Wednesday, August 19, 2015

Day 2 of Istria Road Trip (ShareIstria: Day 2)

Day 2 begins with a trip to Pula, only 10 km from Sisan. One of the best things about Istria is that one can travel from one part of Istria to any other part of Istria in less than 1 hour. 

When driving in Croatia you'll notice that traffic signals are rare. Instead of traffic lights, there are traffic circles that keep the traffic moving.

In Pula, we meet with Nenad Stojkovski, our Pula tour guide.

Our first stop is the Arena, the only remaining Roman amphitheatre to have four side towers and with all three Roman architectural orders entirely preserved. It was constructed in 27 BC – 68 AD and is among the six largest surviving Roman arenas in the World.

Nenad shows us all around Pula, including the Town Hall (City Palace), Kastel on the hilltop with an amazing view of Pula, and Zerostrasse labyrinth of tunnels that connects Pula underground. Zerostrasse are tunnels made by the Austro - Hungarian Empire for protection of Pula, main harbor at that time.

After the long walk through Pula, Yacht Restaurant at Park Plaza Histria Hotel awaits us. The view is amazing and the food is delicious.

Next stop is Aquarium Pula. Aquarium Pula is located in the Austro-Hungarian fortress Verudela, which was built in 1886 on the peninsula 3 km from Pula center. Their new jellyfish exhibit is awesome.

After getting all excited about the sea life, we're on our way back to Park Plaza to go snorkeling with the Orca Diving Centar.

Goran really tired out us today.

Our next stop is to see kazuns near Vodnjan. Kazuns are small stone shelters found throughout Istria, allowing  for only 1 or 2 people to comfortably sit inside.  They have been used over the centuries to store food and supplies, and provide temporary shelter for people. There are approximately 5,000 kazun shelters in Istria at present, and 2,000 -3,000 of them are located in this area. Thee used to be 10,000-20,000 kazun shelters in south Istria alone.

There's also another surprise waiting - lovable donkeys waiting to take us to the town of Vodnjan.

We walk a bit through Vodnjan and then go to  Trattoria Vodnjanka for some freshly prepared food.

We also meet with Paul, the international marketing manager at Brist, and get to try his delicious olive oil - Brist Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Paul demonstrates the right way to test the olive oil and we follow his lead. Delicious olive oil!

It's getting really late and it's time to leave. What a day!


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