Events in Istria

The region of Istria is very well known for its gastronomic delights. As you’ll see below, a number of the annual events in Istria are based on delicacies from the region – oils, truffles, wines, chestnuts and so on. Do also check for events listings at local tourist offices; many of these types of events aren’t all that well publicised online.

Confirmed dates of events are shown in the list below in bold. If you have or know of an event you’d like to see listed here, contact us!

Events in Istria

Events in January 2024

Christmas advent events and fairs will continue in the early part of January, so you can still enjoy some festive cheer at the start of the year.

Events in February 2024

The parade of the Pula Carnival is in February (carnival month!), although there are also related events before and after this weekend.

Events in March 2024

The Days of Asparagus start in mid-March (running through to mid-May each year); the event will see a number of participating restaurants in the region showcase special dishes featuring…asparagus!

Events in April 2024

100 Miles of Istria (4th to 7th April 2024) actually contains several events over the weekend – the 100-mile ‘Ultratrail’ endurance race; the 110km ‘Ultratrail’; and more ‘manageable’ 65km and 42km trails. Anyone can enter any of the races – if you’re brave enough! Over 1,000 competitors are expected.

The Umag Run will take place on 23rd April 2024. The event actually consists of three different races – a half marathon, a 10.5km race and a fun run the latter of which is open to all ages! Register on the website to participate.

Events in May 2024

The Rovinj Photodays photography festival takes place in early May each year.. There is a main exhibition featuring works submitted to the international photography competition, as well as other exhibitions, lectures, workshops and presentations. The event always has one main theme and then additional photography displays on the side.

Each May, the Vinistra exhibition in Porec allows wine lovers to come and sample local specialities. The exhibition also always features olive oils and brandies; over 100 exhibitors show wines, oils and spirits.

Oleum Olivarum is a two-day olive oil exhibition held near Buje each year in mid-May.

Wine Day (“Open Wine Cellars Day”) allows people to tour the wine producers of Istria, conducting tastings (and hopefully purchasing wine too, if something takes your fancy!). The event normally takes place on the last Sunday of May. Check local tourist offices for listings of participating wineries.

The intimate electro-music event Lighthouse Festival returns to Porec, taking place from 29th May to 2nd June 2024.

Events in June 2024

Dua Lipa will be bringing the bops to the Pula Arena on 9th June 2024.

The Days of Antiquity event takes place in Pula in mid-June each year, with games, music and even a fair harking back to Roman times.

“Porec Summer” will take place starting from mid-June, normally through to September. This includes a wide variety of events including music, dance and more. Check locally for up-to-date listings.

The 20th edition of the Croatian Summer Salsa Festival takes place from 10th to 17th June 2024 bringing together dancers and fans of Latin music in the beautiful setting of Rovinj. Daily workshops will teach salsa from beginner right through to advanced levels, with a range of styles of salsa and dance techniques – all taught by some of the top dance instructors in the world! In the evenings, dance events will be held in different locations that are open for everyone to participate in. Famous Latin bands, DJs and salsa artists will also perform. A great dance event in a beautiful location on Croatia’s coast!

Avril Lavigne will be performing at the Pula Arena on 17th June 2024.

Indirekt is Istria’s first indie festival, taking place in mid-June in Umag.

The Days of Jules Verne takes place in Pazin towards the end of June; the author set part of his novel Matthias Sandorf in locations in Istria, so he is celebrated with parts of the book (written in 1885) recreated in traditional costume.

Events in July 2024

Classic 80s band Simple Minds will be playing the Pula Arena on 3rd July 2024.

The Pula Film Festival will be in its 71st year in 2024, making it the oldest festival of its kind in Croatia. Held every July, Croatian and international films are shown at various locations in Pula, including in the stunning amphitheatre (the Arena) in the town.

Organised by the Zagreb Dance Company, the Dance and Non-Verbal Theatre Festival San Vincenti takes place in mid-July featuring contemporary dance performances, physical theatre, mime, circus performances, street art and educational seminars and workshops from both Croatian and international groups.

The 34th edition of the Croatia Open ATP tennis tournament takes place in mid-July in Umag. A selection of top men’s players, including some of the best Croatian players, take part. (The 2021 champion was young sensation Carlos Alcaraz!) Other fun goings-on also normally accompany the event (live music, parties and more!), making it quite an eventful tennis tournament to attend. The main stadium there is named after Croatian tennis legend Goran Ivanisevic.

