Lying on the hillside of sleepy Brnobici, the house has panoramic views of the Istrian coast. From Brnobici, it is a pleasant stroll through country lanes to the adjoining villages of Kastelir and Labinci. In the area there are plenty of locals selling their own wine, olive oil and rakija (grappa), as well as several shops for all your supplies, and several good restaurants.
For such a small area there is an amazingly large amount to do in Istria. As well as all the usual seaside attractions there are numerous attractive coastal towns and unspolit hill-top, stone villages. Here are a few:
Porec – the main local centre has a 12th Century Basilica which is a world heritage site in the lovely old centre. Also plenty of restaurants and beaches (about 10 minutes drive).
Rovinj – Rovinj is one of the jewels of the Adriatic. It is a beautiful, old coastal town whichis totally unspoilt. Many of our guests have also gone for dinner in the evening and said it is magical.
Groznjan – this lovely hill-top village is a musicians and handicraft enclave. It has charming handicraft shops, no modern development and fantastic views.
Novigrad – just up the coast is a lovely coastal town, much sleepier than Porec.
Motovun – is a perfect hill-top, walled town. It’s a steep walk up from the parking, but if you park in the car park at the bottom there is a bus.
Limski Canal – this flooded gorge is a wooded inlet from the sea. It lies between Porec and Rovinj and the drive beside it is beautiful. If you like mussles, it is the place to go as they are grown in the gorge and served fresh from the sea. It is also possible to visit by boat on one of the many boat trips available in Porec.
Pula – the biggest town in Istria, is home to the 6th largest ampithetre in the world. It is perfectly preserved and hosts concerts in the summer (we've seen Tom Jones and Nora Jones (honest a coincidence of surname) there and they were wonderful nights out). There are various other Roman ruins in Pula.
Vrsar – between Porec and Rovinj is another lovely coastal town. The town cascades down the hillside to the sea. Make sure you get right to the top as the views are spectacular.
In-land hill villages – totally unspoilt and a beautiful drive away are several other beautiful inland hill-top villages including Roc, Hum, Draguc and Gracisce. For me these are the best bit of Istria. They look as if time's stood still and even in high summer you'll often have them all to yourselves.
Just over the border in Slovenia, there’s the delightful seaside town of Piran. You can also visit the world famous Lipanja horses and the Plitvise caves (the largest in the world). Ljubljana, the capital, is worth a visit, but it’s 2.5 hours away.
Apart from sightseeing, Baredine Caves is only a few minutes drive away. Also close-by are paragliding, horse riding, karting and paint-balling. On the coast there are the usual amusements - banana boat, parasailing, boat hire and trips, diving etc.
Istria's great for bike riding and the area round Kastelir has lots of quiet lanes. Bike hire can be arranged before you come (just let me know) and bikes can be delivered to the property for you, or there are plenty of places for bike hire in Porec.