Preserving Cultural Heritage in Istria: Festivals and Events in May

Courtesy of Pixabay

The combination of a mild Mediterranean climate, beautiful shores, and green hills has attracted newcomers to this heart-shaped peninsula years back. Greeks, Romans, Histrians … All of them left thousand years’ old footprints in the Istrian ground, and today we proudly call it ‘Terra Magica’ for reason. Multiculturalism and various influences have shaped it into a rich source of fairy tales, legends, and myths – leaving to us a cultural heritage that needs to be preserved. As inspiration to many, Istria has been recorded in many stories, dances, poems, and works of art – and this May you have the opportunity to take a step back in time and experience Istrian culture through a variety of festivals.

Veli Jože Days – Festival of Giants

Motovun, 5/25-26/2018

The hilltop town of Motovun served as an inspiration to the great Croatian author Vladimir Nazor when he wrote a story about the good-hearted giant of Veli Jože, who selflessly helped his neighbors and friends. 


Courtesy of Unsplash

As an hommage to that, Motovun ogranises Veli Jože Days – a festival rich with fantasy movie projections about giants. Already famous as a movie festival destination (Motovun Film Festival), Motovun takes a step further and will host this event with 3D effects on large canvases. for a full cinematographic experience. The festival is of a true family character and during the two-day manifestation, Motovun streets will be filled with street performers, entertainers and musicians. Aside movie projections, the event will host creative workshops for children, and an old crafts fair. Those who can eat like giants will have the opportunity of trying food in xxl giants sizes. 

More info available here.

Novigrad in folklore

Novigrad, 05/26/2018

 Get to know Istrian traditional music, songs and dance on Novigrad’s main square on Saturday, May 26th. Members of the Novigrad Cultural and Art Society ‘Dajla’ will fill your night with folklore and tradition. An event that takes place last Saturday of May each year, when the Society is celebrating the anniversary of its founding, will host many other cultural and art societies that show the variety of traditional Istrian dance forms.

Pula Superiorvm – Festival of Antiquity

Pula, 5/2018

Throughout May dive into the great Roman culture on streets of Pula. The festival of antiquity will host a rich program of artistic, artistic, scientific, literary, musical and stage creations on different locations in town. The festival, aside from being an entertaining tourist attraction, also has the aim to educate citizens and guests about the great Roman valuable heritage that is preserved in Pula, and Istria.

Complete program available here.

Courtesy of Pixabay
Author: Annamaria Gržetić


Founded in 2015, our focus is on contributing to sustainable tourism development in the region of Istria, Croatia, through the work we do. Therefore we are keen on building a travel community to connect travelers with locals of Istria. Off The Beaten Path is a movement that embraces tourism development in a respectful manner while encouraging locals and travelers to involve themselves in a much meaningful way. 

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