352: Bike route The Big Blue
Wherever you go, you can see the blue; you are either on it, beside it or perceive it in the distance. And never forget: you are riding along one of the most beautiful coasts on the Mediterranean.
Our starting point is the Medulin seafront where most of the restaurants, bars, patisseries and souvenir shops are situated. Our ride begins in one of the most beautiful and biggest campsites in Croatia. Passing by Pomer and Vinkuran we arrive to the Veruda marina. We come across the restaurant Volaria where, in a cosy environment by the sea, you can enjoy in a rich offer of pizzas, pastas and other specialties. Across Pješčana uvala we come to Cave Romane, the oldest quarry in Istria that was used during the Antiquity period. Out of stone blocks from this quarry, some of the most beautiful constructions were built – the most famous of all – the Arena. Monumental stone views are equally attractive today as they were in old times.
We continue towards Banjole, a place whose inhabitants were always mosly fishermen. The reason for our stop is one of the best fish restaurants in Croatia, Batelina, whose owner is a fisherman, too. The restaurant offers delicious fresh fish dishes and has become a cult place of the Istrian gastronomic scene.
Our next stop is Premantura. At the entrance to Premantura, we turn right towards Kamenjak, the amazing oasis of intact nature. Its numerous picturesque bays and beaches are equally attractive throughout the year. The whole way through Kamenjak, we enjoy beautiful views and Mediterranean herbs scent following us. Lonely Planet has included its beaches among 10 most beautiful on the Mediterranean. If you have a good mountain bike, you can follow bike marks on the trail and make a tour by the sea. There is an unusual, unreal bar made out of natural materials, mostly driftwood the sea brought to the coast at the park’s most southern peak- the Safari bar. Be sure to stop for a moment here and enjoy the beautiful views and magical peace. If you happen to be at Kamenjak in the right moment, you will be able to see the orchids. Around 30 species grow here and they are all protected.
We then pass through the center of Premantura, by the famous fish restaurant Fra & Kat. On our way back we pass by a place where once used to be a pond and come to Pomer to find another good restaurant – Bocaporta. Through Mukalba we ride back to Medulin, but we will stop at Vižula – a peninsula in the middle of Medulin bay which expands on 24 hectares. During their research archaeologists found remains of a Roman residential villa, called the Crispo villa, which even today impresses with the remains of walls situated directly on the coast. We return to the Medulin seafront, the place we dived into the big blue from.