Exploring Istria in a few days

I was recently asked for our recommendations for what not to miss on a few days stay during July in Istria.  After agonizing over the many possibilities, here are our conclusions for what not to miss on a  short stay in Istria:

In general

  • Pula amphitheater – the largest amphitheater outside rome – well preserved and interesting. Stroll along the sea and lunch in Pula harbor. On the  July 7th, there will be a concert of traditional folk music & instruments starting at 7:30 pm
  • Wander beautiful Rovinj – sparkling sea, teaming port, alluring colors, wonderful farmers market, many restaurants to sample Istrian cuisine, truffles & wines
  • Motovun hilltop town – a medieval hilltop town, unspoiled and nice to stroll, have a coffee of lunch – best place to try truffle recipes and Teran wines
  • Cave exploration , especially Lim & Marmornica
  • Biking trails – I suggest riding through the archeological sites and wine road
  • Truffles & cheese – try different indigenous dishes at family konobas & road side cafes
  • Wine tasting – be sure to compare Teran and Malvazija indigenous varietals

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Some Favorite Restaurants

  • Monte Mulini (Rovinj) – probably the best restaurant in Istria with indigenous dishes and carefully selected international & Croatian wines
  • Meneghetti Estate (Bale) – one of the top chefs, beautiful setting, traditional & progressive menu – of course good wines
  • Barba Danilo (Rovinj) – traditional Konoba (trattoria) style – specialize in sea food dishes – mediterranean style with a creative Istrian twist
  • Restaurant Blu (Rovinj) – on the sea, lovely location
  • Mondo Restaurant (Motovun) – local Konoba – try one of the truffle dishes

Some Favorite Wineries

  • Meneghetti wine estate in Bale – beautiful winery, good wines & olive oil tastings
  • Kozlovic Winery in Momjan – traditional
  • Matosevic Winery in Svet Lovrec – modest winery with excellent wines – a truly Istrian wine family
  • Roxanich Winery in Kosinožići – modest winery with aged wines – good for vertical tasting – interesting orange wines
  • Kabola Winery in Momjan (uses amphorae to age the wine) or Cuj winery in Umag – family winery where your can also try local olive oil tasting
  • Coronica Winery in Koreniki – we especially like their Malvazija wine

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