Dear Pula visitors, today, I decided to put myself in your shoes and play the role of someone visiting Pula for the first time. So, I tried searching for “things to do in Pula”. As a result, many pages popped out with their lists of 5-40 things to do in Pula. Almost all of them listed the obvious favourites: the Amphitheatre, Temple of Augustus, lighting giants, the triumphal arch of the Sergius, Zerostrasse, etc. They are all beautiful monuments worth seeing and you’ll need about 2hrs for a photo-walk around city centre.
For the ones that may be somewhat nature and adventure oriented and would love to explore the “wild side” of Pula, we have several strong suggestions for that “to do” list. Let’s start with a lovely walk on Lungomare. This seaside walkway will take you along the bays and beaches of Pula, where you can enjoy the view, the sounds and smells of the sea, have a drink or two in beach bars, go for a swim or take your kids (if you have) climbing in the adventure park. For your four-legged best friend we suggest forest Sijana for long walks or dog beaches of Pula, like the dog beach near camping Stoja, nearby Valovine bay and Seagull rocks; Saccorgiana beach or the Lighthouse beach at Verudela, a small peninsula where you can visit Pula Aquarium, located inside a 130-years old fort. It’s a unique combination of military history and underwater life. If you are, on the other hand, more into a real underwater adventure, there are more options for snorkelling, such as our Seagull’s Rocks Snorkelling(opens in a new tab) or scuba diving tours as well. Around the coastline you can also find a place or two where you can rent a SUP board or you might also consider our guided SUP & Coasteering Adventure(opens in a new tab) or a kayak experience. Our most popular and most visited kayak tour is the Pula Cliffs and Cave Kayak(opens in a new tab) tour.
Pula Cliffs & Cave Kayaking
If you take the city bus line number 1 and let it take you to the last stop Stoja, you’ll find yourself right in front of the camping site with the same name. Looking to the right side of the bus stop, you’ll see Valovine bay with a lovely pebbled beach and a ski and wakeboarding cable lift floating in the middle of the bay. That lovely clear, green water, bay is already inviting to jump in. This is where Pula Cliffs & Cave Kayak tour takes place.
You can find us next to a parked kayak trailer, wearing t-shits with our Pula Outdoor logo, often wearing a hat and sunglasses, and welcoming our guests with a clipboard in one hand and hand sanitiser in the other!
You found us! Excellent! Step one completed! Step two: we get you all geared up with double sit-on-top kayaks, paddles, life vests, dry bags, water shoes, masks and snorkels, in colder conditions also wetsuits. Basically, all you need for a comfortable and safe 3 hour activity on the sea. Even if basic swimming skills are required for participating, we’ll consider having you on tour if you are a non-swimmer too, just please let us know in advance. You are geared up! The tour is also suited for absolute kayaking beginners, because in step three, we’ll teach you kayaking basics, brief you on safety measures and weather conditions, and off we go!
We start and finish on the same spot on Valovine beach, but the route is not always the same. There are 3 main attractions we’ll see: a small canyon, cliffs on the peninsula of Muzil (ex military zone) and the Blue cave at Seagull’s Rocks. We visit all the attractions on every tour, just not necessarily always in that order. There are other kayak tours in the area that operate on a similar route. Therefore, we adjust our itinerary, when needed, to avoid the crowd. The length of the tour may also be adjusted according to the capabilities of the participants. Usually, on average, we paddle around 4-5 kilometers. However, when you book a tour like this one, please keep in mind that your muscles are the motor pushing the kayak forward. You’ll get a bit tired, but do not worry, this is an easygoing tour with plenty of stops to rest, admire the view, chat with your guide and other guests, learn about the area, and show you around.
During the tour we’ll make a stop somewhere on the beach and have a look under the sea surface, through a mask with snorkel. If you have never used one before, we’ll show you how. There are many things to see. You may find yourselves face to face with a fish, have a close encounter with jelly fish, or find a star fish. Often, we see small, transparent, egg-like shaped jellies. Don’t worry, they don’t burn, they’re just a bit slippery and slimy. Just be careful about the sea urchins, if you step on them properly, sometimes the needles go through shoes too. The needles are not poisonous, but they can be annoying, especially if you have longer walks planned in your itinerary. After the swim, some participants like to jump into adventure. Literally jump, because during the tour it’s also possible to do cliff jumping. We start from the lower place and work our way up higher. Due to safety, we’ll not go very high, about 5-6 meters maximum. That height is more than enough to give you a proper adrenaline rush. It is perfectly fine if you just want to sit, relax, make pictures and videos, or just watch the daredevils jump.
We try to keep the best for last, however sometimes it will come first. The Cave! No matter how many times we go inside it’s still beautiful and exciting. Navigating the narrow tunnel with head lamps is always a challenge. As we progress through the tunnel, our eyes get used to the shy light provided by head lamps. If you don’t see anything, chances are, you’ve forgotten to take off your sunglasses! (It happens a lot :smiley:). You may ask, why not stronger lamps? Caves are usually dark inside, and are habitats of creatures which love the darkness. Exactly for that reason, we give you just enough light to look around and not to disturb the bats living inside. Yes, bats! They’ll not get into your hair, they are much more afraid of you than you’re of them. At the furthest point in the cave, there’s a lovely pebbled beach which allows us to step out of the kayaks and have a look around at the natural creations such as stalactites. After a short visit, we follow the light at the entrance/exit of the tunnel back to the sunshine.
Smiling faces is what we like to see. We hope to bring out a smile on every face. If you were a kayaking beginner at the start of the tour, by the end of it, after navigating narrow cracks, tunnels and caves, you’ll definitely be a bit more experienced kayaker. Your muscles may be a bit sore; the best cure for that is chilling on the beach, and some good food in your belly. If you don’t know where to eat, ask your guide and you’ll get several suggestions, depending on the type of meal you’d like to have.
For the end, few small requests for all the visitors of Pula: please use reusable drinking bottles if possible. Be respectful to the nature and its inhabitants. Whatever you take to the outdoors and the sea with you, please bring it back. If you find waste on the sea or the beach, be motivated to take it to the nearest bin. Please, try not to disturb any wildlife above or under the water surface. Be happy and enjoy life. Thank you for reading this article and visiting Pula. If you’d like to receive more posts like this, make sure you subscribe to our newsletter!