Welcome to Split, Croatia!
I had no idea what to expect when we hopped on the plane to Split. Chantelle did all the planning for the destinations, and spent days on Pinterest looking at interesting cities in Europe. I pretty much heard the summary of each day of research from her, but did not see the images or read the articles that she was seeing. When I thought of Croatia, I pictured an Eastern-European country that was like Russia, but smaller. Cold, flat, and people who all had crazy dash-cam videos. I was SO far off.
We arrived at the Split airport in the afternoon, and it was blistering hot outside. After clearing customs, we hopped onto a charter bus that apparently took us into town with a bunch of other confused looking tourists. As soon as we started driving from the airport to the city, my perspective drastically changed. We were driving through a rural part of town, with every house having red-clay roofs, and little farms. With a mountain on our left, looking out the right window, past all of the farm-style homes we could see a beautiful city surrounded by water on all sides. It made me think of Vancouver because it was a city next to water, with a large forested park at the very end, just like Stanley Park.
Arriving, we were instantly taken back by how vibrant this city was and how clear the water was. We walked along the main promenade to the sound of music and conversation from all the people eating at the restaurants right beside the bay. Our airbnb host was super helpful when we arrived, and gave us maps, and tips and tricks to seeing everything. We were a short walk from the Tower Square, so we started to walk!
Split's old town is beautiful. It first started off as the resting place for an emperor of Rome way back in the day and the city wall still stands surrounding everything. The cobblestone streets were filled with restaurants, farm markets, and everything else you could think of. There were a couple Game of Thrones shops, because I think that some of the show is filmed here? Our first full day we spent walking around this awesome town, and explored every small alleyway and shop. We finished our day by having dinner at the little restaurant fixed in this small square surrounded by stone walls and apartments. We decided to walk to a nearby beach to end the day, and spent some time falling asleep to the sound of the waves crashing against the rocks at our feet.
Second day we made the trek to Krka National Park which has these beautiful waterfalls that you can enjoy. After taking forever to get there, we realized that this might be the busiest day in Krka history. It was so busy that we had to find a spot about 100ft from the water, and I didn't even end up swimming because it was chaos!! Besides the crowd, the place was definitely magical, and you could not deny that it was beautiful. An hour and a half both ways for travel had me a bit irritated, but whatever! We ended the day on a high note (literally) by climbing up the tower at the Cathedral of St. Domnius. The views of the city on the bay was beautiful! Wont lie, I was super sketched out being that high in a super old tower built of stone. The only thing that kept me calm was the amazing views and the camera that I used to hide my face as the wind picked up! The town at night is a pretty vibrant place and next to the Cathedral is this large square made of marble with steps that people sit on. At night this square is packed with people sipping on their drinks while this amazing performer sings songs that everyone gets into! The vibe was really amazing with hundreds of young families and people everywhere with gelato, food, and in good spirits. We stuck around and enjoyed the crowds for a bit, and then explored the town square with some more gelato before heading back for the night.
Our third day in Split we decided to travel to one of the small islands you can get to by ferry called Brac. This ferry we took was the slowest boat in the history of all boats. We could see our destination the entire trip, and crawled there in 50 minutes, which should have been 20 mins at most. We learned to laugh at these kind of things, because if you have ever been to Split, you realize that public transportation is a very special entity in its own. After arriving to Brac Island, we took a charter bus up and over the small mountains, and arrived on the other side to this really cool beach that they call Zlatni Rat, or Rat Tail. It is this large beach out of smooth round river rocks that shoots out of the island, just like a rat tail! It was nice to get off our feet for a while and soak in our last day of swimming on the trip; Bittersweet. On the way back we caught a really nice sunset as the ferry was pulling into the small bay which was amazzzingg.
Up next we are in the fairy-tale castle city of Prague.