At first it is a town of around 200,000 inhabitants. It is the second largest city in Croatia. A town on the coast of the Adriatic sea, that is blessed with the seas blue color, clear sky and most of the year golden sunshines. Sunshines which maintain on the sky during most of the year, especially during summer, will give you a specific feeling which even has a name, Fjaka, a state of numbness and 100% relaxation (best word to translate it would be Nirvana). The Riva, our main "catwalk“, is filled with bars and restaurants, but also with a view on the port, the nearby islands and of course our hill Marjan. All of this will for sure make your walks, coffees, lunches or dinners even more pleasant and enjoyable. Close to the Riva, you will find our most famous cathedral, Saint Duje's. Saint Duje, being our patron, is celebrated every year on the 7th of May with a huge celebration in the town during which we celebrate not only our patron and town but also the tradition and culture of our ancestors. Another fun fact is that one can buy a ticket and climb the St.Duje's cathedral to its top, and then enjoy the panoramic view of the whole town.
A bit of history
Now a bit of history. The first inhabitant of this town was a Roman emperor, Diocletian, who built himself a luxurious mansion or better to say a Palace, with around 30,000 square meters, in which he could spend his later retirement. Upcoming centuries created a town out of this Palace, which is even this day today present and breathes with huge historical importance.
Summer here lasts for a long time. We dare to say the toursitic season starts even around March/April and may last up to October. This period is therefore filled with tons of activities for all ages. Such as many festivals and concerts, whether for younger ones (such as Ultra Europe) or for more older ones, something more sofisticated but still very amusing (Splitsko ljeto - Split summer - cultural event which lasts through most of the summer). Numerous nightclubs with various types of music will fulfill almost anyone's taste and make one's night out even more memorable. On the other hand winters, even though they are short might be boring, filled with both warm (jugo) winds and cold (bura) winds. However nowadays, the local authorities have worked hard on keeping a good mood in the town during winter and Christmas days by bringing many wooden houses that offer us many specialties, whether food, sweets or drinks, and also some souvenir shops. All of this keeps the people coming, helps them in having a great time and keeps the good spirit going. Also be aware of the snow !!! Even though it falls every 5 to 10 years, it can get pretty rough (just like it did in 2012.) J Who knows it might happen this year to you too...
Dalmatian food is also something special and also very important for the locals. We can say that fish is respected very much and that there are many recipes that you must try during your stay. After fish comes meat, whether is dried such as „pršut“(prosciutto) and „panceta“, or grilled and boiled such as lamb, beef, veal etc., or just placed in a sandwich such as our beloved „ćevapi“. After these two comes everything else. The town fishmarket and other open markets will give you a chance to always buy fresh fish, fruits and vegetables, and also an interesting opportunity to practice your Croatian with the local salers when for example negotiating a price ;).
Now, a very complicated topic, concerning the local people. Most of them have this specific Southern mentality and personality. This means, sometimes they are very proud, sometimes they are easy going, sometimes maybe even too relaxed, sometimes they are lazy, sometimes too temperamental, sometimes they are rude, sometimes they can be a bit irresponsible, but just sometimes. However, deep in them there is always present this warm spirit and good heart, which will always help you and which will accept you for what you are. People from Split went through lot in their past. From various governments and authorities that were in charge in their town, than the War that occured during 1991.-1995. For the independence of Croatia, and all up to the present day. But most importantly they survived all of this, thanks to their pride, unbreakable spirit, and their very well known sense of humor and eternaly good mood. And it is exactly this sense of humor and good mood that will help you integrate easily here and help you in your adaptation and later on in everyday life for sure.
One last thing, an important one actually to note. Split is very proud of their Sports heritage, and it carries even the nickname „The sportiest town in the world“ due to numerous famous sportsmen and sportswomen. Don't trust us? Ivano Balić, named to be the best handballer in history of this sport by the fans, winner of Olympic gold in 2004. Blanka Vlašić, our high-jumper that won silver Olympic medal in 2008, and World Cup Gold medals in 2007 and 2009. Duje Draganja, swimmer that won silver Olympic medal in 2004. The Skelin brothers, won Olympic gold in rowing in 2004. Slaven Bilić, former Croatian national team football coach. Toni Kukoč, one of Europeans best basketball players ever, three time NBA Champion with the Chicago Bulls. Many tennis players such as Nikola Pilić, Mario Ančić (Olympic bronze medal in 2004.) and one of the greatest legends of this sport, the guy that won Wimbledon in 2001. with a „wild card“, after previously losing three times in finals, Goran Ivanišević. Plus we must mention the pride of this town, the football team of Hajduk Split, with its irreplacable fans, its long and successful history plus many football players and coaches that it gave to the world. The eternal derby between Hajduk and Dinamo Zagreb, is always a spectacle worth of seeing. But, Split also gave many artists (Emanuel Vidović), writers (Marko Marulić), composers (Ivo Tijardović, Jakov Gotovac, Josip Hatze), singers (Oliver Dragojević), actors (Boris Dvornik), scientists (Miroslav Radman) and other people to be proud of, but we will not bother now naming all of them, since it would take a lot of time.
All in all, for a town with about 200,000 inhabitants, to have so many of its people leaving such a trace in the world is something to be proud of. So we ask you why wouldn't you succeed in doing the same if you come to live and study here?
Hopefully we brought Split closer to you with this article and we hope that you are now impressed with Split at least a bit more than before reading all of this.