Make a cycling tour through Croatia and discover the beautiful Istria peninsula.
Istria is a perfect combination between an active and a quiet holiday destination and don't be surprised if it wins you over with its charm. Should you choose Buje, Buzet, Motovun or Groznjan, you will find privacy and the silence of medieval hill towns where you will familiarize yourself with the gastronomy and the traditional wine making. Motovun (also known as Montona, the birth place of the Formula 1 champion Mario Andretti) is a small town in the interior part of Istria, above the valley of the Mirna River. Surrounded by green Istrian landscape and wine roads the town is also famous for its summer film festival. Up the same river valley is located Buzet. It is an authentic Istrian town that was settled in ancient history and is known as the town of truffles.
Day 1: Arrival
Individual arrival in Poreč. Welcome meeting with the guide and program presentation.
Day 2: Poreč - Buje, ~78 km/49 miles
Your cycling tour in Istria will start with a walking tour of Porec, the town where you can find material and spiritual evidences of great cultures at every step. In the city center you will see the old Roman forum, the world famous Euphrasian Basilica with its mosaics, palaces belonging to the city nobles and fortifications. The ride along this trail is particularly pleasant because you are riding along the coastline with beautiful bays where you can enjoy the breathtaking Mediterranean landscape with green vineyards and olive groves and taste homemade food, wine, brandy and honey produced in this area. Following the trail, you will reach Višnjan, a little place that vaunts an astronomical observatory ranked among the 5 most important observatories in the world. In afternoon you arrive in Umag - the town that, apart for its incandescent Riviera, vaunts a rich historical heritage and a unique event - the festival of the traditional organ (Organum Histriae). Situated on a peninsula the town was founded in the transitional period from late antiquity into the early middle age, with the historic center that loudly speaks with the spirit of the proud Venetian Republic. Over Savudrija, the northeast point of Istria, you ride to Buje area.
Day 3: Buje - Buzet, ~51 km/32 miles
On the way to Buzet you will ride across Grožnjan - a typical Istrian medieval town sprout high on top of the hill along the right coast of the river Mirna, vaunting its centenary walls, its renaissance loggia dating from 1585 and the beautiful St. Vitus and Modestus baroque church. If you just occasionally ride along its streets in which almost every door leads to art studios or galleries, and which windows from every direction echoes the sounds of different music genres, from classical to jazz, you’ll understand why Grožnjan is known as "The town of artists". Šterna - a village named after a big local cistern (on local dialect - Šterna) is situated on the large plateau intersected by water flows. Oprtalj, with unchanged urban medieval disposition, the narrow streets, the shops, the beautiful Venetian palaces, portals and covered passages, and particularly the unique view to the Istrian peninsula from the town loggia, according to many the most beautiful of Istria. Buzet, known as long as in the Roman times as Pinquentium, today is named as ’’The city of truffles’’, considers that the surrounding forests along the valley of the river Mirna cover some of the best areas of entire Istria for the hunting of this divine tuberous.
Day 4: Buzet - Labin, ~66 km/42 miles
After a tuft climb to Prodani the road leads to one of the most attractive and picturesque Istrian medieval towns - Draguc. The place which, until some hundred years ago lived from the cultivation of the silk-worm today is almost completely abandoned. Its unforgettable natural position and the exceptional beauty of the stone architecture, the modest palaces, the walls and the old churches, perhaps could seem somehow familiar. Considering that right here has been recorded numerous national and foreign production movies and TV series, maybe you have already noticed Draguc on some movie or TV screen. Draguc is well-known in the movie industry. Many films were made in this town, like the famous "The 3 musketeers". Ride on to Pazin - a true heart of Istria! First written records referring to the city as Castrum Pisinum appeared in 983 and presently, Pazin is known as a commercial, cultural and educational center of the entire central Istria. Unique for its spectacular position above the karst abyssal cave, Pazin holds the medieval Pazin Castle - Kaštel (today, the Ethnographic Museum of Istria and the Municipal Museum are both in the castle) located on the verge of a 130 meters deep abyss. The famous writer Jules Vern used the Pazin castle in his novel "Matthias Sandorf". Being an absolute pearl of the Istrian hinterland, the entrance into Gracišce can be really enchanting: a magnificent Salomon Mansion made in the combination of gothic and renaissance styles, it makes you think for a moment as if you were lost in some distant corner of Venice. Continue further through Kršan, feudal land property, having obtained its name for the rockiness of the spot and at the same time, was erected on the foundations of an ancient early medieval castle, you arrive in Rabac, the pearl of the Kvaerner bay.
Day 5: Labin - Pula, ~53 km/33 miles
After breakfast you ride across Raša, the first modern mining town in Istria and across Barban to Pula. On the way you will find "Liburna", a nature reserve of autochthon animals. Apart from these charming animals, in particular sociable donkeys, you will find here a unique ethnological collection of antique tools. Which city is situated on seven hills, has a magnificent Amphitheater and is not Rome? The answer is - Pula. No, it is not a mistake - you are, indeed, in front of Pula, the largest city in Istria. Pula is an enchantress with thousand appearances which has been casting spell on its visitors for centuries. This day you finish visiting the old city with the Sergius' Triumphal Arch (from the end of the 1st century B.C. and the beginning of the 1st century A.D.) and famous Arena, a Roman amphitheater from the 1st century B.C.
Day 6: Pula - Rovinj, ~56 km/35 miles
After breakfast you start riding along the coastline towards Rovinj. You head for the mysterious world of Bale region, proud for its glorious Bembo Castle of the Gothic and Renaissance period and the parish church of St. Julian. Bale had been developed from the ancient Roman castrum (military fortification) along Via Flavia, the ancient Roman road that used to connect Trieste and Pula. Svetvincenat, with its grandiose Morosini - Grimani citadel with towers, parish church, municipal loggia and a line of 16th century houses of the Renaissance and a town cistern- Sterna in the middle. Svetvincenat really belongs to a range of the most attractive Venetian creations of that period effected in this region, and withheld one of the rare witchcraft trials in Istria during 17th century. This day you will finish in Rovinj.
Day 7: Rovinj - Poreč, ~60 km/38 miles
A marsh, rare birds, a cursed city, buried pirate’s treasure, a deep bay, a cave with a primitive man and a hermit, an ancient solar observatory - all this you will find during today’s biking. Your bike ride will takes you over Kanfanar to the ruins of the medieval town Dvigrad. Just to stir your imagination - you are now in an area where many legends and mysteries based on historical events still live on: that of Dvigrad devastated by the plague because of an ancient curse, of the buried treasure of Captain Morgan's pirates near the village named after him (Mrgani), of the cave where the remains of the primitive man were found and where, as legend has it, St Romuald used to live as a hermit in the Middle Ages. After riding along the coastline you reach Vrsar, romantic fishermen village where the famous Casanova came back even two times. Your one week bike tour will finish in Porec where you will spend last night.
Day 8: Departure
Leave Poreč after the breakfast.
7 nights in 3*** and 4**** hotels or guest houses
7x tourist tax
detailed tour documentation
self-guided tour - 8 days / 7 nights
arrival every day
season I (590 €/person in double and 690 €/person in single)
season II (670 €/person in double and 790 €/person in single)
season III (690 €/person in double and 810 €/person in single)
season IV (760 €/person in double and 900 €/person in single)
route (2): ~364 km/228 miles
through a gently hilly countryside
how to get there
by car: motorway to Porec
by train: station Porec
by plane: airport Porec, Pula or Trieste
at the 1st hotel, on request, reservation needed
from airport in Pula or Triest to Porec on request
half board in Rovinj is not included
some of our bike tour suggestions