How to Spend 3 Days in Split, Croatia: A Complete Guide

Split, Croatia, is a vibrant and historic destination that offers a mix of ancient and modern attractions, stunning scenery, and delicious cuisine. 

With its rich history and culture, including Unesco-listed Dioclentian’s Palace, beautiful beaches, and vibrant atmosphere, Split has something for everyone. 

Find out how to spend three days in Split Croatia, the best things to do and see, and where to eat in this fantastic city. 

Discover what Split Croatia offers when visiting with kids and as a couple, and what souvenirs to bring home from your trip.

Day 1, Explore the Old Town and Diocletian’s Palace

Split Croatia 3 Day Itinerary, Illustration

The best way to start your 3-day itinerary in Split is to explore the Old Town and Diocletian’s Palace, the heart and soul of the city. 

After lunch, continue exploring the Old Town and visit museums, such as the Ethnographic Museum and the Gallery of Fine Arts. Don’t miss an evening walk through the city center to experience Split’s night vibe.

Spend the morning learning about Split’s history

Start your day by visiting Diocletian’s Palace. Diocletian’s Palace is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the most impressive Roman monuments in the world.

Bell Tower in Split, Croatia, Interior

Diocletian’s Palace was built in the 4th century by Emperor Diocletian as his retirement residence, and today, it is a living museum that houses many shops, cafes, restaurants, and apartments. You can join a guided tour, which lasts for 2 hours, to learn more about the palace’s history and secrets. Or you can visit it on your own!

Entry to the Palace is free, while some attractions within require tickets. Make a visit to the Bell Tower first stop on your itinerary. Go early in the morning, even before you have breakfast, in order to avoid the crowds. The views are amazing and worth a climb!

After an early start, head for a copious breakfast at Brasserie on 7 or Fig, or if you prefer to eat something on the go, stop by Kruscic Bakery for yummy artisanal bread, rolls, and pastries.

Next stop are Peskarija and Pazar, where you will immerse yourself in the local vibe. Pazar is a vibrant green market, and Peskarija is a bustling fish market. Locals love these markets, where they shop for fresh produce, including vegetables, fruits, and fish.

Spend the rest of the morning wandering around the Diocletian’s Palace, admiring its architecture, and visit the Cathedral of St. Domnius, the Peristyle, the Temple of Jupiter, and the underground cellars. 

Admission to the cellars is €7 ($8, £6). The bell tower of St. Dominus Cathedral costs €7 ($8, £6) to visit. The Temple of Jupiter also requires a ticket, priced at €3 ($3.30, £2.60). 

Visit museums and galleries in the afternoon

Have lunch at one of the many restaurants in the Old Town, such as Villa Spiza, a charming restaurant just a three-minute walk from Peristyle. Villa Spiza offers a delectable selection of typical local dishes, with their menu crafted daily based on the freshest local produce available.

Split, Croatia, Peristyle Square

After lunch, continue exploring the Old Town and visit museums, such as the Ethnographic Museum and the Gallery of Fine Arts. 

Visiting the Ethnographic Museum and the Gallery of Fine Arts in Split provides a deeper understanding of the city’s culture and history, providing insights beyond the usual tourist attractions.

These museums showcase the region’s traditions, customs, and artistic interpretations, offering a break from the crowded tourist spots. The museums can be enjoyed even in bad weather.

The Ethnographic Museum and the Gallery of Fine Arts in Split offer an affordable and enriching experience, allowing visitors to appreciate the city’s soul through its everyday life and artistic expressions.

Riva Waterfront Promenade, Split, Croatia

After visiting museums, it is a coffee time! Enjoy a coffee break at one of the cafes on the Riva, the waterfront promenade that stretches along the harbor. 

The Riva is a popular spot for locals and tourists to relax, socialize, and watch the sunset. You can also try local pastries, such as krafne (doughnuts) or fritule (fried dough balls). A coffee and a pastry will cost you around €4 ($4.40, £3.40) per person.

Explore Split’s Nightlife: From Dining to Partying

Walking through the city center, you can experience Split’s night vibe. For dinner, head to Uje Oil Bar, a cozy and modern restaurant specializing in olive oil and Mediterranean cuisine. Try tuna tartare, lamb chops, or a cheese platter, and pair them with wine and olive oil.

