Although once a peaceful fishing town, Novigrad has become a compelling touristic destination over the years. It is set on a small peninsula on the western coast of Istria halfway between Poreč and Umag. Even though it is growing to be more and more popular with tourists all over the world every year, Novigrad’s fishing harbour is busy with fishermen: they keep knitting their nets, washing buckets, talking and complaining. Truly, this town is still a typical quiet Mediterranean fishing town.
Things to do
Novigrad has many beaches – from very public to quite isolated rocky beaches, to sandy beaches suitable for families with small children. The Karpinjan beach stretches for five hundred metres and is one of the most popular beaches in Novigrad. Most of the beach is gravel, with a little rocky part. Equipped with everything you might need and more, this beach just 1 km from the centre is perfect for winding off on a hot summer day. Of course, there are other well-known beaches, such as Hotel Maestral, Camping Mareda, and Hotel Laguna, which is perfect for children and seniors. This summer try something new like surfing while you’re in Novigrad.
If you are an active person who finds sports relaxing, Novigrad has you covered. Modern tennis courts are placed in attractive locations throughout the town, and there are also facilities for football, volleyball, handball, and many more. So, if you want to be active, the possibilities are endless – all you need is a bit of will.
For those who love nature and want to stay in shape, horseback riding near Novigrad will surely be an experience worth remembering. Get on a horse and let your imagination wander as you pass inspiring landscapes.
Novigrad has numerous historical sites and monuments that testify to its long and rough past. Before entering the town, stop to look at its well-preserved walls which were built in the 13th century. Visit the Novigrad Lapidarium if you’re interested in ancient times and discover a collection of over 90 stone monuments. Take a look at the belvedere, the Rigo palace and its art gallery, and the Dajla castle. Those who appreciate church architecture will find their hearts taken by the beauty of the parish church of St Pelargio and St Maxim, and the St Agata church. If you want to know more about the Austro-Hungarian navy, make sure to go to Gallerion.
Novigrad offers countless festivities and events during the summer, the most famous one of them being the Cultural Summer of Novigrad. If you enjoy food more than anything else, the Gnam Gnam Festival, as well as the fishermen night and St Pelargio festivity, are the perfect fit for you. In case you want to get lost in the sounds of wondrous music, pay a visit to Novigrad Music Nights.
Water theme park
Although not in Novigrad but quite close to it, Istralandia is the biggest water theme park in Istria. Consisting of over twenty attractions, it’s a perfect place for a day-long trip. Various slides and pools make this watery experience extremely fun, and if you’re peckish, you can always go for a bite in one of many different restaurants.
Top places to eat
Novigrad is known for its exquisite cuisine. If you feel brave, try Mediterranean sashimi in the Damir & Ornella restaurant in the heart of the town. Best seafood dishes can be found in the Čok restaurant near the harbour, and the elegant Marina restaurant which offers today’s catch menus. If you fancy something quick and simple, there are many bistros, pizzerias and fast food places to choose from. No matter what you’re craving, the food is sure to make you fall in love with this fishing town.
Top places to sleep
Novigrad offers an assortment of different accommodation, such as fancy hotels, family guesthouses, and campsites.
Boasting a garden and a restaurant, Youth Hostel Pinesta is situated in Novigrad Istria, 2.1 km from St. Pelagius and St. Maximilian Church. Featuring a shared kitchen, this property also provides guests with a children’s playground. Free WiFi is available throughout the property and Novigrad Marina is 2.1 km away.More on Hostel
B & B
Located in peaceful scenic surroundings close to the city of Novigrad, Pansion Kolo is the ideal place for relaxing holidays to recharge your batteries.More on B&B
Placed right next to a beach and offering a restaurant with a terrace and sea view, Boutique Hotel Rivalmare is set in Novigrad, Istria. Guests can have a drink next to the sea, at the on-site bar. Free Wi-Fi access is offered.More on Hotel
Getting around the town
You will have no troubles getting to Novigrad – there is a number of daily buses that travel to Novigrad from Umag, Poreč, and Rovinj.
Novigrad is a small place, so there is no need for public transportation. Go on foot and discover this quaint town, and if you want to go out of town, call a taxi. You can also rent a bike or a car if you’d like.