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Split Gay Travel

Where is the Split gay beach? Are there gay bars in Split? These answers, plus the best hotels & areas to stay, in wolfyy’s Split gay travel guide.

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The Gay Travel Experience: Split, Croatia

Of all Croatia’s destinations, Split is where you will find the most gay tourists! Split is one of the most gay-friendly Croatian cities along with Dubrovnik and Zagreb.

split gay travel

While Croatia as a whole is not super comfortable with homosexuality compared to the rest of Europe, that doesn’t stop droves of gay tourists from visiting every year.

split gay travel
gay sailing split Croatia

A high density of international tourists dissipates any anti-LGBT sentiment that you may find. I definitely enjoyed myself in this wonderful city. Many bars and sightseeing locations are filled with predominantly tourists, so you certainly won’t feel out of place. 

split where to stay

Gay travel in Croatia usually starts or ends in Split, as it’s an anchor point for many travelers making their way along the country’s spectacular islands. Croatian cities are increasingly branding themselves as top gay holiday destinations, and Split has without a doubt become a staple world gay travel hotspot!

gay sailing split Croatia
split where to stay
gay sailboat trip

If you are debating whether to visit Split as opposed to Dubrovnik, then I would first decide how important nightlife is to you.

While you can still find gay nightlife in Split, expect it to be a bit more relaxed.  Dubrovnik on the other hand has rowdier nightlife and spectacular clubs.

Gay Split: Hotels & Where to Stay

Split Old Town hotels are the most popular, where you’ll stay along beautifully enchanting alleyways and historic streets.

Old Town Split

Staying along the bustling waterfront Promenade, called the Riva, is another fantastic choice within the Old Town. These options are usually more expensive, but worth it in my opinion.

Cornaro Hotel

Cornaro Hotel is one of the most highly rated LGBT friendly Split hotels in the Old Town. They have beautiful, modern rooms with windows that open up, allowing you to peer down to the streets below.

Cornaro hotel Split
Split gay friendly hotel
Cornaro hotel Split

They’re also quite popular for their rooftop bar that offers some pretty stunning views both day and night. And don’t miss their indoor jacuzzi lounge, surrounded by fun purple lights.

Split gay friendly hotel

Riva Luxury Rooms

Riva Luxury Rooms is another stunningly elegant gay-friendly hotel option. They’re also rather affordable for accommodations within the Old Town. I love how their rooms embrace the character of the Old Town with exposed stone walls that beautifully contrast with rich teal walls.

split gay friendly guest house
Riva Luxury Rooms guest house
split gay friendly guest house

Technically a guest house, Riva offers exceptionally large rooms compared to many other Split accommodations. Even their studio rooms are spacious. Highly rated and often complimented for cleanliness, you can’t pass up a stay here!

Riva Luxury Rooms guest house

Laura Lux Suites

Laura Lux Suites is perfect for couples. They are a modern LGBT-friendly guest house. Their deluxe double room includes a romantic jacuzzi tub on-suite, plus a private terrace. I love how much light these rooms get, too.

Split gay friendly hotel for couples
Split gay friendly hotel for couples
jacuzzi suite Laura Lux

The Laura Lux guest house is just to the west of Split’s Old Town. This area is still fantastic, even while walking around at night. Plenty of nearby restaurants and shops will keep you happily entertained.

jacuzzi suite Laura Lux

Split Vacation Rentals

Browsing vacation apartment rentals within the Old Town walls, you’ll find some stunning options. They’re often more affordable than traditional hotels nearby.

Apartment rentals just outside the Old Town are better for those seeking cheaper accommodations in Split. The surrounding area is perfectly walkable and safe. 

sunset in Old City
sunset in Old City
Old Town Split

For a part of my trip, I stayed about a 10-minute walk north of the waterfront in a pretty cheap rental and had a great experience. Friends of mine stayed in the neighborhoods west of Split’s Old Town, which is also a vibrant area.

As a general tip, you can tell which areas are the true “Old Town” by checking Google Maps for the regions that are shaded beige.

In fact, Google Maps doesn’t even show most of the restaurants, bars or hotels connected to a street in this area! It just goes to show how maze-like the Split Old Town feels.

