Rovinj Croatia is, according to many, the nicest town in Istria, if not in the entire Croatia. The old town is situated by the sea, on a hilly peninsula, with the tower of St. Euphemia Church marking its highest point. Rovinj is very picturesque town. It is considered one of the most photogenic places.
Its colorful houses are rising from the sea. Rovinj's steep pedestrian streets are full of art galleries and lively bars and restaurants. Town's harbor is busy with small pleasure and fishing boats.
Rovinj is one of those towns where you never feel bored. Its beauty is just so inspiring, it makes you feel good just to walk its narrow cobbled streets up and down.
Contents For Travel Guide To Rovinj Croatia
- 1 Rovinj Croatia Map
- 2 Best time to visit Rovinj Croatia
- 3 Reasons to visit Rovinj Croatia
- 4 Things to do in Rovinj Croatia
- 5 What to see in Rovinj
- 6 Food and restaurants in Rovinj
- 7 Where to stay in Rovinj
- 8 Beaches in Rovinj
- 9 Bars, Clubs & Nightlife
- 10 Events in Rovinj
- 11 Traveling to Rovinj
- 12 Transport in Rovinj
- 13 Car rental in Rovinj Croatia
- 14 Parking in Rovinj
- 15 Shopping in Rovinj
- 16 Money and ATM
- 17 Internet in Rovinj
- 18 Related articles about Rovinj
Rovinj Croatia Map
Below you’ll find a map of Rovinj. You can click on the icon and read our posts about Rovinj landmarks, things to do, restaurants, etc.
Best time to visit Rovinj Croatia
Best time to visit Rovinj is spring, fall, early and late summer. Rovinj is romantic and it is nice at any time of the year. But winters could be pretty rainy, cold and lacking any activity. Summer is hot, busy and crowded. For me, the perfect time to visit is in September. There is far less people, the sea is still warm, accommodation prices are more affordable.
Reasons to visit Rovinj Croatia
There are places you simply need to see in your life, and for us Rovinj is one of those places. The only way to really understand it is to experience it.
The old town evokes nostalgia, and it's absolutely romantic. You'll have lots of photo moments while exploring it.
While the old town is romantic, and it gives you a immediate sense of dolce vita, Rovinj's hotels are urban and cosmopolitan.
Experience top-notch design of hotel Lone, luxury of Monte Mulini, and artistic scene at the hotel Adriatic. Seriously, these hotels are worth a visit to the town. And we don't ever recommend visiting any town for its hotels.
Out of all coastal towns in Istria, Rovinj has the best choice of restaurants. They don't only prepare yummy food, but they offer a stunning setting.
Whether you decide to taste sublime cuisine of Monte, dine al fresco while enjoying wonderful views at Puntulina, feel like royalty dining at the Castle Lanterna, or indulge in tasty creations of Barba Danilo, you simply can't go wrong with restaurants in Rovinj.
OK, peeps, you won't find miles long sandy beach here. But if you were looking for them, you wouldn't come to Croatia in the first place.
Rovinj has wonderful rocky, and pebbly beaches; going south from the famed Lone Bay beach, through beaches of Golden Cape forest, across Punta Eva, all the way to neighboring Bale, you can enjoy many lovely beaches.
At many beaches in Rovinj you you are permitted to swim nude.
Things to do in Rovinj Croatia
Rock climbing at Punta Corrente forest park
A wonderful forest park, Punta Corrente is located just 15-minute walk from the old town. Today it provides relaxation, but it's also popular cycling, jogging, and swimming spot. This park was constructed between 1890 and 1910.
The rock climbing site is made of sharp and hard limestone rocks. It stands only 20 m from the sea, in a former quarry. Routes are bolt-fixed, and suitable for beginners.
A local agency, Adistra, offers guided climbing with all equipment provided. A tour lasts 4-6 hours, and costs 450 kn per person.
Adistra | m: +385 95 838 3797 | e: email@example.com | Website
Romantic batana ride
OK, I promise not to use a word romantic, or lovely, any more in this post.
Batana is a traditional small fishing boat from Rovinj. It's a 4.5-8 m long wooden boat with flat bottom, and a sail. Today, very few people go fishing in batana. Instead, people of Rovinj try to preserve batana, as a true symbol of Rovinj.
