About 90 minutes drive from Ljubljana is Piran, a Venetian seaside town in southwestern Slovenia, which was part of Italy until the end of WWII. The locals here remain bilingual even until today. The town is heavily influenced by Venetian art and architecture since it was part of the Republic of Venice for 500 years from 1283 to 1797. It was also part of the Austro-Hungarian Empire until after WWI when it was ceded to Italy. In 1954, Piran was annexed to Yugoslavia until 1975 and since 1991, it became a part of Slovenia. Piran, with its narrow alleyways and Venetian style houses, is said to be one of the best preserved historical towns in the Mediterranean. It has a significantly different feel than other places in Slovenia. There is a defensive wall that surrounds the compact town originally built to protect from Ottoman attacks. Many parts of this wall remain today and is a great place to get a birds’ eye view of Piran and the Adriatic Sea. This is where we parked ourselves for the sunset blue hour shots. If you plan to do this, you will have to first notify the caretaker so that you don’t get locked in when the gates to these walls close in the early evening. In the center of Piran is the Tartini Square named after Italian violinist Giuseppe Tartini who was born here. The square is surrounded by beautiful medieval buildings among them a pink building called the Venetian House which supposedly was built by a rich Italian merchant for his lover. There is an inscription between the two upper windows that reads “Lassa pur dir” which means “Let them talk”. On the small hill overlooking Piran is the Church of St George which is modeled after St Mark’s Cathedral in Venice. If you don’t head up to the city walls, you can still enjoy magnificent views of Piran from the bell-tower here or even just at the foot of the cathedral.
Church of St George is modeled after St Mark’s Cathedral in Venice. On top of the bell tower is a weathervane in the form of archangel St Michael.
There is a pink building on Tartini Square called the Venetian House which supposedly was built by a rich Italian merchant for his lover. There is an inscription between the two upper windows that reads “Lassa pur dir” which means “Let them talk”.
The inscription between the two upper windows of the Venetian House that reads “Lassa pur dir” which means “Let them talk”.
1st of May Square was once the administrative centre of Piran until the 13th century. In the middle of the square is a now unused stone cistern or well with two allegorical statues representing Law and Justice in the front.
We had a nice seafood dinner at Restaurant Delfin on 1st of May Square
Church of St Francis of Assisi
Many Slovenians come to Piran to spend their summers
View of Piran and Tartini Square
On the top of the bell tower of St George Church is a weathervane in the form of archangel St Michael. I was told that if St Michael is facing the city walls, then there will be good weather for the next few days and if he is facing away from the city and looking out to sea, then the weather will be bad for the next few days.
Up on the old city walls
Piran City Walls
All set up and clicking away
Tartini Square all lit up
This concludes my short stay in Slovenia. Next post will be on Sarajevo in Bosnia & Herzegovina. Stay tuned!
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