Bar Sistema, Split
Photo credit: Bar Sistema

For an authentic taste of Dalmatian cuisine, visit taverns Fetivi or Kod Hvaranina. Chevap by Duje Pisac is the go-to spot in Split for cevapi, a Balkan favorite skinless sausage.

If you’re still in the mood for drinks or a party after dinner, we have some great recommendations for you.

For those seeking a lively night out, Charlie’s Bar, Shotgun Shooters, and Sanctuary Cantina are fantastic spots catering to the younger crowd.

The Ghetto Club, a local favorite in Split, boasts almost a cult-like popularity. Jazz enthusiasts will find their haven at Marvlvs Jazz Library Bar, offering a relaxed atmosphere with excellent music and drinks.

Wine aficionados should not miss Monika’s Wine Bar, an ideal venue to explore Croatian wines. Craft beer lovers are in for a treat at Leopold’s, The Daltonist, and Screws & Brews. For exquisite cocktails, visit Bar Sistema and Noor, our top picks for cocktail bars in Split.

Day 2, Visit Marjan Hill and the Beaches

On your second day in Split, escape the city and enjoy nature and relaxation. Start the day by going to Marjan Hill, a green oasis that overlooks the city and the sea. 

After lunch, head to one of the beaches in Marjan Hill’s footsteps. In the evening, have dinner at Dvor restaurant and enjoy Split’s lively and diverse nightlife.

In the morning, explore Marjan Hill’s trails and sights

Start the day by visiting Marjan Hill, a park on a small peninsula in the western part of Split. It is a perfect place for hiking, biking, or picnicking. Marjan Hill offers panoramic views of Split and the islands, and it is an excellent spot for taking photos.

The info point of Marijan Hill is 600 meters away from Riva. You can rent a bike at the park entrance or join a guided bike tour. Admission to the park is free, but some attractions may charge a fee. 

The Museum of Croatian Archaeological Monuments entrance is free, but you can take the guided tour for €33 ($36, £28). Make sure to visit Prva Vidilica, a breathtaking viewpoint, and the Church of St. Nicholas, 250 meters away from Prva Vidilica.

For a nice breakfast in this part of town, check Kat’s Kitchen & Deli.

Swimming and sunbathing in the afternoon

Have lunch at Buffet Fife, a popular restaurant in the Varos neighborhood of Split, known for its delicious traditional Dalmatian cuisine and warm hospitality. On average, a meal at Fife costs between €20 and €30 ($22-$32, £17-£26) per person. 

Kasjuni Beach, Split

After lunch, head to one of the beaches near Marjan Hill, such as Kasjuni, Bene, or Jezinac.

Or, to change the scenery, head to Bacvice Beach, on the opposite side of the old town from Marjan Hill. The sandy Bacvice Beach is the most popular beach in Split, and it is less than a 10-minute walk from Diocletian Palace. 

Spend your afternoon swimming, sunbathing, kayaking, or paddle-boarding. Access to the beaches is free, but you pay for amenities such as sun beds, sun umbrellas, or sports equipment, should you decide to use them.

fine dining and Dancing in the evening

In the evening, continue your beach-themed second day in Split by visiting the restaurant Dvor, elegantly perched above Firule Beach.

Risotto, Restaurant Dvor, Split

Boasting the most delightful terrace in Split, Dvor offers the perfect setting for dining al fresco with breathtaking sea views. Furthermore, the kitchen is masterfully run by Hrvoje Zirojevic, one of Croatia’s best chefs. Be sure not to miss his exquisite seafood risotto!

After dinner, enjoy a nightcap at one of the bars we mentioned earlier. Hit the dance floor in the Fabrique Pub, or experience the local vibe and good music in the Adriatic Social Club.

Day 3, Take a Day Trip

On your third and final day in Split, take a day trip to nearby destinations and experience something different.

Visit Trogir, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Krka Waterfalls, one of seven Croatian National Parks, or head to Hvar, one of the most popular Croatian islands.

A Day trip to Trogir

Trogir is a charming medieval town and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It is about 30 kilometers (18 miles) from Split, and you can reach it by bus, boat, or car.

