Right along the coast of Istria, the largest peninsula in Croatia, there are small towns and cities: Umag, Porec, Rovinj, Medulin and many other small coastal places. This zone is popularly known as „Plava Istra“ (Blue Istria). The town of Porec is ideal for an active vacation with more than 70 different sports activities both at sea and on land. Medulin is a small place and is often the destination of young people who like to have a good time and enjoy live music and dancing. Umag carries the title of being a sports centre due to the tennis matches and ATP tournament it hosts. The peninsula of Rovinj and Crveni otok (island) which is in front of Rovinj offers organized excursions due to the beautiful coves and beaches. Beautiful pebble beaches for playing, swimming and relaxing await you in Rabac. The 3000 year-old town of Pula is marked by its cultural-historic value and one must point out the Pula Coliseum, an amphitheatre which was built to hold gladiator games, as well as many ruins and monuments dating back to Roman times.
- Geographic position: Istra
- Climate: mild Mediterranean
- Average summer temperature: 26° C
- Average winter temperature: 10-12° C
We have already written a lot about Istrian cuisine, so we can remind you to try delicacies of Istrian cuisine such as gnocchi and "fuži" with many sauces based on meat or vegetables.
Istrian cuisine in not based on meat alone. There are also fish and shell specialties, which are especially tasty with fine Istrian wines.
You will find all this in restaurants in and around Poreč. Search for advice from local residents or restaurant personnel.to top
There are many opportunities for typically summer activities in Poreč and surrounding areas, since this whole region has plenty facilities for an active holiday.
Thus, you can find many tennis courts, many of which are in Umag where a famous tennis tournament takes place. For those who prefer water sports there are several diving clubs and possibilities to rent sailing boats.to top
Fun and night life
Poreč is an interesting place all year long. Many classical music concerts, recitals and other cultural events are held in Euphrasios basilica. In the Green Lagoon there are summer masked festivities, and in the Lapidarium of regional museum you can listen to jazz music concerts, there is a street festival held in Poreč... there is always something to do.
In the evening you can go to one of the local discotheques or some of the cafés where you can continue partying until the small hours of the morning.to top
How to get there?
- By car:
- Poreč Zagreb 243 km
- Poreč-Ljubljana 151 km
- Poreč-Rijeka 92 km
- By plane: www.croatiaairlines.hr (air port in Puli)
- By bus: www.akz.hr
- By train: www.hznet.hr (to Rijeka)
- Local and international ferry line: www.jadrolinija.hr
BeachesBlue Istria is the favorite choice of all those who love an active holiday, however should you want to relax on the beach there are plenty of places where you can have privacy and be lazy. In Rabac, long, pebble beaches await you where you can enjoy swimming and tanning. Should you head towards Rovinj, go swimming on Crveni otok (island) where you will find many hidden coves. A small boat goes back and forth frequently and it will take you right to the island. Pula also has several beaches, the most beautiful of which are at Stoja and Verudeli, where the beaches are mostly pebble beaches while the beaches surrounding Porec are mainly concrete terraces of hotel complexes. to top
What to see?
Euphrasios basilica is the most important cultural monument of Poreč. It is a complex of sacral buildings dating from the 5th century. The original church was extended in the 6th century. The basilica was built under Byzantine Empire, under the patronage of bishop Euphrasios. This unique building was ornamented with beautiful, unique mosaics. From 1997 UNESCO protects Euphrasios basilica as a world heritage site.
The church of St. Euphemia
Be sure to visit the church of St. Euphemia, a baroque church which is the best known and largest monument in town. The church is dedicated to Christian martyr Euphemia. There are numerous legends regarding St. Euphemia and one of them says that her sarcophagus swam to the coast of Rovinj. The sarcophagus originates from the 3rd century and it was not finished. Very little is know of the character of St. Euphemia except that her bones are buried in the sarcophagus which lies in the church. The holiday of St. Euphemia is celebrated on September 16th which is one of the largest holidays in Rovinj.
