Bars fill on the seafront promenade Obala Prvoboraca before clubbers drive off for the main destination nightspots of Vodice or Primošten – or make for the Inside Club nearer town. The recently renovated Solaris compex, 6km away, also has beach bars that are pulling the crowds. Southeast in Vidici, there’s the Majstor & Margarita cafe, inspired by Mikhail Bulgakov’s novel, for a themed evening with a literary twist.
Exactly what central Šibenik needed, this chic but convivial wine bar and design shop provides a great selection of Croatian wines with a particularly strong showing from local boutique wineries – notably Bibich from the hills above Skradin just inland. It’s also a great place to sample herb-infused rakijas and other indigenous spirits. While you’re sipping, peruse the range of accessories by Croatian designers. The location is ideal; in the heart of old Šibenik but not too close to the tripper-thronged cathedral.
Set beside the Šubićevac tennis courts (and well worth a visit if you’ve just dined at the nearby Uzorita restaurant), Godimento bridges the gap between snug local café and energetic weekend DJ-bar better than anywhere else in Šibenik. Curving white walls, discreet neon lighting and zebra-print upholstery certainly give the place an upmarket clubby feel. However the place’s friendly informality helps to bring out the fun-loving rather than the fancy. Expect an RnB-to-House music policy, reasonably-priced bottled beers and a choice of Croatian rakijas.
Few novels seem better suited to inspiring the theme of a night out than Mikhail Bulgakov’s Master and Margarita, the surreally subversive tale of the Devil’s arrival in Moscow accompanied by a talking cat. Southeast of central Šibenik in Vidici, this café established by Bulgakov obsessives is decked out in decked out in devilish dark reds; posters advertising past theatre adaptations of Bulgakov’s novel adorn the walls. Location in a curved ground-floor corner of a building gives it an extra twist of conviviality, with a semi-circular bar perfect for propping your elbows on, and an arc of pavement seating out front.
Despite being subjected to a decidedly chintzy makeover by new management in 2011, Moderato Cantabile (still known to many of the locals by its previous name of Europa) remains the most popular of Šibenik’s daytime venues for a coffee-and-cake-assisted rendezvous. The sizeable tree-shaded terrace fills up fast in spring and summer; while the secluded smoking section to the back of the bar comes into its own in winter.
A younger clientele munches on pepper, cheese or truffle steaks, or one of the gnocchi or lasagne dishes. In the morning, it’s a café; at night, a cocktail bar. The terrace is a pleasant and shady place, embellished by a mural of a braying donkey, and there are two cosy bars up a steep flight of stone stairs. On the second floor is an intimate, four-tabled, wooden-roofed balcony with views of the square and its Gothic-Renaissance church.