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Split Itinerary: one, two, or three days
Split is one of the cities in Croatia that is the most popular to visit. So, it’s only natural you will visit Split and spend at least two days in Split (if not more!) Be sure to add Split to your Croatia itinerary!
Split is a great spot to base yourself to visit nearby islands and even just relax on the beaches depending on the time of year. You may be wondering how many days in Split. You’ll get itinerary inspiration to spend one, two, or three days in Split, Croatia.
Immerse yourself in Ancient Roman history, beautiful sunny beaches, and the Adriatic Sea for at least two to three days in Split, Croatia. Let’s dive in on the top things to do in Split, Croatia!
About Split, Croatia
Split, Croatia is located on the Dalmatian coast along the Adriatic Sea. It is the second largest city in all of Croatia but the largest coastal city. With an abundance of history to explore from Diocletian’s Palace to museums as well as the glittering ocean flanking the city for a day trip to nearby islands on the water Split is a must-visit destination in Croatia.
Split’s Old Town is a UNESCO World Heritage site and is a pedestrian-only zone.
Where to Stay
Definitely stay near Old Town Split and somewhat near the port. If you’re planning to do any days on the water or ferrying to the nearby islands you’ll want to be in a central area to both.
While in Split for 3 nights, we stayed at Royal Suites-Sky. I would stay there again in a heartbeat! It was a great walkable distance both from the port area and near everything we wanted to see in Old Town. It was a larger accommodation, secure and very comfortable!
Some other accommodations I considered while planning our days in Split:
Depending on the comparison of pricing, I usually use Booking.com when making travel arrangements. The flexibility of reserving without having to pay upfront and cancellation windows make it my go-to when booking hotels and places to stay. (Especially in Europe!)
Click below to search and compare more Split accommodations on Booking!
How to get to Split
The easiest way to get to Split is via car. However, parking once you’re in Split can be a bit tricky! Depending on where you’re staying be sure to inquire if there is assigned or free parking in advance.
You can also get to Split via bus or ferry. Flixbus operates from several different locations throughout Croatia and it’s an easy way to get from city to city without having to rent a car.
If you’re coming from the Croatian city of Dubrovnik, traveling to Split by ferry is an option. Although not the fastest, the views along the way are well worth it! You can also travel by ferry to Split from Italy. We spent 15 days in Italy and it definitely wasn’t enough.
If you’re getting to Split as the first location in your Croatia travels, you can fly here as well. Split Airport (Resnik) or Split International Airport is an International airport located about 27 km (~17 miles) from the Split city center.
You can book flights here using the airport code SPU. Use Flight Connections to determine the best route. There are several direct routes into Split from all over Europe. If you’re coming from another European location, you may be able to snag a direct flight into Split!
A lot of things in Split are very easily walkable, with a few exceptions. Old Town is a pedestrian zone and much of the city center is very walkable. But, if you’re planning on visiting things that are away from the port or city center you may want a vehicle which will be easier.
There are local buses that will bring you to most locations but you will be subject to the bus line timetable. For example, you can get to Kliss Fortress (outside of Split) via bus line 22.
Uber is also available in Split if you need a quick ride somewhere without the commitment of a rental car.
Best Places to eat & drink
Split Old Town and the city center have a lot of restaurants to choose from! Here are some of my top picks.
This is more of a gastropub and craft cocktail location. They do offer a limited menu of snacks and light fare. The drinks were amazing (as was the food!)
It’s a smaller venue located right near Diocletian’s palace and the Old Town. Strolling through Old Town all lit up at night either before or after a few cocktails puts a pin in a perfect day spent in Split!
Leopold’s Craft Beer Bar
This craft beer bar is a must-stop if you want to try out some local Croatia brews. Located in a lively spot within Old Town with a lot of alfresco seating. Be warned though, it’s cash only! So be sure to plan ahead.
Usually before traveling, we always try to get some local currency to have on hand so we don’t have to hunt down an ATM in situations like this!
FANTAZIJA kitchen & wine
The historic location of this restaurant makes it truly enticing. Couple that with the motto of only fresh ingredients with local wine and you’re in for a treat.
Only open for dinner and reservations in advance (especially during high season) are recommended.
Offering both indoor and outdoor seating Portofino is a fine place for a laid-back evening after taking in the splendor of Split.
Offering a little bit of everything from seafood, to pasta, and steaks everyone is sure to find something delicious to enjoy. There’s even a vegan menu available.
