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If travelling from Zagreb, alone or in couple, train is, for many reasons, definatelly the best way to get to Split. Train isn't so fast but offers comfort, possibility to stretch the legs and watching beautiful landscapes. Not of less importance, you could take some nice pics, espacially while train passing along the river of Una.
Train ticket isn't expensive but it is advisable to book in advance if travelling during high season, July or august.
Split train station isn't very busy. More people seem to use the rail lines as a pathway than a travel option. I saw parents walking their kids along the lines, but never a train. There's really only one route, and that's to Zagreb. The train line basically stops in Split. It doesn't go any further south, and it definitely doesn't go to Dubrovnik.
The locals seem to prefer the bus, but Croatian trains are rapidly modernising, so you might find it's a much more comfortable alternative. At least if you are going to Zagreb.
By train to Split
Just by the harbour there is a small dead-end railway station called "Split". Apart from some local trains to Solin etc. there are also a few connections to Zagreb. The station building is quite modern with a ticket counter and an electronic departure board but the funny thing is that there is no timetable hanging anywhere in the station. We couldn't find one inside nor outside on the platforms.
Since the long-distance bus station is just outside the train station you will find all important facilities like left-luggage, toilets, internet, snacks and drinks etc. just nearby.
Train journey from Zagreb to Split is a beautiful journey - don't miss it if you have time. From Zagreb railroad first passes through corn-growing plains, then hilly area with vineyards between Jastrebarsko and Karlovac. At Ostarije train leaves Zagreb - Rijeka railroad and it's the beginning of Lika - a beautiful mountaineous area with contrasts of mountains, small plains, rivers and lakes.
As the train approaches Knin the scars of the recent war will become more and more visible. And as you approach Split you'll be rewarded with one of the best views of Split and its surroundings as the train enters Kastela basin.
There are several daily trains, including new tilting ICN trains that run between two cities in 5,5 hours. Or if the view is not of some great importance for you, you can book one of the sleeping cars in night trains. Some night trains during the summer have special "party cars" with DJs and a bar - makes the night on tracks pass quicker.
Down by the waterfront near the Old Town on Obala kneza Domagoja, you'll find not only a bus station and ferry terminal, but also the city's main train station. Unfortunately, trains don't head south toward Dubrovnik, but there are two trains daily to Zagreb that stop in both Knin and Karlovac.
This journey is a real eye opener especially if you take the nin hour night train ,because the route takes you through the Krajina to Knin the former stronghold of the Republica Krajina Serbs.
As the light dawns you notice that every station is battered , often with holes or no roof ,there is also a guy with a lamp who stands amid the rubble as the train goes through which is very eerie in the half light.
The Krajina saw some very heavy fighting which combined with the fact that it looks like the surface of Mars anyway makes it particulary bleak ,just mountain and rocks everywhere with the odd abandoned car and ruined village.
The train then drops down towards Trogir and Split and it's like walking out of shade into the sunshine.
By trains :
3 or 4 times a day between Split & Zagreb.
6 trains a day between Sibenik & Split.
1 1/2 hours.
On Sunday, the trains would be less.
Better check the infos on other sources or the website below.
- Budget Travel
- Historical Travel
We travelled on an overnight...
We travelled on an overnight train from Zagreb - around 9 hours but comfortable if slow trains - sleep is possible. Ferries run up and down the coast from Dubrovnik to Rijeka - equally slow!! Jadrolinija ferries website. Ferries also run to the nearby islands.
Trains Are at YOur Doorstep
The train station is very convenient location and only two blocks from the Riva and Diocletian Palace area. It also is right next to where the boat dock for transport, and one block form the buses.
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