sparkly split, croatia
today we’re exploring SPLIT, croatia!
after zagreb & plitvice lakes, we headed out to the croatian coast.
split is the second-largest city in croatia and the biggest city
in the beautiful area of dalmatia (the coastal region). many pass
through split on the way to islands or other cities, but it really
should not be overlooked. we absolutely loved it for a few reasons.
for one, you get the chance to see authentic local dalmatian // croatian life here. the
city is still filled with locals & not crowded out by tourists. although there are plenty of
visitors, you can experience the local way of life here much more than in other cities.
two, this city offers a great mix. it struck me as a cross between miami and
laguna beach (two places that i love!) although there are thousands more years
of history here and major cultural differences, that is what came to my mind.
modernity and nightlife meet tradition and charm in the history of the
city. the ancient roman monument diocletian’s palace sits right next to
trendy restaurants and shops right inside of the old walls. it is the best example
of the old meeting the new and there is just a great feel. i love when cities strike
a balance and offer something for everyone, which is exactly what split does.
three, going along with what i wrote above…there is so much history here!
although part of croatia, split was once ruled by romans who settled along
the coast, packing the ancient palace full of history. after being built by a
roman emperor as a refuge, so much life has passed through here. we took a
walking tour and learned so many crazy facts about diocletian and this palace
(which really should be considered a fortress – it is massive and used by the city today!)
four, the riva. this is the more modern waterfront that felt like a european miami beach.
locals may not be thrilled about this modern update, but it makes for a great area
that visitors can stroll, eat, and enjoy. it’s a gorgeous setting against the water
with some fabulous restaurants (one of which you’ll see more of below!)
five: to top it all off, the city sits right on the sparkling adriatic sea and offers
plenty of opportunity to get out on the water. the turquoise water itself is
some of the prettiest — it really does sparkle! do you see what i mean? ^^
it looks similar to scenes of greek or italian coastlines, which makes sense
as they share the same sea :) split could not have a more gorgeous setting, with
beaches dotting the coastline and some pretty hills to hike up for an even better view.
i think by now i’ve convinced you to visit split with all of my reasons, but
here are some more photos and experiences from split to seal the deal ;)
the old town is dreamy in its winding, white-stone ways.
we stayed in the center of it at the prettiest boutique hotel cornaro
and found it to be the ideal location and style for our stay.
i was in love with the pink building + entryway ^^
and chase was in love with the rooftop hot tub with the best views in town ^^
we went running a few mornings along the beach, and the first
morning it was already so hot at 8:00 am. we saw all the older local
men already out at the beach for a swim in their speedos :) and it looked
so tempting to jump in! on our loop back i stopped and told chase we had
to jump into that sparkling water…it was just too hot, and the water too inviting.
we took off our running shoes and dove in, and it was definitely the best decision
i’ve made in a while … even if it did mean running all the way back in wet shorts!
just like in zagreb, there were grilled corn stands everywhere.
i couldn’t resist and i got about 99 kernels stuck in my teeth.
ice cream + the beach makes for a very good afternoon in split!
we also had a walking tour of the old town with local guide vjeren.
we loved him and couldn’t believe the detailed knowledge he had of his city.
he works with the great tourism board, but he is a freelance tour guide
as well – so we recommend booking with him if you visit!
he added so much to our time in split, and his info is right here:
he took us through diocletian’s palace, told us crazy stories, walked us through old town,
introduced us to local shop owners, showed us the traditional art of filigran jewelry,
and gave us great recommendations for our time in split. he will craft your walking
tour to be any focus and any length of time. highly recommended!
after the tour we had to get out on that beautiful water during sunset.
the tourism board so nicely invited us on one of the semi-submarine
excursions, which ended up being a great way to get out on the water
in a shorter amount of time. it’s probably best suited for people with
kids.. (they would love it!!) but we were glad we went. i have to admit,
i am not the biggest fan of these kind of things and i was nervous i’d
get claustrophobic down there. luckily you cruise out on the open water
on the outside of the boat and can pop down underneath to spot the
reef and fish whenever you please! it was so lovely and so beautiful –
both above water and below. go at sunset if you choose to do this!
submarine skipper ready to embark! ^^ haha
^^ the views of split from the water are an absolute MUST. gorgeous.
now are you understanding the reasons behind my post title ?? ^^
we didn’t see as many fish going at sunset, but it was still
stunningly turquoise and we saw enough for my liking :)
i just can’t get enough.. of that boy, that sea, or those rocks towering above it ^^
back onshore after a successful excursion, our stomachs were rumbling
and we didn’t have to go far… just steps away on the riva we sat down at
brasserie on 7 for one of my favorite meals of our time in europe!
ideal setting, ideal style, ideal food can all be found here.
a beet + scallop salad started things off so right, with
a touch of seafood that must be had in split.
we got to try the chef’s famed white tomato soup and it was to die for.
he made it up by drying out the juice of the tomato overnight and then
reducing it, so that it is a creamy & tangy take on traditional tomato soup.
we went for the fisherman’s platter to split as the main course,
because fresh seafood really is the staple here. every bite was bursting
with freshness and i think i ate almost all the shrimp (sorry chase! ;)
after watching the sun dip below the horizon we indulged
in delicious dessert before wandering back through town.we left split sunkissed, full of seafood, and smiling.
it was a magical stop and one we’ll always remember!
*this post is in partnership with the tourist board of split.
thank you to visit split for welcoming us!
all seaside-adoring, history loving, fresh-fish approving opinions are our own :)