Why Pula should be your next city break

Recently The ‘Rough Guide’ published a great article on Pula, so we are posting it here for you:

So you’ve circled Dubrovnik’s city walls and wandered the ancient alleys of medieval Split? Then the laidback and cosmopolitan city of Pula, home to some of the most impressive Roman ruins outside Italy, should be next on your list.

While some Croatian destinations along the glittering Adriatic coast can sag beneath the weight of the tourist multitudes in summer, Pula retains a refreshing sense of authenticity – its compact historic centre is as picturesque as any in Croatia, yet the giant cranes of its shipyard, the only profitable one in the country, are an ever-present reminder that this is a working town.

It’s also an ideal hub from which to explore the hinterland of Istria, an enticing region of Venetian-built towns, olive groves and fragrant pine forests.

What should I see?

Pula’s highlight is undoubtedly its first-century Roman amphitheatre, whose imposing outer walls are the best preserved after Rome’s Colosseum. Booking up an evening performance in the arena is the best way to connect to the ancients – it provides the spectacular setting for summertime events from gladiator fights to the glitzy centrepiece of Pula’s annual calendar, the two-week film festival.

Elsewhere, Pula’s languid old-town streets reveal a fascinating historical jumble, from Byzantine chapels to weatherbeaten Venetian townhouses and grand Hapsburg palaces. The most graceful Roman remnant stands proudly in a corner of the bustling Forum, Pula’s main square for over two thousand years: fronted by tall, slender Corinthian columns, the Temple of Augustus is one of several ancient sites providing the backdrop for the summertime Spectacvla Antiqva, a slightly surreal, toga-clad celebration of Roman street theatre and food.

Where can I hit the beach?

Once you’ve had your fill of classical antiquity, pick up a bike and pedal out to the secluded, pine-forested Verudela peninsula, 5km south of town, where a sequence of fine white-pebble beaches fringes the aquamarine Adriatic waters. Verudela is home to several big hotels but development is discreetly tucked away from the shore and the coves are as popular with townsfolk as tourists.

The so-called Holy Rock at the peninsula’s western tip is a dreamy vantage point from which to take in the sunset, with dolphins often glimpsed just offshore.

Where should I go for a day-trip?

To find a stretch of beach all to yourself, jump on a ferry from the pretty nearby village of Fažana to Veli Brijun, main island of the idyllic Brijuni archipelago. Protected as a national park, and ringed by pristine coastline and blissfully clear waters, the islands will forever be associated with Yugoslavia’s erstwhile president, Maršal Tito.

A cult icon of the Cold War who – unique among Eastern European dictators – retained a popular appeal that endures to this day, Tito’s tireless diplomatic machinations are recalled in the oddly obsequious Tito on Brijuni photo exhibition, by Veli Brijun’s ferry dock.  Pictured entertaining foreign dignitaries and film stars from Fidel Castro to Sophia Loren at his Brijuni base, the dapper, handsome, ageing statesman cuts a genial, avuncular figure: more late Bond-era Roger Moore than Cold War villain.

Elsewhere on the island there are Roman ruins, cycling routes and forest trails to explore, and you can even visit the remaining denizens of Tito’s private zoo.

What’s on the menu?

With a strong Venetian influence and an abundance of local ingredients, eating out around Pula is a joy. The region’s truffles are justly famous, and so rich in flavour that they’re best served simply grated over pasta.

Istria was recently declared the top olive oil-producing region in the world. A revelation if you’re used to supermarket brands, the genuine article unleashes a warm, spicy kick at the back of the throat; long-living locals swear by a spoonful a day.

Local chefs, meanwhile, proudly proclaim Istrian waters as home to the densest concentration of seafood in Croatia; typical dishes include brodet sa palentom (fish stew with polenta), stuffed squid and crni rižoto (risotto with cuttlefish ink).

Good central restaurant choices include the Dolce Vita-themed Bistro Alighieri and the breezy vine-covered terrace at the ever-popular Pizzeria Jupiter, though for the best Istrian cuisine you’ll need to head out into the suburbs and nearby villages.

