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September 24, 2017 - Third cycling day - 

Vodice to Krka National Park to Split

Our last cycling/walking combo day with a visit to Krka National Park mid-day

then lunch in the park before a nice long climb out of the valley.

We ended the day in Split where we will spend two nights.

                   

ABOVE LEFT - Waterfall in Krka National Park. This park sprawls over 42 square miles

ABOVE MIDDLE - Scenery on our ride around Krka National Park

ABOVE RIGHT - Petra and Kristina on a downhill turnout

                   

ABOVE LEFT - Judith enjoying one of the day's long climbs

ABOVE MIDDLE - Kristina and Sue on a bridge across the Krka River

ABOVE RIGHT - Kristi, Sue and Judith entering the lush valley (after a

great descent from the top of the canyon) of Krka National Park

                   

ABOVE LEFT - Bob and Tony enjoying the shade of the valley

ABOVE MIDDLE - Ducks enjoying the Krka River

ABOVE RIGHT - The Krka River spreads out and splits into many fingers

cut deep into the parched limestone, with shimmering blue waters and forested walls.

                   

ABOVE LEFT and MIDDLE - It's a water paradise!

ABOVE MIDDLE - The water of the Krka River was channeled in past times

to run grist mills for grinding grains and now to provide hydroelectric power.

ABOVE RIGHT - We walked along several miles of paths

and wooden walks across and around the river.

                   

ABOVE LEFT - Limestone canyon walls above the river

ABOVE MIDDLE - Is this a climbing wall?

ABOVE RIGHT - In Krka National Park

                   

ABOVE LEFT - Lots of waterfalls

ABOVE MIDDLE - Lunch was in the Krka Park Valley at a small restaurant that serves

(to meat eaters) homemade prosciutto along with great local cheese and fresh tomatoes.

Every meal in Croatia seems to start with homemade rakija -

today's was cherry rakija and quite good!

ABOVE RIGHT - On the road again after lunch

                   

ABOVE LEFT - Looking down at a beautiful lake on our ride

ABOVE MIDDLE - Overlooking Visovac Monastery on an island

in the middle of one of the lakes formed from the Krka River

ABOVE RIGHT - Our destination for the night was the city of Split, Croatia's second most

popular (with tourists) city with lots of history - back all the way to the Roman Empire.

It has some of the best Roman ruins outside of Italy. In the 4th century AD, the Roman

Emperor Diocletian (245-313) retired in his native Dalmatia.

He built a huge palace here, much of which remains today as the nucleus of modern-day Split.

This picture is taken in the square (Peristil) that was the centerpiece of Diocletian's Palace.

                   

ABOVE LEFT - Facing the harbour, Diocletianís Palace is one of the most imposing

Roman ruins in existence and where youíll spend most of your time while in Split.

Donít expect a palace though, nor a museum Ė this is the city's living heart,

its labyrinthine streets packed with people, bars, shops and restaurants. Built as a

military fortress, imperial residence and fortified town, the palace measures 215m

from north to south and 180m east to west, altogether covering 38,700 sq metres.

ABOVE MIDDLE - Venetian style 200 foot tall bell tower above the Cathedral of St. Domnius

(Katedrala Sv. Duje). This structure was added to the Cathedral in the 13th-16th centuries.

ABOVE RIGHT - Diocletianís Palace

                   

ABOVE LEFT - Ceiling in Diocletian's Palace

ABOVE MIDDLE and RIGHT - Interior of the Cathedral in Diocletian's Palace. This is the oldest - and likely

the smallest - building used as a Cathedral anywhere in Christendom. It originally was

Diocletian's mausoleum and his tomb was in the center. The only remaining pieces of decor from

those days are the granite columns and a relief circling the base of the dome (about 50 ft up).

                   

ABOVE LEFT and MIDDLE - Splitís octagonal cathedral is one of the best-preserved

ancient Roman buildings standing today. It was built as a mausoleum for Diocletian,

the last famous persecutor of the Christians, who was interred here in 311 AD.

The Christians got the last laugh, destroying the emperor's sarcophagus and

converting his tomb into a church in the 5th century, dedicated to one of his victims.

ABOVE RIGHT - Bell tower of the cathedral of St. Domnius as seen from within the vestibule.

The vestibule was the grand entry to Diocletian's living quarters. The hole in the ceiling

was originally capped with a dome and the ceiling was covered with mosaics and frescoes.

                   

ABOVE LEFT and MIDDLE - More of the Roman ruins in Diocletian's Palace

ABOVE RIGHT - Dinner in Diocletian's Palace

         

ABOVE - Our vegetarian meal in Split