A city within a Roman palace, today a UNESCO world heritage site.
For me, Split is the most beautiful city on the planet. And it’s thanks to Roman Emperor Diocletian that it exists. In 295 AD, he ordered the building of a vast and splendid palace, which was to be his retirement home. Today, the heart of the city lies within the walls of that same palace. Rectangular in plan, it measures approximately 215 m by 180 m. Each of the four outer walls bears a monumental gate: the Golden Gate, the Iron Gate, the Silver Gate and the Bronze Gate. The central public meeting space was, and still is, the Peristil (an arcaded courtyard). In Diocletian’s days, when he made his public appearances here, his people would have knelt out of reverence. His private apartments lay on the south side of the Peristil, overlooking the sea. Originally the palace’s south facade rose directly from the water – the seafront promenade was added later.