Labin, Croatia

Labin The charming medieval town of Labin is perched on a hilltop overlooking the seaside resort of Rabac and the greater part of the Kvarner golf. It is elevated on a 325 meters high hill only three kilometres from the sea in the eastern part of Istria.

The town was developed from the Roman settlement first mentioned in 285 AD as Albona that means 'a town on the hill' or 'an elevated settlement'.

In the past, Labin was fortified, encircled by high defensive walls that have survived only partially.


This picturesque place seduces its visitors with its steep, narrow streets, its cobbled alleys scattered with numerous churches, art galleries, a museum and with the beautiful Baroque and Renaissance edifices in vivid ochre, yellow, orange and pink colours festooned with stone ornamentation.


Although Labin used to be the centre of Istria's mining industry for more than 400 years it hardly shows any vestiges of its mining era, save for its museum and its modern suburb of Podlabin.

This industrial town grew across the plain below the hill in the beginning of the twentieth-century as a result of the coal-mining industry and for accommodating miners and their families.

Nowadays, Podlabin is much more than a residential section with most of the town's shops, restaurants, cafés and services.


In the 1960's Labin's inhabitants started leaving the town because of its possible collapse. Since the old town of Labin is placed on the hill above the coal mines that were mined so extensively the whole old town was endangered by the possible caving in of the earth.

In 1970's, the subsiding of the earth ceased and gradually the mining of coal was also reduced until it was definitely stopped with the last mine closed in the 1989.

This wise decision preserved the old town and enabled its restoration and transformation into an interesting tourist destination.


The date of March 2nd, 1921 earned itself a place in working-class history when the Labin's miners started a strike and soon after helped with peasants it quickly grew into a rebellion against the Italian authorities. Labin is soon declared the short-lived Labin republic or The Independent working republic crushed by Italian army only 34 days after its establishment.


After the collapse of mining, Labin has been inhabited by numerous artists and craftsmen that opened their galleries and ateliers thus revitalising once a sleepy mining town. Several ateliers open their doors from April through to October.


Accommodation is mainly offered in private houses and apartments since there aren't any hotels in Labin. On the other hand, choices abound just bellow in Rabac.



Labin is well connected by buses with Pula, Opatija and Rijeka that stop at the bus station, Trg 2 Marta in Podlabin, from where you can catch a local bus to the old town or walk uphill for fifteen minutes to the main square. This bus continues on to Rabac in the peak season.


Labin is linked with Rabac by a local service : in summer, the bus to Rabac, via the old town leaves every hour between 6am and midnight.


You can also walk down to Rabac in about three-quarters of an hour by taking a 4 km well-marked path, all downhill.


In summer, Labin abounds in numerous events, expositions, concerts and festivals. Every July and August, Labin Art Republic takes over the old town when more than 30 artists “invade” Labin. During the festival they alive the streets and the squares with theatre plays, outdoor concerts, clown performances and open studios.


It is pleasant to walk through the old city's narrow streets where are concentrated all sights to visit in a one day trip.

Town Square
Town Loggia
Miners Federation Building
Circular Bastion
St. Florian's Town Gate
Town Palace
Small Theatre
Matija Vlacic Illirik Memorial Collection in Frankovic house
The bell-tower from the 17th century near the demolished Church of St. Justus
The Parish Church of the Nativity of the Blessed Virgin Mary
Churche of St. Sergius
Churche of St. Marinella
Town museum housed in the baroque Batiala – Lazzarini Palace
Renaissance Scampicchio Palace
The Municipal Art Gallery
The Chapel of Our Lady of Carmel now an art gallery
Dubrova - sculpture park Forma Viva, located nearby the old town

...and finally at the end of the walk...

On the remains of a medieval fortress called the Fortica, the towns's highest point there is a viewing terrace which offers a fabulous view of Rabac and the entire Kvarner Bay with the mountainous shape of Cres.


...GETAWAY to the RABAC beaches...

Beach and sea “addicts” could easily reach one of the Rabac beaches situated some 300 meters beneath the old city that are only forty minutes' walk downhill.


Numerous walking trails and a developed cycling network of bike paths and bicycle-friendly roads will allow you to rapidly access to the beautiful and luxuriant nature surrounding Rabac and its bay.

A little further east, the slopes of Mt. Učka offer better possibilities for hiking, trekking, free climbing, riding, mountain biking, hang gliding and paragliding.


Equestrian-sport club Astra from Labin and a couple of regional farms organise riding schools in the area surrounding Rabac and Labin.

Presika 121
52 220 Labin
+385 912547224


Public hunting area of Labin, under the direction of the Kamenjarka hunting association is at the disposal of the hunters.

LD "Kamenjarka" Ripenda
Verbanci 5d
52220 Labin
+385 52 857


Tourist office situated in Labin covers Labin and Rabac.

Aldo Negri 20
52 220 Labin
+385 (0)52 855560

There's also a seasonal information booth in the old town opened during the summer season.

Tourist Information Center Stari grad

Titov trg 2/1, Labin
+385 (0)52 852 399

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