Matejuška: An Open-Air Hangout in Split

Total Croatia News

Matejuška is a small fisherman’s port just west of Riva. A pleasant walk along Matejuška provides the best vantage point of Split’s seafaring culture as locals from the Veli Varoš neighborhood prepare their catch along the long pier in the morning and catch up for a chat on the benches. At the end of the pier is a wind compass sculpture showing the winds of the region. In the last century, this port was a shipyard. 

Matejuška has developed a cult status amongst youth and is probably the biggest open-air hangout in Dalmatia for almost all subcultures of society; hipsters, punk rockers, rock n’ rollers, alternatives, as well as main streamers. The youngsters like to find a spot on the wall and enjoy a cold beer bought in a nearby kiosk or a bottle of cheap local wine brought from home. Matejuška provides a completely laid back vibe where friends enjoy a chat, listen to a tune on their phone and just take in the city skyline as they observe the varying crowds walk by. 

Matejuška attracts the crowds from May onwards when the weather warms and has been known to host quite a few free concerts throughout the summer season. Street musicians and practicing klapa groups also come here to keep the vibe going. 

There are a few insider tips if you want to blend in with the Matejuška crowds. Firstly, some groups have become accustomed to their regular spot and other groups are aware of that so they leave the spots free for when the ‘regulars’ come. Another thing to observe is how the further down the pier you walk, the more alternative the crowd becomes. Also, there are three ‘bottle collectors’ who reign over Matejuška and they are quick to snatch your empty bottles so they can exchange them for cash. The most popular guy is known as Božo Transporter who is quick and has developed a whisk technique in collecting bottles. The other two are a couple of elderly ladies who sometimes snatch your unfinished drink when they think you are too slow in providing empty bottles. I reckon these ladies are probably the only in their age group who get to go out every Friday and Saturday night until 4am, hanging out with youth J…perhaps it keeps them young. 

So if you want to mingle with Split youth in a laid back atmosphere on a zero budget, head to a wall along Matejuška.


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