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Split

split-rivaSplit is Croatia’s second largest city and Middle Dalmatia’s urban, cultural and traffic centre. The Airport and the ferry harbour is making Split one of the most important hub in Croatia for people visiting Dalmatia or the Island of Brac, Hvar and Vis, where daily car ferry and fast ferries connect them to the main land. 

Split it selves is also an important tourist city, the City of Split has great focus on issues which can improve the experience for the visitors, so large sums are invested in infrastructure and hotels to ensure that Split can accommodate the increasing number of visitors. 

Split started to develop from Diocletian’s palace, more than 1700 years ago, today listed on UNESCO World heritage list. The town lives slowly, you could have feeling that each day is holiday, coffee bars are always full. Even part of town, waterfront “riva” is also named “Split’s living room”. 

Development of industry in northern part of town did not ruin its natural look and beauties. You can swim everywhere, from beaches around Marjan toward south. Especially nice is beach is the Bacvice sand beach, where the yearly World championship in picigin takes place. 

Split is very good connected  with the world, especially after highway Zagreb-Split was finished. It takes only 4 hours from Zagreb now. Exit to Split is in Dugopolje.

Except highway, there is also panoramic local road toward east and west from Split. We recommend this road (with beautiful views), if you are not in a hurry. 

Split’s airport is in Kastela, which is about 25km away from Split, Airbus bus leaves several times a day between centre and Airport. The Rail, bus station, and the ferry harbour are placed in town centre. 

History of Split: 

Around 1700 years ago, in year 295. Roman imperator Gaius Valerius Aurelius Diocletianus started to built his luxury palace on the place where today Split is. It was planned to be for him to enjoy his “retirement”. After his death, palace was used by important roman persons. In 7th ct. AD people from the city Salona escaped to the palace, as the Avars and Slavs attached there city. 

From this time on the palace started to live like real town. They also changed its formation by their needs, so today’s shape is not original as it was made by Diocletian. Ironically, in this period the main cathedral in the palace was named Cathedral of St. Dujam, a Christian that was prosecuted by Diocletian.

split-diocletian-palace

The town started to expand intensive outside palace walls in 10th ct. In the 11th and 12th ct Split was ruled by Croatian kings and at the beginning of 12th ct. by Croatian-Hungarian kings. 

Big progress and most shining period for Split were in 13th and 14th century, this was time of freedom – Split was independent commune (civitas Spaleti). The oldest example of town regulation is saved from this period (1312.). In this period new town walls where built around parts of town outside the palace, and these walls was connected to palace walls. 

In year 1420 the city fell under Venetian rule, until 18th ct. which was a great periode for Split, in economic and urban sense. The Cultural scene was very expressed, in this period the poet Marko Marulic and his friends, also Juraj Dalmatinac was working in Split at that time. 

The Period of peace and progress was interrupted when Turks won Klis fortress, and Split had to reform defending system. New towers was constructed by the town gates.In 18th ct. Split came under Austro-Hungarian rule. 

After 1st World war, Split became a more and more important administrative, cultural and economical centre, in this period the number of inhabitants increased rapidly. The Town became better connected with mainland, in year 1925. where a railway to Zagreb was built. The industrial parts of town grew too, but in 2nd World war Split was bombard heavily so it all stopped. 

After the war, Split wake up surprisingly fast and become one of most known symbols of Croatia in world today.

Cultural:

The cultural and entertainment offer in Split is very rich, especially during the summer period when the area around the Palace houses offers an increasing number of events including drama, operas and concerts. Also, very important role “plays” the Croatian national theatre, with rich program through whole year.

Most important and known cultural symbol of Split is the Diocletian’s palace, imposing building older than 1700 years. It was built for emperor and his servants. It was pretty changed through the centuries. But main streets, lots of smaller streets with stone houses, charming restaurants, galleries, they still give you feel old times atmosphere.

Beside palace, other parts of town are also valuable to see, for example, older parts: Varos on western side and Radunica on eastern side of palace.

Old defending tower in Gripe, the Bishop’s palace, church of St. Frane, Marmontova street and Mestrovic’s mausoleum are just few of really great peaces of human work.

What to see?

We recommend the following cultural and entertainment offers in Spilt.

Cultural:

  • splitDiocletian’s palace – in town centre
  • Old parts of town – Varos on west, and Radunica on east side of Diocletian’s palace
  • Solin (Salona) the old roman settlement 3 km outside of Split.
  • Museums in Split
  • Ethnographic Museum
  • Museum of Marine History
  • The Mestrovic Gallery
  • Fortress Klis, 8 km outside of Split, (Photo enthusiast have to go here.)
  • The Split Churches.
  • Monument in the centre of Split

Entertainment:

  • Park Marjan, the green oasis of Split, the park has Nature pats, playgrounds, small Zoo and numerous small beaches.
  • City tours, buses living from harbour.
  • Concerts in the old town, during summer almost every evening live music can be found.
  • In driving distance from Split, Rafting, hill climbing, horseback riding and numerous other activities can be found. (Call us to find out more about excursion and action activities).
  • Towns in nearby with beautiful nature and historical remains: Trogir, Omiš

Beaches:

Bacvice, sand beach in middle of Split (can be very crowded during the summer)

Beaches around Marjan hill

split-beach

Beaches in Omis direction

Special recommendation for families with kids is the beach in Supetar on the Island of Brac, ferry landing point is about 500 meters from beach.