In a gorgeous position overlooking the bobbing yachts of Pula’s marina en route to Verudela, upmarket Ribarska Koliba is famed for its seafood, while Fažana’s standout choice is the simple, budget-friendly Stara Konoba, right on the harbour-front; don’t miss their njoki s tartufima (homemade gnocchi with truffle).

What about the local drink?

Highly drinkable, Istrian wines run the range from crisp, floral Malvazija whites to the deep, rich reds of the Teran (Terrano) grape. For a tasting session pull up a stool at the welcoming Brajda wine bar and work your way through the forty-strong menu. A short way off the tourist drag, smoky Skandal Express is a grungier, more alternative drinking hole, though no less inviting.

Craft beer aficionados should make for the congenial beer garden of Beer Club, 2km south of town, where Croatian microbrews on offer will normally include several from Istrian brewer San Servolo; look out for their powerful, hoppy APA.

Finally, where should I stay?

Pula’s smartest hotels and apartments are clustered on the Verudela peninsula. With a more intimate feel than most, and handily close to the lovely Havajka (Hawaiian) beach, top choice is the recently renovated Park Plaza Arena.

Homely Scaletta and arty, backpacker-oriented Pipistrelo are good central options, while literary types should make for the newly opened Boutique Hostel Joyce, so called as it occupies the language school where the struggling young Irish author once taught English; it’s a supreme spot from which to survey the remarkably well-preserved Arch of the Sergians, Pula’s most ancient Roman monument.

Norwegian fly to Pula from London Gatwick twice weekly between March and October. Ed stayed at the Park Plaza Arena hotel (doubles from £91). Explore more of Croatia with the Rough Guide to Croatia

Read more: http://www.roughguides.com/article/why-pula-should-be-your-next-croatian-city-break/#ixzz4DBDdAn9a

Stay at our wonderful villas:

http://istrawiz.com/istria-croatia-for-rent/villas/

Modern Villa B2

Photos and Description of this 5 bedroom holiday villa in Vrsar – Funtana area – Villa B2

 

Luxurious Villa 5 Bedrooms, 5 Bathrooms, Large Swimming Pool, Grill

Being part of concept BR Villas in small village Radetici, Villa B2 offers comfort and privacy amidst glorious natural beauty. Industrial modern design, along with rustic details and natural textures, designer signed furniture and materials, create a unique ambience and a distinctive brand, led by designer Boris Ruzic.

 

The house is architecturally designed on a hill in a way that each houseroom enjoys a splendid view over the gently rolling Istrian countryside all the way to the beautiful Adriatic Sea.

 

The villa is surrounded by stonewalls, a covered lounge zone for a pleasant stay in the hot summer days, and an interesting line of swimming pool with waterfall source. It is truly a genuine piece of rustic paradise surrounded by old cottages and nature.

Villa with pool Vira

Villa Vira is a newly built, modernly furnished villa situated in the small village Banki near Baderna in the central Istria, distant 14 km from the Porec and sea. The house was built and furnished in 2014 and represents a new generation of Istrian villas that successfully combines tradition with a touch of modern design, fully air-conditioned and equipped with attractive furniture. At the guests disposal stays an outdoor pool of 32 m2, covered terrace within the old stone walls with outdoor kitchen and dining area, fenced garden with maintained lawn of approximately 250 m2 and parking for 2 cars.

 

Villa for 8-9 persons with total living area of 180 m2 located on two fully air-conditioned floors. At the ground floor there is a spacious living area with a kitchen, large dining table, sofa, a smaller play room for and two shower/toilets. The first floor consists of two separated parts which are accessible from separate stairs where are in total four air-conditioned double rooms with satellite TV, one with a double bed and a private terrace, one with a double bed and private bath/toilet, one with double bed and one with twin beds, one single bed, shower/toilet in the corridor.

