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Location of Maya
Great Things to Do Near Maya
dating from the fifteenth century, are found in the church of sv Marije (St Mary) at Skrijinah, near Beram, just north east of Pazin.
Visit the Zavicajni Muzej Rovinja (Rovinj Town Museum)
housed in an impressive baroque palace dating from the 17th century in Rovinj. A permanent exhibition of paintings by old masters dating from the 15th to 19th centuries is found here together with a contemporary collection of Croatian sculptures and paintings. (Tel. 052 816 720, open 0900-1200 & 1900-2200, except Monday).
Gracisce and Pican
Take a drive on road number 64, specifically the stretch between the villages of Gracisce and Pican. From these two vantage points, absorb the unique panorama of the valley from which MountUcka, the highest peak in Istria, rises (to 1,396 metres).
Gracisce is a charming hilltop village offering magnificent views.
Wander around its largely deserted lanes and look for the Romanesque gates set in the town walls and, just inside, its loggia dating from 1549. Nearby is the church of Sveta Marija, a square structure with portico and belltower and frescoed walls inside. Notable amongst the other churches is that of Sveta Eufemija with its 14th century crucifix, though largely rebuilt in the 1500's. Look for the Masonic headstones with their 'secret' symbols some, intriguingly, with British names.
The little walled town of Pican
was a bishop's see from the 5th to the 18th century and boasts some lovely medieval buildings.
Try and catch a performance at Pula's amphitheatre.
Artists such as Sting, Jamiroquai and James Brown have staged concerts here in recent years and it is the venue for the annual Pula Film Festival usually held in late July. What better venue?
Also in Pula, walk up to the old star-shaped fort - Kastel,
the central point of a spider's web of narrow streets, steep paths and alleys in the heart of the city. This vantage point affords great views out to sea, over the amphitheatre and across to the old Roman theatre.
Take a trip back in time - visit the Riviera Hotel in Pula.
Built in 1908 in ornate Belle Époque style, this was a 5 star hotel, a grand symbol of Austro-Hungarian rule. Here mingled officers, bohemians, Viennese ladies, artists and salesmen. It was the place to be seen. Sadly, although its waterfront façade maintains an imposing presence, the hotel is not what it was.
Head down to nearby Svetvincenat
and take time to stroll around this delightful town with its pretty main square, 15th century church of the Anunciation and 13th century castle, Palazzo Grimani, with its magnificent lawned keep. There are a couple of bars with terraces here, so stop for a cool beer and watch the world go by.
Etnografski Muzej Istre/Muzej Grada Pazina (Pazin's Ethnographic and Town Museums).
Both housed in the medieval castle there is an ethnographic collection representing traditional Istrian life as well as a display of archaeological finds from the area. (Tel. 052 622 220, open 1000-1800).
Park Skulptura Dusan Dzamonje (Dusan Dzamonje's Sculpture Park).
The sculpture park of this world famous sculptor is located beside the artist's home and studio at Valkanela, just north of Vrsar, affording a superb view of the bay. The contrast of the vivid green grass setting against a blue sea and sky backdrop within which stand these extraordinary sculptures should not be missed. (Open 0900-1100 and 1700-2000, closed Monday).
Mini Croatia, Rovinj.
See Croatia in miniature: the state borders, mountains, rivers, lakes, islands, railways and important cities. (Open 0800-2000).
Take a wander around Dvigrad,
situated between Mrgani and Kanfanar. You've almost certainly already passed it in the car, but spend an hour or so here wandering around this fortified moody ruin said to have been established by Uksok pirates.
Take a trip to the Brijuni Islands.
Once Tito's holiday home and the meeting place for the international jet set it is now the only national park in Istria. Principal of the 14 islands, Veliki Brijuni, is the one to visit because of the diversity of its interests: see deer and peacocks roam wild in beautiful natural parkland; Roman ruins; a safari park; beaches and traces of dinosaur footprints! You need to allow at least half a day for this excursion which involves taking a ferry from Fazana. (Information and booking tel. 052 525 807).
Fazana itself is a colourful little seaside town
its quayside backed with pastel-coloured Italianate buildings and many waterfront cafes, bars and restaurants. If you stop for a snack you must try pilchards, emblematic of the town. Try them cold in a marinade of oil, vinegar, water, parsley, rosemary and pepper - the Istrian way!
In 24 tanks of varying sizes, discover the fish and other live organisms of the Adriatic Sea. (Open 0900-2200).
Indulge yourself in Rovinj.
The spacious quaysides here are the perfect venue to sit and unwind at one of the many terraced ice cream parlours or cafeterias. Sip a machiato and enjoy some people watching!
Get a Ticket to Ride on the Yellow Submarine!
The Yellow Submarine is a boat, purpose-built for underwater sightseeing. Departures from Porec take you on a 90 minute cruise through clear Adriatic waters to view the sea life and underwater flora from a specially constructed viewing deck below the water line.Tel. 098 229 573.
An evening of jazz at the Lapidarium.
Also in Porec, on Wednesday nights from the end of June to the end of August, why not sample an evening of jazz at the Lapidarium. Many different local and international performers play during the season.
Take it all off!
Croatia has been a popular naturist destination for a hundred years or so. There are a number of nudist beaches - try the one called Rt Montauro, just south of Rovinj. From the old town follow the coastline south coming into Zlatni Rt Park and then follow the coast south for another 1 km. It's a small pebble beach between tall rocks and some shade from nearby pines. No facilities, so bring all you need.
|Sveti Lovrec||5 mins|