Three Hidden Gems of Split
20 Apr 2016

When coming to Split as a tourist, some landmark places must be visited – the Diocletian’s palace, the St. Duje Cathedral, Prokurative, Peristil and so on…

What about the less known, secret, but still stunning landmarks only a few people visit and are known mostly to the locals? So, if you want a special view of Split do listen to our advice and see things most people do not (and it’s their loss)!

The three parts we will introduce to you are:

  1. Sustipan
  2. Varoš
  3. Radunica

SUSTIPAN:

Sustipan

One of the most beautiful spots in Split, perfect for a chill out session in the early afternoon, after a tasty lunch in some of the konobas in the center.

Situated in the south west part of the Split harbor, Sustipan has a long history, not as long as the Diocletian’s palace, but still quite impressive. Named after the Saint Stephen convent, it dates back to the early Medieval ages, when this whole part was outside the city walls and used for agricultural purposes. It gained notability for being the town cemetery, but it was ousted from use in 1962 and moved to Lovrinac, which is Split’s official graveyard today – and rightfully so, since the number of citizens of Split more than tripled in the 20th century and Sustipan was left as a space too small for this new onslaught of people.

Sustipan is the perfect blend of sea, stone and grass, and it’s adorned with an elegant “gloriette” (resembling a gazebo) made in the classicist style. Lying on the grass and watching the sea and the islands is a true moment deluxe for any tourist (and Split locals). Also playing outdoor games like badminton and frisbee is something often done there.

VAROŠ:

Varos

Want to see how people lived in Split in the middle ages? Today, Diocletian’s Palace is a mix and match of different time periods, dating from the antique times up until the 19th century, and certantly has some major medieval elements.
Yet, Varoš, it’s „suburb“ – that takes the crown as the most “medieval” part of town, some parts dating back from the 14th century.

Inhabited by the lower classes for centuries, Varoš has that peculiar sense of and modest but vivacious appeal of a working class, non-fancy part of town. The fine and flashy palaces and churches for the rich and high classes, while nice to see, still convey little to no info about the life of “everyday”, normal people that made most of the population of Split – they outnumbered the elite greatly, and made the city „roll“ more than the many elites did.

Accordingly, in Varoš there are no monumental edifices, no huge buildings, no palaces and lavish churches, but an intriguing play of narrow streets, small houses and steep walking slopes. Also, Varoš is the only part of the city center where you can get lost. Walking down the seemingly endless maze like streets, casually and with no goal in mind but with an exploring spirit ready to find new street scenes and petite stone churches – is something everybody should experience. Some of the curches to see: Gospe o’ Soca, Sveti Križ, Sveti Frane.

Finish your trip with the upwards walking tour, ending at the stunning Marjan vista, and enjoy the “view from the top” on Split.

RADUNICA:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The other suburb of the old city center, Radunica got it’s name after „radun“ – old expression for a water spring. Much like Varoš, it’s a populist part of town, made for the immigrants coming from other parts of Croatia, most notably the Republic of Poljice.

Today, the main Radunica attraction is the big party called „Days of Radunica“, held annually in the last week of June. Hopefully you can see it sometime, but even if you miss it, you can still enjoy walking up and down the old cobble streets, discovering hidden alleyways and small squares and chatting with friendly locals.

That’s it for now! Tune in for more next week!

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