Still no luggage...
09/04/2019 - 09/04/2019
Time to leave Hotel Villa Zarko, our home base in Kaštela, to explore Split. The hotel personnel have been wonderfully helpful in calling Split airport daily to check for our luggage (no luck). We spend at least 40 minutes per day on hold for American Airlines to check on the tracking of our luggage, with no answers. This is so time consuming and frustrating.
On our way to Split, we stopped to explore the Roman ruins in Salona, the birthplace of Diocletian, who founded the city of Split. Born to commoners in Croatia, Diocletian rose through the ranks of the Roman army, eventually ruling the Roman Empire from 284 to 305. He became Emperor when the Roman Empire was in decay, but ended the so-called "Crisis of the Third Century" (235–284), returning Rome to its former glory. After twenty years of rule, Diocletian abdicated his throne and returned to his homeland; the palace that he built near his birthplace became the city of Split. It is said that Diocletian "invented" retirement. Here is what the colosseum is believed to have looked like, and here are the ruins.
We took a guided tour of Diocletian's Palace (a UNESCO World Heritage site), which is considered to be the most complete Roman palace in the world. The palace was constructed over a ten year period in the mid-4th century (using around 15,000 slaves), and encompasses some 220 buildings within its boundaries, including homes, bars, hotels and cafes.
Here are various sides of the palace walls. They have been transformed over the years into shops and cafes.
The perastil is the courtyard outside the actual palace.
Our guide told us that this Egyptian sphinx is one of 13 left in the world, and the only one that was never beheaded and repaired.
Fun Fact: The palace's cellar was used in season four of Game of Thrones as Daenerys' Throne Room, and the underground caverns were used in scenes where Daenerys kept her dragons. Now you know.
At noon, there is a little pageant where the emperor greets his subjects.
In this central tower (which is now an open air area), there is a group that sings traditional Klapa music. This music is traditional a cappella singing. The word Klapa translates to "group of friends," and the singers are typically male. In 2012, Klapa was added to the UNESCO "Intangible Cultural heritage of Humanity."
Here are some additional views of Split.
Here are some views from outside the city walls.
We also visited the fish market.
After our tour, we spent some time shopping for items that we are going to need if our luggage never arrives, a very depressing use of time. There was time for a beer...
...before boarding the 3 PM catamaran to the island of Vis. Most of us used the 90 minute trip to nap. Here is our first view of Vis.
There are cats everywhere in Croatia, and this kitty found herself a shady spot at the catamaran dock.
We crossed to the opposite side of the island , where we checked into the Jasminka Zambarlin apartments in the small fishing village of Komiža. This will be our home base for the next four nights. I had a chance to do laundry, which was very necessary based upon our wardrobe situation. Our apartment is spacious and comfortable.
Our dinner tonight was on the waterfront, a delicious meal of salad, pizza, and wine.
Photos are tagged Croatia, Komiza and Split