Considered to be one of the most imposing Roman ruins, Diocletian’s Palace has been described as the ‘heart’ of Split. First built in the 4th century AD, the ruins are remarkably well preserved. Nowadays this labyrinth is a living, breathing part of the city, accounting for half of Split’s old town. Residents and business owners now occupy much of the old palace structure – like having a museum filled with locals going about their daily business as you browse the exhibits. There are cafes, bars, and shops to enjoy as you meander through alleys and archways. Diocletian’s Palace remains one of the most complete specimens of Roman architecture. Very much the jewel in Split’s tourism crown.
Picturesque doesn’t begin to describe the beauty of Plitvice Lakes National Park. If anything, cameras struggle to do it justice. Among the dense forest, a series of startling blue-green lakes and waterfalls weave together like an intricate lace pattern. Free boat and bus services run every half hour in the warmer months. However, some sections are only accessible by wooden footbridges and boardwalks. To trek through the park in its entirety – on foot – takes around six hours, but the cascading waterfalls, lush greenery and clouds of butterflies that drift above the boardwalks make it worth your while. You can hire a rowboat in some areas, but be aware that swimming is not permitted in any of the lakes.
The Old Town is small protrusion of medieval buildings on the island of Korčula. Rich with history, it was cleverly designed in a fishbone layout for the comfort and safety of its inhabitants. Victors can enjoy a rich array of Renaissance and Gothic architecture such as St Mark’s Cathedral and St Peter’s Church. The island also features a cluster of olive groves and vineyards. You can enjoy local wine and nibbles while you watch traditional Croatian ceremonies and dances still performed for tourist audiences.
What began as a touring exhibition has become The Museum of Broken Relationships in Zagreb, a collection of personal remnants and artefacts from failed relationships. Quirky and intensely moving, the museum accepts items from people all over the world that tell their own tale of romance gone wrong. It’s a unique approach to art and storytelling that has moved from niche exhibit to mainstream attraction. The museum aims to help us understand broader patterns of behaviour as well as offering solidarity in dealing with our own lost loves. A cathartic and intimate showcase of a universal affliction.
Croatia’s answer to Rome’s Colosseum, the Pula Arena is an imposing remnant of an ancient history. Overlooking the harbour, the limestone amphitheatre is remarkably well preserved considering it was completed in 68 AD. Thanks to its condition, Pula Arena has been incredibly useful to historians in studying ancient building techniques. The underground passages once used by gladiators now host exhibitions about viticulture and olive growing in ancient times. Above ground, this well preserved ruin is used as a concert venue as well as hosting the annual Pula Film Festival.