Central Istria Tourist board / Turistička zajednica
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    Pićan

Welcome to the Town of Legends

Pićan, Petina, Petinum, Pedena, Penna, Biben, Pyben, Piben, Piebn, Piebnn, Pitchann.... What's in a name? Sometimes it is not easy to follow the traces of Pićan in historical sources due to its numerous names. The origin of the name Petina is sometimes attributed to the assumption that the Diocese of Pićan was the fifth in the world where the word pet (five) contains a Celtic root.

Pićan was definitely settled in early prehistoric times. The oldest parts of the fortified hilltop town of the tribe of Histri were located on the Calvary Hill (13), north of the modern town. After that the town was probably settled by the Celtic tribe of the Secusa. In Roman times, probably on the same strategically important location, there was a military stronghold and the settlement Petina.
Some authors linked the town of Pićan to the name Pucinium, mentioned by Pliny and Ptolemy as the name of a fortification in central Istria, famous for its excellent wine even in the Roman Court. Livia, wife of the Emperor Augustus, believed that her longevity was attributed to the fact that she would drink only this wine. The only visible evidence of the Roman presence is the inscription on the stone incorporated in the doorpost of the house facing the bell tower (4). The inscription mentions a Lucius Caonalius of the family Pupinia that can be found in various other places in Istria (Kringa, Pula, Poreč, Koper, Trieste).
At the time of the Byzantine rule Pićan was the administrative centre of central Istria. From the Late Antiquity to the end of the 18th century, Pićan was the seat of the Diocese of Pićan, one of the oldest, but also smallest in the Christian world.

The Legend of St. Nicephorus

Many legends, sometimes excluding each other and often intertwined, are linked to the emergence of the Diocese of Pićan and its patron, Saint Nicephorus. Orientation is made even more difficult by the fact that Pićan is, in fact, linked to two Nicesphoruses – Saint Nicephorus the Martyr and Saint Nicephorus the Bishop.
The legend of Saint Nicephorus the Martyr says that the Roman Emperor Constantine the Great (who proclaimed Christian toleration, promoted Christianity and built a new capital of the Empire – Constantinople) had the body remains of Saint Nicephorus of Antioch put on a ship in Constantinople. He ordered that a church had to be devoted to this Saint on the spot where the ship stopped of its own volition. According to a longer version, the Saint's body, after landing on the shores of Istria, was mounted on a horse which was left free and which stopped – in Pićan.

The legend of Saint Nicephorus Bishop and the Thorndancers The second legend tells of Saint Nicephorus, the Bishop of Pićan (in some versions he was the first Bishop of Pićan and the founder of the Diocese). The inhabitants of Pićan complained to the Patriarch of Aquileia of his alleged immoral life, namely for living with his nephew. In order to clear his name of the charges and prove his mission, Nicephorus offered to open a source of potable water by striking the barren and thorny acacia grown ground with a stick. The residents of Pićan declined that, saying that the acacia was more important as it is later used in the vineyard. He replied by saying May you walk on thorns. The residents of Pićan are still called Thorndancers. On his way to the Patriarch of Aquileia, Saint Nicephorus created water wells in Gračišće, Krbune, Buzet, Trieste and in many other places. When he stood in front of the Patriarch, he had no place to put his cloak so he hung it on a sunbeam shining into the room – this sign was enough to acquit him of all charges. 
On his way back Nicephorus died and his remains were kept in Umag until 1379, when they were stolen by the Genovese. However, obeying the Saint's wish and as sign of grace, his right hand was sent to Pićan where it has been kept to this day in the Cathedral.
It is obvious that the Bishops of Pićan wanted to disentangle these contradictions of two saints of the same name. Bishop Antonio Marenzi (1635-1646) wrote a book about their lives. During a reconstruction of the Cathedral, sculptures of both saints were installed on its façade and both saints are represented in the picture over the Altar of St. Nicephorus, where St. Nicephorus the Martyr and Protector of the Diocese of Pićan keeps a layout of Pićan in his hand.

