Sailing holidays in Istria
…with catamaran, sailboat, motorboat, luxury yacht or gulet
Experience the aroma of truffles and exceptional wine!! 🙂
Selection of cheeses and cold dishes of Istria are specialties. The cuisine of Istria and the Kvarner regions represents a special Croatian style of cooking, a blend of inland and coastal. These regions are rich in excellent fish and seafood, most notable among them being found in the northern Adriatic: scampi (prawns), calamari and shellfish from the Limski Kanal (Fiord).
After an excellent prosciutto, and cheese and olives, many traditional wine cellars offer fish soup, fish stew, boiled prawns, black and white frutti di mare risotto, as well as other dishes typical of the central part of the Istrian peninsula – traditional wine soup, ragout (jota) similar to Italian minestrone (manistra, menestra or manestra), and also pasta and risotto dishes cooked with the famous truffles of the region – a self-sown precious mushroom species, unearthed by specially trained dogs and pigs; these fungi have the reputation of containing aphrodisiac properties. The excellent Istrian wines include Malvazija of Buje, Cabernet of Porec, Sauvignon and Merlot, as well as Teran of Buzet, Zlahtina of Vrbnik, and sparkling wines – Bakarska Vodica, etc. Fine restaurants abound in Istria and Kvarner, especially on the Opatija, Crikvenica, Rovinj and Porec littorals, as well as in the interior and on the islands.
Istria is called the “Terra Magica”. It is a true cultural arboretum whose heritage comes from the Histrians, the Celts, Romans through to the Byzantines, Slavs and Venetians and all the way to the Austro-Hungarian Empire! Wherever you start from, either from Pula and its magnificent Roman amphitheatre, Rovinj that is called the small Venice, Porec’s Euphrasius, the town of ghosts of Dvigrad, the beauty of Motovun or perhaps the artists town of Grožnjan in the interior, one thing is for sure, Istria is a region of true wonders. In addition, 15 years ago on the seabed at Bale remains of dinosaur bones were found, which were the first, and for the moment, the only to be found in the entire Mediterranean area.
Attractive sailing destinations:
Wonderful surrounding, lovely pebbly beach, pleasant climate and view of Kvarner Bay all attracted holiday-makers and travel writers as early as the mid-19th century when Rabac was just a small fishing village. Its first hotel, Hotel Quarnero was built in 1889, but in spite of all its advantages at the beginning of the 20th century Rabac could not match the more developed tourist resorts such as Pula-Pola and Poreč in the west or Opatija and Lovran in the east. Although the first larger hotel was opened as late as 1925, today Rabac is a developed tourist resort with about 15 hotels and apartment villages and several campsites. Its leading tourist companies are Riviera Adria and Maslinica.
Apart from its rich catering, sports and entertainment offer, Rabac offers numerous excursion possibilities especially to the Istrian interior with numerous agritouristic complexes.
And just above Rabac, nestling on the top of the hill at a height of 320 m above sea level lies the old mining town of Labin. Today, when the mines have been closed down, this town, where all historical sights become true historical gems, presents itself in a new guise. An increasing number of galleries, bars, studios, modern and famous multicultural center as the crossroads of the young generation, have all found their ideal location right here in Labin, which all adds to the tourist offer of Rabac.
Medulin – once a small fishing village, today is a modern tourist center. It is one of the main centers of Istrian tourism with richly indented coastline. The sea makes up three-quarters of the Medulin Riviera with rich flora and fauna which further enhances a visit to this area. Medulin is a town where you can spend a quiet and romantic but also a dynamic and meaningful holiday. The city is known for its beautiful sandy, pebble and rocky beaches, the most famous being Bijeca. Because of its rich sports infrastructure it is a favorite destination for sporting activities throughout the year, where sports fans can enjoy football, horse riding, tennis, sailing, mini golf, flying, bowling, beach volleyball, diving, the underwater world, and many other water sports. Explore the Vižules archaeological site with ruins of Roman villas and tour the old windmills by the sea. While enjoying the various offerings of Medulin, take some time to visit ancient Pula, Istrian Mummies, National Park Brijuni, National Park Plitvice Lakes, Nature Park Cape Kamenjak, Venice and many other beautiful sights on the Istrian peninsula. At one of the many festivities held during the summertime you can try some of the specialties of Medulin such as crab sald, cuttlefish risotto, Istrian prosciutto or any of the aromatic specialties made with truffles. You can enjoy yourself and relax during concerts of classical music, visit restaurants and dance on their terraces or visit one of the night clubs and entertain yourself until the morning.
