Piran

Located just a few kilometres from the Croatian border, Piran is a Slovenian town with a wonderful historical and architectural heritage.
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Cosmopolitan, lively and picturesque, the town of Piran is a destination in Slovenia that is definitely worth a visit. If you find yourself in Croatia in the region of Istria, the advice is to also pop over to Slovenia to be won over by Piran’s beautiful scenery and to relax on its beautiful beaches. Situated on a rocky promontory along the coast of the Adriatic Sea, Piran is a real gem to be discovered on foot in order to fully appreciate its historical and architectural heritage.

According to an ancient legend, Piran was founded by citizens of Aquileia who emigrated from their city after it was destroyed by Attila, King of the Huns. What is actually known about Piran is that it has a very ancient history, so much so that it was known since the time of the ancient Greeks. After having been part of the Roman Empire along with the territories of Istria, Piran suffered under the rule of the Ostrogoths and Lombards.

In the 13th century, however, the town came under the influence of the Venetian Republic and became its protectorate. The Serenissima contributed decisively to boosting the economy of these territories and the commercial activity of this area was long linked to the presence of salt pans . Even today, salt extraction is still carried out in the Sečovlje Salina Nature Park using methods that are hundreds of years old.

At the end of the 18th century, however, the decline of Venice meant that Piran came under Austrian rule, and in the following years the lively hamlet of Portorož became one of the Austrians’ favourite seaside resorts. In the 20th century Piran was first a territory of the Kingdom of Italy and then a territory of Yugoslavia until Slovenia declared independence.

Now Piran is a popular destination that is famous not only for its history but also for its beautiful beaches and for being a top spa resort. For hundreds of years, Piran’s waters have been known to be rich in minerals and to have many beneficial properties.

Things to do in Piran

If you are planning a trip to Croatia by car, the advice is to include Piran as a stop on your itinerary. An ideal destination for a relaxing weekend or a day trip, Piran is a town characterised by a maze of narrow streets and alleyways, which are very pleasant to walk through, and by a seafront promenade offering truly wonderful views.

Tartini Square

The heart of Piran is definitely Tartini Square, which is named after the famous violinist Giuseppe Tartini (1692-1770). The elliptical-shaped square has a statue of the violinist in the centre, while all around it are elegant buildings, bars and restaurants. In addition to the Town Hall and St Peter’s Church, here you can also admire the famous Venetian House, a Gothic-Venetian-style building on which the inscription ‘Lassa pur dir’, or ‘Let them say’, appears.

According to one legend, the house belonged to a rich Venetian merchant who had a love affair with a local girl. However, this affair was gossiped about by many citizens and the young woman resented it. The merchant, however, did not want the girl to be offended by this gossip so he had the inscription carved into the façade of the palace.

Walls of Piran

The town is surrounded by walls that have survived to this day in perfect condition. The walls, which date back to the Middle Ages, were extended several times as the size of the town grew. The best-preserved remains of the walls are located on the Mogorone hill, from where there is a beautiful view of the town of Piran and the surrounding areas.

Entrance to the town was possible through seven gates. One of the most beautiful gates is said to be Delfin Gate, which was built in the Gothic style in the 15th century by the podestà Delfin and features a coat of arms consisting of three dolphins.

Piran waterfront

Ideal for a romantic sunset stroll or an after-dinner stroll, Piran’s waterfront is home to the harbour where small fishing boats as well as tourist boats can be found. The promenade is one of the gateways to the town and leads all the way to Tartini Square.

As you walk along it, you will notice that the closer you get to the town centre, the more the seaside ambience gives way to historical palaces and old buildings. In the evening, the promenade is a lively area, enlivened by the presence of clubs and restaurants where you can sample excellent local cuisine.

Church of St George

Built in the 14th century, the Church of St George was later rebuilt in the 17th century and is now a Renaissance Baroque building. The church is located on a hill overlooking Piran from above and is therefore visible from all parts of the town. The religious building is named after St George, the patron saint of the town, who is said to have saved Piran during a heavy storm.

Looking at St George’s Church, you will notice clear signs of Venetian rule, as the church’s bell tower is very similar to that of St Mark’s Basilica. Approximately 47 metres high, the bell tower can be visited and after climbing 146 steps you can enjoy a magnificent view from up there.

1 May Square (trg 1 Maja)

If you walk through the maze of narrow streets that characterise the historical centre of the city, you will surely arrive at 1 May Square, which was considered the centre of the city during the medieval period. Also known as Old Square, 1 May Square houses a large white cistern that was built at the end of the 18th century following a period of drought.

This structure allowed for the collection of rainwater that was purified in case of need and then pumped to the surface.

Portorož

If you want to carve out a few moments of relaxation on the beach, you can head to the village of Portorož, a popular Slovenian seaside resort.

The main beach in Portorož is a very popular shoreline thanks to the presence of excellent facilities, restaurants, clubs, but also beach volleyball courts and children’s play areas. The beach is made up of sandy and grassy areas, while the sea water is so clear that it has been awarded the Blue Flag several times.

Where to stay in Piran

Piran is a popular tourist destination, so the town has numerous types of accommodation to meet the diverse needs of its visitors. If you want to fully experience the atmosphere of old Piran, you can stay at one of the establishments in the old town centre.

Alternatively, for a quieter stay, the hamlets of Piran offer more secluded accommodation suitable for a truly relaxing stay. Those who prefer to go to the sea can choose one of the facilities in the Portorož area.

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How to get to Piran

Piran is easily accessible from Croatia by public transport or car. From Umag you can reach Piran by car by first taking the E751, then the D200 and finally the S111. Those coming from Italy can drive first along the SS202 and then along the S111. Alternatively, it is possible to drive along the A1 and then Route 111. From Ljubljana, on the other hand, you can reach Piran by driving first along the A1, then along the H5 and finally along Route 111.

The small airport of Portorož is 10 km from the city centre, while the international airport in Trieste is about 80 km away and the one in Ljubljana 140 km away. From Trieste it is possible to reach Piran by bus lines that connect the two cities within an hour; alternatively, it is also possible to rent a car or take a taxi.

Those who want to travel by train can reach the Trieste or Koper train station and then once there reach Piran by public transport or taxi. The journey from Koper to Piran by bus takes about 50 minutes.

Piran Weather

What's the weather at Piran? Below are the temperatures and the weather forecast at Piran for the next few days.

Monday 15
15°
25°
Tuesday 16
10°
21°
Wednesday 17
10°
14°
Thursday 18
10°
16°
Friday 19
11°
Saturday 20
15°

Where is located Piran

Piran is a town in Slovenia on the Adriatic Sea, 22 km from Umag, 37 km from Trieste and 120 km from Ljubljana.

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