Boutique hotels in Split Old Town

More Split Hotels & Hostels

Piazza Heritage Hotel – Exceptionally well-rated boutique hotel in Old Split with traditional decor.

Heritage Hotel 19 – Chic, modern waterfront hotel with an on-site bar and restaurant known for friendly and helpful staff.

Piazza Heritage Hotel Split
Boutique hotels in Split Old Town
Piazza Heritage Hotel Split

Hostel Dvor – Modern, minimalist hostel just outside the Old Town offering both mixed dorm beds and private rooms.

Split Hostel Fiesta Siesta – Top-rated Australian-run hostel with a fun social atmosphere.

Browse more hotels in Split on Booking.com.

Split Experiences for the Gay Traveler

Book a Croatia Gay Sailing Trip

Sailing the Croatian Islands with a group of gay friends was definitely one of the most memorable trips of my entire life! If you’re interested in joining my next trip or booking your own, I can help you organize your first adventure gay sailing in Croatia or Greece.

Flexible bookings are available and deposits are risk-free! Learn about gay sailing holidays in Croatia and Greece.

gay men sailing
gay men sailing
gay cruise Croatia gay sailing

Explore Split's Old Town

Take a stroll through the wondrous narrow alleys in the Split Old Town. 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.

Some of the Game of Thrones scenes were filmed here in Split. Fans of the series love the local Game of Thrones filming location tours!

tourists walking promenade

Break away from the tourist crowds and head to the hidden desolate corners of the Old Town. In some of these alleyways and hidden plazas, you’ll get some great opportunities to capture amazing photos.

Split Gay Beach: The Best Gay Beach in Croatia

The gay beach in Split is near Kasjuni Beach, west of the Split Old Town. It’s one of the best gay beaches in Croatia. It’s clean, tranquil, and private.

split gay beach

To get there, 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 even further west. 

Wear some of your best sexy swimwear if you really want to attract some attention.

split gay beach
nude beach in split

Local gay Croatians are usually hanging out at Kasjuni Beach during the warmer months. They prefer this area because they can stay out of the public eye.

nude beach in split

You may notice local gay guys can be shy or even stand-offish. This is only because they may be nervous to interact with other gay men. 

Nevertheless, if you’re looking for a gay cruising spot in Split, all you have to do is wander the rocky coves past the beach area. I definitely witnessed a few encounters from afar. If you really want to catch some attention (including from nearby sailboats), wear a flashy jockstrap!

gay cruise Croatia gay sailing
Croatia gay beaches
split gay travel

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

Also, the beaches in this area are made of round stones. If you don’t like walking on cobble shores, bring a pair of lace-up water shoes, or a pair of Teva Sandals. The ocean temperature is refreshing too. It’s not too warm and not too cool.

Day Trips from Split

If you’ll be visiting Split but aren’t planning on doing any sailing, then you should definitely consider touring nearby Croatian Islands with a couple of day trips.

touring vis blue caves
day trip to Croatian national park
touring vis blue caves

Book a Blue Cave day tour from Split if you’re not planning on staying on the island of Vis. The beautiful Blue Caves are a hugely popular attraction I highly recommend.

day trip to Croatian national park

Day trips to Plitvice Lakes National Park are another incredible option. Seeing the gorgeous waterfalls, marine life, and clear-water lakes here will make you feel like you’ve been transported to another world.

Split Restaurants

Pizzeria Bokamorra is a stunning and tasty high-end restaurant. Their cocktail menu is spectacular. You can also head here just for drinks. Pizzeria Bokamorra was actually one of few places in Split where I found custom cocktails.

Pizzeria in Split

Terminal F might just satisfy a craving for delicious American/international food after eating seafood for a few days. The burgers at Terminal F were definitely the highlight. Whatever they are putting in there is magically satiating.

Terminal F restaurant
Pizzeria in Split
Terminal F restaurant

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. I am honestly still not sure why.