In such an effort, few years ago local museum House of Batana, started offering a program to visitors that includes a ride in a traditional batana around Rovinj's old town at dawn, and a traditional dinner in Rovinj's spacio (tavern in a local dialect).
It's a nice experience, and we highly recommend it.
House of Batana | t: +385 52 812 593 | Website
Scuba diving is a popular activity in Rovinj due to many shipwrecks in waters around Rovinj. The most popular shipwreck, the Baron Gautsch, is perfectly preserved and the most visited shipwreck in all Croatia. This steamer sunk in 1914. Today it wreck lies at depths of 28-40 m, 12,5 NM off the coast of Rovinj.
Many local diving centers offer organized dives on the Baron Gautsch site. A single dive with a boat trip costs 60 € per person.
Diving Center Puffer | m: +385 95 902 55 43 | Website
Explore the old town
Rovinj's old town lies on a small peninsula, with houses tightly lined one to another, and some of them rising directly from the sea. The town is charming, and full of hidden gems at every corner.
Cobbled streets lead up to the church of St. Eufemija, standing at the top of the hilly peninsula. Enjoy the views from the bell tower, Venetian-style architecture, artsy vibe, quaint little shops, and different alleys to wander.
Read more: Our full post on things to do in Rovinj.
What to see in Rovinj
Rovinj's most popular street, La Grisia is hard to miss. The widest of all cobbled streets leading up to the church of St. Euphemia, La Grisia is full of art, jewelry, and souvenir shops, as well as a couple of restaurants.
The church of St. Eufemija
A church like church, someone might say, but hey, at least Rovinj's patron saint, St. Eufemija, or Fuma as locals call her, has an interesting legend to tell.
Eufemija lived in Chalcedon, in Asia Minor, and was a devoted Christian. At the age of 15 she was captured, and after she didn't want to give up Christianity, thrown to lions who eventually killed her but never devour her body. Long story short, as martyr, her body was preserved and eventually sarcophagus was kept in Constantinople until 800. The legend say that same sarcophagus with remains of St. Eufemija floated on the seas all the way until Rovinj where a small boy with a help of his two cows managed to get the sarcophagus up the hill.
Sarcophagus is on display behind the main altar. St. Eufemija's Day is on 16th of September.
A church's bell tower is an exact replica of St. Marco in Venice, but it's smaller. You can climb the bell tower, and enjoy awesome views of Rovinj and the sea from the top.
Rovinj's old town is a little gem waiting to be explored. It's located on a small, hilly peninsula, full of narrow cobbled streets, Venetian-style houses, interesting courtyards, art galleris, cozy restaurants, and buzzing bars.
A small museum devoted to preserve traditions of Rovinj is located in the old town. The name of the museum comes from a traditional wooden fishing boat typical for Rovinj.
Punta Corrente Forest
Punta Corrente is a protected forest park, located just 15-minute walk from the old town. Set on a small peninsula, Punta Corrente offers many walking and jogging trails, rock climbing site, wonderful emerald sea and small pebbly and rocky beaches.
Food and restaurants in Rovinj
I love eating out in Rovinj. Town has lots of great restaurants, many of them offering tasty seafood dishes. The only negative part is that most of restaurants close for winter (November through March).
Some of our favorite restaurants in Rovinj include Barbar Danilo, serving yummy and creative seafood dishes; Lanterna, classy restaurant with a great outdoor sitting on the St. Andrew Island; a fine dining restaurant Monte offering multiple course tasting menus; no-frills restaurant Orca with their hearty dishes; and many more.
Where to stay in Rovinj
Rovinj offers variety of accommodation to its visitors: from urban and hip hotels, cozy vacation rentals, to campsites. Accommodation in Rovinj is generally more expensive when compared with accommodation in other Istrian coastal towns. The difference you pay for staying at the pretties town in Istria.
