A bustling port city with its Old Town built into the alleys of the 1600 year old Diocletian’s Palace, Split is full of cafes, restaurants and galleries. Split is the 2nd largest city in Croatia, and its history and atmosphere make it a one of a kind place to visit.

Split's central European location makes it an easy destination by air from most major cities as well as making it a perfect starting or ending point for an adventure.

Getting There

-Fly into Split Airport and take the airport bus 40 minutes into the city.  

-From Dubrovnik:

A catamaran which stops in Mljet, Korcula, Hvar, and Brac. Duration 4 hours 15 minutes. 190 kuna ($28 USD)

By car, the drive is beautiful along the coastline and takes approximately 3 hours. 

A bus which drives along the coastline, stops in the Neum Corridor in Bosnia & Herzegovina. Delays in the summer months are common from heavy traffic. Duration 4.5 hours. Approximately 150 kuna ($23 USD)

Tip #1: Keep your passport on you and not in your bags under the bus, as you will need to show it going through the Neum Corridor.

Walking around Diocletian's Palace - Old Town 

Diocletian’s Palace

You can’t travel to Split and avoid seeing Diocletian’s Palace as it is literally the Old Town of Split. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, the hallways of the palace are now filled with cafes and shops that stretch along the main waterfront. A great place to browse and explore the narrow alleys. Read here for more historical insight and what highlights to see. 

Tip # 2: Walk around Old Town at night, when it is not crowded and all the old buildings are lit up….it’s beautiful and very serene.

Tip # 3: To get a panoramic view of the palace and the city, climb to the top of the bell tower in the Cathedral Sveti Duje.

Old Town at night beautifully lit up

Take in the local life at the market

The Green Market (Pazar Market) is a lively fruit and vegetable market, east of the palace. Farmers from the surrounding areas of Split come into town everyday to sell their seasonal local produce from sunrise till 2pm. Locals come here to buy everything from fruits and vegetables, cured meats, cheeses and even kitchen supplies and clothing.

Tip # 4: Visit the market after 12pm when you can bargain for a lower price.

Tip # 5: Grab food from the market and set up a picnic by the waterfront.

Peskarija Market - see the fishmongers sell local catch of the day
Peskarija Market - see the fishmongers sell local catch of the day

The fish market or Peskarija market, is located in a square next to Marmontova Street. Fishmongers yell out their daily catch and locals come to buy the freshest seafood. It is open from 6:30am till 2pm daily.

Tip # 6: You won’t have to worry about any flies at the market, thanks to the smell from the underground sulfur springs.

Take in some local art

The Gallery of Fine Arts which was recently renovated, is a beautiful place to see the history of local Croatian art, from the 14th century to present day. Located in a former hospital just outside the palace’s northern walls.

Mestrovic Gallery, is a gallery showcasing the works of Croatia’s greatest sculptor, Ivan Mestrovic’s. Mestrovic is frequently compared to Rodin and the gallery is located inside his old summer home in Marjan Forest Park, a 20 minute walk from the city center. Even if you are not an art lover, the gallery is worth a visit just for the scenic views. Admission is 30 Kuna ($6 USD).

Tip # 7: Walk to the chapel to also see Mestrovic’s wooden carvings.

Tip # 8: Get 50% off admission with the Split Card. If you’re staying in Split for three days or more, this 70 Kuna ($10) card will give you free entry and discounts to museums and galleries.

View of Split from Marjan Hill

Take a break from the sightseeing and crowds

Just outside the city center is an undeveloped green oasis around the same size as New York City’s Central Park. It is a great place to escape the crowds of Split, with endless trails for running, walking, cycling, as well as swimming, sunbathing and rock climbing.

Tip # 9: Walk up to the top of Marjan hill to Telegrin Peak for sweeping views of the city and closeby islands. Worth the easy walk up!

Tip # 10: Take the city bus 12 for Bene which leaves every hour from the end of the Riva in front of the Sv. Frane church. Hop on and off the bus through the park.

Tip # 11: Explore the park by renting a bike for 15 Kuna/hour ($2/hour). Bike rentals are located at the Northern Entrance of the park.

Tip # 12: For a secluded quiet spot to go swimming, check out Kašjuni Beach.

From sandy to pebbly, the beaches in Split are very clean and calm. 

Watch a football match

Catch a Hajduk Split football match, they are Croatia’s 2nd best team after their rival Dinamo Zagreb. The stadium is within walking distance to old town and has great views of the water and mountains. They are not as famous as other European teams but the games are still lots of fun with the flares and rowdy locals cheering on their team.

Tip # 13: You can buy great tickets on the day of a match for around $10.

Watch the sunset

If you’re in Old Town during sunset grab a blanket and a bottle of wine and walk to the western end of the Riva, where the dock extends out into the harbor. It’s a quiet area away from the hustle and bustle of Old Town.

To get a view from above, check out the bar Dioklecijan. Walk passed the Hotel Vestibul Palace - follow the yellow arrows saying “Grill” and you will find the bar. Grab a cocktail, sit out on the terrace overlooking the waterfront and take in the sunset.

During the summer the younger locals will sit and drink around a popular spot called Matejuška, the old fisherman’s cove near the Riva. Pick up some beer from Mali dućan (‘Little Shop’) which has the largest selection of beers in town and mingle with the locals.

The waterfront at night

Wine tasting in Split

To get a little taste of Dalmatian wine visit the Klub Gurmana I Hedonista wine bar which is a 10 minute walk from the city center. The wine bar is inside a traditional stone building where the host speaks perfect English and serves great finger foods along with the wines.

Visit the town of Kastela 25 minute drive outside of Split, where Zinfandel is popular, and visit the Putalj Winery. You can visit on your own if you have a car or go on a wine tour.

Spend the day under the water

Walking around Split, you’ll notice all the dive shops and for good reason too. The coastline is surrounded by islands and reefs and the visibility is clear due to the calm waters. If you have more than a few days in Split - try a half day scuba diving trip.

There are endless amount of things to do in Split, not including the different day trips you can take from this beautiful city. So if you're planning a trip to Croatia, you should definitely consider Split one of your stops.