From Aquileia to Napoleon

In the Middle Ages, not only the ecclesiastical, but also the secular rule in Pićan was in the hands of the Patriarchs of Aquileia. Following that period, Pićan was included to the Pazin hold administered by Majnard Črnogradski (Meinhard von Schwarzenburg). While the coastal Istrian towns accepted Venetian rule one by one, Pićan, together with Pazin, had a completely different destiny. At the end of the 17th century, by the marriage of  Meinhard's heiress, Countess Matilda of Pazin, to the Count Engelbert of Gorizia, Pićan was made part of their Grafschaft Ysterreich. This, in turn, became a private possession of the Habsburg family in 1374 under the name of the Pazin County. In order to get the money necessary to finance their rise on the throne, the Habsburgs prefer to give the entire County in short-term leases to various noblemen. The possession was managed in their name by Captains. The half centennial destiny of the division of Istria into the Austrian and Venetian part, marked by often brutal conflicts of the two quarrelsome neighbours, incursions of the Turks and outbreaks of plague, ended only with the fall of Venice and the arrival of Napoleon.

A walk around Pićan

The park in front of the entrance to Pićan, just like the neighbouring town of Gračišće or in Tinjan hosts the sculpture of St. John Nepomucene (9), a Czech saint, patron of queens, bridges, secrets of the confessional and patron against floods, built in 1714. Sometime in the past, Pićan probably had a drawbridge at the entrance into the town. Not far there is the Monument to the residents of Pićan who died in the 2nd World War (10). Just below the park there is the Church of Saint Roch, patron against plague (11) where the foundation stone was laid by the Bishop Gašpar Bobek (1631-1634) during one of the most severe plague epidemics. The old part of the town is entered through the monumental Town Gate (1) dating from the 14th century, renovated in 1613 at the time of the Bishop Antonio Zara (1601 -1621). Owing to his close connections with the Archduke Ferdinand, from a simple cleric Zara became the Bishop of Pićan at the age of 27. At Pićan he wrote his masterpiece, a kind of an encyclopaedia of philosophy entitled Anatomia ingeniorum et scientiarum sectionibus quattuor comprehensa, printed in Venice in 1615. He will be remembered as the first Italian thinker who separated from the Scholasticism. Zara renovated the Bishop's Palace (2) , and started the construction of a new Cathedral. Unfortunately, in 1653 both the Cathedral and the Bishop's Palace were devastated in the largest revolts of peasants in Istria. Oppressed by new levies introduced to cover the debts of the County to Carniola and especially because of the extreme severity of the representative of the Carniolan Administration, Hanibal Bottoni, about three thousand people from all around the County gathered on 6 July at Gračišće and marched towards Pićan led by Mate Bolka. They destroyed the Town Gate, broke in the Cathedral, Bishop's Palace and the houses of the clergymen, and sentenced Bottoni and his chancellor on the spot. The bell-tower of Pićan (3) made from white limestone was built in 1872. Apart from being one of the tallest in Istria (48 m), it is also considered by many to be the most beautiful. At the foot of the bell tower still stands the stone measure used to measure the tributes of the serfs. The parish church of the Announcement (5) acquired its current external form after the renovation in 1753, the interior was redecorated in baroque style during the office of Aldarago Piccardi (1766-1784), the last Bishop of Pićan. As it became a cathedral, the church is in possession of an extensive and valuable inventory, the most renowned item being the bishop's cloak embroidered in gold, gift of the Empress Maria Theresa. Tombs of the bishops of Pićan and other meritorious citizens of Pićan, decorated with relief and coats of arms, are placed under the church floor and the plateau in front of the church. The Franz Ferdinand's Viewpoint – the view from this point over the undulating landscape of central Istria, just as the special taste of Pićan's wine offered to him by the parochial priest, convinced the Austrian Royal Prince Franz Ferdinand to visit Pićan again, but this time in the company of his wife Sophie, a passionate painter, who would record the sight. Unfortunately, this wish was never realised as they were both assassinated in Sarajevo in 1914, shortly after his visit. Opposite the parish church is the Birth House of Matko Brajša Rašan (6) choir master, recorder of old Istrian melodies and the composer of the current official Istrian anthem Krasna zemljo, composed in 1912 after the lyrics of Ivan Cukon. It is less known that there was another important musician linked to Pićan. This is Jurij Slatkonja, a Slovene musician, founder and director of the Ensemble of the Viennese Court and later the first Bishop of Vienna, who is mentioned as the Administrator of the Diocese of Pićan in 1506 and as Bishop in 1513. From the church square we can continue our walk west, along the building where the National Reading Room (7) operated from 1914 till 1918. Through a small passage you can step into the gardens to see the most preserved parts of the town walls. On the other side of Pićan, we recommend you visit the viewpoint of saint Helen (8), named after the church which once stood in this place. In this part of the two you can see many abandoned houses of interesting architecture, with rustic lintels and stairs cut in rock, which are waiting to be inspired with a new life. We recommend that you end your walk through Pićan by visiting the single-nave Romanesque church of Saint Michael (12) dating from the 13th century located on a neighbouring hill. The interior of the church hides valuable paintings dating back to the first half of the 15th century, which are waiting to be restored. The unforgettable view which extends from this natural viewpoint is enriched by the stone sculpture The Family (1999) by Nane Zavagno, who took part in the Mediterranean Sculpture Symposium at Dubrova near Labin. 