This is a very popular place to have sushi and oysters in Split. It has won many traveler and local awards. If you’re like me though, you have to be specifically in the mood for sushi. So, if your craving hits while in Split you know where to go!
Zinfandel Food & Wine Bar Split
With over 100 different bottles of wine and 30 different wines by the glass offered this is the perfect place for happy hour!
The menu changes seasonally focused on what is fresh and local at the current time and the wine list is ever-changing as well.
1 Day in Split
Start your day by heading into Split’s Old Town.
During your first day in Split, you have to check out the ancient Roman Diocletian’s Palace. It was built by the Roman emperor Diocletian at the turn of the 4th century AD. It’s the main attraction located in Split’s Old Town as it takes up about half of the area.
It’s no surprise as the beautiful structure took 10 years to build from white stone that was brought to Split from the nearby island of Brac.
We chose to tour the dungeons or Cellars of Diocletian’s Palace. They are sometimes referred to as the basement halls. You can tour through these. To enter make your way to the southern part of the palace. The basement halls are lined with stalls where trinkets and souvenirs are sold. You are also able to access this area from the waterfront.
To enter into the basement area there is a gate where you will pay an entrance fee. The hours of the basement varies depending on the time of year. Several places online said they opened at 8:30 but in reality they weren’t open until 9.
Saint Domnius Cathedral
The cathedral is located in the center of Diocletian’s Palace so it’s hard to miss if you’re exploring the palace. In the old town, near the square, you will see the large bell tower. This cathedral is most well known for being the oldest Catholic cathedral in the world.
After spending the morning exploring the palace and cathedral, find a bite to eat before a leisurely afternoon at a museum or take a walking tour.
2 Days in Split Itinerary
After spending a lovely and full day in Split, on the second day take to the water! Split day tours on the water are abundant. Either by arranging a day tour or visiting nearby islands via ferry and exploring independently.
One of the most popular day trips from Split via boat includes seeing the Blue Cave. On a speedboat from Split, transit to the Blue Cave takes a little under an hour and a half. But if it’s a beautiful sunny day it’s always great to feel the sea breeze and be out on the water.
Many different tour companies offer trips to see the Blue Cave. So, definitely look around and find one that’s the duration you’d like, and many of them offer additional stops and activities such as snorkeling or time on a beach.
Another option is visiting the nearby city of Trogir if you’d like to take in more Ancient Roman architecture and history.
3 Days in Split
On the last day in Split, after packing up and storing your luggage in a hold at your hotel or in your rental car take one last stroll through Old Town.
Pro Tip: It’s always best to go places early to have less people in photos! Old Town is also gorgeous late at night as the Ancient Roman structures are lit up making for some unique photos!
After one last stroll, a little bit outside of the city center of Split we took a hike up to Marjan Hill to see some great views out over the city.
This 360 view out over Split is worth the hiking to reach the top. It was a little tricky to find exactly where to go. When driving up to the Telegrin Viewpoint we got to a point in the road where it was closed.
Eventually, we found a parking spot that was conveniently near the hiking path/stairs. It was a warm trek up some stairs and walking path but so worth it!
Kliss Fortress is located outside of the city center of Split. It’s worth the effort to get there though!
Especially if you’re a Game of Thrones fan, you’ll recognize the Fortress from some of the series that was shot in the fictional city of Mereen. Even if you aren’t a Game of Thrones fan, the view out over Split and the Adriatic Coast is absolutely stunning!
This was the last stop that we made on our way to Dubrovnik, the final city in our Croatia travels.
Weekend in Split
If you’re short on time and transit to Split isn’t far for you, Split would make the perfect weekend destination! A packed 2 days in Split is the perfect amount of time to explore.
You can experience the highlights with 2 days in Split, Croatia. Follow the itinerary to pick and choose the best 2-day Split itinerary that works for you.
Day trips from Split
Visit nearby Trogir which is a UNESCO World Heritage site. Within Trogir, there are many palaces, churches as well as a fortress on a nearby island. Trogir is said to be the most well-preserved Romanesque-Gothic city in central Europe.
Day on the water
One of the things I was really looking forward to was our day boat tour to the Blue Cave. Out of all days in Croatia, it was the only day that rained and the tour was canceled!
This is one of the most popular tours to do from Split. Instead, we decided to visit Hvar independently via ferry and we ended up having an amazing day!
You could spend several days on Hvar and stay here as a part of your Croatian travels. We chose to visit for a day after our boat tour was canceled. It was relatively easy to buy a ticket on the ferry even the night before.
