Zminj travel guide
Ancient fortifications, baroque church and a centre for folk festivals and agricultural produce
Frescoes, delicious cheese, history, wellbeing Zminj is a small town (700 people) and is a lovely old place in the centre of Istria, surrounded by vineyards, olive groves, orchards and flower meadows. A citadel with four towers and a fountain date from 15th century. The window sills of the old stone houses are filled with red geraniums and the village squares with shady archways hide an odd wine bar and a good restaurant. The patron saint of Zminj is St. Bartholomew, in whose honour the town folk prepare a fantastic end of summer fete. You will find its tiny church immediately at the town gates. A special thing about Zminj are its further three small churches, all filled with precious frescoes from 15th century. An old Croatian dialect is spoken in Zminj and poets come to read their poetry, musicians come to play their accordions.
You will enjoy so much authentic local atmosphere and delicious food, from several excellent restaurants serving home made noodles, gnocchi, ravioli and some other local shapes known as fusi and pljukanci (delicious, you must try). The heart of pasta country, Zminj even has its own festival of pasta in the first week in July. Along the fantastic fresh food a special treat has been prepared for children who can attend their own pasta workshop. A local farming family has specialised in making dairy products. Cheese lovers can visit their award winning Latus farm for aged and young cheeses and a talk about how they are made. Plates of grilled cheese, air dried ham, olive oil and corn bread are on the menu. Beaches are 20 min drive away and plenty of hiking and biking trails are nearby. There is a cave which will keep you occupied and has interesting formations made of limestone. The magical towns of Porec
are a short trip away. For a special day out, visit the famous hilltop towns Motovun
(great views and film festival), Groznjan (music, wine bars), Oprtalj
(truffles) and Momjan (wineries, restaurants) ...endless possibilities.