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Published: June 26th 2017
Geo: 43.5127, 16.4424
We left this morning early and drove south. We were driving along the Adriatic coast and there were many picturesque scenes along the way. Our first stop was by the Krka river which had rocky cliffs on either side and mussell farms along the banks. From there we drove along the coast which had many pretty inlets etc. Our next stop was at Trogir.
This is situated on an island and is a very ancient city. We were taken into the centre of the city and then given free time. We walked back to the main square and went into the Cathedral of St Lawrence. This was dated from the 13th century with a wonderful entrance arch depicting Adam and Eve. We looked into the interior and then climbed up to the bell tower which gave us a great view of the town. The streets are very narrow and the whole feel of the place is old and welcoming.
From there we walked to the harbour side of the island and eventually found a restaurant for lunch. We had looked at the Sea Walls of the Venetian period which are still intact. There was a Venetian fort at the end
of the promenade with towering walls. After a super meal we wandered back through the city to our pick up point.
From there we travelled towards Split. Our next stop was at Salona. This was where the original Roman settlement along this coast was situated. Before the Romans, the Greeks had colonised this area for trade. We stopped at an archaeological site where there is an early Christian necropolis, dating from the first century AD. This has been excavated and there are many of the tombs still visible although many artefacts have been removed and used in other areas. We walked to where the original Roman forum was situated but the only ruins there now are early Christian ones. Unfortunately, the Roman ampitheatre was closed due to excavations at the site.
We then drove into Split. We stopped for our city tour at the seafront outside the south gate into Diocletian's Palace. It is amazing how they have kept and incorporated buildings from the second century AD into the city walls etc. A whole city has grown up inside the original outline of the palace and there are still parts of the original building being used today. There are whole layers of
history here from Roman to Venetian to modern Croatia.We walked in through the south gate into the substructure of the palace where wonderful vaulted ceilings now house souvenir shops. The original central courtyard of the palace is still there, with Corinthian columns and archways now used as a concert space for music and especially opera. Outside the north gate was a huge statue of Gregorius of Nin who had fought to have the Mass said in Croatian. Close to the western side of the palace a whole network of buildings has grown over the centuries. There was a fabulous Town Hall built in the Venetian style in an interesting square.
We spent about an hour having a wander on our own after our tour and I only wish it was longer. Our hotel was too far out of town to return. That night we were taken to a Konoba restaurant for some typical Croatian food. We had some great fish, accompanied by a duo who sang Croatian songs but also knew some western standards that had us all singing along!!. A good night with some good Croatian wine,(which isn't bad!!).
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