Istria and Split
Architect and historian Francesco da Mosto embarks on a journey to cross the Mediterranean sea. Francesco and the crew of the Black Swan hit the open sea and head down the Croatian coast. The hard life of a working sailor is creating some problems for our doughty presenter, but he is learning the ropes as best he can. His first challenge is to scale the heights of the main mast to hang the Venetian flag aloft. In spite of his best attempt to hide his fear, it's a terrifying ordeal.
Next stop is Pula and the extraordinary amphitheatre, where fights to the death were regular Roman entertainment, as well as the Temple of Augustus and the great Arch of the Sergians. Nearby, Francesco goes in search of the extraordinary fresco of the Dance of Death in the little village of Beram. But here he has every traveller's nightmare - how do you find the villager who holds the key to the church?
Next up is a stopover at the isolated lighthouse of Porer which has saved many a Venetian ship navigating these treacherous waters. And then to the beautiful city of Split where the astonishing palace of Diocletian - the oldest inhabited palace in the world. Only it is not lived in by any one rich or Royal - after Diocletian moved on it became home to the biggest collection of squatters a palace has ever seen. And now it is still packed to the rafters with people and their ramshackle conversions with some architectural oddities to show for it.
On the coast of Split the trip ends with Francesco and the crew playing the oldest ball game of the region - the weird and wonderful game of Picigin - a cross between tennis and football, played in the sea. Francesco tries to understand the rules but it's all Croatian to him.