Split, a 1,700 years old city at the centre of the Dalmatian region of Croatia looks like a city concocted out of one’s dream. If a city has some people who can say “I live in a palace by the bluest sea”, what else is it but a dream?! The enormous 4th century Diocletian’s Palace and its ruins spread all across the city which has an infectious spirit of bliss, a pace so relaxing that it is therapeutic and a force of attraction so strong that it’ll make you contemplate about moving to Split forever while you sit by the Adriatic sea.
The Diocletian’s Palace is the star of Split. It was built during the later parts of the 3rd century and early 4th century A.D, for the Roman emperor’s retirement years. Great choice of location, Your Majesty! The imposing Roman architecture is now a UNESCO world heritage site that hosts bars sending out thumping music, pubs, shops, restaurants, tourists, narrow silent alleys that could turn into a maze, short stairs that lead to residential apartments and locals going around with their routine lives (hopefully aware and grateful about living in a grand Roman palace!) The basement of the palace houses souvenir shops which are so well-stocked that you might need blinkers to go past them if you want to hold on to your sweet money.
Step out of the palace and face the insane Adriatic Blue. I find no appropriate way to describe this shade of blue other than naming it after the Sea. Get enchanted by the colours and cool winds and drift away into your thoughts, but make sure to return and go for some brilliant seafood meals. The hospitality and the quantities are so amazing that you’ll automatically loosen up (and so will your waistline) . One needs to be a hopeless cynic to be able to complain about anything at all! After a meal that touches the soul, one either lays down on the coast while the world passes by (of course in other faster time zones) or, one can also go chasing the sunset. The sunsets are beyond gorgeous. Watch the sun turn red and gradually retire behind the mountains; the clouds join the party to absorb the many magical shades of red and in turn convince the blue waters to do the same – this sight will remain etched forever.
It’s been 20 days since I returned from Split and I still think I was a fool to have left behind all the beautiful happy people, the awe-inspiring food, the magical blue sea and the glorious sunsets!