Once we’d had our fill of the lakes in Plitvice National Park (read: torn ourselves away and promised to return at a later time), we drove down to Split.
We stopped for lunch in the medieval city of Zadar. Nikola Bašić’s unique art installations – the sea organ and sun salutation – drove us there. His sea organ is the world’s only organ which plays music using sea waves while the sun salutation is a vast circle of solar panels that light up in patterns. I was busy taking pictures of the Adriatic coast, but Savi spent her time cavorting with the solar lights that flash in fascinating sequences along the coast.
Nikola Bašić’s sun salutation in Zadar
Rustic pizzas in Zadar
Next stop- Trogir. Most people prefer to stay in the larger towns of the area but we opted for Trogir because we liked the idea of staying in a medieval town – our first evening was spent absorbing the sights and sounds of this enchanting port. We stayed in Trogir for 3 days, and spent our days in Central Dalmatia exploring the Roman ruins, medieval towns, and fishing ports.
Driving through Central Dalmatia
Trogir by day
Trogir by night
On one of our days there, we drove down to Split to explore the Diocletian Palace. The walls of the Palace house a small city, made from marble, within its confines. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, Split is perfect for a weekend break in Croatia. It is easy to spend days sipping coffee and cocktails at the pavement cafes and quaint bars that populate Split. The seaside promenade makes for a pleasant walk, and Split’s sunsets are a sight to behold. Take a look:
Grgur Ninski’s statue, Split
The ruins of the Diocletian Palace at night, Split
Restaurants inside the walls of the Diocletian Palace, Split
Hole-in-the-wall bakery inside the walls of the Diocletian Palace, Split
Sunset at the seaside promenade, Split
On our last day in Trogir, we discovered Solin, a little town situated north-east of Split, entirely by chance. While Split and Trogir feature heavily on off-beat itineraries of Croatia, neither of us had heard anything about Solin. To our surprise, the Roman ruins in Solin were very impressive. The grand amphitheatre at the ruins is especially breathtaking. The best part? Entry is free and there are no tourists around.
Savi at the Roman Ruins, Solin
Bruised Passports’ Tips
- You must take a walk along the Adriatic coast and try fresh pizzas from the pizzerias that litter the labyrinthine alleys of Zadar.
- Visit the ruins in Solin- you will not be disappointed.
- In Split, walk around the remains of the Diocletian Palace at night. Try the Soparnik, a local delicacy made of baked dough and vegetables.Before leaving Split, make sure to rub the giant toe of Grgur Ninski’s statue near the Diocletian Palace; it is said to bring good luck
Need help planning a road trip to Croatia? Have a look at some sample itineraries