History and culture

Being a magical oasis of inspiration and rich history, Istria mesmerizes travelers from all corners of the globe. The rich historical culture of the Istrian peninsula contains buildings from all historical periods, and some of them being world-renowned monuments.

Pula is the largest city in Istria, as well as its cultural and economic center, with a longstanding tradition of viticulture, shipbuilding, tourism, and fishing. A historical site that is an absolute must when visiting Istria is world-famous amphitheater in Pula.

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It is the largest and best-preserved ancient monument in Croatia. In terms of size, it is the sixth-largest Roman amphitheater in the world, and the only one with all three architectural rows completely preserved. Three thousand years ago, gladiator battles were held in the Arena. Nowadays, most summer concerts are performed at this same venue. During the whole year, the Arena attracts world-famous musicians and other artists such as: Eros RamazzottiNorah JonesZucchero, Elton JohnSting, Tom Jones, Andrea Bocelli, Anastacia, Maksim Mrvica and many others.

The city of Pula abounds in other ancient monuments such as the Forum – Pula's city square dating back to ancient times and the Middle Ages, the oldest preserved city gate – Hercules' Gate, the Golden Gate, the Arche of Sergii and others.

The most romantic place in the Mediterranean is located on the beautiful Istrian coast, close to Lim Channel! The city of Rovinj is the destination for all those craving the romantic atmosphere of by-gone times. The old part with city gates and ramparts is worth exploring, among other things, due to its narrow alleys, relaxed ambiance and numerous local artists. 

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The panorama of Rovinj is unimaginable without the tall belfry of the church of St. Euphemia, with a sacred statue on top that looks like it stands guard high above the rooftops, stairs, pines, and seagulls, consorting only with the clouds and stars. The bell tower was modeled on St. Mark's Square in Venice.

Poreč is also well-known, especially for its nightlife and numerous fun and entertainment activities. Poreč basilica is one of the most important cultural and historical monuments on Croatian soil, and its importance on a global scale was recognized by UNESCO, including it on its World Cultural Heritage List in 1997.

The complex of Euphrasius, due to its architectural complexity and gradual development through various historical periods, has remained an inexhaustible source of historical knowledge and a challenge to researchers and historians from different parts of the world.

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Just half an hour away from Labin is the smallest town in the world – Hum.

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It is also famous for its origin. It is said that it was created when giants were building towns in the Mirna River valley, building Hum from the remaining stones. This town impresses visitors with its folk tales and customs, as well as the look of the town itself within its walls.

A 7-kilometer-long Glagolitic walkway stretches up to the town, representing the Glagolitic development of Istria.

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In the very heart of Istria is located the town Pazin, where the attention is captured by the largest and best preserved medieval fortress in Istria - Pazin Castle and Pazin Cave.

The center of the eastern part of Istria is the famous town of Labin, which combines a wealth of architecture and cultural and historical monuments with numerous art studios. Walking the streets of the city is truly a special experience for everyone and a great way to spend a day with family. There are, of course, visits to the City Museum with a model of a mine unique in this part of Europe and the memorial collection of Matija Vlačić Ilirik.