Home Away From Home

In a year that’s been rife with firsts, planning my first non-family vacation is one of the most exciting milestones. Graduating from college? Landing a full-time job? Living off my own paychecks? Okay, they’re all admittedly points of pride. But planning a trip myself trumps everything, because it’s all being done in the spirit of adventure, escape, and trying new things. And there are no rules: I can choose my own destination (anywhere in the world!), lodging (B&B? hostel? apartment?), and itinerary.

So I’ve taken special pride in plotting out the steps of my upcoming jaunt to Croatia, and here’s a new development in the process: just this week, I found (and booked) a perfect home base in Split. Take a look, why don’t you?

All photos via Croatian Villas.

This is the alcove that the apartment is tucked into. In early September, it’ll still be warm enough to sit outside before dinner, reading a book and sipping a cup of tea.

Inside, there’s a spiral staircase, which makes the simple layout feel special. The kitchenette may come in handy for storing breakfast food, once I inevitably OD on pastries midweek. And that stone wall visible through the window? That’s part of Diocletian’s Palace, the humming center of Split.

There’s a tiny bedroom at the top of that spiral staircase, which looks clean, spare, and tucked away.

More of the surrounding area…

…and a very inviting entryway, indeed.

I’ll be staying in Split, which is halfway up Croatia’s coast, and getting away for day trips here and there: ferrying over to sunny islands, seeing the waterfalls in Krka National Park, perhaps heading to Dubrovnik or Bosnia for a visit. But since I’ll come back each night to the same city, it sounded comforting to rent someone’s apartment and really have a home for the week. Price-wise, it was actually cheaper than staying in a small, characterless hotel room. So I’m looking forward to having a home away from home—very, very far away from home.

When you’re traveling, what do you prioritize—an exotic destination, a cozy place to sleep, car rental or train tickets (so you can see as much as possible), indulgent restaurant meals? And what parts of the equation are you happy to forgo? I love hearing what “a great vacation” means to other people.

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