Istrian Riviera holidays take Italy's Roman ruins and top nosh, and fuse them with Croatia's dreamy beaches and rugged charms.

Croatia meets Italy

The Istrian Riviera’s about as north as you can go in Croatia. It’s practically part Italian Stallion, too – with Roman ruins and Venetian architecture cropping up all over the place. City-wise, Umag, Pula and Rovinj are the big names knocking about. Or give them the brush off and head to one of the region’s hilltop towns, which are the totally traditional types.

Istria’s golden boy

The Romans gave Pula its ace in the hole – Croatia’s very own Colosseum. The amphitheatre’s still on its feet today, but the closest you’ll get to a fight is the weekly, mock-up gladiator show. And it doesn’t stop there. The city’s chock-full of age-old sights, from underground tunnels and mosaics to a Roman temple and Venetian fort. Speaking of Venetian, you can chow down on a plateful of pasta or fresh seafood, too.

Tourist-friendly town

Further north, Porec’s top-notch for package holidays with a slap of history. A mob of beaches are the bread to the town’s relic-filled sandwich. They’re pebbly bays, which means the Adriatic Sea’s super-clear and you can wave goodbye to sandy toes. Top billing, though, goes to the fancy Euphrasian Basilica and the let-your-hair-down nightlife. To top it off, daytrips to some of the country’s national parks are easy-peasy.

At a Glance

  • Dig into pasta topped with the region’s famous truffles
  • Check out the glittering mosaics inside Porec’s basilica
  • Cosy up for a film at Pula’s amphitheatre

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