Located at Rovinj's main square, overlooking town's fishing harbor, hotel Adriatic is THE place to stay in Rovinj. Artsy and hip, Adriatic features 18 rooms and suites, gorgeous brasserie, and a bar. The hotel was renovated in 2015. More info …
Island Hotel Katarina
One of very few 3star properties in Rovinj, hotel Katarina is located on the island of the same name, just 5 minute boat ride from the old town. Hotel features 120 rooms in main and annex building, outdoor swimming pool, and a lovely sunset bar. More info …
The best design hotel in all Croatia, Lone simply makes you feel good (and cool!). All major Croatian designers left their markat Lone. The hotel features 248 rooms (some with a privatehot tub at the balcony), awesome wellness center with an indoor pool, large outdoor pool, and a lovely pebbly beach. Sushi is on Fridays, peeps! More info …
Read more: A list of recommended accommodation in Rovinj.
Beaches in Rovinj
Rovinj actually has very decent beaches for Istria (Istria is generally not famed for its beaches). Beware that many of beaches in Rovinj are clothing optional.
Lovely seafront promenade stretches south of the old town, from the hotel Park, along the Lone Bay, to the Punta Corrente forest park. Here you'll find three beaches: town beach, Mulini beach Club, and Lone Beach. The last two are open to public (like all beaches in Croatia), but deck chairs are reserved for hotel guests, while general public pays a lot to use them.
The Punta Corrente forest park hides lots of small coves, and pebbly beaches, as well as rocky coast.
Further south, you'll find Villas Rubin resort beaches, campsite Polari with its lovely Punta Eva peninsula (clothing optional area), Vestar and Kuvi (the southern you go, the less crowded it gets).
North of the old town, popular beaches are within Valdaliso, Amarin, and Valalta resorts. Here you'll also find Punta Kriza, the naughtiest beach in all Istria (we'll not talk about that).
Bars, Clubs & Nightlife
Rovinj is famed for many things, but nightlife isn't one of them. You'll find lots of cafes, wine and cocktail bars, perfect spots to for a pre or after dinner drink, but not intensive clubing scene or nightlife.
Wine Bar Tomasso
Our favorite wine bar in Rovinj, you'll find San Tomasso right at the seafront with views over a fishing harbor, and the old town. A good place to taste wines from local wine producers of Rovinj region, including their own San Tomasso brand.
Beach Bar Mandrac
Located at the St. Catherine Island, the beach bar Mandrac is a superb place to chill out with awesome views over the old town.
Valentino Cocktail Bar
A popular bar in the old town, Valentino is famed for two things: awesome location by the sea, and expensive drinks. We don't say to go there everyday, but we do think you should go there once to sip a drink while cooling your feet in the sea.
Located just next to Valentino, Mediteraneo is the “new Valentino” just with friendlier service, and cheaper drinks (not cheap, just cheaper).
Circolo is a cocktail bar located at a small square, just off Carerra Street, the main shopping street in Rovinj. It has a lovely outdoor terrace.
Read more: A full post on bars, clubs and nightlife in Rovinj.
Events in Rovinj
Every year Rovinj hosts a couple of events worth attending.
Last weekend in February every year, sperarfishing enthusiasts gather in Rovinj for a day of spearfishing. Very few visitors attend this event, but locals love it. All fish caught is prepared for visitors of Rovinj, and offered free of charge.
Summer Sensual Days, and Salsa Festival
For ten consecutive years, Salsa Festival takes place in Rovinj in mid-June for two weeks. Dancers from all over the world take over Rovinj's streets, squares, popular resorts, and bars. The series of events include pool, beach, and boat parties, workshops and salsa classes, competitions, and more.
St. Lawerence Night
St. Lawerence night, celebrated on 10th of August, is famed for shooting stars activity, also known as a “rain of meteors”, or “tears of St. Lawerence”. Rovinj celebrates this activity every year on Saturday closest to 10th of August.
All public lights are off, and instead town is lighted with torches, and candles. Local establishments do the same. A series of concerts take place on multiple locations in the old town.
St. Eufemija Day
Rovinj's patron saint, St. Eufemija, is celebrated on 16th of September. The series of events include an important mass, and concerts on town's square. Restaurants prepare traditional dish, that people of Rovinj eat at their home on this day, sour kraut with sheep meat.
Read more: A full post on events in Rovinj.
Traveling to Rovinj
You can travel to Rovinj by bus, plane, car, and during tourist season even by boat.
