Thursday, August 13, 2015

Central Istria

Central Istria
mythical landscapes medieval towns and a rich heritage

Any of the main roads from the eastern, western or southern Istrian coast will take you to Pazin in the center of the Istrian peninsula. The Kaštel fortification above the Pazin-Pisinočica River, a natural phenomenon and a beautiful example of the evolution of karst hydrography. Today it is home to the Ethnographic Museum of Istria and the Pazin City Museum.

To the north is Motovun, inhabited since prehistory and a picturesque medieval town with a rich cultural and historical heritage. It dominates over the Mirna River and the Motovun woods, famous for their truffles.

The town of Buzet is just upstream, on a hilltop in the middle of the Mirna River Valley and its Roman fortifications. The central square includes the parochial church of the Blessed Virgin Mary’s Assumption and the County Museum.

Roč is an active cultural center along with Hum - the smallest town in the world. Between the two small towns there is a unique memorial complex dedicated to the old Croatian Glagolitic alphabet and culture. Hiking trails take you from picturesque medieval architecture over the slopes to the Cicarija plateau and the largest Istrian mountain and nature park of nature; Učka is one of the last European localities where bird lovers will be rewarded with sights of the griffon vulture or the golden eagle. 

For Information and Reservations

Lupoglav, in northeastern Istria played an important part in area history; the creation of Pazin County resulted in a division between Austria and Venice with border disputes leading to numerous wars. Located at the crossroads of the main route from Trieste to Rijeka, it is an excellent base from which to visit Italy, Slovenia and Croatia: Trieste 64 km, Porec 53 km, Pula 65 km, Buzet 15 km, Motovun  22 km, Rijeka 35 km, Opatija 23 km, Ucka National Park 10 Km,  Plitvice National Park 200 km and Postojnska Jama  Grottoes in Slovenia 100 km. Points of Interest include:

Mahrenfels Castle, the residence of the local nobility, stood until the mid 17th century. Lupoglav was owned by the Bavarian Archdukes and was named Mahrenfels. A document dating back to 1112 first names Lupoglav with its current Croatian name.
Brigido Country Mansion, surrounded by a tall stone wall, the noble Brigido Family successfully introduced many agricultural innovations, particularly in livestock farming - the breeding of merino sheep, Egyptian sheep and Angora goat. A model estate of its time, many Istrian farmers sent their heirs to learn practical estate, agriculture and farm management.

In the south, you reach Žminj, a small town where old Istrian houses and holdings now serve as  farm houses; accommodations and  an opportunity to savor homemade Istrian cooking.

Further south is Svetvinčenat, the art center of southern Istria. It is placed on the karst plateau and surrounded by woods, pasture grounds and vineyards.
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