CROATIA is a Central European country situated on the Adriatic coast and covering an area of 56.538 km2 and with a population of more than 4.7 million. The capital of Croatia is Zagreb. With a more rapid development of tourism which started in the '50s, Croatia was soon able to compete with other tourist countries of the Mediterranean region.
ISTRIA is the largest tourist region in Croatia with an area of 2.820 km2. The seat of the government administration is the city of Pazin. Istria has a population of more than 200.000 inhabitants. The symbol of the peninsula, which is also shown in the Istrian coat of arms, is the Istrian goat. Istria realizes one half of the total over 50 mil. overnights in Croatia. The peninsula lies on the Adriatic, but it stretches far into the inland reaching the Central Europe. Therefore, it is the nearest warm sea for this part of Europe. The region enjoys Mediterranean climate with mild winters and long, hot summers. Characteristically for the region, the flora includes almost endless lines of evergreen forests of tall pine, cypress, hornbeam, and elm trees. In summer, the air temperature is about 30°C, while the temperature of the sea is about 25°C. The region has an average number of more than 2.000 hours of sunshine per year. The bright blue sky over Istria may last for several months (from April to October).
BLUE ISTRIA is called the vibrant, active and gently sloping west Istrian coast between Savudrija and Medulin. With its picturesque small towns, lined up like pearls on a string, the coast of Blue Istria attracts primarily with its diversity. There are various bathing possibilities and all kinds of water sports, but also music, art and culture, as well as historical monuments of Venetian influence reaching back to the Roman period. Refreshments and entertainment facilities of any kind, but also quiet coves and calm places a little off the usual travel routes. The most important cities of Blue Istria are: Savudrija, Umag, Novigrad, Tar, Porec, Funtana, Vrsar, Rovinj, Pula, Medulin and Lim Fjord.
GREEN ISTRIA is intended to be the central Istrian inland, often called also “Istrian Tuscany”. Instead of consistently growing tourism trends in the Adriatic Region in the last years, it has preserved one thing above all: it’s authenticity. Here, within a radius of 20 kilometers around Motovun, a small town built by the Venetians between the 13th and 17th Century, you can experience the original Istria. Here the clocks tick a little slower, here people can still live of agriculture and here you will find peace and relaxation from everyday stress. The Istrian hinterland is always dressed in lush greenery, even during hot summer periods, and therefore provides ideal conditions for growing high quality foods. In spring the woods are full of aromatic wild asparagus, followed by pale and tasty spring chanterelles. Summer is the ideal time for putting black truffles on the menu. Autumn crowns the year with porcini mushrooms and the king of them all: Tuber Magnatum Pico (white truffle that may be only found in Istria and Piemonte). The most important cities of Green Istria are: Buje, Brtonigla, Motovun, Groznjan, Oprtalj, Buzet, Gracisce, Hum, Pazin, Zminj, Labin, Plomin, Bale, Vodnjan and Svetvincenat.
KVARNER is the name given to east Istrian coast, once a traditional stronghold for numerous summer visitors from Austria-Hungary. It was also a very well known summer destination of the Emperor Franz Josef and his wife Elizabeth, as well as many other Austro-Hungarian highly ranked state and military officials. And this somewhat aristocratic, slightly dusty and especially cozy atmosphere of former times may be seen and felt even today, in the whole Kvarner Bay. The coastline here is much steeper and more impressive than on the west Istrian coast, and in some places a little reminiscent of the French Riviera. It offers wonderful views on the surrounding islands, old chestnut groves and laurel woods, Ucka Natural Park beauties and splendid Art Nouveau villas, making them shine in a completely new light. The east Istrian coast between Opatija and Medulin is ideal for swimming, offers all kinds of water sports and it is a real El Dorado for gourmets, leisure seekers, nature lovers, mountain bikers and hikers. Famous for its seaside resorts, the region has developed a very good sense for individual travellers nowadays. The Kvarner scampi and Lovran chestnuts are two local culinary specialties that you cannot miss, if you visit this area. The most important cities of Kvarner Bay are: Opatija, Lovran, Icici, Moscenicka Draga, Labin and Rabac.