ISTRIA, CROSSROAD OF CIVILIZATIONS
The Istrian Peninsula has always been the most visited part of Croatia. It is easily accessible and close to big parts of Western Europe. Istria has long been under Italian (Venetian) influence, which is still very much visible in picturesque towns like Rovinj, Porec, Pula and Motovun. Officially bilingual, Istria offers a very interesting mix of Slavic and Italian culture with the odd ‘Vienna of the Adriatic’, Opatija, also close. The beautiful coastlines offer family tourism on the West Coast and a more dramatic and secluded coast line with beautiful views on Kvarner Bay on the East Coast. The hilly inland reminds tourists of Tuscany, and great wines and truffles can be found. Cycling is also getting more and more popular, as is hiking.
The land register of Istria stems from the times of the Austria-Hungarian rule and is well-maintained. Developers like doing business in Istria, as the local government is better organized than in the South. But also private persons very often build their own villa in Istria. Istrian villas are build in a traditional style with stone walls, terracotta roofing and colorful wooden shutters. Large portions of building land are very scarce, but smaller pieces are more available. Newly built or renovated villas are to be found in the central region around Motovun and Svetvincinat. Sea view apartments are located at the coastal towns of Porec and Rovinj. Pula has a well-connected airport.