Modern cities don’t get more historic than Split, Croatia. Its stretch of coastal land has been in demand for thousands of years, primarily due to its desirable coastal climate and naturally-fortified terrain.
Rugged mountains and inland waters of the Adriatic Sea surround the picturesque port city of Split. Shipbuilding, goods and passenger transport, and fishing have sustained the region’s economy for centuries.
In Split’s diverse cityscape, bustling boardwalks and contemporary galleries stand amid Roman palaces and 1,500-year-old limestone structures. The city’s dining scene is as varied as its sights, and as Croatia’s cultural hub, Split is also home to an array of museums and galleries and boasts a bumping music scene.
Split is an easy-to-access city, and its transportation networks align with its big-city status. The Split Airport welcomes regional, continental, and international flights, and the Split Suburban Railway services stops along the city’s northern coast. And when a stay extends for more than a day, the elegant yet eclectic lodging options in Split don’t disappoint.
Fun Fact: Split is said to have gotten its name from the Spanish broom plants (locally known as brnistra) that grow in the city’s hillsides.
Things to do in Split
Slip into Split’s seaside setting, and you’re in for a treat. As the capital city of Croatia’s Dalmatia region, Split features beaches, exotic eateries, and ancient sites sure to impress even the most seasoned history-driven explorers.
Stay awhile, and you can split your overnights between boutique hotels with balconies overlooking the city and residence-style lodging with rooftop pools and sea views. The days, though, should be reserved for experiencing Split’s top attractions.
Shop like a local at Split’s Green Market (also called Pazar). Fresh produce, meats, and cheeses are offered at this daily market. Be sure to show up with your best haggling game; prices here are often negotiable.
Simmer on the sandy shores of Bačvice Beach. Stay for an hour or a day – the beach features restrooms and showers, and numerous dining options are nearby.
Delve into Split’s shipbuilding history at the Croatian Maritime Museum.
Take in the serene sights of Sustipan, a lush, sprawling park on the city’s southwestern edge.
Sneak through Street Let Me Pass, the narrowest road in Europe. Claustrophobics, beware; the street is wide enough to accommodate one average-sized adult at a time.
Splash into the scenery with a Split sea kayak tour.
Dine on local cuisine like ćevapi (grilled minced meat) at Ba!Će.
Wind down with a Karlovačko beer or, for something sweeter, a glass of prošek, one of Croatia’s most popular dessert wines.
Transit Options in Split
Luggage Storage in Split
Whether you’re here for the pristine beaches and spectacular scenery or it’s all about business during your stay, a trip to Split is sure to impress. And seaside vibes don’t end in this sparkling city; other towns in the Dalmatia region have a lot to offer, too.
While exploring Dalmatia’s best attractions, don’t get bogged down by bags. Find Bounce luggage storage near Split, and you can secure your gear until you’re ready for it.
Attractions and activities near Split
Klis Fortress: This 2,000-year-old castle was constructed in the mountains that tower over Split. A scenic 20-minute bus ride separates Split from the fortress, and tourist traffic here tends to be moderate. Visit Klis Fortress, and you can wander through stone corridors, stand on cliffside ledges, and take in amazing views of the countryside. Aside from structural restorations, minimal modifications have been made to the castle over the centuries, and visitors are free to roam throughout. Game of Thrones fans may recognize the towering mountainside structure; Klis Fortress’ ancient lines and imposing presence made it an ideal, “plug-and-play” filming location. Both TV-show-themed and standard guided tours are offered, too, so visitors can get a little extra insight into the property and its fascinating past.
Diocletian’s Palace: For some Roman ruins immersion, don’t miss this 4th-century fortification. When it was constructed, the multi-purpose property simultaneously served as a royal retreat, a center for ceremonies, and a military camp. Over 200 buildings are housed within the palace walls, and there’s much to explore during a visit. Within Diocletian’s Palace, medieval meets modern. Here, Roman architectural remnants meld with contemporary construction, transitioning the palace into one of the city’s main hubs, with residences, restaurants, and shops planted throughout the sprawling property. Top spots to check out here include the Riva seafront walk, the palace’s four distinct gates, and the Cathedral of Saint Domnius. Below the palace, you’ll find the well-preserved Diocletian Palace Substructures. In ancient times, the space was used for storage and at times...sewage. Now, cultural events and souvenir shops are often held within these cavernous, subterranean rooms.
Marjan Forest Park: Flanking Split’s western edge, this diverse greenspace holds some of the city’s best vantage points, hiking trails, and historical structures. The park can be accessed on foot via the Marjan Hill Stairs or from the charming Varos Neighborhood. Before you hit the hills, drop off your extra bags at a Split luggage storage site so you can enjoy this natural gem bag-free. The hike takes about 30 minutes to complete and can get a bit strenuous at points, but the views from the top make it worthwhile. Buses also run up to the park, so visitors hoping to avoid the extra physical exertion can enjoy a relaxing ride to the park instead. Among the park’s hillside overlooks and forested paths are several ancient structures. Don’t miss the Church of St. Nicholas, the Old Jewish Cemetery, and the cliffside cave dwellings of Karepic’s Tower.