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      our holidays > Cycling Holidays > Croatia > Idyllic Istria

Idyllic Istria

Along wine roads to a colourful coast
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Mrs L Hughes  Weston-super-mare September 2018

A lovely cycling holiday through Istrian countryside and coastline. However we felt that customer service levels at the last two hotels were not up to the usual high standard that Inntravel so often get right. This probably needs reviewing as the second hotel is not suited for this type of trip. However it won’t put us off booking in the future as we have had 5 or 6 fantastic experiences over the years.

Mr S Fowler  Bedford September 2018

Istra (or Istria in Italian) is a wonderful undiscovered area of Croatia. If you're looking for holiday resorts don't come here: if however you like good food, great people and stunning Venetian hill top towns, do come and visit. 

Anon   September 2018

Istria was lovely. The hotels were all superb with great food and service. The backup available was also very good with the option of riding in the transfer vehicle if over tired or unwell.

Rob and Pat  Dorset September 2018
We were delighted with our cycling holiday in Istria - a beautiful country with plenty of opportunities to vary the routes and to extend or shorten the rides. The paths along the coast are particularly pleasing with a lot of safe bathing areas. Our hosts at Merlo Olivio were very accommodating and as the only wet day occurred on the day we should have cycled to Bale - we actually accompanied our luggage and our bikes came too. The hotel in Bale is exceptionally comfortable with spacious rooms and excellent food. We did however one evening eat at the Konoba Bemba next door to the hotel and had a very good steak. We were glad to have decided on electric bikes as there are some tough hills particularly going up to Buje and Brtonglia.
Ralph Leech   September 2018

This is a wonderful holiday:  we loved the rides out into the hilltop villages and enjoyed stopping for a swim at the beaches we passed.  The local cuisine is excellent.  The electric bikes allowed us to attack the hills with ease and it will be hard to ever consider a 'normal' bike again!  We added a few days in Rovinj to our trip, which was a delight.  The weather (mid September) was perfect. 

Anon   September 2018

A beautiful way of experiencing the Istria peninsular - our first time in Croatia. The routes give a varied taste of the area. You can customise your routes to your ability. We were very lucky to have met some brilliant fellow cyclists on this trip but equally you can choose to be more private. The places we stayed were so friendly and again varied. Great food everywhere. It was so very hot on this holiday but the coast line is idyllic. Beaches gorgeous but rocky - need footwear to get into sea. We loved this holiday. Thank you Inntravel x

Mr J Berland  Canada September 2018

My entire contact with Inntravel from enquiry through booking and on to the tour was superb! The attention to detail couldn't have been better. The cycling route was beautiful and varied and there was plenty of advance notice about any challenging sections. All of the accommodation was comfortable and to a person the staff in all three hotels were wonderful. I can't say enough about how pleased I am with this trip.

Mrs J Wolsey  Norwich June 2018

Very enjoyable holiday, good weather most of the time, some dramatic thunder storms. Hotels very good and welcoming. Beaches lovely but stony, take suitable footwear to go swimming in the warm clear water.

Mr J Harding  Hove May 2018

Idyllic Istria is up there with our favourite Inntravel cycling holidays, great weather and managed to swim in the sea on all days but one (glad we took note to have suitable footwear). Enjoyed the hilltop villages on the 3rd day and cycling through the Lim valley the next. Highlights: evening drinks in Novigrad whilst watching the sunset and a lunchtime meal by the sea in in Rovinj. Hope Inntravel come up with another Croatia holiday.

Anon   May 2018

In Novigrad, the receptionist advised eating at “Amphora”. On the sea front - it was very good. It's also a good idea to take DEET (mosquito repellant).

Mrs A Thatcher  Chipping Norton May 2018

Konoba Buscina (Day 1) is indeed an experience not to be missed. We just had starters but they were first rate - respectively the best pasta with tomato sauce and the best seafood platter we had ever eaten.  The routes in general were good. But on Day 2 we couldn't face again riding the road from Karigador to Brtonigla via Florini which on Day 1 was horribly busy due the the roadworks north of Karigador so instead we went east out of Novigrad and on the straight gravel road up the Mirna, then to Brtonigla via Nova Vas, which was in our opinion far preferable. And you get some good views as you climb out of the Mirna valley.

In Rovinj (Day 5 or 6, from Bale) avoid the scrum in the restaurants by the old town and instead try the one in front of you just as you get to the sea front. Friendly service, very good food, and a nice view across the water to the old town. Portions in restaurants tend to be large, but we found they are completely fine with letting you share dishes and without any complaint provide extra plates, cutlery etc.

Annon   April 2018

It was a marvellous holiday so it is difficult to pick out highlights. We loved the coastline and crystal clear waters - we swam in the sea several times even though it was April and the locals don’t swim until May ( but we are British !) . We were surprised by the variety of wildlife . We have never seen so many different varieties of butterflies as we did on our cycling around Bale. We also rescued a tiny fresh water turtle from the road. We also particularly enjoyed discovering the delightful hill top towns of Buje - from where we could see the snow-capped Alps, Oprtaji and Groznjan. Our favourite day of cycling was Day 3 - wonderfully quiet lanes and stunning views from Oprtaji. It was fascinating to see how the old buildings were being restored. My lasting memory will be following a wonderful day of cycling, catching the bus from Bale to Rovinj and sitting watching the sun set eating a wonderful seafood meal away from the crowds at Maestral restaurant, Rovinj. Perfect.

We could also recommend the Menegetti wine tasting - and worth a visit just to see the place and the restaurant Alighieri (Danetov trg 3 - just off main shopping street and not far from the Forum). 

Rachel, Cardiff   April 2018

Lots of wildlife particularly around the nature reserve at Palud - a large wild boar emerging onto the cycle track from the undergrowth was a bit of a shocker! As it was the start of the asparagus season, we encountered several people foraging for wild asparagus at the roadside. The amphitheater at Pula was well worth the cycle. The small atmospheric hilltop villages were fascinating - especially the abandoned medieval ruins of Moncastello. Many layers of history in the churches, villages and fields. The quality of roads, signage and cycle infrastructure, particularly in the northern section of this trip was a delight. Throughout, we found drivers to be cycle-aware and friendly.




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