If you’re planning a trip to Croatia, make sure to include Pula on your itinerary. This charming city on the Adriatic coast offers a mix of history, culture, and stunning natural beauty. Here are some tips on what to see and do during your three-day visit to Pula.
Day 1: Historical Sights
Pula has a rich history dating back to Roman times, and you can see some of the city’s most important historical sights on your first day.
- Amphitheatre – One of the most impressive ancient Roman buildings in Croatia, the Amphitheatre is a must-see attraction in Pula. This well-preserved arena was built in the 1st century AD and could seat up to 23,000 spectators for gladiator battles and other events.
- Temple of Augustus – This 2,000-year-old temple is one of the best-preserved Roman structures in Croatia. It was built during the reign of Emperor Augustus and served as a place of worship for the colony of Pula.
- Arch of the Sergii – Located in the heart of the old town, this Roman triumphal arch dates back to the 1st century BC and is a great example of ancient architecture in Pula.
After a morning of sightseeing, take a break and enjoy a traditional Croatian lunch at one of the many restaurants in the old town. Some recommended options are Batelina, Konoba Batelina, and Milan.
Day 2: Nature and Beaches
Pula is surrounded by beautiful natural landscapes, and your second day is the perfect opportunity to explore some of them.
- Kamenjak National Park – This stunning park is located just a short drive from Pula and features rocky beaches, crystal-clear waters, and diverse flora and fauna. You can spend the day hiking, swimming, or just enjoying the scenery.
- Cape Kamenjak – This rugged peninsula is a paradise for nature lovers. It’s a great place to go for a walk, take a bike ride, or relax on one of the secluded beaches.
- Brijuni Islands – Take a boat tour to this stunning archipelago off the coast of Pula. You can explore the island’s lush vegetation, ancient ruins, and even see some exotic animals like elephants and zebras.
After a day of adventure, head back to the city and enjoy a seafood dinner at one of Pula’s many waterfront restaurants. Some recommended options are Farabuto, Konoba Vodnjanka, and Restaurant Volaria.
Day 3: Culture and Free Tours
On your final day in Pula, take some time to explore the city’s cultural offerings and take advantage of the many free tours available.
- Historical Museum of Istria – This museum is located in a beautiful 18th-century palace in the old town and offers a fascinating glimpse into the history and culture of Istria.
- Pula City Tour – Take a free walking tour of the city and learn about Pula’s rich history and culture. Some of the highlights include the Roman Forum, the Cathedral of the Assumption of Mary, and the Venetian Fortress.
- Food Tour – Take a free food tour of Pula and sample some of the city’s best local cuisine. Some of the dishes you can try include Istrian prosciutto, truffles, and local seafood.
For your final meal in Pula, try some traditional Croatian dishes at one of the city’s many cozy taverns. Some recommended options are Konoba Batelina, Konoba Ancora, and Konoba 85.
Where to Stay in Pula
There are many great options for accommodation in Pula, whether you’re looking for a luxury hotel or a budget-friendly hostel.
- Hotel Park Plaza Histria – This 4-star hotel is located on the beachfront and offers stunning views of the Adriatic Sea. It features a spa, outdoor pool, and several restaurants.
- Hostel Amfora – This budget-friendly hostel is located in the heart of the old town and offers comfortable rooms and a shared kitchen.
- Verudela Beach Resort – This family-friendly resort is located on the Verudela peninsula and features several swimming pools, sports facilities, and a range of restaurants and bars.
No matter where you choose to stay, make sure to book in advance during the high season (June to August) as Pula is a popular tourist destination.
Where to Eat in Pula
Pula is known for its delicious seafood and traditional Istrian cuisine. Here are some recommended restaurants to try during your visit.
- Batelina – This family-run restaurant is a local favorite and serves up some of the best seafood in Pula. Don’t miss their famous seafood platter.
- Farabuto – This waterfront restaurant specializes in fresh seafood and Mediterranean cuisine. Their octopus salad and grilled fish are must-tries.
- Konoba Batelina – Located in the fishing village of Banjole just outside of Pula, this restaurant offers an authentic Istrian dining experience. Their truffle dishes are particularly popular.
- Vodnjanka – This family-run restaurant is located in the heart of the old town and serves up traditional Istrian dishes like homemade pasta and grilled meats.
Keep in mind that many restaurants in Pula close during the off-season (November to March), so it’s a good idea to check ahead of time.
Free Tours in Pula
One of the best ways to get to know Pula is through the many free tours offered by local guides.
- Pula City Tour – This walking tour covers the city’s main sights and provides an overview of Pula’s history and culture.
- Food Tour – This tour takes you to some of Pula’s best restaurants and allows you to sample traditional Croatian dishes.
- Street Art Tour – Explore Pula’s vibrant street art scene and learn about the artists and their work.
These tours are a great way to get off the beaten path and see a different side of Pula. Make sure to tip your guide if you enjoy the tour.
What is the best time of year to visit Pula?
The best time to visit Pula is during the summer months (June to August) when the weather is warm and sunny. However, this is also the busiest time of year, so be prepared for crowds and higher prices. If you prefer a quieter experience, consider visiting in the shoulder season (May, September, or October) when the weather is still pleasant and the crowds have thinned out.
Is Pula a safe city for tourists?
Yes, Pula is generally a safe city for tourists. However, it’s always a good idea to take common-sense precautions like not leaving valuables unattended and being aware of your surroundings, particularly in crowded areas.
What currency is used in Pula?
The official currency of Croatia is the kuna (HRK). While many places in Pula accept euros, it’s a good idea to have some kunas on hand for smaller purchases and transactions.
Is English widely spoken in Pula?
Yes, English is widely spoken in Pula, particularly in tourist areas. However, it’s always appreciated if you make an effort to learn a few basic Croatian phrases.
Pula is a hidden gem on Croatia’s Adriatic coast and offers a mix of history, culture, and natural beauty. Whether you’re interested in ancient Roman ruins, pristine beaches, or delicious seafood, there’s something for everyone in this charming city. Follow our travel tips and make the most of your three-day visit to Pula.
And remember to check out the official website of the city of Pula, Croatia for more information and resources to plan your trip. Click here to visit the website.