We will be staying in Rovinj for three nights at the end of May with a rental car. I was reading in the RS book that parking is usually unavailable in the Old Town if you are not a resident. I also read that if you stay in the Old Town you will have to pay for parking and then walk, so it may be easier to stay to the southeast. I wanted to see if anyone had experiance with either or both and what the recommendation would be or pluses/minuses. Thanks!
I stayed in Rovinj a few years ago at the beginning of May. Tourist season hadn't yet quite started, but the town wasn't empty. I too worried about the parking and stayed about a 15 minute walk from the old town, at a place with free street parking. In retrospect, I wish I had stayed in the town itself (though my walks into town were actually quite pleasant, especially once I got to the water). The main parking lot I saw was not full. It would have cost more for sure, for both the parking and the location, but it would have been more convenient. In late May, I'd guess parking would be tighter than when I was there, but I would be surprised if you have trouble parking in the main lot. I think in summer high season there are additional overflow lots because the town really fills up.
Hi. My significant other and I (then mid 50s) did this about 4 years ago. Driving around Slovenia/Croatia, we stayed a couple of nights in Rovinj. Stayed in a place in the old town. Parked the car in a parking lot outside of the old town (IIRC directly next to the Adriatic), and then walked with our bags to our place. It worked out great, and I would do it again. Did the same in Piran as well. (But in Piran, we were supposed to stay at the RS recommended Max's, but after confirming our reservation the night before, Max stood us up. Only bad experience I have ever had in a RS recommended place).
I also stayed at a lovely place inside Rovinj's old town. They will let you drive your car into the old town up to your hotel for like an hour to check in and drop off your luggage, then you have to drive out to park your car in the big public lot just outside the gates. It was maybe a 10-15 minute walk back to the hotel. When we left we could have gone to get the car and drive it in, but we decided to walk with our luggage.
I loved staying in the old town. Wandering around in the evening, going out to dinner at a charming waterfront restaurant and then taking a leisurely stroll back to our lodging. I stayed at Porta Antica residences (http://www.portaantica.com/) and loved waking each morning and looking out at the view of the harbor and watching the fishing boats coming and going. (Note that not all their apartments are equal, so if it suits you, select wisely. It's already late to be booking a place in May.)
I believe I it's about 1 kuna (about $0.15) per hour to park. So really not very expensive. There might be closer-in parking that costs more.
Adding my voice to the choir. I was there in late May and found the town utterly charming and authentic. We loved staying inside the old town in Rovinj and would recommend doing so.
Unless you really, really need to fight hard to save every Euro-cent, I think it's unwise to scrimp on locations like this. The way I look at it, you spend a lot of money and effort to get to Europe, so while you're there you want great experiences and great memories. For me, that usually means staying in the old center, even if I have to pay a bit more. You get more charm and positive feelings, and it puts you right where you want to be (in fact, where you worked hard to get to), rather than putting you just outside where you wanted to be gazing in.
Thanks everyone! I will definitely focus in staying in the Old Town.
I was reading in the RS book that parking is usually unavailable in
the Old Town if you are not a resident
You cannot even drive in the Old Town as it is completely pedestrianized. Not sure why that is even noted in the book.
There are several large parking lots which are not crazy expensive just on the edge of the historic center. Not an issue at all to park in one of those lots and walk a small distance.
Rovinj has the least promising selection of restaurants of the coastal towns, in my opinion. Stay far away from the long line of places offering "Fish, Pizza and Pasta" along the harbor. Dig deeper and consult an expert on eating out - like the Frankaboutcroatia.com website. While Rovinj is beautiful to look at, I find her to be a bit shallow once you explore. I prefer other towns of Istria - you'll have to find those yourself.