Trogir, Croatia, Courtyard

You can easily visit Trogir from Split on a half-day trip.

There is a public bus, number 37, departing from the Bus terminal Sukoisan, and the journey takes about an hour (it has 37 stops). The ticket bought online or at the machine is €2 ($2.2, £1.7) per person, and if you buy it from the bus driver, then it costs €4 ($4.40, £3.40).

Several bus companies have a regular line to Trogir from the city center’s central bus station. The ride lasts 30 minutes, and the ticket costs between €3 ($3.30, £2.60) and €4.5 ($5, £3.80).

You can also take a one-hour boat drive from the Riva to Trogir for €8 ($8.80, £6.80) per person.

Trogir is known for its well-preserved architecture, beautiful cathedral, and lively market. You can spend a few hours exploring the town and its attractions, such as the Kamerlengo Fortress, the Town Museum, or the Cipiko Palace.

For lunch, you can try Konoba Trs, which serves seafood and meat dishes for €35 ($38.50, £29.80) per person. It is located in the heart of the old town and has a beautiful terrace.

A Day trip to Krka National Park

Krka National Park is a natural wonder famous for its waterfalls, lakes, and forests. It is located about 80 kilometers (50 miles) from Split.

Waterfalls at the Krka National Park

You can visit Krka National Park from Split by taking a bus from the central bus station for €11 ($12.10, £9.40) per person or by joining an organized tour, which includes transportation, an entrance fee, and a guide.

The prices of organized tours start from €17 ($17.70, £14.70). The journey from Split to Krka Waterfalls takes about an hour and a half.

Krka National Park is great for hiking, swimming, or boating. You can admire the scenery and the wildlife and visit landmarks like the Skradinski Buk waterfall, the Visovac Island, or the Krka Monastery.

If you want to see all the main sights, go early in the morning and spend the entire day in the park. If you’re short on time, we recommend limiting your visit to one or two sites.

The admission fee to Krka National Park varies depending on the time of year. In the high season, from June to September, the price is €40 ($44.40, £34.40) per adult and €15 ($16.50, 12.80 £) per child (7-18).

The ticket includes all sites, a boat ticket from Skradin to Skradinski buk, and a bus ticket from entrance Lozovac to Skradinski buk. Boats and buses don’t run from November to March.

A Day Trip to Hvar from Split

A day trip to Hvar from Split offers an enchanting blend of natural beauty, cultural richness, and gastronomic delight, making it an essential addition to any Croatian travel itinerary.

Hvar seaside promenade

Hvar, known for its vibrant atmosphere, pristine beaches, and chic beach bars, is a perfect destination for those looking to enjoy the sun and sea.

The island’s culinary scene is a delight for foodies, offering fresh seafood and traditional Dalmatian dishes complemented by exquisite local wines.

While you’re there, don’t miss the opportunity to explore the fragrant lavender fields that dot the landscape, adding to the island’s charm.

The best way to visit Hvar from Split is on an organized boat trip, like this 5-island boat tour. Such a tour allows you to visit more places in a short time and to meet fellow passengers.

The cost of such a day trip typically ranges from €80 to €150 ($88 to $165, £69 to £130) per person, which usually includes the boat ride and a tour guide. This estimate does not cover personal expenses such as souvenirs or additional food and drinks at the island’s beach bars and restaurants.

Check all our recommendations for day trips from Split.

Reasons to Visit Split Croatia

A city of Split, a gem on the Adriatic coast, uniquely blends ancient charm with modern appeal. Whether you’re planning a family getaway or a romantic retreat, Split, Croatia, caters to all desires.

With its UNESCO-listed historic sites, crystal-clear waters, and vibrant cultural scene, the city promises an unforgettable experience.

Discover why Split, with its tailored attractions for kids and exclusive offerings for couples, is a top destination for diverse travelers.

Must-see attractions in Split, Croatia

Whether you decide to spend one-day in Split, or stay for three days, your time will swiftly pass! Here’s a list of must-visit attractions to guarantee you experience Split’s most significant landmarks.