The Arena in Pula
It is one of the symbols of Pula, a common theme on post cards and an unavoidable stop of every visit to Pula. The arena was built in the 1st century and it served for gladiator fights, a spectacle for those days. In the Middle Ages Arena served as a place for knight tournaments and fairs and today it is used for cultural events. In the space below the arena there is an exhibition "Olive and wine growing in antique Istria".
Lim canal is situated on the western part of Istria and it is an example of a sunken canyon valley. The canal is situated between Mediterranean and Sub Mediterranean zone and presents a natural phenomenon. In the Lim canal you can find endemic plants like dog cabbage. Beautiful emerald green color of sea that cuts into the coast is very attractive. On the trip to Lim canal we recommend trying sea specialties – the choice is very big.
Funtana got its name after springs of clear and drinkable water that springs right next to the sea shore. Since not too long ago population of inland Istria used these springs since they never run dry. These springs gave water for the Roman villa in Zelena Laguna erected in the 2nd century. If you come to Funtana we suggest visiting Valkanela, a sculpture park by Dušan Džamonja where the sculptures are exhibited in their natural surroundings. There is also a small galery in the village hosting exhibitions - a good reason to visit it. If you stay on St. Bernard's festivity, who is the patron saint of the village, you will be able to enjoy authentic music and feel the atmosphere of this little friendly place.to top
Where to go on a trip?
Brijuni islands have been inhabited already in the time of Roman and Byzantine Empires. Remains of luxurious Roman villas and buildings as well as decorative mosaics witness of the appeal of the archipelago.
Most important are the remains of a Roman summer residence in Verige bay. Temples of Neptune and Venus were built within that complex. Today on the island of Veli Brijun there are around 600 indigenous types of plants, mostly Mediterranean, and in the northern part of Veli Brijun there is a safari park where dears, zebras, ostriges, giraffes and other animals live freely.
Golf lovers can enjoy playing in such beautiful surroundings. It is a unique experience to bicycle through Brijuni; the bicycles are available in the Park.
Istria inland will greet you with its rich agrotourism offer and untouched nature. Motovun is a small town in Istria with a typical Istrian landscape, wine roads and palaces right in the city itself. Motovun becomes more and more popular each year due to the Film Festival that fills the streets and town squares with film lovers and those who love culture. Buzet is an authentic Istrian town, which was settled during prehistoric times and is referred to as the town of truffles.
Everybody knows that Venice is considered to be one of the most romantic towns on the planet. This fact is not surprising since its bridges, splendid Renaissance palaces and the square of St. Marco as a sort of center, inspired writers and poets throughout history. Get to know Venice by riding a gondola along the Canal Grande and see the Bridge of Sighs from which those sentenced to death said goodbye to the sun forever or have a cup of coffee on St. Marco square. If you come in the winter, forget about the everyday life and become what you choose during a large carnival. Venice has always been a synonym of splendor, and in the 15th century it was a center of world trade and the largest port in the world.
National Park Plitvice Lakes are situated some 200 km from the coast. Sixteen beautiful Plitvice Lakes, crystal clear and turquoise, are situated one beneath the other in forested mountain area. High waterfalls are created when water decants from the higher lakes into lower lakes, which leaves the visitors breathless. Combination of continental and coastal climate results in pleasantly warm summers and snow rich winters, lush green springs and colourful autumns that have been attracting visitors for many years. Plitvice Lakes is a destination you can visit all year long; each visit will feel like the first.
Postojnska cave (Slovenia)
This whole area is exceptionally beautiful. There are underground water flows and caves; climate is especially mild and vegetation is lush. What is especially interesting in this area are caves, the biggest one being Postojnska Jama. It stretches over almost 20 kilometers of underground passages and hallways. Already 20 milion visitors witnessed its unusual beauty. If you sit on an electrical train that will take you through the entire Postojnska Jama, you will discover the world of stalactites and stalagmites shaped by limestone and water for a long number of years. In Postojnska Jama it is possible to see the olm, which is a pink lizard-like amphibian that lives in these caves and in the karst area.to top