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CROATIA : SPLIT

The beautiful city of Split has a rich history. Today it is the economic and administrative center of Middle Dalmatia, with about 200,000 inhabitants.  

Since ancient times it has been the economic and administrative centre of the beautiful Croatian Adriatic coastal region (also known as “Dalmatia”). The city sits mainly on a peninsula on the eastern part of the island of Ciovo, although it has nowadays spread onto the mainland and encompasses the mouth of the River Cetina. The present city of Split is an organic fusion of its antique heritage and of modern architecture, set up in the beautiful Mediterranean environment and full of a sober and thoughtful atmosphere of a big city. As the scientific centre of the region, Split's scientific institutions have had remarkable results in many fields including the protection and study of cultural and natural heritage, oceanography, fishery, Adriatic agricultural cultures, etc. Split is connected by rail to the hinterland, by ferry boats to the Adriatic islands, Italy and Croatia, and to the rest of the world by its international airport. 

The site was first settled when, at the end of the third century AD, the Roman Emperor Diocletian built his palace here at a spot then called Salona, in AD303. A town developed around the palace . Diocletian’s Palace still stands in the very heart of the old part of Split, which charms visitors with its cobbled streets. The well-preserved palace has been listed as UNESCO's register of the worlds cultural heritage. The importance of Diocletian's Palace far transcends local significance because of its level of preservation and the buildings of succeeding historical periods built within its walls, which today form the very heart of old Split.  

Split's growth became particularly rapid in the 7th century, when the inhabitants of the destroyed Greek and Roman metropolis Salonae (present-day Solin) took refuge within its walls. The lovely ruins of Solin outside the city can still be explored today. In the Middle Ages, Split was an autonomous commune.   

Many of Split's historical and cultural buildings can be found within the walls of Diocletian's Palace. In addition, numerous museums, the National Theatre, and old churches and other archeological sites in the Split region make it an important cultural attraction.  Split is a busy port, with an international airport and regular ferry services with the nearby islands, the north and south Adriatic, Italy and Greece.


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