Our spring break in 2014 took us down to Pula, Croatia. Beautiful, Mediterranean, Croatia. Why? Here's why. This is a shot off of the balcony of the house we rented.
Not too shabby, if I say so myself.
And also because Ryan Air had flights from the Frankfurt Hahn airport to Pula, Croatia leaving and returning on Fridays. It matched up with our time schedule too. I bet most of you haven't heard of Pula. Let me tell you a little bit about it.
Pula is on of the last towns on the Istria peninsula of Croatia. Actually, it's not the last town. Premantura is. The town we stayed in. In fact, we stayed in the second to last house in the last town on the peninsula. Ocean on both sides. It was pretty awesome.
So what is Pula known for?
Mostly this, the Pula Arena. It is one the six remaining large Roman arenas in existance and the most well preserved. Pretty cool.
Pretty cool place for pictures, too.
It's is also a good place to act like a fierce gladiator. Andre's siblings were at first thinking he was a little silly, but then...
Raising your arms in triumphant victory seems to be contagious.
After acting like gladiators, we decided to take a walk around town.
We saw things like this. This is the Porta Gemina which is part of the old city walls dating from around 150 AD.
We also saw things like this. Large estates with a very Italian feel to them.
We also saw places of obvious neglect and destruction. Pula has been traded around a lot. It started as part of the Roman Empire, then was ruled by the Ostrogoths (whoever that is), then it was part of the Byzantine Empire, then Venice took their turn ruling it, then Napoleon and France had a go at Pula and being in charge, then the Habsburgs of Austria ruled, then Italy, then it was restored to Austria, then back to Italy. Next came some really fun times when it was part of Yugoslavia. Finally, in 1991, the country of Croatia was formed and Pula was ruled by Croatia. Whew!
With all that attacking and changing hands you would think Pula would have a large defense system. Well, they do. Or at least they did. These canons look pretty old. Here are my kidlets along with our friends, the Chocolate Family's kids, sitting on canons, defending Pula.
There wasn't too much to see at the fort. Mostly because they charge a lot to go in and look around. So we stayed outside.
Something that they didn't charge for was the Temple of Augustus, a Roman temple dating from 14 AD. Of course, they were doing a little reconstruction on it, but it was still really neat to stand on the steps of a 2,000 year old building.
After a long and satisfying day of visiting Roman ruins and riding canons like a horse, it was time to get back. This is the city of Medulin, Croatia which was across the bay from Premantura. We could hear the bells from the twin bell towers ring out across the water, signaling the end of the day. Until tomorrow, Croatia.