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VantagePoint Travel Club: Istria, Croatia

Explore a lesser-known region of Croatia, says your local Personal Holiday Planning Concierge service, Tony Chant from Not Just Travel!

In this issue, we whisk you away to a lesser-known but equally enticing region of Croatia, the peninsula of Istria in the far north of the country. It’s a perfect destination for culturally interested travellers seeking an alternative to the beach resorts of the popular Dalmatian coast between Split and Dubrovnik. Here are four particular highlights:

1. Pula and Rovinj
Steeped in history, the port of Pula is the region’s biggest city. As you amble through the streets, you will encounter beautifully preserved Roman ruins, the most striking of these being the amphitheatre dating from the first century AD. Do catch an open-air concert here if you can. Below ground, the Zerostrasse tunnels were built during WW1 to shelter citizens from air raids.

With its vivid, pastel-coloured buildings and hilltop 18th-century church overlooking the azure blue of the Adriatic, Rovinj is the jewel of the Istrian coastline. Enjoy lunch with a harbour view and then wander round the coast to the forest park of Zlatni Rt to take a dip in the sea.

2. Brijuni Islands
Perfect for a shady stroll, the Brijuni Islands were once home to President Tito. It was here that he entertained politicians, film stars and royalty from around the world and he even had his own zoo, which is still in operation today. Pop in to the ‘Boathouse’ to learn more about the culture, history and natural heritage of this archipelago, just a 15-minute boat ride from Fažana.

3. The Verudela Peninsula
An ideal location for a lazy day in the sun and a swim in crystal clear waters, this national park in southern Istria is shaped by a rugged landscape and numerous inlets and bays and can be explored on foot, by bike, by car or even by boat.

4. Inland Istria
You’ll need your own wheels to explore the verdant rolling hills of inland Istria but the scenic drive and picturesque hilltop towns, such as Motovun, Hum, and Roč, are well worth the effort. Enjoy Istrian delicacies such as fuži (a type of pasta) and truffles in a charming konoba (tavern).

So, if you would like to know more about a holiday in Istria or need help to set out an itinerary in another destination, give Tony a call on 01428 748440 or visit www.Facebook.com/NotJustTravelTonyChant.

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