To decide where to sleep in Split, if you visit it for the first time, it could be quite complicated. This short guide tries to give an overview of the most famous and popular neighborhoods in which to stay in the small Croatian town.
The picturesque Old Town of Split
As always during my travels, I pay a lot of attention to where to sleep: the point is that it is not always enough to choose a hotel based on reviews, stars or price alone, but as far as I'm concerned there is a very important factor: the area of the city where it is located. In fact, choosing the wrong area can mean long, inconvenient or expensive transfers that mean a waste of time and money.
Read here my post on what to see in Split!
Le options for sleeping in Split are plentiful and often they are also very cheap: but beware, a cheap hotel far away can cost the same as a comfortable and central hotel if you count the money of the taxi!
It is therefore definitely worth spending a few more minutes in researching the pros and cons of each neighborhood before choosing where to sleep in Split by carefully evaluating the following factors: budget available and the type of experience you want to do, whether in the name of sea and relaxation, cultural travel or shopping and nightlife. To help you choose, here is a guide to the best neighborhoods in Split.
Diocletian's Palace and Old Town
within the Diocletian's Palace there are rooms and apartments that can be rented. Generally they are nice and very clean but they have a cons: being in the city center and the nightlife they can be really noisy and because of their super-central location they can be very expensive compared to the apartments outside the Palazzo.
For: they are very central and a stone's throw from the main places of interest which means that you do not need public transport, that even the beaches are easily reachable on foot, that you have nearby bars and restaurants and that you also have ferries and bus stations within walking distance .
Cons: they are expensive and if you are not used to noise, keep in mind that loud music from the clubs, parties and chatter can ruin your sleep making your stay much less pleasant than it could be.
The nearby bars and restaurants are the most touristy of all which means higher prices. Another problem is parking in case you have your own car or have chosen to rent one: there are two car parks nearby but they are almost always full.
Places of interest in the Old Town of Split: Diocletian's Palace, Piazza del Peristilio, Cathedral of St. Duje, Temple of Jupiter, People's Square.
La my top pick in the Old Town is:
First Vestibul: these beautiful apartments (rated 9.9 as a location on booking.com) are very central, clean and offer, in addition to TV and wi-fi, also parking for the car or the airport shuttle! The price to be in the center of Split is super-affordable: from 29 euros for two per night.See other hotels and apartments in the Old Town of Split
Varos it is a historic district located west of the palace walls and in addition to being only 5 minutes from the city center it is also near the Marjan gardens perfect for walking, jogging or cycling.
This charismatic neighborhood with traditional stone houses with a rural flavor, narrow streets and scattered churches was developed by fishermen and farmers who came to Split to earn a living and to seek shelter from the Ottoman invasion.
Today Varos is a neighborhood in which to invest: the real estate market has exploded and boutique hotels and luxury apartments have been set up in the houses.
The Marjan gardens and the neighborhood's proximity to the city center make Varos a perfect place to sleep in Split.
As for the price, Varos may be a bit more expensive than other neighborhoods due to the proximity of the city and the Marjan gardens. Furthermore, even here parking a car could become problematic.
Places of interest in Varos: Church of the Holy Cross of Veli Varos, Marjan Hill, Church of St. Mikula, Church of Our Lady of Soca, Church of St. Francis.
My top pick in Varos:
Heritage Palace Varos: quite expensive, but one of the truly top choices in Varos is this classy hotel located 150 meters from the historic center, offering large and spotless rooms, bike and car rental, a sun terrace and the best of services. Ideal for couples who like to treat themselves well (from 125 euros / night for a double room)
Heritage Palace of Varos
The "richest" district of Split is located right above Varos and at the foot of the Marjan hill west of the old town.
Although it is an expensive neighborhood, it is possible to find hotels or apartments at a reasonable price.
Despite being on the opposite side from the beaches, they are within walking distance.
It is a quiet, family-friendly neighborhood, there is parking (ask the hotel or the landlord) and the center is within walking distance. If you have the opportunity to spend a little more, Meje is a great choice.
My top pick in Meje:
Meje Apartments: the property with the best score for value for money on booking.com in all of Split, these apartments are located in a quiet area. Clean and with comfort at a super competitive price (from 50 euros / night) they are loved by customers especially because the beach is just a few minutes walk away.More hotels and apartments near the Marjan gardens
Along with Varos, too Radunica it is an ancient district and is located east of the Diocletian's Palace which is a few minutes walk away.
Radunica is famous for its famous street festival “Days of Radunica” which was first held in 1994 in an attempt to stimulate Croatia's cultural and social identities. It is held during the last week of June each year during the celebrations of St. Peter and enlivens its streets with a true folkloric atmosphere.
Split's most famous beach, Bacvice, is also about ten minutes away on foot and the Marjan Gardens are a little further away. All these neighborhoods have in common the factor that they allow you to easily walk around without having to use public transport unless you are a shopping addict and do not want to go to the shopping center area.
Like the previous ones, Radunica also has the problem of parking, but on its side it has to be a quiet neighborhood and to have an excellent choice of hotels and apartments with excellent value for money.
Highlights di Radunica: Street Festival “Days of Radunica”.
My top pick at Radunica:
Apartments Blue Lounge: another top choice in Split in terms of quality / price ratio, these delightful apartments are located on the beach front, are equipped with all comforts (airport shuttle is also available) at a super affordable cost (from 70 euros / night). Ideal for couples and families with children because on site there is also a play area for relaxing moments.
Apartment Blue Lounge di Radunica
If you are a little informed about Split, Bacvice is a name you have surely heard.
Bacvice is indeed the most popular sandy beach in Split. But it is also one of the districts of the city. Bačvice is located 200 meters from the main bus and train station and the ferry port.
It takes 6-8 minutes to reach the historic city center and the beaches are in the palm of your hand. The closest beach, of course, is Bacvice, just next to Bačvice is Ovčice beach (pebble beach), and so on until you get to Žnjan.
However, we can put Bačvice as one of the best places to sleep in Split.
I pro therefore they are: proximity to ferries, buses, the historic center and beaches.
My top pick in Bacvice:
Boutique Hotel Bacvice: a high-end hotel but with an excellent price in relation to the high quality it offers. A wonderful buffet breakfast is included in the price (from 120 euros / night for a double room). Guests have a discount in the spa & wellness center.More hotels and apartments in Bacvice
Boutique Hotel Bacvice
Cons: if you go in the height of summer, keep in mind that the beaches are often places of gathering of young people and very frequently parties are held until late at night (it would be better to say: until the following morning).
Find out about the festivals: one of them is held for 3 days in a row!
If you are young and you like partying, Bacvice also has the best clubs in town and this could be another plus point.
Znjan is one of the most beautiful districts of Split. It has everything you could want: beach bars, restaurants, playgrounds for children, hotels, parking and public transport, but it is located quite far from the historic center (about half an hour). There are no summer festivals, clubs or any kind of entertainment except a few cocktail nights with a local DJ.
In short, the only negative side is the distance from the center and some hotels and apartments could have high prices because obviously the view on the beach costs you to pay.
My top pick in Znjan:
Beachfront Holiday Apartments: a fantastic choice due to its proximity to the beach, while the center is slightly further away: under the apartments there is the bus stop. Airport shuttle, air conditioning, gym and other services make these apartments a great choice (from 55 euros / night)More hotels and apartments in Znjan
Beachfront Holiday Apartments di Znjan
Trstenik it is a neighborhood between Zenta and Znjan quite close to the beaches and is recognizable because the Radisson Blue is located here. It is 10 minutes from the city center (15-20 walking distance). Parking shouldn't be a problem.