Weather-wise, you’ve got a sure bet for sunshine in the summer months, with temperatures reaching the low 30s in July and August. Plus, the mild winters mean you’ll be fine with a jumper on. The walled city of Dubrovnik put Croatia in the limelight, thanks to it doubling as King’s Landing in the hit HBO show Game of Thrones. But, if you want to uncover the lesser-known side of Croatia, opt for a holiday to the Istrian Riviera.
Roll out a map of Croatia, and you’ll find the Istrian Riviera right at the top – really close to Venice. History books are full of a long list of empires, including the Romans, who’ve all tried to stake a claim on this stretch of land, and it’s easy to see why it’s so popular.
If you like to explore, the Istrian Riviera’s eastern edge acts as the perfect springboard for you to visit Croatia’s islands. You can catch a ferry to Krk, Cres and Rab, which are all home to mountain ranges, and hideaway coves. Or, head over to Brijuni – this group of 14 islands, shaped like ink blots, have been declared national parks. Expect plenty of opportunities for those #nofilterneeded snaps.
The phrase ‘old meets new’ sums up the resorts of Pula and Porec perfectly. Pula’s top historical sites include the 1st-century Roman amphitheatre, and the Temple of Augustus. Plus, there’s a mixture of rocky, pebbly and shingle beaches for those looking to top up their tan. The pretty city of Porec, meanwhile, boasts the Basilica of Euphrasius, a UNESCO-listed World Heritage Site. And, in the background, the landscape’s scattered with sleepy hilltop towns and olive groves.
Nestled in between Pula and Porec is Rovinj. It’s often referred to as the Pearl of the Istrian Riviera, thanks to the impressive architecture in its Venetian old town, and its group of shingle beaches known as Lone Bay. Seek out treasures in the little artist workshops, then try some gourmet dishes in the fine dining restaurants, which are tucked away in the narrow streets. And, as the sun sets, unwind with a cocktail in one of the chic, waterfront lounge bars.
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Author: Sarah Clayton
Published: April 25, 2017
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