Accommodation in destination

Booking

ANIČIĆ

Aničić Anton, Pićan 64
Pićan
+385 (0)95 9133 019
samantaa20@gmail.com
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Appartment in a family house for 4+2 persons

Booking

APARTMAN PIĆAN

Obitelj Gržinić, Pićan 40
Pićan
+385 (0)98 983 5508
galerija.pican@gmail.com
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Appartment for 2+2 persons

Booking

NADIJA

Nadija Kolić, Pićan 61, 52332 Pićan
Pićan
+385 52 869 386
nb.kolic@gmail.com
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Holiday house for 4+2 persons

Booking

PETINA I

Krulić Željko, Pićan 14
Pićan
12 km from Pazin direction Labin
+385 (0)91 7504899, (0)52 869558
krulicmariana@yahoo.it
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Appartment for 2 persons in centre of Pićan

Booking

PETINA II

Željko Krulić, Pićan 14
Pićan
+385(0)91 9409534, (0)91 750 4899
krulicmariana@yahoo.it
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Appartment for 4 persons in Pićan`s centre

Booking

VILLA EMANUELA

Biljana Benković, Most Pićan 4c, 52332 Pićan
Pićan
info@central-istria.com
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Holiday house with pool for 8+2 persons

Booking

VILLA HELENA

Helena Smoković, Most Pićan 4d
Pićan
098 991 4206
marko.smokovic94@gmail.com
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Holiday house for 11+2 persons

Booking

VILLA RIMANIĆI

Jordan Fornažar, Rimanići 71, 52332 Pićan
Pićan
15 km from Pazin direction Labin
098 174 7613
info@central-istria.com
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Holiday cottage with pool for 6+2 persons

Accommodation

Booking

BARON

Livio Marcan, Tupljak 76, 52333 Potpićan
Tupljak
091 575 6177
monika.marcan@gmail.com
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Appartment (2+2 persons) in little village in central Istria. Surrounded by hills, perfect for walks, picnic and recreation

Booking

BAŠKERA I

Klara Baškera, Floričići 57, 52332 Pićan
Floričići
20 km from Pazin direction Labin
(052) 869 001, 098 698 533
baskera@net.hr
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Comfortable rural house, stylish decorated with rustical elements, for 9 persons; 4 rooms (2 double, 1 with 3 beds, 1 with twin beds and child bed), 3 bathrooms, kitchen, summer kitchen, covered terace. Pool with shower, pets allowed, park. Nearest house to the waterfall \"Sopot\".

