kind of fjord. You will leave behind high hills that drop steeply into the sea on the southern part, and far away, in the depth of the bay, is the town of Stari Grad.
Stari Grad Museum
The Biankini Palace – Stari Grad Museum –was the neo-renaissance family home of the Biankini brothers dating back to 1896. Interior decorations from the period in which the palace was built have been preserved, whilst in the garden there is a century-old Deodar Cedar, which is of the same period as the building itself. Museum collections on the ground floor and upstairs tell us the tales of Stari Grad’s long history. The hydroarcheologic collection is in fact a tale about the sinking of a merchant ship full of amphorae which, in the 4th and 5th century, was sailing from North Africa to Pharia of the late antiquity period.The archaeological collection collection of artefacts tell us about the life of ancient Stari Grad – from the 5th century B.C. to the 7th or 8th centuries A.D. The Gelineo Bervaldi Salon invokes the times of the patrician salons from the end of 18th and the beginning of 19th century, whilst the Kapetanska soba (the Captain’s room) from the second part of 19th century reminds us of the time when Stari Grad was a living port with large sailing ships. The works of art of two painters from Stari Grad - Juraj Plančić and Bartol Petrić – together with other 20th century Croatian painters can be seen in the permanent exhibition of the Juraj Plančić Gallery.
Of the numerous small squares in Stari Grad, the most picturesque one is theŠkor Square. Almost like a theatre coulisse (which it actually becomes during the summer cultural events), this square was formed , during the 17th and 18th centuries from a stretch of shallow water. It was once home to a shipyard which was covered and the square took its name from this (škor from škver, in Dalmatian dialect, means shipyard). This curved space where mythical Dalmatia lives is enclosed by typical dalmatian working-class houses with picturesque luminari (roof windows) as well as sulari and skalinade (stone terraces with staircases).