Split is the second-largest city in Croatia and is a beautiful must-see destination. Lots of people visit Dubrovnik, and we are often asked which one is the best. We reply that they are both very different and it is definitely worth seeing both if it’s possible.

The bus dropped us off just outside the open-air market, which is where we started first before entering the Diocletian palace. The palace dates back to 300 AD when Emperor Diocletian was in residence. The palace still has much of its outer walls and substructure. Within the walls, there is the Cathedral, which was once a mausoleum, roman columns and Venetian architecture, all fronted by the Riva, a very modern street full of cafes, restaurants and shops.

Split open-air Market

Split is a fascinating place to see and is more of a living museum, not only a tourist destination. The Croatian people have maintained it and still live their everyday lives in it, but it still holds onto its ancient history.

Once inside the palace through the small streets and alleyways, we were tempted to sit on the steps in the little square outside the Cathedral’s bell tower for a drink. The Luxor Hotel had cushions and menus scattered about the steps. We chose instead to sit in a more comfortable chair at one of the cafe’s nearby to relax and watch the hustle and bustle of the morning.

Split Walking Tour

There are lots of organised tours and plenty of guides waiting to take you around on the walking tour. Some are quite expensive, but we did notice guides holding up boards saying “One Penny Tours” we have heard that these are an excellent 90-minute tour. The local tourist info centre recommends the “one penny tour”, a tour guide service which is sponsored by the Croatian government. The tours leave every hour or so, and the cost is 1 euro per person.

We usually like to find our own way around a new city and tend to head to the visitor centre first to grab a walking map so that we don’t miss out on anything.

There was a group of Dalmatian singers in a beautiful open hallway where the acoustics were excellent and stood listening to them for a while and got a few photographs.

Below an interesting photo of the souvenir stalls which are throughout the cellar passageways.

You can wander around much of the Palace for free although there are entrance charges for some of the buildings.

I took this picture below of a beautiful bride and groom although I am not sure if it was a wedding (couldn’t see any guests around) or whether it was a photoshoot.  Lovely to see nevertheless.

Walking along the promenade a little way out of town, we came across a lovely little restaurant where we had a fantastic fish lunch overlooking the sea. The price was very reasonable at 1,000 kunas for two. (equivalent to £10).

To sum up, Split is a must-see. It is one of the ‘world’s most beautiful old cities with a fascinating history and character with lots of little shops, winding narrow lane and beautiful restoration.

Oh, and if you enjoyed Game of Thrones, you might be interested to know it was filmed here.

Split Images

Click to see larger image.

Further Info

Transport

Split is easy to get to with great air, (check Cheapflights here), bus and ferry links (and even some train services).

Take an Island Tour

We didn’t do this 6 island trip ourselves but we did hear from a couple on the campsite who did and they said that it was really good.  The trip is quite long at 11 hours.  It leaves Split at 8 am and you dock back in Split at 7 pm.  You spend the day island hopping around 6 nearby islands – Bisevo (blue cave), Vis, Ravnik (green cave), Budihovac, Hvar & Brac.  The trip includes lunch.  You get the chance to swim and snorkel on the blue lagoon (so don’t forget your swimwear). There is also an optional wine tasting tour.  The islands are home to hidden caves, beautiful coastlines, quaint fishing villages, and dolphins are often spotted swimming close by.  The tour is expensive at around £91 per person, but then it is a very full day.  You can book through Viator before you go, or book through one of the many touts in Split once you are there.

Split to KRKA National Park

From Split, you can visit Krka National Park.  The journey is approximately 1hr 15min ride by bus. You need to get to Skradin and from there a boat takes you to the falls.  The boat is included in the price of the entry ticket.  Once at the falls, you can go anywhere, However, you can only get to Visovac and Roski Slap by boat.  You buy tickets for that separately.  You can visit Visovac only or combine it with Roski Slap. The whole tour takes about 4 hours.  The whole tour takes about 4 hours.  Do Visovac and Roski Slap first so you can have a more relaxing time the rest of the day. The main and only swimming area is at the bottom of the main fall. You can get bus tickets at the port/bus station in Split which is opposite each other. There are 2 ways to get inside Krka national park if you are driving. One entrance is from Skradin.  You park at Skradin and then catch a boat to the entrance.  You pay for parking here. The other entrance is in Lozovac.  You park just before the entrance and catch a shuttle bus inside the park.

