The 7 Best Beaches in Pula, Croatia to Chill on

Pula, Croatia, is renowned for dreamy beaches, nearly intact Roman ruins, and monuments still dominating its Old Town. The amphitheater also stands out in this picturesque port city. There is a lot to explore in the area, but save time for the seven best beaches in Pula. 

Ambrela Beach: For Beach Club Lovers 

Ambrela Beach in Pula Croatia
©Silverije, Wikimedia Commons

Framed by rocks, Ambrela Beach is a small cove ideal for several kinds of travelers: families, solo travelers, and beach club lovers. With limited access, beach clubs occupy a sizable portion of the beach. Only guests staying in the resort area have access to the beach facilities. There are restaurants, lounge chairs and umbrellas available, as are restrooms and showers. 

You can also rent jet skis or jump on a catamaran. 

Ambrela Beach is located about 10 minutes from Pula in the neighboring town of Verudela.

Glistening in the sun as if studded with diamonds, the crystal sea makes for perfect snorkeling. One advantage of Ambrela Beach, or Umbrella Beach—apart from facilities like showers, restrooms, and beach bars—is that it’s all pebbles. No leaving with a sandy towel. 

Ambrela can get crowded, but you’ll find your private spot under a fragrant resin-coated pine. Oh, and do stay until the skies turn pink. Ambrela Beach is renowned for its vibrant pink sunsets.

Are you into art? If so, check out Verudela Art Park right behind the beach. The sculptures on display look particularly lovely at night when illuminated, glowing in all their beauty like Christmas trees.

Cyclone Beach: For Adventurous Travelers

Cyclone Beach near Pula Croatia

Hiding 4 km (2.5 miles) west of Pula near Stoja, Cyclone beach is a charmer. Arguably one of the best beaches in Istria, the famed triangular peninsula that’s part of Slovenia and Croatia. 

Cyclone’s idyllic beach features a mix of stone, pebbles, and turquoise waters, ideal for swimming and snorkeling. Getting here requires a short walk from the road, via a campsite in the woods, and then down some stairs. But it’s well worth the sweat. You’ll be rewarded with sweet scents wafting from the verdant pines which line this paradisiacal hideaway. 

Unfortunately, Cyclone Beach lacks amenities like stores, restrooms, changing rooms, and showers. So, be sure to arrive prepared, wearing swimsuits and carrying food and beverages. If you curl up for a kip, your peace will only be interrupted by squawking seagulls at the nearby Seagull’s Rocks. 

Are you a daredevil? Do you like cliff jumping? You can jump right into the sea from the rocks and get your adrenaline pumping. 

Numerous sea caves off this rocky bay make for exciting kayaking adventures. 

And if you just want to go for a casual swim, it’s best to enter the sea from the pebble beach, not the cliffs. 

Hawaii Beach: For Nature Lovers

Hawaii Beach in Pula
©Vhorvat Wikimedia Commons

Another excellent spot for cliff jumping is Havajska Plaža or Hawaii beach. It’s just 4.5 kilometers (2.5 miles) south of Pula’s city center near Verudela.

Surrounded by two rocky headlands, the beach is only accessible on foot. The cove’s name is derived from the big waves during the Jugo wind, which reminds people of Hawaii. Some 50 meters away, you’ll find Verudela Canyon—perfect for jumping into the ocean and feeling the adrenaline. 

The best beach in Pula for many, Hawaii Beach is a pebbled cove with a Caribbean feel, flanked by sweet-smelling pines. Turquoise, crystal clear water invites you for a swim. And as a beach bum, you can stretch out in the sun and work on your tan. 

Bear in mind, though, that due to its remote location in the Verudela Peninsula, this beach only gets sunshine until early afternoon. Take the path from the Hotel Park Plaza Arena to get there.

Facility-wise, there’s hardly anything; loungers and umbrellas are available. But hey, look at that dream beach. 

Histria Beach: For Water Sports Enthusiasts

Aerial of the beaches in Pula, Croatia

Situated next to the Hotel Park Plaza Histria, 4.5 kilometers (2.5 miles) south of Pula, the hotel’s namesake beach slopes gently into clear warm water. 