The closest airport to Rovinj is Pula Airport. A small, seasonal airport, serves as a gateway to Istria during tourist season (May to October). A couple of low-cost airlines connects Pula with a handful of European destinations, like Berlin, Frankfurt, Hamburg, Koeln, Bruxelles, Oslo, Stockholm, Helsinki, Rome, London, Leeds, Manchester. Airlines flying into Pula airport include Germanwings, Norwegian, Ryanair, Jet2, and Vueling.
You can also fly into Krk, Trieste, Treviso, Venice, Ljubljana and Zagreb airports. They are all up to three hours drive from Rovinj. From there you can either take a bus or rent a car. If you decide to rent a car in Italy or Slovenia you don't need an extra insurance for Croatia. But you'll need to return it to Italy or Slovenia.
Pula Airport is 50 km away from Rovinj. Brioni – Fils company operates a shuttle service. A one-way ticket costs 150 kn (extremely expensive). Consider taking a shuttle from Pula Airport to Pula main bus station (30 kn); and then catch a regular bus line to Rovinj (additional 35 to 45 kn). Autotrans has a good online booking where you can also check bus schedules.
Travelling by car is by far the most convenient way to reach Istria. Roads in Istria are excellent. Istrian motorway, called Istrian Ypsilon (it’s shaped as a letter Y), is a modern and fast road, connecting Istria with a Slovenian border, and also with Rijeka to the southeast.
From Slovenia to Pula, and to Pazin, this is a multi lane road; but from Pazin to Rijeka (Ucka) it’s a double-lane road (one lane for each direction). Road tolls apply on Istrian Ypsilon.
It’s easy to reach Istria by bus, from Pula, Zagreb, Rijeka, and Trieste. Buses depart throughout the day, and more frequently during the summer.
A one-way bus ticket from Pula to Rovinj costs 35 to 45 kn; from Zagreb to Rovinj costs 150 kn kn per person; from Rijeka to Rovinj 110 kn; and ?? kn from Trieste to Rovinj Croatia.
The most popular bus companies are Autotrans, and Brioni – Fils.
Rovinj bus station is located at the center of town, just 200 m away from the old town. It's really small, with only a single stop for all buses. It gets jamed often.
Venezia lines operates a hydroboat between Venice and Rovinj, from end of April until the begining of October. Starting in May, the boat departs three times a week, and in July and August, daily except on Wednesday.
A one-way ticket costs 85? € per person. More info at Venezia Lines website.
Trieste lines operates a passenger boat between Trieste and Rovinj daily (except on Wednesday) from end of June to September. A return ticket costs around 40€. More info at Trieste Lines website.
Transport in Rovinj
Rovinj is a small town that can easily be explored on foot. The old town, located on a small peninsula is a car-free zone. If you decide to stay in old town, double check with a front office if they provide a parking at the nearby parking lots, and a free transfer to the hotel. Old town hotels usually help you reach a hotel with their golf carts.
Holiday resorts, located north and south of the old town, like Amarin or Villas Rubin, offer for an extra charge, shuttle buses, and boat line to and from the old town. Boats connect St. Catherine and Red Island with the old town. They depart hourly throughout the day.
If you stay outside the old town, you can also reach it by bicycle. Rovinj is mostly flat and easy to navigate by bicycle. However, once you reach the old town, you'll need to park your bike, as the old town can't be explored by bicycle due to its location on a hilly peninsula full of stairs.
Taxis in Rovinj are expensive.
Car rental in Rovinj Croatia
There are lots of car rental agencies in Rovinj. Rentalcars.com is a good starting point to check car rental offer and prices of different car rental companies. The website offers excellent choice of cars to rent in Rovinj. Please, keep in mind, that cars rent quickly for the high season (July, August), and the prices go up as the season approaches. Book your car rental as early as possible to secure the best deal.
However, if you prefer to rent a car directly through a local company, below you'll find contacts for few local car rental agencies.
1 | Oryx
Oryx is the largest Croatian car rental company with offices all around Croatia.
Contacts | a: Šetalište vijeća Europe bb, Rovinj | t: +385 52 814 259 | e: firstname.lastname@example.org | Website
Working hours | Mon-Fri: 8 am-8 pm | Sat: 8 am-2 pm | Sun: 8 am-noon
2 | Vetura
Vetura is a local Istrian car rental company with offices in all major Istrian towns.
