This is the perfect Split, Croatia itinerary if you have 7 days to spend in this glorious city. This is my cherished hometown and as a result, I am sure I can offer the absolute best ideas for spending an unforgettable vacation here.
Can you picture the sensation of basking in the warm Mediterranean sun, a gentle sea breeze playing with your hair, and a culture steeped in rich history at every corner? Well, this is exactly what you get in Split!
Here is a summary of what to expect from this unforgettable week-long itinerary that guarantees an experience filled with wonder, excitement, and authenticity:
- Day 1 – Podstrana.
- Day 2 – Visit Split old town (morning walking tour), visit Bacvice beach (afternoon).
- Day 3 – A full day tour to Krka National Park.
- Day 4 – Dedicate the whole day on one of the Podstrana beaches.
- Day 5 – A full day to Blue Cave Vis and Hvar Island from Split.
- Day 6 – A full day basic canyoning on Cetina River from Split.
- Day 7 – Visit Upper (Gornja) Podstrana and have a lunch at tavern Carevi Dvori with an amazing view. Order famous peka meal.
I’ll go a lot more in depth below, but first, I have to tell you a few things about Split and why I think this is the best Split itinerary for you.
Split, Croatia: Embrace the Mediterranean Magic
Split might seem a tad chaotic, especially during the peak tourist season, but this is what I consider to be part of the charm.
This city pulses with vibrant energy and it’s usually compared to Naples in Italy, for example. That’s right, Naples! It’s like a Mediterranean symphony that crescendos in the summer months, with the city buzzing from a myriad of nocturnal festivities.
If you want a more DIY type of vacation, I have shared the top 25 things to do in Split in a previous article – make sure to check it out!
Your Personalized Split Adventure
Split is the perfect place to visit in Croatia – and I am not only saying this because it’s the town where I lived most of my life in. It does offer the perfect balance of amazing beaches (check the top beaches in Split here), historical sites, culinary delights, and a flawless nightlife.
In other words, it caters to beach bums and history buffs, food connoisseurs and party animals, and everyone in between.
Detailed 7 Days in Split Itinerary
Without further ado, let’s get a bit more in depth with my recommended Split itinerary and see what you should do each day.
Day 1: Touchdown in Podstrana
Your journey begins in Podstrana, a charming coastal town where I recommend staying for the duration of your trip. You can check out the available accommodation options here.
Podstrana is a small municipality located 7 kms away from Split’s historical center and it will offer a great location, close to the main attractions, but also decent prices.
I recommend Podstrana as the most convenient small Riviera for couples and families with children just a few steps from Split, particularly during the high season (July and August).
During your first day, I suggest you take a nice walk along a nice Podstrana promenade with many beach bars and restaurants. Go for a dinner in one of amazing restaurants along the promenade and prepare for the adventure to come.
Traditional Croatian food in Split, especially in Podstrana, is something worth writing home about!
Day 2: The Grand Tour of Split
Here’s a local’s tip: forget about taking a car into Split, whether it’s rented or your own!
Believe me, finding a parking spot is like searching for a needle in a haystack. And why add stress when you can enjoy a comfortable bus ride?
Convenient bus services like Bus N°60 are available every hour, seamlessly connecting Podstrana and Split, while public transportation options throughout the city are aplenty and comfortable, too.
To make things as easy as possible, I’ve marked the Podstrana bus station in Split here on Google Maps.
Discover the Heart of Split
Taking the bus I recommended, disembark at the penultimate bus stop (Trznica – green market – better known as Pazar). Here, you will be in the vibrant epicenter of Split, just a few steps from the majestic Diocletian Palace’s Silver Gate entrance.
This is where we’re starting the second day of this amazing Split itinerary, no matter where you decide to spend your nights.
Unveil the Magic of Diocletian’s Palace
This is by far the main attraction in Split. You can wander around at your own pace, soaking in the aura of the ancient Roman Emperor’s abode, or ideally join one walking tour (which is what I recommend – to make sure you don’t miss on any important things or facts).
Check out this skip the line tour of Diocletian’s Palace: cheap and perfect for anybody!
I wrote more in depth about the amazing Diocletian Palace here – make sure to check the article out if you want the full scoop.
Travel Back in Time Through Museums
For history buffs wanting to delve deeper into the city’s past, Split houses several fascinating museums, including the City Museum and Ethnographic Museum, right within the palace walls.
How often do you get to explore a museum nestled within a UNESCO World Heritage site? Probably not that often, so make sure to take advantage and visit them all. I have a full guide to Split’s museums if these two are not enough.
Enjoy a Gastronomic Adventure
For lunch, I recommend one of the plenty on-the-go eateries and traditional taverns (konobe) that are scattered around, offering authentic and delicious Dalmatian cuisine.
Foodies will definitely not be disappointed, no matter which of these taverns they choose. I recommend looking at my previous article I wrote on where to eat in Split if you need extra recommendations.
Enjoy nature (or the beach) during the afternoon
I personally recommend visiting the tranquil greenery of Marjan hill, affectionately known as the “lungs of the city” during the afternoon.
But if you are more of a beach person, head to Bacvice, the city’s sandy beach, where you can relax with a cold beer while watching the locals play ‘picigin’, a popular beach game.
You can join in too – that’s why you are here, after all, to truly experience Croatia and its traditions.
After a tiring day full of memories, take the same bus (N° 60) from the same bus stop (Trznica or Pazar) and get back to your hotel in Podstrana.
Tomorrow is a new day on your seven days in Split itinerary. I hope you’ve enjoyed this one – there are more to come!
