Read about or view our narrated video of Rovinj
In this tour, we take a look at the beautiful town of Rovinj on the mid-west coast of Istria.
Rovinj is one of the most picturesque and romantic towns in Europe, and here you can see why.
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A few facts to start:
The Old Town of Rovinj was once an island and it was joined to the mainland in 1763 by filling in the channel.
From 1283 to 1797 Rovinj was governed by the Republic of Venice who fortified the town with three town gates and two rows of defensive walls.
The original town name of Rovigno was changed into Rovinj after the formation of Yugoslavia.
Many inhabitants still speak Italian who still refer to it as Rovigno.
Rovinj Video Tour
You can watch our video tour of Rovinj right here on this page, or click the YouTube link in the video panel to see it there.
To see all our video tours in one place, you can go to our YouTube Channel. Or, if you prefer, you can read our written tour below the video.
We hope you enjoy your tour of Rovinj and will feel inspired to visit Istria soon.
Read our tour of Rovinj...
Rovinj manages to successfully combine its rich traditions with modern times, resulting in a town that anyone can enjoy, regardless of age.
The town’s beauty and appeal has been formed over the centuries from its turbulent past, to become a hot favourite of visitors to Istria.
Saint Euphemia Church - Rovinj
Starting at one of the town’s most distinguishing features, we take you to the baroque church of Saint Euphemia and its bell tower, which dominates the view of the town. On top of the bell tower is a copper statue of Saint Euphemia, which rotates with the direction of the wind.
Climbing the bell tower is the best way to see the whole of Rovinj and get spectacular views over the town.
The church sits on top of the hill, and at the centre of the Old Town, once an island, until the narrow channel was filled in and connected it to the mainland in 1763.
Before the ‘Old Town’ was connected to the mainland, space was scarce on this island which was fortified by two walls and which explains why many of the brightly painted buildings are so tall, and why the streets are so narrow. This gives the Old Town much of its present-day appeal, as tourists love to wander these streets and discover the distinctive shops and boutiques around the town. It seems, wherever you go, there is a turning that leads to hidden alleyways and new discoveries.
Shopping in Rovinj Old Town
Leading down from the church is one of the Old Town’s most popular shopping streets, Grisia Street. The street is picturesquely cobbled and lined with all kinds of unique shops. If you are looking for something special to remind you of your visit, this is the place to look. You will find an abundance of handmade items by local craftspeople, including many art shops.
The intensive artistic life of the Mediterranean flourishes, on walls, walkways, and in courtyards of this steep street. Painters, sculptors, and other artists from the whole of Istria and from all parts of Croatia as well as from abroad present their work somewhere along Grisia street.
After leaving Grisia Street, you will exit the Old Town, passing through Balbis Arch, the only gateway still standing from the original walled town. Close by is the Farmers Market. This is a small but well-stocked market where you can find vendors selling truffles, honey, fresh vegetables, fruits, and more.
Nearby is the harbour, where you will see hundreds of boats, including pleasure craft, glamorous yachts, and fishing boats. Rovinj has been a fishing port for many centuries, and you can still see the fishermen arriving to unload their catch around the main harbour. Much of the fish goes directly to local restaurants which explains why you will see fresh fish on many menus outside the eating establishments.
You will also see that restaurants sell many pasta dishes, pizzas, and lots of cuisines originating from Italy. There are historical reasons for this, as all of Istria once belonged to Italy, and many of the locals still speak Italian.
Coffee & Rovinj
If you like coffee, you are going to love Rovinj!
Rovinj seems to have inherited its Italian habits in the form of its obsession with coffee. You can find cafes on just about every street throughout the town. So, if your idea of time well spent is good conversation, people watching, or just soaking up the view, whilst drinking your favourite coffee, you are in the right place!
Shopping in Rovinj
For anyone who likes shopping, Rovinj can be a paradise!
The town is blessed with all kinds of shops, and you will see many boutiques selling enticing items across clothing, jewellery, and perfumery.
Many shops are open until late evening. So, as evening descends on Rovinj, you will invariably see people leaving their chosen restaurant and wandering around the shops to view and buy as they please.
Water Taxis & Tours
Many tours and water taxis originate at the harbour in Rovinj. From short trips around the many archipelagos nearby to longer trips to places along the Istrian Adriatic coastline. Some include food on board and informative commentary for site seers, whilst others are there simply to take you to your destination.
The nearest island, and one which dominates the view from the harbour, is Saint Catherines Island and is the second-largest island in the Rovinj archipelago… It takes only about 5 to 10 minutes to get there, and we heartily recommend it.
You will discover a small island that is well known for beautiful gardens, parks, and the richness of its vegetation. If you like quiet beaches and small coves, it’s well worth a day trip to just relax on the beach and enjoy your time there.
Evening in Rovinj
Evening in the town frequently delivers stunning sunsets which are very popular with visitors. You will often see people gathering at specific areas to get the best view of the sun as it goes down. Some people just look and wonder, others are there with their cameras and tripods to catch that elusive award-winning shot.
There is so much to say about Rovinj that we cannot cover in just one tour. But it’s enough for you to know that this town will give you a holiday full of entertainment, activities, and discovery. And something that says so much about Rovinj, are the many visitors who return many times to enjoy what it has to offer.
Want to see more Istria Tours?
We hope you have enjoyed your tour of Rovinj.
Love Istria Travel is producing a growing number of tours around the Croatian county of Istria.
We want people to see the beauty of this county and show how you can get a fulfilling visit here, not just on the beautiful coastline, but by discovering some of the wonderful locations inland.