Over the last few years, holidays to Croatia have been on the rise, and it’s easy to see why. Whether you’re looking for a fantastic city break or a relaxing beach holiday, this wonderful country, which is renowned for its natural beauty and historical heritage, really does have it all.
Split is the second largest city in Croatia, and it’s also one of the country’s most popular tourist destinations. From winding streets and ancient walls, to stunning beaches and a vibrant nightlife, Split is the perfect holiday destination, with something for everyone.
To celebrate this wonderful city, we sent top UK travel blogger Wanderlust Chloe to explore what Split has to offer in just 48 hours. To give you some inspiration for your next holiday, here are her top five must-dos!
Climb the Bell Tower at the Cathedral of St Domnius
Located in the heart of the city is the Cathedral of St Domnius, one of Split’s most famous landmarks. Built in the 4th century, it’s said to be the oldest Catholic cathedral in the world that remains in use in its original structure. If you’re feeling fit and not afraid of heights, then be sure to climb the bell tower, where you’ll be greeted with spectacular views over the city. There may be over 200 steps, but it’s well worth the climb!
Towering above the city for 60 metres, the bell tower can be seen from pretty much anywhere in Split, so it’ll be hard to miss on a visit.
Stroll Along the Riva Promenade
Stretching for 250 metres, the Riva Promenade is the perfect place to sit back and unwind after soaking up some of Split’s fascinating history. Watch the boats bobbing on the glistening water, before visiting some of the lively bars and cafes along the promenade.
The Riva Promenade is the ideal location to use your prepaid Lyk card too. Lined with huge palm trees, there are plenty of small restaurants to enjoy a coffee or a cocktail in, and an array of shops where you can buy a few Croatian keepsakes. You can use your Lyk card anywhere that accepts Mastercard® Prepaid, and if needed, you can top your Lyk card up straight from your smartphone.
Enjoy Split’s Food Scene
A trip to Split wouldn’t be complete without sampling some of Croatia’s finest cuisines. There are countless cafes and restaurants dotted around the city, all offering many delicious dishes, such as seafood, pastries, meats and more. Traditional Croatian food is a mixture of Italian, Turkish, Hungarian and Austrian, and includes popular staple ingredients such as paprika, garlic, olive oil, rosemary, oregano and so much more.
One dish that is a must-try in Croatia is Dalmatian Peka. Usually made from either lamb, veal or octopus, the meat or fish is placed alongside vegetables inside a dish with a metal lid, and then cooked in a fireplace. A great restaurant to try this traditional dish is at Konoba Varoš, located down a winding street just a five-minute walk from the Riva Promenade.
If you’ve got more of a sweet tooth then don’t worry, as you’ll find plenty of sweet treats at every turn in Split. Whether you fancy a daily dose of gelato or want to be adventurous and try a famous bubble waffle, you won’t leave feeling hungry!
Climb Marjan Hill
If you only have a limited amount of time in Split, then you should definitely climb Marjan Hill, as you’ll get a bird’s eye view over the whole city. Although there are over 300 steep steps up to the flag at the top of the hill, the spectacular views are breathtaking. Marjan Hill has a rich history, with evidence suggesting that it dates back to Roman times. On your journey, you’ll pass twelve churches, each one offering something different and providing you with an unforgettable sightseeing tour along the way.
There’s even a café on the terrace about half way up, an ideal place to stop off and enjoy a drink and a bite to eat on the way back down!
Explore Croatia’s Islands
Although Split itself is beautiful and you could spend days on end exploring the fascinating streets, no trip is complete without taking a day trip to one of the city’s nearby islands. One island that’s well worth a visit is Šolta, which is just one hour away. This charming island boasts glistening turquoise waters, numerous pebbled beaches and a small fishing harbour, where you can sit and watch the boats sail by. If you fancy a paddle, then don’t forget, you can also wear your splash-proof Lyk Waveband, which allows you to make contactless payments from the tap of your wrist.
Another popular island that is just 45 minutes from Split is Brač, the largest Dalmatian island. Filled with rocky coves, shingle beaches and a superb hilly countryside, it’s ideal for keen walkers. Brač is also famous for Zlatni Rat Beach, which has been named as one of the most beautiful beaches in the world.
Before you go, don’t forget to take out travel insurance to help you with any unfortunate events, such as missed departures, lost luggage and personal accidents. You can get Roam Insurance straight from your smartphone, and there are three levels of cover available to give you peace of mind on your next happy holiday.
Have you been to Split before? What’s at the top of your list of things to see? Let us know in the comments below.
*All images courtesy of Wanderlust Chloe
Mastercard is a registered trademark, and the circles design is a trademark of Mastercard International Incorporated. Lyk ™ is issued by Wirecard Card Solutions Ltd (“WDCS”) pursuant to license by Mastercard International Inc. WDCS is authorised by the Financial Conduct Authority to conduct electronic money service activities under the Electronic Money Regulations 2011 (Ref: 900051)
Roam is underwritten by White Horse Insurance Ireland dac, which is authorised and regulated by the Central Bank of Ireland. White Horse Insurance Ireland dac is a wholly owned subsidiary of Thomas Cook Money Limited. Thomas Cook Money Limited is an Appointed Representative of White Horse Insurance Ireland dac.
White Horse Insurance Ireland dac Registered Office: First Floor, Rineanna House, Shannon Free Zone, Shannon, County Clare, Republic of Ireland. Company registration number: 306045
Thomas Cook Money Limited Registered Office: 3rd floor, South Building, 200 Aldersgate, London, EC1A 4HD. Company registration number: 10344118