Wednesday, October 22, 2014

From Dubrovnik to Split, Croatia

Cheap Dubrovnik Tours picked us up at 8.00 to take us to Split.  We thought this would be a better option as we could stop and take photos along the way, whereas the bus would mean we were stuck in the bus.  Unfortunately it didn't work out as we liked, but we got to Split nice and early, and we did manage a couple of places for photography on the way.

We were taken down to a little bay with an abandoned house, that nature was gradually claiming back...

Rachel up on the stairs taking photos of the 'lounge'. Our driver was getting worried about our safety!

We stopped to have morning tea. I have no idea what they were called but they were delicious!

A bit further on we stopped for photography at a little picturesque village..

Leaving the village we came across this country scene.  The clouds were starting to look a bit weird!

A long hike up a hill and this opened up for views.  What a beautiful country Croatia is...

I have no idea what these clouds are, or what they convey other than bad weather coming, but I had never seen anything like it!

We dumped our bags at the apartment then walked into split – only a 5 min walk to the old town from our apartment which was great.  Rachel was not feeling so good, but we headed to the bus station to get our tickets to Zadar for tomorrow.

Split is the second-largest city of Croatia and the largest city of the region of Dalmatia. It lies on the eastern shore of the Adriatic Sea, centred on the Roman Palace of the Emperor Diocletian. It is one of the oldest cities in the area. While it is traditionally considered just over 1,700 years old counting from the construction of Diocletian's Palace in 305 CE, archaeological research relating to the original founding of the city as the Greek colony of Asp√°lathos in the 4th century BCE establishes the urban history of the area as being several centuries older. The city turned into a prominent settlement around 650 AD, when it became successor to the ancient capital of the Roman province of Dalmatia, Salona. Split became a Byznantine city, and later drifted into the sphere of the Byzantine vassal, the Republic of Venice. For much of the High and Late Middle Ages, Split enjoyed autonomy as a free city, caught in the middle of a struggle between Venice and the King of Hungary for control over the Dalmatian cities. After a long period of Hungarian rule, Venice eventually prevailed.

Prokurative , or officially the Republic Square, the famed Mediterranean plaza in the center, also known as a stage for cultural events in the city

One of the entrances into the old Town..

Inside the Old Town...

One of the narrow streets in Split, if not the narrowest!

We wandered around a bit more, and found these singers in the Diocletian Palace singing traditional Croatian Capellas.  They were amazing.

The Palace was decorated with numerous 3500 year old granite sphinxes originating from the site of Egyptian Pharaoh Thutmose III. Only three have survived the centuries. One is still located on the Peristyle, the second sits headless in front of Jupiter's Temple, and a third is in the city museum.  I guess this is the one located on the Peristyle !

Archeological work still goes on inside Split...

As well as building reconstruction...

Furniture makers working in the street...

Stopped for dinner at a pizza place and I had a glass of red wine for 20 kuna – which was really nice.  Rachel felt worse so Steven walked her back to the apartment while I kept wandering around.  I met Steven back at the cup sculpture about 15 mins later but while I had been walking around I had found a hairdresser that would cut and tidy up my hair for only 75 kuna or 10 euros.  So I booked it, then showed Steven where it was, so he could find me at 8.00 when it was finished.
The hairdresser was brilliant and cut my hair really well – super pleased with it, and I jokingly told them I’d like to book another appointment in 10 years!  Lots of laughs.

People were sitting around drinking wine and listening to entertainment here...

Steven and I then carried on walking around, exploring the little alleyways, and taking photos of the town as night fell.  At about 10pm we decided to head back, but we found a winebar and stopped for some red wine – beautiful.  When I told the waiter I was from Marlborough he just about swooned and said it’s the best wine growing region he knows!
Rachel was already sound asleep when we got in.

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