Poreč’s old town juts out into the sea © Poreč Tourist Board
Poreč is home to renowned 6th-century BC mosaics in its UNESCO World Heritage Site basilica.
Poreč itself has a beautiful and quite typical Croatian coastal old town centre, jutting like a small island into the sea, and is home to renowned 6th-century BC mosaics in its UNESCO World Heritage Site basilica. Back in Roman times Poreč was the capital of Istria. Today it retains a life of its own year-round, unlike the more highly praised Rovinj, which burgeons in the summer and is deserted in the winter. Poreč life picks up as early as the end of February, when the first of the cycling enthusiasts come to take advantage of the mild weather and light traffic on Istrian roads. And while beach facilities might close in mid-October, outdoor-sports types, especially divers, will stay into early November, when the water can retain a wonderful 18°C temperature, often warmer than the outside air. Poreč’s old town is a testament to Roman military planning. Awash with souvenirs and ice cream, the side streets hide crafts and art exhibitions, sales of local rakija from house doorways, and the odd hidden café.