As is customary for visiting beaches in Pula, you can, and should, bring your goggles and snorkel here. 

You can also try stand-up paddleboarding, simultaneously working on your tan and frame as you paddle along, navigating small waves that glitter in the bright sunshine. And tackling the inflatable over-water obstacle course will feed your adventurous side. 

Want to take it easy? Histria Beach also boasts plenty of rocks, pebbles, and concrete to sit on, unwind, and soak up the sun.

Fragrant pines at the end of the bay offer shade on hot summer days. And recliners and umbrellas are available for hire in the high season, as are drinks at the pop-up beach bar. 

For more facilities, visit one of the hotels and bars surrounding Histria Beach. There, you can find beach volleyball, football, tennis, and squash courts, to name a few.

Valkane Beach: For City Beach Lovers

Blue water and rocky shore in Croatia

Locals love Valkane Beach, and understandably so, with its crystal clear emerald sea and stretch of sand—one of the few sandy beaches in Pula, Croatia. 

Featuring concrete slabs and sweet-smelling pines that provide shade, Valkane is great for winding down. And it’s just 2.5 kilometers (1.5 miles) southwest of Pula’s town center. Facilities include beach bars, restrooms, parking, and a floating playground in summer. 

And if you stroll along the rocks, you’ll come across graffiti, metal steps leading down to the sea, and the odd lizard scurrying away.

Valsaline Beach: For Relaxation-Seekers

sunset over the water in Croatia

Three kilometers south (1.8 miles) of Pula, Valsaline Beach is a leisurely 20-minute stroll away from Verudela bus station. Like most Pula beaches, it features pebbles, rocks, and concrete walls to sit on and gently eases into shallow, clear, calm waters. 

Come here if you’re after a dip in the warm sea away from the masses; Valsaline Beach is generally quiet and less frequented than other beaches on the Verudela peninsula.

Facility-wise, you can find washrooms, and a beach bar is only a short walk away. 

Aside from snorkeling, diving, and sunbathing, amble along the boardwalk. It’s one of the unforgettable things to do in Pula. Catching the salty breeze, you can watch fishing boats gently bob on emerald waters and escape it all.

Banjole Beach: For Families

clear blue water and pebble beach near Pula Croatia

A round-up of the best beaches in Pula wouldn’t be complete without covering Banjole Beach, which lies seven kilometers (4.5 miles) southeast of Pula’s city center.

Also known as Del Mar Beach, Banjole Beach sits close to the vacation settlement of the same name in Pula’s south. 

This 450-meter-long pebble beach that slopes gently into the sea is popular with families due to the restaurants and cafes that cater to parents and their kids. 

Showers and toilets are available, as are sunloungers and umbrellas for hire, and pine trees provide shade. 

Where to Go After Pula?

waterway in Venice, Italy

After Pula, it’s time to check out Venice and see what the hype is all about. With Venezia Lines, it’s only a four-hour ferry ride from Pula to Venice.

Another great place to visit after Pula is Porec. The historic old town boasts a Euphrasian Basilica complex, whose gem-studded Byzantine mosaics are well-known globally. 

You can also find camping areas in Porec.

An 85-minute bus ride from Pula to Porec costs a paltry $9 with Autotrans by Arriva.

And you haven’t been to Croatia unless you’ve checked out Rovinj, a cute little fishing port with cobbled streets leading to the hilltop church of St. Euphemia. The bus ride from Pula to Rovinj takes only 45 minutes and costs $6.

FAQ

Are there sandy beaches in Pula, Croatia?

Aside from a tiny patch at Valkane Beach, no. It’s all rocks and pebbles in Pula. But that doesn’t take away from the quality of the turquoise, crystal waters. Plus, you won’t have to worry about sandy towels or sand in your hotel room.

What should you bring to Pula for a beach vacation?

A pair of water shoes, so you can enjoy the less barefoot-friendly cliffs and rocks, too.

Are the beaches in Pula safe?

While we can’t guarantee that no one will make off with your valuables if you leave them unattended, Pula is a very safe place. But take precautions, just as you would in any town. 

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