There was already plenty happening in Crikvenica in the Stone and Copper Ages, or at least this is suggested by findings from these periods. Over the centuries, the region became a hub of various languages and alphabets, and ruling powers changed as well as periods of war and peace. Cultures and civilisations extending back to ancient times came and went.
Here, where Crikvenica stands today, there was once a Roman check point “ad Turres”. This represented a key point on the road from Aquileia to Salonae between Tarsatica and Senia. After the fall of the Roman empire in the west, this region had to acknowledge domination by numerous monarchs, for example Emperor Nepos from Constantinople.
From the 7th century AD, Crikvenica was under Croatian rule until the Hungarian monarch took over the region in 1102. Despite all attempts at occupation and colonisation, the Croatians always retained their independence. Austrian and Hungarian rulers alternately took control over the following centuries, which is still noticeable today.
The famous dynasty of the Dukes of Frankopani ruled the region from 1225. In 1412, a Pauline monastery was built, and the old church was renovated and enlarged for the order: as a result, the core of Crikvenica was created. The name Crikvenica originates from the word “crikva”, which means “church” in Croatian. From 1692, the Croatian coastal land became part of Inner Austria and from 1749 was designated as Austrian coastal land. However, in 1786, the region officially became Hungarian coastal land once more. From 1809 to 1813, the region belonged to the French, and then subsequently fell to Austria again. It remained with Austria or Hungary until the end of the black-yellow monarchy.