Castle Vitturi is located in Kaštel Lukšić and is one of the best examples of Kaštela fortifications.
Kaštela castles built during the 15th and 16th centuries served for the defense purpose of the local peasants and as holiday residences for noble families from Split and Trogir.
Nowadays, Castle Vitturi is a cultural center and the seat of several local institutions.
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4. Castle today
Vitturi Castle stands in Kaštel Lukšić, one of the seven settlements that make the town of Kaštela. The castle and its surroundings form the core of the settlement and represent the old town. You can visit the castle built on the coast with the southern walls laid in the sea by walking along the promenade.
After the fall of Bosnia to Ottoman rule in 1463, Dalmatia was threatened by increasing Turkish incursions. At that time, Dalmatia was ruled by Venice, and their administration decided to build several fortifications throughout Dalmatia, including Split and Zadar.
For the same reason, the aristocracy of Split and Trogir began to build forts on their land to protect peasants in the agricultural area between the two cities. The area around the fort had houses and a large wall surrounding them, which protected them from possible attacks.
By the 17th century, 17 fortifications were built in this area, hence the name of the town - Kaštela (castles).
Brothers Nikola and Jerolim Vitturi, two nobles from Trogir, asked the local doge in 1487 for permission to build their fortress. They were obliged to build a settlement and a wall around the settlement to protect the peasants from Ottoman attacks. Trogir's doge Carlo Pesaro granted their request.
The construction lasted for many years and was funded by the Venetian doge. Domestic peasants and workers also contributed to the work.
Finally, the building of the castle was completed in 1564.
In honor of that, in the courtyard gallery, there is an inscription written in stone which reads: "Brothers Jacob and Jerolim Vutturi built it with their funds in 1564. "
Until 1943, the castle was home to the Michieli-Vitturi family, who held high positions in the Venetian army and administration during the 18th century.
The castle consists of a large central courtyard surrounded by two-story buildings on the south side. The second-floor windows and the south-facing balcony have Renaissance decoration.
The south wall laid in the sea has an emergency exit to which ships can dock. The north wall with two towers is separated from the mainland by a moat filled with seawater and a wooden bridge above it. The bridge could be raised in the event of an attack. Later, it was replaced by a stone bridge after the danger of possible attacks passed.
In 1561, brothers Jacob and Jerolim remodeled the castle and added a two-story Renaissance gallery along the defensive walls and Renaissance windows on the first floor.
Stone fragments of olive and grape processing machines are proof that the castle had an economic and production significance in addition to its defensive role.
The castle was restored to its original appearance when reconstruction work was carried out from 1993 to 2001.
Today, Vitturi Castle is the cultural center of the town of Kaštela, where concerts, exhibitions, and performances take place.
Furthermore, the castle acts as the seat of the Museum of the Town of Kaštela and the local tourist board where you can learn many interesting things and get local tourist information during your visit to Kaštela.