Once on Hvar, you’ll enter near the visitor center. We spoke to someone there about a wine tour and she was able to connect us to a local who operated them and book one same day!
Many of the restaurants and bars were closed when we were there in early May, but as a local told us some businesses take breaks or close for short periods of time before the really busy summer season.
Read more about our lunch, wine tour, and the lovely day spent on Hvar.
Islands near Split
The closest islands to the coastal city of Split are Brac and Hvar. Bizevo Island is a very popular island to travel to due to the proximity of the Blue Cave. To get to Bizevo Island you will need a private boat transfer. The travel time will depend on what type of boat it is and how many passengers are on board.
The easiest islands to get to from Split are Brac, Solta, Hvar, Vis, Lastovo, and Korcula.
Krka National Park
Tack on some time in Krka National Park before getting into Split or on your way out of Split. Plitvice Lakes National Park is the more well-known National Park in Croatia, but Krka is definitely beautiful in its own right.
Since we came from Zadar we spent the majority of a day exploring Krka National Park before actually heading to Split to check into our accommodation. Krka National Park is located only about a one-hour drive from Split (85 km/53 miles).
FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions):
How many days to stay in Split?
Spend at least two days in Split. This will allow you to explore Old Town and Diocletian’s Palace as well as spend a day on the water or on nearby islands such as Hvar or Brac. If you want to explore beyond, three days is also a great amount of time to spend in Split.
Is Split worth visiting?
Yes, Split is a gorgeous city on the Adriatic Ocean Dalmatian coast of Croatia. With access to explore history, natural beauty, and great food and drink you can’t go wrong visiting Split during your time in Croatia. Split and Dubrovnik are two of the most visited cities in the country!
When to visit Split?
The best time weatherwise to visit Split is from June through August. This will, however, be the busiest. So, visiting in May or September during the shoulder season. When the weather is still great but the crowds are a little smaller is truly the best time to visit Split, Croatia.
What is Split, Croatia known for?
Split is most known for the ancient ruins of the Palace of Diocletian as it is a UNESCO World Heritage site. It is revered as a gateway to the nearby Croatian islands. Split is the second largest city in Croatia, so it is a popular tourist destination.
Was Game of Thrones filmed in Split, Croatia?
Yes, some parts of the HBO series, Game of Thrones were filmed in Split. The basement of Diocletian’s palace was used to film scenes of Daenerys and her dragons. A little bit outside of Split (11km/7 miles), Kliss Fortress was also used in Game of Thrones to depict the city of Mereen.
How do you get from Split Croatia to Greece?
There are several ways to get from Split, Croatia to Greece. Flying is going to be the fastest option. But you can also take a bus, train, or a ferry. Depending on the time of year and how much time you have will help determine which is the best for you. Omio is a great tool to search and compare!
Does Split have good nightlife?
Yes! Split has excellent bars and restaurants that are open late. Whether you really want to tie one on or you just want to enjoy a few beverages after dinner Split has what you’re looking for. Many are in the pedestrian area of Old Town. Some of the streets and walkways can get confusing (especially after a few pints!)
What airlines fly into Split Croatia?
Several airlines fly directly into Split’s airport. easyJet, Jet2, British Airways, American Airlines, Wizz Air UK, TUI, Croatia Airlines, and Finnair all do. During high season (June-August) there are many more options to fly into Split. Google flights can assist you in finding the best flight on different airlines. You can even track flights to monitor the price.
Can you rent a boat in Split Croatia?
Yes, you can rent a boat in Split. There are several companies where you can rent or charter a boat for a day. If you rent a boat, in Croatia it is required that at least one person be over the age of 18 and a certified skipper with a valid VHF radio license.
Where do cruises dock in Split Croatia?
At the Split Cruise port terminal. Split has a large port area where cruises dock, ferries dock and pick up passengers and where day boat tours will pick up tourists each day. The ferries in Split have services to Hvar, Vrac, Slota, and also to Italy (Ancona). The port is a 10-minute walk to Split’s Old Town.
Final Thoughts: Split itinerary 2 days
After Spending a little bit more time in Split versus other stops during 8 days in Croatia including: Zagreb, Plitvice Lakes, and Zadar I can safely say that Split definitely lives up to the hype! With itinerary inspiration to spend two days in Split (or 3!), you‘ll have an amazing time.
There’s so much to do both in Split, on a day trip to nearby islands, or spending time in the nearby Krka National Park. I hope this helped to plan your trip to Split or inspired you to visit soon!