Central Office Contacts | a: Šetalište vijeća Europe bb, Rovinj | t: +385 52 815 209 | m: +385 91 730 44 08 | e: email@example.com | Website
Working hours | Daily, 8 am-9 pm
3 | Uni-rent
A national car rental company with offices in 12 ocations throughout Croatia, including Rovinj.
Contacts | a: Ante Starčevića 35, Rovinj | t: +385 52 841 040 | e: firstname.lastname@example.org | Website
Working hours | Mon-Sat: 8 am-8pm | Sun: 8 am-noon
Parking in Rovinj
Rovinj's old town is a car-free place, only accessible by foot. Rovinj has two designated parking lots close to the old town, and street parking as well. North of the old town, you'll find Valdibora, the largest parking lot in Rovinj. It's also the closest parking to the old town. Rovinj's old town is located on a car free peninsula. Thus, the only way to explore it on foot. The good thing is that the town is small and basically very easy to walk through. Valdibora is a big parking, located just north of the old town, a 5-minute walk from the center.
Prices per hour | mid-Oct-March: 2 kn | Apr.-June, Sept.-mid-Oct.: 5 kn | | July, 1-July, 15: 6 kn | mid-July-Aug.: 6,5 kn
You can also park your car on the designated areas in the streets of Rovinj. Street parking is divided into zones 1 to 4; zone 1 being the closest to the old town. Parking in the zone 1 is limited to maximum of three hours at once.
- Zone 1 | year around: 6 kn
- Zone 2 | mid-Oct.-Apr.: 2 kn | May-mid-Oct.: 5 kn
- Zone 3 | mid-Oct.-Apr.: 2 kn | May-mid-Oct.: 5 kn
- Zone 4 | mid-Oct.-Apr. free | May-mid-Oct. 2 kn
Shopping in Rovinj
Don't expect to find large shopping malls in Rovinj, or high end brands. You'll rather find small, artisan shops selling handmade jewelry, interesting clothes, artworks, and souvenirs.
Large supermarkets are located at the entrance of the town, on a road to Bale. In fact, you'll find here all large supermarkets – Konzum, Lidl, and Plodine; Jysk, a Danish retail store selling household goods; DM, a drugstore selling toiletries, and alike.
Rovinj's green and fish market is located at the northern part of the old town, not far from the Valdibora parking area. Here you'll find fresh fruits and veggies, as well as a ctach of the day at the fish market. However, there are few other spots in ton where locals buy fresh veggies. Near Konzum there is a local lady selling her own produce during the summer onths. Also, family Dobravac, sells their own produce in front of their family home just above the Mirna factory, few minutes walk from the old town.
Interesting souvenirs, paintings, jewelry and bags, you can get at few stores in town, like Koza, a store offering hand made leather goods; Prostor, a concept store located in the hotel Lone, offers cute and quirky stuff made by Croatian designers; Parfumes of Rovinj, indeed, offers an original scents of Rovinj through their perfumes, body, bath, and home products.
Money and ATM
Croatian currency is Kuna, although some things you can pay in Euro, like meals in restaurants, accommodation, pay tolls, and gas. The exchange rate is around 7,6 kn for 1 euro. You can exchange money at many places in Rovinj: exchange offices, banks, hotel receptions.
ATM machines are also very everywhere; near every bank, at prominent places in town, and at many hotels. ATM machines have an option for different languages, so they are easy to operate.
Internet in Rovinj
There are free WiFi hot spots throughout the town. Many bars and restaurants also offer free WiFi. However, you’ll need to ask for a password in order to connect. Private accommodations come with free WiFi, as well as 4 and 5-star hotels.
Other Rovinj hotels seem to be lagging behind when it comes to free WiFi internet connection. Most of them still charge for it, and they charge a fortune. As from 2016 not only majority of Rovinj hotels will offer a free wifi, but also majority of Rovinj campsites (like Polari, and Vestar).
Related articles about Rovinj
- Things to do in Rovinj
- Best restaurants in Rovinj
- Events in Rovinj
- Nightlife, bars & clubs in Rovinj
- Where to stay in Rovinj
- A quick travel guide to Rovinj for couples
We hope our travel guide to Rovinj Croatia helps you better plan your holidays in this charming Istrian coastal town. If you have any comments, suggestions, or questions, please leave them below.