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With the completion of the Mala Kapela tunnel in June 2005, the A1 motorway between Zagreb and Dalmatia has become a complete, uninterrupted whole. Zadar is the first major stop on the highway, which proceeds south toward Split. Barring traffic congestion, especially on weekends, the trip between Zagreb and Zadar is doable in 2½ hours. That said, you can also easily get to Zadar by bus, whether from Zagreb, Rijeka, or Split, and rent a car there if necessary. As the Zadar bus station can be a chaotic place at times, especially in midsummer, you might want to rent a car for some excursions—to Murter, for example, which otherwise involves a somewhat complicated, time-consuming trip to or toward Sibenik with a transfer. But you'll be just fine without a car in and immediately around Zadar, as bus service is both good and affordable. How to get to Pag Island? By the Pag Bridge route, Pag Town (at the island's center) is within a one-hour drive from Zadar. One good option is to take two nights and take in Paklenica National Park, then drive another 25 minutes or so north along the coastal road toward Rab Island and Rijeka, and take the ferry from the village of Prizna—roughly midway between Rijeka and Zadar, just south of Rab Island—to Zigljen, in the north of the island (14 Kn per person, 89 Kn for a car); or do the same in reverse.
Avis (Zadar Airport, Zemunik, Zadar, 23222. 023/205-862. www.avis.hr.)
Hertz (Zadar Airport, Zemunik, Zadar, 23222. 023/348-400. www.hertz.hr.)
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