Our hometown Rijeka is the third largest city in Croatia, situated on the north of Kvarner bay. It is placed exactly where Rječina River streams into the Adriatic Sea so we all call it – the city that flows.
Rijeka is different than other cities in Croatia – definitely not popular as Split or Dubrovnik. It is easy to soak up local daily life here.
What makes this city more special is its rich and unusual history. During 20th century, the city was part of 6 different countries! In some families, 4 generations of members were born in same house but in 4 different countries – Austro-Hungary, Italy, Yugoslavia and Croatia.
This year, Rijeka is European Capital of Culture so we highly recommend visiting it for a day or two. Start your Croatia road trip in Rijeka, our hometown, situated in natural and well sheltered bay in the north of Croatian coast and use the opportunity to experience this city of unique charm.
Best things to do in Rijeka:
1. Trsat Castle
Our favourite place in Rijeka with its delightful fort and recreation zones. It is situated on a slope over the city and it is best place or a cup coffee and enjoy beautiful panorama as the locals do.
2. Korzo street
Principle promenade of Rijeka and a spot loved by all local people. Each resident comes here when they feel like meeting their companions or take a walk or have an espresso. The walk on Korzo is perhaps the best activity in Rijeka and there you can feel the beat and soul of the city.
3. City Tower and Cathedral St. Vitus
Perhaps both city’s most significant structures are located on the Korzo street: the passage under the City tower associates Korzo with the beautiful Old Town.
4. Central Market
Most specific attractions of Rijeka where you can find fresh fruit, vegetables, cheese, milk, fish, meat and watch local life flowing. Don’t miss to visit Fish Hall, which gorgeous building designed with models of sea inhabitants, was built in 1916.
4. Rijeka Tunnels
Tunnels were built in 1939-1942 by Italians for military purposes. Later they were utilized as a safe house (a shelter) a few times. Recently two tunnels have been redesigned and opened for public. One of them is in the city centre and connects two ends of the city centre and is a nice escape from the summer heat. Another tunnel you can experience is more adventurous and we highly recommend this unique activity. It’s not yet open for public but we can take you there so ask us for more details.
5. Croatian National Theatre Ivan pl. Zajc
Located next to the main city market, close to the banks of the Rječina River this building shouldn’t be missed. The scenic accomplishments of Croatian drama, Italian drama, opera and ballet can be seen at the theatre today.
6. Astronomical Centre Rijeka with Planetarium
Star gazers and those passionate about space science look no further and visit this place! If you are not into stars and planets, we still recommend visiting a coffee shop on the top of the Astronomical Centre where you can enjoy one of the most wonderful views.
7. Old factories
Rijeka was industrial heart of the region at the end of the 19th and at the beginning of the 20th century.50 percent of Croatia’s industry was concentrated right here. Today, all factories are just abandoned ruins but you can still feel the old atmosphere and walk around some of them. We recommend old Paper Factory – Hartera and Torpedo Factory.
Most popular event in Rijeka, culminating in a colourful procession of thousands participants and visitors on the Sunday before Shrove Tuesday. Locals call it the ‘fifth season’, in addition to spring, summer, autumn and winter. If you are lucky enough to be in Rijeka in that time, you will have a time of your life!
9. Visit Export drvo hall
This hall will host many exhibitions, concerts and other events of the European Capital of Culture 2020 programme. Check more events here.
Rijeka is not the most famous places for beaches but you can enjoy that as well. Most famous beaches: Ploce, Villa Nora, Glavanovo, Kantrida
Recommendations for Restaurants: Konoba Brig (local specialties at affordable prices), Konoba Na Kantunu (sea food), KonobaTarsa, Konoba Nebuloza, Maslina na Zelenom Trgu (best pizza), Ristorante Spagho (best pasta), King’s caffe food pub (nice place to eat breakfast and drink beers in evening), Cacao (best cakes and ice cream),…
Because of its central/favourable geographical position, Rijeka is a perfect place to start your campervan road trip and visit Rijeka surrounding: Kastav (11km), Opatija (15km), Crikvenica (30km), National park Brijuni (100km), National park Plitvice (170km), Istria region (Pula, Rovinj, Poreč, Istralandia aqua park – 100km), Nature park Učka, National park Risnjak, island Krk (Malinska (36km), Krk (48km), Baška (66km)), island Cres (100km), island Lošinj (130km), Zadar (250km),…
More info about Rijeka, events and happening find here.