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Split and Dubrovnik (and Ljubljana)

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These forums are both useful and enjoyable to read. There is so much good advice here, so I wanted to share our planned trip next April-May and pose a couple of questions.

Overview:
We (wonderful wife and I) enjoy spending a week or so in a town - apartment, grocery shopping, see attractions, hanging in plazas - getting a feel for life in that town. To complement that, we also enjoy day trips to nearby towns/attractions. We enjoy a lot of walking and are very comfortable using public transportation, and we don't like to rent a car.

Basic Plan:
Fly into Ljubljana; spend 8 nights
train to Zagreb; fly to Dubrovnik; spend 4-8 nights
bus to Split; spend 4-8 nights
fly home from Split

I'm comfortable with our plans for Ljubljana (hanging out in town; day trips to Bled, Idrija, Škofja Loka, tour to Istria, etc.

I'm in a quandary about how to split (pun intended) our time between Split and Dubrovnik...
We'd prefer an apartment near the old town areas (between Marjan Hill and palace in Split) and (between Ploce or Pile and old town in Dubrovnik)

? any thoughts on those or other areas in those two towns (Split or Dubrovnik) for a quiet stay ?

? which of those two towns might be better to spend the bulk of our time ?

? how much time (days) might be needed to see each town at a relaxed pace ?

? both towns seem to have a number and variety of good day trips, but there seems to be more from Split than from Dubrovnik - is that correct ?

? does Split have the crowd issues (cruise ships) that is associated with Dubrovnik ?

Split potential day trips: Sibenik, Trogir, Solin, Omis, Hvar, Brack, Krka, Pucisca
Dubrovnik potential day trips: Lokrum, Korkula, Mostar, tour to Montenegro (Risan, Kotor, Budva)

? what might be your favorite day trip from either of those two towns ?

Thank you
With regards
--Bruce

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