secret back door walk to Piran
We had heard about this alternative route along the coast from the village of Fiesa to Piran and so we went on a late September trip to find out the logistics of what you have to do. We found a lovely little place to park your car, which is free in the off season, but of course you have to pay in the summer. There is a fabulous path hugging the Adriatic sea up to a back door into Piran, with new, exciting views to be seen from one of Slovenia's top tourist destinations.
Quite rightly, Piran should be part of your to do list when visiting Slovenia for the first time.. it's only a 45 min drive from the Lodge and you will get a Slovenian-Venetian-Mediterranean experience, which is a total contrast to the other mountaineous, forest, river, rock and lake covered sub regions in the rest of Green Slovenia.. you almost have to pinch yourself to remember you are lucky enough to be in Slovenia!
Piran is a peninsula, pretty much surrounded by the sea, so you feel like you are exploring a lost Venetian island. You cannot drive directly into Piran, don't be fooled by the large car park directly outside the village as this is just for the local people.
the Multi Story Option:
But don't worry, there are plenty of ways to get to visit Piran, some people will park in the large and cramped multi story car park on the edge of town and then just walk down to the sea and follow the yummy path into a Slovenian seaside treat that can compete with anything Croatia has to offer. There is also a shuttle bus from the car park to the start of the town, but if you are going to visit Piran, you will need to walk around the tight picturesque streets, stunning squares and seaside promenade anyway, so you might as well walk into the town from the car park. (Walk to the sea, stop and go right)!
the Portoroz Option:
It can be a little uncomfortable parking in the tight Italian style multi story above Piran and so many of our guests follow a much better option to park in the much larger Portoroz, just along the coast. From here you can enjoy a seaside stroll about 3-4 km to Piran, either walking back later to the car or taking a hopper bus that goes between the 2 towns. This is also a really great way to have a relaxing seaside stroll and you also get to experience the "tutti Frutti" Slovenian alternative to Piran, with the hotels, casinos, sandy beaches and lots of ice cream!
the Fiesa secret walk Option:
But if you want to avoid all this hustle & bustle and can find a space in Fiesa, then this is another secret option for you. As you drive towards Piran you will see signs for Fiesa.. they are a little tricky to follow at times, but remember the principle that you are going down 5 mins or so to the sea. Go to the very end of the road next to two small man made lakes and there are 2 small car parks, if you are lucky you will find a space, but please note the final car park belongs to the hotel, (you will see), so you can't park there.
Fiesa is fantastically quiet, you almost feel like a secret agent creeping up on Piran! There is pretty much just a hotel in Fiesa by the sea, but just along from the car park you can find a lovely brick promenade that snakes under the high cliffs and takes you to the back door of Piran!
Even better, you can settle yourself anywhere along this path by the sea for a dip or a snooze. Anyone expecting Cannes or Ilfracombe should go to Cannes or lfracombe, as the seaside on the Slovenian Riviera is rocky, but the sea is warm, salty and stunning, often like a lake, so perfect for swimming!
As you walk along the promenade, you might not realise the places you can see off in the distance on a clear day, but yes, that is Venice and yes, that is Mt Nanos in the distance.. the very same mountain that Lodge guests enjoy from our back garden on the other side!
It takes about 15-20 mins to stroll to Piran and the sea wall views from up top are really great. You have now arrived in Piran, so go off and enjoy yourselves, look for the secret squares and quiet restaurants. Notice that not one door is the same as another and explore the tight Venetian style alleyways with clothes hanging out to be dried on the warm Meditteranean breeze.
To find the path again to go back to your car, just walk up the steep cobbled street that leads up to the main church from the central Tartini square and you will see a sign back to Fiesa.
And even if you couldn't get a space in Fiesa or parked elsewhere, there is nothing stopping you taking time out from your day in Piran to stroll on this same promenade to Fiesa and back.. Have a great day out in Piran!