Pula bus station has three ticket offices,waiting area and cafe bar for refreshments. The bus timetable is easy to understand, example black numbers everyday, red mon to Fri, orange not Sat etc , but please check. Local buses and National and International buses use this station. Bus to Rovinj , 45 minutes, 38 kuna Bus to Kopar 05-30 am, 96 kuna.Bus to Rijeka hour and half 88 kuna. For Bus timetables on line go to autobusni kolodvor.
We left from Zadar and took A1 highway until you have to get off at the 12 mile stretch I called/and they call the surpentine road, with maybe 30 twisting sharp curves and u-turns. Then the coast road is the only way on E65 until we got to Rijeka, if you follow the coastline. Otherwise you could take A1 towards Zagreb, and then catch A6, but that is about 60 miles out of the way, and more costly. Cost per mile is 10 cents; so it does add up.
At Rijeka we got on A1 to A8 highway, and when we go to the tunnel; a charge of $6 was in store for us. That seemed outrageous for about 10 miles. A8 from there goes on/off as an unfinished 4 land highway for about 60 kilometers, and then becomes 4 lane to Pula for the last 20 kilometers,and another charge
It seems like the rational thing to do and park in the big lot on the Riva, by the Arena. Cost is 4 kuna an hour, or $12.5. That way you can avoid not finding a place and driving around for a long time. I looked into parking over by Nardoni Trg, but the traffic is heavy and finding a place there is the same cost as on the Riva. If you would be lucky, there may be a spot along the Riva on the harbor side, or you may find a spot by the Forum, where there is a park and some spaces. We found one the second day there, and that parking on Sundays is free.
Some road distances to Pula from:
- Trieste (Italy): 122 kms.
- Budapest (Hunagry): 251 kms.
- Warsaw (Poland): 1.283 kms.
- Madrid (Spain): 2.099 kms.
Checking the website, you’ll find more road distances together with the driving times and the best routes.
The cute little mini-bus in the photograph was the bus we caught from the bus station in Pula to the airport. The schedule as posted in the bus station is as follows:
Monday : no service
Tuesday - Thursday: 9.00,10.50,17.15
Friday: 9.00, 10.50
Saturday: 9.00, 10.50, 14,50, 17.15.
Sunday: no services are posted for Sunday but crosscheck with the Pula web page bus section.
Posted below are phone and web details. Phone for Brioni Pula and web for the airport and Pula bus schedules
Pula Airport is about 20 minutes west of Pula and has all the advantages of a small airport. There are no queues for baggage or check-in and you should be able to connect with the airport bus for transfers into town. BUT don't depend on the information here or in a guide book. Check the websites before you travel.
From what I could gather, flighs from Scandinavia, Ireland, UK fly in here as well as internal flights from Zagreb. The new Ryanair connection from Dublin wil mean a big increase in Irish visitors to the area. The facilities at Pula Airport are not extensive but there is every thing you need for a routine arrival or departure.
A nice feature of the airport is the artwork hanging all over the terminal. They don't just stop at paintings by local artists though and in the departure area, massive chunks of frescoes from village churches are mounted on the walls. I thought this was a nice touch in a small regional airport.
Pula is very well connected by bus to the rest of the Istrian peninsula. From Rovinj there are buses almost every hour and the journey takes just 40 minutes. The bus station, just off Ul Istarske Divizjie is about a 10 minute walk from the Arena and a good 20 minutes from the Forum.
As well as the regional buses there are long-distance and international departures from here also.
The bus to Pula Airport departs from Terminal 1 just outside the main door. Like all the towns I visited the routes and times to the different locations are clearly posted on a large board by the main entrance.
WARNING: Do not depend on information from guide books for planning itineraries in Istria or you will probaly end up with some serious problems. The information is frequently inaccurate and you need to check the websites to have any idea of current timetables and prices.
The two most commonly used bus companies in Istria are Autotrans and Brioni Pula. The links for both are posted below.
The LP guide to Croatia suggested that there were several trains between Pula and Trieste in Italy. This ONLY during weekdays. There are NO trains that run between the two cities on the weekend (and thus no train travel between Pula and Italy on the weekend). I learned this the hard way and almost got stranded in Pula. The best way to get around this is to take a bus from Pula to Rijeka, from where you can get buses into Italy.
On this drawing of the Pješčana Uvala community, the blue arrow shows where is Valsabbion Restaurant. For more details on this restaurant, look at Restaurants tip which will give the rock land mark not to miss.
On this aerial photography of Pješčana Uvala peninsula, the road from Pula arrives in the middle left, not very easy to see between the villas. Valsabbion Restaurant (look at Restaurants tip) is right to the beach around which are scattered the villas of Pješčana Uvala community.
Although it might sounds strange to you, the town of Pula isn't connected good enough with other Croatian places along the Adriatic. In fact, you cannot travel by ferry-boat from Pula to any other destination, except to Italy. The same goes for boat lines between Pula and other coastal towns in Croatia. However, there are very good boat connections, especially during the summer, between Pula and Italian places like Venice, Rimini and Trieste.
You can get to Pula by your own or rented boat. There are two big marinas in the town, one in a huge harbour of Pula (see the picture), and another in the area of Verudela called Bunarina. Both marinas are very well equiped, offering to nautic tourists everything they need.
How to get Pula:
there is an international airport in close outskirts of the town (5km)
there is direct connection to Trieste, Ljubljana and Zagreb
there are everyday connections from Trieste (Italy), Rijeka, Ljubljana (Slovenia), Zagreb, Split ....
by motorway, so called Istrian Ypsilon
only in the summer season
I do not recommend the train because the only connection from Zagreb to Pula goes through Slovenia, and it takes too much time to get Pula. The bus is more convinient.
On this drawing of the city of Premantura, the blue arrow shows where is the Fra-Kat Restaurant. For more details on that restaurant, look at Restaurants tip which will show the two landmarks not to miss, the bell tower and the church.
On this aerial photography of the Premantura peninsula, you can see the road from Pula at the bottom, arriving in Premantura city center where there are several restaurants and particularly the Fra-Kat (look at Restaurants tip).