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Split Gay Travel

Where is the Split gay beach? Are there gay bars in Split? Find out here in the Split gay travel guide with wolfyy.

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The Gay Travel Experience: Split, Croatia

Split is where you will find the highest number of gay tourists in Croatia! Split is one of the most gay-friendly Croatian cities along with Dubrovnik and Zagreb. Croatia as a whole is not so comfortable with homosexuality when compared with the rest of Europe, however there are droves of gay tourists visiting every year.

gay sailing split Croatia

A high density of international tourists dissipates any anti-LGBT sentiment that you may find. Many bars and sightseeing locations are predominantly tourists, so you should be quite comfortable. Make sure to read the Croatia gay safety section below for some more advice.

gay sailing split Croatia
split where to stay

Gay travel in Croatia usually starts or ends in Split, as many travelers make their way to or from Dubrovnik and visit the islands on their journey. Croatian cities are increasingly branding themselves as a top gay holiday location, so Split is one of the new staple gay travel hotspots!

split where to stay

If you are debating whether to visit Split as opposed to Dubrovnik, you should know that Split has more of a chill vibe while Dubrovnik has a rowdier nightlife scene. Also, the gay beach in Split is more prominent than what you will find in Dubrovnik.

Check out the Dubrovnik Gay Travel Guide for more info and see which is best for you.

Book a Croatia Gay Sailing Trip!

Sailing the Croatian Islands with a group of gay friends was one of the most memorable trips of my entire life! Are you interested in doing the same? I can help you organize your first trip for gay sailing in Croatia or gay sailing in Greece!
gay tours Croatia
gay tours Croatia
gay cruise Croatia gay sailing
If you’re interested in seeing what the trip was like for me, head to my instagram, @laffaloui and check out my highlights section. There are a bunch of shots and videos from the my gay sailing trip!
gay cruise Croatia gay sailing

Split Experiences for the Gay Traveler

Take a stroll through the wondrous narrow alleys in the Split Old City. Make your way around the labyrinth of streets, exploring every little nook. Paths that you may think are dead-ends often lead to beautiful little plazas with cute bars and restaurants.

Old City Split
Gay travel Split experiences
Old City Split

Break away from the crowds to the desolate parts of the Old City and you’ll find a place to capture amazing travel photos. It’s fun to explore day or night!

Split Gay Beach

The gay beach in Split is near Kasjuni Beach, east of the Split Old City. Head to Kasjuni Beach and then start walking west. You will find increasing numbers of gay men as you progress, and then a completely nude beach further we

split gay beaches
split gay beaches
nude beach in split

Local gay Croatians are likely found at Kasjuni Beach, as they are out of the public eye. You may notice they can be shy or stand-offish. This is only because they may be nervous to interact with other gay men.

Remember, local gay Croatians are not always open or comfortable with their homosexuality because of the societal pressure. Say hello!

nude beach in split

Also, the beaches in this area are made of round stones, so make sure to bring water shoes if you dont like walking on cobble shores. The ocean temperature is refreshing too. It’s not too warm and not too cool.

Split Gay Travel: Best Restaurants

Pizzeria Bokamorra is a stunning, romantic and tasty restaurant. Their cocktail menu is spectacular and you can also head here just for drinks. Pizzeria Bokamorra was one of few places in Croatia where I found custom cocktails.
best pizzeria split Croatia

After eating seafood for a few days, Terminal F has the delicious American food you’ll be craving. The burgers at Terminal F were definitely a highlight. Whatever they are putting in there is more than satiating.

Terminal F Split
best pizzeria split Croatia
Terminal F Split

Bobis take-away cafés are all over Split. They are most convenient for food on the go and not too expensive. If you order pizza, make sure to get it properly warmed. They usually hand you lukewarm or cold slices and I am not sure why. Again, Bobis is really just for on-the-go snacks. I wouldn’t have a proper meal here.

What is Croatian Food Like?

Local food in Croatia is primarily fish and other seafood. The Croatian culture also borrows significantly from the Italians. Pizzerias are the second most common type of restaurant you will find in Croatia.

Gay travel Split experiences

Most high-end restaurants will have a “catch of the day.” The menu will include a price per kilogram of a specific type of fish, or scallops for example.

Gay Split: Where to Stay

Staying directly in the Old City is a great opportunity if you have the budget to do so. The alleyways and historic streets are enchanting. As you may imagine, booking Split hotels or Airbnb rentals that are in these cute passageways are more expensive. In my opinion, they will be worth it.
split Old City

You can tell which areas are the true “Old City” by checking Google Maps for the regions that are shaded beige. Google Maps doesn’t even show most of the restaurants, bars and hotels connected to a street in this area! It just goes to show how maze-like the Split Old City feels.

split waterfront
split Old City
split waterfront

For cheaper accommodations in Split, stay just outside Old City. The area is perfectly walkable and safe. For a part of my trip, I stayed about a 10-minute walk north of the waterfront. Airbnb’s will be much cheaper in these surrounding areas.

