In the Zadar nucleus traces of the past are everywhere: walls, towers, imposing gates… The most striking among the towers is Kapetanova kula (Captain’s Tower), while among the gates, Kopnena vrata (Land Gate) – a late Renaissance masterpiece. From the building which housed the governor’s office and the former armoury (Palace of the Great Captain) leads the path to the south-east, to the small picturesque port of Fosa next to the Land Gate.
The Land Gate was erected in the Renaissance style in 1543, according to the designs of Venetian architect Michele Sanmicheli, in the shape of a triumphal arch with three entrances. At the time they were the main entrance to the city. A wooden bridge on stone posts lead from the Land Gate to the Customs’ Gate (now part of a fish restaurant in the port). The middle arch of the Land Gate bears a sculpted image of a mounted St. Krševan (the coat of arms of the City of Zadar), and a monumental lion of St. Mark above it (the coat of arms of the Venetian Republic).
On the other side of the Land Gate (Kopnena vrata) was the Citadel (Citadela), the fortress from the 16th century, which defended the town from the land side. Along the port of Fosa leads a paved path by the monumental town walls, and ends on Obala Kralja Petra Kresimira IV, which is a park-promenade, about 1 km long, along the western side of the peninsula.