Another film event in the region is the well-established and renowned Motovun Film Festival (which is on at the end of July). Although held in this small (but very pretty) hilltop town in inland Istria, the event is considered one of the premier film festivals in Croatia. A variety of features from across the world are shown, from documentaries to full-length films.

Lenny Kravitz will play the Pula Arena on 28th July 2024.

Duran Duran will also have a concert on at the Pula Arena on 30th July 2024.

Events in August 2024

The Burger Festival should take place on the Riva in Pula in late July/early August, offering over 20 different types of burgers – plus good drinks and lots of fun – from some of the local best burger chefs!

The Last Minute Open Jazz Festival is held in the small but exceedingly pretty town of Bale in early August each year.

The second Sunday in August sees Rovinj host Grisia – an open-air art show that was first held in 1967.

Slatka Istra / Sweet Istria – presenting traditional Istrian cakes – takes place in the village of Vizinada (inland from Novigrad) in mid-August.

The historic Trka na Prstenac takes place in the small town of Barban in mid-August each year. Sixteen competitors in traditional costume compete on horseback over a specially marked track to race (in 12 seconds!) towards an iron ring (a prstenac) that they must hit with a spear. This year’s event is the 49th modern edition; however, this event was first recorded as taking place in 1696.

Leron‘ is an international folklore festival that takes place over two days in Vodnjan in late August each year.

Events in September 2024

St Euphemia’s Day (Rovinj’s patron saint) is celebrated each year on 16th September. There’s usually a number of events taking place in the run-up too. Check locally to see what’s on!

The historic festival Giostra (pictured below) takes place in Porec in mid-September. There will be traditional costumes, music and games.


The Visualia Festival of Light should take place in Pula in mid-September.

The Weekend Media Festival, a regional communications event, takes place in Rovinj in September.

The FAKS International Folklore & Traditional Dance Festival should be held in Rovinj in late September.

Events in October 2024

Starting in September, though mainly taking place in October and the beginning of November, the “Day of Truffles” events are actually a succession of truffle-themed days taking place every weekend. Enjoy tasting various food and dishes flavoured with this Istrian speciality. There’s plenty of information on these events on the Zigante Tartufi Days website.

Along the paths of Rovinj delicacies in early October sees certain Rovinj restaurants offer special menus for a promotional price. Taste some amazing Istrian delicacies!

The Ginistra Festival – obviously, all about gin – should be on in Rovinj in early October.

Marunada is a festival devoted to chestnuts in October – sampling chestnut delicacies & chestnut liqueurs, collecting chestnuts…and plenty of games and sports events too! Marunada takes place in various venues, mainly near Lovran in Istria.

Teran Wine & Walk in and around Motovun covers a distance of 11.7km and is as it sounds – explore this beautiful part of inland Istria whilst also visiting local wineries on a special guided walk.

The Plava Laguna Ironman Triathlon will take place in Porec on 20th October 2024.

Tinjan in Istria is the venue of the International Prsut (Prosciutto) Fair, with around 40 exhibitors from several European countries expected to show off their products. It is usually held in mid-October.

Hum, the smallest town in the world (it’s official!) normally hosts a Brandy Festival at the end of October. The festival has tastings of brandies from Istria and other nearby regions.

Events in November 2024

The Days of New Olive Oil will be held in Vodnjan in mid-November. Exhibitors from Istria, Dalmatia and neighbouring countries will be showcasing their oils.

Porec celebrates the Feast of St Maurus, its patron saint, on 21st November each year.

Events in December 2024

The Book Fair(y) in Istria will be held in Pula in late November/early December. In case you are wondering about the unusual title; the actual title in Croatian is “San(j)am knjige u Istri” which is a slight play on words. “Sajam” means Fair whilst “sanjam” means dreaming, so “Fair of books in Istria” cleverly turns into “Dreaming of books in Istria”.

Unsurprisingly, like much of Croatia, towns across Istria will mark Christmas for most of this month with special festive events. Most common will be Christmas or Advent fairs taking place in several towns (see locally for details – or just look to see if there’s a fair taking place!). These include music, singing, kids’ events and food (of course!), with New Year’s Eve celebrations (a concert and fireworks) also likely. Check out details for what’s on in Pula at Christmas on the Pula Tourist Office website, for example, or see what’s happening in Porec at Advent Porec.