September 8, 2010

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Izola/Isola, Slovenia

A lovely Slovenian seaside resort

Izola (Italian Isola, pronounced as , older Isola d'Istria) is a lovely coastal small town in nortern Istria, a peninsula in the northern Mediterranean. The first settlement dates back to the 6th century, the name Insula was first mentioned in the 10th century. Insula is Latin for "island", the same goes for the Italian word isola. Izola was named "Island", because the old part was built on an island. Izola is today connected with the main land, because of the land reclamation. Izola has today around 15000 inhabitants, most of them Slovenians. There is also a very small Italian minority and the whole municipality is bilingual (source).

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Compared to Koper, Izola is much smaller and quieter. Although a fishing town and known for the fish processing and canning factory Delamaris, it's also home to a big shipyard (Ladjedelnica Izola) and a toy factory (Mehano). Along with industy and fishing, Izola is famous for its marina and for tourism. A smaller beach, which is near the old center is called "Na Svetilniku", but there are some other beaches south from Izola's center, one is called "Bele Skale" (White rocks). Don't expect sandy beaches, most are a bit rocky here, basically most parts of the Slovenian coast is rocky. The biggest beach in Izola is near Simonov zaliv.

Check some of my photos of Izola's historic part:

Streets in Izola can be very narrow to protect the locals from the scorching sun.

People hanging clothes outside their windows is typical for the Mediterranean.

After we went uphill, we descended again. Izola's center is built on a former island.

Besenghi degli Ughi palace.

In the middle of the center is the main church built at the highest altitude.

The Church of St. Maurus (Cerkev Sv. Mavra) is the biggest church in Izola. The first church was built here in 1356, this one dates from 1547 (source).

The Church of St. Maurus.

The marked road is reserved for cars.

Some streets are too narrow for cars. People usually ride scooters here.

Trg republike (Republic square).

Mlekomat, a vending machine with fresh unprocessed milk with a reflection of me.

My girl wanted to try it and she loved it. The cold milk was so refreshing.

Republic square again.

Marina near Sončno nabrežje.

The Church of St. Mary of Haliaetum.

Manziiolijev trg (Manzioli square).

Then we headed back to the parking space on the other side of Izola.

Taking some more pics before leaving the lovely Izola.

And almost back at the parking space. Next stop: Salt works, Portorož and Piran.

Izola is really a very lovely and picturesque small town. If I could choose, where to live in Slovenia, when I retire, I'd most likely choose Izola, which is not so full with tourists like Piran and not so fast paced like Koper. And people are very friendly here. It's normal, that they greet you on the streets, happened to my girlfriend twice.

My rating of Izola:

Great place for photos ✰✰✰✰
Well preserved and clean ✰✰✰✰
Toilets, parking, souvenirs ✰✰✰✰
Friendly to tourists ✰✰✰✰✰

The beach in Izola :Before [Slovenia Tour 2010] Next: Road to Portorož>>

[All photos by MKL, 2010]


  1. Wow, this place looks pretty and cozy. I can imagine the people there to be friendly just as you have mentioned. =)

  2. wow milk vending!!! anyway the streetscape and the buildings there...looks like those small towns in italy... :) nice!

  3. neat pics, the roads are so narrow, I guess that's why cars there tend to be smaller than cars here! too many SUVs and mini vans here if you ask me! But wow the building archetecture looks amazing.

    and yes, wouldn't I like to spend a day with John Mayer on a date! I will get john mayer, and various STDs in the gift package, yumm hahaha

  4. You're getting nearer... it looks more and more like Italy! ;-)

  5. It was difficult getting the comments page to load...third time lucky!

    If this didn't all look so Mediterranean, close up, it could, at a distance, be mistaken for a peninsula or two in Scotland. ;)

  6. @Mel: It's totally cozy. Come to relax here... oh no, you're from the Philppines, you have 1000s of miles of beaches :P

    @fufu: That Mlekomat is awesome. My girl is a big fan :P And this part used to be Italian before...

    @Julie: No SUVs in central Izola, that's for sure :)

    @Daisy: Yesss... Izola used to be under Venice for 600 years, that left a mark on the town :)

    @ZACL: Oh really? Interesting.

  7. The buildings look beautiful!!!!!
    I've never seen a vending machine for milk before. Very interesting! :)

  8. *~kAy~*: Well, it was also my first, haha. I heard about them before, but never tried. Those machines are common now, because the farmers complain their milk is bought at a very low price, so they wanna sell the milk directly to the consumer :)

  9. I've always lived in Toronto - big city....but my parents have lived in small cities and they said the same - that people are much more friendlier and it's just safer in general. Like people don't lock their front doors (at least back then in those days they didn't).
    It is very Mediterranean feel with the narrow streets and the seaside. When you said Izola is mostly based on fishing and that the beaches are rocky (not white sandy beaches) it reminded me of my trip to Halifax which is on the East coast of's a fishing province and rocky on the seaside for sure...very gloomy in weather unlike Izola which seems to have so much sun :)
    How cool! I haven't seen fresh milk at a vending machine before like that!

  10. This is beautiful!

    It sounds like a very interesting, picturesque place without the tourists - I've never liked really touristy places.

    I've always wanted to visit the northern Mediterranean areas, Croatia is on one of my top places to go, this will also be now!

  11. @Karen: You should try our fresh milk, it's really good. Hope you have the chance to travel around Europe one day :)

    @Becks: Wow, cool. You wanna go Croatia? It's just a hop away from us. In case you're in Istria, at least come to Slovenia to see Piran, you won't regret it. Izola is worthy of a visit, too :)

  12. I love that there is colored buildings! Bright pink and orange! Reminds me of Central America. We don't have that here, at least not a lot, and I haven't seen a lot of it on my European travels. That what I meant when I commented on Taiwan post a while back to where there loads of bright colored buildings. Is this typical of Slovenia?

    ps. now that you're posting so many photos of Lilly I think you can post some of your self as well :P

  13. Milk vending machine, haha that's new. Was there a cow behind a machine? =p

    Izola's nice in its own way. Looks like Slovenia has quite a few noteworthy seaside towns, each with their own charm.

    I prefer Piran though.

  14. @Carina: There are some pics of me posted here and there, just not so cute like Lily's, hehe. I have all pics of me on FB, just add me :)

    @Shingo: I prefer Piran, too. But it can get very crowded, Izola is mellow and peaceful :)


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