The Istrian Peninsula - Adriatic Sea - CROATIA
Istria (or Istra) is a small green and fertile triangular peninsula that juts out into the northern Adriatic sea. VILLA KLARICI is inland northern Istria near Motovun (which is on UNESCO Tentative list) across the Adriatic Sea from Venice. Approx 10 miles south of the Slovenian border.
Jane Horrocks loves Istria 'from medieval beauty to perfect pizza' .... 'while the Italian influences in Istria are clear, we discovered a beautiful and unspoilt region that very much has its own identity'..... 'once you leave the coast and drive inland that you realise why Istria is often dubbed ‘the new Tuscany’. We were stunned by the endless vistas of lush green valleys terraced with vineyards, and the distant hills topped with unbelievably picturesque villages and towns'
'We had a wonderful time. ... the highlights of the week were going to 'Stancia Špin' in Tar for the wine, Cheese and olive oil tasting ....
PARENZANA TRAIN RIDES, wine & olive oil tastings etc
Tour of Croatia - Stage 4 Pula to Umag Sat 24 April 2015 Cycle Race
Express - 10 Things You Must Do in Istria - Medieval ruins, gastronomic delicacies and crystal clear sea: Discover Istria ...
Fun or adults and children alike.
Telegraph - Walking in the hills of Istria Tim Jepson '.. meadows dotted with asphodel and bee orchids ... ... we sat, post-walk, under ancient stone towers drinking biska, Istria’s ubiquitous myrtle liqueur, as nightingales sang and bees buzzed among the roses and philadelphus... .... Motovun, when it loomed into view, looked like an Italian hill town, but more so. I’ve never seen a more impressive position. In Tuscany, it would be heaving. But we had the single cobbled street and ancient ramparts almost to ourselves, ditto the pretty main square, where we drank crisp local wines and ate local ham (none better, even in Italy) under the shade of chestnut trees...'
Telegraph - Croatia 2014 Holidays Guide - 'Inland Istria is a haze of undulating vineyards and romantic mediaeval towns, such as Motovun and Groznjan'... 'Rovinj with its Venetian style architecture ..'
Huffington Post 'Inspired by Istria - Visiting Croatia Wine Country' '.. possibly even more astonishing to many first-timers in Istria is the high quality of the local wine, particularly Malvasia Istriana, a white wine made in both a fresh, fruity version and an aged style, and Teran, a rich, earthy red...'
'On a recent afternoon, I found myself having lunch on a shaded patio about 20 feet from the banks of a placid river that empties out into the Adriatic Sea. The restaurant, Martin Pescador ....'
Independent on-line 'Traveller's Guide Istria' 'The hilltop villages, and ancient ports of Croatia's northern peninsula, buzz with the sound of summer festivals and the flavours of gastronomic delights, says Mick Webb ... The Istrian peninsula dangles like a heart-shaped pendant from the northern end of Croatia's Adriatic coastline. Small (you can drive from one end to another in just over an hour) and self-contained, it can claim three of Croatia's most attractive coastal towns in Pula, Rovinj and Porec. Behind the beaches, though, the hilly, wooded interior ....'
Telegraph on-line 'Croatia for Beginners' Jane Foster 'Often forgotten, but well worth a detour from the coast, inland Istria is a haze of undulating vineyards and romantic medieval hill towns, such as Motovun (tz-motovun.hr) and Groznjan (tz-groznjan.hr), as well as the Mirna Valley, a top hunting ground for the regional delicacy, truffles. The Slow Food movement has a firm following in Istria, and many Italians drive over two borders specifically to eat here.'
Huffington Post - Istria, Seafood, Wine & Olive Oil - Lauren Razavi's Review
Natura Tartufi - Family-Run Truffle Producers. We wish them the best with their new truffle concept. Taste and buy local truffles and truffle products from their new premises in Srnegla, Buzet. Ask our manager about it.
SHERMAN'S TRAVEL "The Top 10 Off-the-Path Wine Regions for 2012". An ancient tradition, Istrian winemaking ...
NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC BEST TRAVEL TRIPS 2012 Romantic Hills of Istria Croatia
LONELY PLANET 2011 ranks Istria 2nd among Top 10 to visit
LONELY PLANET 'Istria - The Heart of Croatia' Gastronomy, History, Hilltop Towns,'Captivating Motovun' ...........
Times Online Istria: Food Garden of E Europe
Click for pictures of Our Favourite Local Dishes
ISTRIA GOURMET WEBSITE
WINE AND OLIVE OIL
'Wine and Olive Oil Roads' have been set up in Istria and you can explore the countryside whilst visiting the signposted vineyards and olive oil presses.
Hill top Towns and Villages Motovun, Oprtalj, Buzet, Groznjan, Zavrsje, Buje, to name a few, are beautiful local places of interest.
