National Park Brijuni
Brijuni achipelago, consisting of 14 islands, is one the most known and visited Croatian national parks. Located just a short way off the Istrian coast, they are one of the few places in the world that hold so many fascinating things to see, on such a small area. Historic monuments, buildings and dinosaur remains, incredible animal and plant variety along with stunning scenery of beaches and forests, make it a place you do surely wish to visit and experience.
Often referred to as the Croatian safari, Brijuni are home to over 700 plant and 250 bird species, transforming the islands into a colorful, dreamlike garden overlooking the sea, garden of Eden. Many exotic animals, such as zebras and elephants, who freely roam the islands, were brought to Brijuni many decades ago, and thanks to the excellent micro-climate, have adapted to the area very well, making it even more interesting to see.
Not only is the land beautiful, but the beauty goes on, under the surface of the sea, where Brijuni hide some of the most beautiful seafloor landscapes in the Adriatic, and equally as lively sealife.
Brijuni are a timeline connecting the past and present. Bones of primeval dinosaurs stand witness to milleniums that passed, watching ancinent Illirs, Romans and lastly, Croats live here, build their homes and churches, sail the sea, grow, work and die. Over a hunderd historic sites are spread around the islands.
One of the first settlements on the islands is Soline, a small village dating from the neolithic age. Kastrum, an ancient settlement on Brijuni tells us about the Goth, Bizant and Venice presence in the area and the influence they have had on the local people. Kastrum is well known for the villas built in the area, with Rustica and its nearby olive oil and wine producing tools, being the most famous. One of the most interesting things to see is a Roman villa in the Verige bay. Built in the 1st century BC, villa is mesmerizingly beautiful and wonderfully decorated, with many temples built inside to glorify the ancinet Gods and Godesses such as Neptun and Venus. The extreme beauty and cultural importance made Brijuni a home to the Presidental palace back in the 1950's and it has hosted over a third of the world's presidents since.
Make sure you come to Brijuni as there are many wonders on the islands, waiting for you to explore!