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Culture

Istrian hilltop towns

Perched on a hilltop, these picturesque towns witness the turbulent Istrian history woven from battles and celebrations. Their magic aura will enchant everyone who steps on their narrow streets and take them briefly into some other times. Stunning panoramic views from their hilltops make them attractive destinations during all seasons.

motovun
Motovun-Montona (277 m)

A monumental city, founded on the top of a hill with an altitude of 277 meters above sea level, represents the authentic image of a medieval Istrian town surrounded by fortified walls. The view from the walls shows expansive vineyards and the forest of Motovun, famous for its truffle abundance. From the town’s entrance gate and the loggia to the main square, St Stephen’s church with the belfry tower, and the paved streets, Motovun is rightfully considered one of the most beautiful towns in Istria.

Zavrsje
Završje-Piemonte d’Istria (240 m)

If you find yourself on the road to Završje, you will be welcomed by a breathtaking view. Perched on a cliff, this medieval town lies above the Mirna Valley. On the other side of the river, you can also see the town of Motovun. This is where local stories and legends come to life: fortified towns, life in Mirna Valley, trade of local goods, and the mystical aura of Motovun forest.

Oprtalj
Oprtalj-Portole (378 m)

Preserved original architecture from medieval times, narrow streets, charming local shops, beautiful Venetian palaces, gates, and passages make Oprtalj an authentic gem of Istrian inland that is worth to be visited. Many say the unique panoramic view from the town loggia in Oprtalj is the most beautiful scenery in Istria!

Zminj
Žminj-Gimino (379 m)

The town of Žminj was also built on a hilltop, in the center of the heart-shaped Istrian peninsula, between the east and west coast, between Raša valley and Lim bay, where it seems as if the eastern and western seas are trying to meet. Ancient inhabitants fortified their settlement here, and the castle bears witness to life as it once was.

Hum
Hum-Colmo (331 m)

Situated on a hilltop just above the source of the Mirna river, you will find another medieval town. Here in Hum, you already feel welcomed once you see the town entrance gate, where the following words are inscribed in stone: “Come visit this small town where even the stone walls will give you a warm welcome.” The passage through the double gate, built in the 12 century, but preserved since 1562, leads you towards the town square of Hum, known as the smallest town in the world. All the important town establishments are located here: the Municipal loggia, the residential houses for the noblemen and the locals, and a parish church with a residency for the prefect.

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