  1. Diocletian’s Palace! Diocletian’s Palace is the city’s main attraction, attracting visitors with its interesting history and well-preserved monuments. It houses Split Old Town, a maze-like network of narrow streets, alleys, and squares that will captivate you with its charming architecture and vibrant atmosphere. Enjoy the unique atmosphere of the intersection of Roman architecture, medieval additions, and the cacophony of daily life in Split.
  2. Town Gates! Walk through the four of the town gates—the Bronze Gate, Iron Gate, Golden Gate, and Silver Gate—which served as access points to the city.
  3. The Jupiter’s Temple! Discover the ancient Roman Temple of Jupiter, which provides insights into the religious traditions that thrived in this city centuries ago.
  4. Diocletian’s Cellars! Don’t miss the underground cellars, where you can see the foundations of the palace and its original walls.
  5. The Cathedral! The Cathedral of St. Domnius is the oldest cathedral in the world and the symbol of Split.
  6. The Bell Tower! The Bell Tower of St. Domnius offers a panoramic view of Split’s skyline and coastline.
  7. The Peristyle Square! The Peristyle Square, adorned with ancient columns and surrounded by historical buildings, is one of Split’s most iconic town squares and the open-air venue for many cultural events.
  8. The statue of Grgur Ninski! Grgur Ninski became the first bishop to use the Croatian language and Glagolitic script in liturgical services, going against the Pope’s wishes. The bronze statue of Grgur Ninski is near the Golden Gate. Before leaving Split, it is customary to rub the toe of the statue of Grgur Ninski for good luck.
  9. Riva Waterfron! Walk around the Riva! The waterfront promenade is the hub of the city and the best place to enjoy the sunset.
  10. Marjan Hill! Marjan Hill provides unique views of Split and the islands and is a great photo spot.
  11. Split’s beaches! Split’s beaches are fun places to be, meet locals, and chill out on hot summer days. You cannot go wrong with whichever you choose—Bacvice, Kasjun, Kastelet, Jezinac, etc.
  12. Local konoba! Konoba means tavern! These traditional restaurants are attractive because they preserve ancient recipes and cooking techniques that have been passed down for generations. We recommend trying the unique and delicious local food at Villa Spiza, Kod Hvaranina (location), DeListes (location), or Uje.

Why Visit Split, Croatia with Kids?

Split is a family-friendly destination with much to offer for kids of all ages. It is a relatively small and walkable city, with most of the main attractions located within walking distance of each other. Below are some of the reasons to visit Split with kids.

  1. Outdoor places! Split has many parks, playgrounds, and green spaces where kids can run, play, and enjoy, like Marjan Hill, Sustipan Park, or Zvoncac Park.
  2. Kid-friendly beaches! Split has many kid-friendly beaches with shallow and clear water, sand or pebbles, and facilities like sunbeds, umbrellas, showers, and toilets. Explore Bacvice, Firule, or Znjan.
  3. Interesting attractions! Split has many museums and attractions that are educational and entertaining for kids, such as the Aquarium, the Froggyland, the Live Museum, and the Game of Thrones Museum.
  4. Great choice of activities and tours! Split offers many fun and adventurous activities and tours for kids, such as kayaking, rafting, zip-lining, or sailing.
  5. Kid-friendly restaurants! Split has many kid-friendly restaurants and cafes, like Bokeria and Mazzgoon, with menus, high chairs, and crayons.

Why Visit Split, Croatia as a Couple?

Split is a romantic destination that offers both intimacy and an urban vibe for couples. There are many reasons why you should visit Split as a couple.

  1. Historic Old Town! Split’s Old Town is perfect for strolling, holding hands, and taking photos. You can also find many cozy and charming places to stop, such as the Peristyle, the Vestibule, or the Pjaca.
  2. Stunning coastline! Split’s coastline is ideal for enjoying the sun, the sea, and the breeze. You can also find many secluded and intimate relaxing spots, such as Kasjuni, Bene, or Jezinac.
  3. Vibrant nightlife! Split’s nightlife is suitable for any mood and taste. You can find bars, pubs, clubs, and live music venues to have a drink, dance, or listen to music. Some of the popular spots are Fabrique, Ghetto, and Marvlvs Jazz Library Bar.
  4. Delicious cuisine! Split has rich and excellent cuisine based on fresh and local ingredients. Many cafes and restaurants in Split offer a romantic and cozy atmosphere and serve dishes like seafood, meat, cheese, or wine. Some recommended places are Dvor, Uje Oil Bar, or Villa Spiza.
  5. Day trips! Split offers many exciting and memorable day trips and excursions. Some of the nearby destinations offer a different perspective of Croatia, such as Trogir, Krka National Park, or the islands of Hvar, Brac, or Vis.

