Airport and transport – freeway (A1); railway; ferries (the third busiest port in the Mediterranean; regularly between central Dalmatian islands, big Dalmatian cities and Italy (Ancona and Pescara)); international airport Split (Kaštela; 20 km).
History – in 6th century BC a Greek colony; the first inhabitant of Split was the Roman emperor Diocletian (AD 244 – 311; ruled Rome from 284 to 305; started to build his palace around 293 AD, after retirement from politics in 305 withdrew to luxurious Diocletian’s Palace of 38,000 m²); this opulent palace and its surroundings were at times inhabited by a population as large as 8,000 to 10,000 people; the following turbulent centuries made the palace into a town first populated by the citizens of the nearby Salona (former capital of the Roman province of Dalmatia; today Solin; according to historians, at that time, surpassed in size only by Rome).
Interesting to see: remains of Diocletian’s Palace (3rd century); the Cathedral of St. Duje (the main part is 3rd century; 17th century chorus and 12th century Bell Tower; Cathedral’s wooden doors, 13th century with 14 scenes from the life of Jesus Christ); Golden Gate (4th century); chapel of St. Martin (7th century); Silver Gate (3rd century); Iron Gate (4th century); church “Gospa od Zvonika” (11th century); Brass Gate (3rd century); Vestibul (3rd century); church St. Andrija (7th century); Temple of Jupiter (4th century); Peristil (4th century); the Cellars (4th century; art exhibitions and theatre plays are regularly organized here); church St. Nikola na Gori (13th century); church Our Lady of Good Advice (16th century); church Our Lady of Sadness (14th century); church Our Lady of Bethlehem (15th century); St. Jere (15th century); St. Jure (9th century); St. Benedict (14th century); Our Lady (11th century); St. Lazar (15th century); church Our Lady of Soca (10th century); St. Francis Monastery (13th century); church St. Martin (5th century); church St. Teodor (6th century; the oldest preserved bell tower on the Croatian coast of the Adriatic); the church of Holly Trinity (7th century); the church of St. Ante (17th century); the monastery of St. Ante (15th century); Benedictine monastery of St. Eufemija (8th century); Kaštelet (17th century); the Theatre (19th century).
Info – Split is the second-largest urban centre in Croatia (more than 400,000 inhabitants); the ridges Kozjak (780 m) and Mosor (1,330 m) protect the city from the north and northeast, and separate it from the hinterland; a hill, Marjan (178 m) rises in the western part of the peninsula; has four marinas and the City Port in the centre of the city which is used only for passenger and ferry traffic; a major sports centre; there are many beaches and public beaches in the city and its surroundings (the most popular is Bacvice; a sand beach almost in the very heart of the town).
Happenings: the Spit Summer (a cultural event; from mid-July to mid-August; open-air stages around town; operas, plays and concerts); Melodies of the Croatian Adriatic; Festival of Pop Music; the Saturday Nights (de-voted to classical music); pop-music events; the Art-Summer; folklore shows; Jazz Festival; Film Festival (Films of unknown directors); Graphic Art Biennial; Carnival; Olympic Sailing Week; Croatia Boat Show.
Inevitable to see: the Archaeological Museum (founded in 1820, one of the oldest in Croatia); Treasury of Split Cathedral (valuable collection of religious art); the Ethnographic Museum (founded in 1910); the Museum of Marine History; the Museum of Natural Science; the Collection of the Franciscan Monastery; the Museum of Croatian Archaeological Monuments; the Art Gallery (permanent exhibition of paintings and sculptures from the 14th century to the present day); the City Museum of Split; Ivan Mestrovic Gallery (20th century; most prominent Croatian artist); Marjan Forest Park (includes promenades, vista points, solariums, nature paths, playgrounds and the Split zoo).
Good to know: in 1979 historic city of Split (built around the Diocletian’s Palace) was included in the UNESCO list of World Cultural Heritage; Diocletian’s Palace (3rd century; white limestone was transported to the coast from the rich quarries on the island of Brac; this limestone is recognized as the finest quality in the world and it was used to build the many outstanding structures located in the Palace; one of these is the monumental Peristyle which is among the most magnificent and unique historical courtyards in the world); the first detailed tourist guide through the town and its surroundings was published in 1894; the passenger seaport in Split (annual traffic of 4 million passengers) is the third busiest port in the Mediterranean.