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Split Gay Bars

Ghetto Bar is the unofficial Split gay bar. Ghetto Bar attracts a mixed crowd, but it is known to be a gay hangout. Remember that Split has no official gay bars, but given that the city is an international gay travel destination, you are likely to find some other gay travelers around.

gay bar split
gay bar split
where to go out Split

As mentioned earlier, homosexual public displays of affection are not always tolerated well. Many locals support homosexuality, but then again, many do not. Use your judgement, especially while people are out drinking at bars.

In my opinion, Split is not a late-night party destination. There are many tucked-away bars in the area, but they are not large in size. They are also not rowdy late into the night. I did not find any large dance clubs as I did in Dubrovnik.
dubrovnik nightlife
If you’re down to party hard in Croatia, check out Hvar, one of the most popular Croatian Islands.
gay sailing holidays croatia
nudist beach Split

One of my favorite places to grab drinks in Split is Fluid Cocktails. It’s a cozy bar with seating outside in a narrow alleyway. The vibe is precious and the staff is friendly. You can find Fluid Cocktails right in the Old City.

Is Split Safe for Gay Travelers?

Gay travelers in Split should exercise some caution for a number of reasons. Although Croatia is part of the European Union and is a popular gay travel destination, there is still a formidable anti-LGBT sentiment among some locals.

local market Split croatia
local market Split croatia
market split

One of the two homophobic scenarios I witnessed in Croatia was in Split. A gay couple that was part of my group of sailing friends was showing a small amount of affection in a restaurant called Roof 68. 

A waitress came over to them and explained they could not kiss each other in the establishment. This surprised everyone, and they left shortly after. It was disheartening to experience.

Split nightlife
In my opinion, this incident should not deter you from visiting Split or anywhere else in Croatia. Isolated incidents like this can happen anywhere. Many locals do in fact support homosexuality and equal rights for the LGBT community.
I tell you this story only to illustrate why gay travelers in Croatia should still make sure they are in a safe environment before displaying any affection.

Split Gay Travel Tips

Looking for cheap snacks? Head to Stari Pazar just outside the Old City. Stari Pazar is an outdoor market that sells mostly fruit and dried goods. I grabbed some apples and berries for fuel to explore the city!

gay group travel Croatia

I needed to wash some clothes in Split, and I found the perfect spot. Do a Google Map search for “self-service laundry Primus Verum” for a laundromat open every day. It’s quite convenient if you need to do laundry at early or late hours, or on a Sunday!

gay group travel Croatia
gay sailboat trip
The Split bus station is usually very busy and can be a bit confusing at first. The easiest thing to do upon arrival is to show your ticket to the information window attendant. They will know exactly what platform the bus is going to arrive on. Trust them; they do this every day so they know your route.

Also, always listen to the announcements in case of a platform change. It happens from time to time.
gay sailboat trip
The Split bus station is usually very busy and can be a bit confusing at first. The easiest thing to do upon arrival is to show your ticket to the information window attendant. They will know exactly what platform the bus is going to arrive on. Trust them; they do this every day so they know your route.

Also, always listen to the announcements in case of a platform change. It happens from time to time.

Is Split Expensive?

Croatia in general is no longer cheap! Split, Dubrovnik and the Croatian islands are all so popular with international tourists, that prices are have inflated tremendously. Prices at most restaurants rival those of New York City or Paris. Inexpensive food is hard to come by. For the cheapest eats, street-side pizza shops are best.

market split

Bus from Split to Dubrovnik: Do You Need Your Passport?

Busses that travel between Split and Dubrovnik must cross through Bosnia and Herzegovina. Bosnia and Herzegovina occupies a small stretch of coastline, and so there will be two border checkpoints during the journey.

Split Bus terminal
split gay travel
Split Bus terminal

At the border, you likely will not need to exit the bus. An officer will board the bus and visually check your passport. They probably will not stamp it since they know the bus is bound for another Croatian city. My passport wasn’t stamped.

Gay Life in Croatia

Croatia for locals is not exactly easy. Most local Croatians keep their sexuality hidden from the public eye out of fear of discrimination. They do not usually express their identity openly. Hate speech has been on the rise against LGBT individuals and Serbs prior to 2017, according to reports compiled that year on the issue.

split gay travel
Croatia by law defends all citizens against discrimination based on sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression. The country allows gays, lesbians and bisexual individuals to serve in the military. Changing legal gender is also legal.
Croatia gay beaches
split gay travel
A major downfall is that the Croatian constitution bans same-sex marriage. The country revised the constitution to define marriage as union solely between a man and woman.  A 2017 Pew Research Study found that more than 60% of Croatians oppose same-sex marriage.
local market dubrovnik
Gay rights gained more of a foothold in 2014, when Croatia passed the Life Partnership Act. The Life Partnership Act allows gay couples to receive the same legal benefits as heterosexual couples for just about everything except adoption rights.
On a positive note, a 2016 ILGA poll found that 75% of Croatians would have no issue with a LGBT neighbor. 10% of people responded they would be very uncomfortable with a LGBT neighbor.
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Next, check out wolfyy’s Dubrovnik Gay Travel Guide and Pomena Gay Travel Guide.
Need more ideas for gay vacations? Explore wolfyy’s full list of gay travel destinations.
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