What Souvenirs to Buy in Split, Croatia?

Discover Croatia’s finest souvenirs in Split! A treasure trove of Croatian delicacies and crafts awaits!

Taste the variety of olive oils and Maraschino liqueur, sip on Plavac Mali or Pošip wines, and indulge in traditional Dalmatian sweets.

Explore local crafts with Nadalina chocolates, lavender products, Klapa music CDs, Break Time nautical bracelets, and Jaman Art phone cases.

Find unique souvenirs like Studio Naranca jewelry, 757 natural cosmetics, cool print T-shirts, handmade bags by Bag&Co, and Marinski Heartmade ceramics. Don’t miss trying the renowned Pag cheese.

How to get around Split, Croatia?

There are many ways to get around Split, each with pros and cons.

Walking is the best way to get around Split, as it is the most convenient and enjoyable way to experience the city. The city center is compact and pedestrian-friendly, and you can easily walk to all the main attractions, such as the Diocletian’s Palace, the Riva promenade, the Cathedral of Saint Domnius, and the Marjan Hill.

However, if you stay further away from the old town, you can mix and match different transportation options to suit your needs and make the most of your trip.

The city boasts an efficient bus network connecting key destinations, including the airport, ferry port, bus station, train station, and major shopping centers. Additionally, convenient bus routes are available to nearby beaches and museums. Tickets can be purchased directly from the bus driver, kiosks, or vending machines, offering one-hour access across any bus line. Daily or weekly passes provide unlimited rides for those seeking more extensive travel options, ensuring a hassle-free city exploration.

 You can rent a bike from one of the many rental shops in the city or use a bike-sharing service like Nextbike, which has stations all over the city.

 You can also use ride-sharing services like Uber, Bolt, or taxis to travel shorter distances.

Where To Park In Split, Croatia?

Traveling by car offers more flexibility and independence than relying on public transportation. With a car, you can explore scenic routes and reach places that are not easily accessible by public transport.

Parking near train station, Split, Croatia

However, finding a parking spot in Split can be difficult, especially during the summer season when both tourists and locals flock to the city.

There are several parking options available in Split, depending on your budget and preferences.

Private parking lots or garages are usually located near major hotels, shopping centers, or tourist destinations. The prices and availability of these parking facilities may vary depending on the location, season, and demand.

There are a few convenient parking lots in the city center. The parking lot near next to the Riva promenade (location) costs €4 ($4.40, £3.40) for the first hour and then €5 ($5.50, £4.30) per hour.

The bus/train station’s parking lot (location) costs €1.5 ($1.65, £1.30) for the first hour and €2 ($2.20, £1.70) for every subsequent hour. The daily parking rate is €23.

The parking lot at Stari Plac (location) charges €1.5 ($1.65, £1.30) per hour and €20 per day ($22, £17).

Split has a street parking system that’s organized into different zones, each marked by a color-coded sign. The zones are green, yellow, and red. Green is the cheapest option and provides plenty of space, but it’s located the farthest from the city center. Payment for street parking is convenient and accessible via SMS, a parking app, or coin-operated machines.

Where To Stay In Split, Croatia?

Split is a popular tourist destination and, as such, offers a wide array of accommodation options. The rates depend on the season, the type of lodging you choose, and its location within the city. 

The city boasts an extensive selection of hotels, ranging from affordably priced options to the pinnacle of luxury. These establishments are conveniently located across different areas of the city, ensuring that every traveler finds their perfect match.

For those seeking a blend of privacy, spaciousness, and independence, apartments in Split present an excellent alternative, often at a more economical price point. The variety of apartments is vast, including everything from cozy studios to lavish penthouses, scattered across the Split’s diverse neighborhoods.

 Whatever you choose, we strongly recommend booking early.

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