Restaurants:

The main part of the restaurant in Split offers a typical Mediterranean cuisine with some domestic specialities like e.g. cevapcici (meat roles with spices), typically Mediterranean inspired Pizza and fish dished are also part of the menu offered.

In most restaurants a meal for two people including a glass of wine will cost around 120 KN (17 Euro).

In the Split area we recommend the following restaurants. (With our subjective ratings)

Bistro Black Cat:

International Cuisine, excellent Salads, Mexican and Asian Dished in the morning, delicious breakfast with American pancakes are served.

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Restaurant Maslina:

Italian inspired kitchen, great pasta dished, but also excellent pizzas and meat dished, the gorgonzola sauce is outstanding.

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Restaurant Dalmatino:

Traditional Dalmatian restaurant, offering local dished and Pizza’s, at one of the best situated terraces in the Split area.

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Accommodation in Split:

During the last decade lots of old stone house inside the palace walls have been renovated and (re)-opened as small hotels or high end accommodation, which of course have made prices increase, but there is places accommodation to find at an affordable price, be aware that early booking is required. If it is not a must that the accommodation is places inside the old town, the following city areas can be recommend, Varos, which is next to the old town, Bacvice is with in walking distance of the old town.  Accommodation in Split also include some newly renovated and build hotels like the raddission blu resort and Hotel Luxe, of course there is also a number of old style city hotels available.

Entertainment and nightlife:

Split offers everything what you need in terms of nightlife.

A typical night would start in the Diocletian palace, where you find numerous original bars with outside serving in the small streets; these bars are open until 1. After this you would have to move on to one of the larger discothèques – Bacvice or Vanilla which are the most popular ones.

We recommend the following bars:

Café Puls, in Diocletian Palace

This bar can be found in the old town, where small table are places on the stairs going up hill, the audience is main young people in the age 25-35.

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Café Gaga, in Diocletian Palace

This bar can be found in the old town; here you would often find live music served in the old yard in front of the café. Here lots of student likes to hang out as prices are very moderate.

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LVXOR, on the Peristil in the Diocletian Palace

This bar is situated directly at the Peristil at the foot of the Cathedral Sv. Duje, just above the entrance to the Palace basement; here you often find nice piano or live music in very relaxing ambient. – This place if perfect for enjoying a glass of red wine. 

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Shopping:

Split of course also offers you everything in terms of shopping, from the small local market to very big shopping malls.

From a pricing perspective local produced product and souvenirs are very cheap, international brands are often more expensive here do to import tax,

Grocery Market: 

In Split there are 5 or 6 grosser markets, the main market can be found just at the eastern entrance to Diocletian palace; here you find fresh selection of the seasons vegetables and fruits. At the east side of the market you can find copy product like clothes etc.

Fish market:

In the middle the main shopping street Marmontova you can visit the fish market, especially in the earlier morning hours it is very interesting to watch the old ladies selling the fish and you might find some great picture motives.

Shopping Malls:

In Split there are 4 major shopping malls

  • Joker Center – 1 km from Centre
  • Mercator   - in the suburbs of Split - Direction Trogir
  • Emmazetta - in the suburbs of Split - Direction Trogir
  • City Center One - in the suburbs of Split

Supermarkets - the following supermarket chains has shops in Split

Billa, Lidl, Tommy, Metro, Kaufland, Kerum, Konzum

Practical information:

On this page you can find number which might be useful during your stay in Split.

Doctor      (021) 481 060

Dentist      (021) 489 428

Police      (021) 307 111

Post      (021) 342 400

Taxi      (021) 347 777

Bus station      (060) 327 777

Jadrolinija       (021) 338 333

Tourist board      (021) 348 600

How to get to Split:

By Car:  take the A1 motorway from Zagreb to Split, exit the highway at the Dugopolje exit, from here there is about 10 km to the city center.

By Plane: Nearest airport is the Split Airport, which is about 25 km outside of Split, from the Airport you have the following transfer options to get to Split (All prices below are rough ESTIMATES, prices depend on several factors, like time of year, day of travelling etc.)

  • Airport Bus –  leaves several times a day from Airport to city centre, price per person 30 kn.
  • Taxi – price for a taxi around 300-350 kn, remember to agree on a fixed price before leaving the airport. 
  • Pre-booked Transfer – price of transfer 1-3 person’s app. 260-280 Kuna, 4-8 persons price should be around 300 Kuna.
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