Day 3: Embracing Croatia’s Natural Wonders
Our third day presents you with an important decision whose outcome will be, no matter what you choose, delightful.
This is the day when I recommend opting for one of the two tours available in Split. There are plenty of options here, but sometimes less is more – and I made sure to choose the absolute best.
Check them both out and decide which one suits your style better.
Option 1: Visit Plitvice Lakes National Park
Plitvice Lakes National Park is one of Croatia’s top attractions, renowned for its ethereal beauty that leaves every visitor in awe. It’s truly a perfect vacation for those who want to take in amazing nature.
For this, I recommend the Plitvice Lakes Guided Day Tour with tickets included, meaning that you will also experience the part with a train tour, as well as a boat tour. This is the best option, in my opinion.
I have an in-depth article detailing the beauty of the amazing Plitvice lakes in Croatia, in case you want to read more about this attraction before visiting.
Option 2: Stunning Krka National Park
Alternatively, you can choose the equally stunning Krka National Park, which also offers amazing views, breathtaking natural beauty and – if you choose the tour I’m recommending below – also swimming in the lakes!
With plenty of waterfalls scattered along this national park, this tour is a bit shorter and also includes a boat ride, wine-tasting at a local winery, cheese & olive oil tasting. Pretty cool.
IMOPRTANT: Remember, these full-day tours usually run between 9 to 12 hours and depart early in the morning, typically between 07:45 AM to 09:00 AM. Therefore, don’t forget to coordinate with the tour operators regarding the time and meeting point.
Day 4: Recharging at Podstrana Riviera
I am a huge fan of slow travel and I believe that a vacation can easily turn into a nightmare if we don’t allow some rest periods during our trips.
After all, we’re here to recharge and simply bask in the joy of being away from everyday routine. This alone is satisfactory… and we’ll make it even more special by taking a bit of a rest at the middle of this itinerary.
What we’ll do today is mainly taking it slow and soaking in the serene beauty of Podstrana Riviera.
Podstrana’s Pebbled Paradise
Stretching over 6 km, the Riviera’s pebbled beaches offer an ideal space for swimming and bathing. For a truly luxurious beach experience, visit the Hotel Le Meridien Lav beach, which is my favorite beach in the region and one you will surely enjoy too.
If sitting on the beach all day isn’t your cup of tea and you can still relax by being somewhat more active, consider renting a boat or partaking in some water sports in the area.
Whether it’s learning to dive and snorkel, paddleboarding, or jet skiing, Podstrana offers a variety of water activities for all ages, from complete beginners to more experienced ones.
Day 5: Island Hopping in Central Dalmatia
Central Dalmatia, stretching from the charming old town of Trogir in the northwest to Ploce in the southeast, is home to some of the most beautiful islands on Croatia’s Adriatic sea – Brac, Hvar, Vis, and Solta.
Since these are the most beautiful islands on Croatia’s Adriatic sea, it would be unacceptable not to dedicate one of the seven days in Split to visiting one of them.
But with each one offering almost similarly amazing experiences, the question is: which one to choose? Now, this is a decision that you can make on your own, knowing that each of these islands are perfect destinations.
If you were to ask me, I would actually recommend visiting Hvar, as it is considered by many the most beautiful – and I tend to agree, although it’s still difficult to compare these islands.
Either way, all these islands are conveniently accessible for day trips, either through organized guided tours or on your own by ferry or fast catamaran from the Split harbor.
Do note that Vis, being the furthest from the mainland, is best visited via a guided tour.
Day 6: Explore the Old Town Area
After a mesmerizing island-hopping experience, we find ourselves drawn back to the city. This will be a more relaxing day, spent exploring the old town area and the plenty of attractions there.
While you did see the most important part of it when you visited Diocletian’s Palace in the second day, there’s still more to see – and also plenty of restaurants and bars where you can rest, enjoy the food, have a drink and do some people watching.
I recommend starting on the bustling Riva Promenade. This vibrant hub, my favorite haunt during balmy summer nights, is more than just a street. It’s where everything happens, and the place that leads you to the best things in Split’s old town area.
Then, walk west to the Trg Republike, an amazing place where you can enjoy the views and some (although tourist-priced) amazing food.
I simply recommend letting yourself get lost on the plenty of small medieval-looking streets in the area, taking in the buildings and the souvenir shops.
Day 7: Explore the Best of Podstrana Municipality
On our final day, let’s pay homage to the very heart of our journey – the Podstrana Municipality.
Stretching along the coast, the municipality is a tapestry of beautiful settlements: Mutogras, Sveti Martin (Saint Martin), Grbavac, Grljevac, Miljevac, Strozanac, and the old settlement of Gornja Podstrana (Upper Podstrana), perched under the hilltop Perun, 200 meters above sea level.
If you’re fond of cycling, Podstrana offers an array of trails, ranging from easy, flat paths to challenging mountain tracks, with each turn unveiling stunning views that are nothing short of breathtaking. You can easily rent a bike and explore the area.
If cycling isn’t your forte, how about a hiking adventure? It requires minimal effort yet serves as the perfect way to explore the region and uncover the hidden natural beauty.
Or, of course, if you prefer to do so in your last day, just head over to the beach again and relax!
Wrapping Up Our Split Adventure after 7 Days
As we reach the end of this perfect seven days in Split itinerary, I truly hope you know exactly what has to be done and you’re inspired to make the most out of your time in the Central Dalmatia region.
There are different approaches to how to spend your time, but I did my best to include all main options above, so that you leave Croatia satisfied and recharged, not just more stressed out and tired than when you arrived.
If you have additional destinations or areas that you think one should definitely visit when in Split for a week, make sure to leave a comment below.