Where Croatia meets the Adriatic, this heart shaped peninsula just to the South of Italy offers delights of rolling hills with beautiful hilltop villages and secluded spots are also plentiful along the coast. With a sprinkle of historical charm it’s a little slice of heaven.
Hum is officially the smallest town in the world. It is situated to the South east of Buzet, home to 12th century frescoes and the centre of old Slavic and Glagolithic script.
The most famous and important monument in the area. Once the home of epic Gladiator fights it’s now the setting for summer performances - the Film Festival, Opera Season, Equestrian Festival and concerts.
Malvasia Wine Festival
Usually held in June on Porec’s waterfront, this is a real celebration of Istria’s fine wines. 3 days of over 40 wine makers at the ready to attend your taste buds. Sit back and enjoy live music
while sipping on Istria’s finest.
Fishing boat picnic
The perfect way to enjoy your lunch. Set sail on a real fishing boat with a panoramic view of the coast. Enjoy the magical sea and a swim followed by a freshly prepared fish picnic.
Becky Lee says
“Self-styled “Europe as it used to be”, Croatia is great for families who love to experience emerald-clear seas, vibrant culture and superb scenery. Istria feels undoubtedly Italian with places, names and language resonant of Venice.”
A third of the way down Istria's handsome coastline, projecting like a jewel-encrusted finger into the glistening, turquoise Adriatic Sea, Porec is a perfectly symmetrical peninsula complete with `ready-made' natural harbour, protected by St Nicholas island. It's a tiny city yet steeped in history, whose neatly planned latticework of shiny, cobbled streets could certainly tell a story or two from the last 2,000 years. Today, Porec (Por-etch) is famed for its ranking as Croatia's Number One sophisticated resort, whose two bays (Blue Lagoon and Green Lagoon) just south of the `old town' have much to offer the discerning holidaymaker. Charming, relaxed, orderly and clean, the warm, gentle breeze filled with pine tree scent - small wonder so many visitors are more than content to spend lazy days picking through the 'hidden gem' curio shops, pausing only for a supreme ice cream, or a tall, refreshing drink at one of the numerous, pretty pavement konobas. Our beautiful Istrian parc, Bi Village, is located in Fazana near Pula, on the Northern tip of this stunning country, where the unspoilt Croatian coastline meets the Uãka mountains.
What to eat and drink in Istria
Being so close to Italy and touched by both Austrian and Hungarian influences down the centuries, Istrian kitchens are well used to serving up menus with a distinctly 'foreign' flavour, but with their very own delicious twist. Hence, you'll find a choice of pasta (fuzi, njoki, pljukanci and pasutice) smothered in chicken, boskarin (ox) or wild game sugo (sauce). In Porec, such dishes are traditionally seasoned with fresh herbs, wine vinegar and olive oil. There's the mainstay of the Istrian household too, manestra, which is a thick soup, filled with vegetables and cured meats. Such meats, needless to say, include the regional specialities prsut (similar to prosciutto) and ombolo (boneless pork loin). Many Porec eateries will be delighted to cook local favourite fritaja - a wonderful omelette bursting with wild asparagus, which grows here in abundance. With 6000 kms of coastline and over 1000 islands making up Croatia (only 50 populated) seafood is always on the menu so try the scampi, prstaci (shellfish) and Dalmatian Brodet, a tasty stew made with mixed fish and served with rice. Fish lovers will doubtless be attracted to the dried codfish and baked scallops, gilthead seabream, sardines, grooper, seabass, steam-cooked mussels and more, all of which go down well with Porec's famous hearth-baked potatoes (pod cripnjom). Fancy a drink? Wine wise, go for the Itstrian wines Malvasia and Teran. Don't let a glass of local brandy pass you by, rich in berry fruit, fig and rosemary tones. Those with a sweet tooth won't want to leave the table without having tried the supa either- a novel blend of red wine, fried bread, olive oil and sugar, proudly presented in an earthenware jug.
What to see and do in Region Name
For a town so `bijou' in stature, there's much to see, absorb and lock into the memory. The Romans have left their mark, needless to say, the main street in the old town (Decumanus) is only the start. There's the Marafor (Roman square), site of the rectangular forum, plus a pair of majestic temples (Great and Neptune). Built much later is the Romanesque House, the lofty Parliament Buildings and, of course, the stunning 6th Century Euphrasian Basilica - a cluster of architectural treasures which together enjoy UNESCO `significant global monument' status. Well worth climbing up to the steeple to admire the Porec panorama, having first had your breath taken away by the dazzling mosaics inside. For awe-inspiring sights of the natural kind, a trip to the Baredine Caves (6km), filled with stalagmites and cool, subterranean air, makes for a refreshing day out all round. Similarly, you could let the sea breeze rip through your hair on the short boat trip over to Sveti Nikola (St Nicholas island), or hop aboard the Tourist Train, which bobs in and out of the pine trees. If you're lucky, you might well catch the Croatia Open Tennis tournament at Umag (40km), or net a bargain on Porec market.