PIRAN - WHY YOU SHOULD VISIT THIS ADRIATIC TOWN
Updated: Mar 20
Scrumptious seafood, stunning sights and sunbathing
We set off on our 2 hour 15 minute journey from Lake Bohinj to our next stop on the Southwestern coast of Slovenia, Piran. We aren’t a huge fan of seaside towns and much prefer either cities or alpine resorts but the venetian architecture and italian influence in Piran really captured our attention when researching where to go in Slovenia.
We booked one night in Piran and stayed in a very unusual airbnb in an outhouse attached to a property in Portoroz, a town just outside of Piran. Our Airbnb host welcomed us with a brief overview of Piran and Portoroz and supplied us with some questionable homemade wine before showing us to our room. The room was very small but it had a bed, a toilet and a shower which was all we needed for one night.
We left to explore Piran with the sun blazing and headed down to the coast. It was refreshing to experience the contrast of a coastal resort after being surrounded by lakes and mountains for the past week or so whilst exploring Slovenia. We found a bench in the sun overlooking the Adriatic sea and sat down to eat the fruit we had taken from our hotel breakfast in Bohinj. I bit into my apple and looked down to find a worm crawling out of the core. With wide eyes, I stared at the worm before retching and running to the nearest bin to throw the apple away. I guess this served me right for taking extra food from the breakfast buffet.
We strolled along the raised promenade by the sea and I tried to control the shudders I was experiencing every time I thought about that worm. We made our way to Tartini square, the main square in Piran. You could spend hours strolling around the cobbled streets in the centre, shopping, buying souvenirs and testing out the ice cream parlours and cafes. We wandered through the square and around the harbour trying to locate the top 3 recommended restaurants we had found whilst researching - Ivo, Pri Mari and Pirat. We wanted to scour the menus to decide where to eat this evening. We knew that Piran was the place for the best fresh fish so this was the main criteria when choosing the perfect restaurant. We landed on Pirat firstly for the menu and secondly for the layout of the restaurant and made a reservation. We then wandered further along the coast and found a number of bars offering happy hour cocktails. Of course we couldn’t resist and I was desperate for an Aperol spritz.
We then set off to the monastery and St George's Church above the square. It was only 1 euro to head up the bell tower so we paid the admission and walked to the top. The tower had recently been refurbished and the wooden slats and architectural design are impressive. The views from the top of the bell tower are well worth the climb and you can look down on Tartini square, hundreds of terracotta roofs and out as far as the horizon to the Adriatic sea watching the boats sail by. We went up to the top of the tower late afternoon and it was extremely peaceful watching Piran go by from high up above.
We caught our dinner reservation at Pirat and were pleased we had booked as the restaurant was filled with other diners. We sat in an outside area covered with a canopy and were pleased to have the slight breeze coming from the sea. Despite it being after 9pm, it was still around 25 degrees. We both had seafood pasta dishes with a glass of wine and bread to start drizzled with spices and olive oil. The food was delicious and the staff were very friendly and attentive, especially considering how busy they were. A definite recommendation.
After the meal we headed into Tartini square where there was live music playing. We grabbed an ice cream from Caffe Gelateria Piran and stood watching the entertainment on stage. Above us was the most spectacular lighting storm. There wasn’t a cloud in the sky so the lightning bolts were vivid and we couldn’t stop watching. We headed back to the apartment and lay in bed with the windows open listening to the rumbling of the thunder storm.
The best things to do in Piran:
Explore Tartini Square
Visit St George's church and walk to the top for a beautiful view over Piran
Take a stroll along the promenade
Sunbathe and take a dip in the Adriatic sea
Grab an ice cream of relax with a cold drink at one of the seaside bars
Enjoy some delicious fresh fish dishes from restaurants Ivo, Pri Mari or Pirat
Next stop: Ljubljana - What to do in Slovenia's capital