Split to Plitvice Lakes

There is no direct train from Split to Plitvice Lakes.  Although a bus would be cheaper than an excursion a round trip would take up too much of your day.  Excursions are the most convenient and easiest to book online in advance.  They are run by many companies and they all seem to have similar offers.

By car, the distance is 243 km driving along the E71 and A1.  Time: two and a half to three hours. Museums in Split include the Maritime Museum; the Museum of Croatian Archaeological Monuments; and the Museum of Croatia. Trogir, Sibenik and Zadar are places that are worth a visit too. (Click the links to read individual blogs).  You can get buses from Split to each of these places.  You could always get a bus one way and a boat the other.  We love getting a boat where possible for the beautiful views and lovely sea breeze on a warm day.  The boat is on the Bura line so you can check out the schedules here.  The journey to Trogir by bus is 40 minutes on a number 37 bus. Tickets can be bought on the bus or from the ticket stand at the bus stop.  The bus from Trogir doesn’t leave from the main bus station but from the local bus station). If you are driving to Trogir it will only take 25-35 minutes.

Split to Dubrovnik

A question often asked is how far is Split to Dubrovnik and how do I get there? The distance between the two cities is approximately 230 km apart which will take just over 3 hours by car. There are a number of ways to travel between the two cities.

Ferry

The big name in ferries in Croatia, Jadrolinija, do trips to Hvar every morning at 9 am in peak season and do returns in the evening.  The ferry takes just over an hour and costs around £5 each way Supetar on the island of Brac is another quick and easy place to get to by boat from Split; Jadrolinija do lots of ferries throughout the day and they only take around 50 minutes.

Split to Dubrovnik by fast ferry

Kapetan Luka company run the ferries that run from Split to Dubrovnik.  They start in early May until the end of October.  High-speed catamaran line connects Split to Dubrovnik, with stops on islands Brac, Hvar, Korcula and Mljet along the way. In May you can travel on Mondays, Tuesdays, Fridays and Saturdays.  The ferries run every day of the week from in June and July.  They are only available on Friday, Saturday and Sunday in August. A one-way ticket from Split to Dubrovnik or vice-versa is 210 kunas (correct as of 2018), and it takes approximately 4 hours and 20 minutes. A possible disadvantage to the ferry is that it is an early morning crossing. Although you can go to the Kapetan Luka website it a little confusing for me and found the Dubrovnik-travelcorner.com site much easier to navigate and get the information I needed.

Split to Dubrovnik by Car

You can drive along the coastal road D8 from Split via Omis, Makarska to Ploce, which is on the border of Croatia – Bosnia and Herzegovina, from there all the way to Dubrovnik.  There are no toll charges on this route. This route is probably the slowest option but the views are breathtaking and if you have the time it’s worth visiting Omis and/or Makarska on the way.  This route driving straight through will take about 4 hours which includes crossing into Bosnia-Herzegovina.   When you stop at the border you will be required to show your passport and green card. If you hire a car you will need to let the hire company know that you will be driving the short 9km through Bosnia so that they can provide you with a green card otherwise, if it’s your own car you will need to contact your insurance company before you go. A faster route is to take the highway E65 and D8 coastal road although 87 km of it is on the motorways which I find so boring.  This option will take 3 hours 30 minutes with a small toll roughly €5-6  The distance is slightly more than the first option at 236 km

Avoiding the Neum Corridor in between Croatia and Bosnia

If you are concerned about driving through the Neum corridor in Bosnia you can avoid it by taking the car ferry from Ploce port to Trpanj on Peljesac peninsula.  The ferry is run by Jadrolinija company.  The crossing takes about one hour and is on line No. 633. During the high season (July and August) there are seven daily crossings from 5,00pm to 19,30.  Here is the ferry schedule with the timetable In April 2018 a contract was signed to start work to build the Peljesac Bridge which will stretch 2.4 km from the southern peninsula of Peljesac to the mainland spanning across the bay in the Adriatic shared by Croatia and Bosnia thus avoiding the need to drive through Bosnia.