WGP Volleyball to be held in Istria

POREC MAJOR SERIES | 2 – 7 JUNE 2015

If you like Beach Volleyball, don’t miss the Porec Major Series taking place early June, in Istria.

The FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour Porec Major will be the first of four Major Series events on the FIVB Beach Volleyball World Tour 2015 calendar, which this year features a record purse of US$9.3 million in a season that extends from late April to mid-December.

TheFutureOfBeachVolleyballToday

If you need accommodation for June, we can offer some serious discounts for our holiday villa or apartment rentals

Contact us on info@istrawiz.com for more info

Book a holiday villa in Croatia

Book a Holiday Villa with Istrawiz.com

With many holiday sites around choosing the right becomes really difficult. One is overwhelmed by the choices of holiday villas, apartments, properties to rent and various prices and online payment methods. Sometimes, finding a telephone line and talking to a real person becomes impossible.

That’s why Istrawiz.com is different. You can talk to us via email, skype or telephone. We are proud to be  a small family run business that specialised in one thing only : Istria. This fantastic region in Croatia is stunning and we truly believe it therefore  want to give you the best possible advice before you travel.

At Istrawiz.com we are proud to be be able to bridge the cultures between Istria in Croatia and the English speaking part of the world! We offer holiday villa rentals, holiday apartment rentals at the same price as the other sites but with the added value of knowing what we are talking about!

We use safe paypal payment method and at any time of your booking you can talk to us and rest assured that a real person will chat to you.

Rent a holiday villa with istrawiz.com and get the best price and  local information now!

email us on: info@istrawiz.com, marina@istrawiz.com

+44 20 3239 2530

Skype: marina1979

 

 

10 reasons to visit Istria this winter

Here are ten things to do in Istria this winter, as recommended by the locals:

 

 

 

 

 

  1. Carnivals in Istria - Most Istrian towns have a big costume promenade around mid February. Do not miss!
  2.  You like it sweet? Must visit Pazin for the Honey Days, 27-28 February.
  3. Istrian Rivietra From 28 february – 8 March This March in Umag, the Istrian Riviera, will be gathering 120 players from 12 countries. The matches will be played  in the Umag Tennis Academy Centre in Umag, with a 10 thousand Dollar prize fund.
  4. Oleum olivarum in Krasica 7-8 March Like Olive oil? This is a must visit to this small picturesque town in Nort West Istria.
  5. For all the meat lovers! Sausage days 28.02-01.03 Sv.Petar u Sumi.
  6.  Trophy Umag 04.03.2015 A one-day race on the international calendar of the World Cycling Organization UCI(Union Cycliste International), ranked as 1.2 and open for all cyclists in categories Men Elite and U-23, that is for UCI Kontinental teams, national teams, regional teams and clubs. It will be held for the third time on Wednesday, 4 March 2015.
  7.  Gran Prix Porec – International cycling race. A one-day race on the international calendar of the World Cycling Organization UCI(Union Cycliste International), open for all cyclists in categories Men Elite and U-23, that is for UCI Kontinental teams, national teams, regional teams and clubs.
  8. Seashells days 16.02-23.03.2015 You’ll have  a chance to taste  sea morsels at the Days of seashells organised by the tourist boards of Umag, Novigrad, Brtonigla and Buje on the territory of northwestern Istria.
  9. Valentine’s day Treat for your partner? Visit Brtonigla for this delicious combo of wine and chocolates!
  10. Brtonigla 21.02.2015 Turn of the Alpe Adria trekking Cup Why not taking part and burning some of those calories in this race while also discovering some of through Istrian hidden treasures of untouched nature and landscapes.

 

Read more here on what to do in Istria. Rent your holiday villas with Istrawiz

 

 

 

Holiday villa Angela e Giovanni Istria

Casa Angela e Giovanni is an old istrian stone house located on the edge of the village Zudetici above the river Mirna valley with panoramic view on the picturesque towns Motovun and Groznjan. The house is situated on its own semmi enclosed property of 300 m2, surrounded with green fields and trees, where the guests have on their disposal an outdoor swimming pool of 24 m2, terrace with sun beds with a table and chairs, parking for 3 cars. Casa Angela e Giovanni was completely renovated in 2014 and equipped with a beautiful rustical furniture.

