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About Istria

Istria is the heart shaped peninsula at the westernmost point of Croatia, jutting out with its beautiful riviera coastline into the Adriatic. It's just south of Trieste, Italy, and has been part of a number of nations, the Venetian Empire included, so Istria has a continental feel and a rich culture drawn from many places. There's a good mix of European tourists, it's popular with German, French and relatively local Italians, and that also adds to the cosmopolitan culture. Choosing the best places to stay in Istria depends on what you're here for.

Where to stay

  • 'Blue Istria', which is what the rocky, crenellated coastal region is called (Rovinj is the ideal base for exploring here), is for sun and sea lovers,
  • while 'Green Istria' refers to the quiet, verdant interior with its undulating hills, hilltop villages and rich cuisine.

What Not To Miss

  • The beaches of the Istrian peninsula aren't sandy, they're pebbled, or else the sea meets the shore in stunning rocky coves and sheer cliffs, but the water is super clear and there's plenty of sunshine. These conditions also appeal to sailors, and the addition of white sails in the marina adds glamour to the resort towns.
  • The interior, in contrast, is peaceful and unspoiled, with historic towns perching on hilltops overlooking lush fields. This is where much of the region's reputation for delicious cuisine comes from. Especially during truffle season.
  • Istria also has a number of vineyards. The Istrian interior is also a wonderful playground for walkers and cyclists.
  • Alternatively, take a truffle tour where you can learn all about truffles, the history of truffle hunting and even sample various truffle products.

This is a popular region during the peak summer months. So if you want to bag a bed in one of the best places to stay in Istria during July or August, get organised and book early.

The best places to stay in Istria

For spectacular views

  • Villa Stefanija nestles among untouched hills and enjoys stunning views down to the Adriatic. Spacious, airy rooms plus sun terrace, infinity pool and spa create the perfect ingredients for a romantic hideaway.

To escape

  • The Wine Hotel & Restaurant Meneghetti is a wonderful restaurant, vineyard and wine cellar with rooms, surrounded by stunning views of the Istrian countryside. The hotel itself has been converted from a stone farmhouse, and there are indoor and outdoor pools and the choice of several dining areas, all serving impeccable Mediterranean cuisine.

For a riviera break

  • The Hotel Monte Mulini in Rovinj is a relatively swanky affair in a great spot on the beautiful Croatian Riviera. The decor is modern, and makes excellent use of the spectacular views, and there are two excellent restaurants nd a top of the range spa.
  • Hotel Lone is superb luxury property overlooking Lone Bay. It's sleek and contemporary with excellent facilities including indoor and outdoor pools, tennis courts, gym and spa, plus three restaurants and four bars.

For an apartment or villa

  • If you'd prefer a self-catering option this holiday - don't hesitate to visit our online partner, Booking.com for a wonderful selection of coastal properties ideal for making the most of the sea.

Travel Information

  • Fly to Pula Airport located 8.5km (5.3 miles) from Pula with a range of flights across Europe.
  • Alternatively, catch a train to Istria with rail links across the country to Pula.
  • If you want to rent a car to explore the stunning coast or winding hills, click here for prices and booking with our online partner Rental Cars.
  • Best time to visit - the summer from June to August for hot weather.

Still not sure?

Best Hotels in Istria

  • Villa Stefanija 7 rooms from £96


    Nestled in untouched hills with breathtaking views of the Adriatic Sea, the hotel's sun terrace, infinity pool & spa provide the ultimate romantic and relaxing experience. Rooms are airy and spacious, some with private balconies. Fab restaurant serves delicious Croatian dishes and local wines.

    Hideaway  -  A stunning rural location with breathtaking views out to sea make this the perfect summer hideaway.
    Views  -  Stunning views over the Kvarner Gulf and its islands
    Great walks  -  Great walks from the hotel
    Sights nearby  -  Roman town of Pula
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  • Wine Hotel & Restaurant Meneghetti 2 rooms from £110


    A beautiful stone farmhouse with its own vineyards and olive groves in the heart of Istria. Romantic rustic rooms and suites have wooden floors and pastel furnishings. Stunning views, Mediterranean cuisine, indoor and outdoor pools, and dining areas dotted around. Utterly romantic and rural.

    Foodies  -  Healthy and fragrant Mediterranean cuisine.
    Romantic Break
    Swimming Pool  -  Indoor and Outdoor Pools
    Great walks  -  Good for walkers.
    Recommended by  -  Relais & Chateaux
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  • Hotel Lone 248 rooms from £154


    Outstanding 5* by crystal sea of Lone Bay. Minimalist rooms feature private balconies, uber modern bathrooms and pale wood furniture. Indoor and outdoor pool, beach area, gym, spa and tennis courts. Three restaurants and four bars all focus on gourmet hospitality. Immeasurably chic.

    Total relaxation  -  Like a curvy ship into the hills, the spacious hotel's gardens are fragrant with lavender and rosemary, with a superb spa
    Romantic Break  -  Float from indoor pool, to spa, to luxurious beach club with concierge and cocktails
    Great walks  -  In pleasant shade of trees in the protected Zlatni rt forest park (Punta Corrente
    Sights nearby  -  Church of Our Mother of Mercy
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  • Hotel Monte Mulini 99 rooms from £513


    A superbly swanky hotel on the Croatian Riviera. Large slick modern design throughout rooms and suites, private balconies with stunning bay views, and all the mod cons. Two excellent restaurants, top of the range spa, four tennis courts nearby. A sophisticated spot for a beach holiday.

    Views  -  Wonderful views over the bay.
    Spa breaks
    Romantic Break
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