A picturesque and lively Istrian town with a beautiful old town centre that radiates charm and peace.
Višnjan is located in the West of Istria, near Poreč, on a gentle hillside of 244 m height above mean sea level.
There are numerous places around Višnjan with an ample tourist offer. A rich and unspoiled nature envelops the entire town, providing peace and true pleasure for those who wish to spend a high quality vacation filled with many alluring contents. The rich history of Višnjan may be felt at every pace and offers a perfect scenery for various cultural and artistic events that come in plenty in this area, especially during the summer months. This is why in Višnjan you can enjoy concerts, film shows and many other events which are characteristic for this part of Istria. All of this is further enriched with a good dose of genuine cuisine. In local ‘trattoria’s’ you can taste truffles, prosciutto, asparagus, fish and sea food specialties and enjoy the prime wines of the area.
Historical and cultural heritage
The name Višnjan comes from the Latin word Vicinianus which means ‘near by’. In the past Višnjan was the closest property of Poreč.
The world renown planetary and the Sun clock are some of the many sacral exponents ‘scattered’ around the entire area. You will encounter bronze period archeological motifs as well as various other historical remains from all periods.
In the village Strpačići, only 1 km away from Višnjan, copper earrings and needles have been found. From 2000. to 1000. BC the Illyrian tribes inhabit the area, and later the Celtic population. There are many remnants from that period on the ‘Montemez’ hill near Višnjan. Montemez is a celtic word and literally means ‘beautiful uplift’.
Aside from everything mentioned, there are also valuable ceramic dish and various other artefact findings dating from the same period. The artefacts have been discovered in Višnjan itself as well, on a site where there used to be a famous ancient and medieval settlement Dilian with a convent and the St. Michael’s Church dating back to the 11th century.
During the previous historical periods and all the way up to the 18th century, Višnjan was surrounded by city walls and the only access to the city was though the city gate, built during the Venetian ruling and the gates were ornamented with the venetian lion and open book symbols.
The Višnjan Planetarium was founded in 1992 as a public planetarium and due to later decisions of the Višnjan Astronomic Society and the Scientific and Educational Centre of Višnjan, in 2005 the Planetarium became an Astronomy Institute.
The activity of the Planetarium is mainly focused on astrometric measurements, and discovering of small space matter, both in which the Planetarium is very successful. During a 16 year period, 1749 asteriod discoveries have been made.
It is because of this that Višnjan planetarium has become one of the most productive planetariums of all times. Due to light pollution, the work of the Višnjan Planetarium is rendered more difficult with the set up of the non environmental friendly lightening in the surrounding area and in 2001 the planetarium ceased its activity completely in this particular site.
The planetarium, however, moved to a different location after the construction of a new planetarium building in Tičan, approximately 3km away from the original site in Višnjan. New astronomic and geophysical measuring equipment has been installed in the location, and having satisfied all the scientific working conditions, the Planetarium has resumed its activity.
The Višnjan Planetarium is currently most active in projects concerning popularisation and education and the programs have been adapted for students of all ages and in every field of science.
Boškarin is a symbol of the entire region. It’s a white and grey cattle with long horns and of an impressive strength.
Up until recently it was often used in agricultural activity for ploughing the fields but also for carrying and transporting all sorts of heavy weight. Boškarin is a very valuable working animal but is also bred for its meat and milk.
With the modernisation and technological development, the number of this particular cattle breed has started to decrease so by the 1990’s there were only a couple of hundreds of them left.
It took almost twenty years to restore the number of this traditional cattle. Today it is manly kept for satisfying the culinary delicacies and at the moment, thanks to local initiatives, there are around 2500 of boskarin in the area.
Boškarin is today no longer used for working in the fields and is bred exclusively for gourmet food production.
It is considered to be an exquisite delicacy but also, because of its appearance, size and strength, a rare attraction.
The boškarin meat has become a part of traditional Istrian cuisine.