Posts Tagged ‘adriatic’
Croatia’s second largest city, Split, was not what I expected at all. In complete contrast to Dubrovnik, Split is gritty and a bit rough around the edges, where Dubrovnik is upscale and elegant. The main sight to see in the city is Diocletian’s Palace, built as a retirement palace for the Roman emperor Diocletian. It’s not just a palace, but a series of labyrinth streets that wind a maze around 220 historical buildings.
Split is located right in the middle of the Dalmatian coast in Croatia, right along the Adriatic sea. This old city is filled with ancient Roman ruins, and makes a good jumping off point for some of Croatia’s most popular islands and pristine beaches.
Join us all next week for our daily coverage of Split, Croatia!
From Dubrovnik I traveled by long distance bus to Split, Croatia, famous for its roman ruins, specifically Diocletian’s Palace. Split is also a hub for visits to a cluster of sun-kissed islands located just off the Croatian coast. After spending a few months in Northern Europe, I’m remembering just how much I love warm beach locations.
The entire journey north hugged the Croatian coastline, which was filled with stunning beaches. All along the way from my window seat, I enviously watched beach goers wade into the ocean, which was so clear you could see the pebbles in the shallow surf from up on the road! The whole route wound along rocky cliffs that dramatically plunged into sparkling emerald water. It was absolutely gorgeous.
Day and night, Dubrovnik glitters and shines in every imaginable color. The marble glimmers as if continuously wet, polished by hundreds of years of history, and the city is always alive as tourists and locals mix, eating black ink risotto and gelato of every imaginable flavor. Here are some of our favorite moments.
Dubrovnik, formerly known as Ragusa, is seeped in history, with traces of all the empires that left their mark here still visible below the surface. It’s so beautiful here that it’s easy to see why Dubrovnik changed hands so many times. Ruled by the Venetians, the Hungarians, the Ottomans, the Austro-Hungarian empire, and later by Yugoslavia, it wasn’t until 1991 that Croatia finally gained independence. Consequently, Dubrovnik was heavily attacked by Serbian-Montenegrin factions of the Yugoslav People’s Army who claimed Croatia was part of Montenegro. More than half of the buildings in the old town were damaged by continuous shelling, but this has all since been repaired.
Now only whispers of war remain throughout the city. These can be quietly observed in the form of plaques, or the contrast of newer roof tiles beside older ones. Yet, when you stop and take a closer look, you’ll also notice occasional bullet holes here and there on buildings, and of course the memories live on through the city’s residents.
Gone are the days of pre-booked hotels and finely-tuned travel itineraries. What began as a flawlessly organized trip, reserved down to the last detail has now become a completely spontaneous beast, and I am completely at its mercy.
When you’re on such a long trip, there is no way everything can be completely reserved ahead of time. Still, I had been trying to travel with a buffer of 2-3 weeks of reservations. Well, the Russian Visa Disaster put an end to that organization, and now things are operating in a more or less haphazard jumble with not a reservation in sight.