 

Holiday house for 6-9 persons with a total living area of ​​244 m2 situated on three floors. On the ground floor there is a tavern/dinnig room with fireplace, large dining table and one shower/toilet. On the first floor there is a kitchen with dining area, air-conditioned living room with closed fireplace and satellite TV, a double bedroom with a double bed, one bedroom with two single beds, bath/toilet and one open room with two beds.

On the mezzanine between the first floor and the top floor there is a double bedroom with a double bed and private bath/toilet.

On the second floor (attic) is a small living room, a large air-conditioned double bedroom with a double bed and one extra sleeping couch and shower/toilet.

ATP Tennis Tournament Umag

The Summer ATP Tournament is held in Umag from the 17- 27 July 2014.  It is one of the most important sports and social events in Croatia.

Many world ranking tennis players are staying and playing in the luxurious resorts of Stella Maris Umag. One of our Luxury villas is rented out by Serena Williams!

Many tennis players have participated  in this sport and social even in the last few years:

Nikolay Davydenko, Novak Đoković, Ivan Ljubičić,Guillermo Canas, Marcelo Rios,Juan Carlos Ferrero, and many more.

There is still time to buy tickets:

Contact

Istra D.M.C.

Web: www.croatiaopen.hr

Phone: +385 52 719 125

 

Luxury villa Elena

Characterised by its unique design, this strikingly contemporary villa offers unbeatable style, functionality and boasts stunning sea views from its elevated settings in Porec. It is placed directly on the sea, the beach is just 15 meters from the Villa’s entrance.

It consists of five bedrooms all en-suite and one additional bathroom for the guests. The luxurious master suite is located on the first floor with an en-suite bathroom (including a Jacuzzi tub) where the occupants are lucky enough to wake up every morning overlooking the

breath-taking Bay.

There are 4 bedrooms on the ground floor, all with access to the main terrace creating seamless border between outdoor and indoor living. The ultra-modern design showcases quality details in a generous proportioned and beautifully presented open plan living area. The terrace is spacious, it includes a fully-equipped outdoor kitchen, barbecue, dining and sitting area, sun loungers, large swimming pool (50m²) and it is a ideal location for relaxation since it offers extra comfort and majestic sea views.

The bamboo hardwood flooring placed all around the swimming pool and the rest of the outdoor area makes the villa the very definition of modernity and stress-free liveable design.

Furthermore, there are large windows throughout the entire house in order to let in as much natural light as possible. The living room and the master bedroom are made out of a 18 meters “window wall”!

The house faces southwest which means that the sunlight stays in the living room all day long.

The vacation villa is located in the city of Poreč which is situated on the western bank of the Istrian peninsula and is a former Roman colony with sights of Romanesque architecture and beautiful Venetian gothic palaces. Its orthogonal set of streets has been completely preserved till today.

Poreč is a town of culture, tourism, sport and entertainment, it has been recognised and awarded for the beauty of its public spaces and its cleanliness many times over the years.

This region is a pearl of Croatian tourism which offers its visitors a different kind of holiday full of entertainment and events such as the well-known Motovun and Pula Film Festivals.

 

Occupants will have easy access to a full range of amenities such as tennis courts, golf course, fitness centres and other services.

A unique attraction, only a short drive away, the “Istralandia” aquapark (81 000 m2) is opening on the 1st June 2014 for the pleasure of the younger ones.

 

In addition, there is a possibility of hiring a private chef, chauffeur, massage therapist, maid, fitness trainer, personal trainer and babysitter.

We also provide one-day excursions to famous tourists destinations such as Venice, Plitvice Lakes and Brioni National Parks.

Families and friends traveling together will enjoy the beachside elegance of Villa Elena

.