Booking

BOJANA

Bojana Milevoj, Barišići 42, 52332 Pićan
Kukurini
052 869 327, 098 195 7920
bojana.milevoj@yahoo.com
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Holiday house for 4+3 persons

Booking

CASA ULIKA

Karla Čerljenko Bulić, Marinjaši 30a
Sveta Katarina
+385 (0)98 963 8244
kcerljenko@net.hr
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Holiday house with pool for 4+2 persons

Booking

CLARISSA

Lino Baškera, Slavići 2a
Jakomići
+385 (0)98 698 533
eni@linograd.hr
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Holiday house with pool for 6+2 persons

Booking

FLORIČIĆ

Đordano i Vlasta Floričić, Floričići 56
Potpićan
20 km from Pazin direction Labin
869 045, 091 539 1022
doris@croatia-tourism.in
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Family house with 3 appartments with pool and balkony with a view on Pićan and Gračišće. In the very near surrounding is an atractive waterfall Sopot and a hiking rout `St. Simeon`.

Booking

GLAVIĆ

Damir Glavić, Tominčići 55
Tominčići
+385 (0)91 556 2799
bojana.glavic@pu.t-com.hr
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Holiday house with pool for 6+2 persons

Booking

GRADINA

Josip Poropat, Stari Grad 19a, 52332 Pićan
Orič
+385 (0)52 855 831, (0)91 782 3546
poropat_m@hotmail.com
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House with pool, with 2 appartments; one for 3+2 persons, other for 2+1 persons

Booking

HEIDI

Dinko Lukšić, Jurani 13, Orič, 52332 Pićan
Orič
(052) 850 697, 098 961 8636, 091 551 2983
emil.luksic@gmail.com
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Appartment for 4+2 persons

Booking

IVANA Jakomići

Nevenka Težak Miljuš, Jakomići 8, 52332 Pićan
Jakomići
091 522 1845
istra-pek@pu.htnet.hr
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Holiday house with pool for 7+2 persons

Booking

KARLO

Željko Gržinić, Kukurini 20a, 52332 Pićan
Kukurini
(052)869 303, 091 624 2772
grzinic.iva0708@gmail.com
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Holiday house for 6+2 persons

Booking

KATA

Vesna Krpan, Runki 14, 52333 Potpićan
Runki
13 km from Pazin direction Labin
091 540 1255, 091 722 4521
vesna.krpan1@gmail.com

Holiday house with pool for 4+2 persons with big courtyard. Reservation at e-mail: vesna.krpan1@gmail.com

Booking

KATARINA

Kornelija Benazić, Sv. Katarina
Sv.Katarina
17 km from Pazin direction Labin
052 506 131; 091 1625 005
kbenazic@hrt.hr
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Rural house for 6 persons, with 2 bedrooms, kitchen, living room and 2 bathroom (air condition). Winecellar where You can taste wine, behind house ther`s a big courtyard (400m2) with stone fireplace. Possibility for bike rental and pets keeping

Booking

KATARINA Bolobani

Narčizo Smoković, Bolobani 84, Potpićan
Bolobani
info@central-istria.com
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House for 4 persons

Booking

KLARINA

Klaudio Perinić, Sveta Katarina 3, 52332 Pićan
Sveta Katarina
+385 (0)91 594 6806
info@central-istria.com

Holiday house for 8+2 persons (Pets allowed)

Booking

LARISA

Đulijo Franjo Baćac, Debeli Bajci 12, 52332 Pićan
Sveta Katarina
098 98 666 05
info@central-istria.com
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Appartment for 4+1 persons

Booking

LUKEŽ

Davor Lukež, Doline 31a
Montovani
+385 (0)98 972 8583
lukezz2010@hotmail.com
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Appartment with pool for 6+2 persons

Booking

MARINA

Dušan Benković, Jurani 1, 52332 Pićan
Orič
(052) 850 552, 098 986 9723
maribenkovic@gmail.com

Appartment for 4+2 persons in ground floor.

