Pazin is important Istrian town but it is often overlooked by tourists which makes it on other hand quite pleasant place to visit, not yet crowded and spoiled.
Fondest memory: There are many things to do in Pazin like watching and visiting caves, walking around in the nice hilly landscape and seeing interesting old Istrian architecture and parks. It is good place to try local red wines and foods. In small pocket parks you can take your moments of quiet observing. Time passes and evening come. People come out to sit in front of their homes, children play, some will sit in terraces of few restaurants in old streets. Youngsters open bottle of beer or wine in park, watch passer by. There are old fountains and slippery pavements and some quite narrow streets. The town's cemetery lays on the steep slope at the edge of old town and it is shaped into terraces disappearing into shade and trees and deep valley. Many Italian names on the tombstones speak of past and present ethnic structure.
We went to Pazin on what seemed to be the first morning of Autumn. The sun shone just as brillliantly but there was dew on the land and a slight chill that anticipated a change of season . Once we left Kanfanar behind the landscape became much more interesting and mist-tipped hills covered with golden foliage were a huge change from the constant blue of the Adriatic. This was the first time we had seen fields, orchards and vineyards between the towns and villages we passed through. The road between Rovinj and Pula which we had travelled a few times seemed to have the most boring countryside in the whole of Istria. One long stretch of wild heath with the occasional collection of olive trees and drystone ditch. Not a house, not a person, not even a cow - just a monotonous repitiition of what had gone before. The trip to Pazin was a revelation to us and finally tallied with the description I had read of the colourful Istrian countryside. We did see sheep on this trip but my husband is still complaining that he didn't see a single cow in Croatia. Some people are never happy !
If you are staying on the coast a trip inland really gives you a different perspective on this country. The road to Pazin, shows the Istrian countryside to advantage and plenty of houses and villages that look Croatian rather than Italian. Don't miss it.
Pazin is a perfect town to visit for a flavour of life away from the coast. It bore no resemblance whatsoever to Rovinj, and beautiful as Rovinj was, I was glad to see something different. It's an important town in the sense of being the administrative capital of Istria and it's bang in the centre of the peninsula. As the bus rolled into town in a series of large loops built around the contours of the land, I knew I as going to like it. Cities are great, as are pretty resorts by the sea but it's in the ordinary towns nowhere in particular that you get a flavour of real life.
Leaving the bus station and not bothering to stop at the tourist office we just wandered in what we hoped was the right direction for the castle. This street into the centre of town was my favourite in Pazin. Huge trees made a canopy over the centre, wide footpaths were in turn fringed by trees and everything seemd overwhelmingly green and leafy. It felt a little bit like a street built in the middle of a wood. A lot of forest/ park areas on one side added to this feeling and it continued like this until we reached the spacious park and square in the centre. From here ( where the orange seller was) the streets became pedestrianised and very laidback. No traffic, no crowds but plenty of people shopping, bringing children to kindergarten or having coffee in one of the cafes. These streets continue all the way to the castle and the chasm and I was happy that before any of the 'attractions' of Pazin came into view, it had revealed itself as a really pleasant place to visit.
Favorite thing: The bell-tower is separate from the church itself, this is another characteristhic you may see on Istria peninsula.
Favorite thing: This is one of the very characteristic small and narrow street of the old core of the town. It is situated right opposite of the Castle.