LOCAL BUZET CITY WEBSITE
There are many Tourist Information offices in Istria where they speak good English and are very helpful, the nearest being in Buzet old town. There are banks and ATMs and a Post Office (yellow signs) in Buzet, below the old town.
ISTRIA HERITAGE Croatia National Tourist Board Website
Local Istrian Restaurants - Truffles aplenty
ISTRIA TRUFFLE (TARTUFI) RESTAURANTS
Our romantic holiday villa is in the heart of Istria truffle (tartufi) country, where there are organised truffle gathering walks in the forests below Motovun. An annual Truffle Fair takes place in Livade, in the valley visible from the villa. Truffles are proudly served in local restaurants, along with locally produced dried ham 'prsut', local pasta and meat dishes, often garnished with grated truffles. The standard is generally very high. The villa's rural location means that you need to drive to restaurants. However, you don't need to go very far.
PRIZE WINNING TRUFFLE RESTAURANTS in-house sommeliers
- Zigante Restaurant in nearby Livade - a 10 min drive
- Toklarija Restaurant in Sovinjsko Polje – 15 mins
FAMILY-OWNED RESTAURANTS AND ‘KONOBAS’
- Santa Terra in Sovinjak is 8 min drive - garden with beautiful view, for lunch
- Konoba Dolina in Gradinje - 10 min drive
- Vrh Restaurant - 5 min drive
- Konoba Volte in Kozari is at least 15 min
- Pizzeria Ježić in Buzet is approx 15 min drive
Nearer the Adriatic coast, which is a 30 minute drive, restaurants such as
- 'Konoba Cok' in Novigrad
offer delicious fresh fish and shellfish. Order a carafe or bottle of locally produced wine to complement your meal. Local beer (pivo) and pizza is good here too.
You will find more restaurant details and personal recommendations in the villa itself.
PLACES OF INTEREST AND THINGS TO DO
UNESCO Site Basilica of St Euphrasius At nearby coastal Porec you can visit this ancient site and its beautiful gold mosaics.
Roman Arena in Pula. Pula has many ancient Roman buildings, the most famous being the Roman Amphitheatre or 'Arena'.
Motovun Film Festival takes place in July every year.
Hydrofoil across the Adriatic to Venice. We suggest you depart from Porec and it is best to book in advance. We recommend booking VL Comfort Lounge.
Istarske Toplice ISTRIAN SPA approx 4 miles from Villa Klarici.
Marina at Rovinj Have coffee and icecream in the sun and 'people-watch' at this most beautiful Venetian town on the W coast.
Visit Palud the Bird Sanctuary near Rovinj
Istria Travel and Destination Management Truffle Hunting Tours, Wine Tours, Tastings of local honey, olive oil, lavender etc. Tours of Hum, Visit to Observatory at Visnjan, off road bike tours. www.istrianatravel.hr
There are no shops near Villa Klarici and you will need to pick up your groceries when you are out and about, visiting nearby towns. There are many mini-marts in the surrounding towns, such as Livade and Motovun, and supermarkets in larger towns. The nearest modern supermarket is PLODINE in Buzet (named 'City of Truffles'). This is approximately 12 miles from Villa Klarici, so should you enter Croatia at the border crossing of Pozane-Socerga, you can pop in to this supermarket on your way to the villa, where, conveniently, there is an ATM. A new PLODINE has also opened on the road between Motovun and Pazin on the roundabout, which is good if you are making your way to the villa from Pula direction, and one is now open in Rovinj . Fruit/vegetable and fish markets are good value, and the local Istrian people couldn't be more friendly. There are good produce markets in Rovinj and Pula.
Marija Berković, Croatian champion in horseriding in 2008 (endurance category), runs a ranch where you can go horseriding. There are also other animals to be seen at her ranch. See Horseriding on Buzet website
Paragliding in Buzet
The hill at Raspdalica, 15min from Buzet centre is ideal for PARAGLIDING and a popular site. See website tici.com
Local Active Pursuits
Istria by Bike Trekking Tennis Golf Horseback Riding
Diving Fishing Hunting Windsurfing Free Climbing
Paragliding Hang Gliding Caving Sports Activities
Hiking Trails in Istria
Information about Hiking Trails is shown on Buzet website
Swimming in the Adriatic
There are some lovely spots where you can swim in the sea, such as those around Novigrad, amongst many. The sea itself is clear and very clean. The beaches are not sandy in Istria, but rocky, and often have small purpose-built sunbathing platforms on the beaches.
Free Wi Fi INTERNET Access in BUZET CITY CENTRE
Wi Fi INTERNET Access in BUZET CITY CENTRE
Although we have WiFi at the house, free WiFi Internet access is now available when you are out in Buzet Centre. If you have any questions, please enquire at the new Tourist Information Office up in Buzet old town 'Stari Grad', which is normally open from 8am to 3pm.