Opatija – Queen of Kvarner Bay

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Majestic, Victorian buildings. An opulent promenade that meanders alongside the rugged shoreline. Parks, that simply as nicely could possibly be present in Vienna. Opatija appears to be like like no different city on the Istria, and even Croatia. As soon as the popular summer season resort of the aristocrats of Austria, this enchanting seaside metropolis has a chic air to it, and invitations you to walk alongside the Lungomare for hours. Uncover with us Opatija: Queen of Kvarner Bay.

Start of a Vacationer vacation spot

It was most likely underneath a dinner round 1845 in Villa Angiolina, that Empress Maria Anna, consort to Ferdinand I of Austria, first set eyes on Opatija and received a style for the gentle local weather and majestic views of Kvarner Bay. When Emperor Franz Joseph I additionally turned enamoured with the world, Austrian the Aristocracy started to construct posh villas and majestic inns within the Victorian type.

Villa Angiolina, in-built 1844 by Rijeka patrician Iginio Scarpa and Resort Kvarner from 1884 are two stunning examples of Opatijas victorian structure, but in addition buildings like nowaday Resort Imperial from 1885 and Resort Palace Bellevue from 1889 are luxurious inns that also immediately are value their 4 stars.

Not solely inns have been constructed; additionally sanatoriums, pavilions, bathing areas, promenades and parks. As early as 1889, Opatija was declared the primary seaside climatic well being resort on the Adriatic and nonetheless immediately presents luxurious leisure and trip to its guests.

A turbulent and stunning historical past

The historical past of Opatija is, in fact, a lot older than its Austrian acme. It’s straightforward to think about that Illyrian ships have sailed the shores of Opatija again within the iron age. Like a lot of the seaside dwellings alongside the Adriatic coast, Opatija has a protracted historical past. When Illyria turned a Roman province it’s additionally straightforward to image posh Roman villas on the slopes of Opatija, taking in roughly the identical view as we do immediately. The Romans established their Castrum Laureana in nowaday Lovran, solely 6 kilometres south of Opatija and in addition Tarsatica, nowaday Rijeka, 13 kilometres to the east. Opatija has been proper between these two Roman settlements.

The cities and settlements in Kvarner Bay suffered the identical destiny underneath totally different rulers within the following centuries: Ostrogoths, Byzantines, Langobards, Croats and Franks. And because the western a part of Istria got here underneath Venetian affect, the japanese a part of Istria, from Kvarner Bay and all the way in which to the southern borders of Dalmatia, turned a part of Kingdom of Croatia from 925. When the final king died with out an inheritor, the crown handed into the arms of the Árpád dynasty, with the crowning of King Coloman of Hungary as “King of Croatia and Dalmatia” in 1102. Croatia was now, and for greater than 400 years, underneath Hungarian rule.

It was within the Center Ages that Opatija lastly got here into mentioning. Its identify is a medieval affair, stemming from the Italian Abbazia (abbey), because the small hamlet developed round San Giacomo della Preluca; a Benedictine abbey devoted to Saint Jacob, first talked about in 1453.

Following the autumn of the medieval Kingdom of Hungary, the Croatian the Aristocracy voted to change into a part of the Habsburg Empire, underneath the Austrian king Ferdinand I von Habsburg in 1527 and stayed underneath Austrian rule till the top of WWI.

High 5 sights in Opatija
  • Lungomare coastal promenade
    The 12 km promenade meanders alongside the ocean from the fishing village of Volosko, abit north of Opatija, to Lovran within the south. It’s formally referred to as Franz Joseph I Promenade and was constructed over a course of twenty-two years, ending in 1911.
  • Villa Angiolina
    The summer season villa that modified the destiny of Opatija is located within the beautiful Angiolina Park by the seaside and now – fairly appropriately – serves as Croatian Museum of Tourism.
  • Resort Kvarner
    The oldest resort on the east coast of Istria is an impressive, seafront constructing from 1884 that lights up the promenade even when it’s overcast.
  • Maiden with the Seagull
    The gracious statue within the water was created in 1956 by the artist Automotive and is a focus if you’re strolling alongside the Lungomare
  • Sea baths
    You could rely as many as 100 small stone staircases main from the Lungomare into the ocean, however the sea baths on the concrete seaside of Slatina are simply accessible and permits a dip even when the ocean is turbulent.
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