Pula, a city that has existed for three thousand years, is situated in the south of the Istrian peninsula. The town has beautiful beaches spread over nearly one hundred miles of beautiful and indented coastline.
If you visit Pula, you will hear whispers about a story of mythical Argonauts, Romans, Venetians, Franks and the time of the Austrian and Hungarian Empire. The city-museum will present you with its buildings and monuments preserved from bygone times: the Arch of the Sergi, Temple of Augustus, Hercules door…
In Pula you will enjoy excellent restaurants, and on the most beautiful stage in the world, in the Arena under the stars, during the summer you can listen to some of the most famous names from the world of music.
The most renowned event is the International film festival, one of the most spectacular in Europe, which is held in the open air.
The view of the Pula region is framed by the Brijuni National Park, a gem in Istria’s natural heritage. With its fourteen islands and islets of exceptional beauty, safari park, the remains of Roman villas and forts Brijuni are a wonderful blend of nature and culture.
Brijuni, a group of islands comprising of two large and twelve smaller isles, are strung along Istria’s south western coast not far from Pula. Their surface area is barely seven km2, but together with the surrounding sea the total area of the park is 34 km2. Brijuni are renowned for its indented nature and the unspoiled Mediterranean vegetation, but the islands also boast an invaluable cultural heritage dating from the Roman and Byzantine times, which alongside with the outstanding natural beauty, has made them a popular holiday destination among the world statesmen and the aristocracy. Although not inhabited, because of the numerous tourists who are ferried over from the mainland by boat, there are people on the islands all year round. Veliki Brijun offers accommodation in three small hotels, enabling their guests to savour an atmosphere of peace while being surrounded by beautiful nature and having the tourist flurry of Pula within easy reach. The site of the first golf course in Croatia is on Brijuni. Despite the numerous visitors, the landscape has been well preserved, as proved by a large number of birds which winter on the islands.
Vrsar is a tourist town in west Istria, located 9km south of Porec. It was known as Orsera in the past. It has been inhabited since the ancient history and has been and export harbor for Istrian rock. An unusually urban village grows into a fortified medieval town during the romantic age, in which every house is owned by bishops and noblemen. The town preserved its Mediterranean atmosphere with its narrow stone streets which lead to small intimate squares. Only 3km to the north, there is the Lim canal – a fiord which was declared a nature park. The restaurants within the park offer fish prepared according to traditional recipes. Vrsar can boast with one of the most beautiful archipelagos: as far as 18 uninhabited small islands, densely overgrown with Mediterranean bushes are ideal for exploration with motor boats which can be rented in Vrsar. You can also rent sailing boats, surf boards, pedal boats and bicycles. There are a few tennis courts and playgrounds in the town, as well. Be sure to see the St. Foska church, main town gates, summer house of Porec bishops, old romantic gates from the 13th century, roman magazine and the necropolis, romantic basilica St. Mary of the Seas and countless other historical sites. Gastronomy enthusiasts can enjoy in Istrian specialties, from the famous prosciutto to asparagus and truffles, as well as fresh seafood in numerous restaurants. We recommend restaurants “Siroko”, “Delfin”, “Mali Raj”, and “Riblji Restoran”. We would like to recommend Vrsar to family vacation fans, as well as active holiday enthusiasts. The beaches offer a wide selection of additional content, as well as all the equipment you require.
