Bale Travel Guide

  • The Parish Church of Visitation
    The Parish Church of Visitation
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  • crkva sv. Duha
    crkva sv. Duha
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  • The Holy Spirit
    The Holy Spirit
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Bale Things to Do

  • Exploring the old town

    The Bronze Age excavations in the Kas locality and the ancient "castrum Vallis" are the witness to the thousands of years during which Bale and its immediate surroundings have been inhabited.In the Middle Ages the town was surrounded by the strong city walls but not much of its construction survived. Only several churches and city houses survived,...

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  • Exploring the old town

    After the town was nearly deserted it is nowadays again inhabited mostly by the people who have reconstructed this old houses into vaccational resorts. It is interesting to see the same spots snaped in 2003 and now in 2012.

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  • The Castle of Soardo-Bembo

    The kaštel (castle) was originally called Soardo after the family of the same name who built it in the 15th century. It later became the property of of the Bembo family, by marriage, so that is why it has a dual name Soardo-Bembo.Bale became the meeting place of palaeontologists in 1992, when the fossilized bones of the gigantic reptiles the...

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  • Exploring the old town

    There are inhabited and deserted houses in the town, underpasses, round streets, "portuni" (doorways), "baladur" (small covered terrace) and an occasional Venetian lion and feudal crest as a symbol of the inevitable passing of time.

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  • The Main Gate

    The city gates and very characteristic Istrian type of underpass situated next to the Castle of Soardo-Bembo.Right next to the gate there is a nice cafe-bar which offers drinks in the shadow of the medieval walls.

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  • Vaulted passage

    Instead of going down through the stair we used to come, a vaulted passage allows to leave the piazzetta and walk down to the circular street. It seems that under a high doorway was later built a smaller one as there are two vaults piled one on the other !

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  • The piazzetta

    Between the church and the campanile, the piazzetta is an island on greenery with another cypress, cedar trees and oleander. That makes a pleasant contrast with the white stone face of the houses and of the church.

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  • Saint Julian church, the campanile

    The campanile of Saint Julian church is on top of the hill, on the small piazzetta. Dark green cypresses, shaped as other campaniles, make a pleasant duplicate of the luminous stone white campanile. The campanile was built at the same time than the church, in 1880.

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  • Old well

    In the paved yard of a semi-abandoned house, there appears an old well. Grass grows so well that the paved yards would look almost like a lawn if it were trimmed ! Some have hard time growing a nice lawn, here, it grows alone between the pavements, without being watered !

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  • The piazzetta

    On the piazzetta, in front of the church, everything is very quiet and people live more outside their house than inside. There are no car, no tourists. Wouldn't you like to be there ? Discreetly, not to disturb !

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  • Stone stairs

    These stone stairs climb along Saint Julian church, and lead to the main entrance of the church, on a peaceful little piazzeta with old trees and flowers. You can also reach the piazetta by a street that turns around the church, on the right.

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  • Saint Julian church, the back

    Saint Julian (San Zuian in dialect), the parochial church, was built in 1880 on the place of a previous Romanesque church built in the 9th century. A part of the crypt has been preserved and can be visited. Inside is a sarcophagi from the 8th century and a painting attributed to Matej Poncun.

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  • Smaller passage

    Smaller passages connect the Grisa and the Kastel. The houses often spread out, people install chairs and tables right across the street and live in the street which is a place for communication between neighbors. It is very relaxing that no car can come here.

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  • Other part of the Grisa

    Most of the houses that are on the Grisa, are decorated with flowers. The plants grow either in pots or in full earth. Oleander is very common and always grow very well but various vines climb to the top of the houses.

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  • The Grisa

    The Grisa is a paved street that leads to the church. It's the name comes from the word "grisa", for "church" in the local Istrio-Romanian dialect. Amazingly, the word "grisa" is closer to the French "église" than to the Italian "chiesa" !

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Bale Local Customs

  • Water resource

    The old well - cistern, stands in the courtyard of the Caslte of Soardo-Bembo. The look of the well witnesses the nobility of the house-owner. Istrian peninsula is preety rich with water resources and almost eacg house used to have cistern in the courtyard.

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  • Washing hands

    Washing hands before entering in the house, it was a traditional custom on the coastal part of Croatia. Not much of this custom left today but when I see it I always remember my grandmother, washing-stand with fresh water stood next to the entrance of her house.

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Bale Off The Beaten Path

  • As it used to be

    Simple farners stone made houses and barns still stand but abandoned since long ago. Some people built new houses but most of them emigrated From Bale in between two WW and especially after WW II. Fact is, Bale had mostly Italian population and they left after WW II ended or around 1953.In last 15 years, however, the town of Bale is inhabited...

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  • The church of St. Jelena

    The church of St. Jelena (St. Helena) was probably built in Romanesque period. During my last visit, in August 2003, it was deserted and dilapidated, as shown on the picture. Some recent pictures, from August 2012, showing its real beauty after major restauration works.It has a unique example of two religion symbols, catholic and jewish.

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  • What is that ??

    What is that ?? I do not know, I have not the singlest idea. This figure was stuck on the basement of an electric pole. This is evidently the Mona Lisa, but why is it represented that way and what does that means, I don't know ! Anybody has a clue ?

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Bale Favorites

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  • The Town Hall

    The legally protected core of Bale represents an ensemble of buildings with elements of Venetian Gothic, inhabited and deserted houses, religious offices, city gates, underpasses, round streets, portuni (doorways), baladur (small covered terace) and an occasional Venetian lion and feudal crest as a symbol of the inevitable passing of time.Opposite...

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  • Castel Bembo

    The four storey "kastel" whose facade is decorated with two rows of Gothic mullioned windows. This castle was originally called Soardo after the family of the same name who built it in the 15th century. It later became the property of the Bembo family, so that it is why it has a dual name Soaardo-Bembo.

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Explore Deeper into Bale
Small chapel
Off The Beaten Path
Something modern !
Off The Beaten Path
The circular road (kastel)
Things to Do
Another well
Things to Do
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