Charming Piran is the highlight of Slovenia’s short coastline. This walled Venetian town is full of history -- Dubrovnik in miniature, if you like. While the town can easily be toured in a day, the emergence of several backpacker hostels in Piran has changed the accommodation scene in the last couple of years and visitors are more likely now to spend the night in Piran. Younger visitors, however, may prefer to base themselves somewhere more lively such as Izola, Koper, or Portoroz, which are more lively in the evening.
This part of Slovenia has passed back and forth over the centuries, which is why visitors will notice a strong Italian flavour to the town; Italian is an official language in this part of the country and the town attracts a lot of Italian day-trippers. Most of the waterfront restaurants serve pizzas, pasta dishes, and seafood risottos.
The best way to enjoy Piran is to take a leisurely stroll around the narrow old streets and the old town walls, which were constructed as fortifications against Ottoman invaders. At the heart of old Piran is Tartini Square, named after Guiseppe Tartini, the eighteenth-century Italian composer who lived in the town. A museum covers his life and works, and an internationally renowned festival of his music takes place annually in the town.
Art lovers should check out the open-air sculpture park on the nearby Seča peninsula -- it is part of the widespread Forma Viva tradition which started in Slovenia in the 1960s. There are a number of Forma Viva parks across the country.
The handful of hostels in Piran include a well-known chain; some are located in the old town itself, giving good access to the sights, restaurants, and the sea.
Hi, I'm Fiona Thompson,
the Hostelz.com local expert for Piran hostels. Welcome.