Split, the largest Croatian city on the Adriatic coast, lies in the heart of Dalmatia. The old town was built around a bay on the southern shore of the peninsula, sheltered from the open sea by numerous islands. The entire western shore of the peninsula is kind of huge, mountainous and wooded park, while industrial plants, shipyards, limestone quarries and an ugly commercial and military port are far enough away, in the northern part of the peninsula. High, the coastal mountains lying on the blue Adriatic Sea provide an exceptionally beautiful backdrop for this place.
Split gained fame during the reign of Emperor Diocletian (245-313 neither.), famous persecutor of the first Christians. In years 295-305 he had a palace built here, in which he spent the last moments of his life and which, after his death, served subsequent rulers of Rome. W VII w., after leaving the nearby colony of Salona, many Romanized inhabitants of Dalmatia came to Split and lived behind the high walls of the palace, and their descendants live in Split to this day.
The city was first under the control of Byzantium, and then Croatia, but from XII to XIV w. medieval Split enjoyed complete autonomy. The western part of the old town dates from this period, around Narodni square trg, in which the city's secular life was concentrated, while the area around the palace walls has always been the center of church life.
W 1420 r. Split was conquered by Venice, which led to the slow decline of the city. W XVII w. Thick walls were built around the city, protecting him from the Turks. W 1797 r. the entire region fell to Austria, whose rule lasted until 1918 r., with a short break during the Napoleonic Wars.
Po 1945 r. Split has become a large industrial center, and numerous settlements arose around it, but fortunately a large part of the old town has survived – it is the combination of history with great dynamics, that it is one of the most fascinating cities in Europe. Split is also a great base for excursions in the surrounding area, so it's worth staying here for a few days.
One gets the impression, that Split came out unscathed from the recent war: there aren't many signs of damage here.
Bus Station, the railway station and the ferry dock are located next to each other, on the eastern side of the bay, near the old town. Luggage room (wardrobe) at the bus station it is open from. 6.00-20.00, and the one at the train station from. 5.00-23.00. Seafront promenade – Coast of the Croatian national revival, is the best landmark in Split.
Tourist information office – Turistićki biro is located at Obala hrvatskog Narodnog Preporoda 12.
Post and telecommunications – Poste restante correspondence can be collected at the counter no 7 at the main post office, at King Tomislav 9 (pn.-pt. 7.00-20.00, sb. 7.00-14.00]. The call center is open daily. 7.00-21.00. There is always a line of people waiting for connections on Sundays and early evenings, so better come here in the morning. Dialing code for Split: 021.
Tourist agencies – American Express is represented by the Atlas travel agency (Trg Braće Radicia, 21 000 Split, tel.43055). Mail for customers is held here by 2 months.
Bookstores – In the International Bookstore (Coast of the Croatian national revival 20) you can buy foreign newspapers.
There are many more things to see in Split than the volume of this guidebook allows. The old town is one big open-air museum, the more interesting, that normal life still goes on there.
Diocletian's Palace overlooking the bay is one of the most magnificent Roman buildings in the world that have survived to this day. It was built to be powerful, rectangular fortress, surrounded by walls with dimensions 215 on 180 m, which were reinforced with towers. Imperial residence, temples and a mausoleum once stood south of the main road, connecting the east and west gates.
The entrance to the centrally located ground-floor part of the palace is at Obala hrvatskog Narodnog preporoda 22. On the left you can see the excavated underground chambers, which, although empty, make a great impression. You reach the peristyle through the passage, picturesque, the square surrounded by columns, where the tower of the neo-Romanesque cathedral rises. Westybul, vestibule in the passage on the ground floor, at the southern end of the peristyle, it is covered with an oculus dome. A path from the peristyle in front of the cathedral leads to the temple of Jupiter, where the baptistery is now located.
The cathedral stands on the eastern side of the peristyle, built on the ruins of Diocletian's mausoleum, the only memento of the emperor is the round sculpture of his head, a stone wreath of flowers below the dome, right above the baroque white marble altar. It is worth paying attention to the Romanesque, wooden door (with 1214 r.) and a stone pulpit. You can climb the tower for a small fee.
The west gate of the palace leads to the medieval Narodni trg, with the old town hall from the 15th century, built in the Venetian Gothic style. At Trg Braće Radicia, between Narodni trgiem and the bay, there is the northern tower from the Venetian garrison castle from the 15th century., who once stood on the seashore. The eastern gate of the palace leads to the market area.
In the Middle Ages, the nobility and wealthy merchants built their residences within the palace walls. In one of these buildings, in Patac Pa-pal on Papalićeva Street 5 (also called Zarkoya), now it houses the City Museum (see below). After walking through the northern gate of the palace, you can see a huge sculpture (with 1929 r.) Ivana Meśtrovicia, depicting Gregorius of Nin, 10th century Slavic religious leader, who fought for the right to celebrate mass in Croatian.