Get moving around Istria

December 20 2021 Explore the region with 5 simple yet stunning activities
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For some people the definition of rest is doing nothing, preferably in the sun. For some, it’s a constant quest for new experiences with time spent in accommodation reserved only for (a minimum amount of) sleep. What if we told you there’s a middle ground, a possibility of recharging your batteries while being both relaxed and pumped up with adrenaline. As any hedonist will tell you, the secret of a great vacation lies in striking that fine balance.


The serotonin-high five


If you still want to spend your vacation under the vine shades of your terrace, that’s perfectly fine. On vacation, as well as in life, you should do you. However, if you’re curious about what lies beyond the gates of your premium vacation home, you might want to read on. Here are some ideas on where to get your daily dose of adventure in Istria.


1. Cycle the Parenzana trail

At the beginning of 20th century, Parenzana was a 132 kilometer long railroad that connected the town of Poreč (Parenzo) with the Italian city of Trieste. Today it’s a cycling and hiking trail which passes through the picturesque Istrian countryside, across multiple bridges, viaducts, and through dozens of old railway tunnels. Thanks to poplar tree lines, olive yards and vineyards, it has a somewhat Tuscan look and feel but with an industrial twist. It’s well-marked, so you can hop on and off at multiple points along the way. This way, you can customize your route and adjust its length to your fitness level.


Enjoy the Parenzo trail, Poreč


What you’ll need

  • A mountain bike
  • a GPS track or a map



2. Hike the Seven Waterfalls Trail

The Seven Waterfalls Trail is a 14 kilometer hiking trail which starts near the city of Buzet. Its name might seem pretty self-describing but it doesn’t quite do justice to this magnificent outdoor experience. It’s an easy half-day hike that will take you to 7 waterfalls at river Mirna, the village of Kotli and multiple other natural sights. However, the level of water depends on the season. If you want to see the waterfalls in their full power along with the lush flora of the trail, we recommend hiking the trail in spring or fall. If you want to swim in the travertine pools along the route - be sure to visit it in the summer.


Beautifull waterfalls, Istria, Croatia


What you’ll need

  • Hiking shoes or trail sneakers and a backpack with refreshments
  • a swimsuit (in the summer)
  • hiking poles (optional)  



3. Go for a scenic bike ride around Brijuni National Park

The Brijuni Islands are located in the south of the Istrian peninsula and they make an ideal destination for an easy day trip. And what better way to explore the island than a bike ride. The island of Veliki Brijun sports a 13 kilometer paved path which takes you through the Safari Park (with real elephants, ostriches and zebras), Ethno Park, archaeological sites, forests, golf courses, and many beaches and bays. This cycling route is so versatile and fun that a day will fly by and soon you will catch yourself daydreaming on the boat ride back. A day well spent!


Cycle through Brijuni


What you’ll need

  • Any kind of bike (rental available on site)



4. Stand-up-paddle around Cape Kamenjak

The pristine nature of Cape Kamenjak never fails to amaze its visitors. It’s fascinating above and below the sea surface, and a stand-up paddle is a perfect option to experience it. Get your board and explore the islets and bays of Kamenjak on your own terms. Don’t miss the caves of Kolombarica! If SUPing is not your cup of tea, kayaking is a great option, too. When you get tired of the water activities, you can get some refreshments in the Safari Bar - grab a cocktail, lay back and soak in the sun. Let's just say life doesn’t get much better than that.


Paddle around cape Kamenjak

JISTRA Adventures


What you’ll need

  • SUP or kayak (rental available on site)
  • a swimsuit
  • life-vest (safety first)



5. Dip your toes in the creeks of the Sentona trail

This short but very sweet trail got its name after the Liburnian goddess Sentona, the patroness of travelers. And it sure is divine: it's 3 kilometers long and it connects the medieval town of Labin with the coastal town of Rabac, both very much worth a visit. The trail itself is not very steep nor physically demanding. It follows the emerald creek, ornate with numerous cascades covered in moss. Serendipity guaranteed!


Hike on a trail alongside emerald creeks

Luka Filetin


What you’ll need

  • Hiking shoes or trail sneakers
  • hiking poles (optional)



A plateful of good things

One of the best things about Istria is the variety of experiences. It can be luxurious, authentic, and raw – all at once. Think of it as a noble elegant lady with the soul of a country girl.


A view of Istrian fields, Croatia


With hundreds of trails and country roads intertwined with crystal clear creeks and picturesque viewpoints, Istra also offers a good chance of running into a beautiful rustic tavern or a stone terrace with a view. So, for every few miles passed, don’t hesitate to reward yourself with an espresso, a glass of teran wine, or a rich portion of truffle pasta. Tire your body, and then replenish it generously. In Istria, one goes with the other so effortlessly. 


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Written by Zvonimira