Pula – a trip to Istria
Croatia – a country which has recovered pretty well after the war in Yugoslavia is now known for its stunning holiday resorts which are growing like trees at the beautiful Riviera. We booked out trip last minute, and flew with Ryanair for the first and probably last time. The airline is not to blame actually: it’s the airport Frankfurt Hahn. Han is very old; the staff is unorganized and we had the misfortune that a lot of unsocial people were in our plane as well. I mean come on, the tolerances of the allowed hand luggage are clearly stated, why on earth do people bring huge suitcases, backpack’s and extra bags into the plane? I don’t understand why nobody from the Hahn staff is saying anything. The real trouble starts in the plane, when the stuff doesn’t fit in the trays.
The flight wasn’t long at all, and we were pretty happy once arrived. We took the bus for 5€ (converted from Kuna) to Verudela. Verudela is located in the south of Pula and the huge Park Plaza Resorts has its location there. The resort is super well monitored, clean and includes a lot of leisure attractions, bars and has its own promenade. Everything appears very touristic, good luck looking for the Croatian flair in this area. It’s perfect for travelers who like to have everything within a certain distance, on the other hand.
We stayed at the Park Plaza Histiria and our room was located directly next to the Champaign bar – what a coincidence. The room was clean and serve the purpose.
After unpacking, we finally made our way towards the pool. Wow. We just noticed on our way to the pool that we are by far the youngest couple in this resort. The hotel was filled with elderly people who are fighting over the best sunbeds at 7:00 in the morning. That was annoying.
Thank god we didn’t have to stay at the pool the whole time, the hotel was located directly by the sea. There were about 7-10 beaches within walking distance. We have tested a couple of them:
The sunbeds are on a hard-stone ground, directly on a cliff, and you need to pay for them. If you would like to take a swim, you need to use the leather. We didn’t enjoy this one – it was too cliffy.
Another blue flag beach, but instead of cliffs, you can directly enjoy the sun on pebbles. Unfortunately, the beach only offered plastic sun chairs and no sunbeds. This beach was a little bit too expensive compared to their offer.
Beach next to the beach villa resorts (with the slide)
This was our favorite beach. You could get a big sunbed with an umbrella and 2 beers (or cokes) for 140 Kuna a day. The beach is in front of a pine forest, which gives it a great atmosphere. Adventure seekers are able to enjoy the water park in the sea – not for free of course. The only downside of this amazing beach was the incompetent staff. The beach was supposed to open around 9:00 but the staff only showed up at 10:30 at some days. Pretty annoying. Some of the umbrellas were broken as well. Despite that, we were able to enjoy our days at the beach to their fullest, and cuddled on our big sunbed.
We found a restaurant called E&D via Tripadvisor app and tied to find it on our first evening. For whatever reason, there was no restaurant at all at the marked position. We were walking around for 2 kilometers and found Zeppeling bar instead. The waitress was super friendly and recommended us a pizza place, which we checked out the next day. She showed us the way to the E&D as well.
We arrived at the E&D 10 min later and were super happy about it. The food was OK. We both had pasta, but the portion was very small so we still starved a little bit.
On our second day, we took the Retro bus (or public transport bus) to Pula city. Originally, we were looking for the pizza place, but while walking there, we saw all the great sights of Pula: the amphitheater, the temple and some churches.
Food & drinks
Castropola 42, 52100 Pula
The place is hidden in a small alley, but the waitress from the beach was so right: They do have the best Pizza of Pula there! The pizza was simply delicious. We paid 130 Kuna for 2 pizzas, 0.5l wine, a bottle of water and 2 šljivovica, the typical Croatian schnapps. This meal was cheaper than our sunbed for 1 day. Crazy. The staff was stressed but super friendly. If you wanna have good pizza in Pula, go to this place!
There are plenty of ice-cream sellers on the main road, but the best ice creams are usually in small streets. We had an amazing ice cream in a small street, next to the shop DM.
Kandlerova ul. 34, 52100 Pula
A cozy wine bar in the center of Pula. The range of the wines and Champagnes is enormous, and Breda offers their self-made Schnapps and liqueurs as well. We recommend this place because our waitress was very friendly and had an excellent knowledge about wines. Cold plates could be ordered to accompany the wine. A nice, great place to relax and enjoy a good glass of wine.
Zlatne Stijene, uvala Saccorgiana, Verudela, 52100, Pula
Very cool beach bar, located in Verudela. We have enjoyed the sunset on comfortable chairs surrounded by pine trees. The beer is served ice cold.
We felt very comfortable being a same sex couple in Croatia. Some of the tourists were giving us weird looks, but no sign of actual discrimination. We have to say though that we are not one of those couples who constantly kiss each other or touch each other. Croatian locals have been super sweet to us and made our vacation a memorable tip.
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