Booking

MARIVA

Đilijana Bilić, Hajnožići 2
Zajci
052 869 068; 091 797 8198
bbili@vip.hr
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Holiday house with pool for 6+2 persons

Booking

OLIMFOS

Edi Terlević, Ćopi 2, 52332 Pićan
Montovani
+385 (0)98 825 454
zeljkatoncic@net.hr
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Holiday house for 6 persons

Booking

OLIVIA

Livio Benković, Cinzebi 46
Zajci
099 6825 669, (052) 869 564
info@central-istria.com
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Appartment for 4 persons

Booking

RIBIĆI

Feručo Jelenić, Montovani 10, 52332 Pićan
Montovani
+385 (0)98 935 05 36
info@central-istria.com

Appartment for 2+2 persons

Booking

ROŽA MARIJA

Josip Udovičić, Kukurini 4, 52332 Pićan
Sv. Katarina
098 972 9378
sestreizkukurini@gmail.com
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Appartment for 4+2 persons

Booking

SAN ROKO

Gracijela Jakačić, Šilci 36, 52332 Pićan
Kukurini
istra.sanroko@gmail.com
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Appartment for 3+2 persons

Booking

SILVI

Silvana Vlah, Krbune 9a, 52333 Potpićan
Krbune
(052) 867 681
silvanavlah@yahoo.co.uk
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Appartment for 4 persons

Booking

SONJA

Sonja Ravnić, Montovani 14, 52332 Pićan
Montovani
091 1440 147
info@central-istria.com
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Holiday house for 7+2 Persons

Booking

TOMINKA

Damir Bilić, Zajci 25a, 52333 Potpićan
Zajci
13 km from Pazin direction Labin
052 869 345, 099 213 0144
bosiljka.bilic@pu.t-com.hr
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House for 4+2 Persons (Booking at www.interchalet.com, house code:IPC135)

Booking

TONČIĆ

Dušan Tončić, Ćopi 2, 52332 Pićan
Montovani
+385 (0)98 82 5454
zeljkatoncic@net.hr
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Modern equipped appartment for 4+1 persons in ground floor of family house (size 52m2), with 3 bedrooms and SAT TV. Garage on disposal. Village Ćopi is more than 400m altitude with magnificent view on Učka mountain and Pićan

Booking

VILLA ANTOANA

Elio Ilić, Žudigi 92
Sveta Katarina
091 285 0221
elio.ilic@gmail.com
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Holiday house with pool for 6+2 persons + free boat trip!

Booking

VILLA FRANZ

Stefano Fiorido, Vlašići 34
Krbune
+385 (0)98 933 2844
stefanofiorido@yahoo.com
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Holiday house with pool for 4+2 persons

Booking

VILLA JELENIĆ

Ljubica Jelenić, Montovani 18a, 52332 Pićan
Montovani
metallum@pu.htnet.hr
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Holiday house with pool for 4+2 persons

Booking

VILLA KARLIĆI

Marija Fornažar, Karlići 67, 52332 Pićan
Tupljak
info@central-istria.com
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Holiday house with pool for 16 persons

Booking

VILLA MARIA Klesari

Goran Smoković, Klesari 10
Zajci
+385 (0)98 265 301
gsm246@hotmail.com
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Holiday house for 6+2 persons, with pool

Booking

VILLA RUNKO

Denis Runko, Klesari 8a
Zajci
+385 (0)98 421 471
runko.denis.oaza.restoran@pu.t-com.hr
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Holiday house with pool for 7+2 persons

Booking

VILLA ULJAR

Pavla Pankrac, Gornji Kralji 16
Jakomići
+385 (0)91 466 9139
091 466 9139
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Holiday house for 6+2 persons and appartment studio for 2 persons

Booking

VLAH

Anđelo Vlah, Krbune bb, 52333 Potpićan
Krbune
(052) 867 681
SVlah@chpmanagement.co.uk
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Holiday house with pool for 6+2 persons

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