Rovinj is located on the southwestern coast of the Istrian peninsula, surrounded by 22 islands and islets and it is a favorite tourist destination for many. It is believed that Rovinj was founded in the 3rd and 4th centuries and maybe even earlier since the first proof of life dates back to the 1st and 2nd centuries. The city’s role in the 16th – 19th centuries was key for its appearance today because of its prosperity. In the past few years, many new pebble beaches were created, the most popular of which are in Valta, camp Villas Rubin, camp Vešetar and the beach in Lone Bay. For those who prefer a more active stay at the beach, there are the beaches in the Škaraba Bay and Cape Rusi which are actually bathing areas located on elevated stones, with no shallow water, allowing for leaps and acrobatics into the sea. The whole coast of Rovinj is protected heritage. Its development and diversity of the underwater world make for a rich flora and fauna, while a wide range of activities offered can satisfy all types of tourists, making it an ideal destination for everyone. The city is full of cultural and historical monuments such as the old town (located on a peninsula and symbolized by narrow streets, small houses and squares), city walls and gates (the town was surrounded by walls in the 7th century and it had 7gates; only 3 remain today – St. Benedict, Portica and Holy Cross), church of St. Euphemia (dominates the center of the old town, named after the patron saint of the city and was built during the beginning of the 18th century), baptistery of the Holy Trinity (seven-corner construction and the oldest building in the city), Franciscan monastery (baroque building built at the beginning of the 18th century), castle on the island of St. Andrew (6th century Benedictine monastery and castle which, today is a hotel), Dvigrad (remains of a Medieval city, 23km from Rovinj), church of St. Agatha, church of the Holy Cross, church of St. Benedict and many others.
Novigrad, once a peaceful fishing town, over the years has become a compelling touristic destination. Although being so popular among tourists from all around the world, Novigrad has to this day kept its intimate and irresistible charm of a typical quite Mediterranean fishing town. Novigrad, nowadays a picturesque little fishing town, was built on an island near the coast.Well preserved old city walls, that date back to 13th century, represent one of the most interesting symbols of this tourist center.Novigrad – in all the colours of Istria.
Novigrad isn’t just a real architectural gem filled with astounding historical sights, rich cultural heritage and preserved natural beauty; Novigrad is also one of the top Istrian gourmet destinations where one can taste many gastronomic extravagance of the Mediterranean food. The Istrian excellent cuisine and its delights will spice up your stay and make your journey so comfortable you will for sure want to return to this charming town again. The city walls have for centuries embraced and protected Novigrad’s rich history, its culture and valuable traditions. In fact the first written reference to the city goes back to the distant 599 A.D. Novigrad was founded on the grounds of several villages that are known to have existed on this same land in the past- Neapolis in the Seventh century, then Civitas Nova in the Ninth century, and ancient Emona (Aemonia) in the 12th century. All of this states the fact that Novigrad’s background is filled with a rich and very turbulent past.
Marinas and Bases
ACI marina Umag
Marina Nautica Novigrad
Marina Červar Porat
ACI marina Rovinj
Rovinj City Port
ACI marina Pula
ACI marina Pomer
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Nautical adventure guidebook
- The Istria Inspirit project is ongoing throughout the entire peninsula from June until September and will take you through time with nine events, staged at historical sites.
- The Pulj Arena staged gladiatorial combat during the period of the Roman Empire and is now used for various cultural events, mainly concerts which attract visitors.
- The Kamenjak Cape with its numerous coves, capes, hidden corners, beaches and uninhabited islands, appears as an exotic location somewhere near the equator and is thus referred to by some as the “European Caribbean”. The cape provides favourable conditions for surfing and cycling, and also favourable conditions for experienced divers wishing to discover the magical underwater world full of shipwrecks from World War I and II.
- During your vacation, surrender to the culinary delights and taste the famous subterranean treasure of Istria: the truffle. Do not forget the home-made bread and the exquisite olive oil known as “fluid gold”. Spoil your taste buds and treat yourself to a glass of delicious Istrian wine.