Split to Dubrovnik by Bus

The bus service in Croatia is excellent and we have used them many times to get around. We have based ourselves at Split and then visited Zadar, Omis, Makarska and Sibenik as well as some of the smaller villages. The buses are very frequent, cheap, safe and comfortable.  They are generally in good condition and almost all have air conditioning during the hot summer months. You can also avoid the stress of driving somewhere you haven’t been before or finding a parking space. If you have not got use of a car then travelling from Split to Dubrovnik by bus is recommended.  There are at least 10 departures a day in winter and over 25 departures in the high season. A one-way ticket is approximately  110 kunas (14,14 Euro), while a round trip will cost 176 kunas (23,12 Euro). You can view the bus schedule from Split bus station here On some longer routes buses have a planned stop at a restaurant along the way so it’s worth checking this out when you buy your ticket.   Ask for all bus carriers that run on the same route. I recommend that you buy your tickets well in advance and reserve a  seat as sometimes in the busy periods the buses can be crowded. If you arrive early at the bus station in Split you can deposit your luggage at the left luggage office at the Split bus station.  The cost is approx. 5 kunas for the first hour and then 1,5 kuna for every hour after. Here are some frequently used bus connections from the Split bus station. Dubrovnik 227 km Sibenik 87 km Zadar 158 km Mostar 163 km Medjugorje 139 km Zagreb 411 km Rijeka 366 km Pula 470 km Plitvice 276 km A possible disadvantage of the bus is that the bus station is located 2 km outside of the walled city which may mean a taxi ride to get you to where you need to go. The approximate price of a bus to Plitvice Lakes from Split is 130-160 kunas. 

Flights from Split to Dubrovnik

There are direct flights from Split to Dubrovnik (SPU – DBV) and vice versa.  The flight takes 40-45 minutes and most are priced under £100 per person one way.

Private car transfers

Private transfer services from Split to Dubrovnik are convenient and easy to find in any season and a relatively cheap way to travel.  The private transfer service can pick you up anywhere in Split, either from the airport or your hotel and drop you off at a location of your choice in Dubrovnik.  Times are flexible as you can choose the time you want to travel. The car transfer services available are:  Kiwitaxi, Happytovisit and SoloTransfers and the cost is approx.  188 euros one way.

Car Hire

There are so many amazing places to visit which sometimes we can’t get to with our motorhome, so we often hire a car for a few days to explore more. We take out an annual car hire excess insurance with insure4carhire. RentalCars.com is the company we use if hiring from a campsite but if we are flying into an airport we use Zest Car Hire which usually has the best deals but can only be picked up from an airport or hotel.

Campsite

Stobrec, Split, Croatia
N43˚30’15” E16˚31’34”

 The 4-star campsite was really nice and right on the beach bordered by the sea on two sides.  We had a great pitch near to the beach but with the right amount of shade and sunny area. We were on pith 167 which was near the wifi mast so the signal was great.  The wifi is free.   It is a large site that also has air-conditioned mobile homes available for hire.  There is a supermarket on-site and a couple more supermarkets nearby. Play area for the kids. 

We took a walk outside the camp into the village of Stobrec one early evening for a drink where there are clubs, coffee bars and a couple of supermarkets. What we particularly like is that the bus stop to Split is right outside the campsite and Split is just a 20-minute journey away (5 km). The bus number is 25 or you can catch the No. 60 from the dual carriageway.

This Site is listed in the ACSI Discount Camping Book. This book is definitely worth getting for its discount card that you can use for out of season camping.

Split Hotels

Find hotels in Split – Booking.com, Lastminute.com,