Again, Bobis is really just for on-the-go snacks. I wouldn’t have a formal meal here.

restaurant for Split gay travelers

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.

restaurant for Split gay travelers
split nightlife

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

Split Gay Bars

Academia Club Ghetto is the unofficial Split gay bar. Club Getto attracts a mixed crowd, but it is widely known to be the top gay hangout in the city. They often host intimate musical performances or have a live DJ.

split gay bar DJ

Remember that Split has no official gay bars, however you can still easily find other gay travelers since Split is such an international gay travel destination.

Gay travelers looking for a venue to spend an evening usually go to Club Ghetto. The vibe is dim, casual and upbeat in this unofficial Split gay bar.

Club Ghetto Academia
split gay bar DJ
lesbian couple in Split

As mentioned earlier in this guide, homosexual public displays of affection are not always tolerated well, unless of course it is clear that an establishment is an LGBT safe space.

Many locals do support homosexuality, but then again many do not. Use your judgment, especially while drinking out at traditional bars.

Club Ghetto Academia

In my opinion, Split is not much of a late-night party destination. There are many tucked-away bars in the Old Town, but they won’t provide anything too rowdy.

I didn’t find any large dance clubs as they have in Dubrovnik and Hvar. If clubbing isn’t on your agenda though, you definitely won’t have any issues enjoying yourself.

lesbian couple in Split
split nightlife

Lastly, Fluid Cocktails was one of my favorite places for cocktails in Split. It’s a cozy bar with seating outside in a narrow alleyway. The vibe is precious and the staff is quite friendly.

My friends and I were briefly chatting with a man sitting next to us, who we found out minutes later was the server! The bar is informal, yet has a great ambiance. You can find Fluid Cocktails right in the Old Town.

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Is Split Safe for Gay Travelers?

Gay travelers in Split should exercise some caution for a few 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.

dubrovnik nightlife

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.

gay sailing holidays croatia
Split gay nude beach
Split gay nude beach

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

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.

gay sailing holidays croatia
gay group travel Croatia
gay sailboat trip

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

Flights & Car Rentals

Before booking flights to Croatia, I suggest comparing airlines with Expedia or checking flights to Split on Skyscanner. Split’s Airport code is SPU. 

Auto Europe has some of the best car rental rates if you’ll need a car during your trip. You can pick up your car in Split and leave it in Dubrovnik if you’re traveling between cities.

Grab Some Cheap Snacks

Looking for cheap snacks? Head to Stari Pazar Green Market just outside the Old Town. 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!

local fruit market
local fruit market
sweets market

Consider Travel Insurance

Getting travel insurance coverage before visiting Croatia can come in extremely handy. Trip cancellation protection, lost-baggage coverage, travel delay reimbursements and medical coverage abroad are just a few reasons why you should always have some sort of insurance policy.

Travelex Insurance is one of the easiest providers to use. Their website gives you an immediate quote based on your age, trip cost and a few other factors. They then offer plans in several price tiers.

Alternatively, you can shop among the quotes from a whole bunch of different providers using a travel insurance marketplace service like Aardy.

tourists walking promenade

Need to Do Laundry?

I needed to wash some clothes in Split, and I found the perfect spot. A small little place called Self-service Laundry Primus Verum is open every day. It’s quite convenient if you need to do laundry at early or late hours, or on a Sunday! However, keep in mind there are only three washers and three dryers.

Split Bus Station Tips

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 because they do this every day so they know your route.

Split Bus terminal
tourist attraction in city center
Split Bus terminal

It’s probably best to listen to the announcements in case of a bus platform change. It happens from time to time, so it’s better to be cautious.

local market dubrovnik

Traveling between cities in Croatia is quite convenient by bus. I traveled all around the Mediterranean and other parts of Europe using FlixBus buses, which are almost always exactly on time, comfortable, civilized, and safe. They’re also incredibly cheap if you book far in advance.

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.

sweets market

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.

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

Buses 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. Hopefully, they’re quick. My journey wasn’t too bad.

local architecture
local architecture
tourists walking promenade

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.

Croatia gay beaches

I hope you’ve found this Split gay travel guide useful! Don’t forget to subscribe to wolfyy for more of the latest gay travel information & special travel invitations.

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Next, check out stunning caves in Vis, the wild nightlife in Hvar, or gorgeous lakes of Mljet National Park in Pomena.

See wolfyy’s travel resources page for discounts from trusted partner sites.

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