Istria has been a hub of civilisation for centuries and this beautiful peninsula offers a lot more than rich history. The area is a dramatic one, draping alongside the Adriatic it is filled with forests, possesses a fantastic coastline and is situated between the mountains and the sea.
It’s also easy to access, only an hour from Trieste and two and a half by ferry from Venice. It’s also on the Slovenian border, so a trip to Ljubljana in Slovenia is also easily possible.
Historically the area is also quite an abstruse one and throughout the centuries it has been invaded, owned and influenced by everyone from the French to the Romans. For the modern tourist hoping to visit, there should also be much delight that Istria wasn’t touched by the civil war in the most part. And though the area’s tourist industry understandably collapsed in the 1990s, Istria has been restyled and is a quality destination, rather than one that offers merely a low cost package malaise.
Where to Stay
If you wish to stay in Istria, then you’ll be able to delight in the range of fantastic options available. The range of influences means that there are all sorts of fantastic styles within the region. In fact, there are numerous fabulous Tuscan style villas available to rent in the region for those who want a touch of the simple life. Alternatively, wonderful hotel groups such as Maistra Hotels offer glorious accommodation in a range of areas within Istria. These luxurious and award winning destinations offer a plush stay and should certainly considered.
Nowhere in Istria is more than half an hour from the coast and though the beaches tend to be of the pebbled variety, many hotels have built bathing platforms for tourists.
Croatia’s coast is also one with plenty of interesting features and Limski Kanal near Rovinj is a fjord situated miles away from those you perceive only to exist in Scandinavia. The fjord is renowned for the clams and oysters caught in the area and there are a couple of restaurants with glorious views that utilise the local food stuffs to create wonderful food.
Istria’s food as a whole is fantastic and the area is well known across the globe for its food. The Italian influence is very apparent in the region and pasta dishes are ten a penny. The area is also renowned for its truffles and even has a festival during the autumn. Venison stew, known as srnetina is very common and is served with truffles, while seafood is also eaten throughout Istria – particularly on the coast.
Croatian wine is also becoming increasingly well received and though the area has been a wine producer for over 2000 years, it’s only recently its regaining recognition – ironic as it looks like a bunch of grapes.
In fact, there are a number of wine routes available for motorists that have been recently organised by the Istrian tourist board.
Istria is not as well known for its islands as other regions, however though there are only a few – they generally are of high quality. The 15 Brijuni islands are recalled in history as the holiday hideaway for President Tito. The archipelago is now known as a designated national park and home to all sorts of flora and fauna and even has a safari park.
Istria is a fantastic part of Croatia and Europe and you’d be well advised visiting the area if you get the opportunity this summer or for that matter any summer.